Latest News Archive

Autumn Term, 2015

Christmas Productions

What a wonderful afternoon and evening we had on Tuesday! Once again, the children amazed and delighted us with their excellent singing and playing, fabulous dancing and choreography, brilliant acting and clear speaking. Photo CD’s are still available to purchase from the office for £5 per CD.

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Class 2 and 3 Sandwich Making Workshops

We have had some fantastic food technology experiences this week, with free workshops provided by Warburton’s. The Class 2 and Class 3 children learned about the company and breadmaking, before designing and making healthy sandwiches to take home. “It was really, really fun because we got to make our own sandwiches,” said Fin. “I liked watching the film because it told you all about how Warburton’s made bread and the history of the company,” added Melissa. “I liked the taste-testing,” said Isaac.

Y1 and Y2 Multiskills Festival

It was an absolute pleasure to take Y1 and Y2 children to Teign School yesterday for a sporting event organised by Y10 and Y11 pupils. There were ten challenges for them to try, ranging from aiming tennis balls into targets to running and dodging around cones. The children did us proud in quite a hot, noisy sports hall and it was great to see their skills develop as each activity progressed. Thank you so much to Mrs O’Brien for accompanying us. Well done everyone!

School Council’s Children in Need Fundraising, November 2015

What a wonderful day it was on Friday, and didn’t the School Council do an amazing job? It was great to see everyone joining in, wearing their pyjamas and onesies to school. In addition, I have rarely seen so many cakes on a cake stall! Thank you. Today the councillors counted up the money raised and found that our school raised £311.04! Thank you all for your support for the school council and their fundraising.

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Norway Cultural Champion Visit, November 2015

P1030309This term we have been learning about Norway in our Geography lessons. Earlier this week a Norwegian cultural champion, fru Marks, came in to school to talk to us about her home country. She brought in lots of things to show, including photographs, books and traditional clothing. She read a story to Class 2 and taught them how to count to 10. With Class 3 she spoke about the history of Norway and its occupation during WW2 – one of the reasons why Norwegian National Day is celebrated so fervently on May 17th each year with parades and parties. People still remember what it was like to have no democracy and no freedom. She answered all of our questions and made us all laugh with her funny stories.

For example, Class 2 wanted to know:
Were you ever scared by the trolls in fairy stories when you were little?
What do Norwegians eat for breakfast?
Does fish soup really stink?
Do you enjoy skiing?
Have you ever seen the Northern Lights and been inside the Arctic Circle?

Class 3 children wanted to know similar things, including:
How often does it snow?
Is speaking Norwegian hard to learn?
What are the favourite sports in Norway?
Are the baking facilities the same as in England and do the cakes taste the same?
Have you stayed in an ice palace?

Both classes wanted to know: which is better, Norway or England? Fru Marks was very diplomatic and replied that both countries are beautiful and wonderful in different ways. Thank you, fru Marks, for an interesting and enjoyable visit.

PTFA Bonfire Party, November 2015

What a wonderful time we had last Friday! I think about a hundred and fifty of us enjoyed the tasty hot dogs, scrummy cakes, delicious mulled cider and sinful hot chocolate (among other things). The bonfire was a triumph this year and it was fabulous to see the children having such fun in the dark, running around and playing with their glowsticks and torches, gazing into the flames and slipping in the mud. There are many, many parents to thank – I have no idea who donated the delicious cakes, but thank you to all of you clever bakers. Mr Peters, Mr Jenkin, Mrs Peters, Ms Holloway, Mrs Todd, Mr Probets, Mrs Blake and Mrs Greenman all helped on the night with Mrs Squire, Mr Best, Mrs Crumby and Mrs Hetherington all helping with the preparations beforehand. I do hope I haven’t forgotten anyone! Thank you all for your time and generosity.

Team Challenge, October 2015

We had a lovely afternoon at our annual Team Challenge event last week, even though many children were off school with the bug. We haven’t been able to invite spectators for several years, as it has always been rained off. Not so on Friday! Thank you to all of you who were able to join us. Can you remember our six sporting values? Passion, determination, respect, teamwork, self-belief and honesty. The children demonstrated these ideals brilliantly. I especially enjoyed their team chants/dances/songs! Well done to everyone, but to the Y6 team captains (Tess, William, Harry, Lara and Ben) in particular for their leadership.

