This week’s newsletter for Rossall Nursery, Pre-Prep and Prep School.
Happy New Year! I hope this newsletter finds you refreshed and ready for an exciting start to the Lent term. The first week back after the Christmas break has been filled with energy, enthusiasm, and a warm welcome for our pupils.
We began the week with an assembly to welcome our children back to School. It was wonderful to see familiar faces and to extend a warm greeting to new pupils who joined us this term. The assembly focused on how we respond when things do not go according to plan. We heard from a number of children who told us stories of things that had gone wrong over the festive period, from overzealous security guards at Disneyland, to presents that were given and opened by accident. All the stories centred on what the response was when events conspired against us. What I was most pleased with was the resilience displayed by the children and we linked this to the challenges we face on an everyday basis.
There has been a rekindling of the spirit of learning and a number of New Year’s resolutions, although I did remind children of the fact you can make these every second of every minute of the year if you so choose! I have been particularly impressed by our Year 6 cohort, who have returned ready to impress in both their interviews and entrance tests; there has clearly been a lot of hard work going on over the holiday period.
Our latest clubs and activities programme is already well underway and I know that the children have been making the most of the array of new pursuits on offer. This week has very much been ‘back to business’ in the classroom but I know that we have some very excited children as they look forward to a plethora of sporting fixtures and challenges coming up this half term.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Vehicles On Site Reminder
I would like to remind all parents of our expectations for vehicles that come onto the School site. When dropping off and collecting your children, please be mindful that the speed limit within Rossall grounds is 5mph, which has been set for the safety of everyone. The car park is a place where there are moving vehicles and we strongly advise escorting children to and from the playground. Please be courteous to all other drivers.
For Nursery parents who are allowed to use South Drive, Rossall Nursery is housed on a School site within a boarding community, and there are children moving around throughout the day. No vehicle should go past the Nursery building and the speed limit remains at 5mph – hazard warning lights should be switched on when entering South Drive.
The mornings and evenings are dark and I understand that many of us may be running late, particularly given the ongoing work with the bypass. For both of these reasons, can I please ask that we all work together to ensure that Rossall remains a safe place for all of our children.
Mr M Turner
Headmaster of Preparatory School & Nursery
It was lovely to welcome the children back to the Preparatory School this week, they have returned full of enthusiasm and a desire to work hard. It is a good job, as we most certainly have hit the ground running!
Our new class novel and English focus for this half term is “Holes” by Lois Sachar, an amusing and powerful story about crime, punishment, redemption and lots and lots of holes! The children have enjoyed reading about Stanley Yelnats (spot the palindrome) and his journey to Camp Green Lake to begin his time at the juvenile detention centre.
We have also been working hard during our Mathematics lessons revising various topics and refreshing our calculator skills.
In Science, we have begun our ‘Animals Including Humans’ topic by learning about the chambers of the heart and their functions. Children went on a QR code hunt to find out how blood flows through the heart, where it comes from and where it goes after it leaves the heart. We are now all in awe of this organ and the magnificent job it does keeping us alive and well!
Refreshed, recharged and ready for action, Year 5 returned this week full of enthusiasm to share their Christmas holiday news with their classmates.
The new term brings a whole range of exciting opportunities in Music, Sport and Drama, and we have enjoyed perfecting our dance routine to ‘Step in Time’ in preparation for ‘Poppins’, coming to the Rossall Theatre soon! I was delighted to see some of the children audition for the Prep Choir, as well as try out for the Cross Country squad, and there are lots of events to look forward to as the term progresses.
‘The Tudors and the Golden Age of Exploration’ is our Topic this half term, and we have made a wonderful start by investigating The Battle of Bosworth in 1485. This engaging period of history has already captivated the children, and we are looking forward to furthering our knowledge with a wide range of learning activities, including an exciting visit to Turton Tower for a Tudor experience fit for a King and Queen!
This week, in Science, Year 4 have been learning about the different states of matter: solid, liquid and gas. We grouped different items from around the classroom by their state. The class also really enjoyed embodying the molecules of matter in these different states.
In Topic, we have started learning all about the Romans. We kicked it off by investigating how Rome was founded through the myth ‘Romulus and Remus’ and then moved on to explore the Roman Empire. We used our atlas skills to pinpoint and label countries on a map. They were amazed to see how huge the Roman Empire was.
