his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

I’m always rather wary of statistics.

We know Manchester City beat Leicester City 2-0.  But how well did the Foxes play?  In this Budget week, will £2.8bn over the next three years save the NHS? I noted on Twitter this week that “teenagers who read in their spare time know 26% more words than those who do not”.

Schools can often become obsessed with  League tables and so Eton, St Paul’s, Winchester and as of this academic year, Wellington College, all decline academic information to newspapers on the grounds that they are “increasingly  irrelevant as they attempt to compare different qualifications.”

Below are some statistics relating to the teaching and learning of English and Maths at Stoneygate.  I am pleased with the results as they confirm something I already know i.e. that our pupils are making excellent progress and our staff are working hard to ensure that.  They do not however ‘paint a full picture’.  Assessments need to be used as a tool for teaching and learning.

When doing assessments in the first term, I am also wary that some topics have not yet been taught.  Year 2, for example have not studied geometry yet!

Pink column = National average; green column = Stoneygate Average

Year 1 English

Year 1 Maths

Year 2 English

Year 2 Maths

Year 3 English (Blue = National Average; purple = Stoneygate)

Year 3 Maths

Year 4 English

Year 4 Maths

Year 5 English

Year 5 Maths

Year 6 English

Year 6 Maths

Year 7 English

Year 7 Maths

Year 8 English

Year 8 Maths

Year 9 English

Year 9 Maths


Y9 Maths i

From Year 1 to Year 9 in almost every single section of English and Maths assessments we are ahead of the ‘national average’.

I am delighted with the findings, but not surprised.  These statistics only reinforce what I already knew….we must, however, not rest on our laurels, but continue to improve!

Stars of the week:

Year 1: Ketanndu for learning his lines for the Christmas play and learning his dance routine.

Reception: Hebe for a positive approach to her school day.

I will end this week’s blog with some cricket statistics: England have played Australia in 69 Test series, England have won 32,  Australia have won 32 and  there have been 5 draws.  England have won 18 series at home and lost 14; Australia have won 18 series at home and lost 14) doesn’t bode well for England down under!

Mr Dobson


Laterne, Laterne, Sonne Mond und Sterne


Children at the German Kinderclub have been celebrating the festival of St. Martin with self-made lanterns, a lantern procession and St. Martin’s songs. St. Martin’s day is a German and Austrian tradition celebrated each year on the 11th of November to remember St Martin, who was a friend of the children and patron of the poor. It was fun to learn the German Laterne song by heart and light up the dark afternoon with our bright songs and lanterns!

Year 2


On Friday Year 2 spent a lovely morning in Great Glen as part of our topic on ‘Our Local Area’. We looked at local features, points of interest, thought about directions and noticed road names, shops and useful signs around the village. We stopped at the Post Office to post our envelopes that we had  previously addressed. Everyone is very excited to receive their letters with a special note inside! Then we went into the Post Office to spend the £1 we had on a special treat. Everyone was very polite and well mannered, which the Post office staff commented on. We then strode down to the park , ate our treats and had a play. On the way back to school we followed a secret pathway, saw the church and practically ran up the hill to be back at school in time for our lunch!!



his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

Last week I attended a Heads’ conference in Leamington Spa.  One of the key note speakers was Elizabeth Wright.  Elizabeth represented Australia at two Paralympic Games and won three medals.  At the conference she spoke on the subject of ‘Resilience, Well being and Success’.

elizabeth wright

On the topic of well being, she challenged adults in the room (and our pupils) to write down three things for which they are grateful for every day for one week.  After repeating this exercise for seven days, “research has shown that it can reduce stress and improve happiness” for months afterwards.  Perhaps today I’d like to thank…

  1. Soldiers past and present
  2. Our imaginative and talented pupils
  3. The generosity of the Stoneygate School parents


We began the week looking at the 100th anniversary of the battle of Passchendaele.  The battle epitomised WWI.  Due to torrential rain, the British and Canadian troops found themselves fighting not only the Germans but a quagmire of stinking mud that swallowed up men, horses and tanks.


After 105 days of brutal trench warfare, the Allies finally recaptured the village of Passchendaele – but by then around a third of a million British and Allied soldiers had been killed or wounded in some of the most horrific trench warfare of the conflict.

We looked at examples of bravery, such as the fighter pilot Hardit Singh Malik.  Hardit had studied history at Oxford and played cricket for Sussex.  He flew over Passchendaele whilst in pursuit of the ‘Red Baron’.  Hardit, was unfortunately outnumbered in the skies and he was forced to crash land. There were over 400 bullet holes in his plane.  Somehow he managed to survive; he died in 1980 (with two bullets still lodged in his leg).


Hardit Singh Malik, cricketer and fighter pilot.

Some of our Year 8 pupils have done some creative English based on their knowledge of the war.


A poem written by Will (Y8)

Keeping with creativity, I would like to thank all those pupils who participated in the ‘Children in Need Spotacular Painitng’ competition- an art competition organised by our Year 9 Charity ambassadors.  It had one stipulation- the art work had to be spotty!

A spotacular effort!  Well done to all who entered.

Finally, I’d like to thank the Stoneygate parents.  I’d like to thank all of you who attended last night’s talk on ‘Stoneygate School and Secondary Education’; I’d also like to thank you for supporting our ‘Children in Need’ efforts, either through the baking or the buying of cakes.

We have currently raised over £350.

Stars of the week:

Reception: Aiden and Keira

Year 1: Zak  for Forest School; Leo for number bonds to 20.

Year 2: Georgiana for odd and even numbers; Jessica for learning her Christmas concert words; Rayyan for listening and joining in at carpet time.


Have a good weekend,

Mr Dobson


What we have covered so far in Reception

Reception have had a busy start to the year.  We have learnt about our bodies and our senses.

We used our eyes and ears during a walk around the school grounds to learn about the signs of Autumn.  To bring our walk to an end we used our sense of taste to enjoy a hot chocolate and finished off with a biscuit.


To conclude our topic on Autumn the children used their culinary skills to make individual apple crumbles using the fallen apples that we had collected on our walk.



We enjoyed a Bear Hunt at Attenborough Arboretum where we acted out the story and took part in various literacy and craft based activities.


After the half term break we learnt about the festivals of light.  We started with celebrating Diwali where we created Mendi patterns on hand templates, made diva lamps, created chalk Rangoli patterns outside and sampled some Indian foods which the children enjoyed immensely.


During the build up to bonfire night the children  made cylinder and cone rockets, rolled marbles across black paper to create a firework effect and created a collage bonfire.


Finally the children followed instructions to make a chocolate coated apple on a stick to enjoy on bonfire night.

Forest School

Our pupils from Reception to Year 3 enjoyed Forest School in the school grounds last week. In the autumn sunshine they spent time in the woods with Forest School Leader Mrs Askew.

Mrs Askew encouraged everyone to learn ‘We take care of our wood,’ ‘We take care of ourselves,’ and ‘We take care of our friends.’ Our pupils had great fun creatively enjoying our wonderful woods in many different ways. The hot chocolate also went down very well!

Our pupils will be experiencing Forest School in all the seasons and we look forward to our next session in January.