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Ash House Reward Evening - it was lovely to all come together to celebrate Ash House’s win. Lots of games were played and cake eaten!

Year 5 go to Kilvrough Manor - Monday 22nd to Friday 26th April

What an amazing week Red Kites had in Wales. The sun shone and so did all of the children's personalities as they tackled challenges, worked in teams, developed independence and grew in confidence and resilience. To see more photos of their incredible week, please visit Red Kites class page on this link:

https://www.suttoncourtenayprimary.co.uk/kilvrough-2024/

The Great Comic Relief Bake Off!

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Cake! Cake! Cake! What an evening Friday 15th March was. This was our first Bake Off event and it couldn't have been better supported, thank you so much to all children and parents. The biscuits, cupcakes and showstopper big cakes looked (and tasted) amazing - the school hall really was a sea of deliciousness! A huge thank you also goes to Tilly, Junior Bake Off Winner, for being involved in the planning and preparation for the day as well as her appearance as guest judge at the event - what an inspiration for our children and budding bakers! We raised over £300 for Comic Relief which will go towards making a difference to the lives of others.

The Milestones Roadshow

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On Friday 15th March, as well as it being Comic Relief Red Nose Day, Key Stage 2 were visited by the OCC Highways Agency Milestone Roadshow. The morning started with an assembly, where the children were told about the work that the MIlestone team do. It was interesting to find out about the process of road, path and bridge repairs and the permissions they have to seek before they can put a repair in place, even considering the time of year so that wildlife aren't affected. There was also a focus on being responsible when out and about and crossing roads, thinking about dangers and distractions, please do have follow-up conversations about this at home as it is so important.
The classes were then split into groups for their workshop session where they got to find out more roadsigns and what they tell us, how protective the clothing is ans why it needs to be and about the machinery and what jobs they do - the favourite was the Dragon patcher, which breathes fire to mend pot holes! A huge thank you to the Milestone staff for coming in for the day and making it so interesting.

World Book Day!

Today we enjoyed dressing up as our favourite characters and sharing our favourite books. We also launched our sponsored read and listen - Ready Steady Read with Usborne Books. We hope to raise lots of money for lovely new books in our school. 

We took inspiration from 'Peter Pan' and asked children across the trust schools to share their happy thoughts! We hope to have these on display in classrooms for the coming weeks to help us remember the things that make us - and each other - happy. You can see the video of our day by clicking here.

Tilly the Master Baker visits!

On Monday 26th February, Tilly (the winner of Junior Bake-off) came to talk to us in assembly. She explained what participating had been like, and also talked about all the events she has taken part in since linked to her success. Tilly is appearing on Blue Peter in the next few weeks – we will keep you posted! Tilly also answered questions from the children. It was lovely for the children to see that a child who used to attend our school could participate at this national level so successfully, and we talked about how when you put yourself in a new situation you never know how far it will take you! Tilly explained that when she had entered, she didn’t even really expect to get on the show at all, never mind win the final!

Young Voices 2024 - 23rd January - What an amazing day for our choir!

Birch House celebrate their win!

On Friday 19th January Birch House enjoyed spending time together after school to celetrate their win of the most house points in Term 1&2. They played board games, construction, circle games including the parachute and duck, duck, goose. Then they enjoyed some squash and delicious cakes, baked by Blake in Year 6's mum - Thank you! It was a lovely evening and a joy to see children from different classes playing together.

 

Christmas performances

Families and friends have been delighted with our Christmas performances as usual. On Thursday 8th September, Kestrels and Kingfisher's classes performed Barmee Bethlehem - a Nativity told in story, song and dance. It was a very well polished performance and we were particularly impressed with the standard of the children's clear and confident speaking voices. This week we enjoyed the Foundation Stage Nativity Experience with Robin's and Barn Owls performing all the traditional songs including Away In A manger and Little Donkey. The cast kept changing right up to the last minute due to a horrible sickness bug going the rounds in the class, so many children had to step in to new roles on the day! Well done all!

Christmas Lunch

Mrs Greenough was in school before 6am on Wednesday, starting the huge task of preparing all the food for our Christmas lunch. And what a feast it was! Turkey, pigs in blankets, roast potatoes, carrots, sprouts and stuffing – and Christmas biscuits and chocolate cake for pudding. There was a lovely family feel as the staff all ate with the children and the Year 6 children served us all. You can watch the highlights by clicking here. Mr Gill from the Trust came to help out too. Congratulations to to Mrs Greenough and Mrs Pointer not just for the Christmas lunch, but for all their hard work all year to encourage our children to eat balanced, healthy meals.

Switch On Christmas

Our annual event to Switch On Christmas was bigger than ever this year! A huge thank you to the team who put so much work on Friday 8th December and in the run up. Staff were there until midnight the night before preparing the grotto for Father Christmas! It was a magical event that will have created so many beautiful memories. The experience of walking in the dark to sit in the haybales and talk to Father Christmas, the excitement of the countdown to the tree lights exploding into life, and the atmosphere created by the snow machine against the dark sky are all special images. As we always say, the main aim of FOSCS events is to bring us together as a community, but although we do not have the final figures in, we are delighted that we have surpassed last year’s total in money raised, so thank you for your generosity. You can see the video of the evening by clicking here.

Christmas Panto Fun!

Well this morning we were joined by M&M Theatre Productions for a fantastic performance of Robin Hood. The weather was kind and all the whole school walked to the Village Hall where they sat and participated fully in the fun entertainment with singing, cheering and clapping. There was also a little staff dancing participation! Theatre is a cultural experience which is so valuable to all children. A huge thanks to FOSCS who funded the whole event, meaning that we didn't need to ask families for a contribution. A lovely way to start our week and one which ends with the Foscs 'Light up Christmas' event on Friday evening.

