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Welcome to the Church Blog.
 

 

 

High Ham is a Church of England Primary School and we received an

 'Outstanding' grade in our SIAS (Statutory Inspection for Anglican Schools) Inspection in January 2012.

 

The Church of England has played a central role in the provision of education in our parish since the sixteenth century.

 This is reflected in the structure of the Governing Body as well as in our ethos and values statement.

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As part of our ethos, the Church is at the heart of our school. Our Governors have a SIAMS (Statutory Inspection for Anglican and Methodists Schools) committee who regularly review our current practice and suggest improvements. The blog below is added to by all members of the committee on a regular basis and forms an important part of our monitoring systems. On this web page we have included some examples of the work which we think exemplifies our chuch school status.

Photographic evidence: We keep a church blog on the school website which includes a record of activities as well as some photos. Our daily twitter feed also contains photographic evidence of all we do including weekly awards which are given out in our Praise Collective Worship at the start of each week. If you would like to see a sample of these tweets, please open this link: Twitter feed examples for Church School page of the website.pdfTwitter feed examples for Church School page of the website.pdf 
 
Religious Education: Our Religious Education is delivered through the Somerset Agreed Syllabus ‘Awareness, Mystery, Value’. This is a slideshow which demonstrates some of the RE work throughout the school. In addition we have added a wider sample of work that the children have completed in each individual year group - this information has been taken from a variety of books - click each year group to view: Reception, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6. Teachers use the Somerset Agreed Syllabus which they annotate according to the needs of their class - click to view an example of planning for each year group:Rec RE.pdfRec RE.pdf Y1 RE.pdfY1 RE.pdf Y2 RE.pdfY2 RE.pdf Y3 RE.pdfY3 RE.pdfY4 RE.pdfY4 RE.pdf Y5 RE.pdfY5 RE.pdfY6 RE.pdfY6 RE.pdf

Topic Work: Throughout the year we complete many different projects. Here are some links to the work that the children produced when the topic was Churches - they could demonstrate their own learning strengths and come up with whatever they wanted. We held a parent topic afternoon, so all work could be viewed and the Governors presented awards to the children they felt had shown both imagination and creativity.
Click each year group to view a sample of the work they brought in: Reception, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6.

Classroom Displays: Across the school you will see a number of Christian signs and symbols as well as displays related to RE work or linked to Collective Worship. A short collection of images has been put together to demonstrate the evidence you might see when walking around the school.

Collective Worship: Each day we have an act of Collective Worship with a variety of themes during the week. Our general routine is to begin the week with whole school worship led by the Head where pupil's individual skills and talents are celebrated and trophies/awards are given out. The quote of the week is introduced and a copy given to each class. This offers staff an opportunity to reflect on and discuss the quote at a level appropriate to the age of the children in their class. Tuesday and Wednesday Collective Worship offers the opportunity for both whole school as well as Key Stage worship which enables specific themes to be taught at an age appropriate level. On Thursday Rev. Jess Pitman leads Collective Worship and offers the whole school community time to reflect and pause for thought. The week ends with class Collective Worship where the class teacher reflects on the weekly theme and expands on areas of interest raised by the children. We have a flexible approach towards planning for Collective Worship as often we are able to invite other members of the community to lead our worship and therefore we alter the timetable and update it on a weekly basis. Our school worship reflects the principles of our values and ethos statement 'Together, we care, share and learn'. Here are some recent examples: Thought for the week examples.pdfThought for the week examples.pdf Twitter feed examples for Church School page of the website.pdfTwitter feed examples for Church School page of the website.pdf We also encourage the children to evaluate the effectiveness of Collective Worship to enable us to make improvements and meet their needs. Click this link to read some recent examples of their evaluations. We have also started to record some comments from children and have added these to tweets.

Copies of Policies: We have a Religious Education and Collective Worship Policy which is updated on a regular basis. RE Policy 2017.pdfRE Policy 2017.pdf Collective Worship Policy 2017.pdfCollective Worship Policy 2017.pdf
 

School Evaluation Partner: Each Somerset Primary School receives a termly visit from the Local Authority. On a recent visit our School Evaluation Partner wrote in their report -

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Church Blog: Our Governors regularly write in our blog. The Diocese Governors, Sally Roy and Sir William Young, along with Rev. Jess Pitman and a class teacher form a SIAMS committee who meet each term to review current activities and plan for new events and update polices.

January 16
Plough Sunday

​Sunday 14th January was Plough Sunday this year, the day the farming year starts, when the church celebrates our land, farms and the people involved in every aspect of farming and food production. It was wonderful to see how many children from our school were in church on Sunday, along with their parents, to participate in this lovely service. The children read parts of the service truly beautifully - clear diction, every word audible and obvious understanding of what they were reading. They also helped with the collection and sang along. It says a lot for our school that our children have both the ability and confidence to read so well in a public place - well done everyone and thank you.

December 16
Carol Service

​We had the end of term carol service for the whole school on Friday afternoon, incorporating the school choir, favourite carols, readings by the staff, and last, but by no means least, the nativity story enacted by the chldren in Reception. It was a lovely way to come together with parents, families and friends to start the Christmas celebrations.

