Rights Respecting Sciennes 2016-2017

Our Rights Journey Began in September 2015

Sciennes was awarded Bronze ‘Rights Committed’ in October 2015 and Level One Silver ‘Rights Aware’ in May 2016.

timelime

Sciennes Rights Respecting Timeline

Click on our Timeline to view our journey in detail.


unicef small logo 2016-2017


Comedian Patrick Monahan Leads Assembly and Daily Mile! 19.8.2016

What a wonderful start to the new session to welcome celebrated and legendary comedian Patrick Monahan to the P4-7 Assembly on Friday 19th August 2016. Patrick inspired our pupils with his sparkling tales about his own experiences of running and then joined most of the upper school for a Daily Mile run in the Meadows.

It was joyful to hear the children’s laughter in Assembly. Patrick had them in the palm of his hand in the Hall and also later in the Meadows where he led a warm up session before the run. We are so grateful to him for giving up his time to inspire our pupils to be all they can be and to Believe they can Achieve. Thank you also to former Pupil Support Assistant, Rachel Inglis, who contacted Patrick for us and joined us for the morning.

Thank you, Patrick, for inspiring us, spreading happiness and laughter and for being so gracious with your time with all the children.

Article 24

You have the right to the best health possible and to medical care and information.


Let’s Get It Right P4-7 SHANARRI Assembly 26.8.2016

Sciennes GIRFEC P4-7 Assembly 25.8.16 from Sciennes Primary School

On Friday 26th August 2016 at the P4-7 Assembly, we reminded children how all the adults at Sciennes aim to ‘Get It Right’ for their health and wellbeing using SHANARRI. We talked about ways to remember what the letters SHANARRI stand for – Safe, Healthy, Achieving, Nurtured, Active, Respected, Responsible and Included and tested some of the teachers! Some pupils prefer to write or to draw pictures or to repeat aloud to memorise things and one method we all used was to sing Hopscotch’s song about SHANARRI.

Mr Tom Scott, Active Schools Co-ordinator for James Gillespie’s High School Cluster, gave a presentation to the children about the benefits of taking part in sport and told us about all the amazing sporting clubs that are now available for booking online:

ACTIVE SCHOOLS CLUBS AT SCIENNES
https://www.joininedinburgh.org/venue/332

ACTIVE SCHOOLS CLUBS AT JAMES GILLESPIE’S HIGH SCHOOL
https://www.joininedinburgh.org/venue/271  (Click on Active Schools activities)

Ms French encouraged everyone to complete the Tesco Summer Reading Challenge at their local library by Saturday 3rd September and to let Mrs Noble know who manages to complete the challenge to read six books from their local library.

We also revisited Sciennes School Rules and how they help keep us safe. As a health promoting school, we welcome parental support in not sending in sweet treats to celebrate birthdays, partly because some of our children have allergies but also to reduce sugar intake.

Next week, we are really fortunate to have a very special visitor joining us at both P1-3 and P4-7 Assemblies. Tam Baillie, Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People, is coming to Sciennes to speak to all the children on Friday 2nd September and we are very much looking forward to welcoming him.

Article 24You have the right to the best health possible and to medical care and information.


The Right Click: P6/7 Internet Safety Matters Workshop Wednesday 31st August 6.30pm 27.8.2016

http://www.unicef.org.uk/rights-respecting-schools/training-and-support/internet-safety/

The Right Click: Internet Safety Matters Workshop
Sciennes is hosting an upper school digital safety workshop, sponsored by Unicef and BT, on Wednesday 31st August between 6.30pm and 7.30pm in the Hall. 
 
We consider ourselves extremely fortunate to receive this fully funded opportunity, part of a UK wide and very heavily subscribed Rights Respecting Schools initiative. We offered the workshop places to our P6 and P7 families via Wisepay on a first come basis and have been delighted with the response, with all 80 places quickly booked, though we are aware that some families unable to book a place have been disappointed. However, BT is also generously providing us with a ‘Train the Trainer’ session for a few members of staff to support the delivery of additional sessions ourselves in the future.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does the workshop cover?
The workshop brings together Unicef UK’s child rights expertise with BT’s technological know-how around internet safety. Two volunteers from BT will introduce activities to begin a discussion around online safety, which parents can continue with their child at home.
Together parents and children will explore:
  • the devices and apps they use to connect online
  • likes and dislikes about the internet
  • ways in which people can misuse the information shared online
  • how e-safety and internet access matter for the promotion and protection of children’s rights.
Which age groups are most suitable?
The workshops are designed for children age eight and upwards but the presentation does include a video produced by Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) which is designed for an audience of 8-11 year olds and may not be suitable for younger children.)
How many people can attend?
The organisers advised us that they aimed to be flexible with the number of people who could attend and kindly increased availability from 60 to 80 children and adults. For the workshop to run effectively, parents and their children will be able to sit together in groups of up to ten at a table.

