Autumn Term

The start of the new school year

There is always a great deal of excitement about moving into your new class and getting to know your new teacher(s). We spend some time in the previous summer on induction, helping to get children ready for this move with the ambition that it runs smoothly for the majority of children, and ensure teachers watch out for any who need a little extra care and support with the start of the term. We always offer an optional parents evening for those parents who have any concerns on questions about the start of term.
Newbury Show Education Tent display

Our children always produce work which will go on a special dispaly in the Education Tent at the Newbury Show each September. This usually shows some of the excellent work carried out in the summer term, often as part of our Brave Days or Activity Week. Teachers piece together al the children's work into a special display at the showground, advertising our school well. The display is often also shown in school afterwards too.
Harvest

Each year we celebrate Harvest with a special church-school service. This used to be held in the school but is now so popular we hold it in St Martin's Church. The children share in the service with singing and drama, sharing some thought provoking harvest based message. For example, recently the Y5/6 children showed how a lovely pizza eaten by us includes various food items from around the world and the huge number of food miles added up in order for us to enjoy it, encouraging us to consider buying more locally produced food where possible. There is usually a collection with the funds being given to local charities providing food for those in need, typically Loose Ends in Newbury.
Bonfire Night

The Parents Association annual bonfire night and firework display is one of our fund raising highlights each year. Our firework displays now have a excellent local reputation, rivalling other local displays, and we draw a great crowd of people from the locality to enjoy hot food, drinks, the big bonfire and the outstanding firework display.
Remembrance Sunday

This annual event is always included in the school's calendar. On Remembrance Day the children always mark the two minute silence in the hall together, before some of the children take their poppy crosses to the village triangle to 'plant' them alongside others from the local community. Recently we have also added the last post being played on a bugle, by one of the ex-teachers' parents. The school ambassadors also lay a wreath as part of the short service of remembrance held in the triangle at East End on Remembrance Sunday.
St Martin's Day

11 November is St Martin's Day, and the whole school lead a celebration service in St Martin's Church. This includes a dramatic retelling of the life of St Martin with songs and acting by the whole school, and the church is usually very full for this special event. The stained glass window in St Martin's Church which shows part of his life is referred to as part of this service.
Christmas

There are many exciting events during the Christmas period and this is always an exciting time for the children.
 
We begin by exploring Advent, often with Rev Christine leading our service. The Year 6 children are usually invited to Yew Tree Garden Centre for the annual Christmas tree dig - they choose their tree, dig it up, bring it back to school and decorate it (thank you to Yew Tree Garden centre for this!). 
 
The younger children always perform a version of the Nativity to remind us of the reason why we celebrate Christmas, and the older children have sometimes also put on a performance of a Christmas themed play too (while more recently preferring to put on a summer play instead).
 
We enjoy our Christmas Dinner, to which we invite many of those who have supported the school over the previous twelve months. There is also a quieter moment when we enjoy our school Carol Service, remembering the Bible accounts of the nativity and singing carols and Christmas songs.
Off to the theatre
 
One of our exciting trips happens every Christmas - we usually visit the beautiful Watermill Theatre at Bagnor for their Christmas play. in 2016 we enjoyed an interesting version of Sleeping Beauty, with all sorts of adaptations enjoyed by the children.