The Easter break is almost here and you will see from our Year Group news how much has been covered this term!
Thank you to everyone who attended parents’ evenings over the last couple of weeks, I hope you found this useful to see your children’s books and be able to meet with my teachers. It was lovely to see so many of you drop by to see me as you arrived or as you left, with such kind words about our school and all that we are doing. This means so much to us but equally if you have any concerns or worries, we are always here for you.
This very busy term, I really enjoyed staying over with our Year 4 children and staff on their Ufton Court trip which was action-packed as always and a very memorable residential that the children will no doubt remember fondly when they recall all the activities. My most memorable part (apart from the banquet) was the afternoon of learning Viking skills, a favourite of which was using a flint to make a spark!
Another event that I really enjoyed was the WASMA concert with the rehearsals and final performance at the Hexagon on Sunday 12th March. I felt very privileged to have seen our children sing, dance and perform so professionally on stage, whilst smiling throughout and loving every minute of it. It was a long afternoon and evening and everyone worked very hard to make it a great success. My thanks to Mrs Broadhurst and Miss Noad for all their support with rehearsals but also to Mrs Yeatman who spent many an early morning rehearsing with our dance group. You will all hopefully have a chance to see this dance and hear one of the songs when the children perform again during our King’s Coronation picnic – an invitation to this will be shared with you after Easter.
Our recent PTA disco was a great success and raised much needed funds. Our thanks to all involved as these events cannot take place without parental help. Our PTA have aready supported some of our school enrichment events such as our Diwali dance workshop, Chinese New Year, and some of our Pinewood Gymnastics sessions this year which is fantastic – we value these special days that really enhance our curriculum and this year we could not have funded these without the support of our PTA.
I was truly amazed with all the incredible entries we received for our King Charles III Coronation competition. Mr Elsey as CEO and Mr Matthews as Director of Education for Corvus Learning Trust were both invited to judge this competition and it was really difficult for them to choose as the quality and creativity was at a very high standard but after some discussion they agreed a winner and a runner up in each year group, with Easter eggs presented at breaktime on 28th March. All the children who entered this competition and were not named as the winners or runners up, were invited to receive a packet of Haribo or a small box of mini eggs. Our thanks goes not only to our judges but also to our local Tesco in Greenwood Road who supplied the Easter eggs, mini eggs and Haribo for all who entered – such great support from our local community.
Congratulations to the following children for outstanding creativity:
First Runner up
Year 3 Matilda W Sophia K
Year 4 Polly R Victor B & Edwin B (Year 6)
Year 5 Efren M Bethany L
Year 6 Maise H & Laila L Lily P
Wishing our whole school community, staff, governors, parents and children, a very happy Easter.
Mrs West, Headteacher
Dates for your diary
For the latest dates for your diary please click here.
The 13th March saw our school mark Science Week in true Oaklands style. The children had a fantastic day moving around the different classes and trying their hand at four different science activities that linked with this years theme ‘Connections’.
The Year 3 teachers led the children through the art of finger print analysis where curious minds asked if both hands were the same or if palm and footprints were just as unique.
In Year 4 the teachers challenged the children to create a bridge out of just 5 sheets of paper and 20cm of tape. The children were further challenged by the fact that the paper was only allowed to stick paper together and could not be used to secure it to the tables to make an anchor point. It was a pleasure to watch the different Year Groups use their knowledge of strong shapes and how forces act to tackle this task. The most successful bridge held £2.86 or 2p coins as well as an additional 800g – Well done Tate and Thomas in Year 6! Engineers to watch out for in the future no doubt.
In the Year 5 classrooms the children were asked to invent like a Victorian. They had to first think of a problem that needed solving and then had a go at designing and drawing their ideas. I particularly liked the noise cancelling device that one pair designed. It could have many useful applications!
The Year 6 teachers set a practical challenge where the children had to create the tallest tower using straws. Again the initiative and perseverance shown was astounding and we were very impressed with the outcomes. A great moment was witnessed too when one team’s tower collapsed at the last moment, meaning that they lost and a member of the winning team came over and shook their hand and congratulated them on their effort and was sorry for their bad luck. What an outstanding ethos that young man showed.
