June’s been a great month at school for N. Ok, there’ve been some things he’s not keen on (moaning about the food has increased since the old cook left, and he moaned about that enough!), and having to do more drama. But other than those, there’s been so many great things happening.

Here’s some of the goings on from School days in June. Only a month to go before year 5 is finished, and he’ll be moving to the top of the school next year and applying for secondary schools. Eek.

Activity week

With N’s class residential being cancelled, instead the class were able to come into school in non uniform all week, and enjoy activity week. It was something special for them, and on the whole N had a great time. His tan intensified after a week of mostly being outside in shorts and t shirt – his ‘farmer’ t shirt tan and white socks are quite spectacular. Plus he’s got a slightly paler forehead where’s he’s worn a baseball cap for most of his time outdoors too.

I think he had 2 highlights to activity week. The first was the climbing wall. They brought in a mobile 30 ft climbing wall for them. He climbed it 4 times although the last time his arms were a bit tired so he didn’t go all the way up. I was pleased with that, because the last time he did a climbing ‘tree’ at Riverside Hub, he didn’t make it to the top. 

The other highlight was tag rugby. He came home wanting to sign up to tag rugby after school club, but it’s a Wednesday and they already have PE (sometimes twice) that day, plus 45 minutes after finishing the club, he’d be at tennis. It’s too much.

They also played hockey, cricket, and a lot of rounders. Being able to wear sports kit all day every day, plus non-school PE kit, N loved it.

school room with desks

Drama practice

N’s dislike of drama continues with the performance key stage 2 are doing. They’re lots of mini plays and his is farming themed. He’s a horse, and he’s learnt his words. But he doesn’t like being critiqued and even worse he hates dressing up. So finding a solution for something that symbolises a horse while being easy to make was challenging. There was a lot of refusal at first about masks, ears, tail etc. There was a mention of face paint which he’s said a definite no to. I’ve cobbled together a ‘hood’ complete with ‘mane’ and ears (which don’t stand up frustratingly – should have used cardboard instead of interfacing). And he has a woollen tail, all to wear with grey trousers and t-shirt. I hope others have homemade costumes too, but he doesn’t seem too bothered about the homemade nature of it. 

I sympathise with him having to take part in these – we didn’t have to do any performances in juniors at our primary school. The new specialist teacher arrived and started putting on huge musical performances that were excellent just as I was leaving. My brother had lead roles in quite a few after auditions. It’s great on one hand that everyone does take part – it’s good discipline, good for memory, and broadens experience, but it’s a lot of effort for everyone involved, and unless they’ve all got speaking parts, a lot of hanging around. Plus costumes are a hassle because I refuse to buy one for just 1 event.

Bee gardens and short stories

Over half term, homework was to write a short story to enter into a competition. They were given 3 different story starters to choose from. N left it til late on in the holiday but he did a good job, no moaning, and not much spellcheck wise needed from me either. I think he likes it when he can type rather than have to write out. Plus having planned the story in class before, it meant he didn’t have to think everything from the start at home. Ok, so the story was a bit jumbled, the grammar and descriptions could have been a lot better. But it was a bit wacky, and not really something that N would usually come out with. I was quite impressed he knew what he was writing and didn’t need any prompts from me. Usually with story writing it’s painful.

Back in school, they’ve been designing bee gardens as part of Radio 2’s bee garden competition. N got very excited about what’s he’s included in his garden. It’s not often he gets excited about creative things, but this task had some logic and planning involved which suits him more. He was very proud when he showed me his design.

Changed bubbles

After half term as expected their mini bubbles changed again. As the older children were doing cycling proficiency, it moved to year group bubbles. N’s still in with 2 friends, but he’s sad he’s not in with 2 others. He was a bit upset on the first day back as noone wanted to play the usual breaktime games and were playing ‘boring’ games. But further in the week he changed his mind and he doesn’t mind the bubble now.

Reading

I’ve spoken so many times about N’s dislike of reading. He only reads when he has to – so holiday reading challenges where they have to finish a whole book. Or in school. Or the Farmer’s Weekly over at the farm. Thankfully, they’ve been doing a lot of quiet time reading at school, and he’s been reading a lot to the TAs.

He struggles to find books he enjoys reading, so has had a lot of the Horrible History books, but they decided that with all the complicated historical names, it wasn’t helping him with flow of reading. So they’ve adjusted to shorter chapter books that are easier and he can read much more fluently. They still had a historical bent, so he thought they were ok. He even came home telling me about the Globe Theatre and Shakespeare burning down his own theatre. At least he’s taking in what he’s reading. It also means he can get through a whole book in 2 reading sessions. He does say they’re quite easy, so hopefully he’ll find more options with a little stretch in.

Sports day 

They’d spent quite a bit of time doing sports day prep in June, ahead of the actual day. We were lucky as school was determined to get parents in to watch so they did it as class slots, with drive in viewing only. It worked well, although I got minimal non blurry photos. N didn’t have a successful sports day, ending up in 4th for the skipping race and hurdles (he was hoping to win the skipping after coming 2nd last year, and practising a lot), and could not keep the egg on his spoon (he’d come 1st or 2nd in the last 2 years, and 1st in practice). He wasn’t too bothered though, and still enjoyed the races.

Onto July, and that’s looking like being a great end to Year 5 (assuming they can do everything planned).

How’s things with your children going?

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