Taking responsibility – planning a bake sale

Five girls in Year 6 asked if they could organise a charity bake sale. Their chosen charity is the Ocean Conservation Trust (https://oceanconservationtrust.org/.) They work to connect people with a love of the ocean through making sure there are accessible activities for everyone to enjoy that also develop knowledge of this amazing habitat, so that we all become inspired to care for it. The children organised the whole thing themselves, from liaising about the date to making the posters and manning the stall on the day. They also baked A LOT of cakes! We are very proud of them and the responsibility they took for their own idea.

Be Spotacular!

We held our Children In Need Spotacular fundraiser on Thursday16th November. Across the school there was an outbreak of spots as children had fun thinking of inventive ways to go dotty! Mr Stoodley had a white T-shirt where children were allowed to draw dots as a reward for good answers in class. Some of our Year 6's earned one of their Star Award target by collecting and counting donations for the BBC Children In Need charity - which raised nearly £200! Thank you for your support.

Make Some Noise About Bullying

13th-17th November is Anti-Bullying Week and the theme is 'Make Some Noise About Bullying'. All children will be focused on this for their PSHCE lessons this week, and we started the week with a special assembly in which we practiced making noise! We want all children across the school to know that we are ALL responsible for calling out deliberate, repeated unkindness, so we know to shout "STOP! I don't like that!" if something that isn't kind happens to us or to someone else.

We talked about the difference between bullying and conflict with our friends.

To help us remember that we are all different to we need to work together to keep our school a happy place where everyone feels safe, we started the week with Odd Socks Day!

Remembrance Day 2023


Last week in school we have been preparing for Armistice Day. The 11th November was a Saturday this year, with the annual church Service of Remembrance taking place on
Sunday. Last Monday, the children had a special assembly where we revisited the reasons behind the day including the need to show support for those who have been injured in conflict and give respect for those who died so that we could live in freedom. These can be difficult concepts for
young children to understand.
On Friday morning all children in the Foundation Stage took part in a short ceremony using the wreath they had made.
On Sunday, all families were invited to join with the school to place our wreath on the war memorial outside All Saint’s Church. There was a two minute silence before the bugle call. Afterwards, there was a family friendly service in the Church where children placed a poppy for each named soldier from the parish who died in the First and Second World Wars. 

Mini Minds Design Challenge

Oliver in Wrens class recently entered a competition to design a wrap for the new Mini-Electric in the Mini-Minds competition with Crayola. As a result he has won a wonderful selection of art resources from Crayola for the school – thank you Oliver!

 

One part of the prize was to get his design put on a real MINI Electric which was delivered to the school today. It was the first time Oliver had seen his design on the car, and it was lovely to share this with his friends. The photographs taken will be used in the Mini Electric marketing campaign so we are all hoping to see a lot more of Oliver’s wonderful design.

A Trip to the Abingdon Food Bank

Written by four children from Falcons Class

Our school collected food for the Harvest

Festival. We delivered it to the Abingdon Food Bank. At the food bank there was lots of food to give to people that can’t afford it. There was food, washing products, and also pet supplies. They give blankets to people who cannot afford their heating. The staff gave us a tour. We found the experience to be a little shocking because it’s surprising how many people need to rely on the services of the Food Bank.

School Council Elections - October

We are very proud of our school council and the work they do across school, supporting events and monitoring learning and engagement. Over the past 2 weeks, classes from Year 1 to Year 6, have taken part in elections to vote for their new class representative.

 

This provided us with the opportunity to discuss democracy and be involved in the process of how a real election works. Children who wanted to stand for the position, prepared a short election speech, sharing why they felt they would make a good member of the school council. A secret ballot vote was then held and each classes new representative was appointed. The new School Coucil will be introduced in Celebration Assembly on Friday 13th October.

Black History Month

This week we have encouraged the children to think about Black History Month by joining a Schools Live Assembly on Tuesday morning. Then on Wednesday afternoon, our oldest children in Red Kites and Falcons had an engaging session with Dr Gohar Khan, who is an English teacher at DGS and the Ethos Lead for The Ridgeway Trust. It was wonderful to see the children engaging in discussions and being so keen to ask and answer questions. 

 

Harvest Festival

Lots of friends and family members joined us in school this morning to help us celebrate our Harvest Festival. Our community has been very generous with the gifts for the Abingdon Food Bank, which were arranged on display in the hall by some of our older children. Reverend Helen and Alison joined us to lead the prayers and bless our offerings. In between singing all our favourite Harvest hymns and songs, each class stood up to perform a poem or short song. This is part of our curriculum focus this year on poetry, and our ongoing work to help every child feel confident speaking up. The children showed our school values brilliantly, being ready to perform, respectful of others with their listening skills, and responsible as a group for their class offering to the service.

 

At lunchtime, children enjoyed a Harvest Celebration lunch with some of their favourite menu items including hot dogs, macaroni cheese and ice cream.

 

Our contributions to the Abingdon Food bank will be dropped off next week.

The Young Voices 2024 Choir is launched! 

In January 2024, we will be taking part in Young Voices 2024. It is an amazing event involving 1,000s of children performing in a massive concert at Birmingham Resorts World Arena. We had our first rehearsal today and were introduced to the songs we will be singing and had a sing through of our first song 'Matilda the Musical Medley'. If your child is in KS2 and you haven't signed up on parentmail but is interested, then they are welcome to come along on Tuesday lunchtime next week. Very soon all the paperwork will be sent home with more details of how to log onto the songs at home and the official registration. It is very exciting!

Forest School Summer holidays:

24th July until 26th July, Miss Holden and Mrs Potter volunteer to run Forest School sessions to help raise money for the school. The money raised is used for outdoor resources such as the new mud kitchen in Barn Owls, the new sand pit for after school club as well as the up keep of outdoor spaces around school. 

This year we have been lucky to have Mrs Holderness volunteering and even better she is cooking fish finger butties and chips for the last day. 