We ended the day with a celebration assembly where the teachers and our Science Governor Dick Shaw all picked one child to present a certificate and badge to. These were the children that shone brightly that day and showed aspects of our Oaklands Mindset that made us proud. In all honesty we could have given every child a certificate because they showed us why Oaklands is such a great school. They faced the challenges of the day with determination and ambition to succeed. They encouraged each other through collaboration and cooperation developing their communication skills. They showed respect and compassion through their friendships with each other and most importantly, in my opinion, they were motivated to succeed because of the sheer enjoyment they got from the day. Watch this space, for future world changers who go to Oaklands school!
The Big Sew
What an afternoon! It was great to see the whole school working on their Coronation pieces. A great opportunity for the children to showcase their sewing skills. Thank you to all the parents who came to help and we look forward to seeing you at the picnic.
News from Year 3
The children have enjoyed a very busy Spring term. In February, as part of our Stone Age topic, we imagined what it would have been like doing cave painting art by turning the desks on their side and then drawing on pieces of paper on the vertical ‘walls’. We have made a huge display of the children’s work in the Year 3 corridor. Please let your child’s teacher know if you would like to see it.
Recently, we had a great day learning key kitchen skills, such as slicing, grating and peeling to make a vegan tomato pasta sauce. Thank you to all the parent volunteers who made this possible. The children got to taste the pasta and there was lots of positive feedback. Cooking is a great opportunity to not only practise kitchen skills, but also a fantastic way of practising maths – we would definitely recommend you get your children to help you out more often in the kitchen!
Last week, we conducted some Geography fieldwork during our Crowthorne walk. The children enthusiastically noted down the different types of businesses along the High Street so that they had some facts to answer a learning question that we posed to them: ‘What businesses does Crowthorne need?’ This week, the children have been writing letters to the Parish Council highlighting their findings and asking what could be done to help attract new businesses to the area. Thank you again to the parent volunteers who made this trip possible. On the Friday of last week, we had a fun afternoon sewing in preparation for the King’s coronation. The children learnt how to sew fabric together to create Union Flag bunting which will be displayed when we have our Coronation event next term.
Thank you to all of the parents that attended Parents’ Evening. It was lovely to be able to share your child’s work with you and discuss their progress. Thank you for your continual support at home. We would ask that if possible, you continue to regularly practise telling the time with your child as many of them do find this very challenging.
On Wednesday, the children had a brilliant trip to Butser Ancient Farm where they got to experience life in prehistoric Britain. They took part in a site tour around the houses and an archaeological dig.
Finally, we would like to wish you all a very happy Easter and look forward to seeing you and the children for their final term in Year 3!
The Year 3 Team
News from Year 4
What a term!
Early in the term, we were fortunate enough to have the Newbury Agricultural Society in school for a breakfast workshop for each class. The children were adventurous with their food tasting and some developed a new liking for porridge and fruit smoothies. They also learnt how to milk a cow!
In Music the children did fantastically well in their “Stop” rap. We were impressed with the enthusiasm and creativity of the children.
In Science, they completed electricity investigations, looked at changes in habitats exploring our school grounds and then started to experiment with sound. They enjoyed an exciting series of investigations based on Connections in our Science Day.
In English, the children have studied the Iron Man, the Anglo-Saxon story of Beowulf and experimented with different forms of poetry.
In DT, they have been constructing Iron Man heads, complete with electronic eyes, and also sewing bunting in preparation for the Coronation. In Art, they have been developing their drawing skills and use of colour in creating a dragon’s eye which will be transformed into clay next term.
The highlight of the term was Ufton Court and it was really great to see the way the children embraced the challenges of our Year 4 residential trip despite the wintery weather. During the stay, they learnt so much about the Anglo-Saxons and Vikings from such an immersive experience. They rode in a Viking boat through the snow on their way to raid and trade and developed tactics when fighting with a sword, axe and shield. The children enjoyed identifying mysterious Viking objects whilst preparing to send a Viking shield maiden to Valhalla.
In Geography, children explored the historic Tudor mansion and grounds before using map skills on our epic walk around the local area; identifying physical features and comparing it with our local area.
