We had another terrific turnout at the Chinese Workshop on Thursday with nearly 60 parents present.

There were some very thoughtful and interesting points made which the school will follow up on in the coming weeks and months.

As promised a copy of the presentation is now available –  Chinese Presentation Oct 2012

Also we were asked about iPad applications we could recommend.  Initially, please find below, a repeat of the list I posted in a previous blog post earlier this year.  In the coming weeks we will endeavor to build on this list as well as provide useful web links and other resources to help you support your child or children at home.

My thanks to the Chinese team for their presentation on Thursday and my thanks also goes to Xiaoping Wang, advisor for Chinese at ESF, for his contribution to the presentation.

I spoke to our Chinese teachers about the applications they use on the iPads, donated from the PTA, to help our children learn Chinese at school. Please note that some are generic applications that have uses across all curriculum areas.
They recommended the following applications (in no particular order);

1. ScreenChomp and  Sock Puppets – mostly for listening and speaking activities (Y1 to Y6)
2. Drawing Pad, for writing (Y1Y2)
3. WordTracer-CN as a dictionary (Y3 to Y6)
4. Notes, for writing (Y3 to Y6). An excellent app to reinforce the Chinese character writing principle (children need to follow the right stroke order to get the right characters on the handwriting mode.)
5. Pinyin (Y3 to Y6)
6.  Pleco and KTdict C-E (Chinese dictionaries)
7.  ChinesePad (writing)


Next week we welcome members from across ESF who will be visiting our school as part of the “new principal review”.  Members of the team include David Fitzgerald (ESF Primary Advisor), Pam Ryan (Director of Education), Sandra Webster (Principal of Bradbury School), Alan Howells (Principal of JCSRS), John Marwick (Primary Maths Advisor) and Jean Zhai (Head of Chinese, Kennedy School).

The children will be introduced to the members of the team at assembly on Monday and the team will be visiting classes throughout the two days of their visit (Monday and Tuesday).  As well as classroom observations the team will be talking to children about differentiation and inclusion.

The main focus, as selected by the staff, will be on the teaching and learning of maths as we have put a lot of time and effort into this in the past year and a half and we are looking forward to “showing off” our work in this area.  Obviously our specialists won’t be expected to teach maths so the review team will also be looking at our ability to cater for the diverse range of students at Peak School.

We are looking forward to the review and trust that you will join us in welcoming them to our school.


In September Annette Ainsworth, Cathy Boon and Anna Trunkfield  ran a “learning to read, learning to write” workshop for our Year 1 parents.  Like all our workshops for parents this year it was very well attended with over 50 parents in attendance.

I have also attached the presentation that Patrice Shadbolt used for her presenation on the introduction to PYP.

A reminder that we still have two workshops on offer before Mid Term.  This coming Thursday (11 October) the Chinese Team will be offering a workshop and the following week Annette Ainsworth will be offering a reading workshop for Year 2-6 parents.

Learning to read and Write Sept 2012 presentation.


 Intro to PYP Presentation



On Wednesday of this week we had Stu Lowe, who is the ESF ICT Advisor, visit our school to work with a small group of Year 5 and 6 students.  The work concentrated on showing the children how to develop their own application for either an iPad or Android device.  The children worked together on a game called “Monster Bash”.  Although they worked together on it they were able to develop their own version of the game.  I was impressed with how the group coped with the maths involved in the development of the game and just how quickly the children picked things up.  There is an immense amount of problem solving involved as well which the children obviously enjoyed.

The long term goal is for the small group to develop their own application that we will then make available on iTunes etc.  Also we envisage this group being the”experts” and providing them with an opportunity to work with other children who would like to learn how to develop their own application.