We even had PCSO Sue come for a visit and toast a marshmallow!

Activities included:

- pond dipping (seems to be a favourite)

- stone decorating

- cooking on the fire

- den building

- whittling

- mud cooking

- making mud slides

Check out some of the activities we have been doing so far:

Camera, Lights, ACTION!

On Thursday 6th July, Falcons class put on their end of year show, Camera, Lights, Action! The story line was based around a school-based TV station, with popular TV show formats set in school settings. Through a series of songs and sketches, the children took us through hilarious takes on soap operas, quiz shows, DIY shows and documentaries. Many children took on several roles and there were a lot of quick costume changes. They were supported by Year 5 who joined them for the singing numbers. It was wonderful to see them working together as a team to put the show on, gathering their props, costumes and scenery together for each set. We were extremely proud of them, and of course we must say a special thanks to the staff who put so much into the organisation of these performances.

Sports Day!

It was lovely to see so many of you at school on Wednesday for our Sports Day. As usual, a lot of hard work goes into the planning of these events in order for them to be such an enjoyable occasion. For some children, it is the highlight of their year and they were excited. For others, the prospect of athletic activity in front of a large audience can feel extremely daunting. We were so impressed with the way children challenged themselves, regardless of their natural aptitude. It is always a very special moment when everyone cheers each other on and recognises each other’s individual efforts. As staff who know them well, we saw many examples of children who had been extremely nervous overcoming their anxiety and showing real determination, supported by their peers. Of course, it is also a joy to watch those children who are naturally talented too. A huge thank you to Mrs Knight for her organisation, and also to FOSCS for providing the refreshments. There are a few photos below, but you can also see the video from the day by clicking here

Term 6 Careers Assembly

It was lovely to be joined by Ridgeway Trust's Careers Lead, Mr Stuart George, again this term. This time he brought with him two more pupils from DGS, Isla (an ex Sutton Courtenay pupil) and Sky, as well as Peter Hubbard from The Body Shop. The employability theme was Problem Solving and the visitors spoke about the importance of being able to problem solve in secondary school and the work place. We have been very lucky, as a Primary School, to have the opportunity to explore key employability skills and various career opportunities through our termly assemblies this year and look forward more visits from Mr George next year.

Wildlife through a lens...

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During May half term, the children were set the challenge of taking photographs of minibeasts, mainly in their natural environment. They have done so well and taken some amazing photos. All children who took part received a House point for their team and they are displayed in the entrance of school.

Celebrations for the Coronation!

On Friday 5th May, the whole school came together for a party to celebrate the coronation of King Charles III, which many of us will be watching on the television and celebrating at home with our families. It was a wonderful opportunity to come together in our 'inclusive participation' strand of our Personal Development curriculum. In addition, there was a great deal of opportunity to reflect on the nature of power and service, key strands of our whole curriculum which were the theme of our assembly together at the end of the day. Children across the school made crowns to wear, and we had a non uniform day with a red, white and blue theme. The weather forecast had given Mrs Knight a few headaches with the planning, and indeed it did rain at 11.30am, but then the sun came out and we enjoyed a dry picnic and an afternoon with lots of fun activities. These included traditional games such as hoopla, wellie wanging, maypole, parachute games and dressing up. Enjoy the photographs! 

Junior Citizens

It has been a busy week for Year 6! On Wednesday they attended Junior Citizens at Oxford Fire Station. These sessions are run by representatives from the local emergency services. They set up various scenarios and the children have opportunities to consider how they would respond to these in ways that would help them to keep themselves safe and make good choices as a group. The scenarios include safety near rail tracks, rivers and roads, in the home and online. Children practice making risk mental risk assessments before acting, and during the course of the afternoon everyone has an opportunity to experience making a 999 call. This links with all the key threads of our Personal Development curriculum, but particularly with the strands relating to leadership and higher calling, self care, and taking responsibility.

Easter Reflections.

All classes performed as part of our Easter services during the last week of term. On Tuesday morning, Kestrels and Kingfishers got up on the stage and performed a song and a poem for the rest of the school and watching parents. Even Robins and Barn Owls took part, having pre-recorded their singing of 1,2,3, Jesus is Alive! Today, Key Stage 2 classes visited All Saints Church. Despite technical issues with the sound system, we had a lovely service celebrating in the beautiful setting of the church. Again, all classes performed a spoken contribution which gives valuable experience of public speaking in a different setting

Pirates versus Mermaids!

The end of Term 4 saw another fantastic show - Pirates vs Mermaids, performed by Wrens and Nightingales classes. As always, there is a huge amount of work that goes into these productions, but it is well worth it to see the children grow in confidence and have the opportunity to find their voice before an audience. Learning to handle pre-show nerves is an important life skill! It is also a fantastic way to integrate aspects of the art, design technology and music curriculum together. It was a wonderful performance – well done to all involved!

Term 4 - Careers Assembly

Today, Tuesday 21st March was our termly assembly with Mr George, the careers lead for our trust (Ridgeway Education Trust). The key employability skill that we are focussing on this term is Communication. Mr George was joined by DGS students Harshini and Beth who talked about their experieces of Takeover days and work placements and how communication was essential during these.

We then had a presentation from Paul Cruddis, an accountant from National Power Network. He explained really clearly through a shop scenario, the ingoings, outgoings and profit of a business and the role of an accountant, particulalry drawing on the skill of communication.

Attached is the termly careers newsletter, please do find time to discuss the assembly and the skill of communication with your children.

 

A Flash of Red for Comic Relief

Today we had a non-uniform a day of non-uniform with splashes of red everywhere for Comic Relief! Instead of buckets, all donations were collected in our big RED posting box. The money goes to fund lots of amazing projects supporting those in need in the UK and around the world. You can find out more about some of the projects by clicking here.

