Goodbye Findlay & Finlay

Today we said goodbye to our two P7 boys as they leave us to move on to secondary school.

We couldn’t let the occasion pass without taking the chance to wish them a fond farewell. Family and school staff turned out for a socially distanced gathering.  We all shared wonderful memories of our school year together and praised the boys for their many skills and talents.  They have both made the last year such a pleasure for us all. It was a bitter sweet day as we are sad to see them go, but we know they are more than ready for their next big adventure.

There were more goodbyes to say to others. We said farewell to Annabelle as she moves away with her big brother,Findlay, to start at a new school after the holidays. Our best wishes went  also to Mrs McColm and Mrs MacPherson who will be based at other schools after our return in August.  We thank them both for their hard work and dedication and we will certainly miss their cheery smiles.

Mrs Henry warranted a special mention too as she has been so dedicated, working away in school during closure for pupils.  She has been busy organising, tidying and keeping the home fires burning so that we are ready to go in August.  Thank you Mrs Henry.

Goodbye and Good Luck to all our leavers.

Portpatricks Podcasts

On Monday evening the first episode of Radio Wendy was published by Moat Brae. Some of you may remember when the children were asked to create a series of Podcasts as part of the enchanted lands project. Episode 1 is brought to you by Findlay and Alfie. Please see the link below to have a listen. Well done boys, what a great story complete with excellent sound effects, backing music and voiceovers.

Radio Wendy – Episode 1 – Findlay and Alfie – CLICK HERE

Additionally, Ava Lily and Atticus have been busy creating their own Podcast Music. This song is called ‘Dream to the Future’. I’m sure you will all agree that this is a very important message. Great work Ava Lily and Atticus !  See link below to have a listen to their creation.

Ava Lily and Atticus – CLICK HERE

Ava Lily Achieves STEM Success

Ever imagined what our future world will be like?  Well, Ava Lily did!

The School of Science and Engineering at Dundee University along with the Institute of Civil Engineers organised a national competition called The Future of STEM.  Children were asked to imagine and design a poster describing how STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) could
change the world we live in.

The judges liked Ava Lily’s concept design so much that she  has been awarded joint third place from all the entries received.  This is an impressive achievement.  Congratulations for your forward thinking Ava Lily.

Ava Lily’s design has been shared on the University of Dundee’s web page.  Have a look at all the winners:

Here is her successful entry displaying creativity, ingenuity and imagination:

2020-06 ICE Poster Competition (1)

Click on the link above to see the competition entry details.

The announcement came on a noteworthy day.  Yesterday was Women in Engineering Day.  It also fits perfectly with our STEMs Clubs Week.  We are participating virtually using online resources provided by:

Here is a link to all the STEM Clubs activities that are taking part this week.

STEM Clubs Week timetable – FINAL v5

Congratulations again Ava Lily!


The ground force gang – Portpatrick parent edition!

In the course of 2 days a small team of 6 parents have formed a socially distant garden gang and totally transformed the overgrown nature area which was greatly  in need of some tidying up.

On Saturday 13th June the Karen and Steve, Kim and Marc and Kirstyn and John worked all day to remove the vegetation.  It resembled more like a rainforest than nature area to start with.  Armed with chainsaws and strimmers they got to work.  John Connor then had the power of persuasion to get William Halliday from Galloway treecare to head out to Portpatrick and donate his services to chip all the branches that had been cleared.  The wood chips generated will be recycled and used for paths inside the nature area .  Huge thanks must go to him for being so generous with his time and machinery.

Today, the garden gang were back in action.  Putting in another full day they managed to secure the services of a mini digger from Jewsons to clear the site of old roots .  The lifeboat crew helped supply some fuel for the digger and the big boys certainly enjoyed playing with the big toys!  Again, many thanks must go to Jewsons and the RNLI for their support of the school.

Tomorrow the team will be back, and starting to lay the paths.

What a top team, and what a top community spirit, all working together to benefit the boys and girls of Portpatrick Primary.  

Thank you, thank you,

thank you!

P4-7 Working from Home Learning Heroes

Our wonderful boys and girls continue to show how brilliant they all are at adapting and coping with the changes to our learning during this school closure.  They have been busy, busy learning and creating at home.  We would like to share some more fabulous examples of their work with you to enjoy.  We are sure you will agree that they can all be rightly proud of themselves!

  • Ava Lily – Stop Motion videos: Evolution and Mutations and Evolution of Mankind

LB K’nex motorised car wc 250520

  • Alfie – Creative Poetry writing using onomatopoeia sound words:
Whizz, pop, boom
The crowd were cheering
with laughter and the fire crackled.
Fireworks zoom into space and
Making colourful light in the dark night.
  • Finlay – Nature mask art challenge:







  • Ruby – Nature digital photography

  • Alba – bar graph using data generated at home:

  • Isabella – Pie Chart using data using percentages shares & musical human beat box

  • Maya – Science: Seed germination:

  • Rose  – Covid 19 Presentation:

RS covid presentation

  • Robin – Reading Comprehension:

  • Jack – Rainbow art:

  • Liam – Rainbow art:

# Successful Learners & Effective Contributors

Lockdown life video

Our wee team have very been creative during lockdown and all came together to create our special video.  Everyone was given a special word to create a piece of word art at home.  No-one knew what it would say when it all came together.  Once put together we have a fabulous poem and message to all.

Have a watch and you will see our creative, happy children in the glorious setting of their homes .

We are so proud of each and every person for the part they play in our family of schools.

Click here to see us in action 🙂

Rainbow Art at Portpatrick

Last week Mrs Copeland set everyone an Art Challenge to create a rainbow in as many ways as possible. Looking at line, shape, colour, texture and form you all created some brilliant and varied rainbows and used lots of different and creative materials.

It’s so lovely to see what everyone is doing at home and even better when we can spread some cheer. Below are some of your wonderful creations. Well done everyone!

Stay safe and keep smiling!

Home School Learning

It is great to see the creativity and motivation that our pupils are displaying in their home school activities with their families. There have been some fabulous examples of learning shared with us.

Here is a selection of what our learning super stars have been up to:

Science – Life Cycles:

Findlay Thorburn – Stop Motion Life Cycle

alba_izzy life cycle

ALOE Life Cycles

Language – Ava Lily’s story writing:

The Exciting Journeys of Doctor Xenon and His Crew!

Keep sending in photos and examples of your work.  We really do love to see what you have been doing.

A big cheer to all our wonderful families who are doing a sterling job of supporting the boys and girls at home during this time.  An even bigger cheer to our fabulous pupils who are working and learning in such varied and purposeful ways!

Well done everyone!

# Successful Learners & Responsible Citizens

Show Time!

Porpatrick Primary performed their Easter play Sleeping Beauty; The Ugly Truth on the 19th of March.  We were a tad early presenting our production due to the recent closure announcement.   We were keen to  celebrate the hard work and effort the boys and girls have put in before we said goodbye for a time.

The children proved what dedicated professionals they were.  They improvised, took on extra roles and the show certainly did go on to everyone’s delight!

Mr White kindly took a video of the performance to share for those who weren’t able to join us on the day.  Well done boys and girls!


Barbara’s Last Day

It is a sad day indeed at Portpatrick Primary.

Barbara, our fabulous catering manager, is retiring today after 20 years of faithful service. Over two decades Barbara has served delicious and nutritious meals to each and every one of us.  Each meal has been prepared with love and care.  She served her very last school dinner to Izzy today and we couldn’t let the occasion go unmarked even in the midst of  the current circumstances.

She has always gone above and beyond, making sure every individual child was catered for.  She has always embedded herself in whole school life, organising events and giving of her time and skills for charity and the community.

She is irreplaceable and will be very much missed by all!

Wishing you every happiness for a long and happy retirement.

With love from us all at Portpatrick Primary




Last Day STEM Fun

The whole school had a blast today, taking part in a range of STEM activities (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths).  We made full use of our environment.

To start our day off in the fabulous sunshine, the boys and girls enjoyed a maths themed Easter egg hunt. They had to seek out colour coded number challenge eggs to complete their calculation mission.  They were rewarded with a wee treat of a chocolate egg courtesy of the Easter Bunny, who had made an early delivery to the school.

Next up was practical STEM engineering and construction challenges in our STEM Zone. The children got stuck in to our new Kapla building kits. There were models, bridges, towers and structures galore; all created using HOTS ingenuity and imagination.  P1-3 were busy beavers too. They used the K’nex vehicle kit to make moving vehicles and machines of their own design.  Some undertook Lego challenge missions to construct models, patterns and designs successfully.


Coding was next on the agenda as the children applied computational thinking to design algorithms to complete challenges on their coding fundamentals course with

Finally, we all made our way down to the park for well earned social time.  The children enjoyed participating in active play with their friends.

Wishing you all safe, happy and healthy over this period.

Love from Portpatrick Primary


One stop shop for learning at home

There is a wealth of information, ideas and resources available free to use to assist you with helping your child to learn during the school closure.

Here is a handy ‘one stop shop’ web page that is set out in sections to make finding resources easier to navigate. Simply copy and past the link below into your browser.

It has sections on:

  • Home teaching ideas – listed by subject area
  • Useful websites – listed by subject area
  • Useful apps – All free, inc. of how to download Glow to your mobile device
  • ‘How to’ videos’ inc. of how to use Glow.
  • Google Drive
  • Youtube – inc. of Joe Wicks PE activities etc.
  • Articles with links to a wealth of ideas and resources e.g. “Alexa, help me learn.”

Here is a downloaded version of how to access Glow and its resources at home:

How to access and use Glow for Distant Learning

If you don’t have a computer at home, it is possible to set up an Xbox to gain access to the site through your device :

Don’t forget you can install Office 365 at home for free using this tile, which which is available on Glow and is already installed on your child’s launch pad app.  Children can share work directly with their teacher using online Word etc.

Hoping this is helpful : )

Pocket Garden Competition Success

As part of our ongoing Eco Schools work to try and achieve our next Green Flag, we participated in the Keep Scotland Beautiful Pocket Garden competition. As part of this, families and pupils were invited to design a garden based on one of the 4 themes: Year of the Coasts and Waters; Keep Scotland Beautiful’s 20th Birthday; One Planet Picnic; and Wildlife Gardening.