The memorable Viking Feast took place in costume and without modern cutlery. The children prepared a dramatic retelling of the Sigourd and the Dragon story as our evening entertainment.
On the final day, the children re-enacted a series of battles between the Vikings and Anglo-Saxons, proving to be ferocious fighters. They also gained a keen understanding of events and tactics used by the competing sides, whilst having fun!
Have a relaxing break.
The Year 4 Team
News from Year 5
What a busy term we have had in Year 5!
Our Spring term started off with a fabulous trip to The Living Rainforest, where the children got a first-hand experience of the sights, sounds and climate of a rainforest. We got to observe a range of fascinating plants and animals and learnt how they have adapted to their environment. The Living Rainforest staff commented on how knowledgeable and enthusiastic the children were and we were very proud to see them representing Oaklands so well.
Back at school, we used our experiences from the trip to write descriptions of the Amazon Rainforest and the city of Manaus based on our class read, ‘Journey to the River Sea’. We learnt about the different layers of the rainforest which the animals inhabit and the tribes who call the rainforest their home. We then compared the climate of the rainforest to the UK by interpreting a range of line graphs. In Art, we learnt how to layer and collage, before creating our own rainforest collages inspired by the work of Henri Rousseau. The finished products will make a beautiful and colourful display along our Year 5 corridors. Finally, we ended the topic on a more sombre note, learning about the devastating impact that deforestation is having on our planet. During a P4C enquiry, we shared our opinions on whether cutting down trees is necessary and wrote letters to the Brazilian government.
On the 13th March, we enjoyed a fantastic Science Day, based on Connections, where the children designed their own Victorian inventions, built bridges and towers and investigated their fingerprints. It was brilliant to see the scientific thinking shown by all.
Earlier this term, we received a visit from Crowthorne Fire and Rescue Service, who spoke to the children about fire safety around the home and demonstrated the use of their equipment.
Wishing you a fantastic Easter break.
The Year 5 Team
News From Year 6
What a busy term we have had in Year 6!
A large part of this term has been centred around our cross-curricular History topic: The Battle of Britain. In class, we used a variety of sources to identify the reasons why Britain won the Battle of Britain. We had a brilliant trip to the RAF Museum in Hendon where we discovered the aircraft and stories of the Battle of Britain alongside extraordinary bombers, seaplanes, trainers and helicopters. The children also participated in a workshop where they learnt about the lives of various people in WW2. Once each group learnt about their character, they dressed up and presented their findings to the rest of the class. The trip was truly memorable and really brought the topic to life!
In English, we have been studying the life of Anne Frank and have written diaries from her perspective and of others in the annexe. We have been particularly impressed with how well the children have written in role as the different characters and portrayed their personalities through the use of brackets, rhetorical questions and emotions. Our final diary entries were particularly poignant as they were written following the D-day announcement and the families had a sense of hope and liberation for the first time in 2 years. A couple of months after, they were betrayed and captured.
Continuing with the WW2 topic, in dance we learnt the Lindy Hop and Charleston and choreographed routines that incorporated dance moves from that era. It was brilliant to see some great hand jives and hop-kicks included in the dances. Mrs West, Mr Elsey and Mr Matthews were lucky enough to view some of the final performances. In our Music lessons, we listened and appraised several songs from the era, including We’ll Meet Again by Vera Lynn. The children also enjoyed learning to sing ‘Hey Mr Miller’ in a round.
At the end of term, lots of the children enjoyed Bikeability sessions, where they learnt to ride a bike safely and carefully on the roads. We were so impressed with the distance that the children cycled and the skills they learnt- a fantastic experience to get them prepared for secondary school. The instructors were extremely complimentary of the children and commented that they were keen to learn and were exceptionally well-behaved. We were so proud of them and their achievements in this exhausting end to term.
We hope that you all have a well-deserved break over the Easter holidays. Thank you as always for your ongoing support.
The Year 6 Team
Coronation T-Shirt Reminder
The deadline for ordering your King Charles III Coronation T-Shirt is this Friday 31st March. For further details please click the link below to access our original letter about this exciting offering.
