Newsletter – 24 January 2020

This Term’s Virtues

This term we are trying hard to be Loving and Compassionate.

From Our Headteacher

Dear Parents & Carers,

Signs of Spring are everywhere. I notice that slight shift in the light as I cycle in to work through the partially flooded meadows of Marston! I sense a collective longing for the long days of Summer – we are just going to have to wait a little bit longer! The children are continuing to working hard. At this point in the year we see a real acceleration in their learning which gives us great satisfaction.

Have a lovely weekend and enjoy the Class News (which includes this term’s Topic Overviews and Knowledge Organisers).

Kind Regards, Tom Walker

St. Aloysius Breakfast & After School Club

Breakfast Club – there is no need to book, just turn up! From 7.45am the cost is £4.00 and from 8.00am the cost is £3.50.

After School Club – please remember to book your After School Club sessions online via the Schoolgateway app. No bookings after 2.30pm. Dates are available for the whole of this academic year.

If you would like any further information about either Breakfast or After School Club, please speak to Jo or Chris in the school office.


Huge thanks to all the parents who helped raise $457 which has been sent off to the Australian Red Cross.  As ever, the cake sale was a hit with parents and children alike.  WELL DONE! Thanks also to Vanessa Geremias for the idea and organisation of the sale.

This Term’s House Point Totals





Sheldonian were the Autumn Term House Point winners!

Dates For Your Diary – 2020

February 2020

Week of 3rd February – Find Your Brave – Children’s Mental Health Week
Wednesday 5th February – NCMP Measuring Programme – Reception & Year 6
Friday 14th February – 3.05pm End of Spring Term Pt 1
Monday 24th February – 8.35am, Start of Spring Term Pt 2
Wednesday 26th February – 10.00am, Ash Wednesday Mass at The Oratory

Paying For School Meals

School meals must be pre-booked and paid for in advance preferably by term. The cost of a school meal is £2.40 per day, so next term will be £69.60 (29 days @ £2.40). Please make cheques payable to “Oxfordshire County Council”. Money should be placed in an envelope clearly marked with your child’s name and class and then posted in the blue box outside the office. If you had an outstanding balance (or credit) from last term it will be carried forward. You can also check your child’s balance and make payments via the Schoolgateway app.

From January, if you want your child to have a school meal and you do not have any credit in your account, you will receive a telephone call from the office asking you to provide a packed lunch for your child.

If you have any queries regarding school dinner money or require a statement, please speak to Mrs. McIntyre in the School Office.

The current School Dinners Menu is available via the school website.


Acorn Nursery Class

Acorns have had a super start to the new term and their beautiful carpet sitting has been rewarded with marbles in the jar already! We have welcomed several new children into Acorns and it has been lovely to see how well they have settled and I know that is due in part to how Acorns keep to their promises to be kind, be safe and look after the things in our classroom (including each other!).

Our current topic is Winter and the children have been looking at the signs of winter and trying to expand their vocabulary with new wintry words. We have also been learning about animals that live in cold places and what we do differently in winter compared to summer.

As well as recapping letter sounds learned last term, we have also been learning new ones! The sound for this week is ‘i’ so we are sounding out at every opportunity! We have also visited Ten Town to meet Freddy Four and Fiona Five and I am so impressed by their increased knowledge of number and keenness to learn! Well done to Acorns for a fantastic start to the new year!

Tigger Reception Class

We have had a fantastic start to the term. We are diving into Fairytales with our Once Upon A Time topic. We had BIG problems when we learned about the Gingerbread man. We decided to bake our own Gingerbread men and gave one to Mr Walker.  Before Mr Walker could eat him, he ran away!! This led to the children writing letters to Mr Walker and the Gingerbread man, making posters asking for his safe return and thinking of ways we could find him. It turned out he has gone on holiday! I wonder when he will be back… This week we have been learning the story of The Elves and the Shoemaker. The children have been developing their language and social skills by role playing in our very own shoe shop. They have also been using lots of maths skills by measuring feet and paying for the shoes. In Maths we have been thinking about different ways to make 5. We are also investigating numbers 6-10, learning how to count these amounts, 1 less and 1 more, recognising and ordering and counting on and back.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Fir Year 1 Class

In Fir Class we have been reading various fairy tales and then retelling them independently focusing on using phonics (please keep doing these at home) and the features of a sentence. In Maths, Fir Class have looked at 2D and 3D shapes. The children have learnt the names of various shapes and then discovered the properties of the shapes. In Science, the children have begun to think about all the materials that are around us and why they are used for certain things. In Outdoor Learning this week we had a short session so we went to look at the flooding on Port Meadow. The children loved splashing, finding sticks to fish with, jumping from one little green island to the next and watching the seagulls. Sorry for any wet socks! Finally thank you very much for all the cards and presents you very kindly gave me for Christmas.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Fig Year 2 Class

We have had a great start to 2020 in Fig Class. Children have been working well on their independent writing and focus. They have been using creative ideas. I particularly enjoyed reading their story starters based on themselves in the style of The Iron Man by Ted Hughes. Based on this text, the class have also been developing their reading skills, answering questions about what they have read, identifying key vocabulary and predicting what might happen next. This week, the children have designed their own ‘Iron Man’ and are building up to writing a character description using ambitious vocabulary including similes.

