Spire Junior School

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    08 Oct 2018

    Mental Health Ambassadors

    We are excited to announce that we are now a mental health awareness school. Six of our pupils took part in a training day at Chesterfield’s Proact Stadium to learn about the importance of children and young people’s mental health. Now that our children have successfully completed the training to become Anti-Stigma Mental Health Ambassadors their role within school is to spread the word about mental health.

    It is very distressing that 1 in 10 young people will experience a mental health problem and sadly 90% of those young people will experience stigma and discrimination. Stigma stops people from seeking help; it stops them living normal lives and may even result in them giving up on their hopes and dreams.

    We are extremely passionate about the Anti-Stigma campaign and we are working hard to change things for the better. We want young people who experience any mental health problems to receive support and understanding from those around them. We are aware that attitudes are formed at a young age, and through this work and the help of our Anti-Stigma Ambassadors we want to prevent young people developing negative attitudes towards people with mental health problems. We want young people to grow up knowing that it’s ok to talk about mental health and to have the confidence to do so.

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    27 Sep 2018

    Y3 Ancient Egyptian Day

    Year 3 Ancient Egyptian Day

    What an absolute joy it was to be able to teach our pupils in an inspirational way today. The whole day consisted of a number of hands on activities to develop a number of key skills such as; independent work, using ICT, drawing techniques, listening skills and team work. We set up a variety of activities for the children to have ‘taster sessions’ to learn some facts about Ancient Egypt. The activities included:

    * Entering a tomb by crawling through a tunnel to reach the inner chamber – here the children had the opportunity to read facts, look at the paintings on the tomb walls, speak to a Pharaoh and hold a question and answer session.

    * Build like an Egyptian – the children used a variety of ‘building materials’ to create a pyramid - they had a choice of using Duplo bricks, sand or biscuits.

    * Draw like an Egyptian – the children were tasked with recreating an ancient Egyptian style drawing using grids to enlarge a smaller drawing.

    * Making a cartouche – using the ancient form of writing called hieroglyphs each child used the ancient symbols to write their name on the oval shaped cartouche.

    * Using IPads – the children used QR codes to access facts about pyramids, mummification, farming, hieroglyphs and much more.

    * Mummification process – in this activity the children had to read instructions about the process an ancient Egyptian Pharaoh’s body was put through after death. The children used a small scale dummy of an Ancient Egyptian – they were able to remove the brains and internal organs then match each body part to the canopic jar as well as wrap the mummy in bandages.

    To complete the day the children were set a challenge to ‘mummify’ one of their team members in five minutes using toilet roll. This was a great end to the day which the children enjoyed. To add to the pleasure of the day our parents were invited to their first parent’s morning – we’d like to say a huge thank you for your support and participation. It was also wonderful to see so many children dressed as an Ancient Egyptian for the day. We want to thank you for taking the time and making so much effort with the children’s costumes. You helped to make your children’s learning fun and exciting.

    The year 3 team

    Mrs Cooper, Mr Davis and Mr James

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    26 Sep 2018

    Brownlee Foundation Mini-Triathlon Event


    On Wednesday 26th September, the school took 30 children (from Y4 to Y6) to Allestree Woodlands School in Derby. The children took part in the Brownlee Foundation Mini-Triathlon Event, the first time anyone at Spire has taken part (but certainly not the last, we will be back next year). Once we arrived the children were given t-shirts and swimming caps and had to go to the changing rooms and put their swimming costumes on, and place the rest of their belongings in a basket, with their trainers and t-shirt on top. The baskets were placed at the side of the swimming pool and the event began. The children had to swim 50 metres, then put on their t-shirt and trainers and run to the bike stand, where they were given a bike and had to ride 800m around the track. After riding the 800m they then finished the triathlon with a 300m sprint. It was a pleasure to see the children push themselves and do the best they could. It was also lovely to see how they encouraged each other, cheering each other over the finish line. Each child who finished received a goody bag, containing a medal, some fruit and some sweet treats.

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    24 Sep 2018

    Y6 Residential to Lea Green


    Last Wednesday, all year 6 (50 children) went to Lea Green for 2 nights / 3 days. We went because we were well-behaved and when you get into Year 6 it’s a great treat. Lea Green is close to Matlock (30 minutes away). We participated in many activities: Team Swing, Climbing Wall, Smugglers Run and many more!Now this is my story about Lea Green.

    On Wednesday morning, I arrived at school with my heavy suitcase. Next, I put it into the echoing hall. I said to myself, “This is going to be great!”

    I left my bags in the hall so I could see my Year 5 teacher (Miss Carter). I walked into her classroom and I gave her a big hug. Just then, my friend Grace walked in and joined us ( we were just in time before Elin , Hollie and Caitlin came and took over). I went back down to the hall and I looked around - it was now full. Then I announced, “How did it get so full!?”

    Just then, everyone that was still in Miss Carter’s room walked down the stairs and into the hall, then one of the teachers told us to line up in our classes. I took my suitcase over to one side of the hall and waited. I was sat next to a group of my friends. We put our suitcases at the back of the bus ready to depart. I sat next to my best friend Lacey. Calm,content,peaceful, I closely observed the acres of field ahead of me. Finally, we were there. We unloaded our bags and put them into the spare room and after that, both classes classes sat in the lounge room. This man called ‘Tall Paul’ then walked in and started talking about Lea Green.