 

It has been an exciting week this week as we celebrated British Science Week! The theme has been connections and we have worked with members of the local community to see how scientists have an impact on our lives. Andrew Kaye is one of out Trustees and is a cloud physicist. He came to talk to us this week in assembly about how science is all about finding patterns and connections. Robins class engaged with the National Famer’s Union who produced a live feed through the day on Tuesday, showing how science is used on the farm. Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire just up the road from here. Year 5 and 6 children met Steve Collins, a physicist. Steve talked to the children about the concept of atoms, and how everything in the world is made up of these tiny, connected structures. Finally, on Thursday Dr Richie come into Nightingales and Wrens to talk about her job in science. She is an engineer and works for Castrol- the oil company. She showed us videos of how engines work and we did a few experiments. Have a look at some of the phots below...

World Book Day 2023!

This year, we held a non-uniform day with a collection for a charity called Book Aid International which distributes books around the world to those who need them most. You can find out more here. Lots of children (and staff!) chose to dress up as book characters, which made it even more special for those who love a bit of fancy dress! Children shared books together across classes, with older children reading to younger ones. You can see a film of our day by clicking here.

 

We were very lucky to be able to welcome local author Naomi Joslyn to school. Her books feature a character called Molly McDrew, who travels around the world (and beyond) on her magic blanket.

Naomi lead a whole school assembly where she talked about her experiences as a writer and in publishing. She explained to the children how she begins with her ideas and stories, and how she has to liaise closely with her illustrator and text designer to make sure the books look just right on the page. Although the books are aimed at Key Stage 1 children, this made the talk relevant and interesting to the older children in school. She then read some of her stories to Kestrels and Kingfishers classes, and they had to join in the magic words to help the story along!

Shrove Tuesday House Pancake Relay

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Fun was had today, when all classes from Robins to Falcons took part in a house event. Each class was organised into their house teams to run a pancake relay with the KS2 children having the added challenge of flipping their pancake!
A huge thank you to this event's Sports Leaders: Spencer, Jamie, Kodeh, Beth, Jasmine, Adj, Miriam and Freyja who tallied team scores and gave lots of encouragement. All classes taking part have completed a challenge on their Class Values Award and Year 6 achieved individual challenges on their Star Award.
The Overall winners of the event will be announced in Star of th week Assembly on Friday. However each class will find out their results before then and points will be added to the House Team Display.

A win for Sutton Courtenay!

It was very exciting to be hosting our first league game of the season! It was against Harwell Primary School and our team today, Tuesday 31st January, were: Ella-Rose, Bailey, Jacob, Mary, Harrison, Charlie, Liv, Riley, Logan and Dorian.

The game started evenly balanced but after 10 minutes Sutton Courtenay started to shine and went 2-0 up with cracking goals from Charlie and Captain Ella-Rose. With seconds to go until the half time whistle, Harwell got a goal back. So we started the second half with a 2-1 lead. It wasn't long before Charlie scored again but a counter attack almost immediatly meant the score was 3-2. Both teams had further chances, with some hitting the post and others saved, including some super saves by Jacob, but no more goals were had so the final whistle signalled a win for Sutton Courtenay!

It was so lovely to see a crowd of supporters who were kept warm by hot chocolates which were on sale from Foscs. Thank you everyone for the support and congratulations team!

The Sutton Courtenay Class Values Award is Launched!

So January 24th marks the launch of our new award. As many of you will be aware, Year 6 have 'The Sutton Courtenay Star Award', which involves them completing challenges both in school and at home. The challenges focus on diplaying our school values and leadership skills and supports them in developing greater independence.

Now it's everyone else's turn to work towards an award - The Class Values Award. From Reception to Year 6, each class has a chart with 12 challenges all fcocussing on working together, as a team' to be Ready, Respectful and Responsible. They include challenges like keeping the cloakroom tidy, planning and producing a class display, a school grounds tidy, taking responsibility for Cessie, our school dog and performing a song or dance from their curriculum to the rest of the school. To achieve the award, each class has to achieve 8 challenges between now and the end of the school year. We look forward to seeing how each class progresses and seeing some awards presented in the Summer Term!

Careers Assembly

Each term we have a Careers Assembly which is led by Mr Stuart George who is the Careers Lead for our School Trust, based at DGS. Each term he focusses on an employability skill, talking to the children about how this feeds into school life and future careers. This term's skill is Teamwork. Today, Tuesday 10th January, he brought with him Richard Merritt, who is a Customer Services Manager from Oxfordshire County Council. He spoke about the values they have and how he manages a team of about 300 people, using the strengths of different people to provide the best service. Mr George also brought two Year 7 students from SBS, in fact both ex-pupils of Sutton Courtenay, Nathaniel and William, who spoke about how team work is important in secondary school. We will now follow up this work in our classrooms, really thinking about when and how teamwork is useful.

 

Christmas Dinner 2022

Today we sat down together for our Christmas dinner in the hall for the first time since 2019! The school has grown now so we have two sittings. In the first sitting, children from Reception, Year 2 and Year 4 ate together. In the second sitting, Year 1, 3 and 5 ate. At both sittings, Year 6 children helped to serve and clear away. Before we ate, we took time to pause and share our gratitude for the lovely food and also for the chance to eat together. A huge thank you to Mrs Greenough and Mrs Pointer who had been preparing since before dawn this morning, and also to Mr Greenough who was also seen lending a hand!

Performing at the Trust concert

On the evening of Tuesday 13th December, a group of our keen singers from across key Stage 2 performed at Didcot Girls' School as part of the Ridgeway Education Trust Christmas concert. It is a huge venue and there were over 500 in the audience, crammed into the sports hall! We sang two of our favourite Christmas songs: 'I Couldn't Sleep One Night' and 'Calypso Carol'. The latter was accompanied by maracas that kept the lively beat. Our little group rose to the occasion with confidence - well done Mrs Knight who led the singing. 

