This morning P4/5 were pleased to have a visitor. Marjory Sweeney works in East Lothian schools supporting and encouraging drama. She came in to run a workshop for the children on the life of John Muir. We explored different incidents in John’s life:
Climbing on the roof with his wee brother Davey.
Out for a walk with his grumpy, sleepy grandad, John is excited to find a nest of mice in a haystack.
Presenting his inventions at the Wisconsin State Fair
The inventions proved particularly motivating: we had a Knickerbocker Glory machine, a Cuckoo Clock, a chocolate manufacturing device and a musical box.
It helped the children to think about John Muir in new ways: we already knew he was a biologist, husband, father, son, geologist, farmer, inventor, writer and environmentalist – this morning we realised he might have been a bit of a pest to live with!
It was interesting to see the children experiencing the workshop after the topic, when they already knew the subject quite well. Last year’s class came into the workshop fresher, with less knowledge. This class knew the whole life story beforehand. This may have lessened the wow factor, but it meant that there were hardly any explanations needed, and we perhaps got through more activities.
Our next visitor is dancer Beth Noble, who comes into school on February 25th for a workshop exploring more of John Muir.
The pufferfish reading group in P4M have been hard at work today. First they listened very carefully to the story of the Gruffalo and then they listened again following the words in the book as the story was read. Ms Manson then asked them lots of questions about the story and they showed they had listened well because they were able to give fantastic answers.
The children then used finger puppets that they cut out to tell the story to each other, this was great fun!
They then had a discussion about the Gruffalo and the words that were used to describe him, they learned that these words are called adjectives.
The Gruffalo has purple prickles all over his back, orange eyes, knobbly knees, terrible teeth and a black tongue. The children then had to draw their own Gruffalo and use the adjectives in the book to make sure that they drew him properly.
Our Italian teacher Simonetta talked about carnivals and we made masks using card, glitter, straws and feathers. On the 9th of February were are having a carnival party with games, food and dancing. We are allowed to dress up if we want but we must wear our masks!!
What a week P2R have had! Our topic is The Senses and our classroom was full of strange smells and noises. We have a feely box which we check every day to see if we can guess what’s in it just by using our sense of touch. The water in the water tray kept changing colour and getting glittery and the sand went all weird and gloopy – we could even make shapes with it. It started out smelling of apples but now it’s kind of stinky. We went a bit mad on Wednesday – we escaped through our magic door and ran around outside exploring what we could see then wrote poems entitled ‘I See’ using some great describing words. We were learning about time too and one member of class took over from Mrs Connarty and did a grand job! We loved the visit from Daisy the cow at assembly and next week we will be investigating our sense of taste so all that talk of healthy breakfasts has made us quite hungry for more!
We had a very energetic day yesterday! We walked to and back from Meadowmill to take part in an athletics festival with three other schools; Stoneyhill, Campie and Stenton. Special thanks to Megan’s dad and Melissa’s mum for coming with us.
We were put into different teams with children from the other schools and some of us were a bit worried about this at first but it was great getting to know new people as well as having fantastic fun.
In our groups we did lots of different activities like the javelin, shuttle run, high stepping, speed bounce and standing triple jump. Here is a slideshow of us taking part.
Pupils from both P6 and P7 are being trained as peer mediators.
What does this mean?
The children are going to be trained in helping children, who are having problems in getting along, find a solution to their problem. This project is running very successfully in Ormiston and it sounded like a great idea to have it in Cockenzie too. There are many incidents that take place in the playground between children that could be resolved very quickly with a little guidance. The children will also be trained in recognising things that they can deal with and ones that need adult help. The P6 pupils will train on the 26th and 27th of January and the P7 pupils will have their training on the 10th and 11th of February.
Once they are trained children who are interested in being mediators will then be on duty on a rota system. The children who decide they would like to be mediators will then help decide where their station will be and how it will run. Staff will be around to help them should the need arise. Even although they might not wish to be a mediator, the children will learn skills in the training that will be useful on a day to day basis.
Common Ground Mediation are involved in delivering the training to the school and this is being funded by East Lothian Council. Carol and Morag have been in to do some training with staff and were at our assemblies on 8th January. We hope to share what we have learned with parents too. Look out for a date for that!
The afternoon of Tuesday 26th of January saw the culmination of all the preparations for our celebration of ‘The Bard’ Rabbie Burns.
The children from P6 M had worked very hard over the last two weeks sourcing everything they needed to feed and entertain around 160 people. They had begun their preparations before Christmas. The phones were red hot with calls to local supermarkets, butchers and suppliers asking for prices and or donations.
The project begins with a letter asking the children to organise a celebration and performance for their parents , celebrating the life of Robert Burns. They are also asked to ensure that it all comes in on budget and that the P6 pupils from the composite classes are involved in the performance aspect of the topic.
The children showed real enterprising spirit. Their ‘can do ‘ attitude ensured the success of the afternoon, they were determined to succeed and indeed they did.
It was a fantastic occasion, toasts were made with Scotland’s national drink (the one made from girders), songs were sung, poems recited, haggis piped in by Ailie Inverarity , courtesy of PLHS, dances were danced, Burns immortalised and those laddies and lassies, where would we be without them. Congratulations to all the P6s, organisers and performers alike.
The P6 pupils will tell you more and let you see some of their pictures soon. Keep watching.
Today P6 had their first day of Peer Mediation training. Tomorrow will see them complete their training as peer mediators. They all met in the assembly hall where Carol and Morag from Common Ground Mediation were waiting for them to begin the work. Linda Gaughin from John Muir House had come along to work with the children too, as well as Miss Drummond, Mr McLeay, Mrs Anderson, Miss Nisbet and Mrs Chalmers from school.
The children were put into random groups by having to get themselves into a long line in order of their birthdays, to do this they were not allowed to talk. They were then numbered 1 to 6 and then went into groups. The children then worked in these groups all day. They played games which all had a purpose in identifying skillls that would be needed as successful mediators. They ended the day with a preview of what they will learn tomorrow, 4 children played the parts of 2 mediators and 2 disputants.
The children did really well, it was a very demanding day where they had to think, work well together, listen, concentrate, contribute, make decisions and work as a team. It was exhausting. Well done P6 I am very proud of you all and look forward to working with you all tomorrow.
Our star of the week entertained us with stories of her travels to America in her ‘show and tell’. She wrote a special speech to read to us and we were very impressed. She told us how she had kicked the seat in front quite a lot on the flight over which we thought must have been pretty annoying for the person sitting there! In America she visited a sealife centre and that is where she got her very special pink dolphin. She also introduced us to her lovely bear. Well done to our star of the week – a spectacular presentation!
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