All P4-7 pupils designed a garden in class and we submitted the entries last week. I am delighted to say that we received an email from Keep Scotland Beautiful, stating:

“We were thrilled to receive over 100 entries from across 21 of Scotland’s local authority areas and I am delighted to let you know that your entry has been successful!  There was a very high standard of entries inspired by all the themes and the judges were all impressed by the creativity, imagination and humour in the designs.  Please pass on our congratulations to your talented pupils.”

Our winning entry was from Ava Lily Orr-Ewing – a huge well done!!!

The prize is to now turn Ava Lily’s design into a real life garden and take it up to the Gardening Scotland event that is held in Edinburgh at the end of May. Our gardening club will start after the Easter holidays (circumstances permitting) and will focus on creating this.

How to access your child’s Glow account at home.

Here is a handy ‘how to’ guide on how to access your child’s Glow account at home.  There is access to email and shared resources and files via Teams.

Your child’s Glow login will be in their homework diaries.  They have all been checked as working today.

Click on the images to enlarge or click on the attached document hyperlink to download the full Word version.

How to access glow email_teams at home Blog How to access glow email_teams at home

Engineering meets Science – BSW

P4-7 ask themselves the following scientific hypothesis:

Would tomato seeds thrive quicker in a green house construction compared to those not placed in a green house cloche?

To assist with this challenge, the pupils got their engineering design heads on today.  In groups of 3 they planned and constructed a greenhouse structure using just straws, connectors and cling film.

The children applied collaboration, negotiation, self-evaluation and modification to their designs as part of the construction process.  Each team successfully produced a free-standing structure that can simply be lifted away to aid watering.

Half the plants have been placed in the cloches and half are set aside for comparison.  We will monitor growth over time to see which condition promotes the quickest growth.

# Effective Contributors & Successful Learners

Science Open Day – BSW

As part of our week long activities for British Science Week (BSW), Portpatrick Primary invited families to join us for an open day event this morning.

Everyone took part in a carousel of STEM based activities (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).

The range of challenges on offer were as follows:

  • Geology – Observational study of rock formation
  • Forces – Magnetism and materials
  • Electricity – Series circuits, conductors & insulators
  • Engineering – K’nex moving parts construction
  • Computing – Soundtrap pocast/music making
  • Computing – Coding
  • Biology – Place the internal organs on a body tunic
  • Biology – Studying life cycles – live caterpillars
  • Aerodynamics – Construct and test an ‘O’ glider
  • Aerodynamics – Construct and test a paper aeroplane
  • Science Terminology – Complete a vocabulary crossword

Everyone was fully engaged and there was much chat about the learning that took place.

# Successful Learners

Active Maths – Telling The Time

P1-3 got busy today to tell the time by forming a human clock.  The children had to work collaboratively to problem solve and calculate position.  They ‘chained’ together to form the minute and hour hands of a clock to show given times. The task was differentiated appropriately.

P1 challenge – O’clock

P2 challenge – half past the hour

P3 – challenge – quarter to and quarter past the hour

# Successful Learners

I’m a scientist – Get me out of here!

As part of a British Science Week, P4-7 participated in an online chat group with 12 UK scientists today.  This event is organised through funding from the Sustaining Excellence Award from Wellcome the UK’s largest charity.

The boys and girls interacted with the scientists, asking them a range of topical science questions on their field of expertise.  The pool of scientists present in the session was varied, representing a balance of genders, a broad spectrum of ethnic groups and specialist fields.  The children had an opportunity to explore the diversity of the world of work in this STEM sector.

We learned interesting facts about a wide range of subjects such as finding out about the ‘zombie fungus’ that takes over insects bodies and compels them to climb higher to 25 cm to more efficiently spread its spores at the right temperature and humidity.

The children asked questions about research into a vaccine for Covid-19.  They were reassured to find out that there are many hundreds of scientists working on this right now.  Also, the science team said that we can greatly reduce risk by simply using tissues to sneeze and cough, washing our hands and avoiding touching our faces.

It was a very interesting session, which follows on from our I’m a mathematician online chat at the beginning of the year.

# Successful Learners

World Book Day Winners

Our Library monitors, Alba and Izzy, ran a competition for World Book Day, where pupils had to design a new front cover for their favourite book. Today, they had the difficult task of judging the entries and selecting 2 winners – one from P1-3 and one from P4-7.

It really was a tricky task – so much so that we had joint winners in P1-3 as the entries were so good! Tilly and Lewis were announced as the joint winners in P1-3, and Rose was selected as the winner from P4-7. The winners had a selection of books to choose from and took home 1 each as their prize.

Well done to all the boys and girls who entered the competition – it was great to see so many colourful and eye-catching designs.


Curling’s cool bonspiel

Findlay Thorburn joined up with p7 pupils from Kirkcolm to form a partnership curling team to take part in the inter school end of season tournament on Monday 6th March. 

Findlay has been going along to the after school sessions at the North West Castle with Scott from Kirkcolm.  Findlay was skipping the team of four.

In the first game they drew with Rephad and then went on to be beaten by Sheuchan.  Findlay played a great last stone in the final end to claw back a one.

It was  a great experience for them all and allowed the Primary 7 pupils to get to know each other a bit more, prior to moving on to Stranraer Academy.


World Book Day

The whole school were book worms today to celebrate World Book Day.  There were many activities that the children participated in.

Alba & Izzy organised a second hand book sale as part of their library monitor responsibilities.  The children had the opportunity to recycle and reuse by purchasing old book stock for the princely sum of 20p per title.  P1-7 enjoyed.  We raised £22, which equates to over 100 books purchased for our little school.

All of the children participated in DEAR – Drop Everything and Read.  Everyone signed on to their new MyOn online reading accounts and enjoyed reading at least one book.  We collectively read 1940 pages in 93 books. Our top three genre selections were longer books, adventure and sports.

P4-7 then took part in ‘Bookbusters’, a retro-style quiz based on the old TV series Blockbusters.  The class split into two teams (blue and red) and answered questions on famous books by the letter of their title.  The winners were the ones to first reach the other side of the board in a linked chain.

The activities moved on to the children designing their own book cover for their favourite book.  This is due in tomorrow, so there is still time to polish the artwork before the winner is judged.

Finally, P4-7 had the challenge of writing the best book review in the class.  Children can bring their completed entries to school tomorrow. The winner will receive a copy of ‘The Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book‘ to create their own memoirs for when they are famous.

# Effective Contributors & Successful Learners

A Fisherman’s Tail

We were thoroughly entertained on Wednesday morning by 4Front Theatre, who brought their wonderful performance of ‘A Fisherman’s Tail’ to Portpatrick Primary. The pupils sat engrossed for almost an hour as they listened to the story of 4 fishermen (James, John, Andrew and Simon) who were competing to catch the biggest fish on the Sea of Galilee, when Jesus appeared. The fishermen became Jesus’ disciples, and the story went on to tell of the miracles of Jesus, right up to his crucifixion.

The performance was full of songs that got the pupils clapping along, and some very funny scenes that had them all roaring with laughter.

A huge thanks must go to the Baptist Church and Scripture Union who made this wonderful experience possible. It was a very enjoyable RME lesson, teaching pupils about some of the key messages of Christianity in a fun and engaging way.

Green Fingers for Gardening

As part of our ongoing Eco Schools work, the Eco committee are planning on running a gardening club after the Easter break. However we were given some tomato seeds which needed to be planted now – so the boys and girls rolled up their sleeves on Wednesday morning and got planting, kindly aided by Sian who volunteered to come in and help. Every pupil in the school now has a pot of tomato seeds to care for over the coming weeks. We will be keeping a close eye on them to ensure they grow and develop!

Academy STEM Ambassadors

P4-7 took part in a science workshop event organised and delivered by S6 Stranraer Academy STEM Ambassadors Lilly and Emma.

The young ladies delivered a carousel of four activities.  First up, the children used their sense of smell to determine whether the could smell as well as a shark.  The pupils had to sniff vials of varying strengths of water/perfume from zero, 20ppm, 200ppm and 100ppm.  They then ranked them in order of weakest to strongest.  Robin and Alfie were in full-on shark mode, getting the vials in the correct order.

Next up, the pupil had the very enjoyable activity of making slime like a slug.  A simple mixture of cornflour and water was produced.  The children explored the properties of this substance. The mixture flowed, but became stiff when squeezed or pushed by a spoon.  We learned that this is an oobleck mixture that becomes more viscous when pressure is applied.  This is beneficial to a slug as the creature can apply different pressure points with its foot to both slide and anchor in place.

Following that activity, the pupils engaged in a brain challenge.  They were presented with colour words written in a non-matching colour e.g. the word pink written in green pen.  The children had to try and say the colour word and not the colour it was written in.  It was a bit of a brain tease.  Most people find it easier to say the word rather than the colour as the word has a strong influence on the brain.  Words are read faster by the brain than colours are named. If you would like to find out more about this challenge, it is called a Stroop test.

Colour Word or Colour Shown?

The final activity was testing our peripheral vision.  The boys and girls attached string to a protractor to create an arc with which to rotate an object into our field of view.  We were using our rod cells to sense objects.  There are fewer rod cells at the periphery of our retina.  Hence, why we could not determine what the object was until it was more directly in front of us.

To bring the session to a close the STEM Ambassadors elicited the pupils’ thinking on the science behind each activity.  The children explained what they had learned by carrying out the practical activities.

Thank you to Lilly and Emma for a great learning experience!

# Successful Learners

Shrove Tuesday Maths

The whole school enjoyed celebrating Shrove  Tuesday today.  The children have been learning about this practice as part of our RME topics on Easter and Lent.

In P4-7, we applied HOTS creating skills by designing a range of topping choices for our pancakes: 1 healthy, 1 indulgent and the one they actually produced.

As P4-7 are also learning about fractions in maths this term, we applied this in context to engage with the recipe at differentiated levels.  We did the following:

  • Halved the recipe ingredients to make a lesser quantity of pancake batter
  • Worked out the fraction of a litre we used for 200ml of milk (1/5th)
  • Worked out what fraction of a kilogram we used for 100g of flour (1/10th)
  • Converted between improper and mixed fractions i.e. when we added five, 1/4 teaspoons of sugar to our mixture.  We calculated that this equates to 5/4 as an improper fraction and 1  whole + 1/4 as a mixed fraction.

P1-3 focussed on using and applying instructions as part of following recipes.  The children used their maths skills to measure and weigh the correct amount of each ingredient to make the batter mix.  The activity was followed up by creating and/or organising the correct sequenced steps for a pancake recipe.  The boys and girls then had a mock pancake race for PE using beanbags and racquetes.

