HAPPY WORLD TEACHERS’ DAY
Today has been designated, World Teachers’ Day across the globe and to be honest this is the first time I have taken it under my notice. Shame on me. However, this year I could not let the occasion pass without drawing the attention of our school community to the amazing job teachers do in general and more particularly at Moneyrea. Our teachers are amazingly resilient, resourceful, hardworking, dedicated, giving and compassionate, and I count it a great privilege to work alongside them.
We have witnessed a significant number of classroom closures in primary schools in the Lisburn, Castlereagh and North Down areas; much of which has gone unreported in the media!
To that end we are redoubling our efforts at Moneyrea to maximise the protection of our school community and to minimise the risk of class/bubble closures.
We are asking our families to continue to:
1. sanitise - school bags, lunch boxes and water bottles before coming to school and after coming home from school;
2. take the children’s temperatures in the morning before heading into school;
3. keep children at home if they exhibit C-19 symptoms or have symptoms of other minor ailments;
4. emphasise our key messages on handwashing; not touching the eyes, nose or mouth; respiratory hygiene; playground zoning and walking on the left;
5. continue to maintain social distancing at drop-off and pick-up times;
6. remain positive.
I know that the procedures we have put in place may seem like a chore sometimes, and keeping children at home when they have symptoms of C-19 or other minor ailments is disruptive for parents. However, we have a responsibility to the health and wellbeing of our 270+ staff and pupils that goes far beyond the personal inconvenience of any individual. We take this responsibility very seriously and ask all parents to respect this position.
I would thank our parents for your continued support, encouragement and patience.
Despite the new routines we have put in place our school remains a happy vibrant place and we are doing our level best to achieve a return to normality, as far as it is safe and practicable to do so.
As you know we are trialing the Seesaw App as we prepare for the possibility of classroom bubbles having to isolate for a period of 14 days. Of course we hope this will not be necessary.
However, in that event Seesaw will be used to enable our teachers to deliver the curriculum online, to monitor the children’s learning and to communicate with parents.
We are currently using Seesaw to set homework, some of which are to be returned to the teacher using the Seesaw App. Occasional, essential messages may also be conveyed between teachers and parents using the app. Please note that teachers will not respond to messages during teaching times, after 6.00 pm on school days, or at weekends.
I am aware that in some schools teachers have been inundated with non-essential messages on Seesaw which take up valuable time and impinge upon their private lives. I am pleased to say that generally this has not been our experience at Moneyrea and we are extremely grateful for that.
Ian Pedlow will be in school on Thursday and Friday of this week to take individual photographs of our pupils from Nursery - Yr7. The children are to wear school uniform. Unfortunately, due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, we are unable to offer family/sibling photos.
It is our plan to have poppies available for purchase in school later in the month. Please send in your donation in a sealed envelope, marked POPPY APPEAL.
MONEYREA REMEMBRANCE PLANTER
We are also hoping our families will participate in a mini project to create a remembrance planter within our school grounds. This idea was posted by the Ballygowan and Carryduff Army Cadets:
This activity requires adult assistance and supervision.
https://youtu.be/lLPiavqj7mQ (some ideas on YouTube)
You will need: a clear plastic Coke bottle or similar, black bottle top or black paint or marker, strong scissors, red glossy paint or metallic spray paint, strong glue, a thin dowel rod or similar and green paint.
1. Cut a plastic bottle in half.
2. Now cut across, 1.5cm up from the base of the bottle to create the shape of the poppy flower.
3. (Recycle the left over plastic)
4. Using a nail or similar make a hole through the centre of the flower shape.
5. Use a suitable gloss, acrylic or spray paint to paint the flower shape red. The paint needs to be water resistant.
6. Use a nail to make a similar hole through the centre of the Coke bottle top.
7. Glue the black bottle top in place at the centre of the flower. (Alternatively paint the centre of the flower using black paint)
8. Paint the dowel rod green and place through the flower head, securing it in place with glue.
9. Carefully transport the flowers to school to be planted in our REMEMBRANCE PLANTER
HARVEST ASSEMBLY and FOODBANK
I have asked Mark and AK to provide a Harvest Assembly video for Friday 16th October.
As we are unable to decorate our Harvest table, or take Harvest goodies around the village, we are asking our families to send in items for the local FOODBANK. (Between Mon. 12th and Thurs. 15th) Please send in imperishable items of food (tins), cereal boxes, UHT milk, toiletries and washing/cleaning products.
Football coaching resumes this week for Yrs 2 – 7. Please remember to send in permission slips and £20 to cover coaching costs between now and Christmas.
ULSTER TRIALS CHAMPION
Congratulations to Benjamin Allen on coming first in MCUI - Motor Cycle Union of Ireland (Ulster Centre) Ulster Youth Trials Championship 2019/20 in the 6-9-Year-old category. The championship was held over 10 rounds and hosted in different venues around Northern Ireland by the various motorcycle clubs. A fantastic achievement!
We know that on birthdays lots of children like to bring in cake or buns for their classmates. However, Covid-19 means we have had to rethink how this can happen. So here goes ....
Children may bring in pre-packaged buns/cupcakes, or pre-packaged cakes. Sorry, that means none of that lovely home-baking during the current pandemic. Buns/cupcakes are best; they take less time to serve and there's no cutting or plating up. An alternative would be jumbo bags of pre-packaged sweets such as Haribos. Please remember our strict NO NUTS policy!
Please note we are not promoting this practice, we are merely trying to facilitate those who may wish to continue celebrating in this way.