RET Concert 2022.mov

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Experience Christmas

On Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th December, all Key Stage 2 children had the opportunity to visit the Church for 'Experience Christmas'. This interactive session allows the children to move through the phases of the Christmas story, developing their understanding of the key Christian message that the nativity represents a new beginning with the incarnation of God as a human. Reverend Helen and the team told the story through the careful use of settings, artefacts and costumes. As always this is a magical experience and deepens the children's thinking at this important time of year.

Jack and the Beanstalk

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Today, Monday 5th December, the whole school walked to the village hall to watch the Christmas panto 'Jack and the Beanstalk'. Traditionally pantomines were always performed by travelling theatre companies who moved from town to town putting on their plays, so it really is apt that M&M Productions came to Sutton Courtenay to perform for us.
With a production crew of 4 members, between them they perform all the roles including singing and dancing, do the lighting, sound and special effect and even bring the whole set with them - it really is impressive!
The children and staff had a wonderful time. We were all enjoying ourselves and participating so much that not many photos were taken but here are a few to give you an insight into our fun morning!
A huge thank you to FOSCS and everyone who has contributed at events like 'Switch on Christmas' held at school on Friday. You have funded this whole event and enabled every child in school to have a magical theatre experience.

Switch On Christmas!

On Friday 2nd December Father Christmas came to Forest School as part of our magical Switch On Christmas event led by the Friends of Sutton Courtenay School (FOSCS). After a dramatic countdown, the lights on the outdoor Christmas tree are turned on amid many cheers! This event brings the whole school community together, with Year 6 children helping to run the stalls, staff staying late, and parents, carers and children all having a chance to spend time together to get Christmas off to a bright start.

Christmas Decoration Competition

55 children entered our competition to create an outdoor Christmas tree decoration! They had to think carefully about their designs to make sure they were weather proof. We had some wonderful creative designs and it was very hard to choose a winner for each class.This type of activity is inclusive for everyone in our school community and helps foster a sense of pride and ownership of our events. See below for pictures of the class winners.

Anti-Bullying Week 14-18th November 2022

We began our anti-bullying week with Odd Socks Day! This raises awareness of how we are all different and encourages the children to celebrate diversity. The theme of the week this year is Reach Out. Members of school council led the assembly today as we talked through what bullying is and how it differs from falling out with our friends. We also talked about how everyone in school is responsible for making sure bullying is not tolerated in our school by noticing and reaching out when they see it. This theme will continue in our PSHCE lessons this week.

 

Remembrance Sunday 2022

Mrs Hornsey was joined by children from the school as we placed our wreath on the village war memorial. One of our key values is respect, and we have been exploring it this week as we consider those not just in the armed forces but also in emergency response who support in times of conflict. We were joined by some ex-pupils as we placed poppies in the cross in the church service.

Careers Corner!

Today we were very lucky to be joined by Mr Stuart George who is the Careers lead for our School Trust. He spoke to us about the employability skill of 'Organisation'. He reflected on when the children use this skill in school and how important it is as we get older and are in Secondary school and the world of work. We heard from Year 11 students Estelle and Maeve, who shared with us their experiences during their school/work based placements. Then we were very lucky to have Veronica Reynolds who is the Sustainability and Community Manager, Milton Park. She told us all about how her interest in buildings started when she was very young and enjoyed setting up her dolls' house! We learned how organisation is important to her job. 

Please use this as an opportunity to discuss the assembly with your children and look for opportunites to identify the skill of organisation in your home. 

 

Abingdon Cross County 2022

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On Wednesday 5th October Mrs Knight and Mr Stoodley took 16 KS2 children to the Abingdon Partnership Cross Country Competition. There were 4 teams of 4 children competing: Year 3/4 girls, Year 3/4 boys, Yr 5/6 girls and Yr 5/6 boys. In the 2 weeks before they all worked extremely hard training with Mr Stoodley and this really prepared them for the challenge. We were very proud that all children completed the circuit, which took them up and down hill and through wooded areas, with nearly half of them coming in under position 20 - which is incredible with about 80 children in each race.
Well done Team!

Harvest Festival 2022

On Tuesday 4th October, we celebrated our Harvest Festival here in school with many parents and carers who were able to join us. Prior to the event, children were able to bring in gifts to donate to the Abingdon Food Bank, which is needed more than ever this year. As well as taking time to be thankful for the food we have and for the abundance in the world, we also encourage children to begin to be aware of the difficulties that can occur around distribution across the world and within our own communities. This links to the Presentation and advocacy strand of our Personal Development curriculum

Each class performed a short poem or song during the service, and Reverend Helen led the prayers.

Music Flood Week 2022!

Every September, we share a Music Flood Week with other primary schools in the Abingdon area, which is led by Radley College. This initiative aims to ‘flood’ local primary schools with a wide variety of musical experiences, from visits from professional musicians to opportunities for live performances.  It is a great start to the year, putting music in its rightful place as a vital part of our curriculum. This week we have enjoyed a visit from Hackney Colliery Band, and a singing workshop led by a professional singer. On Friday, Red Kites class joined other primary schools in the Abingdon Market Square to sing and make music with their junk orchestra instruments. This links to the Inclusive Participation aspect of our Personal Development curriculum.

Road Safety Week is Here!

 

 It's 9.30 on Monday 27th June and our School Council have just delivered an assembly to the rest of school to introduce Road Safety Week. During the week the children will be having discussions and carryingout activities to support them to think more about staying safe near and on roads.

 

In our Friday Celebration Assembly some children from each class will share something they have done or learned this week. Remember Road Safety is so important and something we need to work together to support our children with.