Article 5

You have the right to be given guidance by your parents and family.

Article 17

You have the right to collect information from the media.

Article 19

You have the right to be protected from being hurt or badly treated.

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.

Article 34

You have the right to be protected from abuse.


The Children and Young People’s Commissioner in Scotland, Tam Baillie 2.9.2016

Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People, Tam Baillie
What would you wish for if you had a magic wand that could change the world?

We were honoured to welcome Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People, Tam Baillie, to speak to our children at both P1-3 and P4-7 Assemblies on Friday 2nd September 2016.

The Children and Young People’s Commissioner in Scotland’s job is to help children understand their rights and to make sure those rights are respected. His goal is to make sure all children and young people in Scotland are as safe and happy as possible.

Tam works towards his goal by:

  • listening to children and young people
  • asking people in power – like Members of the Scottish Parliament – to think about how new laws might affect children
  • helping children learn more about their rights
  • speaking out if children and young people are not getting a fair deal.

The Commissioner captivated our pupils with an engaging, child friendly explanation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. We particularly liked his use of the term ‘promises to children’ and his invitation to everyone to think of what they would change if they had a magic wand. He explained that each idea the children then shared is already a ‘promise’ made to all children across the world, contained in the UNCRC. Tam also explained his role as Commissioner and we are delighted that our children had an opportunity to meet such an inspirational leader of positive change in our country who works tirelessly to promote the rights of all children. Tam was extremely generous and gracious with his time and we hope that we can carry on his good work in ensuring all adults and children understand the UNCRC and use it to build a better society.

We also introduced pupils to the First Minister’s Reading Challenge, which launched on Thursday 1st September and features Janis Mackay, our Patron of Reading. All P4-7 pupils will soon receive their very own Reading Passport to record their reading journeys until May next year. Many of our pupils have completed the Summer Reading Challenge and Ms French reminded everyone that it closes on Sunday 3rd September, so pupils should claim their certificates and medals from their local library by that date.

Pupil Council elections will be held on Monday 12th September, with the result given on Thursday 15th September (International Day for Democracy). Mrs Sally Nowell will be Presiding Officer.

Article 42

All adults and children should know about the UNCRC.


Online Safety Advice from CYPCS 2.9.16

http://www.cypcs.org.uk/footer/online-safety

Thank you very much to P6 and P7 families who attended and engaged with our ‘Right Click‘ digital safety workshop, sponsored by Unicef and BT, on Wednesday 29th August. We are very grateful to BT volunteers Mike Brown and Karen Halliday for leading the warmly presented and interactive event and to Zoey Ayling (Unicef’s Programme Support Officer) for providing the opportunity.

Feedback was very positive and we aim to address inhouse the requests for additional sessions, for younger pupils and also a follow up parents only session.

Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People, Tam Baillie, visited Sciennes on Friday 2nd September and it is hoped families will find his team’s advice on Online Safety useful in continuing dialogue with their children.

http://www.cypcs.org.uk/footer/online-safety

Article 5

Article 17

Article 19

Article 29

Article 34


Sustaining A Culture of Reading : Roald Dahl at 100 9.9.2016

On Friday 9th September 2016 at the P4-7 Assembly we celebrated Roald Dahl’s life, work and world of pure imagination, ahead of the forthcoming celebrations to mark the centenary of his birth on 13th September.

Roald Dahl faced many challenges in his life. He would not have recognised the phrase ‘growth mindset’ but our children do, thanks to the great work of our Infant Depute Headteacher, Ms Carolyn Anstruther, and Class Teachers. Dahl’s resilience to change, his hard work and perseverance are reflected in his life story and also in his success. “I can’t do it YET!” and seeing the positives in making mistakes are attitudes we are trying to cultivate in our learners.  We listened to “Up Grow the Roses” from the Dahl screenplay for “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” with its positive messages about learning from failures and to try, try again. We also asked the children which Dahl books they have ‘not read YET’.


We are keen to encourage all Sciennes’ pupils to join their local library as we continue to promote a love of Reading in our school and at home. P4-7 teachers have signed up their classes for The First Minister’s Reading Challenge later this term and Ms Wendy French has been running her own ‘Go For Gold’ Reading Challenge in P5C since August. Eliza and Jaimee told everyone at Assembly what was involved. Pupils who read five books gain a Bronze Award, ten books brings a Silver Award and already many P5C pupils have been awarded with a Gold Medal and certificate for reading fifteen books!

We wished Happy Eid to all families celebrating and reminded everyone that MONDAY 19th SEPTEMBER is a holiday.

Pupil Council elections take place on Monday 12th September, with the results being announced on Thursday 15th September (International Day of Democracy).

