Head’s Blog – 25th January

Young Voices

Clearwell children were 21 of the 6563 children performing at Young Voices. It was an absolutely magnificent occasion. Despite it being a long day with lots of rehearsals to ensure that all of the children could come together as one choir, the children gave it their all. During the evening performance we had a number of children (and adults!) who sang and danced the night away. It was virtually impossible to keep still, especially when music evokes such emotion. At Clearwell, we value singing and the mental well being that it brings to individuals.

Beau Dermot, only 15, sang Defying Gravity and Fight Song. She was inspirational as she herself had sang at Young Voices when she was 7. What a fabulous role model for our children as she spoke about the need to believe in yourself and never give up.

Lead singer of Basement Jaxx sang Rhythm Nation and You Gotta be (strong) and exciting for a number of mums, Tony Hadley sang “True” and “Gold” and we got to join in the latter! Mrs Stirrup wasn’t sure who he was was but Mrs Griffiths and I were able to explain! Mrs Stirrup has worked tirelessly preparing the children to sing at this event. I am extremely grateful to her for this. Mrs Stirrup, together with Mrs Griffiths, accompanied the children so thank you very much for giving your time to the children and school.

Welly walk

I had the privilege of taking Oak class in welly walk this week, it was a particularly cold day so we decided to look at the buildings within Clearwell. This links with our whole school Heritage Lottery Fund project, 100 years in Clearwell. On our return, we did a shared piece of writing where the children gave me sentences and phrases and we put it all together for a short recount of our walk.

On a cold frosty morning, we went for a walk. We went to see Clearwell well. On the way to the well, we saw some water which had frozen because it was so cold.  The ice was cold, hard and crispy.  When we stood on it, it cracked and made a crunchy noise.

On the path near the well, there were rotten apples, no sign of any fresh ones!  The well was very wet but the water was not frozen.  This is because the water is flowing and it hasn’t been cold enough for a long period of time to freeze it.

As we walked through Clearwell, we were looking at the buildings and seeing what they used to be.  We saw two old post offices.  Mrs Chance was very kind and gave us old photographs of her house which used to be the post office.  We also went to the old Bethal Methodist Chapel which was built in 1862.

Finally, we walked up to the old cemetery and looked at the plaque to honour Frances Miles’ Victoria Cross that he was awarded in World War 1. Then we made our way back to school, it was freezing!

A celebration of Burns’ Night

We were so lucky to have Matthew Barrett, a Welsh Bagpipe player offer to come and play for us this morning as a warm up to his performance at a wedding at Clearwell Castle later today. We were amazed by his performance, the children asked the most amazing questions including:
⁃ How do the bagpipes work?
⁃ Do all of the pipes move?
⁃ How long has Burns’ Night been celebrated?
⁃ When and why did you start to play the bagpipes?

We had the opportunity to learn all about the bagpipes as well as getting a small insight into Robert Burns’ life. We are so grateful to the Welsh Bagpiper for giving up his time for free to share his knowledge and expertise with us.

PC Peters & Internet Safety

PC Darren Peters came in to talk to years 3 and 4 about Internet safety and online gaming. The children were asked what games they played and there were some surprises. Some games mentioned include GTA5, Fortnite, Tick tock and Redemption 2. It was pointed out to the children that all of these games have age limits that are a lot higher than 7 and 8.

PC Peters also played a game to see if the children could identify what was and wasn’t personal information. I am pleased to say that they were very good at this so our Internet safety learning has had some impact on how to stay safe online.

They talked about what makes a good, strong password. One example would be to choose 3 random words and put them together, including symbols and numbers. It is important not to have the same password for everything.

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