P4/5 page 2009-10

Wednesday 23rd June

This weekend sees the arrival of our friends from France, our partners from the Schoolovision project, who will be staying at Innerwick Outdoor Education Centre from Saturday 26th until Wednesday 30th June.

On Saturday, they will be welcomed here at the school, with an informal lunch, and then on Sunday, they plan to spend the day visiting Tantallon Castle and the Seabird Centre in North Berwick.
On Monday, P4/5 and the French group will spend the day together at Dalkeith Country Park (dry and warm weather welcome please!) and then on Tuesday, they will be involved in various activities here at school.

We have already met our friends through a series of FlashMeeting webcam conferences, so it will be very exciting to welcome them all to Gifford.

Tuesday 8th June


Yesterday, in our Whole Class Reading lesson, we looked at an extract from the story, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
As part of the lesson, we split into groups and read the text in role, which was great fun. We then decided to make mp3 sound recordings of our groups’ work.
Above, you can listen to each of the groups— can you identify who the pupils are?

Friday 14th May

Time to bring you all up-to-date with our events from the past couple of weeks or so.

On 28th April we had a wonderful webcam conference with 20 countries, where the children from all 30 countries involved in the Snapshot of Europe project cast their votes to see which photographs would win the overall contest. You can see the recorded Flashmeeting webcam conference here.

The Yester pupils were very pleased, as their own favourite pictures won in three of the four categories. The winners were :
Places- Iceland- a wonderful shot of the volcano in Iceland.

People- Turkey- a lovely photo of a girl looking to the Meditteranean sea.

Nature- Sweden- a fantastic shot of a blade of grass.

Sport- Sweden- another brilliant shot, this time of a skateboarder.

Well done to all the near 800 children who took part in this innovative project, and who uploaded literally thousands of photos to the project’s eTwinning site, which you can still access below. The four winners have now been sent specially engraved trophies, marking their great work!

We have also filmed our Schoolovision song for this year’s contest- thanks go to Gavin Tully-Jackson for his help in editing the finished film, and thanks too to Mrs Riddell, who helped make the children up for the occasion! You can watch the song, Until the End, here. ( I had hoped to embed the song here directly, but it appears this is almost impossible to do. Click to link to it though.)

Over the next two weeks, we will be preparing for our sponsored silence, which is due to take place on Friday 28th May, to raise funds, as part of our enterprise work for the year.

Sunday 28th March
Looking ahead to next term…

This week sees the Easter holidays start, so I am taking the opportunity to share some of the things we’ll be working on next term:

Firstly, when we return, our new project will be to create our own company and to discuss how we can raise some money. This is part of our Enterprise work, and is something that all classes are encouraged to do each year. We have already been involved in some really enterprising activities this term, but the summer term will give us the change to actually bring in a financial aspect to the work.
We will also be involved in the conclusion of our Snapshot of Europe project, when we’ll meet lots of countries from all over Europe via webcam conference (set for Wednesday 28th April) to establish the winners in each of the four categories. If you have photos to send in that have been taken by the children, remember they can be emailed to me directly at yestersnapshot@yahoo.co.uk

Early in the new term, we will also be recording our Schoolovision entry. It needs to be on the Schoolovision blog by 14th May, so that the other 32 countries in the project can all evaluate the songs, prior to our second huge webcam conference, set for Friday 21st May!

In addition to all of this, we will continue to work on various aspects of writing each week on a Wednesday, revise and look at new aspects of grammar and punctuation each week, and continue to work through our various aspects of maths on a daily basis.

On 29th April, the P5s will have a visit from Kate Green, the East Lothian golf co-ordinator, who will run through what the children have learned in previous lessons and give the children an opportunity to “put it all together” in a game situation.

I’ll give other dates for upcoming events as and when possible, after the Easter holidays.

