Welcome to West Denton Primary School (WDPS)
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Monday 22nd July 2019 (Mick MingStones, Head Teacher, WDPS)
Dear Parents, Carers, Governors and Friends of WDPS,
I cannot believe that we are starting our summer holidays.
It has been a really busy but enjoyable end to this academic year. Thank you all for your wonderful support for the WDPS Summer Fair and we appreciate the kind help of North East Ambulance Service, Northumbria Police Horses, the Fire Brigade, a face painter, the Army (assault course) and many others. It really was a lovely, community celebration and families were wowed by the activities in the WDPS Bushcraft Area, the challenges on our running and mountain bike trail and the many other exciting activities that WDPS Staff and the 'Friends' had organised. All profit goes directly into the School Fund which enriches school life for our children.
As you know at WDPS we promote healthy lives for all children and adults as we all benefit from positive time spent playing and exercising outdoors. Research shows that physical exercise is important for mental as well as physical wellbeing. Please encourage your family to spend quality time outdoors together as it is a lovely respite from screen time.
Improving Reading is a whole school focus as all children need the skills to conduct research and also to enjoy the creative pleasure of the written word. As a family enjoy reading some of the book reviews to the right of this blog. Let’s all work together to make every WDPS child a fluent and keen reader at home and at school.
Let’s work together to give our children the best support so that they achieve all that they are capable of in life.
I hope you all enjoy a fabulous summer holiday period with your loved ones.
TWO THINGS OF NOTE FOR PARENTS
1. There will be no Twilight Club on the last day of term Friday 19th July due to the school closing sharp for deep clean
2. Any uniform ordered to be delivered to school will be available to be collected at the Office between 1pm and 2pm only on Monday 2nd September, due to Staff Training.
DATES FOR THE WEEK AHEAD
School closes at 3.15pm today Friday 19th July for the Summer break, the children return to school on Tuesday 3rd September. New Reception and Nursery children return as organised with their new teachers.
We hope to open 1.00-2.00pm on the afternoon of Monday 2nd September so parents can collect uniform ordered from our supplier.
Watch stimulating learning in the WDPS family
Head Teacher's Welcome Message
Welcome to West Denton Primary School (WDPS). During your child’s time here, we hope you will come to regard the school as your school and that your family’s involvement with the school will always be positive.
We very much value your part in the education of your own child and recognise the work you have already done in teaching your child as their first educators. We want to continue to strengthen this partnership between home and school.
All children need to be highly literate in order to realise their potential in life. As a school we encourage all students to develop higher-level reading and writing skills so that they are able to learn quickly, communicate effectively and also celebrate a true passion for the written word.
WDPS students are well aware of the importance of gaining strong numeracy skills for succeeding in education and in the world of work.
Our children are motivated to learn other modern foreign languages. All Key Stage 2 children benefit from a weekly Spanish lesson.
We believe we give our children a strong start in life as we are an innovative community who have developed a range of programmes that are unique for a school.
We deliver the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) from Year 1 to Year 6 as we want our children to benefit from a combination of academic, personal and international learning. At WDPS we have created the WDPS Raising Aspirations Programme (RAP) as we believe that all children need to have positive adult role models in order to help them to achieve their full potential. This is why we invite inspirational speakers in to school to help our older children understand that hard work, perseverance and following your dreams can open up maximum choices in all aspects of life.
WDPS Life Skills Challenge Award – ‘Natural Me’ and ‘Healthy Me’ Focus
At West Denton Primary School (WDPS) we constantly strive to improve the life experiences and opportunities for all our pupils. We have invested heavily in bushcraft and cycling as modules in the unique WDPS Life Skills Challenge programme as we strive to provide a wide range of learning experiences to cater for both academic and non-academic future careers.
As Head Teacher, I have designed a Life Skills Challenge Award that I would like to offer to every child in school. Basically the focus is on “Natural Me’ and ‘Healthy Me’ with 5 award stages to each: Copper, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond Levels. Children will gain knowledge, develop key skills at their own pace and strive to gain all the awards which will collectively help them to develop holistically whilst learning to appreciate themselves and others around them.
The scheme takes children from the Foundation Stage to leaving their primary education with the knowledge and awareness to help prepare them for secondary school and life in general. Within ‘Natural Me’ challenges include: ‘Navigations Skills’ to ‘Shelter’ and ‘Fire Building and Cooking Skills’ starting with their journey to school and increasing awareness of the surrounding environment through to older pupils teaching younger pupils how to plan and cook meals.
Under ‘Healthy Me’ challenges include ‘Service to Others’, ‘Resilience’, ‘Health, Exercise and Nutrition’, ‘First Aid’, ‘Cycling’ and ‘Olympics Challenge’. This starts with awareness of others, keeping a room clean, recognising words that are negative as well as positive to others, understanding the importance of basic hygiene, nutrition and exercise in health and how to call the emergency services. At the Diamond Level older pupils teach younger ones First Aid and key concepts from one of the WDPS Resilience modules.
