This week we have finished our block of ‘Making a Difference’ assemblies but we’re far from finished making a difference! Each class was asked to come up with ways to make a difference together and every family was asked to think of ways they could help their community. Today in assembly we all heard brilliant stories of our children helping neighbours to tidy up their gardens after Storm Ali had wreaked havoc, walking a neighbour’s dog, giving unwanted toys to another child and taking a homeless person something to eat and drink. We talked about the fact that although those things feel small, they will have meant a great deal to the people involved and it may inspire them to do soemthing to make a difference themselves.
There are some brilliant plans afoot to make a difference in classes and some that have already got started. P2 have been collecting litter in the playground and after the weather we’ve had this week they have had their work cut out collecting bits that have blown in off the street! P7 are starting a break and lunchtime play programme from Monday which will run every lunchtime and Friday morning breaks. The P7s have a rota for who is on ‘play duty’ and the games will change each day. I think they’ll have to exercise crowd control on Monday! P1 have been looking at food waste and we’re hoping that our school food waste bin will arrive any day now, swiftly followed by our packaging bin.
P4 opened our eyes to the amount of plastic that we’re using with our daily milk and, despite only 6 children in the class having milk each day, they have collected a small bucket full of straws in the 3 weeks that we’ve been focussing on Making a Difference in assembly.
After assembly, I worked out that over the school year, P1-7 use an unbelievable 16,575 straws, all made of plastic and packaged in plastic. So, with P4, we’ve made a plan that from Monday we will use re-usable drinking cups in every class and collect the straws that we would have used. Thank you to Mr Forrest who found enough cups for everyone in a cupboard! Check back in a month to see how big the pile is and what our next steps are…
Don’t forget that this weekend is the Colony of Artists festival. The school is a venue and it’s looking fantastic! Please come and visit us as well as the rest of the artists who take part, including lots of Abbeyhill children! Check back next week for some fantastic photos.
Sally Ketchin, Head Teacher
The whole school has been buzzing with Maths activity this week as everyone took part in a house Outdoor Maths Challenge and a variety of activities in class, as well as a homework photo challenge for Scottish Maths Week. Everyone shared what they had done in assembly this morning and activities ranged from Maisie of Morningside made out of 2D shapes in P1 to a ‘build your own theme park’ budget challenge in P5. P7 had to apply their knowledge of Maths to real life situations and have discovered just how widely Maths is used in everyday situations. Mrs Flowers has assured us that she has already had some great entries for the ‘Extreme Maths’ homework photo competition and we’re all looking forward to seeing the rest next week! Maths Week continues in lots of places over the weekend so click here to find out what else you could get up to.
We’ve also had Parent Council this week and it was lovely to welcome some of our new Nursery and P1 parents. It was a packed agenda with discussion on a wide range of topics but food became a central theme (not just because we had some yummy homemade biscuits made by James and John) as we discussed our plans to have parents for lunch so they can try school lunches for themseles, the imminent arrival of our food recycling bin and full fat vs semi-skimmed milk. The next meeting is the AGM and all are very welcome.
P5 Play Champions began their training with Canongate Youth’s Play Rangers yesteday so we look forward to having more play experts in the playground! Our Loose Parts play continues to be very popular and it will be used much more at play and lunchtimes next week. P2 – P7 Pupil Council met for the first time today and received their first assignment…watch this space. We all had great fun doing a jumping photo for the display board! P1s will join us in January once they’ve fully settled into school routines.
Have a great weekend – don’t forget that it’s a bank holiday and there’s no school on Monday 17th September. School resumes as normal on Tuesday. It’ll be a busy one next week as we prepare for the Colony of Artists festival!
Sally Ketchin, Head Teacher
We have been really busy in P2 this week trying to ‘Make a Difference’as part of our Building Resilience topic. We decided as a class that we would try to make a difference in the playground and do some litter picking to make it a nicer place for all of the children to play in.
We have also had another mystery reader come in to class to read us a story. This time it was Archie’s Mum who read us a lovely ‘Maisie from Morningside’ story. The story was a special book to Archie because it was signed by the author! Thank you to Archie’s Mum for coming in and we look forward to finding out who the next ‘Mystery Reader’ will be.
We have started our ‘Mystery Reader’ sessions in P2 where we have a surprise visitor come into class to read a story to us before home time. This week we had Chloe’s Mum. It was such a lovely surprise and we look forward to welcoming some more mystery readers into our class over the coming weeks.
We’ve all been ‘busy bees’ at Abbeyhill this week and we really enjoyed a visit from Gill Smith, one of the founders of the Colony of Artists festival and Iliyana Nedkova, Abbeyhill parent, our Curator in Residence and Colony of Artists committee member, at our assembly this morning. Gill and Iliyana presented prizes to winners and finalists of the Busy Bees art competition. Winners received a beautifully presented bundle of art materials each whilst finalists got a souvenir poster to display in their classroom. Look out for a trail of bees around Abbeyhill ahead of the upcoming Colony of Artists festival on 22 and 23 September!
On Tuesday afternoon, we had our annual Meet the Teacher event. We tried something slightly different this year with a small ‘marketplace’ event with a few of our community partners in the hall before a short welcome from myself and the teaching staff, followed by a chance to have a look rounmd classrooms and an informal chat between staff and parents. Feedback on the night was very positive so next year look out for more stalls and more time to speak to the partners who help to make Abbeyhill so special! A big thanks to Iliyana Nedkova (mentioned above), Simon Preston, Chair of our Parent Council, Russell McLarty, minister at Meadowbank Church and Scottish Storyteller and Gary Young from The Mindful Enterprise who came along on the evening and of course thanks to all the families who attended.
Next week it’s Scottish Maths Week and Mrs Flowers and Miss Macdonald have been busy preparing what looks to be a mathematically challenging but fun week of activities! Check back next week to find out how it went. It’s also Parent Council on Wednesday and I hope to see some new faces among the familiar ones!
Sally Ketchin, Head Teacher