Class 1 Trip to Castle Drogo, October 2015

Class 1 children have been learning about ‘Houses and Homes’ this term. They went to Castle Drogo last week to explore that rather impressive residence. Afterwards Ms Forsyth said, “I was so impressed by the children’s listening skills, their excellent behaviour and good manners. We had a fabulous day! We particularly enjoyed hunting for jelly moulds in the gardens.” Well done children! Thanks to Ms Gardener, Mrs Greenman, Mrs Hoskin, Mrs Jenner, Mrs O’Brien, Mrs Phipps and Ms Shearer who accompanied Ms Forsyth and Mrs Taylor on the day.

 

Great West Run Schools Challenge, October 2015

It was so lovely to hear the children talking about the Great West Run in assembly yesterday, and to admire the medals they were awarded. Apparently there were over 1000 children participating; what an experience that must have been! Well done to all of our runners and thank you to Mrs Crumby, Mr Edwards, Ms Gossett and Mrs Jenkin for accompanying the children. Our special thanks go to Ms Farress of course, for organising Running Club every week and for taking the lead on the day too. We really appreciate it!

 

Harvest Festival, October 2015

Thank you all for your Harvest gifts, and to those of you who were able to come to join us on Friday morning at St Mary’s church. The children did brilliantly; I received many positive comments afterwards, so our congregation clearly enjoyed it too! Graham Mayer and the churchwardens were overwhelmed by your generosity – not only by the goods donated but also by the £200 collection, which has been sent off to Tearfund’s Refugee Crisis Fund. Thank you all.

 

Rugby World Cup Extravaganza, September 2015

What a wonderful afternoon we had yesterday at Newton Abbot Rugby Club! 31 local schools sent teams and there were about 350 children competing. The event was extremely well organised, with each team playing 4 or 5 matches in the group stage, with play-off matches after that. All children competed brilliantly and felt that they got better and better the more matches they played. They typically scored more tries, were better at positioning themselves on the pitch and worked better as a team as the afternoon wore on.
Our Y5/6 teams came 6th, 9th and 12th. Our Y3/4 children were particularly successful, coming 3rd and 6th in their competitions. Both teams were commended for their enthusiasm, concentration and effort and were the only teams to be given special prizes: Rugby World Cup wristbands and keyrings.
One of our pupils won the highest honour: player of the day. Freddie stood out for his natural instincts for the game. As he is a Y3 pupil, he has only played the game a few times, yet was excellent in defence. He grabbed tag after tag and was able to read the game well, positioning himself well to thwart the opposition’s attacking moves.

“Great to see Dunsford’s entire Yr 3, 4, 5 and 6 at our annual Tag Festival yesterday. Deservedly the school’s younger age groups won the prize for embodying the core values of our great game – Teamwork, Respect, Discipline, Sportsmanship and Enjoyment (the last one being the most important for all of us!) It was also fantastic to be able to recognise a young man who tried his best throughout the day, smiled a lot and, for us, deservedly won the ‘Player of the Day’ award. If my aged memory serves me right, his name was Freddie. Although he seemed a little overwhelmed (especially meeting a 6ft+ Springbok International), the fact that his schoolmates cheered and shouted his name when he won will be a memorable experience and one which will give him confidence and a sense of achievement for the future.
Thanks again for supporting the event and for fully entering into the spirit of the day. Your pupils are a great reflection on the school, the teachers, staff and parents – well done!
Best wishes,
Phillip Laws, Schools Liaison NARFC”

We were all so very proud of Freddie as his name was called out and he came to the front to accept his glass trophy from the SSP’s special guest Thinus Delport (a rugby union wing and fullback player who played for Gloucester, the Worcester Warriors and South Africa). Very well done!

