At Cestria we have many special things happening every day!
In Key Stage 1 we are really lucky to offer our super curriculum rooms to the children in Years 1 and 2. Over a two week period, the children visit each of the rooms for 2 sessions to be taught Art, Design and Technology, Computing and Cookery by our highly experienced staff. The rooms are also linked to our oracy project which is designed to develop children’s speaking and listening skills. Our children love visiting each room and working on the special projects. Here’s a little snapshot of some of the things they get up to…
In the Galaxy Zone Mrs Cowan and Miss Hall run our fabulous Art and DT room . The children love coming here to explore the wonderful world of art and artists. It’s great to see the enthusiasm on the children’s faces as they paint their fantastic paintings or mould their super sculptures.
This is also where our architects and builders of the future are being created! Mrs Cowan works with the children on super Design and Technology projects in our very own ’construction site.’ The children are taught the skills and techniques of the DT curriculum, exploring what makes structures strong and stable and creating moving mechanisms.
Enter the Techno Den and you enter a world of iPads, laptops, Beebots and a whole host of other technological gadgets that Miss Gowland uses to extend the children’s computing skills. We love experimenting with different apps using coding, algorithms and creating our own super animations. Online safety is always key and we know how and why it is important to stay safe online.
Food, Glorious, Food! Everyone just loves the Cookery Room. From cakes and biscuits to the more healthy fruit kebabs, the children eagerly wait to find out which delicious meal they will be preparing next! Mrs Holland is our culinary expert leading the way in our cookery room.
And there’s more!
As well as having super children we also have super teachers who have their own skills and talents in certain areas that they like to share with the children. Every Terrific Tuesday the teachers in years 1 and 2 swap classes to teach their specialist area. The children benefit from the teachers’ own enthusiasm for the subject as well as their in depth subject knowledge too! Here’s what we do…
Mr Duncan loves music! He teaches the children all about different composers, they listen to different types of music from around the world but the best bit is when they get the instruments out! If you listen carefully you may just hear the children singing along while he plays his guitar!
Mrs Cutmore and Mr Wilson keep our children fit and active within super PE sessions. They teach all the skills and techniques from the National Curriculum through fun games and team building activities. It’s amazing to watch our children working together and the team spirit that they have.
From visits to religious buildings, to organising special visitors into school, Miss Behenna works really hard to teach the children about the different religions and cultures of the world as well as promoting British Values. Pop into her classroom to see some of the lovely work the children have produced.
Just like in KS1, the children have a fun filled day of exciting lessons led by our staff in Years 5 and 6 in their specialist subject areas – A day where we bring our learning to life in the pursuit of developing mathematicians, avid readers, fitness fanatics and engineers of the future.
More often than not, the classrooms are made redundant and the children can be found ‘out and about’ embracing their love of learning.
Mrs Devlin leads fabulous outdoor maths investigations. There’s not a textbook in sight when the children are off solving problems or investigating maths outside. Whoever said maths can be boring!
Mr Walker keeps everyone fit and healthy with his active PE lessons. Whether it be in the school yard, down at Park View or even at Chester-le-Street park, Mr Walker ensures everyone has fun whilst keeping healthy in a range of sporting activities. You never know, we might just find the next Mo Farah here at Cestria!
When the children do venture inside, they love diving into a good book during Mrs Marshall’s Reading Detectives sessions. Here, Mrs Marshall shares her love of books exploring authors and texts from around the world. Each book they read leads them to a world of imagination, mystery and intrigue from the classics to the comedy of David Walliams.
And finally, our children absolutely love Mrs McGee’s Design Technology sessions. Who doesn’t love designing, inventing and investigating how things work. Not forgetting the best bit when they get to visit our incredible invention shed and turn their ideas into reality. Who know, we might be nurturing some budding architects and designers of the future!
Wow…Wednesday’s are truly wonderful in Years 5 and 6!
Skill Force Prince William Award
Every child is unique, an individual in their own right. At Cestria, we aim to build character, resilience and confidence and empower them to ‘be their best’ and what better way to do this than through the fantastic Prince William Award.
