If there’s one thing that the last few months has taught me, it is how quickly children adapt to change and are willing to accept new situations. Last week, Mrs Woods was recalling to me how some of the children in Year 1 had been discussing how they’d celebrated Bonfire Night in a different way this year - even though some of them had not gone to their usual impressive fireworks displays, they had still watched fireworks from afar, and were just as excited as they have always been. Having spoken to a number of children this week, despite the restrictions we have in place, the consensus is that they are really happy in their learning, they love being part of the school community, and that despite the changes, they’re still really enjoying the experiences we continue to give them. In some areas of the curriculum, we may be doing things in a slightly different way, but the children continue to thrive on the opportunities on offer, and many are developing a natural resilience as a result. Resilient children are curious, brave, and trusting of their instincts. They know their limits and they push themselves to step outside of their comfort zones, as some of the children demonstrated at our first Music Tea of the year earlier this week.
The Performing Arts continue to play a significant role in helping children develop their creativity at Gateway, and on Tuesday evening, nine brave musicians from Years 5 and 6 performed solo pieces on violin, piano and guitar. For a few, this was their very first experience of playing in front of an audience, and they really were stepping out of their comfort zones - it was both exciting and terrifying at the same time! However, the informal setting and appreciative audience of fellow performers did much to conquer the nerves and I look forward to hearing these children play in the future, as they continue on their musical journey. Bravo to all who took part. Continuing with the musical theme, as I walked around the school yesterday afternoon, I could hear snippets of Christmas songs coming from the music and drama room. All of the children have started to prepare for their Christmas presentations and concerts which are always a magical highlight of the school year, and the children are as excited as they have always been! Performances such as these provide a wonderful opportunity for all children to ‘have a go’ regardless of their ability. For some, new skills are being learnt; for others it’s a perfect time for them to showcase their talents. Performance is such a great way for pupils to gain a stronger and more lasting sense of both self-confidence and self-esteem and I can’t wait to see and share with you the video performances at the end of term.
Within our school calendar we have key events which take place annually, for example Remembrance Day and Children in Need, both of which have taken place this week. We usually mark Remembrance Day by holding a whole school assembly, and this year was no exception, although again, it was a little bit different. Children from Verse Speaking Club recited two poems about World War I, which were videoed and shared with each class at the same time, and we all observed a minute’s silence, following the Last Post, played by Mr Wallace. Today we raised awareness for Children in Need by wearing spotty or Pudsey themed accessories, and there was absolute euphoria as all the children had enormous fun joining in with the last 20 minutes of the Joe Wicks 24 hour PE challenge, organised by Mr Butler.
Creating a happy school is about developing an environment that looks after the whole child and helps them build strategies to feel happier about all aspects of their lives. Gateway is certainly a happy school and the children continue to flourish and enjoy their experiences as they always have.
Have a great weekend!
Music Tea video