I have been asked to share the following information with you from the Dorchester Family Partnership Zone. It may be of interest.
Parenting Skills & Strategies One-to One Phone Consultations
As the school year comes to an end we thought we would take the opportunity to let you know about some of the activities available through the library service this summer.
On Tuesday 14 July we’ll be welcoming children’s author Ali Sparkes who will be hosting a Zoom session to talk about her experiences as a writer. Ali’s sessions are always hugely entertaining and we hope that this virtual opportunity will reach new audiences. This is a great opportunity for children to meet a real life artist and perhaps discover new reading choices. This is a FREE event and booking is on Eventbrite (link - https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/live-virtual-childrens-author-talk-with-ali-sparkes-tickets-112449942806?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch )
The Summer Reading Challenge continues online at www.sillysquad.org.uk and will run until September.
- Children register and set their own target for their challenge
- They read or listen to books, comics etc. that make them happy!
- Adding each completed book to their online profile will give a reward of online badges, games and videos
- When their challenge is complete children download their certificate
- Children can take part using our digital lending services, or what they have at home. When libraries reopen, they’ll be able to borrow library books.
- Children who are not library members can join online for instant access to our digital services; they will be sent a library card when libraries reopen.
We’re offering a range of activities to support the Challenge and keep children engaged with reading and the arts during the Summer holidays. Look out for details, which we’ll be posting on our website, Facebook page and Twitter
- We’ll be inviting children to submit a drawing for inclusion in a short animation as part of our drawing challenge – more information to follow.
- Storytelling with Mama G will take place on Tuesday 11 August. This Zoom event will be bookable on Eventbrite
- We’ll have regular activities on our Facebook page throughout the summer holidays including creative activities, Storytime, Lego challenges, author blogs and more.
- Arts Award Discover, administered by Trinity College London is available to all children aged 5+. This introductory qualification in the Arts is designed to get children and young people engaged with and excited about the arts in the broadest sense. The attachment ‘Discover at Home’ is a guide for parents, which takes them through each stage of the award. Taking part through Dorset Libraries if FREE, we ask that families contact us at DLSLibrarians@dorsetcc.gov.uk to register and we will be able to guide them through the process as required, moderate their work and order their certificates. All of the activities outlined above could be included in Arts Award Discover.
You can keep up to date with library news and activities by signing up for our newsletter
Thank you for the positive comments from our families regarding the reopening of the school for our preschool, Reception and Year one pupils. It is so wonderful to hear more children back in school and happy!
We have received an update from the local authority this morning, reassuring us all that the infection rate in Dorset remains very low and we are still not anticipating another peak of the virus - this is really encouraging and so great to hear!
There has been much in the news, of course, around catch up and tutoring and we all await further guidance on this, so more to follow I am sure.
This week schools have had good discussions around transition and arrangements for year groups not in school and I hope we will have further information to share with you next week.
The local authority is also speaking to schools about how support may be offered to families over the summer holiday. They are currently shaping a plan which I hope we will be able to share with you soon.
Our Year 4 pupils transitioning to St Mary's Middle School, Puddletown are beginning to receive letters from the school about starting in September - how very exciting. I understand the staff at St Mary's have been busy creating a series of short videos that will be shared with the Year 4 pupils to help with transition at this time. I look forward to seeing those!
Take care and stay safe,
I have received a video from Dorset Healthcare about returning to school for pupils. Please click on the link below to access part 1. I hope it is useful.
The MHST have also produced the first video for their ‘online book’ which will develop over the year. Here is the link for ‘chapter one: Back to Basics’
The Summer Reading Challenge 2020 – Silly Squad
Last year over 8000 Dorset children aged 4-12 years participated in the Summer Reading Challenge – run nationally by libraries and The Reading Agency. This reader development promotion is designed to encourage 4-12-year olds to read for pleasure and to help maintain literacy levels over the summer holiday period.
This year's Summer Reading Challenge is Silly Squad; a celebration of funny books, happiness and laughter. In light of the Covid 19 restrictions, the Challenge this year will be digital.
How Silly Squad will work (The promotion will run from June to September 2020)
· Children join the Challenge online at www.sillysquad.org.uk and set their own target for their challenge
· They read or listen to books, comics etc. that make them happy!