Growth Mindset Song

“Up Grow The Roses” from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Every bursted bubble has a glory!
Each abysmal failure makes a point!
Every glowing path that goes astray,
Shows you how to find a better way.
So every time you stumble never grumble.
Next time you’ll bumble even less!
For up from the ashes, up from the ashes, grow the roses of success!
Grow the roses!
Grow the roses!
Grow the roses of success!
Oh yes!
Grow the roses!
Those rosy roses!
From the ashes of disaster grow the roses of success!
(spoken)Yes I know but he wants it to float. It will!
For every big mistake you make be grateful!
Here, here!
That mistake you’ll never make again!
No sir!
Every shiny dream that fades and dies,
Generates the steam for two more tries!
(Oh) There’s magic in the wake of a fiasco!
Correct!
It gives you that chance to second guess!
Oh yes!
Then up from the ashes, up from the ashes grow the roses of success!
Grow the roses!
Grow the roses!
Grow the roses of success!
Grow the roses!
Those rosy roses!
From the ashes of disaster grow the roses of success!
Disaster didn’t stymie Louis Pasteur!
No sir!
Edison took years to see the light!
Right!
Alexander Graham knew failure well; he took a lot of knocks to ring that
bell!
So when it gets distressing it’s a blessing!
Onward and upward you must press!
Yes, Yes!
Till up from the ashes, up from the ashes grow the roses of success.
Grow the ro
Grow the ro
Grow the roses!
Grow the ro
Grow the ro
Grow the roses!
Grow the roses of success!
Grow the ro
Grow the ro
Grow the roses!
Those rosy ro
Those rosy ro
Those rosy roses!
From the ashes of disaster, grow the roses of success!
Start the engines!
Success!
Batten the hatches!
Success!
Man the shrouds!
Lift the anchor!

Success!

Article 28

You have the right to learn.


Global Goals One Year On 16.9.2016

On Friday 16th September 2016 we held our first House Assemblies of the new session for P2-P7 and welcomed P2 pupils to their first ever House Assembly.In May 2016, Sciennes became a Level One “Rights Respecting School” and we have already begun our journey towards Level Two accreditation. Our journey so far has been recorded on our Rights Respecting Sciennes blog. We reminded pupils what it means to be a Rights Respecting School and that it includes being a Global Citizen. We first introduced our pupils to the United Nations’ Global Goals for Sustainable Development when they were launched last year in September 2015. By 2030 these aim to:

End extreme poverty
Fight inequality & injustice
Fix climate change

On September 25th 2015, 193 world leaders committed to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs.) One year on, we watched a rap to help us understand all the goals better.

We thought about what we have already done in school to be Global Citizens. For example, last year the whole school took part in a City of Edinburgh pilot project to raise awareness of 1 in 5 Child Poverty (SDG1), P3 led a whole school project to raise money for 9 playgrounds for Syrian refugees (SDG10), P6 took part in Gender Equality workshops (SDG5) and our ECO Group campaigns took action on Climate Change (SDG15) and promoted Sustainable Consumption (SDG12).

We watched an animation written by Sir Ken Robinson, ‘The World’s Largest Lesson Part Two’ which gave us ideas of what we might do next to help make a better world.


The World’s Largest Lesson 2016 – with thanks to Sir Ken Robinson and Emma Watson from World’s Largest Lesson on Vimeo.

Congratulations to our newly elected Pupil Council members who will be the voice of their classmates throughout the year and will also be our Rights Respecting Schools Ambassadors.

Article 29

The right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


Newly Elected Pupil Council Members and RRS Steering Group 16.9.2016

Congratulations to our newly elected Pupil Council members who will be the voice of their classmates throughout the year and will also be our Rights Respecting Schools Ambassadors. Thank you very much to our Returning Officer, Pupil Support Assistant Mrs Sally Nowell.

P2
David
Evie
Hanna

P3
Emma
Lexie
Poppy

P4
Eva
Claude
Maliki

P5
Eilidh
Ivy
Sorla

P6
James
Iseabhail
Elsie

P7
Rui
Daniel
Quinn

Article 12 The right to an opinion and for it to be listened to and taken seriously.


P7 Wider Achievement Conference 18.9.2016

Our P7 Conference is an annual whole day event of activities designed to welcome pupils to Primary Seven, set expectations for the senior stage and launch our P7 wider achievement programme.
This year our P7 Conference will feature articles of the UNCRC and rights based learning. Fresh fruit will be provided at morning break and pupils should bring a water bottle and wear clothing which will be comfortable for Dance. Pupils will be introduced to the four elements of the Silver Level Junior Award Scheme for Schools (JASS) and how to record progress through eJASS:
1. Me and My World
2. My Interests
3. Get Active, Stay Active
4. Adventure – Lagganlia and Outdoor Learning
5. eJASS – recording JASS progress online using iPads
We are delighted that Joan Alexander from JASS will be joining us in the morning. Families can help pupils decide on goals for the year in each of the elements by using this online planning tool: https://goo.gl/forms/c7AthpEkjOfjsJ4D3
(Please note that those pupils who have yet to achieve Bronze may continue at that level in P7. Pupils can work towards achieving Gold in S1 and S2 at most secondary schools. It serves as an excellent introduction to the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme for age 14+, and was designed as such.)

