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:  

https://www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/school-closures

Covid-19 – Know The Symptoms

Thank you to all our families for their continued support and understanding throughout our return to school with regards to Covid-19.

We would like to remind parents and carers of the common symptoms and that pupils should not attend school if:

  • They are displaying any of the symptoms associated with Covid-19 such as a high temperature (37.8C or above), a new continuous cough or a change in sense of smell or taste.
  • A member of the household has tested positive or is displaying symptoms.
  • They have been contacted as part of the Test and Protect programme.
  • If a pupil is returning from a country from which as are required to quarantine for 14 days. An up to date list of countries affected by this can be found at https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-public-health-checks-at-borders/pages/exemptions/

Should you require to arrange a test for a your child or a member of your household, please follow the guidance given on the NHS Inform website and book a test via https://self-referral.test-for-coronavirus.service.gov.uk

We recognise that accessing a drive through test site or a home test kit may be extremely challenging for some of our pupils and if this is the case, you may be eligible for testing to be carried out at home by the NHS. If you require this, please email gram.staffcovid19testing@nhs.scot giving the pupil’s name, date of birth, full address, GP information and a brief explanation for special circumstances which require the need to be tested at home rather than through a home test kit or drive through test site.

We kindly ask that parents and carers keep the school informed of any testing being undertaken and the results by phoning the school on 01224 788950.

The benefits of playing shop in Room 8


Pretend play makes up a very important part of our class activities. It allows our group to play different roles and test our pupils’ reactions and responses to different situations. Playing shop is great for this type of activity-based learning.

Our pupils had as much fun setting up the shop as they did playing shop, and they learned an awful lot too!

Children had fun being supported writing the main shop sign, collecting things that can be ‘sold’ in the shop.

We had a little play-till for our shop and the kids loved punching in numbers and calling out the prices of things. They priced things with labels and practised writing numbers too. They started to understand how price and value differ from item to item.

We used play money giving coins (£1 and £2) and notes (£5 and £10) in exchange for items that they ‘bought’ from the shop. This was a great way to introduce the concept of money and trade.

Of course, every shop needs to be in good order if the customers are going to be able to find things! Perhaps all the food should go on one shelf and toiletries on another. Therefore, we got some great plastic food items like fruits and vegetables that helped the children to play and identify, or sort, different items.

Next step for our pupils is to use some real fruit and veg, bread and cans to get ready them to ‘buy’ themselves a healthy snack/lunch.

In Room 8 we know the value of pretend play, and encourage the fun times and learning experiences that activity-based play can bring. So, you could help us upcycling some household items and collecting some baskets and paper shopping bags for our learner’s very own shop. Thank you in advance.

Room 17 Art Gallery Visit

Room 17 had a very exciting visit to the Art Gallery.  One of our class was in an exhibition celebrating 150 years of Voluntary Service Aberdeen (VSA).  It was really exciting to see a video with Waleed and his family projected on to a huge wall in the Art Gallery. We all enjoyed our bus outing and seeing our friend in his starring role.

Adventures with Room 18

We had a great time at the end of last term getting out and about and enjoying some trips!  We went to a Boccia tournament in Peterculter where we tried lots of different Boccia based games with children from lots of schools.  We went to a RSNO concert at the Music Hall where we heard the story of Gaspard the Fox and then we enjoyed a picnic at Duthie park. We were even lucky enough to try curling on the ice at Curl Aberdeen, we played lots of games and had a chance to try a mini match at the end!

Drake Music

Abi Sinar, a musician with Drake Music, has been working with students at Orchard Brae for the last two years, even throughout lockdowns, in developing the North East Digital Orchestra project. The ultimate goal of the project is to create a digital orchestra for school leavers and young adults, enabling them to develop their musical skills and create new music using a range of inclusive music technologies.

Pupils who have been involved in the project have been supported by Abi to develop their musical skills using a variety of accessible instruments and have created this video for you to enjoy, where they play Ode To Joy as well as their own additional compositions to the song.

Many thanks to Abi for her support and in making the film. If you would like to find out more about Drake Music and their work, please follow the link below:

https://drakemusicscotland.org/

Working Hard In Room 2

Room 2 pupils all enjoy learning at Orchard Brae School – look at the happy smiling faces we’ve managed to capture on camera. We’ve included evidence of our pupils achieving some of their targets as well as planned learning activities.

A Hole in the Bottom of the Sea

Last term, Room 10, as part of their topic project, were exploring the story “A Hole in the Bottom of the Sea”!

We’ve explored fast and slow with movement games in class, to link with the lyric “grows at speed”.  We’ve investigated capacity with a range of containers with water and other sensory resources, including several containers with holes in, to build our understanding of of the hole in the story.  We’ve played with light (including with adapted switches so we could control them) and reflective materials to support understanding of one story feature – the sun!

Alongside this we’ve been busy with a wide range of broader learning.  We loved choosing pancake toppings for pancake day and our science project for that week involved trying to get felt “pancakes” to our target, which was great fun!  A particular highlight of the last few weeks has been sessions on the adapted bikes with Salvi from P.E. – the effort and enthusiasm from the whole class has been fabulous!

Take A Break

Take a Break Scotland are pleased to announce that they are now open for applications!

Take a Break provides grants to unpaid carers of disabled children and young people, who have complex additional support needs, or serious or life-threatening health conditions.

Applications are open until 5:00pm on Monday 20 June 2022.

If you have concerns about travelling either in the UK or overseas, there are options on how you can use your grant if awarded.

Visit their website: https://takeabreakscotland.org.uk for more information and how to apply online.

Developing the Outdoor Space

Our Outdoor Learning team- Roddy and Sharon- have been working hard to develop our outdoor space. The latest addition is two planter benches. Lots of us have already enjoyed sitting in the sun on them. Room 6 worked hard to get the planters ready for planting by drilling drainage holes in the trays. Room 10 then filled the planters with compost ready for the plants to go in. We are very impressd with the work these classes have been doing. The planters look fantastic and we are very excited to see how things grow.

Well done everyone!

Bucket Time Progress in Room 16

Room 16 have been taking part in Bucket Time this year which is based on Attention Autism. There are 4 stages to it which are worked through over the week several times. We have seen each pupils’ attention increase significantly across the year and are so impressed with everyone looking and listening to the activities so intently. Everyone’s favourite part is definitely part one where we look at and listen to lots of funny toys or items in the bucket. Anything that flies and makes a funny noise is always a winner in Room 16!