Summer Term, 2015

Dunsford Show 2015

School Sportsmark Success, July 2015

Gold Sportsmark logo 14-15We are delighted to tell you that we have just been awarded a GOLD Sportsmark, in recognition of the breadth and quality of our PE and Sporting provision. For the last two years we have only qualified for Bronze awards, but aimed for the top this year!
Mr Stewart is our PE Subject Leader, and has worked hard with the rest of the staff, Mr Flint, Ms Kilburn and other members of the School Sports Partnership, volunteer parents and governors to satisfy the rigorous criteria. These focus on several key areas: pupil participation in sport, the provision of support for talented young people, opportunities for competition, developing the workforce and the links with local sports clubs.
This is a great achievement for our small school and is made possible by us all working together to provide the children with rich and engaging opportunities. Thank you very much to Mrs Best for running Netball Club all year, to Ms Farress and her team of helpers for Running Club, to Mr Williams for his work with various lunchtime clubs and to all of the staff, parents and governors who have driven children to competitions and festivals throughout the year. Let’s hope we can build on this success next year.

Summer Concert, July 2015

I’m sure I must say this every year, but what a talented lot of pupils we have! On Friday afternoon we had a packed audience of parents, extended family and friends over in the Village Hall for our summer concert. We were treated to excellent singing, instrument playing, dancing, mime, poetry recital, taekwondo and magic in a packed and varied programme. It is lovely to see different groups performing, but also special when individuals have a chance to shine. The Y6 children ran an excellent café for us all – I’ll let you know how much they’ve raised as soon as they’ve had a chance to count it all up. Please follow this link for all the photos of this wonderful afternoon.

Summer Concert 2015.

Sports Day and Swimming Gala, July 2015

Thank you to all of the parents, extended family members and friends of the school who were able to join us last Wednesday. The weather was not kind to us, but we managed to have a great day nonetheless! The children were amazing, demonstrating great enthusiasm, perseverance and team spirit. Well done to the Green Team for triumphing in the Swimming Gala and to the Red Team for coming first in the Sports Day. Thank you very much to the PTFA for providing ice lollies at the end of the day for all of the children. Please follow the links to view the fantastic photos taken by Mr Parker.

Sports Day 2015       Swimming Gala 2015

Great Camp Out, July 2015

Mr Stewart organised another Great Camp out on Friday night for Y4,5,6 children! Although there was thunder and lightning, the whole evening was well supported by staff and parent volunteers, and the children had a marvellous time!

Great Camp Out

Teign Valley Learning Community Arts Festival, June 2015

On Thursday 25th June we took part in the Teign Valley Learning Community Arts Fest. This is an annual celebration of arts in our local area. We joined children from 6 other local primary schools at Teign School to put on a fabulous concert for our families and friends.

School Sports Partnership Athletics Final at Stover, June 2015

Out of 56 schools, Dunsford successfully reached the School Sports Partnership Athletics Finals held at Stover School. The children who attended competed in various events and showed great enthusiasm. The year 3 and 4 team came 9th overall and the year 5 and 6 team came joint 5th overall. Well done!

Junior Lifeskills in Exeter for Year 6, June 2015

Year 6 were invited to take part in Junior Lifeskills training in Exeter. They learnt about the dangers of fire, electricity, misuse of alcohol and hoax calls. They were instructed in efficient hand-washing and how to keep safe online. Year 6 children also learnt about the role of beach lifeguards and the coastguard.

Curriculum Evening for Parents, June 2015

What a fantastic evening we had on Thursday last week, even though it drizzled quite a bit and there was a heavy downpour at one point! It was lovely to see so many of you there: we had 26 parents from 19 families with us, along with 34 children! Here is a small selection of comments from the parent feedback we received, which was resoundingly positive:

“Was a really lovely atmosphere tonight.  There was so much life in the pond, the marshmallows were yummy and the drums were brilliant – something for the PTFA shopping list!?”  – Mrs W

“Great to see the extra activities the children experience and enthusiastic teachers. The children seemed to enjoy it all and are very lucky.” – Mr P

“Thank you so much for a really fun evening! The kids were so proud to show their activities & are obviously really enjoying their hands on outdoor experiences.” – Mrs C

“I really enjoyed this event – thanks for putting it on.” – Mr P

“We enjoyed the Forest school, the games on the field, the pond dipping and the drumming! You have a wonderful space outside, keep making the most of it.” – Ms T

“Fantastic! I always forget how lucky the kids are to have the facilities they have.” – Mr G

“J said it would be fun – and it was! Thank you.” – Mr M

“Great night, enjoyed it all.” – Anon

“This was a lovely evening – drumming and Dartmoor 3ball. I really enjoyed the Forest school and the fire, I think I enjoyed that the best. The guitar playing was lovely. The children look very happy.” – Mrs P