Just Play Sports Easter Football Holiday Club 11-14 April
Need options for the Easter holidays? Our new holiday club is now open for booking.
With lots of different games available, including football, multi skills, tennis and inflatable zorbs, children will be busier than the Easter bunny hiding his eggs and, who knows, they might even discover their new favourite sport along the way.
It’s run by Just Play Sports, our after school club provider who run our popular football and dodgeball and games clubs for the Infant School.
As it’s their first holiday club here, Just Play Sports have given an introductory discount for each session.
There are also discounts available if you book the whole week and if you book siblings.
And they take childcare vouchers if you have access to them.
Give the friendly team an email at email@example.com
Brain-Building Through Play
Spring is here, the evenings are lighter and we have two weeks off for the Easter holidays! Why not make time to play by trying a new activity from the many suggested here, grouped by age from babies to teens? Have fun!
“For babies and toddlers, simple, playful interactions with adults help develop sturdy brain architecture, the foundations of lifelong health, and the building blocks of resilience. Through games and playful activities, children can practise and strengthen important executive function skills that will help them throughout their lives, including learning to focus their attention, strengthening their working memory, and developing basic self-control.”
Center on the Developing Child, Harvard University
Eco-committee at Oaklands Junior School
Oaklands have registered for the Eco-Schools programme and we have formed a committee to start working on areas to help the school become more sustainable. We will be aiming to achieve an award but there is still lots to. If there is any way in which you can help, please contact Miss Green, the children would very much appreciate your support.
School Opening Times
We would like to remind you that classroom doors are open from 8:40 am and children should be supervised on site until this time. For safety reasons, under no circumstances should children arrive at school before 8:40 am.
We would like to remind all parents / carers that trainers are only permitted in school as part of your child’s PE Kit. Information on our school uniform can be viewed here.
Parking in Residential Areas near to School
Oaklands Junior School is very aware of the disruption that parking at the beginning and end of the school days causes to our neighbours and seeks to minimise this by asking our parents/carers
to park sensibly and safely at all times. Neighbours who suffer from repeated incidents of not being able to enter/exit their drives are advised to take the registration number of the car
concerned and report it to the police on 101.
It is vitally important that the zigzag area is left clear in the morning and afternoon during drop off and pick up times and that parents collecting their children in the afternoon leave their cars
in order to escort their children across the road. Furthermore, drivers are requested not to park opposite the zigzag lines, – this provides a safe crossing for our families and particularly for our older pupils crossing the road independently – or on grass verges, on the corners of road junctions.
Sports / Play Equipment Donations
Are you having a Spring clean? Have your children outgrown their skipping ropes? If you have any tennis or badminton racquets, skipping ropes or tennis balls that you no longer need, please donate them to Oaklands Junior School for our children to play with at lunchtime.
PTA Quiz Night
SAVE THE DATE – PTA Quiz Night – Friday 18th May. Details to follow.
Piano for Sale
We have had the offer of a piano from a lady called Mary Singh. Unfortunately, we do not have a need for one, however if any Oaklands Family does then please contact Mary on the following number 07770 673450 or via email on firstname.lastname@example.org
Don’t forget to check out the following area on our website which is updated on an ongoing basis with relevant information such as Easter activities and holiday camps, the Easter Bike Bonaza and Easter Bikeability courses plus the Lets Brighten the Street competition.
Headteacher: Mrs H West
Address: Oaklands Junior School, Butler Road, Crowthorne, Berkshire RG45 6QZ
Telephone: 01344 773496
Parent Support Advisor: Nikki Lenon
Telephone: 07748 415 285
Chair of Governors: Charlotte Kieran
Oaklands Junior School Governing Body
The Governing Body is ambitious for all children and infused with a passion for education and a commitment to continuous school improvement that enables outstanding outcomes. We oversee financial performance, challenge, support, and focus on the strategic direction of Oaklands Junior school.
If you want to raise a concern, please speak with your class teacher in the first instance. We welcome your feedback if you wish to contact the Governors, please email Charlotte Kieran, Chair of Governors.
Raising a concern
Governing Body team