Life Skills Challenge (LSC)
We are very proud to have created the WDPS Life Skills Challenge programme as we believe that children need to gain the skills, attitudes and knowledge to achieve all that they can in life.
WDPS I Can Do It
WDPS First Aid
WDPS Olympics Challenge
WDPS Business Enterprise
Watch the inspiring video WDPS Cycle Tour 2015
We have invested heavily in cycling and have created the WDPS Running and Mountain Bike Trail so that all children can develop fitness and essential bike-handling skills all year round. We also undertake off-site rides building up to our Y5 and Y6 children completing multi-day cycle tours in the summer term.
At WDPS we strive to give our children the opportunity to develop useful life skills that will help them to set and achieve aspirational goals.
We have created a bespoke Bushcraft Area so that all of our children can experience nature and learning outdoors in a very special environment. The Bushcraft Area includes a tree house, a fire pit and zones created for specific skills acquisition. It is enclosed on all sides by a tall, wooden fence and it is accessed via a willow tunnel which leads to the imposing entrance doors.
In the Bushcraft Area children develop their Multiple Intelligences and self-confidence whilst learning to manage risks. When you visit our Bushcraft Area, you will hear laughter as adults and children alike develop a wide range of practical skills and acquire a broader knowledge base.
WDPS Bushcraft includes the following elements:
- Tool use, Safety and Maintenance (Vegetable peeler, billhook, loppers, bowsaw and sheath knife)
- Shelters (Tents, tarps and natural resources)
- Knots and Lashings
- Fires and Cooking (Construct different types of fire and prepare and make meals)
- Flora and Fauna
- Creative Thinking and Art (Planned into the International Primary Curriculum)
- Team Building and Group Work
The WDPS Resilience module has been created based on Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) research and embeds the WDPS Core Values as we seek to help our children develop confidence and effective communication and people skills.
Communication 1: Perception is Projection
- To recognise words which are negative and words which are positive.
- Link words to emotions.
- Everyone in school will recognise when communicating in the negative and be able to rephrase it as a positive.
- To understand body language.
Emotional Intelligence (EI), Multiple Intelligences (MI) and Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic (VAK) styles of learning
- To understand how I prefer to learn.
- To celebrate Intelligences (talents).
- To understand my own emotions and those of others .
Drama Triangle - Cause and effect
- To reflect on my behaviour and that of others.
Conflict resolution, the volcano and perceptual positions
- To see others’ view points.
- To understand what causes conflict.
- To develop strategies to resolve conflict.
Turning negatives into positives/reframing, Relax and meditate 1
- To recognise negativity.
- To develop a positive attitude.
- To adopt a healthy lifestyle through reflection.
Multiple Intelligence (MI) week
- To build and work effectively in a team.
- To achieve a shared goal.
Goal setting and motivation
- To set goals and achieve them.
Feedback as a gift
- To show value and respect for others through feedback.
Time management and organisational strategies
- Use tools and strategies to manage your life more effectively.
Communication 2: Listening with our whole bodies
- To be an active and effective listener.
Relax and meditate 2
- To be kind to yourself.
Make a positive contribution
- To think about other people’s needs.
- To improve other people’s lives.
I have been fortunate in my life, as I have benefitted from strong family support and I have also had the privilege to work in stimulating educational settings in the UK and around the world. In essence what we are creating at WDPS is the best of all that I believe is fundamental to giving our children ‘A Stepping Stone into the Future.’ Please look at the WDPS Prospectus as this gives a clear overview of our school.[link to prospectus]
We pride ourselves on being responsive to the community we serve, and the school staff strive to make WDPS a happy and successful learning environment for all children who attend the school.
We look forward to our getting to know you and your child better.
Outer West Learning Trust (OWLT)
WDPS works with other local schools for mutual benefit. The Head Teachers, staff and Governors meet together regularly to share ideas and this has helped our schools to improve learning by sharing good practice e.g. staff training for the successful Read Write Inc. initiative and many joint curriculum projects.
Now our schools propose to strengthen our working relationships by becoming Foundation schools (still Newcastle Local Authority maintained schools) and gain charitable status as the Outer West Learning Trust.
Visit the Outer West Learning Trust (OWLT) website for more information, click on the picture below.
At West Denton we believe that all children should be valued and that their achievements should be celebrated. Each Friday certificates will be awarded in each class as follows:
- Reader of the Week
- Writer of the Week
- Mathematician of the Week
- Learner of the Week
- Positive Attitude of the Week
Children will be praised by our school community at our weekly Achievers Assembly and then the children will take the certificates home for families to appreciate their success.
We believe that a ‘Work Hard and Achieve’ culture should be promoted and celebrated.