Planting the science garden

We had a wonderful day on Wednesday in the beautiful sunshine, planting up our science garden. A HUGE thanks to FOSCS who are providing the funding and creativity behind this project, but particularly to Mrs Aitio who has really driven the creative side. With careful timetabling from Mrs Knight, our Queen of Logistics, every child in the school had a chance to be part of the planting sessions. Children learned how to dig the right sized holes, separate the root balls and make sure the plants were snuggly bedded in and watered. Because they are all invested, they will understand the importance of regular maintenance with watering. Being part of nurturing and caring for our school grounds is so important to help children feel invested in the school and feel safe, secure and happy here. You can watch video of the children at work by clicking here.

School Council prepare for Road Safety Week

Road Safety Week starts on Monday 27th June and this week our School Council are busy preparing for the whole school assembly which they are going to lead to introduce the theme to the rest of school. They have written and practised what they are going to say and made some resources and actions to engage their listeners. Remember to join us for celebration assembly on Friday at 2.30pm, when some children from each class will be sharing what they have learned about staying safe.

Strawberry harvest!

All the children in the school take turns to help in the school garden and grounds with Mr Greenough. This week it was the turn of Kingfishers Class - lucky for them, as it was a perfect day to harvest strawberries! they taste so much better freshly picked and warm from the sun. there were enough for everyone in the class.

Everyone's invited!

On Friday 10th June, everyone was invited to stay and play after school and have a picnic tea on the field. there was a cake sale and a uniform sale. This type of event brings the community together at minimal cost and allows everyone to be part of the school community. Thank you to FOSCS for organising.

Jubilee celebrations!

We had a wonderful day today celebrating. Mrs Greenough deserves a medal for preparing 160 individual picnic bags for the children for our celebration on the field. Each bag included a shaped jubilee cookie and a jubilee iced cupcake complete with red, white and blue sprinkles! Meanwhile, there was plenty of entertainment with the maypole out. Children took turns to have a go and we got in some incredible tangles – there was lots of teamwork and problem solving needed to sort it out! It was lovely to see children of all ages stepping up to have a go, with the older ones helping the younger ones and staying calm when we got in a mess. You can watch the celebrations by clicking here.

I.M.P.S

The Injury Minimisation Programme for Schools, or IMPS for short, was always a regular item on the Year 6 calendar which has resumed again this year. The children learn with specialist trainers who come into school and explain how to minimise the impact of minor injuries safely in an age appropriate way. They learn the basics of ensuring that of there has been an accident, they should take care of the victim and ensure that airways are free. They also learn what NOT to do to make the situation worse, which is useful!

Careers Assembly

On Tuesday 17th May we had our termly Careers Assembly with Mr Stuart George from DGS. The theme this term is organisation and Mr George encouraged the children to think about why this is an important employability skill. There were two guest speakers, Nina, a Year 10 DGS student who talked to the children about a business initiative she has been involved with in school and how the key skill of organisation was essential. Then we heard from Kate who runs her own Interior Design business, she shared with us what her role entails and the importance of organisation when running your own business. By the end of it I think everyone wanted to be an interior designer, it sounded so much fun! We also discussed how organisation is a skill which is important at school and in home life, it also runs through our Values of being reading, Respectful and Responsible.

Experience The Resurrection

On Tuesday 17th May, Year 6 visited All Saints Church for an immersive afternoon experiencing the key messages of the resurrection. Through drama and reflection, they considered the events following the crucifixion and the call to action from Jesus to his followers. Our school welcomes children from all faiths and cultural traditions, and therefore we encourage children to draw conclusions from the Christian tradition which are relevant to their own lives and to our shared vision. We want them to consider when they are called to maintain belief or called to action, and understand how the Christian story may have relevance to them regardless of their belief.

Young Voices

On Monday 16th May our choir went to the Birmingham Arena for Young Voices with 5,000 other children, and all the children are true stars! Not just in a performing sense - although they were! But also in the fact that throughout the whole day and evening they upheld the school values - they consistently modelled being Ready, Respectful and Responsible. I know that all of the staff who supported on the trip were extrememly impressed with the whole group, they were so positive, engaged and supportive of each other.

It was such a pleasure to spend the day with them The biggest reward was watching their faces showing sheer enjoyment during the performance - they gave it all they had and really did make every moment count. You can watch the video highlights by clicking here

FOSCS Jubilee Science Garden

We had loads of fun on Sunday 15th May working together to build our science garden. It was great to see so many members of our community involved, with three generations working together! Our main focus today was shifting the top solid and compost into the beds that Mr Greenough had prepared. To celebrate the jubilee, we hope to plant saplings of the trees that our house teams are named after: Oak, Maple, Birch and Ash. After a careful search we found all except an Ash sapling already growing in the grounds, so we will relocate these and make sure they are well nurtured. 

Kingfishers' Reward!

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Kingfishers enjoyed a treat on Friday 6th May. They were the class who raised the most money at the KS2 production cake sale so were invited by Mrs Potter to a short session in Forest School. They enjoyed a play and toasted marshmallows - Thank you Mrs Potter!

Easter Thanks and Prayers

Years 1-6 visited the Church for our Easter Service. Again, this was a chance to develop presentation and advocacy skills, as each class performed confidently in the church, with a focus on poetry. Year 5 read us some particularly powerful poems they had written reflecting on refugees, as we hope to welcome more to our school soon. These showed a real sense of higher calling and awareness of choosing the right response to others in need. Year 6 led us in the Easter readings.

Thank you!

Earlier this term our Careers Partner at DGS, Stuart George came and talked to the children in assembly about the employability skill 'Collaboration'. He was also joined by local Businessman Mike Foster who talked to the children about the importance of collaboration in his businesses. Whilst visiting, Mike very kindly donated 5 copies of the book 'Billy the Goat and the five pound note' by Rowan Waller, who he knows. It is a fantastic story about a goat called Billy who finds a £5 note and instead of just spending it, he uses his initiative and invests it into starting his own business. Before long Billy has multiplied his investment and is a successful businessman. These books have been shared between the Yr2 to Year 6 classes. Thank you Mike!

