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Matt’s first BJblog post.

Dear Ben Jonson,

Can you believe it has been almost 8 weeks since schools closed for most children? What a long time it feels – longer than the summer holidays! I am thinking of you all. I hope you and your families are all healthy and happy. I have spoken to most of the children in Coral Class on the phone and generally everyone is well, but a little bored. I completely empathise with this feeling, as I am feeling it too. Having said this, thankfully the weather is very nice at the moment.

What are you doing to keep busy in lock down? Have you completed the new outdoor learning yet? If not, please do check it out! Go to the Ben Jonson Primary home page, click the BIG, YELLOW home learning link, find your year group and click ‘Outdoor Learning’ in ‘Week 7 Activities’. Getting outside is a crucial ingredient for overall health; it triggers the body’s production of vitamin D, lowers high blood pressure, helps muscles and improves brain function.

Last week I went into school on Monday and Thursday to look after the few children that are continuing to go in. It was lovely to see them all, and catch up with the adults too. We focused on making and creating. Check out the pictures and descriptions below. If you want, you could try and make similar things at home too.

On Monday, we made Paper Mache Space Helmets. This was a big project that took a couple of days. The results speak for themselves though, look how fantasy they looked at the end! If you fancy making your own, there are step-by-step instructions with pictures on the hobby craft website. Click the link below.

https://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/ideas/kids/how-to-make-a-space-helmet

On Thursday morning, we were animators with a simple Stop Motion app. The app is free to download from the Apple Store; it’s called ‘I can animate Lite’. It was a really fun activity that only requires a tablet/iPad and some plasticine. If you don’t have plasticine at home, you could use Play-Doh, toys like Lego or leaves from the outdoors. As you can see from the pictures, we also made a little studio with a large cardboard box and spare paper.

This activity needs time and a few helpers. If your family members are available (brothers and sisters are very useful), get them involved too. Give them specific roles like director, camera controller, set and props maker.

The key to this activity is patience – the more pictures you take (they are also called frames), the better your animation movie will be. The best way of demonstrating this is to download the app and have a play around with it.

For more information, have a look at the Tate Kids website. There are simple instructions and lots of great ideas. https://www.tate.org.uk/kids/make/art-technology/be-animator

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On Thursday afternoon, we finished off making board games. Guy started this with the children – I can’t take the credit for this great idea! The children thought about their favourite board games like Snakes and Ladders, Monopoly and Chess. Using these ideas are inspiration, they made their own games out of cardboard. The theme in school was all about space. Check out the pictures below to see what they came up with.

Looking forward to seeing you all soon.

Best wishes,

Matt

May 19, 2020 at 12:02 Leave a comment

World Book Day 2020

To celebrate World Book Day 2020, we took part in a range of fun activities. These included “book tasting” in class to try out new texts, making creative displays of our favourite books and holding a whole school assembly. Every child and adult brought a book to assembly and took part in a “Big Read”.

We also introduced our new Ben Jonson Reading Canon – a list of texts we would like every child to read by the time they leave primary school and is set out as a fun challenge. Can you read them all? The full Reading Canon can be downloaded now on the website.

For homework in the lead-up to the day, we asked children to create a book box or piece of artwork based on a book they enjoy. The quality of these was incredible and we celebrated a selection in assembly. Thank you parents for all your hard work helping with these and your continued support in encouraging our children to read.

From Paul

March 5, 2020 at 15:16 Leave a comment

Science Week 2020 – Food Glorious Food

Science Week 2020 has been a scrumptious, delectable success! Our theme of food has seen lots of exciting chemistry, lots of tickling taste buds and lots of fantastic scientific enquiry from both children and adults.

On Monday, Dan from the Royal Institution was back with his Explosive Food show. We saw how electricity can be passed through a gherkin, the explosive energy contained in flour, the process that our food goes through in the digestive system and we learned about how crucial the sense of smell is to tasting when we did the Woosh Test! After school, Dan did his Community Show and we were delighted to see so many parents and family members attend. We learned about the incredible power of friction, how batteries were first invented, the power of electrical generators and the magic of surface tension.

In class, children across the school have been doing some tremendously exciting science. Year 6 have been doing lots of blind tasting, where children taste food and drink without knowing what they are and rate them on how tasty they are. With the results, the children were then able to do some fantastic data analysis. Year 4 have also been creating bar charts, having studied the amount of sugar in different orange juices. Year 3 have been busy getting creative. They have created cupcakes in mugs AND ice lollies – some amazing chemistry. Every year group has been busy doing science linked to food.

Our year group parent workshops have seen a vast amount of bread created. Years 2,3,4 and 6 have all had a go at baking their own bread in a bag. It was wonderful to see the teamwork and community spirit shining through as everyone helped each other to create some very tasty loaves. We all learned about the science behind why bread dough rises, as the yeast and sugar react to form carbon dioxide which blows the dough up like a balloon. We then thought about what happens when the bread is in the oven, how the heat turns any liquid in the dough to a gas, thus further inflating the mixture. Years 4 and 6 had time to consider how balanced their diet is and how they could plan a meal plan to make it even more of a healthy mix!

We are looking forward to the next week, which will see Year 5 have a go at making their own bread and Reception and Year 1 create their own cookie decorations. Thank you to everyone who has made this Science Week another great success.

Meredith and Alex

 

 

February 14, 2020 at 15:39 Leave a comment

Gilwell trip – Day 4

Today was one of our busiest days, packed with three full activities, more new arrivals and a final night movie time with popcorn!

In the morning, children were excited to welcome Mofsina and Ruth to the lodges. Over the day they’ve enjoyed supporting groups with a range of activities.

Some of activity highlights included bullseye after bullseye in the archery and rock climbing races (including between the adults – unlucky Alex who was beaten by Anisha!).

