I was really glad to see all the children back in class this week. We have taken a fairly gentle start to getting back into routine. Everyone settled down really well and are working and playing enthusiastically. Quite a few children seem to have grown an inch or two over lockdown.
On Tuesday we started a new project on Robotics, the Primary 7s are working on the First Lego League challenge and have spent a bit of time starting their first tasks and getting their heads round all the boxes and elements of the challenge. The Team will have to use teamwork, innovate and investigate values while building lego, programming robots and solving problems.
Meanwhile the primary sixes are working on programming micro:bit move robots. I was really please by how well they remembered and used their micro:bit skills and worked independently. I am looking forward to seeing them learn more coding and apply that to some maths and problem solving.
On Wednesday we went for a walk to Dow’s wood. We were looking for signs of spring, there are not too many about yet. Some trees, hawthorn are starting to put out leaves and we found some hazel catkins. It was a beautiful, clear day. After some adventures in the mud the class had a game of hide and seek. Back in school we have been recording our afternoons in individual ways, showing lots of creativity.
There have been plenty of other things going on this week, some good writing, accurate maths and brilliant fielding. I am looking forward to next week.
We had out Christmas party this week, slightly quieter than usual, as we had to stick to our bubbles. The Biggies managed to enjoy themselves. My favourite part is watching some of the pupils being wrapped up.
Episode 3 of the Banton Biggies Podcast came out this week. The pupils are organising, writing, recording and editing this by themselves.
We didn’t have a full week but the Biggies have had a creative one.
On Tuesday afternoon we went on a tiktok photowalk round the playground. We tried out some of the techniques we have been learning from Dave’s Tiktok Photowalks site.
Later in the week we have been working on material to help the younger children in the school understand “Clever Never Goes”, a way of staying safe. The class were brilliant at working together, showing leadership, cooperation, act, problem solving and creative skills. Most of the class worked in video but one group used scratch.
We hope to publish the video and animation next week.
As usual the dens in the playground continue to develop and change:
What an amazing class. The Biggies have posted nearly 180 posts to their e-Portfolios since the school closed. Some children even posted over the holidays. This post should give you a bit of an idea about the range of things they have been learning about in that time. They have certainly kept me busy reading their work! This is a small section of things they have posted.
The featured image above is Alice & Ben’s rainbow gate!
I know there are other children who are too busy learning with and helping their family to add to their blogs and have been in touch with the school in other ways. I am looking forward to hearing about their adventure when we get back to normal. Meanwhile my favourite part of the day is Biggie Blog reading. See the Gallery
The main highlight of my week was the Sharing of Learning for Parents on Thursday. The class made me really proud. Even though we only rehearsed this week, they did a brilliant job, speaking clearly, dancing and singing well. For a wee school Banton makes a lot of noise.
We shared our news films about the Scottish Wars of Independence. For a first try at a large project using iMovie and a green screen the class did really well. Better than their research or ICT skills was the way the pupils worked together. Last weeks, mind-maps show the skills we used (I’ll add more to that post next week)
The movie turned out to be a bit big to show on the blog but I think the parents enjoyed watching.
At maths time the pupils continue to astonish me with their mental maths. Some of the p4 and 5s in particular really aim high. All of the pupils are really making progress with their number talks and explain how they ‘do’ mental maths.
We are looking forward to World Book day next week.
We were doing some character description in our writing today. We watched The OceanMaker, which is a great video and the pupils wrote short pieces of text focusing on describing Katrina. They produced some great work.
Jonah came up with:
Katrina was gently holding her big wound. Glancing at her bloody hand, washing all the blood away with her painful tears.
We have been working on the grid method of multiplication I challenged some of the children to make something to teach younger children about this. Heather & Rhea made this video.
I hope there will be some more videos next week.
We have a new pupil, Kaitlyn, who is setting in well and working hard: Welcome to the Biggies Kaitlyn.
We had a visit from a Pedagogy teacher Mr Dorman today he lead the class in some Number Talks, the pupils worked hard, behaved perfectly and enjoyed the lesson. We look forward to Mr Dorman coming in over the next few weeks to help with our maths lesson.
As usual the Biggies have been a delightful company. Here are a few things that have stood out for me.
Jess painted a marvellous picture of a poppy. She did a brilliant job of tinting and shading.
Rhea worked very independently in literacy. She researched the meaning and pronunciation of some new words using an online dictionary, wrote sentence to show she understood the meanings and recorded her self reading the sentences showing she had learnt how to pronounce the words correctly!
We started our e-Portfolios by adding our first targets of the year. The children in primary four and five had not used e-Portfolios before. I was amazed to see that 3 of them had posted to their e-portfolios from home. Not only that they had customised their blogs even though I had only mentioned that it could be done. Well done Grace, Rhuraidh M and Alice. Grace posted a beautiful picture taken from her window, Rhuraidh some lovely ones of his family’s cat. Alice found some Red Tractor labels while food shopping after we had been talking about them in class.