As part of estimating and measure, the class measured out 15 metres in the hall to visualise the circumference of the biggest pancake ever made. Everyone agreed it would have taken some eating!

Throughout the food technologies activity, all the boys and girls worked safely and hygienically to cook their individual pancakes before selecting their toppings to enjoy as a tasty snack.

# Successful Learners

Safer Internet Day – Pupil Attitudes and Practices

Our P4-7 pupils carried out an interactive survey of their practices and attitudes to online activities.  The children were asked a range of questions on their online habits.  This was anonymous and conducted through a computer voting system not requiring any login details.

As per national trends, the results demonstrate to how our young people are engaging with social media and online devices.

Have a look at the video to view the results.  The footage can be paused on each slide to allow you to digest the information displayed.

We are using these results to have a conversation on how to use online media safely and responsibly.

The class also undertook a class discussion quiz that focussed on how consent works in an online context. We explored how young people ask for, give and receive consent online. This covered aspects such as friendships or relationships, how they take and share images and videos or how they manage their privacy and data.

# Responsible Citizens

Safer Internet Day – Parental Advice

As part of Safer Internet Day (SID)2020, we would like to highlight available support and advice information for parents and carers that may be of interest to you.  A great  source for family home resources and information is the SID website link, as shown below:

The site contains a wide range of materials that can be used to talk to your child about online safety this Safer Internet Day. This includes activities, conversation starters and information to help parents and carers talk to their children about how to navigate the issue of online identity in a digital age in a safe, responsible and respectful way.

Attached is a sample Family Internet Safety Planner that allows you to formulate your own approach to internet safety in your home environment.  There is also a resource sheet detailing links to further sources of information.  Both are downloadable directly from this blog or from the website above.

Why not use the prompts shown in the image (click to enlarge), and below, to see how you can start a conversation with your child using the top 5 tips to keep our young people safe online. :

Our internet, our choice, so…

  1. Choose to have a conversation

    Talk regularly with your child about how they use technology, and find out what their digital life is like, including what their favourite sites and services are and also how being online makes them feel. Listening to your child will give you the best possible idea of how you can support them. Not sure where to begin? Have a look at our suggested conversation starters for parents.

  2. Choose to take a balanced approach

    As parents it’s natural to feel worried about the risks posed by your child being online, but for young people the online world is exciting and fun, as it brings so many opportunities for them. Remember that your child will use technology and the internet differently given that they are growing up in a world immersed in all things digital. Try to look at both the positive and negative aspects of being online and empower your child with safe choices they can make instead of overwhelming them with restrictions.

  3. Choose to make use of the tools available to you

    There are lots of tools to help you manage the devices used by your family. For example, knowing how to activate and use parental controls can help protect your child from seeing inappropriate content online. For advice and guidance on how to make use of parental controls and other safety features on devices, check out our free Parents’ Guide to Technology and Internet Matters’ step-by-step parental controls guides for online services. 

  4. Choose to get help and support

    It can sometimes feel like young people are the experts in all things digital but remember – you are the life experts. You are always there to help your child but make sure you know how to get support too by visiting our Need Help? page. You can take steps to support your child online by using features such as privacy settings on social media and understanding how to make a report on a range of apps, games and services.

  5. Choose to be current and topical

    This Safer Internet Day focuses on the very relevant topic of consent in the digital world. Use this as an opportunity to support your child with how they tackle digital consent within relationships and friendships as well as how online services use the data we provide. Use our quick activities as a family this Safer Internet Day to help you unpick this topic together.

    # Responsible Citizens

Parents and Carers – Family internet safety plan

Parents and Carers – Resource sheet

Scots Successes on Showcase

Throughout January, the boys and girls have been busy with some Scots challenges – they had to learn their Scots poem and practise reciting it with great gusto; write out their poem in their best handwriting; and create a piece of artwork linked to their poem.

On Tuesday, Mr John Ross had the difficult and unenviable task of judging the competition – we had a few joint winners, he just couldn’t choose!!

Lots of parents, family members and friends of the school then joined us on Wednesday for our Scot Showcase assembly, to celebrate the pupils’ successes. They were presented with certificates and entertained the audience with recitals and some Scots songs.

A huge well done to all the pupils for their efforts. Below is a list of the winners:

Recitation winners

P.1         Ode tae a spider     

1st Rebecca Connor  2nd Stephen Ross

P.2         Twa Leggit Mice          

1st Carter Henderson 2nd equal Louise Webb & Erin Harbottle

P.3         The Sair Finger         

1st Cameron McNeil 2nd Atticus Orr-Ewing 3rd equal Lewis Mcquillan & Conor Ritchie

P.4         The Bogle        

1st Rose Santangeli  2nd Jack Trafford  3rd Sophia Schofield

P.5         The Wee Kirk Moose  

1st equal  Maya McNeill & Ava Lily Orr-Ewing 2nd Ruby Rankin  3rd Isabella White

P.6/7     Address tae the Haggis  or Willie Wastle

1st Findlay Thorburn  2nd Robin McLean  3rd Finlay Schofield


Illustration winners

P.1        Rebecca Connor

P.2        Erin Harbottle

P.3        Lewis McQuillan

P.4        Jack Trafford

P.5        Alba & Isabella White

P.6/7    Lillie Baker


Handwriting winners

P.1         Rebecca Connor

P.2         Erin Harbottle

P.3         Tilly Gordon

P.4         Jack Trafford

P.5         Ava Lily Orr-Ewing

P.6/7     Lillie Baker

Outdoor Maths – Measure, Area and Perimeter

P4-7 braved the chilly day today to pop outside to have an outdoor maths session.  The focus was measurement, perimeter and area.

P6 & 7 measured the length and breadth of our football pitch in metres.  They recorded their length as 17m by 30m. They calculated that the perimeter  was 94m and the area was 510 metres squared.

P4 & 5 measured the length and breadth of the paving slab, which was 60cm by 90cm.  We calculated the perimeter as 300cm (3m).  The area was 60 x 90 cm = 540cm squared. ( Some took an extra challenge of working in decimals: 0.6. x 0.9=  0.54 m squared)

As it was so chilly, we popped back inside and worked out the area and perimeter of our P.E. hall.  Some children worked in whole numbers, whilst others worked accurately to 1 decimal place. The children produced a scale drawing of the measured area using cm squared paper.

We then applied real life problem solving to work out costs of placing a border around the hall  and the price of carpeting the hall (differentiated by price per metre).

# Successful Learners

Grandparent’s Burns Lunch

Friday saw the return of our annual celebratory Burns lunch for our grandparents.  As you can see from the photos below, this event was as well attended as always, by family members in our community.
Mr John Ross CBE, Lord Lieutenant for our area, gave the Address to the Haggis whilst P7 pupil Findlay Thorburn presented the haggis.  Once the address was complete, P7 Pupil Finlay Schofield said the Selkirk Grace. Everyone then tucked in to a delicious lunch of Haggis, neeps and tatties, as prepared by Barbara.
There was a short break for the children whilst the grown ups enjoyed tea with traditional homemade shortbread.
The audience were then entertained with a sample of recitations of Scot’s poems our pupils have been learning as part of our Robert Burn’s celebrations:  Erin Harbottle & Carter Henderson, both  P3, recited Twa Leggit Mice J.K. Annand.  Cameron McNeil recited The Sair Finger and Maya McNeil, P5, recited The Wee Kirk Mouse by D Frances.
The entertainment continued with P4-7 singing the humorous Scot’s song, Daphne Cochrane whilst P1-3 sung Allie Ballie Bee.  The proceedings were brought to a close with everyone linking hands to sing Auld Lang Syne.
Barbara received 3 cheers for the wonderful meal she served everyone.
Our thanks go to our helpers, Sian, Harry, Kim, Amie, Larriane and Sam who helped everything go so smoothly.  Thanks also go everyone who donated a raffle prize and to everyone who took the time to come along and support our event.
# Effective Contributors

Rotary Lunch

This week, at the North West Castle. They spent the afternoon with members from the rotary club and representatives from 12 other schools , listening to speakers and taking part in a quiz all about RHET. The quiz invited them to list reasons why children benefit from visiting farms. Well Done to Finlay Schofield who joined up with Team Leswalt and  got First Prize and some gummy bears. Afterwards they enjoyed a delicious lunch . The boys had a fantastic time and enjoyed representing our school.


Scottish themed S.T.E.A.M.

All the boys and girls have been very busy applying their S.T.E.A.M. skills in the context of our Scottish Burn’s celebrations. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Maths)

The children were set a home challenge of producing an artistic creation to represent the theme of the Scottish poems they have each been learning.  We have been so impressed by the standard and variety of entries.  We have models, dioramas, fabric craft AND artwork!  Our pupils have been applying a wide range of STEAM skills such as designing, selecting materials, measuring, combining, cutting, sticking, sewing, shaping, decorating and even wiring electric lights to name but a few – Wow!

The judges will have a very hard time selecting a winner from each category.  Well done everyone!

Thank you to every family for their support in this challenge.  We hope you enjoyed being creative together.

# Successful Learners

Fabulous Work!

Scottish Kelpie Art

As part of our Scottish celebrations P4-7 has been learning about the legend of the Kelpies.  Mrs Copeland, our resident art specialist, showed the children artwork and images of kelpies as depicted in traditional folklore.  She then demonstrated the technique of creating tint and shade by adding white and black to, in this case, a blue pallet was practiced.

The children have now applied those techniques for themselves and have taken great care and attention with their artistic creations. They have all produced very lovely images which are now on display for all in school to see.

# Successful Learners

Gardening Goodies!

Thanks to the Portpatrick Community Council, our Eco committee have purchased some new gardening equipment. This will help us set up a gardening club in the summer term, with a view to holding a plant sale prior to the summer holidays. Have a peek at the photo below of our Eco committee pupils displaying some of their new gardening goodies!

STEM nation award submission

Miss Whorlow has been working very hard on developing STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Maths) across our 3 schools. 

Here she has showcased some of the STEM activities which have taken place at Portpatrick recently

STEM at Port

Miss Whorlow had spent a great deal of time putting together a submission which shows off all the STEM work in our 3 schools.  We hope that this will be verified by Education Scotland as one of the pilot schools in the STEM nation awards.  The power point is all hyper linked.  If you click on it, it leads onto further examples and documents of all the amazing work.