In English, we have started reading our new class novel, “Escape From Pompeii”, which seamlessly links in with our topic. We have specifically focused on new vocabulary such as excavate, pumice and barren. We found their definitions and learned them to help with our understanding.
Happy New Year 2024! After the winter break, the Year 3s have come back to school full of energy and enthusiasm, hitting the ground running ready to start all our new learning. I have told the class how much I enjoy this half term because our English, Topic and Science connect up beautifully, with wonderful cross-curricular links!
Our learning is going to be quite led by our topic this half term, which is Stones and Bones – learning about the history of Britain in the Stone Age right up to the Iron Age! So far this week we have created mind maps showing what we already know about the Stone Age (we have some experts in the class already!). We then learnt about how to survive in the Stone Age and how tools were created. The children designed and presented adverts for their own bows and arrows!
In English, we have introduced our new class book – “Stone Age Boy”. We have read the start of the book and used this to learn about comparative adjectives, writing captions for images from the book. We recapped speech marks to write ‘speech sandwiches’ between the new characters. Even our comprehension this week was an extract from ‘Stone Age Rampage’!
For Science, we started our learning about rocks! This began with looking at different rocks, describing them and talking about where we find different rocks. We discovered there are 3 types of natural rocks (sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic) in addition to human-made rocks. We conducted an investigation into the different properties of rocks, testing for their durability, permeability and density. Great fun investigating!
In Maths we are continuing our learning about multiplication and division but now extending ourselves to multiply 2-digit numbers by 1-digit numbers – quite a tricky feat! We are learning to use partitioning and the column method to help us with this.
In PSHE this week we covered Growth Mindset and how to be positive learners – Year 3 have certainly demonstrated that this week!
Well done for a fantastic first week back!
The first full week back has indeed been incredibly “full”. We have started new topics in all curriculum areas and the Year 2 children have been working incredibly hard.
In English, we have started reading “The Dragon Machine”. We are using this to aid our writing, thus far the class have written an independent fictional story concentrating on incorporating adjective phrases and have also created posters warning members of Pre-Prep of the presence of some rather pesky dragons. In Mathematics we have been working on multiplication and the children have been using arrays to help with their understanding of the relationship between addition and multiplication. I have been incredibly impressed with the ease in which they have picked up this concept.
We are now well underway with our Topic work on castles and the class have been learning all about Motte and Baileys, who introduced them to England, their design, and how they changed from timber structures to stone and the reasons why. Not only this, they have been making cross-curricular links with our Mathematics work on shapes to create castles in Art.
If all the learning in the classroom was not enough, the children also had the opportunity to play some golf as part of their new Rossall Rotation activity. The children’s attitude and work ethic has been absolutely fabulous since their return from the Christmas holidays. Well done year 2, keep it up!
Welcome back! What a fantastic start back to the new term. The children are rested, re-energised and raring to get stuck in! They were eager to share all of their exciting news about their holidays.
This half term our topic is ‘Frozen in Time’, and our class book is “The Curious Case Of The Missing Mammoth”. In English, we became archaeologists, looking at parts of a creature to try and figure out what we would find when all the pieces were joined together. We made some interesting predictions – could it be Bigfoot? Or a bear? Or even Rupert? Of course not! It was a Woolly Mammoth! We then shared our ideas about what a Woolly Mammoth looks like and wrote descriptive sentences.
As part of our Science work, we have started to think about Winter and compared it to other seasons. In preparation for our visit to Blackburn Museum in a few weeks, we have been looking at famous portraits as part of our topic work. We discussed what we liked and disliked about some famous portraits and thought about how they are similar or different.
In Maths, we have been naming, sorting and identifying 2D and 3D shapes. We have started to think about the properties of the shapes and how we can use these to help us sort the shapes. We have used 2D shapes to create pictures, and 3D shapes to build models.
A super week. Well done!
“It is New Year and snow lies upon the ground. Under the earth, the Snowdrop is snug and warm inside her bulb. A ray of winter sunshine reaches her and she grows towards the light and breaks through to the world. But the North Wind tells the Snowdrop she has come out too soon – she can’t possibly survive the night. The Snowdrop battles the winter weather through the night…and in the morning she is proud to be recognised as the very first flower of the New Year, a welcome reminder that winter will soon be over”.