December 16
Christmas workshops

​On Friday 15th, some of our youngest  and some of our oldest children spent the morning in church exploring the Christmas story. Reverend Jess had brought a huge number of crib figures, cardbard boxes and wood shavings as well as art supplies galore. The workshops started with Jess telllng the story of Christmas using a picture book which was to form an integral part of the Christmas carol service in the afternoon. The children then gathered round the crib - they were pretty quick to notice that neither Baby Jesus or the Magi had arrived and we talked about the reason for this. They were then divided into groups to set up their own cribs - wood shavings were scattered, the three kings tramped from the altar down the aisle, sheep guarded stable entrances as imginations kicked in and they made the story their own. It was truly learning through play and a wonderful way for these, by now, tired children to unwind in the spirit of Christmas.

November 30
St Andrew's Patronal Festival

​Our first Patronal Festival Service with the school.  Years 5 and 6 joined members of the congregation to celebrate St Andrew's Day.  Children enjoyed a different style of service and really enjoyed sharing the peace.  Parents also did particularly well, when they sang in parts with the children for Sing Hosanna.  And a new 'old' hymn was sung as is the tradition on St Andrew's Day and children and parents alike rapidly grasped the tune and joined in for the last verses. 

November 13
Remembrance Sunday

​The school choir made a wonderful contribution to the success of the Remembrance Sunday service in St Andrew's church, High Ham. Their part in the service was important, and they read and sang beautifully. They started the service with When the Lousy War is Over, a World War I classic, read some of the most evocative lines from World War I writing and marched out at the end singing It's a Long Way to Tipperary. Such occasions are valuable in showing them what it means to be part of a wider community and it was remarkable how many of the congregation commented favourably on their singing and general behaviour.​

October 13
Harvest Festival

​The whole school attended Harvest Festival on the afternoon of Friday 13th. It was wonderful to welcome so many 'new' parents for the first time, who had come to celebrate their children's first school service, They were able to see their children receive their Bibles, given to all new children at the start of their time at High Ham. These services really give the wider community a chance to see what the school achieves and it is always a huge plesure to welcome everyone. It was a lovely service - straightforward and full of joy, somethig every child could participate in and enjoy.

October 13
Harvest Workshops

Year 4, 5 and 6 came to church this morning for Harvest workshops. Rev Jess used the occasion to teach them that, far from being a relatively new idea, harvest was actually celebrated in biblical times, when it was known as the feast of Succoth. Jewish peple still celebrate this today, which gave us a chance to link in another of the great monotheistic religions to our teaching. The children built their own booths, the temporary structures used in the Jewish faith for the 7-day period of Succoth, and they were wondrous to behold! We also learnt a song to help us rejoice and used cards to write down the things in our lives that we celebrate and for which we are thankful.

June 05
Ascension Day Service

​The format for our Ascension Day service was a bit different his year, though many of the traditions were still very much there. The SIAMs governors felt it would be an ideal time for our Year 6 leavers to remember their time at High Ham and a good occasion to present them with their leaving Bibles - just as they had received their first school Bibles in church when they first joined the school. So, aftet the whole school had presented their traditional posies and Reverend Jess had led the prayers, the Year 6 leavers came up to receive their Bibles from Mrs Roy and Sir Billy. This, sadly, was the final time Sir Billy officially participated in a service (he'll be back for the balloon next year, don't worry!) and we had a few surprises for him. On behalf of the governing Body, Mr Palmer presented him with a barometer, and he also received a leaver's Bible and his very own High Ham drinking bottle pen and pencil, as well as some wonderful cards made by the children, while Mrs Balai feted him with a poem. We were extremely pleased to welcome Mr David Williams from the Bath and Wells Diocesan Board of Education, who presented Sir Billy wth a framed certificate to mark his years of service. It was a lovely occasion and service, with plenty of parents joining us and wonderfully warm atmosphere in the church. Thank you everyone!

April 19
RESURRECTION WORKSHOPS

​Our Resurrection Workshops with Years 3 and 4 took a different form, just days after Easter, we focussed on the Resurrection appearances of Jesus to his disciples and took as our shared task, learning a song, practising readings and simple actions and movement to represent the stories we had shared.  Time was short but commitment and energy high and the end result was an excellent presentation that all could hear and greatly enjoyed.  This provides a great spriingboard for us to look at more ways of ensuring the children take a lead in planning and preparing worship and I meet with Mrs Rosser to see how this can move forward next week.  Alleluia! New life springing from the telling of the Easter story.

April 19
EASTER SERVICE in CHURCH

​Staff and parents commented how moving the Easter Resurrection Service was, especially the presentation of the Resurrection appearances of Jesus to the disciples which the children offered in movement, word and song, having worked with real focus, interest and commitment in their 45 minute Workshop sessions in the Hall.  ALLELUIA! And the robins in the church proved another wonder-full sign of new life that Easter is all about.

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 About this blog

 

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Welcome to our Church Blog.

 

This page is frequently updated by our Church School Governors: Sir William Young, Mrs Sally Roy and Rev. Jess Pitman.