Article 29

The right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


Celebrating Wider Achievement in P6 and P7 18.9.2016

 Junior Award Scheme for Schools (JASS) – October until May annually

Pupils in P6 and P7 will soon be introduced to Bronze and Silver JASS.
http://www.jasschools.org.uk/

http://jassawardsciennes.blogspot.co.uk/

At Sciennes we seek to recognise and celebrate our pupils’ wider achievements as Successful Learners, Confident Individuals, Effective Contributors and Responsible Citizens.

JASS AWARDS in P6 and P7
We aim to allocate about six months to the Junior Award Scheme Scotland (JASS) awards at Bronze (P6) and Silver (P7) Levels and we include as many holidays within that time as possible – from the October holiday through to the Easter holiday – to help pupils achieve their goals. Towards the end of May and in early June, pupils will be asked to give a short 5 minute talk explaining how they have achieved either 8 (Bronze) or 12 (Silver) hours in each of the four categories: Get Active, Stay Active; Adventure; My Interests; Me and My World.  They will also update their online eJASS account with details of their activities. Certificates and badges will be issued before the end of term. JGHS offers Gold accreditation (18 hours in each category), achievable by the end of S2, and many of our former pupils have progressed to achieve a Duke of Edinburgh Award.

GET ACTIVE, STAY ACTIVE
Our pupils take part in so many sporting activities throughout the year that many can achieve the minimum hours in a few weeks! Walking, scooting and cycling to school can also count.

ADVENTURE
Most of our pupils will easily achieve the minimum 8 (Bronze) or 12 (Silver) Adventure award at Benmore or Lagganlia and those who do not attend can take part in adventurous local trips and activities that can count towards the JASS award, including hillwalking, kayaking, rollerblading, climbing, horseriding, cycling or walking trips in the outdoors.

ME AND MY INTERESTS
Any hobby or interest or skill (other than sport) such as learning about Science or History, sewing, calligraphy, learning or practising a musical instrument, reading, language learning, photography or computer programming for example, can count towards achieving the 8 (P6 Bronze) or 12 (P7 Silver) Me and My Interests award.

ME AND MY WORLD 
Me and My World Ideas:

Making a Difference to Others – in school, at home, in your community, locally, nationally, globally
Throughout the year, our pupils will have opportunities to volunteer to support local, national and global charities and campaigns: e.g. Food Bank, Fairtrade, Comic Relief, as well as taking part in school fundraising events at school such as the Christmas and Summer Fairs. Participation in these events counts towards the ‘Me and My World’ JASS award, but the award does not need to involve fundraising. Making a difference at home and in the community, by helping neighbours or gardening or clearing litter or supporting national or international campaigns can also be part of the award. Many of our pupils take part in Earth Calling after school club and might take part in local campaigns or present research about environmental issues and the Global Goals for Sustainable Development. Pupils might consider preparing and delivering a talk about a charitable or environmental organisation or deciding to give their time in some way to help others.


#globalgoalsweek Assembly 23.9.16

On Friday 23rd September 2016 at the P4-7 Assembly we reflected on the messages of Global Goals Week and how we can plan to take action together on the Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. Last year our main focus was on Goal 1 No Poverty and Goal 11 Reduced Inequalities. We also explored Goal 13 Climate Change and Goal 5 Gender Equality.

Pupils had been asked by The Children and Young People’s Commissioner for Scotland, Tam Baillie, what they would wish for if he gave them a magic wand. He explained that their wishes were ‘promises’ already in place in the UNCRC. We looked at some of the children’s suggestions and how the Global Goals for Sustainable Development can help achieve their wishes:

Each of our Pupil Groups – Pupil Council, Eco Group, JRSOs, P7 Captains and Digital Leaders – is making plans for the year and classes were encouraged to share their ideas with their Class Reps so that we can work together in school to take action.

P4 and P7 pupils Alba and Samara gave extraordinary performances on piano. Samara practises for many hours every day and Laila told us how she has worked hard to achieve so many Tae Kwon Do medals.

Mylo and Christopher confidently introduced our brand new iTeach Digital Leaders programme and explained how to get involved.

We celebrated lots of individual pupil achievements, including a recent win for P6 Team at Boroughmuir RFC and Pedal for Scotland medals for siblings Sam, Lizzy and Quinn.


CYPCS Tam Baillie Asks Pupils for Their Wishes for a Better World 24.9.2016

When Scotland’s Commissioner for Children and Young People, Tam Baillie, came to speak to our children at both P1-3 and P4-7 Assemblies on Friday 2nd September 2016 he captivated our pupils with an engaging, child friendly explanation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. We particularly liked his use of the term ‘promises to children’ and his invitation to everyone to think of what they would change if they had a magic wand.

Here are some of the children’s wishes:

Mr Baillie explained that each idea the children then shared is already a ‘promise’ made to all children across the world, contained in the UNCRC.