In Maths, we have been practising time to five minute intervals on an analogue clock. The children have enjoyed using the clocks in class to practise this and perhaps it is something that they can continue to show you at home over the coming weeks as it is such an important skill. This week we have been looking at using their knowledge of the 2, 3, 5 and 10 times tables in more formal multiplication calculations and representing this both pictorially and using arrays.

In RE, we have been completing our unit on Christmastide. We have looked at the importance of the Wise Men and the gifts that they brought to Baby Jesus. In class, we thought about what we can offer to Jesus with suggestions ranging from our love to prayers, to showing kindness to others.

We have started our History-based topic of ‘Inventors and Inventions’, exploring early flight and inventions based around this. We have also started to explore the artwork of L.S. Lowry and look forward to creating our own artwork in the style of his work in the coming weeks.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Oak Year 3 Class

Miss Steed, a Brookes University student teacher, has been welcomed into Oak Class and will be with us for the next eight weeks. We are very excited about her teaching our Geography topic as she has been to Borneo so will be an expert!

In Maths, we have been continuing working on multiplication and division calculations and problems with a focus on what happens when we multiple by 10 e.g. looking at related facts between 8X4, 80X4 and 40X8. We are confident at finding the answers to these questions but will continue to work on ways to explain what happens and why. In English, we are beginning to work on poetry and have been looking at a range of poems  discussing rhyming patterns, rhythm within the poems and the affect of similes; next week we will write our own poems about the rainforest. In Science, we have found out about the formation of igneous rocks and sedimentary rocks and, using this knowledge, have looked closely at a range of rocks using magnifying glasses and have tried to group them according to different criteria. The children are becoming familiar with the scientific language linked to this subject.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Ash Year 4 Class

Christmas and New Year seem to be disappearing into a distant memory and Ash Class are truly back into the swing of things with a couple of busy weeks learning into the start of the new term. Children have been expressing their inner cave people by creating amazing Stone Age cave paintings. We have been travelling back in time to the earliest period of human culture constructing our own timeline starting with the Stone Age and investigating key events in history to present day using an extremely long wallpaper roll.

In Science, children’s enthusiasm has been a real delight to see. We got to experience the ‘disgusting’ digestive system (as children described it!) hands-on, by taking turns witnessing how our food breaks down focusing on what happens at each stage on the food’s incredible journey through the digestive system. Progress in children’s swimming is evident, with some children learning the butterfly stroke and others confidence shining by swimming the whole 25 meters of the large pool for the first time. During Maths, children have been exploring multiplication using a variety of methods including the expanded method and calculations on a number line to aid children’s reasoning and fluency in multiplication before we start our new unit on fractions.

A note for the diary – Ash Class are booked on a school trip to the Ashmolean Museum on Wednesday 12th February. Letters will be sent out soon and any parent volunteers available would be greatly appreciated.

A reminder – can all children bring in the correct PE kit for Mondays, clothing for both outdoor and indoor PE sessions, as this can vary week to week.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Bay Year 5 Class

The past few weeks have been busy in Bay Class. Firstly, 12 children took a two day course in cycling called Bikeability – all children passed the final assessment, with some even achieving advanced level certificates! While this was happening, the rest of the class began our D&T project creating batik designs on fabric. So far, we have practiced using and mixing different dyes and had a go at applying wax using a traditional Indian tjanting – all great, messy fun! We have also been writing some brilliant poems inspired by “Khwab” (the hindi word for dreams). We have imagined we are mythical Indian birds soaring over cities in India and describing what we can see below – some of these will be on display in the classroom if you would like to come and read them.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser. 

Willow Year 6 Class

Willow Class have been looking at newspaper reports and what language is used when stating facts and if they are using opinions, how they represent this information. They have also understood that an article needs to be balanced to be impartial. It would be great if you could get your children to either read some articles over the next two weeks or even watch BBC’s Newsround as there is many interesting debates for them to have.

In Maths, we have been working on decimals. So far, the children have multiplied and divided by 10, 100 and 1,000 as well as doing this with while numbers. It would be great for them to practice multiplying and dividing by whole numbers (especially with 2-digits) and for them to make sure that the decimal point stays where it is and never moves.

Lastly, in Science, they have looked at refraction and the spectrum in our unit of light. They have understood how light travels through different mediums and how prisms bend the light.

Click here for this term’s Topic Overview and Knowledge Organiser.