Unfortunately Greenfield Gardens seems once again to have become a magnet for litter droppers, inconsiderate dog walkers and drug users over the last week. We have contacted Dudley Council Plus this morning and have been told that a cleaning crew will be out to deal with the problem today. Please remind your children to be careful, especially in the bushes, where used sharps have been found before. If you have any concerns about the cleanliness of the park, do not hesitate to bring them to our attention and we shall get on the case immediately. You may of course choose to contact Dudley Council Plus on 0300 5552345.
It is with great sadness that I share the passing of Mrs Jeannette Hill, the much loved former Headmistress of Greenfield and a very significant person in the history of our school. Mrs Hill was originally appointed to the headship of the old Hill Street School. During her time in post, she oversaw the closure of the old school and the design, construction and opening of our very own Greenfield Primary School as our school’s first Headteacher. She was kind enough to help us launch our Reading Champions in a special assembly three years ago, when she inspired us with her passion for literature and her own love of reading. Mrs Jeannette Hill has always been described by those who knew her as ‘the most lovely and beautiful person’. She will always be remembered as an elegant, gracious, genuine lady and a wonderful Headteacher.
Last Friday saw the whole of Key Stage 2 enjoying a wonderful day of outdoor adventure activities at the award winning Top Barn Activity Centre. Located 6 miles north of Worcester, Top Barn Activity Centre is situated on a working farm in the beautiful Worcestershire countryside. The aim of the day was to promote teambuilding, develop confidence, learn new skills and give all our children the chance to experience challenging, action-packed adventure activities with qualified instructors.
We were delighted to have warm and wind-free weather at this stunning location and our children certainly made the most of what was on offer. I arrived just after lunch and the day was in full flow. Our 163 children had been organised into 14 groups and were making their way around a carousel of activities. Several groups were on the 10 acre lake. Two groups were learning the basics of open canoeing and the importance of teamwork as they explored the lake. Other groups had designed and built their own rafts out of barrels, ropes and logs and were aiming to successfully make it across the lake without the raft breaking up. Another two groups were learning the delights of ‘wobbly boarding’ – that’s wind surfing without the sail and using hands as paddles with two or three children sitting and wobbling on the board. It was just as well that all the children had brought a full change of clothes!
The land based activities included climbing, archery and rifle shooting. The 7 metre purpose built artificial climbing wall tested our nimble climbers and provided a fantastic experience for anyone new to the sport. The climbing routes are designed to allow anybody to get to the top no matter their climbing level. The ancient art of archery was especially challenging and required patience and determination. The rifle shooting required a steady hand and a keen eye, but some children had a real flair for it and managed 5 out of 5 bull’s eyes!
We have received some positive feedback but would really appreciate it if parents could let us know if you value these experiences for your children. We believe outdoor adventure boosts self-confidence, gives a real sense of personal achievement and helps children to develop independence and resilience. We shall be offering bellboating during the week before the half term break with the opportunity for parents to be involved too. Bellboating is canoeing in a double hulled canoe on still or slow-moving water and does not involve getting wet. Please let me know if you would like to have a go.
It has been great to see our new Reception children coming to ‘big’ school as a cohort of 40 this week. For the first time we carried out our home visits during the Summer Term. This has enabled the children to start at the same time as the rest of our school and I have been impressed this week with how well the children are already settling in. There is a ‘Wave Goodbye, Say Hello’ coffee morning on Monday 15 September at 9.00 am, which is aimed at welcoming all our new parents but also open to our more established Mums and Dads and families. You will also have the chance to find out all about life at Greenfield from our new Head Boy Toby Gorner, Head Girl Jessica Noble, Deputy Head Boy Ben Harper and Deputy Head Girl Bethan Rees. Please do your best to join us for a coffee after you have waved goodbye to your children and come and say hello to fellow parents.
This morning all of our children in Key Stage 2 travelled to the award winning Top Barn Activity Centre for a day of outdoor adventure activities. The aim of the day was to promote teambuilding, develop confidence and give all our children the chance to experience challenging adventure activities. We are keen to introduce all our children to a broad and interesting range of sports and outdoor pursuits and will be offering bellboating again this term with the opportunity for parents to be involved too. We shall provide a full report on our day of adventure in next week’s newsletter but if you would like to find out more about Top Barn please look at www.topbarnactivity.com.
We use our Houses at Greenfield to support and encourage excellent behaviour as well as developing the children’s responsibility and independence. It is a successful system and is very popular with our children. We have four houses, each with its own house colour; Stevens (blue), Lyttleton (yellow), Webb (red) and Foley (green). Each House met last week to elect their new Captains and Vice Captains. Year 6 pupils in each House may choose to stand for election and have to give an election speech outlining their vision and plans for the coming school year. This year’s successful candidates are:
House Captains: Owen Rowlands & Molly Hall
Vice Captains: Connor Palmer & Lola Tait
House Captains: Joe Owen & Grace Sisley-Smith
Vice Captains: Jenson Ollerenshaw & Eloise Kent
House Captains: Ned Saunders & Isabel Norton
Vice Captains: Toby Holt & Niamh Timmins
House Captains: Ben Atherton & Lauren Stewart
Vice Captains: Reuben Allen & Joss Partridge
We would also like to congratulate our new Head Boy Toby Gorner, Head Girl Jessica Noble, Deputy Head Boy Ben Harper and Deputy Head Girl Bethan Rees. Well done! We look forward to seeing you make a big contribution to life and learning at Greenfield throughout your time in Year 6.