The Children and Young People’s Commissioner in Scotland’s job is to help children understand their rights and to make sure those rights are respected. His goal is to make sure all children and young people in Scotland are as safe and happy as possible.

Tam works towards his goal by:

  • listening to children and young people
  • asking people in power – like Members of the Scottish Parliament – to think about how new laws might affect children
  • helping children learn more about their rights
  • speaking out if children and young people are not getting a fair deal.

Tam explained his role as Commissioner and we are delighted that our children had an opportunity to meet such an inspirational leader of positive change in our country who works tirelessly to promote the rights of all children. Tam was extremely generous and gracious with his time and we hope that we can carry on his good work in ensuring all adults and children understand the UNCRC and use it to build a better society.

Article 42

All adults and children should know about the UNCRC.


Challenge Yourself! P4-7 Assembly 7.10.16

On Friday 7th October we issued the First Minister’s Reading Challenge Passports to P4, P5 and P6 and reminded pupils what is involved in the Reading Challenge. P7 pupils have already received their passports and have begun using them.One of the entries in the Reading Challenge Passport asks pupils to name their local library and librarian and we again encouraged all our pupils to join their local library. There are many free resources to pupils and families through the Library Service via the Overdrive app – eBooks, audiobooks, free Mathetics maths resources and games, language resources. Not signed up yet? A great challenge to complete in the Ocober holiday!

Ms French’s Reading Challenge continues to be a great success with many more of her pupils achieving Gold awards for reading 15 books!

We congratulated many pupils on recent achievements and enjoyed a wonderful, confident performance on guitar from Kevin, Riley, Hannah and Eloise.

Our P3 whole school led Harvest Appeal for Foodbank launches next week and the P3 teams are busy organising. A collection will be made on Friday 28th October and ties in with international charity WE Free the Children’s ‘Scare Hunger’ campaign. Free the Children will visit school in December and we are looking forward to welcoming them back again to help us with pupil led social action.

P7 will be at Lagganlia Outdoor Education Centre next week and we watched a video to help us think about how team work, belief and encouragement can help us achieve!

Class Teachers in P4-7 will inform pupils if and how their classes will celebrate Halloween this year.

Article 28

The right to learn

Article 27

The right to have a good enough standard of living.


P4-7 Foodbank WE Scare Hunger Assembly 14.10.2016

On Friday 14th October 2016 Mrs Noble led the P4-7 Assembly and told everyone about the forthcoming P3 led whole school Foodbank Appeal. Our Harvest Assembly will take place on 28th October when representatives from the North West Edinburgh Foodbank will collect donations of non perishable food items.Ms Owen was congratulated on her seconded appointment to City of Edinburgh’s 1+2 Languages team and everyone wished Ms Gaffney well as she begins her maternity leave.

Safe and happy holidays to all our families and we will welcome pupils back to school on TUESDAY 25th OCTOBER.

Article 27

The right to have a good enough standard of living.


P3 Led Foodbank Appeal WE Scare Hunger Assembly 28.10.2016

On Friday 28th October 2016, Ewan from Edinburgh Central and Northwest Foodbank thanked all the pupils and families for their tremendous generosity in donating non perishable food items in response to the P3 led whole school Harvest Assembly. Ewan explained to the pupils how their donations will make a real difference to families across Edinburgh. P3 pupils, Ms Anstruther, Mr Scott and Mr Reid helped Ewan and his team load up their van at the end of Assemblies.WE Free the Children is a charity sponsored by the Queen’s Trust that we have been working with and the P3 Appeal linked very well with their ‘WE Scare Hunger’ Halloween Foodbank campaign.

Parent Kirstin Unger contacted us to let us know about the ‘Carve A Heart‘ in a pumpkin campaign for Syria. Families wishing to take part can text HEART to 70060 to donate £3 and can use the hashtag #carveaheart to Tweet their support.


Pupils sang along to a Spanish song “Los Monstruos” suggested by Miss Stewardson and learned a new song about self belief by Will.i.am.


We were delighted to see that even more pupils have taken up the challenge of joining a library and we continue to aim for all our pupils to become members as part of the First Minister’s Reading Passport Challenge.

We shared exciting news that Google Expeditions will visit school on Wednesday 30th November with special Virtual Reality Google Goggles!

P7 will begin selling poppies to classes on Monday 31st October for the next two weeks and will accept any donations offered. (Our poppies have stickers rather than pins.) Mr Howie told everyone about white poppies and explained how money raised in our poppy appeal will help ex-service people, as well as showing that those who lost their lives in war are remembered.

Article 27

The right to have a good enough standard of living.


P3 Led Foodbank Harvest Appeal P1-3 Assembly 28.10.2016

Thank you to all our families for such generous support of the P3 led whole school Central and North West Edinburgh Foodbank Harvest Appeal. Ewan Walker (Co-founder, Trustee and Operations Manager) gave a presentation to pupils at both the P1-3 and P4-7 Assemblies on Friday 28th October 2016, explaining how the donations will make a real difference to families across Edinburgh.