STEM Nation Award

Thanks you Miss Whorlow for all of your hard work in driving this forward for us!

Reebops – Inheritance

P4-7 got their geneticist heads on today.  We have used our links with Stranraer Academy to borrow their Inheritance primary  loan kit. The children have been learning about how lifeforms inherit their physical and biological characteristics from their parents.

Using the Academy reebop resource, the pupils selected chromosomes from a mum and dad reebop.  Dependent on the combination selected, they then constructed the baby reebop traits to match the ‘building block’ code. You can see the wide diversity of appearance that our reebop babies have inherited.

# Successful Learners


I’m A Mathematician Web Chat

P4-7 have been participating in a maths career based activity called I’m a Mathematician, Get me out of here.  We have been learning about how maths helps a range of experts do jobs in different fields.

As in our science web chat session, the boys and girls interacted with the scientists, asking them a range of topical science questions on their field of expertise.  The pool of scientists present in the session was varied, representing a balance of genders, a broad spectrum of ethnic groups and specialist fields.  The children had an opportunity to explore the diversity of the world of work in this STEM sector.

I’m a Mathematician, Get me out of here is an online, student-led enrichment activity where students connect with people who have maths at the heart of their work.

To get our brains in gear ready for our chatroom session with experts, we watched a very entertaining Christmas Maths lecture: on the mysteries of the never ending number.

We learned about prime numbers sequences and how species of insect use prime numbers to avoid predators.  This links with our science topic of adaptation and evolution.  Also, we discovered more on working out formulae and the power of doubling.

We then moved on to study career profiles for two mathematicians:Chloe Martindale, a cryptographer and William Petterson, a computer scientist.The children worked collectively to compile a list of relevant questions to ask these experts to find out more about how maths is used in their careers.

We had a 30 minute scheduled chat room today session where we typed in our questions and received responses in real time.

The children were enthusiastic and even received a tip or two on how to start preparing now for a future career as a mathematician.

# Successful learners


Christmas Party

P1-7 gathered together to mark the final day of term with their annual Christmas party.

The children enjoyed a buffet lunch of savoury and sweet treats. This was followed by a party agenda to be proud of, as organised by our house captains, Findlay Thorburn and Lillie Baker. The boys and girls were entertained with a mix of both traditional and new games.

After the games, the children received a special visitor – Santa arrived ringing his bell. He kindly gave out presents to every boy and girl, which goes to show they must all be on the nice list! Mums, dads, grandparents and family joined us to watch the festivities.
The children sung him a song before he departed to make his final preparations for the big night.

Wishing everyone a Very Merry Christmas!

Christmas STEM Challenge

Our naughty elves, Elvis and Coco, said goodbye to the boys and girls today.  Before they departed for the North Pole, they left the children a present of gingerbread house building kits.  

The school divided into small teams and got stuck in with their construction and design skills.  The children quickly realised that patience and a steady hand was required to complete the challenge.  They had to consider what edible materials they could use to ‘glue’ the sections together. Whilst they were waiting for the structures to stabilise, the boys and girls decorated gingerbread figures to enjoy at morning break. 

Design and decoration skills were then put into action to create a pleasing, sweet treat pattern finish to their home decor.

Throughout the task, a range of soft skills were applied, such as discussion, idea sharing, encouragement and cooperation.  Even when there was a collapse or two, the children demonstrated perseverance with a smile. 

At the end of the challenge, ever team had successfully constructed a fine, free standing gingerbread house fit for any elf to live in.

Each group’s entry was entered into a competition where 1st, 2nd and 3rd place were awarded on the basis of criteria such as stability, resilience and presentation. Names were put into a hat and drawn for a lucky pupil to take their team’s entry home.

# Successful learners

It’s Panto Time – Oh Yes It Is!

The whole school had a fabulous time at a Jack and the Beanstalk pantomime at the Gaiety Theatre, Ayr yesterday.  The show was very entertaining with many a giggle moment. Our favourite character was Patsy the Cow.

At intermission, the children were treated to an ice-cream. Atticus was the lucky winner of a goodie bag full of treats!

After the show, everyone then went to the Stage Door restaurant for a lovely lunch.

We all enjoyed the wonderful entertainment and food.

Thank you to the Community Council for the ice cream treats and to the Parent Council for financing the bus transport.  Thank you also, to our parent helpers Sian and Alan.  A great day was had by all!


Mount Stewart Christmas Party

Once again the boys and girls of the village were treated to a special Christmas dinner party at the Mount Stewart.  Diane, Graeme and all the staff were very kind and spoiled the children with a lovely dinner.

More treats were to follow.  There was freshly made popcorn straight from an authentic popcorn machine for everyone to enjoy.  Next, there was great entertainment when everyone jumped in to enjoy the snow machine bubbles.

The children had a surprise visit from Santa Claus too.  We all song Christmas songs and had good cheer before receiving a gift for each child.

Afterwards, there were even more sweet treats – ice cream and chocolate.

Thank you to all at the Mount Stewart for a fabulous festive evening!

Christmas Jumper Day

The boys and girls arrived at school on Friday dressed in their Christmas Jumpers as part of Save the Children’s Christmas Jumper Day 2019. At lunchtime, we sat down to a delicious turkey dinner kindly cooked by Barbara. We had lots of fun pulling the crackers, wearing our paper hats and telling each other Christmas jokes, with the lovely Michael Buble playing Christmas music in the background! Portpatrick Primary was definitely in the Christmas spirit today and to top it off, P4-7 wrote a poem to sum up the day –


The boys and girls of Portpatrick Primary,

Came to school dressed in their festive finery,

At lunch they pulled Christmas crackers and put on their hats,

Then enjoyed a turkey dinner with lots of chat!

Willow Dome Weaving

It may have been a drizzling, but that didn’t dampen pupils’ spirits as they wrapped up warm and headed outside on Friday with Sian Roberts, who kindly gave up her morning to work with pupils. Sian is a local gardener and parent. They were busy weaving the newly grown willow back into the willow dome to make it stronger – we had been keeping a close eye on the new growth and waiting for the leaves to fall off before undertaking this job. Pupils enjoy sitting in the willow dome during breaks for a bit of quiet space, or using it to play ‘jails’!!! Have a keek below to see them at work!



Victorian Era S.T.E.A.M

As part of learning about the Victorian era, P4-7 have produced fantastic results in a S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths) challenge.  The pupils were given an open ended brief to design, construct and evaluate a resource that depicts an aspect of Victorian life.

As always, the children impressed with their imagination, creativity, and attention to detail.  The standard of entry and the enthusiasm of the boys and girls was lovely to observe.  Barbara judged the entries and awarded the following:

1st Place – Ava Lily with her Victorian home with fine detail

2nd Place – Liam with his Victorian camera, complete with bellow style covering

3rd Place – Maya with her historically accurate coloured and shaped Victorian post box

All agreed that every entry was of a very high quality.  Thank you for all of the family engagement and support that made this possible.  Why not pop in to see our terrific table top display?

# Successful Learners


Portpatrick Christmas Fayre

Sunday saw a very busy and successful Portpatrick Christmas Fayre, held in the village hall. Having spent all week creating Christmas crafts in school, the older pupils took it in turns to run the school craft stall. On sale were snow globes, gift boxes with peppermints, salt dough tree decorations and wrapping paper. In total, the stall made an incredible £125!

The Parent Council also ran the cafe, selling lots of delicious homemade baking, and raised a grand total of £522.23.

Having been held captive in the kitchen to practise their singing from 3.30pm, the pupils took to the stage at 4pm donned with festive jumpers and cheery smiles, to entertain everyone with some Christmas songs they had been busy learning in school. The pupils sang loud and proud and helped to put everyone into the festive mood!

Well done to everyone involved – the countdown to Christmas is now on!

All The Fun of The Fair – Come Buy!

All the fun of the fair!

The whole school has been enterprising ‘Christmas Crazy’ this last little while preparing lots of lovely crafty gifts to sell at Sunday’s Portpatrick Christmas Fair.

The pupils (and Barbara) have made peppermint sweet gift boxes, shortbread gift boxes, salt dough tree ornaments, wrapping paper, photo snow globes AND Christmas tree & Snowmen decorations.  They all look fabulous and will help decorate your home, ready to get you in the festive spirit.

The children have used this as an Enterprise project to help raise funds.Please do come along and support our wee school.  Thank you.

Ho, Ho, Ho!

# Effective Contributors

Feis Rois Scottish Music Performance

After 12 weeks of learning and practice, P4-7 gave a musical performance to the whole school and family members this afternoon.  The children performed a range of traditional Scottish songs sung both in Gaelic and English whilst playing the tin whistle.  The boys and girls were accompanied by Wendy and  Kate of Feis Rois, who have delivered excellent instruction to the pupils.

The audience thoroughly enjoyed the talents of the pupils and a great morning’s entertainment was had by all.

Have a listen to a couple of the musical performances below to see the skills our boys and girls have mastered.

# Successful Learners

Enterprise and Baking

P4-7 got creative to find ways to support the community Christmas fair.  They decided to make sweets to sell.  The class made peppermint creams by following a simple recipe.  We initially weighed quantities, but after experience we were able to use ‘ready reckoning’.

We applied strict hygiene standards throughout the task, wearing hair nets and aprons and making sure we had squeaky clean hands.

The group were able to calculate the amount we had to sell each pack of sweet for to make a profit.  We added up the total cost of the ingredients and divided that number by the quantity of sweets we were able to make.  This was then multiplied by how many sweets would be in a pack.  We now know how much we must sell each gift pack of sweets for to generate a profit sale.

The boys and girls used paper craft to create decorated presentation gift boxes.  They will make a lovely present for someone at the Christmas Fair.  We hope you would like to buy them.

# Effective Contributors & Successful Learners

We Are Engineers – Bridge Building Challenge

Lauren Steel, Principal Technician: Structures & Engineering Design for Communities with Dumfries and Galloway Council joined us today to deliver a P4-7  engineering workshop, in collaboration with the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE).  Lauren volunteers her time to help develop children’s learning in S.T.E.M across the region.

Lauren talked to the children about different designs of bridges that can be found in the world.  The most common in Dumfries and Galloway is the masonry arch bridge.

Working in small groups, the children were given the challenge of initially designing and sketching a bridge that would be capable of being load bearing.  They then had to select materials and combine them to meet the brief.