A Musical Performance

Performance skills are a vital part of music and it was wonderful to be able to invite parents in for this first music assembly for two years. The children who learn with iRock to play in bands, and the children who learn the piano, took turns to entertain us.  Children showed huge respect for each other as they listened intently to the performances and showed obvious appreciation for their peers. No child is ever excluded form music tuition on financial grounds in our school.

A Journey Through History

On 31st March, Year 3 and 4 put on their production of 'A Journey Through History'. This show incorporated songs, dance, music, poetry and drama all around the theme they have been studying win History this year, from pre-history with the Stone, Bronze and Iron ages, though to the Viking period. The performance was truly impressive with some really complex musical numbers and extended speeches. Children made huge progress with their presentation skills and also learned about being inclusive - some children who did not ready to perform worked hard to provide refreshments and work on the behind the scenes administrative tasks involved in a production of this scale.

 

Panto time!

On 24th March, Year 5 put on a production of a pantomime, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. They had written many of the scenes themselves. They loved dressing up and had greta confidence as they led the audience participation win true panto style - "Oh yes they did!"

This developed their skills in presentation and advocacy, giving them confidence to stand up and speak out. It was also an exercise in inclusive participation and they made sure everyone was involved and had a part to play they enjoyed and felt comfortable with.

 

   A flash of Red for Red Nose Day!                   

Friday 18th March was Red Nose Day 2022. This year we supported the charity with a non-uniform day which included a flash of red!

 

During the day all the children also took part in a house event to earn points for their team. It was 'A Red Nose and spoon Race' which was a lot of fun! A big thank you to Isla and George from Falcons who enthusiastically collected the donations on the gate and Adam and Fabian who helped run the staff 'Guess the cake' fundraiser. Finally, a huge thank you to all of you, with your contributions Sutton Courtenay School raised a whopping £283!!

 

David Johnston MP comes to visit

On Friday 4th March our MP David Johnston came to visit. You will remember that at the time of the COP 26 climate conference, the children wrote letters to world leaders and Mr Johnston forwarded them to Alok Sharma, the president of the conference. Mr Johnston came to talk to the children in person about their understanding of how they can proactively work for climate change. It is important that as other events overtake the news, we do not forget need to think very long term about the planet that our children and their children need to live on. The children met Mr Johnston in Forest School, which seemed a suitable setting. They asked lots of excellent questions, and Mr Johnston explained what governments could do to encourage sustainable solutions and to follow up on the promises made at the COP26.

We Will Rock You - joint Ridgeway production

It certainly was ‘a kinda magic’ when Ridgeway Education Trust’s performance of Ben Elton’s ‘We Will Rock You’ roared through Cockcroft Hall for four nights in February. Audiences in the Hall, and via the livestream events, were treated to a toe-tapping, anthem -waving, energetic extravaganza from St. Birinus School, Didcot Girls’ School and Sutton Courtney CofE Primary School students. Performers ranged in age from  ten years old up to eighteen and everyone, no matter how experienced or whatever their age, contributed in an enthusiastic, focused and entirely joyful way.

Having lived through a global pandemic for the last two years, students and staff alike were so excited to put this show on. The delight of the students each night, during the performance and post-performance, was a joy to behold. Sixty-two members of staff across the trust were involved in the musical, each dedicating their time and talents to make sure the show continued the tradition of amazing joint productions. Mr Dingley excelled with his band and his brilliant teaching, ensuring that singing was the highest quality. Ms Robertson directed the show with much humour, fun and huge amounts of energy, eliciting the best performances from all of the cast. The choreography by Ms Robertson and Ms Harrison was equally eye catching, with a full range of opportunities for all the dancers. At one point there were eighty five students on stage dancing to’ Crazy little thing called Love’ – what a feat!

The talent from the students was phenomenal and their commitment and hard work made the show the success it was. Bringing children and young people together from the three schools shows the strength of our Trust and the benefits for our young people of working in such close partnership and collaboration.

To those of you that were able to watch the musical either in person, or through the live streaming, thank you so much for your support. If you were unable to see the show, we hope these photos give you some idea of the excitement, fun and energy that went into ‘We Will Rock You’.

We are now all looking forward to the next production, whatever that may be!

Maria Robertson                                                  Sean Dingley

Head of Drama, Didcot Girls’ School                   RET Director of Music

 

Safer Internet Day 2022

Tuesday 8th February is Safer Internet Day. In school we don't see it as something that only gets talked about on one day a year, because teaching children to be safe when online is something which is extremely important and needs discussing and monitoring all of the time. However, it is a day when the safe use of the internet can be raised nationwide and is a reminder to everyone to check in with what their children are doing online, talk to them and seek advice and support. The website below has some good advice for parents and 'Top Tips for Under11's' which are great to use as starting points with your children, over the next week please try and find some time to talk through these with your children.

https://saferinternet.org.uk/safer-internet-day/safer-internet-day-2022

 

The Big garden Birdwatch!

The countdown is on for the Big Garden Birdwatch! 

This weekend between 28th and 30th January the RSPB are asking families to take part in monitoring which birds are seen in their garden or local park. It only takes one hour and is a lovely thing to do as a family. Please click on this link  https://www.rspb.org.uk/  to find out more. It is too late to get the postal pack but you can still sign up and download the resources. Once you have carried out your survey, you will be able to log your results on the website. 

If you take part please let me know with a short recount or photo via events@sutton-courtenay.oxon.sch.uk and your family will earn a house point for their team!

A letter from Alok Sharma

Our MP, David Johnston, sent the letters we wrote to world leaders during the 2021 Climate Conference to Alok Sharma, the leader of the conference. He sent us this letter back, encouraging us to continue to be interested and involved working towards a better future for our planet.