P3 pupils, their teachers and Ms Carolyn Anstruther DHT are congratulated on a hugely successful project which allowed all the P3 pupils to plan, lead and organise the whole school event.

 Article 27

The right to have a good enough standard of living.


‘Changing Faces’ Anti-Bullying Workshops in P6 9.11.2016

Thank you very much to Lorna Telford from UK Charity ‘Changing Faces’ for providing thought provoking workshops to our three P6 classes on Wednesday 9th November, linked to their Class Novel study of “Wonder” by R. J. Palacio

https://www.changingfaces.org.uk/resources/education


Kid President 11.11.2016

Kid President gives advice on “How to disagree (without making people feel terrible).”


Sciennes Receives a Special Certificate from Junior Award Scheme for Schools (JASS) 10.11.2016

Joan Alexander with Cameron, Anna and Sarah

Thank you very much to Joan Alexander and all at the Junior Award Scheme for Schools (JASS) team as well as Friends of the Award (FOTA) for inviting Sciennes to the FOTA Annual General Meeting on Thursday 10th November.

P7 pupils Anna and Cameron received a special certificate on behalf of the school, in kind recognition of Sciennes’ ongoing contribution and commitment to JASS and eJASS.

Anna’s sister, Sarah, also attended with their mum, Mrs Aileen Nimmo. Thank you also to Mrs Claire Marshall for accompanying her son Cameron to the event, held in the prestigious European Room of the City Chambers. Councillor Elaine Aitken, deputising for the Lord Provost, presented our pupils with the certificate and they were also congratulated by MSP Miles Briggs.

What a wonderful celebration of volunteering, pupil-led social action and wider achievement! Many adult volunteers were recognised and celebrated for their contribution, as well as the young people they have supported in achieving both Duke of Edinburgh Awards and the Junior Award for Schools. A lovely evening and we were very proud of all three of our pupil ambassadors.

Superb P7 Sciennes’ ambassadors, proudly sporting their Bronze JASS medals and already aiming for the Silver JASS award
Councillor Elaine Aitken, deputising for the Lord Provost, presents Anna and Cameron with a special certificate for Sciennes
Thanks, mums!

21st – 25th November #iwill Week 13.11. 2016

Making social action part of life for 10-20 year-olds

The #iwill campaign promotes social action among 10-20 year-olds. This includes activities such as campaigning, fundraising and volunteering which fits very well with our P6 and P7 annual participation in the ‘Me and My World’ section of the Junior Award Scheme for Schools (an accredited learning programme for 10-14 year olds which promotes and celebrates wider achievement).

http://www.iwill.org.uk/get-involved/iwillweek-2016/

We are delighted to feature amongst a host of partner agencies from around the UK that are supporting this initiative to promote pupil-led social action.

http://www.iwill.org.uk/iwill-pledges/


‘WE Free the Children’ Returning to Sciennes! 13.11.2016

We are tremendously excited about an upcoming return visit to Sciennes on Wednesday 7th December from WE Free the Children, again arranged for us by Schools Co-ordinator Harriet Morgan.

Jacob, from WE Free the Children, visited in June to work with half of our (then P6) pupils and it was a superb and inspirational day, providing a wealth of opportunities for our children to embrace pupil leadership. Wednesday 7th December will mark a return visit from the charity, where a Speaker and Facilitator will work with the remaining half of our P7 pupils.
We are honoured to welcome Nicola Brentnall, the Director of The Queen’s Trust and Kate Likely, UK Director of Free the Children, who will join us on the day.

P6 and P7 pupils have been invited to a special assembly at 9am and then half the P7 year group will take part in Free the Children workshops throughout the day, while Ms Sellar will lead the remaining pupils in a repeat of her excellent Global Goals workshop, focusing on Gender Equality.

The format of the workshops fits ideally with our aims to develop pupil-led social action as part of the Junior Award Scheme for Schools:

Team Building/Issues Module – exploring prevalent issues in society, and globally to build confidence, identify leadership skills and also get pupils thinking about issues they care about.
Reflective Module – enabling pupils to think how they can use their skills for issues that are important to them.
Action Planning – putting pen to paper to create a tangible action plan for children to develop and put into practice.

www.we.org/gb

Free the Children

Free The Children is an international charity and educational partner that believes in a world where all young people are free to achieve their fullest potential as change-makers. Over the last 20 years, Free The Children has grown into an international movement supporting youth empowerment through educational service-learning initiatives in North America and the United Kingdom, and a holistic and sustainable international development model. It is supported by the Queen’s Trust, the UN, Virgin Atlantic and has many international supporters –  Malala, Desmond Tutu, Prince Harry, Oprah will give a flavour. Their model is ‘children helping children’ and they promote pupil leadership and taking action, here and abroad. The scheme began in Canada, initiated  by one of the CEOs when he was 12, and is a social enterprise endeavour.

