Aiming to ELP on Friday with Red Nose Day Bake Sale…

On Friday 15th March, the ELP pupils will be selling Red Nose baking to raise money for Comic Relief. We will be coming round classes during Period 2 and hoping to sell lots of goodies in aid of the charity. Having a Bake Sale is one of the 7 activities you can do to raise money. Why not check out the Comic Relief website for more information about how to do something funny for money?

We hope you will ELP our efforts by buying something from us on Friday – please bring lots of change to school!

In the meantime, here’s One Direction to help explain a little more!

ELP Burns Blog report by Ben and David…

The ELPs have been finding out about Robert Burns.

Robert Burns was born in 1759 on January 25th. He is Scotland’s most famous poet. He wrote famous poems such as “To a mouse” and “My love is like a red red rose”. His most famous song is “Auld Lang Syne” which is sung at New Year.

Here is a link to a short film about Burns. It only takes 3 minutes to watch so why not spend a little time learning something new about our most famous poet?

Ben and David

Beaming smiles as we go back in time…

A group of Preston Lodge youngsters visited Beamish living museum yesterday and had a fantastic time learning all about the past through this wonderful interactive attraction. We enjoyed spending time in a Victorian classroom where Seemis was not a problem as attendance was logged in chalk on a board on the wall and children sat 90 to a classroom like sardines in a tin…scared to speak and ruled with a rod of iron. Some of our youngsters found out, to their peril, how a Victorian teacher would address young men who were not in class when they ought to be!

Next stop was a tram ride and a chance to find out how Edinburgh might be if it finally gets back to the future ūüėČ

We moved on to the miner’s village and had a nose around the houses belonging to the members of the community. We got¬†a fascinating insight into the ablutions, diet and sleeping arrangements in a typical mining cottage of the time…

Here we have a member of the mining community showing us how they would make their daily bread supplies. After lunch we moved on to look at the main town centre where we visited the vaults in the bank, the habedasherers, the lodge, a sweetie factory and the Cooperative! In this photograph some of our pupils are being shown bank notes and coins dating back to 1912…before descending down into the bank vaults.

We finished our trip late in the afternoon with a visit to the farm where we were able to spend some time looking at the animals and sit having an orange juice in the sun!

The “If I had a dream” speech…

As part of our 1960s studies we have been investigating the US Civil Rights Movement led by Dr Martin Luther King Jnr. We listened to his world famous “I have¬† dream” speech and watched video footage of this momentous occasion in Washington in August, 1963. Many of the words in the speech were quite difficult to understand however we were in no doubt as to the ideas behind them.

As a class we decided to “translate” the speech into one that would be more easily understood in current times and by most people. Line by line we went through it and discussed what we thought the original words stood for. We were given the challenge of putting things into our own words. At the bottom of this post you will find our own version –¬†“If I had a dream…”

“If I had a dream…”

I have a dream that one day this nation will respect everyone no matter their colour.

I have a dream that one day people might forgive.

I have a dream that one day everyone will have fairness and freedom.

I have a dream that people will be judged on what they do and not how they look.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day black and white kids will play together.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day everything will be fair.

This is our hope…

With this faith we will be able to live side by side one day.

This will be the day when we are all free and equal.


From 14th century Scottish foot soldiers to Jorvik vikings in 24 hours!

This week has seen some of our ELP pupils make some time travelling moves that Dr Who would be proud of! On Monday all of our ELP pupils went back in time to become foot soldiers or knights in Robert the Bruce’s army at the Battle of Bannockburn (see Sir Dale of Prestonpans above as evidence). On Tuesday our Senior ELPs (S3 students) then went even further back in time courtesy of British Rail (no jokes please) to become Viking warriors in the settlement of Jorvik – York to you or I.

Everyone had a fantastic time on Monday. The weather was perfect, the journey a pleasant drive through the countryside courtesy of George and the visit to the centre itself a joy to be involved in. All of the pupils participating were fully engaged with first the re-enactment video and then the interactive session with our special guide, Mark. We were able to don chain mail and extraordinary armour and helmets. Some tried out maces and swords and axes (all blunt!) whilst others got to grips with Welsh bows or crossbows.

Even the supporting members of staff got in on the act!

¬† Is this one of Bruce’s men – or is it an extra from the Sound of Music? We can’t be certain! Sister Janis or Sir Cullen of the Pans? You decide…

On Tuesday, our Senior pupils made a very early start on their journey to England. A dawn meeting at Prestonpans train station was followed by a train journey south past lighthouses, Lindisfarne from our RME lessons, the Angel of the North, St James Park and many other interesting sights.

  Steven is tired after an early start but enjoys his train trip.

On arrival in York the group headed for the National Railway Museum to have a look at all of the interesting trains. We got on board the Japanese Bullet train only to find that our heads were hitting the top of the doorways on the way in and out. We had a nose at the Royal Train and wondered at the fancy crest on the front of the engine. We found a train with a mailbox on the side and a grand engine called the Duchess of Hamilton – one that made Dr Voge jealous of us when we came back!


