Welcome to Year 3 - information for Year 2 children and families joining the school in September 2021
Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, we were not able to host our open mornings for Year 2 children and parents/carers in the Autumn Term. I hope that the situation will improve in the New Year and we will be in a position to run our 'Introduction to the Junior School' evening during the Summer Term.
Since the full reopening of the school in September, I am pleased to be able to say that the children have settled back in very well. Teaching staff spent the first few weeks focusing on re-establishing routines and relationships and giving the children time to reflect on their experiences during the period of schools' closure. We set time aside for transition and PSHE activities, as well as concentrating on recapping previous learning and identifying gaps to inform future teaching. Year 2 families might like to look at our most recent School Updates, which can been viewed on this website under the 'Letters' tab. These will give you a flavour of how the school is operating under prevailing Department for Education guidelines. They will also give you an idea of the activities and events being shared across the school as we go forward.
The School Prospectus and Parent Guide can be viewed by clicking on the link below. You will find this helpful in explaining the school's aims, the structure of the school day, uniform expectations and other key information about life in Telford Junior School.
Below there is also some more specific information on:
- School uniforms.
- School meals (a little different under the current circumstances).
- Medical forms.
(You will want to refer to these nearer the time your child joins the school.)
We will look to add a virtual tour of the school shortly, so please check this page during the course of the year for updates. In the meantime, I do hope that all the Year 2 children are enjoying being back in their school and that they are enthusiastic about the learning they are undertaking.
School Prospectus and Parent Guide
Information about school uniform items can be found in the school prospectus. Please see the attachment above. To purchase school uniform items, please follow the tab on the home page of the school website.
Educaterers provides meals for our school. School meal information is found under the letters section on this website, which is updated when we receive information on new lunch menus.
Payment for Meals
We operate ParentPay for parents/carers to pay for meals and activities in school. We need to register your child with our school in order for a new user ID and password to be issued for you to pay for meals and activities. This process will take a few days when your child joins the school, but they can receive school meals while your ParentPay account is being set up.
Free School Meals
The Universal Entitlement to Free School Meals for your child stops when they move into Year 3. This means that if your child is eligible to continue to receive free school meals, you will need to apply. Please apply online at:
It is important for families to apply, since if your child is not registered with this department by the beginning of the Autumn Term, unfortunately they will not receive a free school meal when they join the Junior School.
If you think your child may be eligible for free school meals, but you are intending to provide packed lunches, it would be very beneficial to the school if you could still apply. The school receives funding based on the number of registered children eligible for free meals. The money is received in the budget allocated to the school, so we rely on this funding in order to cover all the costs associated with running the school. Thank you for your assistance in this matter.
Medicines in School
Parent Partnership Policy
The Parent Partnership Policy (below) sets out how the school aims to work in partnership with families, to support the children's education. It includes the Home-School Agreement, which the Department for Education expects all schools to draw up and share with parents/carers.
Welcome to Year 3
Have a look at the 'Welcome to Year 3' Padlet page, which the Year 3 team put together last Summer, to welcome the current cohort of Y3 children. It explains more about life in Year 3 and introduces the teachers. The school uses Padlet links to share information with parents/carers about the year group's curriculum, the activities the children are involved with and home learning.
Year 3 Curriculum
The School Curriculum page of this website explains how the school curriculum is organised and provides an overview of the the Year 3 curriculum content. The icon below provides a link to this page.
Finding Out More About Year 3 ...
You might also want to look at the Year 3 page of this website (click on the icon below). The Padlet links found on this page show the remote learning children in Year 3 have undertaken and also home learning activities set within the year group (Year 3 Padlet Page).
Current Year 3 Teaching Arrangements
Taught by Mrs. Martin-Sweet on Tuesday - Friday and Mrs. Spedding on Monday.
Taught by Miss Evans on Monday - Wednesday and Mr. Davies on Thursday - Friday.
Taught by Mrs. Shields on Monday - Thursday and by Mrs. Spedding on Friday.
Helping Your Child at School
Families joining Telford Junior School often ask staff how they can help support their child's education during these formative years. It is worth remembering the important habits nurtured during children's early years in education:
- Maintaining good sleep patterns (children between the ages of 4 and 11 are recommended to have 10 hours sleep every night).
- Attending school regularly, so that your child gets the most from their education.
- Eating healthily: a balanced diet including plenty of fruit, vegetables and starchy foods, so that your child has the nutrients they need to stay healthy.
- Eating breakfast before they come to school; children who eat breakfast have more energy, do better at school and eat healthier through the day.
Nurturing a Positive Attitude
Many commentators believe that what children bring to the classroom is as important as what they are taught in school. The belief is that your child's potential can be developed from simple, everyday attitudes and examples; that nature can be nurtured:
- Build resilience - teach your child to accept that they can improve on their first effort, to have another go and to practise their skills (initial 'failure' is a stepping-stone to success) - praise and encourage, but don't over-praise (the praise is more genuine and the child learns to appreciate that while their efforts are valued, they will not always achieve better than their peers).
- Make learning something your child enjoys doing - it is proven that 'good mood' makes children more engaged, more creative and more willing to persist with a difficult task (a positive mindset means a child is pre-programmed to succeed).
- Allow your child to follow their passion - there is a tendency to worry about things a child is less good at, rather than sharing their enthusiasm for what they enjoy doing (spending time with your child as they connect and enjoy a subject will also give you an insight into ways you can help transfer that joy to a less loved topic).