“Really fun, loved seeing the pond as I didn’t know it was there.” – Anon

“Fantastic insight into the activities open to the children. The staff are so enthusiastic and the kids get so caught up in the activities as a result.” – Mrs D

“Great fun to join in with the children playing on the field and the guitar tuition from Mr Parker. Note to self – I must practise before next time!” – Mrs S

“Thank you for a fun evening, marshmallows/games were a great hit with my son. Shame about the rain but it didn’t spoil our fun.” – Mrs P

“Great evening with so much fun – loved the drumming. Great to understand the activities the children talk about.” – Mrs B

“Wonderful evening. Really enjoyed joining in with all the activities.” – Mrs C

“A really good opportunity for us to get a real “taste” of the special activities this school is able to offer. Also a really positive experience for the children to take ownership of their experiences and “show off” their school to us parents.” – Ms B

“Drums great to listen to and fund to do! Creating a fire without matches – really pleased to see them using survival skills but also learning to treat fire responsibly and with respect. Great fun!” – Mr and Mrs K

French Residential, June 2015

One lovely weekend in June,  six adventurous KS2 children (Ben, Archie, Christopher, Lara, Hannah and Polly) went on a French Exchange with 12 children from Doddi, our neighbouring school. This trip was organised with the help of the local twinning associations in Dunsford and in Normandy.  The children travelled by coach to Portsmouth and then by ferry to Caen. They were met at the port by their host families. The children stayed in pairs, getting totally immersed in the French way of life. Several families spoke little English, so it was a good opportunity to practise words and phrases we have learned in class. The children experienced several communal activities and enjoyed a visit to a French Primary School. They also found plenty to spend their Euros on during a shopping trip to Caen!

Our thanks go to Mrs Bastin, Mrs Elworthy and Mrs Evans for accompanying the children. They kept everything running smoothly. Thanks also to both Twinning Associations for supporting the experience, but mainly to the staff at Doddi School (Mrs Evans and Mrs Lancaster in particular) for organising and leading the trip.

This is a copy of an article printed in the local paper in Normandy. What a lovely write up!

Comité de Jumelage «Entre Forêts»

Echange «jeunes» du 6 au 9 juin 2015

18 jeunes anglais, âgés de 9 à 11 ans, originaires des communes de Dunsford et Doddiscombsleigh ont eu la chance de vivre 4 jours de dépaysement total.

Hébergés dans des familles de Boulon, Fresney le Puceux, Les Moutiers en Cinglais, Mutrécy et Saint Laurent de Condel, ces jeunes ont pu profiter d’une immersion totale en famille.

Après un accueil chaleureux, la journée du dimanche fut consacrée à des activités de loisirs permettant de délier les «langues» et d’instaurer des échanges entre les enfants Français et Anglais. Pour terminer cette première journée, toutes les familles se sont réunies pour partager un moment convivial lors d’un dîner.

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La matinée du lundi a été l’occasion pour nos jeunes anglais de découvrir, au sein des regroupements scolaires de Boulon /Fresney et celui de Saint Laurent, la vie des élèves français. En début d’après-midi, nos anglais se sont rendus à Caen par le bus vert pour acheter des souvenirs.

Le mardi matin, c’était déjà le départ, la larme à l’oeil.

Pour la plupart d’entre eux, ce fut la première expérience d’un pays étranger, la découverte d’une traversée en ferry et d’une séparation familiale.

Ce fut un séjour riche d’expériences, qui grâce à l’appui des enseignants et des Associations de Parents d’élèves, a été vécu dans la bonne humeur et la convivialité.

Une osmose parfaite qui permet d’envisager le prochain échange de 2016 vers l’Angleterre en toute sérénité.

Follow this link for exciting news about our writing competition winners!

Slapton Ley Residential, May 2015

What a wonderful Residential the Y4,Y5 and Y6 children had before Half Term. The children are full of stories about the experiences they’ve had and we are delighted with how well the children got on together and embraced every new opportunity. More details and photos will be uploaded soon.

Back at school, Class 2 children also had an exciting, enriching week. The Y2/3 children were at Fingle Woods on Monday and Tuesday, then working towards a Woodland Trust ‘Green Tree Award’  here on site. Do take a look at Matt Parkin’s ‘Fingle Woods blog.

