News

Latest news from around the school

This week’s message (Friday 05 May 2023)

Posted on 05 May 2023 by Mr Roundtree

May’s always a busy time in school with statutory assessments beginning. Today, we’ve also had activities linked to the coronation.

We’re a beacon

We’re very proud to have been recognised as going far beyond the national criteria to achieve Healthy School status: due to our long-standing commitment to the Healthy Schools framework and the excellent work that we do to promote being happy and healthy, we’ve been awarded the status of Health and Wellbeing Beacon School.

When an assessor from Leeds Health and Wellbeing Service recently visited, the feedback was fantastic:

As a result of strong leadership and staff’s commitment to developing the whole child, the Healthy Schools framework is an integral part of school life. Great time and effort are put into ensuring that every opportunity to improve the health and wellbeing of the whole school community, is utilised which is reflected in the school aim – to be a happy and healthy place to learn.

 

PSHE [Personal, Social and Health Education, or what we call Living and Learning] has a high profile in school and is very well led and managed. The Health lead has worked hard to build an impressive curriculum that meets the statutory guidance and beyond…

 

A wide range of after school clubs are available, with pupil and parent voice influencing what is on offer, daily Wake Up Shake Up sessions are run by pupils, Sport leaders run lunchtime activities and there are many opportunities to take part in competitions.

Read the full feedback.

Stress-free SATs

Next week, Year 6 pupils have their end-of-key stage assessments – their SATs. Check out these seven top tips to support your child doing the SATs. (They’re useful for lots of children, lots of the time, too!)

Dates

Because of the coronation, all the Year 6 tests are one day later than normal. This means that our original training day, originally scheduled for Friday 12 May, is now Monday 15 May. We’re closed on this day.

Neurodiversity

‘Neurodiversity’ describes the different ways that people’s brains develop. Everyone’s brain is unique but the majority of us have similar brains to others. Our brains affect how we experience the world around us and how we react to it. Neurodiversity includes neurotypical and neurodivergent people. Neurodivergence describes people whose brains have developed differently, including autistic people and those with ADHD, dyslexia, dyscalculia, developmental language disorder and Tourette syndrome. The list of neurodivergent brain types is ever changing as we learn more.

NHS MindMate has recently launched a great website with loads of really helpful information, tips and advice – check it out.

Whatever you get up to this weekend, enjoy a happy and healthy – and longer – weekend!

Fit for a King!

Posted on 04 May 2023 by Mrs Weekes

When Manning Stainton, the estate agent, launched a competition to design bunting for the King’s coronation, lots of our children entered. This young man, one of our friends from Reception, entered with a fabulous design and he is one of the children who won!

His design has been put on to some bunting and will be displayed on the big day – he also won a prize for himself and £100 for the school.

Thanks to Manning Stainton for organising the competition and well done to all those who entered – massive well done to our winner!

 

This week’s message (Friday 28 April 2023)

Posted on 28 April 2023 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s message is about this half-term’s topic…

Topics are the vehicle for delivering much of the learning in the foundation subjects (eg Art, History, Geography). Each half-termly topic has a driving subject – the main focus for teaching pupils knowledge and skills.

Read more about the intent, implementation and impact of our topics.

This half-term, we’re historians. We’ll develop our understanding of people and events in Britain and the wider world.

Each phase has age-related specific knowledge, skills and vocabulary. (See pages 29 and 30 of our Curriculum Statement.)

Each phase also has key historical concepts which will feature within most lessons. These historical concepts are themes that are revisited, strengthened and deepened during your child’s journey through the history curriculum. (See page 24 of the Curriculum Statement.)

Years 1 and 2

In this topic, children will learn about two significant individuals who stood up for something they believed in. Nelson Mandela is famous across the world for his devotion to equal rights for black people in South Africa.  Leonora Cohen was a suffragette from Leeds who fought passionately for the right to vote for women. Children will learn about what they believed in, what they did and the impact that they had. They’ll also consider what they believe strongly about and how they can make a change.

The key concept that children will learn about in this history topic is inequality.

Years 3 and 4

In this topic, children learn about the Leeds West Indian Carnival. They’ll learn about the carnival’s founder, Arthur France, and how he came to Leeds from the West Indies. They’ll learn about how Arthur and friends started the carnival. They’ll then use a range of historical sources to study how the carnival has changed and how it has stayed the same. Children will finally learn about the origins of West Indian carnivals by learning about slavery and the slave trade.

The key concepts for this topic are trade, inequality and power.