- Make academic subjects feel relevant to your child - it can be hard for a child to focus on something they cannot see as relevant to their life, or see as helpful to them in the future (find ways to demonstrate a subject's relevance, perhaps explaining how a subject such as Maths has been useful to you in your job, or involving your child in a practical application; following a map on a journey, finding words in Google Translate, or measuring quantities during a cooking activity).
- Involve games in learning to make it more fun (Albert Einstein: "Play is the highest form of research.").
- Motivate children by consequence rather than punishment - rather than threatening to take something a way, teach your child that outcomes are determined by their actions (e.g. achieving goals is rewarded - make sure those rewards are proportionate!). This approach can nurture a strong sense of motivation, which children can take with them into adult life. (N.B. Helps children to learn self-control, builds child's self-esteem and is a good example of effective ways to solve problems, nurturing a sense of cause and effect).
- Improving your child's depth of processing - show your child how to organise learning in different ways to help them process the learning and ensure it becomes lodged in their memory (e.g. learning spellings or multiplication facts in manageable 'groups', applying learning rather than simply learning by rote).
- Quality 'down-time' - plan for quality time for your child to relax and play.
- Safe and purposeful access to the internet - think about where the access takes place in the house (for younger children better for this to be in a living area, rather than isolated in their bedroom), install suitable protective tools and model the constructive applications of the internet (both for learning and for social interaction).
- Space to learn empathy - children with greater empathy tend to relate and do better in the world. Allow time for unstructured play (empathy is often learnt while 'authority' is removed, with children making decisions for themselves; children learn to consider others' opinions and learn to negotiate. Playing with different age groups is also considered helpful and something less likely to happen in today's society.
Helping with Home Learning
The school's Home Learning Policy (see below) emphasises the importance of parents/carers being directly involved in supporting home learning in the primary age group. Children naturally seek the attention of adults, and particularly that of their parents/carers. By sharing an activity with your child, you receive the goodwill derived from that need for attention and, therefore are well placed to encourage, to motivate and to guide their learning. The Home Learning Policy sets out the range of activities that teachers may set for home learning activities. It explains how these are shared with families through the year group Padlet pages. For examples of the kind of activities set, you can look at the the current year group Padlet pages via the year group pages, under the 'Curriculum' tab on the school website.
The school uses a reading scheme by Collins called the Big Cat scheme. This does not have a long history at Telford, as it was only introduced 3 years ago in response to requests from parents and teachers for a more structured approach to reading. The books are carefully levelled for even the most able readers to ensure coverage of all text types and genres that they are likely to encounter in SATs tests and in school life (including progression to Year 7).
When children read with free choice, they have a tendency to stick to similar text types (particularly fiction) and, therefore narrow their exposure to different genres, styles and authors. As the children progress through to Year 6, the focus for more able readers is no longer on reading fluency, so the children should be able to read almost all of the words within the text without difficulty. The point of the reading scheme books for these more able children is the discussion with an adult regarding the meaning of any unusual vocabulary in context, understanding why authors have used particular words or structure, delving in to the features of the text type, etc. This will support all pupils in developing a deeper understanding of how to analyze a text in preparation for the requirements of KS3 English. Below you can see an example of the kind of analysis the scheme allows older children to engage with. Similar, age appropriate comprehension activities are matched to the reading scheme books at all levels.
We also feel very strongly that children’s love of reading should be nurtured and, therefore, we have reduced the number of times that they should read from the reading scheme to three a week, to allow them plenty of time to read for pleasure as well. We are careful to ensure that pupils learning is not “capped” by the scheme, so children in the younger years can progress through the book levels at a rate that suits their ability (i.e. if a child in Year 4 is reading at Year 5 level, then they can move on to these texts).
The school has invested in Mathletics, an online Maths programme used by pupils worldwide. It engages children through interactive activities, games and challenges, which are fun and rewarding. Children are able to take some responsibility for their own learning, nurturing independence and the ability to problem-solve. Mathletics is designed by experienced Mathematicians, to support children's classroom learning. The activities match the curriculum skills and knowledge the children are being taught through the school's curriculum. The activities provide the appropriate level of challenge and are accompanied by guidance and prompts. By observing how your child is progressing through the activities, you will be able to see the areas which your child has mastered and those where they need further practice or explanation. Weekly parent-friendly reports can add to this insight. Talking through the prompts and guidance can also enable parents/carers to have a better understanding of how best to help your child.
Overview of School Developments
Following the school's Ofsted inspection in July 2019, we recognised the need to move quickly in addressing the action points identified in the report. We have been working with a school improvement officer and a Local Authority Task Group, to ensure that the quality of teaching and learning is consistently good across the school and that this is monitored and evaluated rigorously by school leaders. Below you will find an overview the school shared with the Task Group of the developments following the 2019 inspection. You can also read the letter shared by the Chair of Governors following the Task Group meeting in February. While the inspection report identified areas for improvement, which we believe we have addressed, significant strengths were also highlighted:
- Outcomes are good.
- Pupils develop a love of reading.
- The curriculum is rich, broad and balanced.
- Work to support pupils' personal development and welfare is good.
- Pupils' behaviour is good.
- Pupils say the school is a friendly and a safe place to be.
- Pupils enjoy coming to school.