Orchard Brae @ Ashgrove Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

The sun rose brightly on the day of our Platinum Jubilee Celebrations making for a fun and sun filled afternoon for our families. This was our first meet up with parents/carers since Covid began. What a wonderful afternoon was had by all – the children made Jubilee Crowns and there was a sensory activity with British coloured rice. They enjoyed British cupcakes, refreshments and strawberry marshmallow kebabs. The children and families participated in a singalong and then it was time for the certificates to be handed out: I Celebrated the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Countdown To Christmas

Orchard Brae Advent Calendar: Days 15 and 16

Apologies for no Countdown yesterday (Santa’s mischievous elves were tampering with the technology!) so today we are sharing two special festive treats.

For Day 15, please join the pupils from Orchard Brae Nursery@Ashgrove as they show you their drumming talents!

For Day 16, we are delighted to share our Makaton Choir’s performance of ‘I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas’ which was shown at the recent Evening Express Carol Concert at P&J Live.

Exploring ‘Things That Go’ In Nursery

The children in Howes Road nursery class have been exploring lots of ‘Things That Go’ in their play and have been engaged in a series of art opportunities. 

We have explored painting with balls of different sizes and textures on a big and small scale – a big group session where there was lots of fun throwing, dropping and rolling and as individuals where we used trays – some children chose to move the balls in the paint independently and others had lots of fun tipping the trays to make them roll. 

Driving toy cars through paint and using rollers of different sizes had us working hard on controlling our hands as well as watching and tracking the movement.  Toy cars on the ramps outside combined with paint was a great experiment too… ‘ready steady go’ and lots of laughter could be heard from afar! 

There has been so much creativity and a lot of very active participation in these sessions as you can see from the photographs. 

Kiltwalk 2021

On Friday 23rd April, Orchard Brae will participate in some fun Kiltwalk activities. Pupils and staff will be dancing and walking, along with potentially other fun activities. Pupils can wear something tartan to school that day if they wish. There is no expectation of fundraising or donations.

However, if anyone is keen to fundraise, Friends of Orchard Brae still have Kiltwalk places available for both adults and children to help raise money to further develop our Outdoor Learning Area. Registration for these places is free and if interested please e-mail: friendsoforchardbrae@mail.com

All money raised through this year’s Kiltwalk will be topped up with an additional 50% from The Hunter Foundation.

Rights Respecting School

Orchard Brae are beginning the journey to becoming a Rights Respecting School. In line with our vision and aims (https://orchardbrae.aberdeen.sch.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Orchard-Brae-Visions-and-Aims.pdf), we aspire to be a school where children’s rights are at the heart of our ethos and culture, to improve well-being and to develop every child’s talents and abilities to their full potential.  Moving towards summer we will be working to put together an action plan to allow us to progress this work with pupils taking the lead as we go forward, our aim being to gain Rights Respecting School Awards through Unicef UK in recognition of sustained practice in this area.

Unicef UK is the world’s leading organisation working for children and young people and their rights. In 1989, governments across the world agreed that all children have the same rights by adopting the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), and earlier this week the Scottish Government reached agreement that the UNCRC will become be incorporated in domestic law. These rights are based on what a child needs to survive, grow, participate and fulfil their potential.

Pupils and staff will learn about children’s rights, with staff supporting children to access their rights every day. Rights and respect will be modeled in all relationships, supporting our children in developing their awareness of good citizenship.

We really hope that you will be able to support our school on the journey towards becoming a Unicef UK Rights Respecting School. Further information sessions will be scheduled for parents and carers next term.

A user friendly version of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) can be accessed here: https://bit.ly/3rYe27f

The full UNCRC convention can be found here: https://cypcs.org.uk/rights/uncrc/full-uncrc/

For further information about Rights Respecting Schools please visit:  www.unicef.org.uk/rrsa

We look forward to sharing our learning with you as we move forward together at Orchard Brae.

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year, also referred to as Lunar new Year, is the Chinese festival which celebrates the New Year on the traditional Chinese calendar. This year it falls on Friday the 12th of February. Every year in the Chinese calendar is represented by an animal, 2021 is the year of the Ox.

Below are some activities to help you celebrate at home. Don’t worry if you do not have all the exact items you need, you can replace them with whatever bits and pieces you have at home.

Hope you have fun and Happy Chinese New Year!

This is a story from about how the twelve zodiac years were named by the Jade Emperor.

Cbeebies also have some fun things to make to help you celebrate.

This video shows you how to make a Chinese lantern that you can decorate and hang up.

Children’s Mental Health Week 2021

This week is Children’s Mental Health Week, led by the charity Place2Be. This year’s theme is Express Yourself and is ideal for all of our learners. There are lots of lovely ideas for creativity and self expression with links on their website such as the art ideas below. Every activity has stories and music in addition to the art ideas so there really is something for everyone.

The sample below is from the Colour Project. Click on the links for more information and a sample of what is on offer:

https://www.place2be.org.uk/media/4vkbp5ek/the-art-room-at-home-colours.pdf

The Place2Be website is well worth exploring:

https://www.childrensmentalhealthweek.org.uk/parents-and-carers/

BBC also have links for mental health week with some fun clips for younger children on emotions:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/teach/childrens-mental-health-week/zk37bdm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/teach/class-clips-video/pshe-eyfs-ks1-feeling-happy/znnhvk7

Aberdeen City Educational Psychology Service Hub

Our colleagues at the Educational Psychology Service have recently launched their Digital Hub. This is available online and is well worth a look for supporting both you and your children. These are tough times for everyone so it’s important to care for yourself too. One of my personal favourites is the Circle of Control, a reminder to try not to waste time and energy thinking about about things I cannot control or change.

Explore the Educational Psychology Hub further here:

https://sites.google.com/ab-ed.org/educational-psychology-service/parentscarers

Place2Be Free Training for Staff

Finally, for staff there’s an opportunity to engage in free training around supporting the mental health of our children and young people. Please follow this link:

https://www.place2be.org.uk/our-services/services-for-schools/mental-health-champions-foundation-programme/

As always, feel free to share anything you enjoy!