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Items filtered by date: Sunday, 12 December 1999

Year 2 News

2floatingsinkingThe children in year 2 have been studying floating and sinking, and learning a lot about the Second World War. They have also been developing their netball skills and composing music.





Floating and Sinking

During the first half term year 2 pupils took part in several investigations about floating and sinking. This enabled them to discover and test which materials would be best to build their model Titanic boat.

They explored the flexibility, strength and durability of materials before making their final decisions. Within this project they were naturally inquisitive and took on research activities to gain as much information about the Titanic as they could.


ww2WWII and trip to Tiverton Museum

The children have been exploring Devon in WWII as part of their local history learning. They were lucky enough to meet a real WWII evacuee who was evacuated from Plymouth to Tiverton.

museumPupils put together questions before our trip to meet Bert at Tiverton Museum and had them answered. They tried gas masks on, sat in an air raid shelter and enjoyed workshops on rationing, the blackout, make-do and mend and evacuation.














Throughout this term pupils have developed their team-building skills as well as learning the basic netball passes, pivoting/foot work and positioning to enable them to begin playing matches.



2musicThe year 2 children have been experimenting with a variety of sounds using untuned and tuned instruments, voice, ukuleles and boomwhackers. They have worked as a class, in groups and as individuals to create and compose pieces of music. They developed skills such as listening, rhythm and using their voices expressively and creatively.




Year 3 News

gardenYear 3’s busy term has included an exciting quilting project, run by Killerton House, which also involved learning a lot about apples. The children’s joint harvest performance with year 4 was entitled the Great Broadclyst Bake Off, and they’ve have fun writing newspaper reports of a dragon sighting on the school field!

Killerton Quilting Project

The month-long quilting project run by Killerton House taught the children a range of techniques including printing, sewing and transfers, and they each produced a piece based on a harvest theme. Their work was of a very high standard, which impressed the Killerton volunteers, and was displayed alongside work from other schools at the Killerton Apple and Cider Festival in October. It is now hanging proudly in the classroom. The children loved taking part, and we are hoping that the school will be asked to participate again next year.


Trip to Killerton Orchards

As part of the quilting project, the children visited Killerton orchards to learn about harvest time, different types of apples and their uses, and how apple juice is made. They picked apples, tried using the machinery used to press them and tasted apple juice.

garden3They also saw the beehives in the orchards, and learned about how important bees are for the trees.



The annual harvest performance by years 3 and 4 was the first in the new school hall. Entitled The Great Broadclyst Bake Off, it followed the story of bread production from seed to loaf. As well as a range of songs and dances, the performance included video footage of life at a mill (produced in the studio) and the judging - by ‘Mary’ and ‘Paul’ - of bread baked by the children! Preparation for the performance involved trips to Clyston Mill to see how wheat is turned into flour, and to a Tesco bakery to watch the flour being made into bread.

Dragon sighting

The year 3 children have this term written newspaper articles about a ‘dragon sighting’ on the school field. The articles were about a wizard called Angus who was visiting, and was followed from Scotland by his dragon. The children Skyped with Angus to ask him questions about the dragon, and wrote articles to inform the residents of Broadclyst that the dragon had not been captured so they needed to be on the lookout for her. They also wrote ‘Wanted’ descriptions so that residents knew what the dragon looked like.

No further sightings of the dragon have been reported, but be aware – and call the Battersea Dragons’ Home if you see her!



Year 4 News

The children in year 4 have enjoyed a variety of studies with an international aspect as well as joining year 3 in the Great Broadclyst Bake Off!


Axe Valley Education Park

The children have recently been studying Flight, both in nature and man-made machines. They visited Axe Valley Education Park to see a variety of birds in their habitats and learn more about migratory birds, including the Demoiselle Crane which flies over the Himalayas during its migration!

yr4-3They had a brilliant day learning about different species of birds and following clues to find various species around the park. They have also been learning about different animal classifications and were able to take part in a handling session, holding animals and examining the distinctions between the classes, including reptiles, mammals, arachnids and insects.



This year Mr Beevor and Miss Williams visited our link school, Bekumsa Biya, in Ethiopia and the children in Year 4 have enjoyed learning about the different culture and lifestyle of children in the partner school. They have all written letters, which were taken for children in corresponding classes in Ethiopia, and are waiting eagerly for their replies.


Whilst there, Mr Beevor and Miss Williams worked with the Ethiopian children to record their time for running 400m and distance for a standing long jump as part of our Bekumsa Biya vs Broadclyst Olympics. In the New Year the children of Year 4, 5 and 6 will be pitting themselves against the Ethiopian record-holders to see which country has the best young athletes - a great chance to run off a big Christmas dinner!! 