Please follow this link for more photos.

Class 1 also had a fun filled week with lots of different activities. They planted peas and lettuces, made vegetable soup, had a picnic in the park, visited Bridford Woodland Park, went on a treasure hunt and made newspaper trees.

Please follow this link for more photos.

Forest Schools

At school, we like to make the best possible use of our fabulous outdoor spaces – our wild garden, large pond, field and woodland. The children love being outdoors and enjoy every opportunity to learn in the fresh air.

We are in the process of setting up a Forest School on our site, with the support of our PTFA and a grant from the Ernest Cook Trust. A Forest School programme is an inspirational process, which offers all learners regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands-on learning experiences in a woodland or natural environment with trees.

All pupils from YR to Y6 have experienced a taste of Forest School in last term’s Wild Week. Our oldest pupils are the first to enjoy a weekly programme, though this will be in place for all children from September. Here is a taste of the children’s views:

“Forest School makes us like the wood more and makes us feel like we are in the wild. It also teaches us about the environment, how we should take care of it and about the plants and animals that share our planet with us. It means we are not stuck in doors and look forward to going to school more because we know it is on.”

“When I am in Forest School I feel that my attitude for working improves as we have so many team-building activities. I love the feeling of the warm fire on my face and seeing all the wonderful amber and crimson flames. I feel proud to be in a school with great activities.”

“Throughout the week I can’t stop thinking about what activity we will do in Forest School. I love whittling our sticks for our delicious marshmallows. I love the feeling you get when you’re out in the woods; it makes you feel free.”

“Forest School is really fun and we look forward to it every week. It’s a privilege to be up in the wood, outside when everyone else is doing lessons. We love being outside in the wood. We really enjoy being able to use tools we wouldn’t be allowed to use normally. We really love all the activities in the woods. It makes us glad to be part of Dunsford School.”

“I look forward to Forest School each week. I love working with axes and saws and generally being productive for the camp. I like it when we do things that involve knives and sharpening sticks. The teachers are amazingly dedicated and we appreciate that. The sessions add a bit of flavour to school life.”

Spring Term, February 2015

I am delighted to tell you that Dr Symonds (Mari and Meg’s dad) has bought 100 pairs of ‘Eclipse Safe Solar Glasses’, so that we can all view the eclipse safely. Thank you so much, Matt! We have talked about viewing the sun safely with the children today, so they should all know not to stare at it without protection on as they walk to school. The full leaflet from the R.A.S. is available at the end of this text. Do take a look – there are ideas for experiments we can carry out on the day, which might involve some everyday equipment being brought in from home (colander, binoculars etc). Fingers crossed for clear skies!

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Paralympics

Yesterday Archie, Ben, Sid and Joshua took part in a Paralympic Festival held at Teign School. “It was really fun,” said Archie. “We did some warm up games then three different activities which were seated volleyball, badminton and boccia. I really enjoyed the badminton because I was really good at it and I won a netball because I bounced the shuttlecock 63 times on the racquet, beating every other competitor.” Well done to all four boys – Mrs Cole said they represented our school brilliantly.

Handball Match Report – By Mr Williams, Team Coach

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Since the start of term, children from Year 3&4 and Year 5&6 have been developing their skill in the game of Handball.  It is part Netball, part Football and part Water Polo with an awful lot of running thrown in. The children who have been coming to the lunchtime practice sessions have become The Dunsford Tigers.

tigers

This has culminated in the Teign Valley tournament, a competition of the primary schools in the Teign Valley area, with the top two teams going forward tothe SSP Finals.

 Year 5/6

On a wet and cold evening, the players fought incredibly hard, giving every thing they had. All players were exhausted by the end!

They came close, so very close, with Team Fang finishing 6th and Team Claw finishing joint 2nd; however on goal difference the 2nd place became a 3rd.

The players, although understandablydisappointed, should takeheart in the great skill and courage they have shown today along with the massive work effort they have put in since the start of term.

The Team Captains Lily and Eve were charged with the defensive duties and continuously made the crucial tackle or interception that stopped an opposition attack and turned it into one of our own.It takes a strong character to play such a role, as you always need to put the efforts of the team ahead of any personal goal scoring glory!