Experience Christmas

On Monday and Tuesday KS2 took it in turns to walk down to church to “Experience Christmas”. We spoke about the gifts that God brought into the universe and how all of them are important. We then learnt more about the shepherds in the story of the nativity. We even got to see some real gold and smell some frankincense and myrrh. We then walked back in the cold wind and rain! Despite the weather we had a great few days and thanked Reverend Helen for a brilliant experience. 

Sutton Courtenay Football Team's First Tournament!

Click on this link to find out more: 

https://www.suttoncourtenayprimary.co.uk/sporting-events/

Children In Need and The Best Dressed Bears!

Everything went spotty today as we collected for Children In Need.

The bears are back in town! After a year without them helping us to celebrate Children In Need Day, this year they were back again, getting all dressed up to come to school. In each class there was a prize for the best dressed bear (who might even be a rabbit or even, as one of our winners was, a fish). This year the prizes of metal badge and wristband were chosen from the range of Children In Need merchandise, which meant even more money going to the charity. There were some really imaginative outfits this year with the winning bears themed around the Children In Need spotty theme.

Anti-bullying week - One Kind Word

This week we have been thinking through our assemblies and our PSHCE lessons about how we are ALL responsiblefor making sure there is no bullying in our school. We have talked to the children about how if they see anything they think might be bullying, they have to call it out, and they will be backed by the staff.  It is really hard for young children to understand the difference between falling out with someone and bullying, which is more sustained and deliberate. By drawing children’s attention to the need for us all to choose kind words and to call out anyone they see not doing so, we can create a culture where bullying is not tolerated.

Remembrance Sunday

On Remembrance Sunday, Mrs Hornsey was at the War Memorial in Sutton Courtenay along with many others who gathered to pay their respects. Some of the children joined her, wearing their school jumpers, to place the wreath the school donated. Earlier in the week, at 11am on Thursday 11th, the children right across the school from the youngest to the oldest paused their lessons to hold a two minute silence in respect for soldiers who have died in conflict. Perhaps partly due to the new children we have welcomed from Afghanistan, the school community is more aware than ever of how, sadly, wars continue to be fought across the globe.

COP 26 – What does it mean for our children?

We held two assemblies to mark COP 26. In the first, one of the Ridgeway Trustees, Andrew Kaye, visited us again. He told us all about how his career in science had helped to collect some of the data that enables us to study climate change. It was fascinating to hear about how he had flown in a plane measuring the levels of methane rising across the country. This enabled the children to see the importance of science for all of us, and showed them how the early steps they are taking in science as they learn to measure the outcomes of simple experiments accurately are the foundations of change in the future.

 

In the second, we talked about what we would like to say to the world’s leaders as they left Glasgow and the fine details of the negotiations took place. I challenged the children to write a letter to the world’s leaders expressing their feelings about the decisions ahead. I was deeply impressed by the response. So many children wrote such passionate letters. No time was given in school to do this – they did this in their own time because they care so much. I hope you will find inspiration from watching this short video made from some of the children reading out one sentence each from their letter.

Watch the video here

 

It is so important that children do not feel powerless – there is much we can all do on a small scale. The message we will be really stressing in school is that we can all help reduce waste by simply taking better care of our things. This links back again to our value of respect. Lost jumpers, coats and water bottles are wasteful. Broken toys must go in the bin. So lets take care of all that we have, and respect the planet as we go!

House Fun Run

On Tuesday 5th October, children in Robins through to Falcons took part in a House Fun Run. They had to run as many laps in 15 minutes around a course that involved hurdles, ditches, and a tyre obstacle. Lots of fun was had by everyone even with the odd shower of rain!

Watch this space for the results which will be coming after they are announced to the children in Assembly on Friday. A Huge thank you to the Event Sports Leaders from Falcons: Iyla, Taylor, Jacob, Charlie, Nathaniel, Scarlett, Adam and Maisie who supported to set up and run the event but most importantly to encourage the younger children. 

Sports Day 2021!

Following 2020 where sports day didn't happen, it was lovely to come together on the field for sports day on Wednesday 14th July this year. It wasn't quite the same as we were unable to invite families but the sun shone, the teams cheered and lots of fun was had!

It was very close and the results were:

1st with 250 points - Oak Team 

2nd with 240 points - Birch team

3rd with 214 points - Maple Team

4th with 210 points - Ash Team

Well done everyone!

House Team Sporting Challenge - May 2021

What fun we had!

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On Tuesday 11th May, we battled through the rain showers and all took part in a House Sporting Challenge. There were 4 challenges: The sprint relay, the football dribble and shoot, the bean bag target throw and the obstacle relay.

We all had a great morning and all classes and teams showing real resilience. The results for the whole school when totalled across the morning were: 

 

1st with 48points - Maple

2nd (joint) with 46 points - Ash and Birch

3rd with 42 points - Oak

 

If you would like to see how each class did, please click on the link below to watch the results video which was made for and shared with all the children in school.

Video Link - House Competition Results

 

Easter Hat Day!

A big thanks to Foscs for organising this event to raise money for our school! Easter Hat Day was a lovely way to end the term and was supported by so many families. We were so impressed by the creations it made it very difficult to choose a winner for each class - but here they are:

Barn Owls - Lincoln

Robins - Jack

Kestrels - Joey 

Kingfishers - Archie

Wrens - Isabella

Red kites - Spencer

Falcons - Scarlett

Staff - Mrs Hutchinson!

Their photos and many more can be see in the Easter Hat Procession slide show below!

Easter Hat Parade

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Red Nose Day 2021

Well Friday 19th March marked Comic Relief 2021 (Red Nose Day) and what a day of fun and laughs we had! We followed this year's theme of 'Superpowers at the ready' and many children came to school dressed as Superheroes (Attached is a short video slideshow of just a few of our superheroes). 
 

We earned house points by telling a joke to our class and raised a whopping £255.82!!

 

Maple - 18 points

Oak - 17 points

Ash - 16 points

Birch - 13 points

 

Thank you everyone for your support. smiley

Red Nose Day!

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