It has been great to see all our children and families again after the summer break. The children have settled back into our work and routines with the minimum of fuss and I am pleased with such an excellent start to the new school year. It has also been a pleasure to see our new teachers working with their new classes this week. Mr Joshua Aldersley, Miss Nicola Tyler and Miss Becky Lewis excelled themselves throughout our rigorous selection process last term, worked with us during our transition weeks and have spent a lot of time in school during the holidays getting ready for the new term. We are also very pleased to welcome our new site manager, Mr James Butler. James started with us in mid August and is already putting his many talents to good use on our site. We also extend a warm welcome to Mrs Helen Baynham, Mrs Joanne Jones and Miss Emily Grubb, three specialist Early Years practitioners, who have joined our Reception team
We have made considerable improvements to our site for each of the last six years but we are especially pleased that our playground has been resurfaced during the summer holidays. The poor state of our old playground with its slippery, gritty surface was the main cause of children’s accidents at Greenfield. It is a delight to see the children running and even lying down on the smooth surface! Our first aiders have already seen a decrease in the number of slips and graze injuries. As one of our Year 5 girls explained to Miss Cook: ‘I’ve just fallen over but it didn’t hurt me like I thought it would’. The old play apparatus had come to the end of its life and has been removed; it will be replaced by a large new piece of apparatus, which will be installed between the boat and the wigwams this term. If you do come into our building, I am sure you will be as impressed as we are with our beautiful new carpets throughout our corridors and offices. Additionally we have replaced our wireless network, upgraded our operating systems and bought a suite of netbooks and iPads, which will increase our children’s computing opportunities and enhance learning in our classrooms.
Our two key priorities are to ensure that your children are happy in our school and that each child achieves academic success by making excellent progress in their learning. We are very keen for you to be involved in your child’s learning and value the important contribution to learning that you make at home. To help parents to find out more about how early reading skills are learned and taught at Greenfield, we shall be running two Parent’s Reading and Phonics Workshops. The first is on Thursday 18 September and is aimed at parents of Year 1 children and the second is on Wednesday 1 October for parents of Reception children. Please put these dates in your diary and come along ready to take part.
We look forward to welcoming all our children and families back to Greenfield for the start of the new school year on Tuesday 2 September. The school gates will open at 8.45 am as usual. We have been busy during the holidays and do hope you will notice all the many improvements both inside and outside. Make sure you look smart in your uniforms, children, and be ready for an exciting start to the term with your new classes and teachers.
This final week of our school year at Greenfield has been a very special one. Saying goodbye to our Year 6 pupils, who are moving on to the next phase of their education, is especially difficult. While we feel happy celebrating their successes and achievements, we all feel sad that they are leaving us and that we won’t have the chance to work so closely together again. It was a privilege to attend the Year 6 Prom Night on Tuesday evening. The quality of performances across the whole year band was exceptional and the parents of our Year 6 pupils were treated to a showcase of the children’s gifts and talents. We are especially grateful to our Year 6 staff team for putting in such a huge effort to make this last half term so memorable for our pupils with the excitement of rehearsals, performances, educational visits and the Prom.
As our Year 6 pupils leave Greenfield, we say goodbye to 23 of our families, whose youngest or only child is moving on. The three elements of partnership between children, parents and school are central to my philosophy and vision for our school. This close co-operation between home and school has helped these children to feel secure, gain confidence and meet with success. We thank our Year 6 parents for being such an important part of their children’s education and for working so closely with us. Do the same with your child’s new secondary school and your child will not fail to do well. Remember, you will always be welcome in our school and we do hope you will stay in touch.
Today we also say a final farewell to our staff leavers. We are very grateful to Mrs Jane Underwood and Mr Andrew Brettell for all their invaluable work and wish them all the best for an active, happy and healthy retirement. We also wish good luck to Miss Jane Kelly, Mrs Karen Morris, Mrs Clare Heather, Mrs Sarah Hodson and Miss Debbie Robbins. I am sure you will join me in thanking all of these staff for their effort and commitment throughout their time at Greenfield and wishing them all the very best for future success.
I would like to thank every single member of our superb staff team at Greenfield for all their dedication, inspiration and hard work throughout this school year. We have all worked hard to continue to build on our ‘Outstanding’ status and this school year has brought us considerable, continued success. Our recent academic, creative and sporting achievements are well-deserved rewards for our children, staff and everyone connected with our school. Thank you all so much for your continued involvement, support and warm words of praise and congratulations.
We wish you all a safe and happy summer holiday and look forward to seeing all our children and families on Tuesday 2 September at 8.45 am for the start of the Autumn Term.
Best wishes for a peaceful and relaxing Summer Holiday from the Greenfield Team.