For more information about Free the Children, visit their website.

The ‘Free the Children’ programme fits extremely well with our well established Junior Awards Scheme Scotland (JASS) programme in P6 and P7 where pupils are asked to take their own action to achieve a ‘Me and My World’ element. JASS is a children’s version of The Duke of Edinburgh Award, and the idea for it actually came from Sciennes! It is now adopted throughout Edinburgh and beyond so has been retitled Junior Award Scheme for Schools.

The Junior Award Scheme Schools (JASS) is an accredited learning programme, celebrating wider achievement, for young people (P6-S2). Sciennes and Tollcross Primary Schools have been implementing this scheme since we piloted it in 2009.
The concept emerged from a discussion during a Sciennes P7 visit to Lagganlia between Alice Brown, Gael Logan and Barry Hewitt who came up with the idea to set up a ‘Duke of Edinburgh’ style award scheme for upper primary pupils. The scheme has since been developed into a city wide programme.

There are three levels (bronze, silver and gold), each requiring a higher degree of commitment. Each level also includes four sections to be completed:

  • My interest – a hobby or interest
  • Get Active, Stay Active – involvement in a sport or physical activity
  • Me and My World – a community or environmental project
  • Adventure – a teamwork challenge through involvement in an outdoor activity (e.g Benmore and Lagganlia)

http://jassawardsciennes.blogspot.co.uk/

Sciennes helped develop an online version – eJASS.

Free the Children also fits well with our Unicef Rights Respecting Schools programme. We have recently achieved Level One and our next steps are to continue to extend knowledge of UNCRC and to expand global citizenship. The Free the Children programme will assist us with that. We have highlighted the relevance of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development since their launch in September 2015 and the programme also supports this extremely well.


#iwill week 25.11.2016

Celebrating #iwill Week, our three P6 Junior Road Safety Officers, Amelia, Declan and Josh, showed how they can step up to serve our school community by planning and leading a Road Safety session for Assembly. They invited all pupils in P4-7 to dress up brightly in luminous, reflective clothing and gave prizes in each class for the brightest clothing to get across their message of ‘Be Bright, Be Seen.” They performed a stunning trick using ‘Magic Thumbs’ that lit up as they ‘threw’ lights to one another. Fantastic! Many thanks to friend of Sciennes, City of Edinburgh Road Safety Officer Mark Symonds who kindly gave each of our JRSOs a high viz vest and shone torches on pupils’ clothing to re-enforce the point about being bright, day and night. Everyone was invited to think about what they could pledge to do in Active Travel to fight Climate Change.

The new P7 House and Sports Captains confidently introduced themselves and we were delighted that almost half the year group showed interest in stepping up to take on additional responsibilities, as role models and ambassadors for Sciennes. All who applied were entirely capable of taking up the posts so it was a very difficult decision but there will be lots of opportunities for all Primary Sevens to take the lead.

Our wonderful Primary Sevens have also been working hard as young entrepreneurs, using Virgin Money’s’ Make £5 Grow’ and funds loaned by the Parent Council to plan, design and create an array of exciting stalls for the Winter Fair on Saturday 26th November 12pm-3pm as part of their Silver Junior Award for Schools (JASS). A representative from each P7 group spoke at Assembly to explain and publicise their event. Loads happening tomorrow! Come and check out what they have on offer in the new Dining Hall.

P4 stars, Molly, Rosa, Joesph, Cara and Scarlet finally got to perform their fabulous dance routine with music! They wowed the audience with their moves and confidence. Great job!

P3 have been rehearsing and performing their Dance Show in the Hall recently, so there has not been an Assembly for a few weeks. Several huge achievements to celebrate within that time, including phenomenal success in Chess, P6 Amelia being chosen as overall winner in Ian Murray MP’s Christmas Card competition (from 2000 entries!) and P7 David achieving an extraordinary two gold medals in the Edinburgh and Midlothian Swimming Championships! Well done to all our high achievers who know that hard work pays off!

We hope to see everyone at the amazing International Winter Fair on Saturday. Many months of effort from Jay and Aileen in leading the Parent Council Events and Fundraising Group and an army of volunteers saying “#iwill!” are tremendously valued by the school. Come and see a Magic Show, bid in the Silent Auction, browse CDs, books and toys, take a chance with a Tombola raffle ticket and enjoy lunch and a mince pie. Just some of the many activities and events on offer! Check out the Parent Council and school websites for details.

Please also support our bids to win thousands of pounds for technology (see emails for information). Thank you very much to P2 Dad, Colin Sim, for all his efforts in submitting funding bids on our behalf and to everyone who has supported by voting. We are now Finalists in the Aviva Community Fund bid, beating hundreds of other bids, and have a 1 in 4 chance of gaining £5000! We would be very grateful for your continued support in voting for us again in the Aviva bid and also in the One Family Foundation bid.

