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Friday 7th October 2016

The roles that I have taken on this last year as parent governor and learning mentor have afforded me the unique opportunity to see my children’s school from a different point of view. I realise that this is not an achievable level of involvement for most parents, but I think every parent could benefit from seeing a bit of what those of us with this perspective see. So much hard work has been put into the school by staff in the past few years to clarify the day-to-day workings of the school. The classrooms feel strong and healthy and I have been thoroughly impressed with the step up that Nick has experienced moving into Middle Years this year, and the way Katy has settled into Early Years. The general consensus is that now that our core is strong, we need to shift focus to broadcasting to the world just how amazing we are. We need to build and grow in order to provide stability, but we cannot forget to strengthen and clarify our existing community too. Many of the families that came to this week’s Open Morning knew either a current or past family from LNS. We, as parents, are the most powerful marketing tool, but if we do not feel passionate and able to articulate what makes LNS great, then we cannot do this job well.

Co-creation is a fundamental value of the school, in the classroom, the curriculum and in the spirit of respectful communication that shapes the social environment where children can feel safe and valued. We also need to genuinely apply these principles to the community as a whole, so that parents and staff feel valued as contributing members to something greater than its parts. Of course, this is a school and as such it has a defined purpose that must be maintained, not constantly re-created. But this is not at odds with co-creation as a concept. Teachers and students co-create the curriculum, but there are defined elements which are not up for re-creation. As parents, there is space for us to get involved in the business of running the school, but this is somewhat limited. The real opportunity for co-creation is in our community, in the creation of a space that we would all like to be a part of. I would like to see a community that is open and honest, safe and forgiving; a place where we can all grow and contribute. One of the best things about LNS is that we can all get involved and make real change. It’s about making what happens in the classroom happen in the wider school community.

This week at the Open Morning while chatting with Linda I came out with “there is no them, only us.” It sounds like such a cliché, but I think it’s something that makes our community stand out. I believe that we would all like our children to take personal responsibility for what they want out of life, and I think that this is something that their education at LNS will teach them. As parents, I believe we should be modelling this for our children. As members of the LNS community, we all have different roles, but we are all equal and important. Lydia (Nick, Y3 and Katie, R)

Winter Fair: I know as a co-creation project that a school fair doesn’t instantly capture the interest of us all, but at LNS we have a chance to do things differently, and we should! Our fairs should be unique, just like we are. They should be a celebration of the collaboration and creativity that is at the centre of the school. Ben’s co-created marble run at the summer fair was a huge success. We need more of this. So what’s your passion, what can you bring? Create a play in day? Scrapheap challenge? Dazzle us with your creative thinking! If you’re interested in helping, in any way, great or small, come along Monday after drop off, put a post on the Google group, catch me in the playground or email ellison.lydia@gmail.com Lydia

Autumn Celebration: We are planning a day of Autumn Celebrations where parents can join in with workshops and come together to share some hearty soup and sing some songs. Please keep Thursday 20th October free if you can! More details to follow soon.

After school club? An LNS after school club is coming for those who need to collect children later than the usual pick up time! This is likely to be two days per week initially but could grow to more. Are you interested? Do you have suggestions or ideas? If so please contact Fliss on felicityjbull@outlook.com I would love to hear from you. Fliss (Henry, Y3 and Wilfie, N)

Sweets and chewing gum: We’ve seen a number of children in school recently with sweets and chewing gum. We try hard to encourage healthy eating choices in school so please don’t allow your child to bring these in. Linda

Later Years: This week we have been doing our class project (weaponry) and in our project we have designed our own mini models to do with weaponry. Other than our project, the Y6s have been doing their own independent projects of their choice. Sophia is doing hers on the Olympics, Kitty’s is on flexibility, gymnastics and contortionism, Summer is doing hers on painology (hypermobility in general), Kaziah’s is on the homeless, Cassia’s is on endangered animals, Daisy’s is on photography, Alissandra’s is on health, Max’s project is on music, Mayan’s is on Harry Potter, Jude’s is on cars of the future, Loui’s is on robots, Benjy’s project is on space exploration and Charlie’s is on Queen Victoria. They are all very good so far. In maths we are enjoying our ratio and proportion theme. Everyone is starting to get the hang of it. In Alison’s group we have been doing the same thing, but with YouTube clips to help us along. In communication we have been looking at character description to help us along with our independent writing which we have now officially started! Summer, on behalf of Anne-Marie, Alison and Louise

Middle Years: This week we started to investigate WW2 on the home front. We listened to the stories of some of the children of the war (now in there 90’s) and discovered that people had to do all sorts of things of survive. We found it interesting that many children actually enjoyed life during the war and that some even found it exciting. Most suffered terrible losses, but everyone seemed to speak warmly of the efforts made to pull through and pull together. People spoke of a great sense of ‘togetherness’ during the war. We were shocked by the rations of food and we are keen to recreate some wartime meals based on the rations allowed. If there are any parents willing to help with this please get in touch! We are also keen to find out more about the history of our school during WW2 and visit the local records office to see if we can find the Head Teacher’s records from 1939-1945.

