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Head of Primary Message Week 30

Learning to read... 📖

As a school, we are not particularly interested in trends or fads. It is important for us to always insist on the very highest standards and this is exemplified in our approaches to teaching and learning. I know that parents would not expect anything less. We are very aware of the incredible commitment parents have made and that you entrust us with your child's education. As a result, we ensure that what and how we teach is always research and evidence driven.

We do what we do because it is proven to work.

Perhaps more than in any other aspect of school life, our approach to reading is a great example of our commitment. Across the world, many different approaches have come and gone over the years, many proven with hindsight to have had a detrimental impact on outcomes. Learning to read using a systematic phonics programme is proven to work. Phonics is a critical part of learning to read because it teaches children the relationship between letters and sounds, which is essential for decoding words.

Across Year 1 and Year 2, we are currently reporting progress in phonics to parents. This is really important as we believe all students deserve a bespoke and targeted programme of study to meet their specific needs. There are no short cuts and staff at ISB are experts in ensuring everyone excels. Parents in Year 1 and Year 2 can expect to receive individual notifications in Seesaw over the next few weeks.

A comprehensive overview of our phonics programme, and a general overview of our approaches to reading, can also be accessed here:

I hope that this information is useful for parents and helps to nurture an effective home-school partnership.

Student Leadership 🙋🏽‍♂️

Providing opportunities for student leadership is an essential part of education, and we are committed to providing students with the tools they need to succeed, not only academically but also as future leaders. Student Leadership is important as it boosts self-confidence, challenging students to step out of their comfort zones, helping them to build self-esteem and confidence in their abilities. These opportunities also develop communication skills, ensuring students learn to express their ideas clearly and listen to others, which is crucial for effective teamwork and collaboration.

Taking on leadership roles teaches students about accountability and being responsible for their actions and decisions. Student leaders often face challenges that require creative and critical thinking, helping students to become adept problem-solvers. We also know that these opportunities promote empathy and a wider social awareness.

At ISB, we have a number of opportunities for Primary students to further extend their leadership skills. Students in Year 3 and above can apply to be members of the Student Council or Lunchtime Rangers:

🗣️Student Council members represent the students in their Year Group. They attend important meetings each week and provide feedback to staff on how to improve school life. They organise charitable events, and are available to help new students. Student Council members wear a specially designed blue shirt one day per week. Open to all students in Yr3 to Yr6. New and returning members welcome.

🤠 Lunchtime Rangers help to organise playground and lunchtime activities for students of all ages. This is a high-energy role and each ranger wears a specially designed cap to ensure they are easily identified. There is a small budget for Lunchtime Rangers to spend on games and activities throughout the year. Open to all students in Yr3 to Yr6. New and returning members welcome.

Applications will open early in Term 1 of the next academic year for both Lunchtime Rangers and Student Council members. However, we are about to launch our search for the next House Captains. This is the highest level of student leadership available to students in Primary. House captains are exclusively Year 6 students and the application process opens next week for all current Year 5 students. Look out for specific details about each candidate coming soon.

It's been a busy week... 🤩

This week six more students have Gone Green in Times Tables Rock Stars.

Pre Kindy have been following a map and going on a bear hunt, Kindy have been using a pulley system to hoist sand, Reception have been creating and maintaining a beat in Music class, Year 1 delighted us all with their incredible showcase of learning, Year 2 have been using conjunctions in their writing, Year 3 have been analysing seed growth in Science, Year 4 have been experimenting with teeth, Year 5 have been in the Science lab, and Year 6 have been making participatory art.

If you have any questions about any aspect of school life, please do not hesitate to message me in Seesaw.

Mr Michael Everett | Head of Primary


🗓️ Friday 10th May: Primary Music Showcase 🎶 (Yr1 to Yr6)

🗓️ Wednesday 15th to Thursday 16th May: Yr4 Seria Sleepover

🗓️ Friday 17th May: Year 2 Assembly

🗓️ Friday 24th May: Celebration of Learning (open morning)

🗓️ Friday 24th May: Reception Concert

🗓️ Friday 24th to Saturday 25th May: Year 3 Sleepover

🗓️ Friday 7th June: Swim Gala Reception, Year 1 and Year 2

🗓️ Tuesday 11th June: BJSL Tag Rugby & Netball (BJSL Squad)

🗓️ Friday 14th June: Yr6 Ceremony

🗓️ Friday 21st June: Swim Gala Year 3 to Year 6

🗓️ Friday 28th June: Year 5 Young Entrepreneurs Assembly

🗓️ Friday 5th July: Last day of term


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