Years 5 and 6

In this topic, children learn about what life was like in Britain during World War II. Children will begin by learning about how the war began. They’ll then learn about the mass evacuation of Jewish children from Germany to Britain. Next, they’ll learn about the Blitz and the evacuation of British children from towns and cities to the countryside. They’ll then learn about the role of women. Finally, they’ll investigate life after the war. They’ll learn about how the opportunities for women narrowed again and also the important role that immigration from Commonwealth countries played in helping Britain to rebuild after the war.

The key concepts for this topic are invasion, inequality and power.

How can you help?

Talk to your child about what they have been learning in class. The class news pages of the school website are a good place to go to find out more about what the children are doing.

Find some books from the library which match what your child is learning.

Visit Abbey House Museum as they have some artefacts relating to suffragettes and Leonora Cohen – it’s also a great visit, regardless of which period children are learning about. Leeds residents also get free access to nearby Kirkstall Abbey which is great to explore on a sunny day.

Leonora Cohen also has a blue plaque on a house she lived in on Clarendon Road in Woodhouse. Your teacher would love to see a selfie of you with her plaque!

Nelson Mandela Gardens in Millennium Square commemorates Mandela’s visit to Leeds when he has presented with the Freedom of the City. It’s a small, calm space well worth visiting if you’re in the city centre.

On Monday 01 May, you can book tickets to an illustration workshop at Harewood House with Kate Pankhurst, the author of the Fantastically Great Women books.

For World War II, Eden Camp is a great visit. Also in North Yorkshire is Yorkshire Air Museum which will be of particular interest to anyone wanting to learn more about the planes used during the war.  A bit closer is the Royal Armouries museum which has weapons and armour from a wide variety of time periods and places around the world.

Finally, it’s a little while away but a visit to the Leeds West Indian Carnival in August will give children the opportunity to experience the event in real life.

Super skippers

Posted on 26 April 2023 by Mrs Taylor

Here are the final results from the Year 4 skipping festival this week.

The Skipping School programme (for Year 2 and Year 4) is one of the ways we invest our PE Premium so we always like to check if the investment was worthwhile for the children.

Pupil feedback

I learnt lots of new skips. Now I can do fancy footwork and at first I had no clue what to do!

I enjoyed the skipping festival because we got to have a little bit of competition and skipping is great exercise.

I couldn’t do side straddle and now I have learnt how to do it.

I learnt different skips and I had a really good time at the festival.

I really enjoyed it because of all the new things I learnt.

It was good to do skipping in PE as well as other sports.

I learnt to have fun whilst exercising and winning doesn’t matter. Taking part was important.

Parent feedback

My son thoroughly enjoyed this event. He doesn’t normally do PE competitions so it was really good for the whole class to go. He was so proud of his two certificates.

Organiser feedback

Your Year 4s did an amazing job at the festival this morning.

This week’s message (Friday 21 April 2023)

Posted on 21 April 2023 by Mr Roundtree

We hope you had a happy and healthy Spring break.

Industrial action

First, in case you missed an earlier message this week, is some advance warning about the forthcoming industrial action by members of the National Education Union (NEU).

The next two days of strikes are Thursday 27 April and Tuesday 02 May. Moortown Primary will be closed to pupils in all classes except Year 6 and Year 2 on these days.

We apologise for the inconvenience that this may cause. We know you understand that this is a difficult situation.

Walk or wheel to school?

After the two week Sustrans Big Walk and Wheel walking, scooting and cycling challenge, we now have the final results.

In our category of small primary schools, we finished in 24th place out of 514 schools with an average of 91.14% of our journeys to school being active. We achieved the highest national (24th) and Northern England (5th) ranking out of those schools in Leeds taking part.

This is a great achievement – a big thank you for supporting the challenge.

We hope these active journeys continue. By walking, cycling and scooting to school, you’re helping us make a positive change to the school run. With fewer cars close to the school gates, this is a safer and healthier way to start the day.

Class trips

Thank you very much for your responses to the recent survey about class trips. The feedback has been really helpful. The key message we’ve received is that you’re very keen for school trips to happen more regularly and that you see a lot of value in them:

  • ‘I think they are an important part of the curriculum to enhance learning and make connections with the real world. They also form a memorable part of school. In summary, an invaluable experience.’
  • ‘Great that these are coming back following the pandemic.  Thank you for putting time and energy into making these a possibility again. In terms of the regularity of class trips, the vast majority of people would like there to be more than one trip per year. We’ll aim to offer two class visits per year, but this does depend on receiving enough voluntary contributions from all parents/carers.

You also gave us a variety of other feedback and suggestions which we’ll consider. Examples of useful points raised include scheduling trips on a Monday or Friday if classes need parent helpers; a memorable visit doesn’t have to be something new or expensive or a long distance away; and weekly direct debits to build up contributions – we’ll ponder over your suggestions as well as start putting in place a schedule of trips across all year groups.