The boys and girls used a wide range of Higher Order thinking skills to problem solve.  They had to plan, select, estimate, combine, construct, modify, improve and adapt and test their bridge construction.  Further, they had to apply their soft skills of cooperating, negotiating, discussing, sharing and agreeing to complete the task – phew!

All children were completely absorbed by the task at every step of the process.  They collaborated effectively in their teams and rose to the challenge. Every bridge constructed was successful in supporting a heavy load of a filled water bottle.

Future engineers in the making!

# Successful Learners


Digital Schools Scotland award!

I am delighted to say that following a process which we have been undertaking over the last 2 years, as part of our School improvement plan, our partnership of trio schools has achieved National recognition in the Digital Skills Scotland awards.

Yesterday I received official confirmation that we have been validated and awarded this, following a lengthy submission of evidence and visit of an assessor. 

Dear Ms Sheila Baillie

Following your Digital Schools Award Scotland validation visit by Alan Yeoman, I am delighted to inform you that North Rhins Partnership Schools – Leswalt Primary / Port Patrick Primary and Kirkcolm Primary have been successful in their application to become Digital Schools in Scotland.

On behalf of all the partners involved in the Digital Schools Award Scotland I would like to congratulate the schools on achieving this award.

I enclose the validation report which summarises the validator’s view of the extent to which the schools addressed the award criteria.   The Digital School Award is recognised by Education Scotland.

We are confident that North Rhins Partnership will be a pioneer among schools where digitally enhanced teaching and learning is helping our children and young people prepare for living and working in the 21st Century.

Kind regards

Aoife O’Connor
Programme Coordinator
Digital Schools Award Scotland

This award is recognised by Education Scotland.  Only one other school in the whole of Dumfries and Galloway has this award currently.
Thank you must go to all staff and pupils for their hard work and willingness in this work – they are indeed a “pioneer among schools”. 
Our team may be small – but is mighty!

Barvember at Portpatrick

The boys and girls in P1-4 at Portpatrick Primary have been busy learning all about how Bar Models can help us with our maths reasoning. By Drawing out the bar we are able to decipher what mathematical process is required to solve the problem.

Today we took on Q1 and Q2 of White Rose Maths #Barvember challenge. Each Day a new challenge is uploaded. I think we are starting to get the hang of it now !

Book Week – The Gruffalo

Yesterday we participated in The BBC Authors Live Event in partnership with Book Week Scotland where pupils were able to listen to James Robertson and Catriona Lexy Campbell read out renditions of The Gruffalo in both Scots and Gaelic.

There were lots of giggles as we discussed our favourite Scots words and we even learnt some new Gaelic words.

We were lucky enough to be watching Live and even Tweeted BBC Scotland Learning to let them know we were watching and we even got a little retweet.  If anyone who uses twitter would like to follow Miss McGeoch’s professional account the handle is @MissMcGeoch.

Book Week Scotland

As part of our Book Week Scotland celebrations (which runs from 18th-24th November), P1-3 parents were invited into school this afternoon as part of the Bookbug (P1) / Read, Write, Count (P2-3) initiatives. Parents spent time exploring the contents of the bags and discussing ways in which the resources could be used to develop pupils’ literacy and numeracy at home. We also had a look at the ‘Parent Club’ website which gives further examples of activities to do at home using the resources.

An excited bunch of P1-3 pupils then joined us and were gifted with their bags. Pupils were desperate to get into their bags and see what it contained! Having sat patiently, we then headed to the classroom where pupils explored the goodies they were given – some were reading books; others were playing games of rockets & meteors or top trumps; and some were using story cubes to create imaginative silly stories!

Later in the week to continue the Book Week Scotland celebrations, P4-7 pupils will be doing some paired reading with P1-3, as suggested by the Pupil Council, and some pupils will be watching the Authors Live event which tells the story of the Gruffalo in Scots. We are all looking forward to getting together to enjoy some stories and share in our love of reading!


On Friday the 15th November the boys and girls at Portpatrick Primary helped to raise money for BBC Children In Need. Our theme this year was “Pudsey goes to

work”. Pupils came to school dressed up as what they wanted to be when they grow up. There were some magnificent costumes, from YouTube sensations to Artists and Vets. Pupils brought in cakes for the cake sale, participated in the colouring competition and even tried to guess the name of the bear.

At 10:30am the whole school invited in Mums, Dads, Grannies and Grandads to join in with our “Pan

cakes for Pudsey” event. Pupils made pancakes in t

he morning and then decorated th

em with some delicious toppings.

Well done to Primary 1-4 who organised the fundraising as part of their topic this term.  A special thank you to Alba, Izzy and Lewis who brought in cakes for the cake sale and everyone who came along to support the event.

The total amount raised was … £ 222.42

Phenomenal amount for such a small school !

Winners ;

Colouring Competition- Tilly

Guess the name of the bear – Ros


Best Dressed p1-4 – Stephen (P1) Doctor

Best dressed p4-7 – Findlay (P7) YouTuber



to follow…

Portpatrick Team Photo

The BIG event , Pancakes with Pudsey


Our Prize Winners….

Sumdog Maths Challenge – Well done Izzy!

Top 10 Players
School Ranking

Well done to Isabella White for being ranked 9th in the top ten student Sumdog players in this week’s regional Sumdog’s online maths challenge!

1530 pupils participated with 401,864 maths questions answered. So this is no small feat by Izzy!

P4-7 also achieved a high ranking; 14th on the class leader board from 112 class entries (70 qualifying).  Keep on calculating!

#Successful learners





Technology To Enhance Literacy

P4-7 have been having a great time exploring new software to support their learning in literacy.

The children have been researching Christmas traditions in France as part of our Modern Languages topic for this term.  We have used Book Creator to publish an information book on their findings.

We selected a template design, imported appropriate images, recorded pronunciations and used the ‘read to me’ function to dictate auto text entry.

We have created a library of our books.  Your child will be sending you an email with an invitation link in it to allow you to view their personal creation. Why not scan the QR below to have a read of some examples for yourself!  There may even be a song to entertain you from Ruby and Maya.

#Successful Learners

Ruby and Maya
Rose and Alfie
Ava Lily



Remembrance Day Observed

Today marks the day WWI ended, at 11 a.m. on the 11th day of the 11th month, in 1918.

The whole school came together to remember the members of our armed forces who have served, and still do serve us around the world today.

We talked about what the poppies we wear represent.  We also discussed why we raise money by selling poppies to help and support those who have made sacrifices.

We shared how we observed the two minute silences held around the country yesterday for Remembrance Sunday.  Some children were at church, some were in the supermarkets and some marked the occasion in their own homes.

We all stood together today and held a one minute silence to show our respect and thanks.

#Responsible Citizens

Maths in our Community – Real Life Challenge

As part of Outdoor Learning Day, P4-7 visited our local Post Office shop today.  Margaret, the manager of the shop, kindly gave permission for our pupils to carry out a budget challenge working with money on the premises, working with real stock.  We made use of what is is our local environment to engage with real-life learning.

The children were given a choice of budget with which to select and plan party food and drink for our imagined class party.  They had to choose and cost items on the shelves, decide how many of each item was needed for our group and, thus, give a total unit cost.  They then had to find a final cost for all their selected the party items to determine whether they had kept to their budget.  If they were over budget, they were required to make decisions as to what items to keep or swap for alternatives.

The session was very productive; providing a real life context for using money.  Margaret was keen to lend a hand and help the children make decisions on their ‘purchases’.

Our thanks go to the staff at our local Post Office – community participation!  Morning shoppers were happy to see a productive team in action.

# Successful Learners



Lactalis Supporting Portpatrick Learning

Presenting our new Ipads!

Portpatrick Primary have had a great learning boost as a result of our links with local Industry employer, Lactalis McLelland.

Mr Nick Dietz, HR Manager, very kindly donated 5 Ipad minis to our school to help support our digital literacy development.

The children are thrilled to be able to now access a wider range of technology to enhance our learning across the curriculum.

Mr Dietz gave his time to talk to the children about the skills for work that a company such as our local creamery look for in an employee. He also chatted about how science, technology, engineering and maths are used to run an efficient organisation;  making the cheeses we all know and love.

We are keen to expand the quantities of Ipads we hold to allow greater engagement.  To this aim, the school is pursuing funding options to allow us to do so.  Watch this space…

A very big thank you is given to Mr Dietz and Lactalis McLelland for their generosity.

Lactalis McLelland#Effective Contributor

Curling’s Cool

P7 had a grand time this morning as they were given the chance to layer up and head out to the North West Castle for a morning of curling. They got an opportunity to glide around, sweep the ice and slide the stones along and then got straight down to business for a mini session of games!

Finally all the boys and girls mixed up for a final game and although our Portpatrick pair gave a noble performance, it was Leswalt that took the title.

The P7’s had a great time – many thanks must go to Mrs Thorburn for transporting them and supervising them this morning.

A Fab-boo-lous Time

This afternoon pupils at Portpatrick primary were creepin’ it real as they got dressed up for their annual Halloween party. The party was run by our wonderful House Captains, Findlay Thorburn and Lillie Baker who organised some fang-tastic  games for everyone to participate in. Everyone was in great spirits and the effort that went into the costumes was incredible.

The winners of the games are as follows;

Costume Parade: P1-5 Louise

P6-7 Alba

Halloween Corners : Stephen

Halloween Jungle Tig : Ruby

Halloween Statues : Ruby

Wrap the Mummy : Erin’s Group

Best Dancer: Maya

Then we had Dookin’ for Apples to round off a wonderful afternoon.  A very special mention to Findlay Thorburn and his mum for creating some wonderful handmade Halloween prizes, it was very much appreciated by all.

See below for photos.

Our Prize Winners;

Party Fun ;

Class Photos;

RSNO in the Rhins

Primary 7 enjoyed their first day at Stranraer Academy in the company of all the other Primary 7 pupils from the cluster.  The day had an enjoyable focus of Music, with members of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra travelling down to Stranraer to conduct a workshop with all the pupils.

Our pupils were singing, dancing, playing games, composing and learning about the orchestra and their music in a fun filled day.  After lunch they were joined by older pupils from the Academy who came along to listen to the final performance from the musicians.

All returned to Primary, more familiar with Stranraer Academy and informed and entertained by the orchestra.

