What a difference a week makes! On Friday last week the school and classrooms still looked rather like a building site but today all the classrooms are fully functioning learning spaces. Thanks must go to all the staff for all their hard work and organisational skills - it was a marathon effort!
The children, and staff, are loving the new classrooms, the Art and Tech spaces and the library, which will be open for business soon. But the biggest difference is having the noise and bustle back! Gateway children are a joyful lot and I have loved seeing them all at work, lunch and play this week. All our new starters have thrown themselves into life here and although starting a new school is always rather confusing and often daunting, they have been helped along by many caring adults and class mates and all seem to have had a positive first week. They may be surprised that they have to come back next week too!
Last Friday, in amongst the chaos, the teaching team all benefitted from an inspirational training day. Our trainer, Mike Hughes, came up with many excellent, yet quite simple ideas to ensure our pupils are really engaged and challenged at school. His premise is simple, but oh so true
- Learning is the consequence of thinking, therefore we must get them thinking.
- Language is central to thinking, therefore we must get them to talk.
- Learning is an active process so we must get them doing.
These basic principles have generated a lot of talk between the staff and many great ideas and tweaks to lessons have already been trialled, with many more to come! Exciting times!
I hope you have all enjoyed the first week back and I am sure you will be collecting some rather shattered, but happy children this afternoon. Have a great weekend and I look forward to welcoming everyone back on Monday!
Sue La Farge