· Adding each completed book to their online profile will give a reward of online badges, games and videos
· When their challenge is complete children download their certificate
· Children can take part using our digital lending services, or what they have at home. When libraries reopen, they’ll be able to borrow library books.
· Children who are not library members can join online for instant access to our digital services; they will be sent a library card when libraries reopen.
Library activities to support the Challenge
· Children will have the opportunity to take part in Arts Award Discover as part of their Summer Reading Challenge and will receive a certificate from Trinity College London upon completion.
o More information on how to take part can be found on our website
You can download the Summer Reading Challenge Schools Pack, containing information about the Challenge, ideas for promoting it to your pupils and links to resources and activities.
- gather outdoors in groups of more than six people with people you do not live with
- visit friends or family inside their home or any other indoor place
- stay away from your own home overnight, except for in a limited set of circumstances, such as for work purposes
Whilst this letter is primarily for parents/carers with a preschool, reception or Y1 child I feel that it would be useful for our whole community to know what has happened since last Sunday’s announcement by the Prime Minister. We are currently working to implement the Government’s intention to begin reopening our school from 1st June 2020.
In doing so the key consideration will be the safety and well- being of the whole school community. We are therefore following all national and local advice and guidance from Public Health Dorset, the DfE, the Local Authority and GTAT.
The DfE guidance is available here;
Please click on the link below to access the letter sent to parents/carers.
On behalf of the Chief Fire Officer we would like to say a massive thank you on behalf of all the key workers, including firefighters, whose children may be coming into school so that their parents/carers can continue to work and provide essential and emergency cover during the national pandemic.
We also appreciate your hard work in providing resources to help parents/ carers support their children during these times.
Due to increased time spent at home, the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire & Rescue service would like to help parents/carers and children understand how they can stay safe and the importance of fire safety within the home.
They have created a series of free online resources for use with younger children (Foundation and Key Stage 1, although older children may enjoy some of the activities) which parents/ carers can access for free.
Each week will include the following:
- A story with a safety message; either a video or read by a firefighter, the author and in some cases a celebrity!
- Activities based around the story including literacy, maths and art and other activity sheets . This includes our Firefighter Paul “Glue and Make” videos with art and craft creations and “How to draw” videos. All focused on the fire service and fire safety.
- “Meet the firefighter” video, each week introducing one of our firefighters who will talk about the fire safety message of the week, a way to help stay safe with Covid 19, the importance of healthy eating and a fitness challenge.
Every week a new story and section will be added with topics such as fire safety, water safety and challenging gender stereotyping (My Mummy is a firefighter)
The current topics on the website are:
What do firefighters do: London Fire Brigade Play Mobil video introducing the work of firefighters.
Sam’s Sad Day : read by a firefighter, looking at the consequences of outdoor fires
No Dragon’s For Tea: read by the Canadian author Jean E Pendziwol
New Coronavirus helpline for parents and carers
A new helpline has been launched to support parents and carers who are worried about how their child is coping during the Coronavirus pandemic. Dorset Council’s Educational Psychology Service has set-up the helpline to support those who are worried about their child or teenager during the lockdown.
The helpline number is 01305 228300. It is open from Monday to Friday from 9am to 4.45pm. Callers need to ring and make an appointment for a 30-minute phone consultation. Please click on the link below for further information.
The spring sky glows blue.
The morning grass glitters with dew.
The seasoned sky changes its hue.
The winter months are my favourite ice blue.
Dull or bright I get much delight.
Morning or night oh, what an amazing sight.
Monday 20th April 2020
Oak National Academy is a new collection of high-quality lessons and online resources.
Backed by the Government, it has been created in response to the coronavirus lockdown.
The online classroom offers free access to great teachers, delivering video lessons, quizzes
and worksheets. Available for both primary and secondary levels, it covers a range of subjects.
All of the lessons are ordered so your child can learn along a clear plan.
They provide new lessons and resources each week.
Although we have our own plans already in place, we think this could work really
well alongside existing work.
Oak National Academy will fit alongside other resources such as BBC Bitesize to
offer a structure for the day for children until schools fully reopen.
Oak National Academy was built at speed; at present our resources are for
pupils who usually access their schools’ curriculum in mainstream education,
from reception through to year 10, without significant support or adaptation.
They are currently working on providing support for teachers working with
pupils with additional needs, and teachers based in specialist settings.