Dear North Tawton Friends and Families,
As many of you will be aware, North Tawton lost internet coverage this week. While many homes were without for a day or two, we still didn’t have internet access on Friday. I sincerely hope we have it back for Monday!
Three days of no internet at school has made me realise how reliant we have become on technology. We take registers online, arrange dinners online, use email to communicate with you and other agencies, and we use apps and websites throughout the day to keep records and seek information. Our lessons are greatly enhanced by showing video clips displaying diagrams, text and images.
One child said: ‘in the olden days, they used blackboards and chalk at school!’ this made me feel very old as not only did I use these as a child, I did when I started teaching!
Thank you for being patient with us, and thank you to staff for hot spotting and using their own phones so we could keep in touch and make important calls.
Zones of Regulation
In our Trust INSET training, we looked at the Zones of Regulation, how we can use this in school to help children recognise their emotional state, give the children language to discuss how they are feeling and ultimately, to regulate.
You might like to use this at home when talking to your children. The aim is to know how to regulate back to the green zone where we are psychologically safe. Children often need support to recognise their zone – partially the yellow zone, and need advice to regulate, this called ‘co regulation’.
We are making it clear that there are no ‘bad’ feelings, it is what we do with our feelings that matters. Anger is an emotion that can enable change, such as women getting the vote, workers having sick pay and children having protection and rights. Sadness is also something we should express and not be ashamed off.
Questions were asked about being excited, and why this is in the ‘yellow zone’ and not the green. We do of course want our children to be excited about their learning! Adults will recognise the difference between eager curiosity and hypervigilance and over excitement. When we are over excited, our brain can’t focus on acquiring new knowledge and skills.
Do see more information about this here: The Zones of Regulation | A Curriculum For Emotional Regulation
Our attendance continues to be lower than the national average, and our attendance officer has highlighted this. Letters are going home regarding levels of absence, so you are aware of how much your child has missed. Unless they are too ill to be at school, please make sure children are in school on time. We all have days we feel a bit under the weather, especially this time of year, but the majority of the time we need to build resilience and overcome this. Teachers are always willing to support with advice, encouragement, praise and stickers!
Holidays in term time are not authorised. I understand how frustrating this is as the travel companies hike up their prices during school holidays. However, attendance is important, there is a direct link between attendance and attainment and we really do need children in school so we can give them every opportunity to succeed.
Last week, Mr Whitley and Miss Paton conducted an audit of maths across the school They looked at books, observed lessons and spoke to children. We have identified maths as an area we need to focus on this year and we were glad that there were lots of positives from the audit. However, we still have children who are less confident in maths than they are in reading and in writing. We have an action plan to focus on raising achievement and enjoyment of maths. We will talk to you about this in our next parent meetings.
Mr Morrow Visit
On Friday, Mr Dan Morrow our Trust CEO, visited. He was really impressed by the attitudes of the children and enjoyed talking to the staff about what progress the children they work with are making. He was particularly impressed with the French teaching in Reception - thank you Marion, how well the staff know the needs of the pupils in their classes, the classroom environments and the conversations he had with pupils about their learning.
He will be visiting regularly so he becomes a familiar face, and we can benefit from his advice and support.
We have lots of lost property at school! I am going to put it out on the hall tables after school on Monday so please pop in and see what you can find!
We are not going to continue to store uniform at school. Please use this link to order new uniform. https://www.brigade.uk.com/parents/school/NO4360PD/
As always, please click on the links below for class news
· Sycamore Class
· Hazel Class
· Ash Class
· Willow Class
· Beech Class
· Chestnut Class
· Oak Class
· Acorn Class
Sadly, we say farewell to Lucy Lamb this week. She has been at North Tawton for five years and has been an integral part of developing our nursery provision. She has been a wonderful practitioner and colleague and will be missed. We wish her all the very best in her new adventures ahead.
Wrap up warm and take good care