BIRDSEDGE First School is a small school in the village of Birdsedge on the borders of Denby Dale and Shepley.
Many parents from the surrounding area choose to bring their children to our school because there is a feeling of warmth and security.
The older children take responsibility for supporting the younger ones, resulting in a very positive ethos. Behavioural issues are minimal and dealt with quickly, leaving our energies free to offer a lively, stimulating curriculum.
Following our Ofsted Inspection in March 2002 we were proud of the recognition of our very high standards in English, mathematics and science and of above-average standards in the creative arts, but we were exceptionally proud of two findings:
* Pupils have an exceptionally well-developed sense of their responsibilities to each other and to the school community.
* Pupils are taught to question and look for their own answers and as a result they often produce original and thought-provoking work.
To our delight David Bell, Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Schools, recognised our achievements and identified Birdsedge as a `particularly successful school' in his Annual Report for the academic year 2001/02.
We're on the Web - By Jon Burdon, Class Teacher
OUR exciting new website came on line this term.
It is in an early stage of development, but we feel we have come a long way quickly. The website has been written by members of staff and our pupils are now keen to continue add content of their own. The site areas are for Pupils, Parents and Staff.
For pupils the site includes activities and web links are matched to the areas of study for each class. There is also a Maths games menu for each class.
For parents there is an information section, as well as a growing display of children's work, a download area, and a links section.
For teachers there is a range of online teaching tools.
We hope that visitors from outside our school will enjoy seeing the work we have been doing, as well as using our web guide.
You can also find out more about our Art Week on the website. You can visit our site at:
Science Club fun
THE Science Club for Key Stage 2 children meets every Thursday. Challenges this term have been in several different areas:
Floating and Sinking - We experimented with different shapes of Blue Tack to discover which shapes floated well and which sank. We also spent several weeks making our own model pond skater from wire and balsa wood, and yes they actually floated!
Our Wildlife Area - We have been maintaining our fantastic wildlife area, which includes meadow, hedgerow, a pond, and vegetable plots.
Data Logging - Using computer technology, we measured reflected light from various coloured objects in the classroom. Our ongoing challenge is to build a robot that can sense the colour of objects it is moving over and respond to these changes.
CLASS 3 have spent this term learning about the effect of World War Two on civilians in England.
We have researched areas such as evacuation, rationing, air raid shelters and the blackout.
Our work culminated in an exciting and highly enjoyable day out at Eden Camp, a museum dedicated to the war, near Malton, North Yorkshire.
We used different images of the evacuation of children to inspire the following poems:
Being Evacuated, by Thomas Jones and Devan Slater
From city to town
From town to country.
Best clothes made dirty by soot and by steam.
Think it's a holiday paid by the council.
Off on adventure, new things to do.
Excited and nervous they lean from the train.
Into the distance their tears fall like rain.
Being Evacuated, by James Pickford and Ben Martin- Hirsch
The heart-broken boy
Shrivelling up in the corner of the train.
Putting his thumbs up, but really it's thumbs down inside
As the old rusty red train leaves the littered station
Tears roll down his grubby cheek.
Thinking he has forgotten something
The thing he has forgotten is his heart.
Design takes the biscuit
AS staff we felt that the full Design and Technology process was being squeezed out of the rather overcrowded Primary curriculum, because it is so very time consuming.
So this year we have decided to experiment with Design and Technology Days.
As in art, the whole school has concentrated on one area of the subject, our first being Food Technology.
Class 1 experimented with toast making,
Class 2 spent their time exploring, designing and making drinks
and Class 3 became biscuit manufacturers - tasting, making, designing and producing Christmas biscuits.
Enjoying French - By Gill Hambling, Class Teacher
FRENCH was introduced throughout the school in September.
Each class has a lesson each week and the aim is to introduce children to another language in a way that is enjoyable and fun.
Teaching focuses on active learning using puppets, soft toys, songs and games. The children are enthusiastic and learning is often shared with children from other classes at playtime.
Even the youngest children have been able to communicate in French with each other and at this age have no inhibitions about speaking an- other language.
Children throughout the school are at ease speaking in French.
OUR belief in offering an exciting range of opportunities for all children is demonstrated in our extra curricular activity programme.
Every year the children in Class 3 are off- ered the chance to spend a weekend at Boreatton Park, a PGL Adventurous Activity venue.
Abseiling, rock climbing, raft building, kayaking, archery, motor sports, horse riding and a wide range of other activities are on offer, all within exceptionally high health and safety standards.
The `tasting' sessions, each last about half a day.
Busy in and out of school!
EVERY week our children take part in a wide variety of extramural activities, mainly from 3.30pm onwards.
Those who enjoy sport can choose football training led by Huddersfield Town's Sport in the Community project and by Mr Jones, one of our parents.
We were recently awarded the Charter Standard for Football.
Netball is played by both girls and boys, coached by Mrs Clarke, one of our teaching assistants.
In summer we have rounders and short tennis; in autumn cross country.
For those who enjoy less energetic pastimes we offer recorders, guitar, ICT Club, Science Club, our Instrumental Group and chess group, the school band and the Out of School Club, run by Rosemary and Terry.
THROUGHOUT the year our parents organise social events and support school functions.
Without their support we would be very much the poorer and not just in monetary terms.
Their current project is to help to raise money to buy hardware for our new computer suite, which will be built in the New Year.
Should any business be re-equipping and have no further use for computers and printers, please think of us!
Sponsorship would also be welcomed!!