The Summer term is proving to be another busy term for us here at Willow Dene! With so much going on it was hard to choose what to share! Have a read below to find out what the second half of the Summer term has in store for us and what we have already managed to squeeze into this busy final term!
This half term our whole school topic is ‘Sail the Seven Seas’ with a Science focus. There are lots of exciting things planned!
Kestrel class are using ICT to support their learning about seas and oceans of the world. Some of the children in Kestrel class will be creating PowerPoints and others will be using software to participate in fun, ocean themed learning activities. In Time, People, Place and Culture sessions, Kestrel class are exploring the life of a pirate and learning to read and understand maps.
Sparrow class are using the story ‘Message in a Bottle’ by Matt Hunt during their Literacy sessions, to develop their role play and speaking and listening skills, by creating ‘what can we see’ sea scrapes, as well as writing their very own messages in a bottle! In Science, Sparrow are learning how to make predictions about what items will sink and which will float and why.
In Osprey, children are enjoying imaginative and sensory play during Play and Leisure sessions, dressing up as pirates and exploring pirate themed sensory trays, finding treasuring and gems in their trays using maps!
As always, the summer term is packed full of opportunities for residential trips for our children here at Willow Dene.
At the end of last half term a group of children went on our Kingswood School Journey. This, as ever, was an action packed, fun-filled trip with so many activities for everyone to enjoy. Children got the chance to experience archery, Laser Tag, Frisbee Golf, fencing, a blindfolded obstacle course, a nature walk, environmental art, zipline and of course the infamous 3G Swing! There was also a first night campfire and cinema experience on the second night for children to enjoy. Everyone had a great time and we are very proud of our brave and courageous children.
We had our first ever School Sleepover during the second week back this half term, during which nine children spent the night in our Secondary site building at Oakmere Road. Some of us visited Bluewater and had dinner at Gourmet Burger Kitchen before heading to LUSH to try out some of their sleepy lotions to help us to get a good night’s sleep. Others stayed in school and used their ICT skills to order takeaway! We settled down and ended the evening with a film, projected onto the ceiling for some of us so we could watch whilst lying down. In the morning we all had breakfast together before our families came to collect us. We had lots of fun!
We also have our Downe School Journey and Margaret McMillan School Journey to look forward too, which are both taking place in July.
Willow Dene Sports Day
We had our first Sports Day in a few years this year, with the day being spread across our Swingate Lane school grounds and the Teviot Football grounds. There was lots going on with different stations for us all to explore. On our school grounds we held a sensory trail, which consisted of all different items from musical instruments, to bubbles, to food for us to engage all of our senses. On the Teviot grounds we had different sporting activities from quoits, to bowling to hook a duck. At each station we could collect a scented sticker which we added to our certificates, and once we had collected a sticker from each station we could show our completed certificates and collect a medal! In addition to all of these fun activities, we also hired a foam party and a bungee trampoline which everyone enjoyed!
School focus: Male role models
This term, as part of our whole school focus to support the wider needs of Willow Dene families, we have done a lot of work looking at male role models in our children’s lives.
Woodlark class have been finding stories and songs which are read by male figures or sung by males in order to introduce and ensure children hear male voices more frequently in their classroom.
Goldcrest class have organised for learning opportunities and sessions to be run by male role models that work at Willow Dene. Children have been out and about with our premises team, completing jobs such as delivering stock to classes which they have really enjoyed. Children in Goldcrest class have also had the opportunity to receive taught sessions by male teachers and further plans are underway for the remainder of the term.
Badger class organised a gardening morning linked to Father’s Day, where male relatives were invited into school to participate in gardening activities. Everyone really enjoyed gardening together!
This term we have also had a Multi-Cultural Cooking Week, where we had lots of opportunities to experience foods from around the world.
We had lots of staff from all different parts of the school volunteer to run sessions in our classes, teaching us how to make different recipes. Some of the recipes we made include Bhel Puri, Spring Rolls, Focaccia, Burritos, Vegetable Cake, Tunisian salad and Sorbet in a bag. We enjoyed tasting different foods, some that we had never tried before!
Our Sensory Processing Co-Ordinator also ran a food themed sensory story across the week, based on the book ‘6 Dinner Sid’ by Inga Moore.
Some classes had the chance to cook in the great outdoors, making Banana and Chocolate Pudding during their Forest School sessions.
Bexley Grammar also visited us and delivered a session to our KS3 classes, exploring ‘Freaky Food with Science’.