End of Term Letter - December 2018

Dear Parents,

Once again, I  have been thrilled with the wonderful range of activities and events that have taken place over the term. A huge thank you must be given to the whole of the staff team who have worked incredibly hard and the progress of the pupils has been super.  The whole school focus has been about Growth Mindset and “having a go!” I am thrilled that the children are really beginning to approach difficult topics with great determination and as I write, the whole school is looking forward to the class parties - always a treat!

Thanks to Mr Porter and Mr Connors, we have taken part in numerous football and netball matches.  The House Cross Country was excellent and the children achieved great personal success. In addition to our wonderful Harvest Celebration and our regular musical moments,  it was lovely to hear the children in Year 1 and Year 2 sing and perform in their Christmas productions. The Reception nativity was really delightful and, thanks to Ms Larkin and the staff,   the Carol Service was fantastic. Today, the choir are entertaining the elderly folk at Cochlar Court whom I know will appreciate their wonderful singing.

With secondary transfer looming, our Year 6 children are very well-prepared.  As well as having interview practice within the classroom, they were interviewed individually by Deborah Livsey (our C.O.O.) who has great experience as a member of interview panels.  It is always a pleasure to watch the Year 6 children as they take parents around - they are wonderful ambassadors for the School. I thoroughly enjoyed the first termly Year 6 breakfast and the children shared some super ideas about how to improve (many of their ideas have been implemented!).

Our assemblies this term have been rich and varied with a number of different guests including the police, Catherine Bennett, Brent Council’s Travel Plan Officer and local priest Father Andrew.  We also continued to promote our travel plan with a brilliant Bikers’ Breakfast and the JRSO’s have led the Road Safety Week and competition.  I am thrilled that we have gained another gold travel award. We were delighted to welcome parents AND a grandparent this term to come and talk to the Upper School;  the talks were so interesting and thought provoking - the children asked great questions. Please do contact the office if you wish to speak - we need you!

The Friends’ contribution to “extras” at Maple Walk has been fabulous.  Of course, the new play equipment at the front is enjoyed by all; the virtual reality day, a poet and author visits were excellent and Josh Boggi was inspirational, reminding the children again about the importance of being resilient and having a “growth” mindset instead of a “fixed” one. Furthermore, I must mention the fabulous Christmas Fair which raised a huge amount of money and was a tremendous success.  Thank you, to a great parent team!

Both in class and through workshops,  the pupils have also been reminded about internet safety and I would appreciate that all parents are vigilant about the time children spend on various digital devices.  It is advisable to keep a track on what your child is doing on their laptop or mobile phone and there are many apps to help you with this.

I am delighted that a large number of parents attended the Growth Mindset evening - Raising Confident Children and I understand that the workshops for the children have proved to be very beneficial;  I hope that these will become a regular annual feature.

We had a wonderful opportunity to meet Reception 2019 parents and their children at an informal afternoon and  Ms Cook and Ms Etienne (along with a few Year 5 children) assisted and we have another event planned for next term.  As part of our whole school marketing initiative, Reception have set up their own instagram account; please do follow them and spread the word!  https://www.instagram.com/maplewalkschooleyfs/

Saying goodbye to staff is never easy and tomorrow,  we will be saying farewell to Mrs Partridge. As I have mentioned before, she has been an invaluable asset to the staff team, we will miss her hugely and I wish her every success in her new school as she concentrates on teaching maths.  

I hope that your Christmas holiday with family and friends will be extremely restful and magical!