Winter Reminder

As we head into the winter months, please find below a general reminder of illnesses in school.

Due to the increased vulnerability of our Pupils, we must all take extra precautions when dealing with potential infectious illnesses.

If you feel your child/young person is unwell, please contact the school to check before sending them on to transport.

If your child has required paracetamol/Ibuprofen, please contact the school before putting them on transport.

Pupil Escorts will be encouraged to contact the school if they feel that your child is in any way unwell, so please be patient and understanding.

Other Information

For cough/colds/respiratory illnesses – Please keep your child at home if the following applies:

· coughs where the child young person is unable to perform cough etiquette in the infectious period.

· Runny noses – Green/yellow or constant runny nose.

For Diarrhoea and vomiting

• Please ensure that 48 hours has passed between the last episode of vomiting and or loose bowel movement

If your child/young person has a regular cough/vomits/diarrhoea or paracetamol/ibuprofen for medical reasons, please ensure that the school have been informed of any condition. Otherwise, normal exclusions will apply.

School Closure Information Line

Please find details of the Aberdeen City schools telephone information service for parents/guardians.  This is the Schools Information Line.

 The main features of this service are:

  1. Emergency Arrangements message for Parents/Guardians

To be used to inform parents/guardians of emergency arrangements and important announcements, e.g. early closure arising from adverse weather conditions/failure of heating systems.

  1. Voicemail for Recording non-urgent Messages from Parents/Guardians

The system also has the potential to record brief messages of a routine nature from parents/guardians.  You will be advised at a later date if this feature is to be activated.

  1. List of Messages containing School Information

This could hold routine information for parents/guardians, e.g. the times for a Parents’ Night, School Concert details, etc.

Parents/Guardians can access these features by dialling this National Rate number:

Tel: 0870 054 1999

 A Council message will be heard followed by a request for a six-digit PIN number specific to their child’s school.

The Pin Number for Orchard Brae School is     011890.

 Once connected, a voice will speak out the name of the school and a series of prompts will guide the caller to the appropriate option.  The cost of calls is no more than 10p/call (landline calls).  You can also check school closure status on the School Closure page on the Aberdeen City Council website. Please use the link below:

End of Term Newsletter

Another school year has gone and as I sat through the various ceremonies and prizegiving’s this week, it made me reflect on how well the community comes together to celebrate all our successes.  This year we have been involved in lots of whole city events, where our children and young people have been recognised for their talents, skills and potential, a trend that I hope we can build upon.  Once again, the pupils have made me so proud (and tearful) when I see all of their achievements.

Outdoor Classroom

It will finally be open in August!  Many thanks to our partners, Fairhurst, especially Bob McCracken and Stuart Thompson who have been invaluable in moving this project forward.  Also, we have many more “thanks” to give which we will do in due course.  The official opening will happen in August.


Many thanks to Orchard Brae Connect and Friends of Orchard Brae, whose support to the school is invaluable.

Thank you to all the staff who have, once again, worked hard to support all our pupils to be the best they can be.

Finally, thanks to all the parents and carers who have supported us this year, our community couldn’t thrive without you.

Important Dates

In-service day – Monday 19 August 2024

Term starts – Tuesday 20 August 2024

September holiday – Friday 20 September to Monday 23 September 2024

Term ends – Friday 11 October 2024

Learning about money in our classroom bakery

In Room 6, we recently transformed our classroom into a busy bakery, providing a fantastic hands-on opportunity for our pupils to learn about money and the concepts of big and small items, particularly in the context of £1 and £2 coins. We brought the shop into our classroom instead of shopping in a real shop!

Our bakery project was designed to teach the children essential skills in a fun and engaging way. Each pupil received some play money, including £1 and £2 coins, to spend at our bakery. They could choose between big and small loaves of bread, pay at the till, and even wait for their change. This activity helped them practise counting, recognize different coin values, and understand basic transactions.

Moreover, this experience was multi-sensory. The kids used their senses to immerse themselves fully in the bakery environment. They enjoyed the fresh aroma of the baked goods, felt the different textures of the bread, and, of course, tasted the delicious results of their purchases. This sensory engagement made the learning process enjoyable and memorable.

The bakery project also introduced the concepts of big and small amounts of money and the corresponding bread sizes. The children learned that larger loaves cost more and smaller loaves cost less. This practical exercise helped them grasp these abstract concepts in a real-world context, understanding that bigger items often require more money and vice versa.

Overall, our classroom bakery was a resounding success. It was an excellent way for the kids to learn about money management while having fun. They gained confidence in handling money, making choices, and understanding the value of different amounts. Well done, Room 6! This experience has been educational and enriching for all involved.

Poppy (and Room 9’s!) Busy Weeks!

Room 9 have continued our community focus for this term with a new book study, “Poppy’s Busy Week” by Suzanne Miell-Ingram and Tracey Upton (Singing Hands).  In this story, Poppy visits a different place in her community each day.