Lily on Team Fang was joined by Hannah B, Zoe Isabelle, Ailsa and Michael, all working very hard in stopping attacks, then going forward making quick passes looking for Leo who more often than not scored!

On Team Claw, Sam, Harry and William combined many times as a deadly trio, either going over the top, down the line or through the middle to score an incredible amount of goals.

Lastly we come to the goalkeepers, on the rare occasion that the opposition had a shot, Rosa and Ben were equal to all but the luckiest shots!Trying to stop a ball thrown from 3 meters away is not the easiest task in the world. In addition the pass from the keeper to the outfield player is the most important pass (as it presents a goal scoring chance for the opposition if it is intercepted).I cannot remember any missed passes by our goal keepers in the whole tournament.

The teams took bumps and scrapes all evening. Inparticular, Sam took a cut to the leg early on; on another occasion Ben saved with his face twice in quick succession. Both kept going!  Premiership football players should take note!

As the tournament progressed the teams improved with each game. In their last game, team Claw won 7-0.  With a few more games under their belt, second place would have been a certainty.

Year 3/4

Year 3&4 played last week, there was no rain that night, in fact there was nothing at all to dampen Dunsford’s evening. Both teams were the perfect combination of speed, power and accuracy. Team Claw won all their games and came 1st, and Team Fang came a close 2nd.  Both are off to the SSP Finals.

The Captains of their teams, Lucy and Ruby, marshaled the defense, always making sure they were back to protect the goal. Both were always the first to run back, being captain has somedrawbacks; in Handball it is lots and lots of running!

On Team Claw, Lucypicked out the midfield dynamo (that is Jack) or the NFL quarterback (that is Owen) whose long ball over the top of the hastily retreating opposition consistently found James waiting to catch, turn and score – which he did over and over again. In goal Sophie,with the reflexes of an angry cat, kept everything out – only letting in 2 goals in the whole tournament.

For Team Fang, Ella was everywhere, in particular popping up time and time again near our goal to accept the pass from our goalkeeper (a very important pass!) The dynamos were Wilf and Max, running and bouncing the ball and either shooting or passing to Martha orChristopher,who bothshowed great composure in front of goal. The Goalkeeper Joe had everything sewn up, making stop after stop. Nothing the opposition threw at him was a bother – the only distraction was whether to wear glovesor not!

With Dunsford in the final, we would welcome as many parents as possible to come and support the teams. Do join us at South Dartmoor Community College on Tuesday 24th March in the morning. Very exciting!

GO TIGERS!

Clubs at Dunsford

At Dunsford Community Primary School, we not only focus on helping the children to attain the best possible academic outcomes, but we also strive to provide them with a broad, balanced, exciting and enriching education. To this end we have a wide range of extra-curricular clubs and opportunities available (which are run by staff members, parent volunteers or governors). We like to ring the changes with some of these clubs, though there are many perennial favourites of course (such as Recorder Club, Book Club, Netball Club and Guitar Club)!

New this term is our Chess Club. Several children requested a Chess Club, so with the support of one of our governors, we were able to set one up. We started with just 6 players, some who knew how to play and others who were complete novices. We are steadily getting more and more children wanting to join in, but we don’t quite have enough boards! If you have a chess set at home which you would be happy to donate, then please do get in touch.

Other recent additions are our Streetdance Clubs. These take place in the Village Hall and they are extremely popular. We have a specialist dance teacher working with us at the moment; she runs one club for the KS2 children and another for the KS1 children. Streetdance seems to involve lots of loud music and ‘cool’ moves – they all come back to school on a high!

All primary schools in our local school sports partnership area collaborate over aspects of the PE curriculum, so that there can easily be wider opportunities for the children. We are all teaching Handball at the moment. There are inter-school festivals and competitions for the children to enter, usually at Teign School. Another of our governors is running Handball Clubs for the Y3/4 and Y5/6 children. The weather is not always kind, but the children are keen and it is good to make use of our field all through the winter months.

Our new 3D Modelling Club is attracting many children who enjoy creating models out of different materials. The PTFA recently donated a large box of Lego to the children, which they are already making great use of.