The annual harvest performance by years 3 and 4 was the first in the new school hall. Entitled The Great Broadclyst Bake Off, it followed the story of bread production from seed to loaf. As well as a range of songs and dances, the performance included video footage of life at a mill (produced in the studio) and the judging - by ‘Mary’ and ‘Paul’ - of bread baked by the children! Preparation for the performance involved trips to Clyston Mill to see how wheat is turned into flour, and to a Tesco bakery to watch the flour being made into bread.

Media Meets Art

Mrs Lees and Miss Farrant visited Austria to take part in the Media Meets Art inter-schools project, along with teachers from France, Finland and Denmark. During their visit they observed the use of technology in art lessons and the project is now continuing in years 3, 4 and 5.

The first part of the project focuses on the Austrian artists Gustav Klimt and Friedrich Hundertwasser; the children in years 3 and 4 have been learning about these artists in a variety of ways, including through maths, learning apps and a range of art media. IMG 0569Year 4 pupils are currently creating street scenes in the style of Hundertwasser’s interesting and unusual architecture.


In the new year, the children will be sharing their work with the school in France through Skype.



Year 5 News

gardenFrom poetry and drama to cycling and board games, year 5 children have been learning fast this term.





All pupils made great progress with bike riding skills and riding safely on the road. For some, these skills will be enhanced further in Year 6.


Mega Mondays

Pupils have really embraced Mega Mondays and so far they have explored the drama and excitement contained within Macbeth acts I and II. Through the exploration of this dramatic text, they will gain a valuable insight into the creative writing techniques used by Shakespeare and use them within their own work.



The children have really enjoyed writing their own poetry this term, inspired by Michael Rosen’s poem Chocolate Cake. A lot of the results were filmed as Performance Poems and they are available to watch on BTV. You will need to be logged into Clickview to view these poetry performances.

Board games

Year 5 children have been creating board games to play with their families during the Christmas break. They have designed the rules and built the dice, the board and any other pieces required. They are looking forward to playing some of these on the last day of term.



A mysterious green egg was found at school at the start of the year and Mr Hakes went missing about half-way through the term! He couldn’t really explain what had happened to him, although the word ‘Pug’ seemed to elicit a strange response from one member of staff…



Year 6 News

trip4A huge amount of activity in year 6 has included a visit to Dartmoor, participating in the Global Enterprise Challenge, filming nature documentaries and developing musical talents for the Christmas Carol concert.




trip2Dartmoor Training Centre

The year 6 children recently visited Dartmoor Training Centre, at Prince’s Hall, and took part in activities including orienteering, caving and moorland walking. It was a great time to bond as a year group, having meals together and playing games in the evenings.


Lebanon Skype CallGlobal Enterprise Challenge

The GEC is now in its second year, with schools across 21 different countries taking part. The quality of work has been high, with a focus on making premium products. Students have been using Skype to contact each other and this term, year 6 pupils have held meetings with their opposite numbers in Spain and, more recently, with Lebanon. The children have enjoyed sharing ideas and learning about different cultures. Children have also used Outlook and Yammer to collaborate, across the globe, posting pictures and ideas and receiving feedback.


So far the children have filmed attention-grabbing adverts, ranging from comedy to issues such as the environment and fair trade. They have also created prototype products, with an emphasis on premium quality. They are conducting market research, which will be used for pricing and style choices - the school Christmas Fayre was particularly useful for research.

They are excited about their Dragon’s Den presentations, in which they secure start-up funding from the ‘dragons’ (Mr Bishop, Mr James and Mrs Rothery).


The Enchanted Kingdom: Extreme Animals project

Inspired by the BBC Earth nature film Enchanted Kingdom, the students research and become experts on an ‘extreme animal’. They have used Microsoft Sway to create eBooks and portfolios of work on their chosen animal, and they are also filming ‘Attenborough-style’ documentaries on the green-screen in the studio.





Christmas Carol Concert

This year’s Christmas carol concert has a distinctly sci-fi flavour, with a Doctor Who theme. The singing, in rehearsal, has been excellent and we have also had the opportunity to showcase the musical talents of individuals within the class, both instrumental and singing.