Bonfire Safety

The whole school were given some very wise advice on how to stay safe during this season’s bonfire celebrations.  Representatives from both the Police and Fire Brigade came to talk to children about the dangers that are present when they are near fireworks and bonfires.

Everyone agreed that Guy Fawkes celebrations are great fun, but that we should all make sure we take simple precautions to keep ourselves out of harm’s way.  We now know how to behave sensibly around fire and fireworks.

Thank you to our emergency services.

#Responsible Citizens.

RHET Farm Visit – STEM in our Community

P5 and 6 were given the opportunity to visit Balgracie Dairy farm as part of a R.H.E.T. organised initiative.  The pupils were given a guided tour and an explanation of farm processes that apply technology, science and engineering to carry out tasks.  They learned about the many, many jobs that are required to keep a healthy and productive dairy stock and how farming is undertaken in an environmentally responsible way.

All the milk from Balgracie farm goes to Nestle to make Kit-Kat chocolate.  We were treated to a few ‘biccies’ to take home with us to sample after our visit!

The children then applied their recount writing skills to share their experience with their partnership Glow e-buddies.

See below for an example of recount writing from Ruby P5:

All about Balgracie Farm!  Ruby Rankin P5


Today P5-6 went to Balgracie farm on the 29.10.19 at the farm.  We learned about dairy farming.


When we arrived we had to dip our feet into a soapy bucket to kill any germs so we didn’t infect the animals.  Then, Mrs Mc Nicoll gave use a pair of gloves and we were not allowed to take our gloves off.

Baby calves:

Next, we went to see baby calves. They were all six weeks old. They had blue or red tags on their ears. Blue was for boys and red was for girls. When the calves are born they have to get colostrum milk within six hours or they get ill.

Milking parlour:

After we saw the baby calves we went to see the milking parlour. Mr Drennan showed us the milking pumps they use to automatically milk the cows.  He demonstrated the automatic nut feeder that gives the cows food to eat whilst they are being milked. He also showed us a yellow cream that you put in the udders so they don’t get bugs.

Sleeping barn:

Next, he showed us the cow beds.  They were made out of rubber.  There was a motorised pooper scooper to clean away any slurry.  The slurry is used as fertiliser for the fields.

# Successful Learners

Harvest Time at Dunskey Estate

This afternoon pupils at Portpatrick Primary were delighted to be invited up to Dunskey estate to help Chef Chris make some apple crumble using foraged apples from the trees in the walled garden.

First, we had to pick the apples. Although this was harder than it looked for the average 3 1/2  ft tall 5 year old! Luckily some of the older pupils were on hand to help. Mrs Baker even produced the most spectacular “apple picking device” we had ever seen.

Next, we took a walk up to the main house where Mr and Mrs Orr Ewing gave us a warm welcome and lead us into the dinning room. Once we had taken our jackets off and washed our hands, the brilliant bakers were ready to go.

Led by Chef Chris the children made their crumble. To say we enjoyed ourselves would be an understatement. As you can see, there were smiles and giggles galore. Uniforms are sure to be needing a wash after having fun with the flour!

Chef Chris then gave the children a taste of the apple crumble he had made earlier. It was delicious!! Lastly, the boys and girls were given a copy of the recipe and their own crumble to take home to bake and share with parents.

Huge thank you to the Orr Ewing Family and all the staff at Dunskey Estate for having us. What a wonderful way to round off a fantastic first term.

Happy Holidays everyone!

Digital Leaders – Rainy Day Club

Our partnership pupils completed a Digital Technologies pupils’ views survey recently.  The children answered responses to a range of questions and offered their feedback and comments on how they view their Digital learning experiences.

One particular suggestion from  Emma Drummond of Kircolm, spurred our Digital Leaders to organise rainy day I.C.T. clinics.  Whenever we now have a wet weather break that might keep us indoors, the pupils have the opportunity to come along and share skills and knowledge with one another.

Today’s focus was on using the Smartboard tools.  The boys and girls used both Smartboards to run two workshops.  Everyone found the sessions enjoyable and worthwhile.

# Successful Learners

Wigtown Book Festival – Shoo Raynor

P4-7 travelled to the Wigtown book festival today to participate in an illustrator workshop with successful book author and illustrator Shoo Rayner.

We learned to use basic shapes as the building blocks for illustrating characters as well as how to use guide lines to rotate faces etc.  They children practiced creating people by starting off with a stick person and ‘filling’ them out.

Shoo reinforced that everything takes practice, practice, practice, just like our school REACH character Practicing Pete.

It was a very informative and enjoyable session.

Shoo Rayner has lots of Youtube videos on  ‘how to draw’ available to watch if you would like to learn more.  Here is one example:

# Successful Learners

Emergency Services – R.N.L.I. Visit

P1-7 received a visit from our local Royal National Lifeboat Institute (R.N.L.I.) volunteers Kim and Johnathon yesterday.

They explained that there are over 4000 R.N.L.I volunteers in our country.  Each person gives up their time for free to help others. They work very closely with the coastguard.

We learned that the lifeboat travels at 25 knots, which is equivalent to 32 miles per hour.  The boys and girls agreed this was pretty fast for a  boat.

Kim said that the longest ‘shout’ rescue job they have been on was over 20 hours, so the job can be physically demanding. They will respond from everything to a kayak in trouble to large ferries, wherever anyone needs help at sea. She also said that every volunteer receives basic lifesaving skills training such as C.P.R.  Our P4-7 class have already practiced this skill with Tanya Ellis, our local paramedic.

Johnathon explained to everyone that if we ever fall in the water, the shock of the cold water can be very dangerous for our bodies.  He said we should all ‘starfish’ float for a minute to let our bodies adjust to the cold before we try to swim.  This safety tip could save our lives.

Johnathon showed us all the safety and protective clothing each RNLI officer has to wear when going out on a shout.  It is all designed to protect them from the cold and to save their lives if they get into trouble. Everyone got to try on the helmet and the lifejacket.  The life jacket is a very expensive piece of equipment, costing nearly £1000.

# Responsible Citizens

Photos uploaded by digital leaders Lillie and Maya

Bubbly Maths

Written by Digital Leaders – Findlay Thorburn

P1-7 travelled to the Academy for a Bubbly Maths workshop session today.

Bubbles the clown used string loops to make bubbles of different diameter.

We practiced using our handy body measure to estimate a metre length. Ava lily is the perfect metre from her left shoulder to her opposite right arm outstretched.

We were shown how to visualise and estimate how many metres the hall was in length, breadth and height.  Ruby was asked to count out the number of metre length balloons it took for each dimension.

Bubbles used a square of metre length balloons to let us see a ‘square metre’.  We then used a cube made out of metre length balloons to see a cubic metre.  This helped us to estimate how many it would take to fill our hall.

As we had arrived before anyone else, we got a special session where we estimated how many of our class we could fit into the metre cubed balloon shape.  We managed to fit all 12 of us present into the shape!

Bubbles created bubble shapes using open sided 3D shapes.  Again, we had a sneaky, close up view of this before the other schools arrived 🙂

Ms. Whorlow and Bubbles used a metres cube of string dipped in bubble mix to create a bubble to cover pupils in a bubble case.

Throughout the session we learned to make ‘marvellous mistakes’ that help us learn.

Here is a link to the Bubblymaths website:

#Successful learners

Maths Week – Outdoor Learning: Time Duration

P4-7 got their sprinting shoes on this morning to work with time duration and technology.

We first estimated then measured the distance of our football pitch with a trundle wheel.  It had a length of 30 metres.

Next, using a digital stopwatch, each pupil sprinted a double run of 60 metres whilst another took a turn at timing them.

We then used software to plot and display our data graphically.  We discussed which type of graph would be most suitable. The class agreed that a bar would be the best to show each individual time.

The children then selected to use either Microsoft Excel or 2SimpleGraph to enter their data.  We remembered to give our graphs a title and label each axis.

We then interpreted our results. Using our HOTS analysing skills to consider whether our results supported the questions that:

  • The oldest/youngest runner was the fastest/slowest
  • The tallest/smallest runner was the fastest/slowest

Our results did not support these statements, demonstrating that we are all unique.

As an extra challenge we calculated the speed of each runner using the D=S x T formula transposed to S = Distance/Time

# Successful Learners

Emergency Services – P.C. Wilson’s visit

On Friday the 28th of September, P.C. Wilson came to talk to P4-7 about her job as a police officer. First of all, she talked to us about what you would use the police for.  Examples are in the event of a car crash, a robbery, people being threatened, teenagers fighting etc.

Some other advice that she gave the pupils, was if  you are going to the fairground make sure to go with an adult.

P.C. Wilson told the pupils that one of the things that she has to do is that if a bomb was to wash up on a beach she would have to block it off and make sure no one gets hurt.

We learned how to make a 999 call in an emergency.

P.C. Wilson explained all the different charges that someone could get if they commit a crime. She told us that the legal age for responsibility is 8!

She went on to talk about how drug taking can cause poor mental health and that we should look after ourselves.

We know how important it is to be responsible and to not break laws and how we can help other in trouble by contacting the police.

# Responsible Citizens & Effective Contributors

By Digital Leaders Findlay Thorburn P7 and Rose Santangeli P4

Microsoft Office 365 At Home

Free resources to learn together

Portpatrick Primary is happy to support families to learn more about digital technologies.  P4-7 pupils are using Office 365 through Glow in school.  If you would like access to this software at home, it is available free to use through the children’s Glow accounts.  The children have added the ‘app’ tile (shown below)  to their launch pads to make it easy to locate.

Image result for office 365 glow

Should you need to locate it for yourself, once your child has logged in, simply click on the black flag on the left hand side of the screen and type Microsoft into the search app box in the top right hand section of the screen.  This image can be enlarged  by clicking on it.


Free online tutorials are available from the Microsoft Training Centre at the following address:

Click on each software icon to reveal instructional videos by task.


Image result for office 365 training centre

We hope this is useful for you.

# Successful learners together

Wigtown Book Festival Visit

P1-3 had a fantastic day today at the Wigtown Book Festival. Wigtown book festival aims to provide opportunities for young people to enjoy and learn through writing and storytelling and we most certainly did !

Alan Windram talked to us about his award winning book ‘One Button Benny’. He explained that Benny is a special robot. A single red button sits in the middle of his stomach. Benny has never known what the words “Only Press in an Emergency” mean until one day he is forced to find out.

