Prep Five Maya afternoon

Prep Five spent an entertaining and informative afternoon learning about the Maya people this
week with history facilitator Del Bannister. The Maya were an ancient civilization form Mesoamerica, and we found out about their culture, rituals, diet and clothes by working in teams to sort a range of artefacts. Theses included musical instruments, materials, cocoa pods, masks, fabric, a chocolate whisk and a tiny worry doll, (Mrs. Sweeney’s favourite artefact!) as well as an incredibly intricate calendar.

Having studied the artefacts, we could begin to appreciate that the Maya were a lively and colourful civilisation, and this was clearly seen in the clothes which they wore. Adam and Maya modelled the typical outfits of a Maya man and woman beautifully and looked very smart. The clothes also reflected the warm climate of Mayan lands and would certainly not be suited to our current weather!

We also arranged our class so that it reflected the organisation of a Mayan city. This was great for the city ruler, Kian, and the powerful priests Jacob and Hamza, who told everyone what the gods wanted them to do. Then came the nobleman, who also enjoyed positions of authority. The farmers, soldiers and peasants were next in the social pyramid, and finally there were the slaves, any of whom might be needed for a human sacrifice if the gods needed appeasing. This last group were not too happy with their place in the city’s hierarchy!

Our final challenge was a food quiz, and we used our senses to identify nine different foods which the Maya people ate. Some of these were very familiar – we all recognized the vanilla pods and the chili flakes, and Hin Lun was quick to recognise the dried mango, which he often has as a morning snack. Rather more surprising was the lizard and the monkey… we were not sure we would like to find either of these ingredients in our snack boxes!

Prep Five engaged in all the activities with enthusiasm, asking and answering questions thoughtfully like true history detectives. Our thanks go to Mrs. Bannister for all her hard work and organisation, and to all our parents for their continued support.

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Reception explore Middle Eastern flavours

Reception Class have continued with the ever popular Wednesday Kitchen since we ceased virtual teaching. The children love it! Last week we made bread, related to the story ‘The Little Red Hen’ from our current theme, Traditional Tales. This week we cheated and made houmous, just because we love it!

The children wrote down the ingredients, spelling the words themselves using their own phonic knowledge as you can see. All the children had a little taste of at least the pitta bread if not the houmous.

Well done everyone! What will we make next week at Mrs. Pritchard’s Wednesday Kitchen?
Watch this space!

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World Maths Day celebrated across Prep classes

Since Pythagoreans created the word “mathematics” in the 6th century BC, numbers have been a beneficial and challenging part of life. Whether the actual crunching of numbers sounds exciting or repulsive, celebrating World Maths Day can be oodles and oodles of fun, as our Prep Department classes found out today. From Prep I through to Prep VI, our children put their Maths skills skills to the test, practicing them in a variety of fun, innovative ways.

Reception Class had great fun using the weighing scales! The children worked out which objects were heavier or lighter by the way the scales moved. They watched a PowerPoint all about it too! They saw how the lady in the Post Office weighed all the parcels. Don’t be fooled by size either! The children have learned that smaller parcels can be heavier than big ones! What a superb learning opportunity they have had!

Prep I used tally and bar charts to record their favourite crisp flavours. First they had to remind themselves what each flavour tasted like (of course!) and then recorded their results on a tally chart. This was then transferred onto a bar chart. This way, they could easily see which was Prep I’s favourite flavour. This was… Salt and Vinegar. We were also surprised to find out that Prawn Cocktail and Bacon flavour crisps are both suitable for vegetarians, as they contain no prawn or pork ingredients at all!! Wow.

Prep II used Lego as a basis for their maths activities; Prep III’s games included addition puzzles and activities. Prep IV rotated around a series of maths puzzles and challenges, the most taxing of which was to find out just how many of the Skittles they were using for their data handling activity had been eaten by Mr. Suter before they could be tallied (answer: a lot!). Data handling was the focus in Prep V, this time with Smarties as the lynchpin of the data handling, amid great restraint by the children.

Prep VI used string, metre rulers and calculators to work out the diameters of trees in the school grounds. They measured girths (circumferences) using string then divided this by pi (3.142) to find diameters. Under official rules within a TPO area (tree preservation order) any tree with a diameter greater than 10.2 cms (4 inches) measured at mid-chest height (approx. 1 metre from the ground at the foot of the trunk) requires permission if it is to be pruned, crown-reduced or felled. Failure to comply can result in fines between £4,000 and £10,000 per tree!

Practical Maths in action!

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The programmers of tomorrow…

Prep I have been continuing their early steps into computer programming, learning how to program a floor robot, or BeeBot. They have seen that the robot moves forwards and backwards a fixed distance and have understood that the robots follow a clear, fixed command in a precise and repeatable way. The children have predicted the outcome of a sequence of instructions, and then tested those predictions to see how accurate they have been. Today, BeeBots – who knows what these children will be programming once they are older?!

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A peas-ful day in the garden…

The recent sunny weather has seen our Junior Gardeners able to bring out some of the plants they have been growing inside out into the garden. This week we had a double dose of peas – sweet peas (worth growing for the beautiful colours and scents, as well as the perpetual supply of seeds for future years) and the edible variety. Our Prep IV gardeners carefully transplanted the plug plants out into large containers (thank you Mrs. Millet for the kind donation!) – watch this space for their progress!

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Olly’s charity walk

This month, Prep II pupil Olly embarked on a journey with his auntie to raise money for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity by walking a collective 130 miles. Olly, who has been a regular visitor to the Children’s Hospital since birth and recently underwent further significant surgery, also suffers from Hypopituitarism – a rare condition that makes emotional and physical stresses potentially life-threatening, making the last year particularly hard for his family. Despite this, Olly’s positive outlook is unwavering and, as he focuses on his task of raising money to help other children, his Bridgewater family couldn’t be more proud of him. We continue to be inspired by the strength and positivity of this young individual and next week, Olly’s classmates will join him in his challenge and complete his daily mile as a team.

We hope you will join us in showing your support.

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World Book Week Challenge Winners Announced

As part of World Book Day – which was extended to a week here in Bridgewater – Miss Gill tasked children with a variety of book related challenges. You can see Miss Gill’s video here. Today, the prizes were awarded for those children from each class who completed the most of these challenges.

Well done to all of our winners, to all the children who took part.

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Sunflowers on their way up!

We’re delighted with first reports from our Prep growers of the progress of their sunflower seeds. We have to say that KG’s Lachlan seems to be the front runner at the moment (much to Mrs. Sweeney’s chagrin!) but there is a long long time to go yet. Well done to Donya and Lachlan for getting us going with their progress photos – we’d love to see more of these. Email them to Mr. Suter. If you haven’t planted yours yet, there is still time – but don’t leave it too long!

You can see our original competition post here.

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The Prep Magazine – Spring edition 20-21

Please find attached a copy of our Spring edition of the Prep magazine, showcasing the work of our children throughout the department. Click on the cover page below to open the edition. We hope you enjoy it.

You can find previous editions of the magazine here:

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Easter Bonnet Bonanza!

This morning’s arrival in school was a joy to behold as our children were festooned in the most amazing, colourful Easter bonnet creations. Well done to everyone for the creativity in making them – they really brightened up the morning!

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