The children, staff and Governors of West Denton Primary School have discussed the Attitudes and Learner Profile we want to promote in both children and adults throughout our school community.
Promoting Democratic British Values
At WDPS we promote a respect for people of different faiths and cultural heritages. By living out our 'Core Values', children learn the importance of ‘Empathy’, ‘Respect’ and ‘Commitment’ all of which help develop a positive mindset.
We are delighted to have embedded the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) in WDPS. The goal of the IPC is for children to focus on a combination of academic, personal and international learning. We want our children to enjoy their learning; develop enquiring minds, develop the personal qualities they need to be good citizens and develop all the skills they will need in order to succeed in life.
Through a democratic process, children are elected to serve as School Councillors. In this way they become involved in the decision-making process and they ensure that the student voice is listened to and acted on in school.
WDPS Ofsted Inspection – March 2018
Overall we have been graded as a ‘Good’ school with previous inspection judgments being validated (Overall 'Good' and 'Outstanding' for Leadership and Management - December 2013).
The report reflects what is special about the WDPS community:
The senior leadership team, well-supported by middle leaders in each phase of the school, is ambitious and committed to improving the quality of education. Determined and effective leadership has ensured that the school has adapted well to the higher expectations of the national curriculum.
Teaching is well planned and adapted to meet the differing needs of pupils. Teachers have a good understanding of the standards expected of pupils and most plan and deliver challenging lessons that move pupils forward.
The school provides a rich and varied curriculum that makes a positive contribution to pupils’ academic and personal development.
Parents were keen to praise the wide variety of experiences provided beyond the school site such as residential trips, long-distance cycling events and Bushcraft sessions which they describe as motivational and character-building.
The governing body provides effective oversight of the school and their knowledge and experience ensure they are well placed to support and challenge effectively.
The school tracks the attainment of pupils carefully and provides well-targeted additional help for those who need it.
In recent years pupils have made increasingly good progress in each phase of the school.
Children make an increasingly good start in the early years. Outcomes in the Year 1 national phonics test have risen over recent years to be above national average. Last year pupils made significantly more progress than seen nationally in Reading and Mathematics across Key Stage 2. Their progress in Writing was also stronger than seen nationally.
Pupil premium is being used wisely.
Everyone feels behaviour in the school is good.
The leadership team has ensured that all safeguarding arrangements are fit for purpose. Members of staff know what to do if they have any concerns about a child’s welfare or safety.
Verbally, Her Majesty’s Inspector commented on the strong support provided by Teaching Assistants and other WDPS school staff.
So congratulations and thank you all for your positive and much-appreciated support for the WDPS community.
Many thanks to NRG Digital website designers in Sunderland.
Amazon Associates Program
West Denton Primary has joined the Amazon Associates Program.
This means if you shop on Amazon from this site using the banner below you will generate an income to help our school.
Shop on Amazon to generate income for the school use the link below.
News and Events
OWLT Facebook Page
Visit the Outer West Learning Trust Facebook page click on the picture above. Or the Twitter account at @owltrust14
What is SEND?
Special Educational Needs & Disabilities (often called ‘SEN’ or ‘SEND’) is a legal term for many people who will need extra support during their education.
What is the Local Offer?
The Local Offer is a way of letting families know the services that are available locally and how access them; from specialist social care services, transport, childcare, health and sports activities.
Click on the SEND logo above to go to the Local Offer website.
School Welfare Officer Leaflet
If only children came with an instruction manual! Unfortunately, they don't and at times we all face those difficult moments when we just want to bury our heads and hope our problems go away.
Paula Stones our School Welfare Officer can help: download a leaflet for more information click the link below. School Welfare Officer Leaflet
Stepping Stone Newspaper
Miss Croll and the newspaper club have now produced the latest edition of the Stepping Stone, West Denton Primary School's very own newspaper.
December 2016 Issue 10 is available to download by clicking on this link.
For back issues click on the link below.Stepping Stone Back Issues
Child Protection Statement
Our school recognises our moral and statutory responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of all pupils. We will endeavour to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children are respected and valued. We will be alert to the signs of abuse and maltreatment and will follow our procedures to ensure that children receive effective support, protection and justice.
Leading Parent/Carer Partnership Award
West Denton Primary School (WDPS) gained LPPA status which is the ‘Leading Parent Partnership Award’ in July 2013. As a school, we have an excellent relationship with our parents and this shone through.
West Denton Primary School would like to acknowledge the generous support of the Big Lottery Fund for the ‘Life Cycle’ project which has helped us to develop a cycling based healthy living project for our children and the wider community. An after school club and other initiatives are teaching children and their parents about safe riding, road safety, cycle maintenance and providing us with an opportunity to deliver healthy living education. This project helps develop transferable life skills, encourages participation in exercise and provides people with the knowledge needed to lead a healthy life.