The Royal Train and two engines that look like they belong with Thomas the Tank Engine!

After a hearty lunch we headed to the Jorvik Centre – our main destination for the day. The whole idea behind this trip was to consolidate and elaborate the Social Subjects curriculum undertaken this session on the Vikings. We went back in time on a scratch and sniff tour of the settlement of Jorvik. We found fishermen and leather workers, woodsmen and amber craftsmen. We came across rotting carcasses in the streets, scuttling rats in our path and groups of dogs running wild. We watched people barter and tend evening fires, saw inside and outside thatched buildings and evening came across a rather constipated Viking on the loo – that’s when the scratch and sniff went into overdrive. But the boys will undoubtedly remember it for some time to come…

¬†After the Jorvik Centre we then set off round the rest of the city…

Next stop was the beautiful and impressive minster. Unfortunately, it was closed to the public but we were able to wander round the gardens and some of the courtyards associated with the cathedral.


We also had an interesting walk along part of the old city walls and discovered a range of fascinating things as we went.


Finally we headed towards the famous Shambles…

     The famous Shambles

We headed back to Prestonpans happy but tired after a long day. However, we are delighted we were given this opportunity to take the students so far afield to experience this fantastic day out. We not only consolidated and elaborated on our curricular work this session but we also had a lovely time sharing experiences outside the classroom. A big thank you to all who made this possible.

Now we’re off for a lie down in a darkened room… ūüėČ

Jorvik Centre Trip Update…

It is now only 3 weeks until Mrs Todd and Mrs Binnie take the Senior ELP curricular trip to the Jorvik Centre in York. All senior ELPs have been invited to take the unique opportunity to enter into the mysterious world of the Vikings at this world famous attraction in the city’s Coppergate.

We have managed to keep costs as low as possible by booking train tickets in advance and using rail cards but we are now in the final week for any outstanding payments to be made and we would be grateful if all outstanding monies could be forwarded to Mrs B by the end of the week (14th May). If there are any concerns or difficulties please shout…

Our trip to the Jorvik Centre comes as part of our curricular studies for this session. We have studied the Vikings in great detail in our Social Subjects lesson and we already know a fair bit about their lives, traditions and history. However, we understand that this “scratch and sniff” experience at the Jorvik will help bring much of what we have learned to life…lets hope we don’t get chased out of town by hairy, growling creatures with horns on their heads!

Full itinerary details will be forwarded to the pupils involved in this trip in the coming week. Please can parents note that this is a trip for Senior ELPs only – an alternative exciting curricular related ¬†activity is being run for our Junior ELPs on the same day…more news about that later!

Heavy hearts…

Our study of Ancient Egypt is drawing to a close – we are just putting the finishing touches to the Learning Zone display where some of the excellent work of ELP pupils can be seen:

Queen Nefertiti- designed by David and Amy

A Parade of Egyptian Gods by Melissa

A Golden Staff -inspired and made by Pharaoh David

The Weighing of the Heart ceremony by James and Dale

Beautiful Scarabs made with Mrs Hoban.

Thanks to all our pupils who have put so much effort into this topic and made it so enjoyable to teach.

Our next history unit shall be revealed shortly….


Things have been getting a bit gruesome and gory in the Learning Zone lately.

Dale volunteered to become a Mummy for the lesson, though we stopped short at pulling his brain out through his nose with a hook!

Our next few lessons will focus on the pyramids-were they really built by aliens?!!!

Exploring Egypt

The new term in the Learning Zone¬†has¬†kicked off with a distinctly¬†Middle Eastern flavour. This term¬†we will be exploring inside ancient tombs,¬†examining evidence and prodding artefacts from¬†Ancient Egypt.¬†Already we have discovered where Egypt is, and why the River Nile was so important to this amazing civilization. Today, we will be taking an interactive visit inside King Tut’s Tomb and Mrs Hoban will be making Scarab Beetles¬†in art.Anubis

Do you think he saurus?

In the coming weeks in ELP Social Studies and ELP Science we will be looking at the life of dinosaurs. This project will dovetail with the work going on for One Scotland that involves reading¬† Arthur Conan Doyle’s much loved book, The Lost World.

In Social Studies our angle will be an historical one – when did the dinosaurs live, how did they live and why did they disappear? We will consider different species of dinosaur and spend our time being detectives finding out as much as we can about them from the internet, books, models, fossils, experts and our own prior knowledge (of which there is an awful lot!).

In Science we will concentrate on the idea of survival and adaption. We will look at dinosaurs and compare them with other creatures who may still be around today. The crocodile will feature heavily in our investigations, as will various fossils and other information about how different species have become “extinct”.

We will take the opportunity to explore the ideas put forward by Charles Darwin in the year that sees a celebration of the 150th anniversary of his Origin of the Species. (Perhaps as much an excuse to look at pictures and information about the many wonderful species that inhabit the Galapagos Islands! See below)