In Craft Club this term, the children are exploring printing. They are using a variety of techniques and media to create different effects. I believe they might be planning to make some gifts to take home at the end of term… don’t want to spoil the surprise!

We are grateful for all of the volunteers who give up their time to put on clubs for the children. As you can see, there is something for everyone and there is always a lot going on at our busy, thriving school.

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Dear Headteacher,

We were delighted to see your school listed in the top 20 performing schools in you local authority.  It was pleasing
to find so many small schools coming at the top of the League Table.

It shows that small schools are achieving outstanding results despite many politicians and those in authority
believing that schools of your size do not have the range of expertise etc. necessary to provide outstanding education.
You, like us, know that this is far from the truth.

Congratulations and well done, keep up the good work.

Yours sincerely,

Barbara Taylor
Secretary

Spring Term,  January 2015

Y5/6 Netball Tournament

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Our Netball Team competed in a large tournament on Tuesday morning, accompanied by their coaches Mrs Best and Mrs Chambers. There were XXX teams altogether, so each team competed against 5 others, with the winners of each group going through to the semi-finals.

Our scores were as follows:

Against Buckfastleigh – drew 1:1 (Lottie scored)

Against Blackpool – lost 1:0 (a really close game)

Against Chudleigh Knighton – lost 6:0 (a really strong team who went through to the semi- final / final)

Against St Josephs – lost 6:1 (Zoe scored)

Against Trinity – lost 5:0

Mrs Best said that, “despite the scorelines, the girls played fairly and with determination. Unfortunately, most of the other schools clearly play a lot more Netball and have much taller players than us – even our tallest player, Rosa, felt a bit small! Overall, I think the girls enjoyed playing and it was a good experience to play against other teams.  They behaved impeccably and followed the rotations sheet, so it was a pleasure to take them out to represent the school.”

Well done everyone, and thank you Karen and Sue for taking them and for running the club in all weather!

Secretary of State for Schools

We are very proud of all of our pupils’ achievements, whether they be artistic, creative, musical, sporting or academic. Our pupils have attained highly at every level for many years, but last year’s Y6 pupils did particularly well. We were delighted to receive this letter from the Secretary of State for Schools last month, and wanted to share it with you all.

Letter from Secretary of State for Schools

This term our younger children are learning about ‘Alarms and Sirens’. The children have helped to plan this topic and have asked to make a fire engine out of a large cardboard box that they can sit in! They know what colours they want to paint it, the buttons they want to add and have ideas for adding windows and a ladder. They also want to make alarms and find out what real alarms look like on the inside. Some of the questions they have posed are: ‘What did fire engines look like 100 years ago?’, ‘How are alarms powered?’ and ‘What are alarms made of?’ We hope to answer all these questions and more during this exciting topic.

In Science, the older children will learn all about materials and how they change. They will explore the properties of solids, liquids and gases and will conduct lots of experiments with melting and heating. They will be visiting a recycling centre to find out how materials are sorted and reused. In History they will find out about what life in Roman times was like, and how our lives today have been influenced by some of the changes that the Romans brought to Britain. They will work with clay and design ‘Roman-style’ clay pots. In DT they will make bridges and testing them, to find out which is the strongest.

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JOB VACANCY: Kitchen Assistant – (2 hrs per day, 2 or 3 days per week, term time only, approx. £6.45 p/h)

We are looking for a Kitchen Assistant to serve school meals to the children and to clear away afterwards. The food is freshly made at the Rodean Restaurant in Kenton. Full training will be provided. The hours are 11.15am – 1.15pm and the job is for either two or three days per week. An application form, person specification and job description are all available to download from our website. For an informal discussion, please do feel free to telephone or email us.

Application forms should be returned by Monday 12th January at 9am and interviews will be later that week.

Spring Term 2015

This term our younger children are learning about ‘Alarms and Sirens’. The children have helped to plan this topic and have asked to make a fire engine out of a large cardboard box that they can sit in! They know what colours they want to paint it, the buttons they want to add and have ideas for adding windows and a ladder. They also want to make alarms and find out what real alarms look like on the inside. Some of the questions they have posed are: ‘What did fire engines look like 100 years ago?’, ‘How are alarms powered?’ and ‘What are alarms made of?’ We hope to answer all these questions and more during this exciting topic.

