The Headteacher's Blog
Welcome to Lydgate Junior School.
We aim to ensure that all children receive a high quality, enjoyable and exciting education.
We feel that our school is a true reflection of the community we serve. Lydgate children are well motivated and come from a range of social and cultural backgrounds. Within the school community we appreciate the richness of experience that the children bring to school. This enhances the learning experiences of everyone and it also gives all pupils the opportunity to develop respect and tolerance for each other by working and playing together. We want your child's time at Lydgate to be memorable for the right reasons - that is, a happy, fulfilling and successful period of his/her childhood.
Welcome to Year 3!
The Y3 Team includes Mrs Dutton & Mrs de Brouwer (3D/deB), Miss Cunningham (3EC), Mrs Webb & Mrs Watkinson (3W/W) and Miss Roberts & Mrs Noble (3AR). We have three Teaching Assistants who work with small groups and help across the four classes: Mrs Dale, Ms Kania and Mr Swain. Mrs Proctor, one of the School Governors, also helps out in all four classes.
We will use this blog to keep you up-to-date with all the exciting things that we do in Year 3, share some of the things that the children learn and show you some of their fantastic work. We hope you enjoy reading it!
The Y3 team.
Welcome to the Year 5 Blog page.
The Year 5 teaching team includes our class teachers, Mrs Parker (5AP), Mrs Rougvie and Mrs Jones (5RJ), Miss Reasbeck and Mrs Ridsdale (5RR) and Mrs Holden (5SH). . Many children are supported by Mrs Hill and Mrs Allen (the Year 5Teaching Assistants) who work with children across the 4 classes. Our Year 5 teaching team aims to create a stimulating learning environment that is safe, happy, exciting and challenging, where each pupil is encouraged to achieve their full potential.
As a parent or carer, you play a massively important role in your child's development and we'd love to work closely with you. Please feel free to make an appointment to see us if you want to discuss your child's attitude to learning, their progress, attainment or anything else that might be on your mind. We'd also love to hear from you if you have any skills that we could use to make our Year 5 curriculum even more exciting. Are you an avid reader, a talented sportsman, a budding artist, a mad scientist or a natural mathematician? Would you be willing to listen to children read on a regular basis? If so, please contact your child’s class teacher. Similarly, if you have a good idea, a resource, a 'contact' or any other way of supporting our learning in year 5, please let us know.
We are working very hard to ensure your child has a successful year 5, please help us with this by ensuring your child completes and returns any homework they are given each week. If there are any issues regarding homework or your child finds a particular piece of homework challenging, then please do not hesitate to come and speak to us. In order to help improve your child’s reading skills, increase their vocabulary and develop their comprehension skills, we also ask that you listen to your child read and ask them questions to ensure they have understood what they have read.
We look forward to keeping you up to date on the exciting things that we do in year 5 through our year group blog.
The Year 5 Team
We are the children in Y6 at Lydgate Junior School. There are 120 of us and our teachers are: Mrs Purdom, Mrs Phillips, Mrs Loosley and Mrs Wymer. Our Monday and Thursday morning teachers are Mrs Farrell, Miss Lee and Mr Jones.We are also very lucky to be helped by Mrs Ainsworth, Mrs Cooper, Mr Jenkinson, Mrs Biggs and Mrs Dawes. We use this space to share all of the great things that are happening in our classrooms. Join us each week on our learning journey....
We had this term’s full Governing Body meeting last night. Governors gave me the full-on ‘support and challenge’ on all I presented, which included a further pupil performance data analysis, and a discussion about our treasured ‘rich and engaging curriculum’. I sparked a discussion about the conflict it causes between teaching times for elements of the curriculum offer – how do we teach more arithmetic without less music or forest school or art or PE?
Surely, one Governor asked, there is good evidence of a link between art and sport engagement and academic achievement?
There are correlations sure enough, but not proven causal links. A statistician will be able to tell you the difference – correlation is basically that two independent observable factors can move in a synchronised way, but be totally without link or have one causing the other:
Chocolate consumption and Nobel Prize winners per capita (countries that eat more chocolate win more Nobel prizes!)
IQ and Religiosity – 25% to 60% religiosity is correlated to the highest IQ scores (as in where that % said religion was important to them, drawn against an IQ measure of the country). The more extreme the importance of religion the lower the average IQ!
Autism diagnosis and organic food sales, 1998 to 2007 (Both show a trebling over the same period – does one cause the other?)
Shoe size is correlated with reading ability. (So your brains ARE in your feet?)
Star Sign is correlated, when younger, with IQ, but the correlation diminishes over time. (Librans and Scorpios score significantly higher in tests than any other star sign up to at least age 9. They also get picked in teams for their country in most contact sports more than others.)
Children who get privately tutored get worse grades than children who do not get tutored. (So tutoring must un-teach?)
The school with the best sporting pedigree may or may not be ‘best’ academically. The definition of ‘best’ is hard enough. Opportunity, health, wealth, family support, aspiration, tradition, facilities, selection of sports, funding, and so on may all be factors. And even if a school holds both top positions it still does not mean that the one causes the other. ‘Freakonimics’ did a marvellous job of debunking some of these myths – the number of books in the home correlates to the child’s school success. So in order to solve illiteracy all we have to do is put a load of books in every home? Might it not be also something to do with what you do with those books, and others, and talk and wider reading?
The frequency of a family eating together has a stronger correlation to academic grades than does whether the children live with one or two parents. In order to safeguard a child’s academic success we should provide the family home with a dining table? Is that where we should spend Pupil Premium income?
Given competent providers, up to an hour per day of physical activity can be added to the school curriculum by taking time from other subjects without risk of hindering academic achievement. On the other hand, adding time to "academic" or "curricular" subjects by taking time from a physical education programmes does not enhance grades in these subjects and may be detrimental to health. (So being active doesn’t make you cleverer, and physical fitness, rather than physical activity, does not associate / correlate with academic grades. You might lose weight but you won’t get better grades.)
Learning an instrument makes you better at maths? Psychology Today says, ‘researchers note that children who play a musical instrument may already have executive functioning abilities that somehow attract them to music and predispose them to stick with their lessons, ‘ that, ‘children and adults with extensive musical training show enhanced executive function when compared to non-musicians,’ and they use the word ‘might’ to describe a possible causal link.
May, might, and extensive. Even with ‘extensive’ practice it is still only may and might. And they may already have been that way before they took up the instrument.
Last time, in this blog, I referenced research into factors parents, of different income brackets, use to select schools. Examination outcomes were much stronger for middle and higher income parents. If we do not make the grade, literally, we are likely to have very difficult conversations ahead of us with parents, no matter how rich and engaging our curriculum may be. Not 'making the grade' would be the ultimate test of parents', and Governors', commitment to the school's vision.
Causation is where one thing does directly or indirectly lead to another. Not the same thing.
The demise of inter-school competitive sport has long been a feature of the popular press, and sometime Government Ministers.
They have clearly never heard of SFSS - Sheffield Federation for School Sports, and the annual winter cross country league. The first event of this season was run, quite literally, this morning, just over the hill in Crookes. Overcast, wet and slippery it may have been, but getting on for 800 children were there, with mums and dads, sisters and brothers, dogs, teachers and the odd Headteacher, even. 800 children, at 9:30 on a Saturday morning, just to run around the edge of a big, sloping field, and probably not win.
But there they were, and how they were applauded for every effort and every place they finished.
The series is held in parks across the city, and all are free to enter for spectators. The atmosphere is so positive and warm - I love it. Have a cheap morning out on the 26th of September over at Ecclesfield Primary School for event two (with Concord Parkrun just before, perhaps?).