The boys and girls then enjoyed participating in Robot Karaoke which included elements of dancing, singing and even some guitar. It was brilliant, and for some it was exhausting…

New Playground Toys

On Wednesday, our new playground toys arrived!! Huge thanks must go to all the friends of families of the school who participated in the Kirkcolm Mini Walk to raise funds which went towards this.

We have loved having toys to play with at break times, and our responsible playground monitors (Alfie and Lewis) are ensuring that we are taking care of them.

More photos to follow…

Super Survey in Pretty Portpatrick

Last Thursday, the boys and girls in Primary 1-4 took a stroll down into the village to have a look around our community. Our current topic is Portpatrick and we have been looking at what types of facilities we have around us and why, who are the people in our community and why are they important.

During our walk we made sure to talk about all of the above, however we had a very important task to complete. The boys and girls were conducting a survey on the types of houses we have within our community. They were able to correctly identified the different types of houses and discuss why we have more terrace and semi-detached housing in the main part of the village opposed to the detached houses we find more common on the likes of Heugh Drive .

Below are some photos from our walk.

Keep an eye out to see how we will use technology to help explain what we have been learning about and display our findings from our survey.



Coding and Community

Portpatrick Primary opened its doors to family and friends this afternoon to share our learning on digital technologies and coding as part of Digital Coding Week.

There were many activities for everyone to participate in.

P1-3 were set the challenge of programming a code-n-go mouse to navigate a large scale map of Portpatrick village.  Everyone had to estimate and try step quantity and direction to reach landmark destinations the children had reproduced on the map.

P4-7 practiced and shared their skills on digital coding, using the free online courses available on (select projects tab).  These are available to explore further at home.  The pupils are signed up for differentiated levels of challenge.

They also continued with their musical composition using Soundtrap; sharing and collaborating on making tracks.

The pupils practiced their keyboard skills by using (This is also available online at home).

Throughout the range of activities, the children were applying their computational higher order thinking skills of:

  • tinkering
  • collaborating
  • using logic
  • creating algorithms
  • perseverance
  • debugging

Digital technologies and computational thinking are at the forefront of the skills demand for the future world of work that our pupils will be entering.  We are committed to helping our children prepare for the challenges and opportunities that are ahead of them.  By embedding digital technologies within our curriculum, we hope to support them in this goal.

Why not watch the Socialnomics 2018 video below to see for yourself the powerful message on how our world is changing?

# Successful Learners


Emergency 1st Aid Workshop

P4-7 received a special visit from Paramedic Tanya Ellis today.  We learned a great deal of information about the role of emergency services, why we would contact them and what we would say if we had to call in an emergency.  The pupils considered carefully the dangers of making hoax 999 calls.

The workshop then moved on to practicing placing an unconscious person in the recovery position. All the boys and girls were able to achieve the required pose for their unconscious casualty.

Tanya then demonstrated carrying out C.P.R. on a dummy.  The children practiced performing compressions on the dummy for themselves.  We learned that the sequence is 30 compressions to 2 breaths.

The class then shared their knowledge on how to treat a range of injuries and emergencies such as burns, asthma attacks, breaks, bites and bleeding.

# Responsible Citizens

Soundtrap Musical Technology

P4-7 had our first workshop sessions on Soundtrap with Mr John Dinnin. We learned how to use it to make our own music.  We used loops and instruments to make music track.  We shared them with  each other and asked each other to tell us if they liked our music.  We will get another 3 workshop days with Mr Dinnin.  Have a listen to Sophia’s music.

# Successful Learners

Written by Digital leader Rose P4

Click play below to listen to music made by Sophia.

Pupil Responsibilities

Pupils have had a busy start to the year, applying for various jobs in the school and demonstrating they are keen to take on positions of responsibility. We received lots of applications for Pupil Council and monitor jobs; several pupils were keen to be interviewed for the Eco committee; lots of boys and girls in the senior class applied via the online application for Digital Leaders; and P6/7 pupils said their House Captain election speeches at assembly.

This year, we have decided that pupils will earn a ‘salary’ (in the form of merits – not cash!) for undertaking their job to give them further experience of the world of work.

After a difficult decision, we have selected our new committees for the year.

Our new Pupil Council members are:

As a new addition this year, we have introduced House Captains. They will help to motivate and lead their house to gain as many merit as possible throughout the year, and will help with the organisation of events such as parties. Our House Captains are:


Our new Eco Committee, hoping to take forwards our current action plan and achieve our Green Flag next year:

And finally, our new Digital Leaders who will help to develop ICT in classes and provide technical support in the school are:

Maya, Rose Findlay and Lillie (photo to follow)

STEM, Sway and Instructions :)

P4-7 are continuing to explore instructions through a range of mediums.  Today, we used our STEM craft skills to construct a paper hat.  We were required to:

  • Sequence diagram images in the correct order
  • Carry out the construction stages to make a paper hat
  • Record each step with a clearer, digital photograph
  • Create a fuller, instruction text with all the required features i.e. Title, equipment, tips, stage photographs, written commands, sequencing connectives and imperative verbs.

The children then experimented with using ‘Sway’ to create their instruction text publication.  Here is an example made by Findlay T – P7. Click on the link below then select play.

How To Make A Paper Hat
Created by Findlay Thorburn p7
Go to this Sway

# Successful Learner

Primary 4-7 Coding Time

P4 -7  have been doing their coding course on and they have also have been giving a robotic mouse instructions to find and collect cheese through a maze made by the pupils.  We are working with how to create and debug instructional algorithms as part of  learning about instruction texts in our language topic.

#Successful Learners

Post by Digital Leader Findlay Thorburn



Digital leaders

Findlay, our experienced digital leader, has been showing the new digital leaders how to upload photos to a computer from the digital camera. The new digital leaders have been learning how to create and publish a blog with their glow accounts.

Our new digital leaders are Findlay, Lillie, Maya and Rose.

# Effective Contributors & Successful Learners

Blog posted by Findlay T – P7


Bake Off Technical Challenge

As part of learning about instruction texts, P4-7 were set a technical challenge ‘a la British Bake Off’ style.

The children were given a pared down recipe instruction for pancakes with some basic instruction text features omitted from it.  The recipe did not detail equipment needed, had incomplete steps and no sequencing connectives etc.

We used the real-life experience of making the pancakes for ourselves to ‘debug’ the instructions provided.

The children will follow up the activity by creating their own improved recipe instructions using I.C.T. technology.  They will use the digital images we took in the activity to enhance their recipe with photographic illustrations.  They will then add in features such as sequencing connectives, imperative (bossy) verbs and fuller, step-by-step stages.

We shared our pancakes with the whole school.  They were our taste test judges and the verdict was they were all ‘Star Bakers!’

#Successful Learners

Paddle Against Plastic

This afternoon we were delighted to welcome Cal Major into our school. Cal is currently travelling from Lands End to John O groats on her paddle board in a bid to raise awareness around the plastic pollution in our oceans.

“Paddle Against Plastic hopes to inspire and empower positive change, and bring hope and pride in being part of the solution.”

Cal, a veterinary surgeon, describes herself as an ocean advocate who is passionate about connecting people with the ocean and protecting it and its ecosystems.

Cal was speaking to the children about how plastic ends up in the sea, how we can help and how we can reduce our consumption of single use plastic.

Here are some of her top tips;

  • Help to raise awareness of the issue in a positive way
  • Participate in a beach clean
  • Remove fishing nets from the beaches
  • Buy a reusable water bottle
  • Don’t flush litter down the toilet
  • Take reusable bags with you when you go shopping

Cal then very kindly shared with us some fantastic videos of her journey. It was lovely to watch the images of our dramatic coastline as well as some clips of the animals that she has encountered along the way.

Her final message is not to feel guilty or negative about the current situation but to focus on what we can do instead of what we can’t. Every little helps as they say and doing something is better than nothing. Thanks again to Cal for giving up her time to come and visit us at Portpatrick Primary.


Outdoor Maths

Primary 4-7  took advantage of the good weather to hit the ground running in our outdoor maths by playing Hula Hoop Place Value.

We positioned hoops to represent units, tens, hundreds, thousands and ten thousands etc. Each pupil was then given a digit between zero to nine and asked to stand in a hoop , displaying their number.

The children had to read and say the number we made. We experimented by rearranging the digits into different hoops; read and said them again, taking care to pay attention to the value of each digit based on its place in order. We also introduced decimal hoops for tenths and thousandths to add extra challenge.

We further increased the difficulty by putting two people into some hoops to make 10 or more. We then had to decide what we would do next e.g. 2+8= 10 units so put one more in the next tens hoop and put a zero in the existing hoop.

It was a lovely way to start our day.

# Successful Learners

End of Year Ceremony

The school community gathered today to say goodbye to our P7 pupils and to celebrate success throughout the year.  Awards were presented for the following:

100 % Attendance:

Alba White, Ruby Rankin, Rhian Palmer (3)

Responsible Pupil Awards:

P1-3 – Girl – Annabelle Thorburn Boy – Atticus Orr-Ewing

P4-7 Girl – Olivia Cumming Boy – Findlay Thorburn

Accelerated Reading:

Star reader in p2 – Lewis Mc Quillan

Star reader in p3 – Rose Santangeli

Star reader in p4 – Ava Lily and Alba

Star reader in p5/6 – Findlay Thorburn

Star reader in p7 – Rhian Palmer

Word millionaire:

Ava Lily

Platinum Rainbow Tables:

Findlay Thorburn, Ava Lily Orr Ewing & Lillie Baker

Platinum Rainbow Spelling:

Rhian Palmer

STAR awards – gold recipients:

Ruby, Max, Alba, Isabella, Liam , Rhian, Lewis

Barbara Lunch Helper Award:

Izzy White

Sporting success:

Footballers – Lee, Rhian and Rowan

Badminton: Rhian

Sports champions:

Junior Boy – Cameron

Junior girl – Erin

Senior girl- Rhian

Senior boy- Rowan

Artistic award Eileen Mc Donald Cup:

Ava Lily Orr Ewing

Literacy p1-3 Erin p4-7 Rowan

Numeracy p1-3 Jack p4-7 Ruby

HWB p1-3 Sophia P4-7 Lee

Endeavour award – Alba White

REACH award – P1-3 Rose P4-7 Lillie

Songs were sung to entertain the audience and to express the sentiment of the day.

Goodbyes, thank you’s and good wishes were said to Mrs Warwick, Mrs Wither, and Mrs Leek for their hard work throughout the year.  Sian Roberts was thanked for her years of service on the parent council.