It was fantastic to see the looks of triumph on children’s faces after conquering their fears and learning a new skill. Meanwhile, groups learned orienteering by following maps and gathering clues (despite George briefly leading his group round in circles!)

At dinner, we sat down to filling burgers with chips and salad. After eating we gave a well deserved round of applause and three cheers for the hard working kitchen staff who had kept us fuelled with such delicious food and always with a smile.

The day finished with a relaxed movie night and children brought sleeping bags to the hall. We enjoyed “The Incredibles” along with a snack of warm popcorn.

Looking forward to seeing all our families tomorrow and sharing our stories with you all!

October 10, 2019 at 23:19 1 comment

Gilwell trip – Day 3

Another unforgettable day over at Gilwell!

Day three began with beans on toast and cereal for breakfast followed by thorough room inspections. Points were added for creative, humorous and entertaining welcomes (of which there were many!) We all completed one activity in the morning as more children had the chance to defy gravity on the 3G swing and others cooked up a storm making pizzas in the forest. Lunch was a calm affair as children enjoyed a mixture of sandwiches and crisps.

After lunch, we completed another activity, climbing to dizzying heights on the climbing wall and working together to solve team building problems. As the weather held out, we took the short walk to the hill to take in the incredible view and catch up with friends from different lodges. Before heading back to the lodge, children visited the Gilwell shop, filled with unusual toys (light-up teeth?!) and spent their spending money on gifts for their families.

The evening began with sausages and mash in a rich gravy accompanied with a mixture of fresh vegetables. This was rounded off with an indulgent chocolate cake! On our return to the lodges we had the exciting surprise to find two very special guests: Monica and Muslimah from school. Children enthusiastically shared some of their experiences and gave our guests a tour.

All day, Alex had been weather-watching, hoping the clouds would clear and finally we could enjoy a campfire together. At 7pm, the news came through – the campfire was happening! Taking our places around the fire, George and Alex led a selection of classic singalongs (including “Bungalow”!) Monica ended the experience with a story about the magic of campfires. – Paul

October 10, 2019 at 00:20 1 comment

Gilwell trip – Day 2

After a good night’s sleep, both lodges woke up to a lovely breakfast of scrambled eggs on toast with lots of tasty cereal. We have had an action packed second day at Gilwell with lots of exciting activities. Shaz was amazing throwing the Tomahawks with her crazy skills, some of the year 6 children were brave enough to go 15 crates high while others conquered their fear of heights, reaching the top of the climbing wall. Lunch was amazing as we had cheese and tuna baguettes followed by delicious cookies and jam doughnuts. Mmmmmmm. After dinner we headed back to our lodges and had an evening filled with quizzes, games and a mug of hot chocolate before bedtime.

October 8, 2019 at 22:35 2 comments

Gilwell trip – Day 1

Hello everyone! It’s year 6 here!

We said our farewells at school and arrived at Gilwell safely. Excited children made their beds and had lunch before their first activity. The rain didn’t stop the children’s excitement as they threw axes, climbed walls, swung up high and much more! Dinner was delicious and all allergies were catered for so no child missed out on dessert (very important part of the day!) After a film night, the children went off to their rooms for their first night away. Will they, or won’t they sleep?!

We will be updating the blog every evening so keep checking the Ben Jonson website for stories and photos of the children having a fantastic time.

October 7, 2019 at 20:47 9 comments

Macmillan Coffee Morning

Another successful Macmillan Coffee Morning. Thank you to everyone at Ben Jonson for the marvellous contributions and kind donations all in aid of this worthy cause.

The total sum raised will be announced next Friday, but more importantly, the winner of the Bake Off (which was a baking competition between the staff) will be announced on Monday. We’re a very kind and competitive school. – Shaz

A massive thank you to Shaz who hosted this amazing event for all our staff, who not only enjoyed all these lovely treats but helped to support Shaz raising money. Curious to find out our school star baker. Watch this space!

 

September 27, 2019 at 14:40 Leave a comment

Seaside Trip 2019

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To celebrate the fantastic year we have had at Ben Jonson Primary School we went to Chalkwell beach on Thursday 11th July. This trip was to honour the hard work and support of our parents and families as well as the joy of children who attend Ben Jonson.

We would like to thank Ocean Regeneration Trust for funding this trip which allowed us to travel by coach.  This was a great opportunity for parents and staff to come together to celebrate their child’s achievement. This was our way of saying thank you to the children, parents and staff for working together as a team.

We also had the pleasure of having Lynne Roberts (Vice Chair of Governors) join us in our celebration. The day was filled with lots of fun and laughter from both adults and children all ages. We had a feast with samosas, biryani and brownies as well as lots of other delicious food items.

All families had the opportunity to build their own sandcastles and paper boats. Children then took their paper boats to the paddling pool for a boat race which was incredible to see as they were all very competitive!  It was wonderful to see everybody work together as a team.

The trip ended on a high as we surprised everyone with a medal to celebrate their hard work and achievement! We had a great time and hope to do this again next year!

– Shireena

July 15, 2019 at 15:15 Leave a comment

Summer Fair 2019

Can I thank all parents and children for spending so much money this year at the Summer Fair! There was a wonderful range of activities, food and entertainment which made for a very colourful scene.

It was great to see some of our parents contributing to food stalls and adding to the general excitement of the afternoon. We were blessed with lovely weather which made for great photos that I am sure you will all enjoy.

Thanks also to all the staff at Ben Jonson for making it such a success. Due to everybody’s contributions we made a staggering £1500  in just 1 hour!

The money raised will be spent on playground equipment for children to make sure they are having the best possible playtimes and lunchtimes. Enjoy the summer! – Charlie

Bring on Summer Fair 2020!!!

July 12, 2019 at 11:49 Leave a comment

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