Interim reports

Education Learning Log

Today’s Nativity

Today’s nativity was at Greenlees nursery. Another lovely tearjerker. Well done the children and staff at Greenlees, which is a partnership nursery with SLC. Its one of those places where you’d have loved your own children to have attended. One more show tonight at Westcoats, which are always a real treat and then I’m off for my Christmas break. Maybe time to get things organised at home then….

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December 21, 2009 Posted by | education | , , | Leave a comment

Calderwood Winter Wonderland

Lovely afternoon watching Calderwood Primary’s Winter Wonderland Show. Each class performed a medley of songs, the school bands performed and we had a sneak preview of some songs from next week’s nativity. The children in p7 had organised the programme, tickets, invites etc etc as part of an enterprise topic and would give many an events company a run for their money. Well done to all involved.

December 17, 2009 Posted by | Creativity, education | , | Leave a comment

Tis the season…

I’m diverting from my usual mumblings about school as I feel like an extra in one of those grumpy old women programmes. I need to spit it out. I made a huge mistake and visited the shops in Glasgow tonight… I had decided I’d do all my shopping online this year and its worked a treat, presents gift wrapped and arriving at people’s doors without my hand even touching them, typed up tasteful gift tags enclosed, gift vouchers sent that people might even find useful cos they’re from Amazon, goodies for my boys arriving daily in little boxes with our jolly postman, however for some reason I thought I’d go and see the lights in George Square tonight and pop in to Fopp and Borders for some cheap stocking fillers…. Dearie me. My Christmas spirit disappeared in one fell swoop.

In Christmas seasons gone by I’ve seen the annual argument in the main street where I live, over Santa’s slow queue – this can result in hair pulling fights. I’ve watched the last turkey argument in Asda’s freezer aisle, which can be a dangerous event. But they were nothing to the misery of Border’s book shop at 6.30 on 20th December. Border’s is usually one of my favourite places to spend a happy, meandering hour or two at the weekend. But tonight was different. The first clue was the slamming of main door in my face by an enraged exiting customer. What I thought might be a crowd about to listen to someone give a wee talk or something was the queue for the tills. I couldn’t get up the stairs nevermind read a book. So I gave in and left. However I did contemplate the meaning of this fest of spending in a book shop, and I suppose it can’t be a bad thing that people are buying books, even if they are shoving each other out of the way to get at them – books are infinitely more interesting and useful than chocolate, slippers or bath fizzbomb thingummies. That was a hint to family members….

Anyway the bah humbug bit out the way. Tomorrow is our nativity. It’s sparkly, cheerful and just plain tear jerking! I’m looking forward to it.

December 20, 2007 Posted by | Nonsense | , | Leave a comment

Primary 7s are off on their break

Tomorrow P7 are off on their outward bound week to Castle Toward in Dunoon. Bless em it might be a bit chilly, but they were so excited in Friday they were fit to burst. There are only a few not going and they are going to be trainee classroom assistants next week, helping with the nativity etc!

The week before Christmas we are having a maths theme week to encourage active learning throughout the school in maths. We are using the supporting materials developed by South Lanarkshire as a starting point. These are for P4-7 classes and approach maths in much the way the infant staff do – using washing lines etc. In the meantime everyone is revising addition and subtraction processes P3-7 – the maths scheme (I won’t name it) we use is teaching the thought processes behind concepts but we are increasingly finding it is not balancing this with any processes. So children at times work things out in the most round about way. After Christmas we are going to have a look at multiplying and dividing. Some of these publishers have a lot to answer for and I’m hopeful that CfE will not become something else they can cut up and produce schemes for. For too long many have followed schemes blindly with no thought for real learning and teaching.

Our visitors from Norway, New Zealand, LTS and our disrict HMIe are now all coming on the same day next Thursday. And our head of attainment is popping in too! It’ll be like an education party knees up thing! I thought of plying them with some mulled wine…. but I think they’d see past that ploy and still ask tricky questions! Our children are quite excited at the thought of these visitors from afar and have been polishing up their door opening and welcome techniques.