Attendance matters

For the year so far, up to the Easter holiday, the whole-school attendance rate is 95.8% – thank you for making sure your child attends school as much as they can.

Here’s how each class has helped contribute to the 95.5% figure:

  • Reception: 94.3%
  • Year 1: 95.7%
  • Year 2: 96.3%
  • Year 3: 95.7%
  • Year 4: 96.8%
  • Year 5: 96.0%
  • Year 6: 95.8%

Enjoy the weekend.

If you’re celebrating, happy Eid!

West Yorkshire School Games Cross Country Final

Posted on 20 April 2023 by Mrs Taylor

A huge well done to our star Year 6 star runner who, after finishing 1st place in the Leeds final, represented Leeds today in the rearranged West Yorkshire Final at Temple Newsam. He ran a fantastic race and finished in a very impressive 6th place out of a very large field. What a great achievement!

 

 

Big Walk and Wheel final results

Posted on 17 April 2023 by Mrs Taylor

After the two week Sustrans Big Walk and Wheel walking, scooting and cycling challenge, we now have the final results.

In our category of small primary schools, we finished in 24th place out of 514 schools with an average of 91.14% of our journeys to school being active. We achieved the highest national (24th) and Northern England (5th) ranking out of those schools in Leeds taking part.

This is a great achievement and we want to thank families for supporting this challenge.

We hope these active journeys continue as by walking, cycling and scooting to school, you are helping us make a positive change to the school run. With less cars close to the school gates, this is a safer and healthier way to start the day.

An 'egg-cellent' way to finish Spring term

Posted on 03 April 2023 by Mrs Weekes

Well done to everyone who entered the PTA egg decorating competition. There were some fantastic entries – I’m very glad that I didn’t have to judge them and decide the winners. Look at the amazing entries…

…and a very special mention to this entry from Huey in Reception (I’m very pleased with his version of me!).

Here are our lucky winners – I wonder if they’ve eaten their prize yet?

Thanks to the PTA who organised the event.

Enjoy the Spring break.

This week’s message (Friday 31 March 2023)

Posted on 31 March 2023 by Mr Roundtree

We’ve reached the end of the Spring term – the longer evenings are so welcome!

Fun and fundraising

Here at Moortown Primary, it’s been a very busy week to end the term.

There was a very tricky job for Mr Shine: he judged the egg decorating competition! It took him a long time but finally he decided on winners from each class… Awais (YR); Joshan (Y1); Jemima (Y2); Daniyal (Y3); Harjas (Y4); Evie (Y5); and Isla (Y6). Well done to everybody who entered!

The children in Years 3 and 4 performed Go for Gold – they were amazing! From the talented technical assistant to the perfect performances, everybody did a brilliant job. Here are some of your comments:

  • ‘Out of the many primary performances I’ve seen, that had to be the best.’
  • ‘The singing was fabulous, the costumes were amazing and the kids were slick, funny and so confident. You must be extremely proud.’

Well done to all of the children and a massive thank you to all of the staff who were involved. The performances raised £140.00 for our current school charity, St Gemma’s Hospice.

Talking of fund-raising, last week’s non-uniform day for Comic Relief raised £238.30.

And our recent sponsored event to test our number facts and times tables recall raised a whopping £1686.10. This money will be split across St Gemma’s Hospice and school (we’ll put the money into our pot to invest in The Green, our new grassed area at the back of school).
A big thank you for all the money raised recently.

Positive Relationships

A few months ago, we asked you for feedback about our current Positive Relationships Policy. A big thanks to those of you who sent in your comments. Since then, we’ve also consulted with our Junior Leadership Team, governors and staff. All the views have been carefully considered.

Our updated policy has various changes, the main one being new school rules – shorter and more positive. We’ll launch the new rules in the Summer 2 term – a gradual change to allow staff and pupils to get used to them ready for the new school year in September.

Check out the updated policy. We’re happy to hear your views and will continue to review and respond.

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

Leeds SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice Support Service) host virtual information sessions which aim to provide parents and carers with information, advice and support on SEND topics. There are three virtual information sessions coming up – check them out and book a place.

I hope you’ve got some happy and healthy plans for the Easter break – whatever you do, enjoy it! We’ll see you on Monday 17 April.

Smart Money Award 2023

Posted on 27 March 2023 by Mrs Taylor

Today, we welcomed Nicola and Linda from HSBC to our whole school assembly to present us with our Smart Money Award 2023.

This is awarded for financial education lessons which took place in school for all classes last summer as part of our Living and Learning curriculum.

Nicola combined this visit with some more financial education for the children.