In Science, the older children will learn all about materials and how they change. They will explore the properties of solids, liquids and gases and will conduct lots of experiments with melting and heating. They will be visiting a recycling centre to find out how materials are sorted and reused. In History they will find out about what life in Roman times was like, and how our lives today have been influenced by some of the changes that the Romans brought to Britain. They will work with clay and design ‘Roman-style’ clay pots. In DT they will make bridges and testing them, to find out which is the strongest.

Changes Topic plan Y2s Spring 2015

Changes Topic plan Y3s Spring 2015

Changes Topic plan Y4s Spring 2015

Changes Topic plan Y5 Hawthorn Spring 2015

Changes Topic plan Y5 Y6 Oak Spring 2015

Autumn Term 2014 – 100 Years Ago

A Christmas Truce 2014

Whoops-A-Daisy Angel 2014

Y3/4 Tag Rugby Final 2014

WW1 Poppy Art Day

Francis Fulford Visit

This term we have an exciting whole school topic, looking at what happened locally, nationally and internationally 100 years ago. Class 2 and 3 are focusing particularly on World War One while Class 1 are concentrating on inventions, artists and Dunsford village life 100 years ago.

The topic is already proving to be a big success. The children have come back to school bringing with them all manner of interesting World War One artefacts, photographs and keepsakes. The human stories that have accompanied these items have already brought the topic to life and have fascinated the children and teachers alike.

Our understanding of this period of History will be enhanced by a one day drama workshop for the older children, entitled ‘Toot Sweet’. Through drama, the children will explore how the Great War affected men women and children. They will also touch on issues such as: ‘What happened if you did not want to fight?’

Our English learning this term will give the older children the opportunity to enter a local poetry competition. In preparation for writing their own pieces, the children will study a variety of World War One poems and other poetry on the theme of ‘conflict’. These should provide an excellent stimulus to help the children to think about the feelings of those who lived during war times.

In Design Technology KS2 children are studying World War One advances in vehicles. After looking at the diversity of vehicles used in the war the children will begin to design their own tank or armoured car. They will then create moving models of their vehicles.

In Art, the younger children are finding out about the work of Pablo Picasso, producing artwork of their own inspired by some of his iconic pieces. The older children are working with a local artist, Kath Hadden, to produce paintings and canvases on the theme of ‘poppies’.

We aim to include as much local history as we can in our topic work. Several local historians have already offered to share their knowledge and expertise with the children. The KS2 children will be visiting local war memorials, the Royal Albert Memorial Museum’s current exhibition and Exeter High Street (it has changed a lot in 100 years – there used to be trams back then!)

If you have any information about Dunsford 100 years ago, stories about people from Dunsford during World War One or artefacts from this period of history which you would be happy to lend us, then we would be very interested to hear from you.

December is always a very busy month in a primary school. It is also a very special time, full of celebrations and excitement. We put up festive decorations across the school and the oldest children decorate the Christmas tree. Children, families and staff send each other Christmas cards; there is always great excitement when the ‘postmen’ arrive in class with the day’s post from the Christmas postbox! We have great fun at our Christmas parties, with lots of silly games to play and refreshments provided by our generous PTFA. We share a delicious Christmas lunch, with all children, staff and some of the school governors sitting down together. If we have all been very good, Father Christmas might also take time out of his busy schedule to visit us for our final assembly!

Christmas is also the time of year when we put on our biggest show of the year in the Village Hall. This year we are planning not one, but two, Christmas spectaculars for families to enjoy. The younger children will perform a nativity play called ‘Whoops-a-Daisy Angel’, which is about an accident prone angel who longs to see the new baby in the stable but things keep going wrong! The older children will put on a play inspired by their learning about ‘100 years ago’. The script (inspired by the children and written by our very own Mr Parker) is set both in the trenches, and back here in Dunsford, during World War One and is based on the story of ‘The Christmas Truce’. We are all very busy rehearsing our parts, remembering where to stand at different moments, learning songs, practising dances and making props, costumes and scenery. Many parents have been busy at home, helping us with this! We will put on both shows back-to-back at each performance, with an interval in-between. I can’t wait!

We all wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

September 2014 Topic News        August 2014 Topic News

Please find attached the teaching arrangements for the 2014-15 academic year.

Teaching_Arrangements_For_2014_15