Mrs Baillie expressed thanks to all staff and parents for their help and support throughout the year.  Mrs McHarg also thanked Mrs Baillie for her dedicated efforts.

We rounded off the day with a quick trip to the beach for a toe paddle and a play in the glorious sunshine.  Let summer commence!

#Effective Contributors


P7’s Dine Out

Our P7’s enjoyed a social evening dining out at the Mount Stewart to mark the occasion of their moving on to Stranraer Academy.  Rowan, Rhian, Livvy, Myles and Lee had the pleasures of a meal together in the sun room.  They then moved on to enjoy the sunshine in the village with just one more day left at primary school.

We wish them all the very best of luck on their new adventure.

#Time for a new chapter

Cream of Galloway Trip- farming, manufacturing and fun!

The whole school tootled off in the glorious sunshine to enjoy a day trip to the Cream of Galloway yesterday.

P1-3 participated in a farm tour to learn about the farming industry.  They saw where the cows are milked and then toured the byres.  The children learned that the cows have massaging brushes to keep themselves in tip-top condition.  All the cows were grazing happily outdoors. Cream of Galloway pride themselves in their treatment of their livestock, allowing as much outdoor time as possible for both mothers and calves.

P4-7 learned about manufacturing and experienced a Sundae making workshop.  The children selected their own flavours of ice-cream, added sauce (lots!) and toppings (lots and lots!).  They then went up to the viewing gallery to look down at the factory.  Here, cheese and ice-cream are made in the vats; enough to fill a swimming pool each year. We learned about packaging design to appeal to customers.

After that, it was Go Boing, where all things bouncy was the order of the day.  Everyone enjoyed climbing the six story 3D maze and scooting down the slides too.  There was lots to keep everyone entertained.

P1-3 enjoyed an ice-cream of their choice after their lunch.  P4-7 were all ice-creamed out from their earlier treat. It was all too soon time to return to the bus for the journey home.  There were a few ‘zzzzz’ to be heard from the tired, but happy crew.


Partnership Sporting Success

Tuesday saw all 3 of our North Rhins partnership schools come together for a morning of exploration and an afternoon of inter-school sports fun. Pupils from Portpatrick and Kirkcolm travelled to Leswalt, who hosted the event for the first time. After arriving, the boys and girls made their way up to the Aldouran Wetlands for some fun in the gardens.

They then made their way back to school for a picnic lunch outside, and enjoyed getting to know and play with pupils from the other schools. Just as we were ready to head to the village park to begin our sports, the rain started – but it didn’t damped our spirits! Thankfully, the shower passed and it was a lovely warm afternoon for the boys and girls to cheer on their own schools – they were all getting very competitive and were keen for their school to be the overall winner of the afternoon!

There were various races for pupils to participate in, including sprint, skipping, sack, egg & spoon, distance and a relay. After counting up the points and working out the scores proportionately given the differing numbers of pupils in the 3 school, Portpatrick were the overall winners of the afternoon, with Leswalt in 2nd place and Kirkcolm in 3rd.

A huge thank-you must go to Lidl who supported the event for the 2nd year running, by providing water and fruit for the pupils to enjoy – they were well in need of this after the distance race! Also to the Brown family, who transported the equipment from the school to the park for us. The pupils had a wonderful afternoon mixing with other boys and girls in their year group across the 3 schools and are looking forward to our next get together already!

Tractor Tom

Tractor Tom, aka Tom McKie (Sophia’s Papa) visited the school this week to allow P1-3 to learn more about how tractors are used to help with farming.

The children learned about the different parts of the tractor and what they are used for to lessen the workload for busy farmers.  Each pupil eagerly took advantage of the chance to sit in the tractor.  Tractor Tom then took the tractor for a quick spin and a toot in the playground to show off its manoeuvrability.

# Successful Learners

SSERC Science Share: Rocket Mice

Today, P3-6 linked up with Thornton Primary STEAM Team as part of a live SSERC Cook-Along GlowMeet session.  Along with up to 100 schools throughout Scotland, we shared a video link that guided us through the science behind blasting off our home made rocket mice launchers.

The children carried out a practical science activity to explore the forces acting upon our rockets. We observed the upward thrust produced by quickly ‘clap-smacking’ our milk bottles rockets to launch our home made mice astronauts.  The quick expulsion of air from the bottles created an upward propulsion system.  We discussed  how air resistance and gravity worked against the mouse’s upward thrust.

We recycled our unwanted milk cartons to do our bit for the environment. 🙂

You can watch a replay of the launch on the video link below.

#Successful Learners


Veterinary Visit – Science & Work

Following on from our Careers in the Community assembly, Carolyne the veterinary nurse returned with vet Steve to share more of their experiences of working as a mixed practice in the Stranraer area; both with domestic and farm animals.

They were accompanied by the ever popular Dougal the Cockapoo.  Dougal kindly volunteered to let the children give him a medical assessment.  They listened to his heartbeat through stethoscopes and inspected his ears to check they were clean and healthy.  The boys and girls proved excellent vets, taking gentle care of Dougal. He was more than happy to be groomed and pampered during his visit.  He was the star of the show!

#Successful Learners


Spinners and Weavers

Primary 1-3 received a visit from the local Spinners & Weavers group today.  The ladies kindly gave up their time to show the children traditional methods of working with wool after it has been gathered from sheep.

The session included looking at different types of wool from Jacob’s to Blue faced Leicester. The boys and girls then had a demonstration of the different methods of spinning and had a chance to use a range of equipment such as an authentic spinning wheel.

Everyone had a chance to prepare the wool by brushing it to remove any knots and debris, ready to then spin.

The boys and girls have learned more about traditional cottage industries linking to their ongoing farming topic.

#Successful Learners

Annual Sports Day

Portpatrick Primary held yet another successful sports day on Friday 7th of June.  Many friends and family members came along to cheer the boys and girls on in their sporting efforts.

The children competed in the following events:

  • Sprint – Class winners: Carter, Scott, Sophia, Ava Lily, Finlay & Rowan
  • Skipping – Class winners: Erin, Cameron, Rose, Ava Lily, Finlay & Rowan
  • Sack – Class winners: Carter, Cameron, Sophia, Ruby, Robin & Rowan
  • Egg and Spoon – Class winners: Erin & Carter, Atticus, Rose, Ruby, Finlay and Rowan
  • Throw – Class winners: Erin, Scott, Sophia, Lillie, Finlay &  Rowan
  • Distance – Class winners: Holly, Cameron, Sophia, Ava Lily, Finlay & Rowan
  • Obstacle – Class winners; Erin, Cameron, Liam, Isabella, Alfie and Myles

The winning didn’t stop there.  In pole position, in the highly competitive mum’s and dad’s races, were Kerry and Steve.  In the nursery race, Adam just pipped Ivy at the finish line.

Everyone demonstrated great determination and team spirit.

The day was rounded off with an ice lolly treat.

#Effective Contributors.

High Airyolland Farm Visit

P1-3 donned their wellies for a visit to High Airyolland as part of their learning about the farming industry.

Mr and Mrs McQuistin kindly took the children of a tour of their farmstead to give the children a sense of land use.  They all went up to the top of the hill to view the layout and different usage of the areas such as grazing and a wind turbine.

Dallas the sheepdog was a big hit as he demonstrated herding the sheep under the commands of Mr McQuistin.

The boys and girls observed Highland cows in the fields and learned from Mrs McQuistin that the shorter the horns, the younger the animal.  One old girl was 16 years old!

Back down at the main farm area, Mr McQuistin explained the different breeds of sheep – Beltex and Blue Faced Leicester.  They also have cross bred sheep from the two which has the lovely name of a Bluebell cross.  Mr McQuistin then gave a sheep sheering demonstration.  He told the children about how the wool is used. This will link in with the upcoming visit from weavers into the classroom.

Environmental responsibility was discussed as it was explained to the children how any plastic waste on the farm is responsibly disposed of.

No farm visit is complete without seeing a tractor up close.  The boys and girls were able to explore it.  Mrs McQuistin explained that because farms are so mechanised, you don’t have to be strong to be a farmer and that it can be a career choice for anyone.

The day was a great success, with just about everyone now wishing to become a farmer!

#Successful Learners

Click on each photo to have full view 🙂


The Rock Cycle – Through the medium of chocolate :)

P4 -7 became geologists today by modelling the rock cycle.  The natural rock cycle can take millions of years to achieve.  We simulated this entire process in an afternoon using chocolate.

Sedimentary Rock

We started off by making sedimentary rock that had been broken down into smaller pieces by the elements.  To do this, we:

  • Grated milk and white chocolate into flakes to represent different rock types
  • We built up our sediment in a pile on tin foil
  • It was then compressed by pressing down on the flakes wrapped in the foil
  • The resultant sedimentary rock sample can be seen in photographs below
  • The separate sediment deposits can be observed as white and dark sections.
1 – Breaking the chocolate into mixed sediment
2 – Compressing the sediment
3 – Sedimentary rock is formed

Sedimentary Changing To Metamorphic Rock

We then simulated high pressure and heat being applied to our sedimentary rock sample.  We achieved this by:

  • Putting our sample in a bag along with whole chunks of chocolate.
  • We squashed and squeezed the sample and let our body heat do the work
  • The results can be seen below. A harder, grainy texture is achieved as a result of changing from sedimentary to metamorphic rock.
4 – Applying heat and pressure to sedimentary rock
5 – Sedimentary rock changed to metamorphic rock

Metamorphic rock changing to Igneous Rock

To model the change from metamorphic rock to igneous rock, we:

  • Melted the chocolate over a Bain Marie.
  • The metamorphic rock melted as if it was exposed to extreme heat under the crust of the earth, becoming magma.
  • The melted sample was then cooled and formed in a flow, just like lava erupted from a volcano.
6 – Heat changes metamorphic rock to igneous rock

The cycle will start all over again with igneous rock breaking down to form sedimentary rock and so on…

Yoga – Outdoor Learning Day

P4-7 ended the Outdoor Learning Day’s activities by partaking of a relaxing yoga session in the sunshine.

We learned traditional yoga poses such as the tree, mountain, chair and warrior.  These positions help build core muscle strength.

We rounded off at home time with a mindfulness, calming visualisation activity; relaxing on the grass.

Everyone had a thoroughly enjoyable day packed full of purposeful activities.