Well, that’s another year over. I’m not sure how, but it is.
This year, as every year, has seen many changes and challenges come to Ovingham Middle School. Some have been amazing opportunities; some fantastic individual achievements; some impressive collective successes; some challenges sent to try us and some wonderfully funny, heartfelt, inspiring and genuine moments. All of these we have journeyed together as part of that family I have always talked about throughout this year.
This week has been particularly busy, but representative, of most family lives. I have a board at home where we fill in who is doing what and driving where with which child and when… the school diary always looks just like that. This week alone we have had Sports for All and a production of Romeo and Juliet as well as a Year 5 a trip to Gibside and a Belgium visitor here to deliver a cultural experience morning. Year 6 have visited the local park for a fun afternoon and had the amazing celebration evening. Year 7 are appointing next year’s house captains and saying goodbye to their head of year, Mr Anderson, who is leaving us to take on a Deputy Head post. Year 8…well, they are emotional! A trip to the beach on Friday and their prom will make sure there is not a dry eye in the house.
Year 8 also raised lots of money with their Fun Day on Wednesday and have been supporting the school, in their role as student leaders, as the school goes off timetable to enjoy our last week with our classes. Their success at the Sports Awards Evening, alongside every other year who have performed across many sports so well, is just part of their history in OMS they should be proud of.
Part of that history is building our future. We have a new library this year and at least 6 authors here to celebrate it and inspire us. This summer we have a new ICT room planned, doubling our capacity for ICT in school. We are continuing to invest in your children’s futures.
I cannot leave the final newsletter with saying how amazing our SAT’s results were this year – some of the highest the school have ever had. This goes hand in hand with thanking all the teachers and support staff who go, every day, that extra mile to support your children.
I am looking forward to spending time with my family over the holidays and I hope you will take time with your families to enjoy it also. I look forward to welcoming you back on 4th September.
Mr A Bennett
A huge congratulations to Connie who has come runner up in Great Northumberland’s ‘Women on the Wall’ writing competition (part of the Hexham Book Festival), and received her prize today at The Sill National Landscape Discovery Centre!
Out of nearly 400 entries, her story, which was set on Hadrian’s Wall in Roman times, was one of those chosen for the Year 5 and 6 category. Connie and her friends visited the centre this morning and met Caroline Lawrence, author of the Roman Mysteries series.
Great news! We have been officially accepted by Terracycle as a writing instruments recycling collection point. Please see the links below for more information.
We can accept :-
- Felt tips
- Mechanical Pencils
- Correction fluids
- Fountain Pens
Please bring any of these items into school and deposit them into the recycling bins that will be around. A great way to clean out those pencil cases and raise money for school!
A theatre visit for some of our Year 7 and Year 8 pupils this week was a great success. Everyone really enjoyed the performance of ‘The Play That Goes Wrong’ at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal. There was non-stop laughter for this popular award-winning comedy.
The next OMS theatre visit will be for a play with much darker and more serious subject matter. In September, Key Stage 3 pupils will have a chance to see an adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s powerful World War One novel ‘Private Peaceful’. Letters about this have been sent home and are available from the school office.
Popular children’s author Dan Smith made a return visit to OMS on 27 June. He recently did the official opening of our new library and last week he returned to give a presentation to all Year 7 and Year 8 pupils. He talked about his own life and inspirations as a writer, with some entertaining moments thrown in.
Dan Smith is the author of several action-packed adventure novels including ‘Big Game’, ‘Boy X’ and new novel ‘Below Zero’, a daring and exciting thriller. Lots of pupils bought copies of Dan’s books. This was the last of several author visits during the current school year, with other visiting writers including Chloe Daykin, Peter J Murray, Philip Ardagh and Ian McMillan.
All schools in Prudhoe came together at Prudhoe High School today as part of the Student Voice conference. They have spent the morning in groups bringing some poems to life which will be performed in Wylam next Thursday. Details to follow…
From Monday, pupils will no longer be allowed to take books out of the library. This is in order for Miss Quinn and Mrs Robson to be able to do a stocktake of all the books and make sure we have all of the books back in particularly now our collection has increased rapidly this year. Pupils can still, however, read books in the library during lunchtime; they just won’t be able to take them out.
Please can parents or carers ensure that your child returns any library books that they may have at home.
Some of our Key Stage 3 pupils have been eagerly reading new books as part of the North East Book Awards. The annual award sees five top-quality new children’s novels being shortlisted. However, the award is unusual because young readers are the judges. 23 of our Year 7 and Year 8 pupils read all the shortlisted novels, then voted for their favourites.
A large group of our young book judges also attended the awards party, held in the Centre for Life’s banqueting suite on 18 June. Five authors shared their inspirations, ideas and insights in a celebration of books, reading and creativity. This included fascinating presentations from shortlisted authors Ross Welford (‘The Thousand Year Old Boy’) and Mitch Johnson (‘Kick’). The winner was announced too: Helena Duggan’s sinister dystopian novel ‘A Place Called Perfect’.
Every participating pupil received a book voucher. At the awards party quite a few members of the OMS contingent took the opportunity to not only buy new books but also get them signed by their authors. It was an inspiring evening and we are already looking forward to next year.
On Wednesday 27th June, local children’s author Dan Smith will be coming into school to speak to KS3 pupils about his writing career, influences as well as his books. After the assembly, pupils will have the opportunity to purchase one of his books which Dan will also personally sign. Books are priced at £5 each.