We started off by exploring the library, setting up our own class library (and library cards), choosing books and cosying up for a story and playing games to see how quiet we could be!  

After that we headed to the dentist, and alongside a focus on our toothbrushing skills we set up a wee dentist practice in class for role play and exploring symbol recognition skills – we enjoyed seeing our reflections in the mirror!  We had mark-making activities using toothbrushes and sang about brushing our teeth for our listening activity.  

Following on from dentist week we explored the Post Office.  We set up a Post Office in class, with posting activities, envelopes, stamps, cards and more.  During our expressive arts lesson we designed cards which we have since posted to our home addresses, walking to the local post box to post them ourselves.

Throughout all of this we continue to offer free play options which explore other community roles, including dressing up (Room 9 are fabulous at taking on the role of different emergency services!) and toy figures.

Next week we’re exploring a more familiar community feature, school, before moving on to doctors, hairdressers and then houses and homes.  We’re especially looking forward to our end of term community feature – the beach!

Pour a Cup of Kindness With Room 17

8 May was World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.  Globally the Red Cross delivers lots of humanitarian assistance including first aid.  Room 17 pupils have also been doing some first aid and have been working towards their Basic First Aid SQA.  

To celebrate the success of Room 17 pupils and World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day we had a  ‘Pour a Cup of Kindness’ coffee morning.  We invited Room 17 parents and our friends from Howes Hoose to join us.  We also had a visitor, Colin, from the British Red Cross.  Colin presented all the pupils with a First Aid Certificate.  We also had fun with some tea cup photo props. 

Howes Hoose try grass cutting!

Lately the pupils in Howes Hoose have had a go at taming the grass in their garden. Everyone was very keen to take a turn and enjoyed getting dressed up with all the safety equipment, they all looked very official! Everyone listened carefully to instructions and carried out the job safely. A few pupils had already tried out grass cutting at home and were able to show off their skills. There will be plenty more work needing done in the garden to neaten it up before the Summer Holidays begin!

Friends of Orchard Brae 5K Run / Walk

We’re delighted to report that we’ll be hosting the Friends of Orchard Brae 5k Fun Run once again on Tuesday 11th June 2024. This is a fun, friendly event and runners of all abilities are welcome, as are walkers. Please do not worry about your time – we will have a tail walker at the back to ensure you all get home safely and nobody finishes last!

Greene King Brig O’Don Restaurant have kindly agreed to host registration for us again. This will be ‘open’ from 5:30 pm to 6:15 pm, although to help us you can pre-register by completing the Google form online: Please note the minimum age for participation is 11 years, under 16s must be accompanied by an adult as the route does run alongside roads.

After registration, we’ll walk together to the starting point in Seaton Park. The route is stunning, all the more so on the beautiful evenings we’ve had for previous events. All being well we’ll get another fine evening. Whatever the weather, fun and good banter is pretty much certain with the crowd of friends we’ll have along.

Post event, we’d encourage you to head back to Brig O’Don for food or refreshments as thanks to them for supporting us again.

The event is free to enter although donations are welcome. Online donations can be made at:

Any queries, please give Clare Russell a shout!

Room 17’s Special Visitors

Room 17 were delighted by the visit of two very special guests – ‘Flicker’ and ‘Winston’ – the therapy ponies. Pupils from the class had the opportunity to stroke each pony and take them for a walk around the hall. The ponies were exceptionally well behaved and seemed to enjoy getting petted from the pupils. We were all very impressed with their little shoes! It was a rare and special treat for everyone!

My Community: Poppy Goes Shopping (with Room 9!)

Room 9 have started to explore our new community theme for this term with a new book study.  We have been reading “Poppy Goes Shopping” by Suzanne Miell-Ingram and Tracey Upton (Singing Hands).

We have brought to life different parts of the story throughout our learning.  In numeracy we have had a shop role-play with symbol-supported shopping lists.  Some of our class even went for a walk to the local shops to buy resources for our sensory sessions.

Our Makaton song sessions have included “Five Currant Buns” and “Ten Fat Sausages” so as to link to the language of the stories (“shop” and “sausages” both featuring).

Perhaps our favourite feature of the stories though has been the pizza that Poppy bought (and ate!).  We have had pizza themed Bucket Time sessions, with Stage Three giving us all a chance to become a pizza!  We made our own mini pizzas for snack which we then ate whilst listening to the story.  We chose our own toppings –  cheese was very popular!  We’ve had pizza art, making our own pizza pictures, and pizza sensory play with basil, oregano and tomatoes in dough – the classroom smelt delicious.

We were very lucky to have the chance to meet the authors of our book study when Singing Hands came in to perform at Orchard Brae, they read the whole story with us and were very impressed by everyone’s signing!

Next week we will be moving on to another Signing Friends story, “Poppy’s Busy Week”, to explore even more features of our community.