On our big Christams tree at the front entrance we have a wee enterprise going. We have been selling shiny gift cards which the children have been writing their Christmas wishes on. They have been well worth a read and I’ve seen a few glistening eyes from even the most hardened staff. One of my favourites wished that, even though they had been up to mischief they wouldn’t only get a piece of black coal on Christmas day. It reminded me of when I was little. My nana spent many weeks every year threatening me with just the same dreadful thing. When I had a better, less rascally day she would say that I’d moved from the bit of black coal to a tangerine and a wooden peg. Apparently she was lucky if she got a tangerine, a sixpence and some wooden pegs for her Christmas (she was fairly old at this point). Apparently many a game could be had with wooden pegs in those days. I think she maybe read too much Ivor Cutler.

December 9, 2007 Posted by | Nonsense | , , | Leave a comment

Rich task update

We held our Learning Community’s Malawi rich task meeting tonight.

The outline of the Malawi rich task has been completed. The teachers used the handy blank publisher template from Argyll and Bute to write this up. Tonight, we all looked at how to set up a wordpress blog so fingers crossed we’ll soon have some blogging networks going on amongst our pupils in the eight different primaries. At the next meeting we will all agree how we are going to do the first mindmap/brainstorm piece of work in January with all the classes and agree the pre assessment format for the children. So far we’ve got a lot done (that’s the royal we..). What I should say is that this group of teachers have got a lot done!

Everyone has gone off tonight with some shared good ideas – thinking about sharing the criteria for the task, using various ways of doing this, peer and self assessment ideas etc. We’re looking forward to seeing materials Mossneuk are bringing back the next time related to sharing writing learning intentions.

If anyone is working on this too then just get in touch – the more sharing the better, is my motto! Sharing and learning from each other is the best way to learn! We’ve got on much faster because of what Argyll and Bute have shared on their website. It’s certainly made our task much easier to plan.

Prior to this meeting I had been at the lead officer network in the afternoon where we were sharing with each other what we are all doing and discussing action research. I met a visitor from New Zealand’s Education ministry who is over doing some research here for a couple of months. It turned out she is the New Zealand visitor coming to see us in a week with our HMIe district inspector to complete our HMIe process. This is to do the moderation of the Local Authority report on our action plan.

We are also having 5 visitors from Norway’s education service a few days after that. We are inundated with visitors since we moved to our brand new building and you’d think by now that we would be accustomed to working in our new environment. But I have to say that I pinch myself everyday as I still can’t beleive we work in such a beautiful building! So I’d show it off to people every day given the chance as we’re all so proud of it!

Tomorrow we are celebrating St Andrew’s day with various activities in class. In the afternoon parents and carers are invited to “family time” where they can wander and discuss with the children the work they have been doing on Scots Language. The books we have used for these book studies are , Katy’s Coo, Katy Morag and the Birthday, Scots FairyTales, Planet Perjink, Planet Fankle, Hercules Bampots and Heroes and Kidnappit. Some of our after school Scots singing group performed with other schools at Cathkin High last week and they will be singing to our visitors.

And somewhere as if by magic, Christmas has suddenly come upon us. We’ve been getting all glittery and sparkly, singing the nativity songs, sticking things together, making crafts for our fair  – the usual things that make Christmas so Christmasy in our school. I admit though that the nativity scenery making was weighing heavily on me until I went to the local craft shop and discovered these fab 50 foot long polythene sheets with stars and nativity back drops on them! Fantastic and then as the best plan in a while we recycled last week’s Anderson shelter into a stable! A roll of brown corrugated card and recycled oil drums can go a long way in our school!

November 29, 2007 Posted by | learning, Malawi, Rich tasks, Scots | , , , , , , | Leave a comment