First night at Kingswood

The children have started the activities really quickly after arriving earlier.  The greatest early struggles were mainly to do with trying to put a quilt inside a quilt cover.  Team work was the order of the day as the children helped each other to overcome the challenge.

The first ctivity was archery and the children really enjoyed the challenge of learning new skills.  There was some super shooting from lots of children and they coped very well with the cold and the fog.

The children have enjoyed the campfire activity and they loved singing and playing games with the instructors and staff.  It was an awesome experience being deep,in the woods playing games and seeing the children really laughing and enjoying the activity.  Some of the songs will be stuck in my head for many months to come.

The children are now in their dorms ready for a sleep.  I am not sure how much rest they will get as they are very excited about being away.  It promises to be a great week.   Check back on my blog tomorrow for more updates.

The Bus Project….

We have decided to create a series of short film clips that help us share some of our ideas that we have used in school.  If you want to share your thoughts on them that would be great or if you want to work together on a particular idea or project get in touch.

Our narrators have done so well with this new idea and we hope you enjoy watching.

Looking Forward….

It has been a very busy term at Norbridge Academy and there has been many great things to reflect upon.  Our “Get up and give” theme has seen many children and adults across the school community raise lots of money for very worthy causes.  I have been delighted to see so many people work so hard in the service of others.  It has been inspiring to see so many great acheivements by so many people.

Our children have taken part in a wide variey of activities and the staff continue to strive to give the children meaningful learning experiences that are exciting too.  Children have been fortunate to have the opportunity to attend extra lessons to ensure they accelerate their progress as they move through the school year.  I have been really impressed at the attitude and determination of the children.  This will ensure they do well and become resilient, which will help them in life when things may seem challenging.

We have created the company that will mean we will continue to work on developing a Multi Academy Trust.  This will be a chance for schools that have a real focus on learning and their students to become part of a company that delivers high academic standards and an excellent curriculum for all children within it.  The values thay underpin our trust will be honesty, endeavour and integrity.  We will be looking to work with schools that are keen to be part of an organisation that upholds these standards and have a real sense of moral purpose.  In the current educational climate integrity is a key part of partnership working.

We have recently seen the school league tables published and we are placed in the top ten percent of schools in the Country in England.  I am delighted to see the children be successful and I am also grateful to the staff and governors for the work that they do to ensure our children reach their full potential.

I have enjoyed seeing the children work so hard this year and show they are committed to reaching their full potential.  I am sure we will see more success stories as we enter 2017 and I look forward to working with all members of our school community to ensure we deliver a World-Class Education for all of the learners in our school.

Have a great break and see you in 2017.

Summer …..

There are lots of exciting things happening at Norbridge in the coming weeks.  It promises to be a very busy period and we are all excited about the great things that are happening.

We are in the finals of the Pupil Premium Awards in London in May and we are really happy to see the work of the children, staff, governors and directors get some recognition.  We will let you know the results on the day through twitter and my blog.

We have funding to extend our school by six classrooms and we are looking forward to seeing the building develop from scratch over the next twelve months.  The teachers and children are really looking forward to working in their brand new classrooms.  The plans for the building are wonderful and we can’t wait to see the finished building in the near future.

We will be working on a special area to remember James Allbones, who recently passed away.  We will work with James’s parents to develop this area and we are going to create a very special place that his friends can go to and remember him.  We will be having this work completed in the summer holiday.

I will update you with more news as we work as hard as we can to be the best we can be during the summer term.

Away Days and Memories

I am currently on a residential visit with our year six pupils at Peak Venture, near Barnsley.  There was a howling wind as I ventured outside early this morning for my usual walk.  I was met with all manner of weather and it would be fair to say it was a wee bit chilly. I even managed to appreciate some rather stinging sleet!

I was thinking about the things I have seen the children achieve during the first two days of our visit.  I have seen the quieter more reserved children show great courage when climbing to a great height and admired their determination to push themselves to their limit.  It has been a privilege to see the children tackle things they have never done before and it has been clear to me that their resilience and determination has grown.

The greatest part of watching children learning is when you see them having fun and they are sharing experience and knowledge with their peers.  This particular group have been very good at being positive and encouraging their friends when things are tough.

I particularly enjoyed watching them during the activities this morning.

Work – Life Imbalance

I remember when I first qualified as a teacher and my friends discussing their plans to avoid being a teacher-bore.  I hadn’t really heard of the phrase before but I was reliably informed that it meant that all you ever talked about was your job.  It was essentially the art of being utterly consumed by your role.

I resolved very early in my career that I would avoid the teacher-bore issue at all costs.  This can be even more challenging as your career develops as you often find yourself mixing with teachers in your friendship groups.  It happens when we meet teacher-friends for social events or meals, the night can descend into a briefing about what has been happening with work.

I decided to make sure I had a hobby, something to do that was not connected to the day job of being a teacher or Headteacher.

Some of my hobbies include inline skating, watching ice hockey and photography.  I even did a year on hospital radio as a presenter.  That was fun but sometimes a little stressful.

I sometimes talk to teachers and other friends and they some say they don’t really have time for a hobby or anything that is just for themselves.  This is where I think things can become difficult for people in this profession, as it is so demanding and expectations are always high.  We owe ourselves some down time in order to be able to be at the peak of our performance in our day job.

I am a keen amateur photographer and this helps me wind down and concentrate on something that is not related to being a Headteacher.  What do you do to relax and how do you manage to keep a healthy work-life balance?

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