The story from our assembly this week shows that a snowdrop is a sign of hope and new beginnings and a promise of good things to come. We have thought about the good things we can all do in this hopeful New Year. The children have thought about how they can be like a snowdrop in their heart…and mind. We have also learnt all about the parts of a snowdrop and we can’t wait to find some on our walks around school!
We have focused on our ‘Personal, Social and Emotional Development’ this week, as we remind ourselves of the routines and classroom expectations. The children have settled well and are very excited about a ‘Naughty Bus’ that has arrived in the post for us, who appears to be naughty by name and nature!
“Play is the highest expression of human development in childhood for it alone is the free expression of what is in a child’s soul” – Friedrich Froebel, Founder of the Kindergarten.
This week in the Nursery we have focused on Personal, Social and Emotional Education.
It has been so lovely to see The Sanderlings back after their Christmas break. It has been a wonderful week with lots of outdoor time enjoying the crisp weather. The Sanderlings have taken part in a variety of activities in the garden such as using buckets and sand to practise filling, emptying and making marks. The ramps and drain pipes were used to wheel cars and balls down and the older babies were supported to use words such as fast and slow. The babies have been on daily walks around the grounds with the older children from other rooms and have been so excited to explore the outdoors with them. The Sanderlings have been enjoying investigating space and shape by crawling through our cube storage units and under the slide exploring the ways in which they can use their bodies to explore and take up space.
The Sandpipers have had a fantastic first week back helping some of the younger children from The Sanderlings room to settle in. It is a big change for the younger children, so The Sandpiper team and children involved them in lots of team building and social activities to form new bonds and encourage relationships to develop. The children have been singing their ‘hello’ song at circle time which supports the children in learning each other’s names, which the children have really enjoyed and have then used the correct names in play.
The Sandpipers have been introduced to their book of the month “The Gruffalo’s Child” by Julia Donaldson. The children are already familiar with the story so they were able to recall words and phrases as well as talking about the characters and what they are doing during key events in the story.
Finally, The Sandpipers have spent lots of time outdoors playing ball games. Whilst outside, the children also observed the weather and talked about what clothing is suitable for cold weather and what changes we will see as the weather warms up over the coming months.
Pre-School’s first week of the year has been fun and adventurous. The children had a visit from “Daddy Spider” at the beginning of the week, the children said he “crawled” his way inside the classroom “through the garden door”. The children were very brave and excited to hold him and guide him back outside towards his home.
On Wednesday all of the children enjoyed walking around the Rossall grounds on a ‘colour hunt’ looking for different natural colours in the environment. The children did an amazing job of working as a team and ticking the colour checklist together when they found colours. The Pre-School book of the month is “Jack Frost” by Kazuno Kohara, and to link with this, the children wrapped up warm to play “catch me if you can” in the garden. I wonder what excitement next week will bring?
This week, our certificates have been awarded to Poppy for excellent attitude to Home Learning, Rhiannon for excellent work during English lessons and being an outstanding role model, Millie for her dedicated attitude towards work both in and outside the classroom, and Monty for applying himself fully in everything he has done this week.
Our certificates this week are awarded to Harriet for outstanding interest and enthusiasm in our History Topic, and Florence for outstanding artwork and interest in our History Topic.
In Year 4, our certificate winners this week are Willow for having such a positive attitude to school and for settling in well and Felix for continuing to be organised and having a positive attitude in all lessons.
The first certificates of 2024 in Year 3 go to Junior for extending himself with his writing and to Arla for helping others and being kind.
This week, our certificates go to Dylan and Teigan for fabulous creativity in their story writing.
This week’s awards are for Rupert, for excellent contributions during our Maths lessons, and Joshua for super ideas in his writing.
This week’s certificates of achievement go to Pippa and Rafferty.
Both children have demonstrated excellent problem-solving skills as they have tried to work out how to stop the ‘Naughty Bus’ creating havoc in our classroom.
We would like to invite you to a Parent lunch which will take place in the Lent term. We pride ourselves on our relationships and hosting a lunch gives us a great opportunity to meet new members of our community, welcome back existing parents and provide an opportunity for conversation, interaction and friendship. Members of the Prep School and Nursery Leadership team will be in attendance, alongside class teachers.
Places are limited, therefore please kindly RSVP to confirm your attendance and any dietary requirements using this form. If you have more than one child across different year groups, please complete a separate form for each lunch attending.