Reception News

Sophie name writingEthan name writingThe reception children settled in well during the first few weeks of the new term. The All About Me topic allowed them to learn more about themselves, their families, their likes and dislikes, and they carried out their first art project, drawing self-portraits.



animalsnakeLight and Dark

In this new topic, the children learnt about the differences between night and day, and nocturnal animals. They saw some real-life nocturnal animals during a visit from Axe Valley Zoo, including an armadillo, a polecat, some giant stick insects and a snake - they even got to touch and hold them!

Firework picTabitha firework picHalloween

For Halloween, the children carved their own pumpkins and used the delicious flesh to make spiced pumpkin muffins. They wrote their own instructions to follow whilst they were in the cooking room, which they thoroughly enjoyed! They also learnt the story Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson and used this to sequence the story, make their own magic potions and carry out a science experiment in a cauldron using bicarbonate of soda and vinegar. They liked it when it exploded just like a real spell!


The children learnt about the festival of light for Diwali, including an Indian dance and all about traditional Indian culture. They made paper lanterns and traditional Diwali sweets called Badam Barfi, which they took home as gifts.


The children have learnt about the history of toys and toys from other countries. They were even lucky enough to explore some Victorian toys from a museum. They have planned, designed and made their own toys and have had lots of fun playing with them. As part of the topic, Mrs Brooks has taught them all a number of different dancing styles through the story of the Nutcracker.

Road Safety Week

Road Safety Week taught everyone about how to stay safe on the road and the children designed their own road safety posters for all the school to see. A very kind parent lent her road safety equipment including high-vis jackets, a giant zebra crossing, lollipop lady sticks and road signs. The class re-enacted how to stay safe whilst crossing the road and thought of some top tips to help teach the Nursery about the importance of keeping safe


Chess Tournament

Congratulations to the BCPS Chess Team! In a hard fought competition, they came second in the under-9 team event and third in the under-11s. Special congratulations go to Esther for winning the Under-9 Girls trophy! The whole team played to a great standard with some great debut performances. We are looking forward to competing in the Delancey National Schools Championship and also running our own ‘BCPS Open’ in the new year.


Cross Country

40 Children from Year 3 & 4 competed in a cross country competition at Killerton this afternoon. They ran 1500m against another 160 pupils from schools around Exeter and all finished in brilliant times. Special congratulations to Harriet who came in 1st to take the Gold Medal in the girls race and Joel who came 7th in the boys race!

We now wait for the whole school results to see which schools participants had the fastest average time! Check back to... see the results of that in the coming weeks.

Well done to all the children who raced today, you competed fantastically!


Headteacher Update Magazine

Broadclyst Community Primary School recently hosted Decoding the Future, an event focused on the role of technology to deliver a modern curriculum to prepare pupils for their future lives. Laura McPhee was there

Recently we have seen growing speculation and scepticism in the national press on the use of technology in the classroom.

The chief inspector of schools, Sir Michael Wilshaw, has expressed concern over the use of mobile phones, while behaviour expert Tom Bennett has been commissioned by the Department for Education (DfE) to lead a review into tackling poor behaviour in the classroom, focusing on the potentially disruptive influence of SmartPhones on learning in school.

But what does the research say? And how are schools innovatively using technology to promote learning?

In the OECD’s latest report on education, its director for education and skills, Andreas Schleicher, suggests that: “It is vital that teachers become active agents for change, not just in implementing technological innovations, but in designing them too.”

Broadclyst Community Primary School in Exeter is among those leading the way in this challenge. Broadclyst, rated outstanding by Ofsted, was founded in 1810 to serve children within the local community. One of the first five primary schools in the country to become an academy (in September 2010), it has developed a national and international reputation for its innovative use of IT and digital media, offering its 450 pupils one-to-one access to computers and a range of technologies.

Acknowledged by the schools minister as being in the top 250 schools in the UK for pupil achievement and progress, Broadclyst was selected by the National College for Teaching and Leadership to become a national Teaching School in 2014.

As a National Leader of Education, headteacher Jonathan Bishop is dedicated to sharing best practice and the Cornerstone Teaching School Alliance held its first conference at Broadclyst in September. Entitled, Decoding the Future, the event examined the application of technology in the classroom and what this means for today’s learners.
Anthony Salcito, vice-president of Microsoft Education, was the first keynote speaker of the day, challenging the audience to “Expect more, do more, be more”.

He explained: “When learners find themselves in troubling environments they don’t expect limitless horizons. As practitioners we have a responsibility to globally raise expectations.

“However this global expectation and power to change the future ... starts from within. It starts with our own expectations and exists in spite of any cynicism about school systems or infrastructure.

“Do more ... create curiosity and connections beyond the immediate school community. Root your actions in the notion that we can help pupils to be more.”

