This is proving to be a very busy term for us at Ferry Lane. As you know, we had an Ofsted inspection in September and we are now working on our action plan and making sure we address all the areas that were identified for us to focus on improving. One thing we have felt very grateful for in this challenging time is the trust and support given to us by parents and carers. We thank you sincerely for this.
As part of our improvements we have appointed new staff including a SENCo and four part time teaching assistants. This will enable us to better support children throughout the school and in Early Years and KS1 in particular. We will be having a particular focus on speaking and listening and literacy so watch out for ‘Talk Boost’ and ‘Impact Literacy’ initiatives (amongst others) which will be starting soon.
You may have noticed we have made some structural changes to the Nursery outdoor area and we are pleased with the improvements we have seen there. The new artificial grass has made the area much more usable and we can use it more easily when it is wet. We have seen that the children are much more actively involved with their outdoor learning and that they are making better progress as a result. We hope parents and carers agree!
Reception class have also changed their outdoor routines and we think this is also having a positive effect on learning both inside and outside the classroom. The Reception class assembly on Divali was very well presented and helped to celebrate an important community festival.
Phonics has been given a much bigger focus in Early Years (Reception and Nursery) and in Years 1, 2 and 3. In Years 1-3 we are now having mixed groups for phonics lessons so we can match the children’s needs better and make accelerated progress in the sessions. Our phonics scheme (Letters and Sounds) has been augmented by the addition of Jolly Phonics which we are using in the mixed class sessions taking place three times a week. Children are particularly enjoying learning the songs and their actions. You can see videos on www.jollylearning.co.uk where you can also get ideas for follow up work you might like to try at home!
In Key Stage 2, we have been able to keep going with the weekly French lessons thanks to the hard work of M Jutel and Mr Mackie. We enjoyed hearing about M Jutel’s home country (France) and also Ms Verkuelen (Germany) in our European Languages Assembly. Children in Years 5 and 6 are also writing penpal letters to children in our partner schools in Oslo, Norway and Palafrugell, Spain, where we hope to be able to send a lucky few children to visit in the second and third terms (we will do our best!). In the meantime, please visit our shared blog where you can see some of the art work that all classes did for the project. It was really tricky choosing which work to put on the blog as there were so many excellent pictures to choose from! You can see our art galley here at www.place.ferrylane.net and please do leave us a comment! We looked at Spanish, Norwegian and English artists…
As a response to parental suggestions, we have been trying to raise the profile of our celebrations of different cultures. In assembly we have celebrated Divali (Reception class) and Eid (Year 6) as well as having parent coffee mornings to celebrate the festivals The children also wrote newsletters to celebrate both festivals, which you can read by clicking on the icon on this page. (All this term’s school newsletters are to be found there). Thank you to all who donated food items to the Harvest Festival; these were donated to elderly people living on the Ferry lane Estate. They asked us to pass on their thanks. We also really enjoyed the International Food event for Eid where we raised funds for the PTA (thank you all for delicious food and good times!). Looking ahead to Christmas, we will be having the usual Christmas Lunch and Class Parties as well as having a Carol Concert where we will raise funds for Shelterbox, this term’s charity. You can find out more here www.shelterbox.org. We hope to raise enough to fund at least one and hopefully two boxes which we can then track as they are deployed to an area of need around the world.
We have also had a bigger focus on Black History Month this October and have displayed work from all classes (1-6) in the foyer. Years 1 and 2 went to the British Museum to take part in African Maths and African storytelling. Other classes found out about famous black politicians, sports people and historical figures as part of their learning on this topic. Please do come and look at our display! Or you can click on the photos below to enlarge them…
Our eco-team has been looking at recycling and waste with a view to making this better in our school and they led a very informative assembly with lessons for us all to reduce, reuse and recycle!
Parents have also been very busy at Ferry Lane with the ESOL classes being oversubscribed and very well attended! We thank HALS (Haringey Adult Learning Services) for organising the teachers and the crèche workers. We also really have to say a huge THANK YOU to the Stay and Play parents who have worked really well alongside the extra children and crèche workers for this term. We hope to be able to offer more adult learning opportunities next term too. The science coffee mornings run by Lloyd Forster from Haringey’s School Improvement Service were very successful and gave parents lots of ideas on how to work on scientific activities at home.
Parents Evening was well attended and the Topic Exhibition gave you and overview of the work we have done on our cross-curricular topics last half term (these were all science themed). This half term our topics are all Historical and several classes have shared their work in their assemblies (who can forget Year 4′s Tudor Axe Factor assembly last week?). Or indeed the first half term’s Year 2 Food Rap, Year 3 retelling Anthony Browne’s scary forest story with a fairytale ending and Year 5 showing us all how to make the best use of the new projector and screen in the main hall by researching Earth Sun and Moon, creating their own powerpoints and presenting them independently!
We have also had support from our local shops with Asda giving us a welcome donation of £100 as their chosen local school and Tesco giving us a box of goodies. Thank you to both shops and it was especially great for our children to meet our Tottenham MP David Lammy!
Finally, our chickens are doing well. They have really grown their feathers since they arrived here as rescue hens. There were some problems earlier in the term with one chicken being unhappy but a brief holiday at Mr Mackie’s house has enabled her to regain her strength and she will soon be back at school with the other two chickens. Thank you to all who baked, sold cakes and cleared up after the Bake Sale this term, we raised enough money to order a new run so the chickens will be more comfortable!