    After Tall Paul explained what we needed to do and the safety measures, we completed the treasure hunt. My team was made up of: Grace, Lacie, Catherine and Skye. We had a list of things we needed to find and we had to write them down on a piece of paper. Our first question was how many people worked at Lea Green. The amount that worked at Lea Green was 44 including the cat Macy (Macy was a black and white cat).Then we were asked what was for dinner and what time it was served. It was sandwiches,crisps,fruit and pudding. After that,we went into the lounge and Mrs Barnett was talking about our rooms and our roommates. My roommates were Grace,Lacey,Skye,Amy,Gracie,Catherine,Crystal,Kelsie and Maisy. Grace,Lacey, Catherine and I were excited because we were in a room together however our friend Lottey was in a different room.

    Soon after we made our beds. I was stuck so Skye helped me. After Skye helped me, we did the climbing wall. Our class ran over to the climbing wall because we were so excited. Well we didn’t need to go over to the climbing wall just yet so we walked over to this shed that had all the harnesses in .Kelsie (our instructor) gave us our safety harnesses. We clipped ourself in and got the right colour helmet depending on size -mine was green. After that, we walked over to the wall where we met Tall Paul. He showed us what we needed to do, Ebony, Lottey and I got to climb with Christopher. I went first and Lottey pulled the rope. I didn’t climb all the way though (not because I wasn’t scared) it was because I couldn’t go any higher.

    By Maddison Allen

    Above is a recount by Maddison from Day 1. The next two days consisted of a stream walk and the team swing activity, evening games and more team building activities. The children really enjoyed the experience and have returned to school with excellent team skills, which they built up together during the residential, ready for the year ahead. 


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    21 Sep 2018

    Mrs Cooper wins Silver Award in Pearson Teacher of the Year Awards

    Local teacher honoured in national celebration of teaching

    2018 Pearson Teaching Award Winners announced

    Heather Cooper of Spire Junior School in Chesterfield wins a Silver Teaching Award in the category, The Award for Teacher of the Year in a Primary School

    Heather Cooper, a Year 3 teacher at Spire Junior School will be announced as a Silver winner (8 winners in each category) and will be in the running for the overall primary teacher of the year award in October. She will now have a ‘winner’s’ tea at the House of commons on the 4th of July, and attend the Awards ceremony in October.

    Selected from thousands of nominations, Heather is one of just 65 winners who will be celebrated today on 22nd June - ‘Thank A Teacher Day’, as the national Teaching Awards marks its 20th year of celebrating excellence in education. Celebrations will take place in schools and colleges across England, Wales and Northern Ireland as the prestigious Silver Pearson Teaching Awards trophies are presented to outstanding teachers, teaching assistants, headteachers and lecturers.

    The Pearson Teaching Awards are an annual celebration of exceptional teachers, founded in 1998 by Lord Puttnam to recognise the life-changing impact an inspirational teacher can have on the lives of the young people they teach.

    Heather will now join fellow Silver Award winners, along with 3 Scottish Education Award winners and 3 winners of the Professional Teaching Awards Cymru, at the 20th UK Ceremony of the Pearson Teaching Awards, a glittering ceremony held in central London on 21st October. There they will find out which of them has won one of just 12 Gold Plato Awards, the UK’s “Oscars for Teachers”.

    Heather Cooper, a Year 3 teacher at Spire Junior School will be announced as a Silver winner (8 winners in each category) and will be in the running for the overall primary teacher of the year award in October. She will now have a ‘winner’s’ tea at the House of commons on the 4th of July, and attend the Awards ceremony in October.

    The October ceremony, titled “Britain’s Classroom Heroes”, will be filmed and broadcast by the BBC as a showcase of excellence in education. Previous award presenters have included former prime ministers David Cameron and Tony Blair, acting legends Jenny Agutter, Alison Steadman and Sheila Hancock and sports and TV personalities including Shirley Ballas, Helen Glover, Brendan Cole and Nadiya Hussain.

    On this special, celebratory day, the Teaching Awards is encouraging members of the public to say “thank you” to a teacher who has made a difference in their lives. Simply go to http://www.teachingawards.com/card, fill in a form online including a personal message and the teacher will receive a Thank You card in the post for free.

    Michael Morpurgo, celebrated author and former Children’s laureate, and President of the Teaching Awards Trust, said: “The best we can do is to pass on to children all that we know and love and mean every word. I think above all else, a teacher should be a friend, and that’s not an easy thing to do when there are 35 children out there. With these awards we are shining a light on these inspirational individuals whose efforts and commitment so often go uncelebrated.”

    Rod Bristow, President of Pearson UK, said: "A huge congratulations to all those receiving a silver trophy today. They should feel extremely proud of their achievements and join an inspirational group of Teaching Award winners from the past two decades. It’s an honour for Pearson to support these Awards each year - it’s so vital to recognise and celebrate those in the teaching profession, for their commitment to education and for the impact they have on young people's lives.“

    The list of winners will be published at 5pm on Friday 22nd June

    Heather Cooper Blog – Silver Award Winner

    Heather is described by her Headteacher as “a shining example of sheer dedication and hard work – a real life 24/7 Teacher”. Her classroom is a creative environment where children have the opportunity to engage in the imaginative and compelling lessons that she creates. She brings learning to life, from building a 20 foot skeleton to help the children learn and construct a skeleton correctly, to an amazing space week, which included a photo of the school being launched into space. She does all this as well as having very high standards that she supports the children to meet. She takes every opportunity to get involved in projects that may enrich the children’s experience, such as our recent ‘night at the museum’ residential, working with the choir to participate in Young Voices, running themed days throughout the year . Heather is committed to her pupils not only for their learning but also as a carer in supporting them through the various traumas that they may come across, even after they have left her class and moved on. She encompasses everything Spire Junior stands for and is a huge part of the school.


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      Jawbones Hill
      Derby Road
      Derbyshire, S40 2EN
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