Thursday 11th March

We have had a very unusual but exciting week, as we’ve hosted French film-maker Pascal Fancea, along with his sound engineer, Etienne, since Monday. They have been here to make a film, co-funded by the British Council here in the UK, and the French version of the same organisation in France. This film, once finished, will be used by eTwinning, in 32 countries across Europe, to help promote to schools and individual teachers the benefits of making international links with European schools.

Over the last few days, we have been filmed participating in a small project with a school from Le Versoud, near Grenoble, in France, and other school from Vermuksi in Latvia. Each school provided a song in their own language for the other two countries to learn, as well as one part of a three counrse meal, for the others to prepare.

On Tuesday, we all came together for a video conference, using the FlashMeeting tool, to meet each of the other two schools and to sing our songs to each other, and to eat the three course meal that we had prepared. This video conference was filmed simultaneously in all three countries.
Pascal and Etienne left earlier today, and have now returned to France, where they will edit the film and create the finished article by June. We are sure that it will reflect extremely positively on our class!

Thursday 25th February- update

Some important things are coming up for P4/5 over the next couple of weeks.

Following on from all the success that Yester Primary has enjoyed as a result of creating the Schoolovision contest, we have been asked by a film-maker from Grenoble in France to participate in a small-scale eTwinning project along with a primary school from France and another primary school from Latvia.

All three schools have to do the following:
1) Introduce their regions to each other- we searched on Google during an ICT lesson a few weeks ago for attractive photos from East Lothian, which were then uploaded to the eTwinning website for thepupils in the other two countries to view.
2) Each country has agreed to learn a song from the other two countries, so we are currently busy learning the French song, “Alouette,” and the Latvian song, “Labvakaru, saimeniece.” We have asked the other two countries to learn the Scots song “Three Craws”.
3) All three countries will produce one part of a three course meal. We have suggested the others prepare Cock-a-Leekie soup, and we will prepare Gratin Dauphinoise and a Latvian berry dessert based on blueberries.

Click on the link to see us singing a bit of our Latvian song!
P4/5 perform Labvakaru Saimeniece!

The French film-maker, Pascal Fancea, a good friend of Mr Purves, will spend 4 days in the Latvian classroom, filming and interviewing the teacher and children there between 1st and 4th March. Then, the following week, he will spend a few days in P4/5 with us. During this time, we will host a video-conference between the three schools, where everyone will sing their songs to each other and will taste the meals they have prepared. Pascal has already spent time in the French classroom, and after he has been in Scotland, he’ll edit the film and produce a final version, that, along with the footage from the classrooms, will also include interviews from eTwinning headquarters in Brussels, and from the British Council, who are responsible for administering eTwinning in the UK.

This is a very exciting time for P4/5 and Yester, as the film will then be used to further promote eTwinning throughout Europe.


Tuesday 9th February- update

Cross country training started in earnest yesterday- and so, if your child wishes to join in the training sessions, they’ll need to have outdoor PE kit each Monday and Wednesday for the lunchtime sessions. If the weather is very bad, we may run on Tuesdays and/or Thursdays as well, so best to be prepared!


Today in school our class hosted the annual Burns Supper. We have this every year, to remember Robert Burns, Scotland’s most famous poet, who lived from 1759, to 1796.
In the video, you can see:
1) The most important guest, the haggis, being brought into the hall.
2) Burns’ poem “The Address to a Haggis”
3) Three of the class telling a bit about Burns’ life.
4) Burns poem “To a louse”.

Edited highlights of Yester’s 2010 Burns Supper, held Tuesday 2nd February.

If you’d like to find out a bit more about Robert Burns, please have a look at this website.

Below, there are details of our big, collaborative project, A Snapshot of Europe. This is a photography based project, encouraging the children in primary classes across 34 European countries to take photos in a variety of categories.
We are looking for the children in P4/5 to send their pictures to Mr Purves, via the email address that was sent out in a recent letter.
If you wish to see the pictures that have been already uploaded by other countries, you can view them by logging into the eTwinning site :
and enter the username as …. snapshots
and the password…… RTCc3B
Once logged in, click on “Project Activities” at the top, next to “Home” and then scroll down to see the various countries’ folders.