Each week we welcome our brilliant instructor into school who leads our Year 4 classes through team-building, resilience and self-disciplining activities. It’s during these sessions that we nurture the children, teaching them how to channel their unique character attributes successfully to different situations and learn how to adapt and respond to different situations. It’s a tough world out there – we want our children to experience the impact that they can have on it and how collectively they can influence decision-making and recognise that their character values can contribute to the quality of outcome and the type of decisions reached. Our children are the future – let’s prepare them for it!
KS2 Science Investigation Hub
In the Science Investigation Hub, KS2 children have the opportunity to be mad scientists planning and carrying out all sorts of weird and wonderful experiments. Look out for Miss Shaw in here too. In KS1 Miss Shaw comes across and the fun and madness continues with more messy science!
Education Endowment Foundation
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) is an independent charity dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement.
Our school was selected to be a lead school for the North East Literacy Campaign, which was launched in 2016. The campaign is based upon research findings from the Education Endowment Foundation & aims to share good practice in the teaching of Literacy. As a lead (hub) school, our role is to facilitate the sharing of ideas & resources within a cluster of local schools and to act as a conduit between these schools & the local authority. We meet regularly through local authority training as well as through our own hub cluster meetings. As well as supporting colleagues across a network of schools, both our staff & pupils have benefited greatly from our involvement. Many of our new Literacy developments are based on ideas that have come from the campaign or have incorporated ideas shared by colleagues. These have included revisions to the teaching of spelling, handwriting and reading comprehension; the development of focused speaking & listening activities within our curriculum rooms & effective use of TAs to support lessons. We firmly believe that these have, in turn, improved teaching & learning opportunities across the school & helped to accelerate progress in all aspects of English. Diane Marshall KS2 Literacy lead.
Please click on the links to find out more about
KS2 weekly Newsround and KS1 a daily Story Time
Visits to the local library
We have links with the local library where we visit for research purposes or to take part in a storytelling session. Katherine the librarian always has a special story to share with us. To further develop our love of reading we enjoy choosing a book which we can bring back to school to read during Drop Everything and Read time.
Learning Links with other schools and the local community
We regularly welcome visits from pupils from other schools who work with our children on a variety of peer to peer projects. They have included reading, keeping fit and healthy and handy First Aid hints and tips.
Carols at Christmas with Durham Aged Mine workers Homes’ Association
Year 2 had the privilege of singing some of our Christmas songs to residents of the local area at their Christmas Lunch held at Cornerstones . The children sang beautifully and before they left gave everyone a card and sweet and wished them a Happy Christmas. We also have links within the community with care and residential homes such as The Elms.
We often venture out of school and further afar to consolidate the learning that takes place in all areas of the curriculum. The children thoroughly enjoy these adventures and are a credit to the school when out and about.
Today we visited to Newcastle quayside to observe and draw the various human and physical features we could see. We also completed a traffic survey. After that we managed to fit in a visit to the Hancock Museum to look at all the amazing exhibits. Superb behaviour from everyone.
We frequently welcome visitors to our school for storytelling, drama, sport, online safety, First Aid, Mindfulness, fire safety and lots more.
In our classrooms …
To find out more about the special things that take place in our classrooms everyday, please visit our school blog.
Practise Makes Perfect!
At Cestria, we are so proud of how hard our children work and the progress that they make. We constantly reflect upon their work and strive to help them reach their full potential. We include lots fun intervention sessions that our children look forward to each week. We’ve certainly found that by tackling these small steps it leads to huge strides forward in our learning. Here’s a little insight into some of them…
Learning through Lexia is great fun. The children love following the computer based programme to grasp and practise key reading skills. What’s even better is that they get to do it three times a week with our fantastic team of teaching assistants. The children love to share their achievements with their class teachers who continue their Lexia learning in the classroom too. We get great pride from seeing how they progress through the different levels and their reactions when they experience success as their learning moves on. What a great start to develop that love of reading and books!
3rd Space Maths is a fantastic way of cementing those key foundations in maths. Not only do groups of children get to work on specially created lessons directed by their teacher, they get them delivered by a 1:1 tutor online in our computer suite. All those tricky areas of maths can be tackled together – after all, a problem shared is a problem halved! It’s amazing to see abilities develop and confidence soar.