Mr Salcito urged leaders to foster employability through developing a skills-based curriculum rather than an exclusively content-based curriculum, and suggested technology as a tool to facilitate this exciting curriculum.

The next keynote speaker was Mr Bishop himself, who told the conference: “Sustainability in school leadership has been achieved, not through chasing SAT results, but through seizing the opportunity to explore the curriculum freedoms available.”

As a result, Broadclyst has adopted a number of new practices and reviewed procedures including:

  • Embraced curriculum freedoms.
  • Embedded use of distance learning technology.
  • Revised assessment practice.
  • Developed self-reflective and collaborative practice.
  • Created partnerships and became outward-facing.

Mr Bishop and his team endeavoured to create not just a virtual school, but a digital learning environment. He continued: “At the heart of this mission was the desire to develop creative thinkers and avid problem-solvers. If children can’t see purpose in what they are doing it leads to underachievement.”

Ambitious about the way in which real distance learning can transform critical-thinking, Mr Bishop is keen to stress that the role of the teacher is one of mediator and facilitator. Perhaps one of the most striking examples of this is the Global Enterprise Project.

Broadclyst has run a business enterprise project with its year 6 pupils for eight years. Motivational for the children and exciting for teachers to deliver, the enterprise project incorporates business skills including product design, market research, manufacturing and marketing.

The project successfully encompasses many different elements of the curriculum while offering a real-life context and purpose to the children’s learning.

Mr Bishop took the Broadclyst enterprise project concept to a global level during the recent Microsoft in Education Global Forum. In a Dragon’s Den style pitch against ideas from schools around the world, he put forward the idea of taking the existing project and transforming it into a Global Enterprise Challenge. This was the winning pitch and Broadclyst was awarded $25,000 to turn the plan into a reality.

During the challenge, 32 schools across 20 countries connected to run international companies, each with 10 regional office/teams. Each company was awarded £30 ($50) per school. The teams then competed with each other to become the most successful company globally.

This extraordinary challenge connects schools, uniting children from across the world into one global education project. Mr Bishop explains that as a result of taking part, pupils have increased awareness of cultural diversities and have gained an understanding of world currencies, as well as honing their entrepreneurial skills and economic awareness.

He added: “Through this creative way of working that was supported with technology, the children’s communication and collaboration skills and problem-solving skills improved.”

So, how does this application of technology support attainment and progress at Broadclyst? This year, the school won two SSAT Educational Outcomes Awards for the outstanding progress and attainment made by its pupils. The awards recognises pupil achievement in the top 10 per cent of primary schools nationally for value-added, and in the top 10 per cent for attainment.

Equally passionate about technology for teachers, and the professional development opportunities that this offers, Mr Bishop explains how video technology allows for deeper self-reflection. Advocates of the technology agree that the benefits of this way of working include:

  • Self-observation – with video you can observe your own lessons for a deeper level of self-reflection and you can refer back to these at any time.
  • Time for peer observation – filming your lessons will help you to make time for peer observation, helping you and your colleagues to share practice more regularly.
  • Increases authenticity – the dynamic of the class won’t be altered by the presence of an in-class observer.
  • Discussions based on real events – the ability to see what actually happened in the lesson rather than relying on recollection or potentially conflicting accounts.

Dr John Stephens joined delegates as the penultimate keynote speaker and welcomed the debate initiated by Tom Bennett and the DfE.

Dr Stephens joined the National College as director for school improvement in February 2012, and is now leading on Teaching Schools and system leadership in the new National College for Teaching and Leadership.
Inspired by developments in technology, Dr Stephens encouraged leaders to adopt a fresh perspective, quoting Proust as he explained that “the real voyage of discovery consists not of seeing new landscapes but in having new eyes”. Perhaps sometimes what is required is not always new technology or pedagogical approaches, but to look at our existing landscape through a new lens.

A clear strategy was laid down by Sir David Carter in the final speech of the day. The Regional Schools Commissioner for the South West outlined a plan for schools locally aspiring to a world-class education system in which there would be an increasing role for multi-academy trusts and free schools.

Sir David emphasised that a supportive network of schools will help to raise standards nationally, irrespective of their governance structure.

What can we learn from our colleagues and what are the recommendations? There is consensus that technology is not a substitute for poor teaching, but it can support the development of quality first teaching.

Innovation requires us to marry the accuracy and precision demanded from mastery of the curriculum, without dampening the tenacity that stems from creativity. Can we embrace technology using a skills-based curriculum, complemented by a content-based curriculum to develop learners with transferable skills and a global appeal?

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