This will allow you to see what the other children in the other countries have produced.

You Tube video of rock climbing at Tranent Indoor Climbing Wall, Monday 18th January 2010

Click on the link above to see an edited version of our day at Tranent Indoor Climbing Wall from the 18th January.

We have a very busy term planned, and next week, it’ll be P4/5 leading the school’s Burns Supper on Tuesday 2nd February. We have been auditioning for parts and are now working hard to rehearse our speeches and poems.

We have also started our term’s main project, which is Outer Space. The class are extremely enthusiastic about this project, and have already worked very hard in class to find lots of information via the excellent collection of books we have and also from the internet.

After we have hosted our Burns Supper, I will be starting Cross Country training for all interested pupils from P4- P7. As in previous years, this will take place twice a week, weather permitting, at lunch times. We’ll be aiming to get ourselves ready for the first event we plan to take part in, which will be the Compass Invitational Cross Country race, at Pathhead, in early March. This always serves as a great warm-up for the end of term East Lothian Cross Country event, at Hallhill, in Dunbar. This year of course, we are the defending champions, so we will definitely be aiming to retain the trophy!

We have also now started with a Europe wide project, involving primary school children from 34 different countries, called “A Snapshot of Europe”. This project involves the use of digital photography, with the children in each country being encouraged to use their own digital cameras, or mobile phones if they wish, to take photographs in four different categories:
1) Nature
2) People
3) Places
4) Sport

Each country will collate their pictures, and in April, they’ll vote in their own class for their favourite picture in each category, which will then be put forward as their “finalist” four pictures, to the project blog which you can see here. Once all 34 countries’ pictures appear, we will all choose our overall favourites, and vote via a huge webcam conference for the winning picture in each category, due to be held on Friday 28th April. The overall winners in each category will be awarded a special trophy.

Later in the term, we’ll also be getting started on our new Schoolovision project. This award winning project was a huge success last year, with 30 countries across Europe participating. All countries created their own song, recorded it, and uploaded it to the project blog. Once the pupils in all 30 classes across Europe had watched all the videos, we came together on 15th May to vote using live webcam conferencing for our favourite song, just like in the real Eurovision Song Contest. Last year’s winner were the Czech Republic with this wonderful song!

This time round, we will have even more countries involved, as there are some new countries wishing to join in. Most of last year’s schools have signed up for a second year of this great fun event.

We received this lovely letter from the Cabinet Secretary for Lifelong Learning at the Scottish Government with regards to our Schoolovision successes. Click for a full size version if you need to.

Some dates for your diaries

Monday 18th January– P5 rock climbing
Tuesday 2nd February– Burns Supper
Wednesday 24th February– P5 rock climbing
Wednesday 24th February– P4 rugby
Friday 26th February– P5 basketball taster
Wednesday 3rd March– P4 rugby
Friday 5th/ 12th March– Judo taster sessions
Wednesday 17th March– P4 rugby
Tuesday 23rd March– P4 rugby festival

Hello! We have been busy in art recently. On the left here, you can see an example of one of our Lily of the Valley flowers, that we created by using pastel crayons. You may not be aware, but Lily of the Valley is one of the national nature symbols of Finland. We drew them after having an interactive whiteboard “discussion and test” activity, where we searched for appropriate pictures of the flowers, and then tried out the instructions that we found from a good website of how to draw them. We are very pleased with the results, and the whole class’ finished work is on display in the classroom and also on the achievement board!

We recently spent a day in the Allsorts room working with Dave Trouton on our music skills. It was a most inspiring day, with all of the class learning lots of new things. At the end of the afternoon, we performed to the P3/4 class, by telling a story, with the use of musical instruments!

A window on the world of Yester Primary School