Thinking about survival and life more broadly, we also thought about the human senses. Clare showed us a BBC recording of a deaf woman (Joanne Milne) who at the age of 39, heard for the first time in her life following a cochlear implant. It was very moving to hear her speak of the experience. Simple sounds amazed her, she said that even ‘the light switch going on and off, sounded so beautiful’. It made us think how lucky we are. Wishing you all a great weekend, Clare, Lauren & Ondine

Reception & Early Years: Following on from our discussions about mummification this week we set up an experiment to find the best way to preserve organic matter. We separated into 2 groups to think about what materials would be best for preserving a banana skin and why. Out thoughts included salt: “cos it will take all the juice out of it”; lemon juice: “that’s what my mum puts our apples in to stop them from going brown”; cold hands: “just because”! Wrap it in foil, put it in mud, put it in water and then put it in the freezer, were other suggestions and we left 1 piece of banana skin untouched to see what happens. We are going to observe the banana skins over the next few weeks and record any changes that occur. After 1 day there was very little change to most of the banana skins apart from the piece in the salt, the yellow skin had turned brown!

Alongside this we had our first singing session with Sophia. We learnt a song called ‘Amazing Egyptians’ Sophia was amazed at how quickly we learnt the lyrics. It is a really cool song that we have continued to sing throughout the week. Previously we had discussed the many ways you can tell a story: writing, dance, music, drama, art work. The lyrics of the song became our inspiration for creating a large scale, birds eye view landscape of the Nile.  Some of us were inspired to write fictional stories that we have read to their rest of the group, other have built tombs, some of us have  explored how much force would have been needed to push or pull heavy blocks of sand. Amanda, Rachel & Willow

Nursery: Last week a few children wanted to add wires inside our robot, which led to looking at wire connections within circuits. So this week it was brought to life by using real components to make a circuit board including a switch to turn on and off a light bulb. During circle time we held each other’s hand to represent the connections needed to make a circuit work. Throughout the week we are adding more items to the recycled robot (the broken urn from the Quiet Room!) including a plastic tube. Initially this became the esophagus and ‘food’ was passed through it, then it changed into a windpipe and voice box to give the robot a voice, we felt our own throats to feel the vibrations when we make sounds. Charlie has suggested he is keen to make moving parts and after he found a bat skeleton, we might need to create a moving skeleton too! The ‘kitbashing’ idea is still in the pipeline, so if anyone has any broken toys they are willing to contribute, we would be very grateful. Have a great weekend, Julie

AFTER SCHOOL CLUBS

Monday Netball Anna annacole.uk@gmail.com or Lucie lucie.ash@somnowell.com
Tues & Weds Art Club David Bradford 07855 038773 or davidbradford0@gmail.com
Wednesdays Sports Club Sign up in office or text Barney Kaufmann on 07837 632070

DIARY DATES

Mon 10th Oct 9.15-10.30am Winter Fair meeting in the Quiet Room
Mon 10th Oct 3.30pm-4.45pm Netball league at Priory
Tues 11th Oct 8.40am Y3-6 Swimming at Lewes Leisure Centre
Mon 17th Oct 3.30pm-4.45pm Netball league at Priory
Tuesday 18th Oct 8.40am Y3-6 Swimming at Lewes Leisure Centre – LAST ONE
Weds 19th Oct 9.30am-12.30pm Visitors from Mexico!
Thurs 20th Oct Approx. 10am-3.15pm TBC Autumn Celebrations
Friday 21st Oct 3.15pm Break up for half term
Tues 1st Nov 8.55am Back to school

JACK’S MENU FOR WEEK BEGINNING 10th OCTOBER

Monday Noodles and honey soy stir fry Oranges and seeds
Wednesday Roasted veg perfect pasta bake Fruit
Friday Chilli and baked potatoes Fruit crumble