Looking forward to all the fun of the Fair!


Sciennes’ Pupil Voices Heard by Scottish Government 30.11.2016

In June 2016, some of our pupils were invited to take part in a consultation exercise led by Children’s Parliament (based at Summerhall) on behalf of the Scottish Government. The pupils gave their views on the minimum age of criminal responsibility in Scotland; set at eight years of age with a proposal to raise it to twelve years of age.

This report outlines some of the responses from all the young people who took part in the project:

http://www.childrensparliament.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Minimum-age-of-Criminal-Responsibility-CP-Final-Report-2016.pdf

On Thursday 30th November, Early Years Minister Mark McDonald announced that the Scottish government is to introduce a bill to raise the age of criminal responsibility to 12.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-38160549

Article 12

You have the right to an opinion and for it to be listened to and taken seriously.

Article 40

You have the right to help in defending yourself if you are accused of breaking the law.


Parent Council Volunteering Meeting Monday 5th December 5.12.2016

A sub group of our Parent Council is meeting on Monday 5th December 2016 (United Nations International Volunteer Day!) 9.00am-10.00am in the Staff Room to explore ways to increase opportunities for parents to volunteer in school.

Any interested parents are very welcome to attend.


Mapping Global Goals to UNCRC 5.12.16


‘WE’ Makes A Return Visit to Sciennes 7.12.16

https://www.we.org/gb/

What a superb return visit to Sciennes on Wednesday 7th December 2016 from WE, again arranged for us by Schools Co-ordinator Harriet Morgan.

In June 2016, Jacob, a Speaker and Facilitator from WE Free the Children, worked with half of our (then P6) pupils and it was a superb and inspirational day, providing a wealth of opportunities for our children to embrace pupil leadership. Wednesday 7th December 2016 marked a welcome return visit from the charity, where two Speakers and Facilitators, Frankie and Chloe, kindly accommodated the remaining half of our P7 pupils.

We were honoured to welcome Nicola Brentnall, the Director of The Queen’s Trust and Kate Likely, UK Director of WE, who joined us on the day.

P5, P6 and P7 pupils were invited to a special assembly at 9am and then half the P7 year group took part in WE workshops throughout the day, while Ms Sellar led the remaining pupils in a repeat of her excellent Global Goals workshop, focusing on Gender Equality.

The format of the workshops fitted ideally with our aims to develop pupil-led social action as part of the Junior Award Scheme for Schools:

Team Building/Issues Module – exploring prevalent issues in society, and globally to build confidence, identify leadership skills and also get pupils thinking about issues they care about.
Reflective Module – enabling pupils to think how they can use their skills for issues that are important to them.
Action Planning – putting pen to paper to create a tangible action plan for children to develop and put into practice.

FROM ME TO WE: PUPIL LEADERSHIP WORKSHOP

What a wonderful, highly inspirational and motivational day which we are certain will have impressed the visiting VIPs, Anne, Kate and Alison, as much as it did the children and staff.

Frankie and Chloe skilfully led the children through complex issues, channeling their ideas and thoughts very effectively and giving them a strong sense of empowerment to make a difference.  We are very grateful that WE has been able to accommodate our entire year group of 97 P7 pupils who now have a shared experience that we will use not only to assist them with taking on social action themselves, but also cascading what they have learned to others in school. The feedback from the children evidenced how deeply they had thought about the issues raised and how positively they had responded to the session.

Our P5 and P6  pupils who also attended the Assembly with P7 in the morning have been equally positive and the visit was a huge help in taking forward our engagement with WE as a school.

The WE pack of learning resources is superb (which includes many UNCRC-linked , Curriculum for Excellence specific materials) and P5 pupils have already begun using the ‘WE Won’t Rest‘ Homelessness Section. We are very fortunate to have established a working relationship with this dynamic, pro-active charity, which has such a strong focus on pupils taking the lead, firmly rooted in the UNCRC and the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

Frankie’s P5-P7 Assembly – “Be the Change”
 Special visitor from The Queen’s Trust, Alison and Kate Likely, UK Director of WE
Craig Kielburger founded WE Free the Children aged 11 with his brother in Canada in 1995 and it is now an international charity and youth movement.
Iqbal Masih’s story inspired Craig Kielburger to establish WE Free the Children.
Chloe and Frankie inspired and empowered P7 to be change makers.
Getting to know you and establishing respectful interaction.
Trust exercises
Issues Pictionary
Pictionary issues included litter, hunger, dirty water, homelessness and child labour.
Great to see the classes getting on so well in mixed Pictionary Teams.
This group ‘blew Chloe’s mind’ with their great ideas for social action.
Quality co-operation in planning their campaigns.
Each Dream Team was made up of pupils from all three P7 classes.
Presenting ideas for making a difference

Global Goal 5 – Gender Equality

Ms Sellar capably led the remaining half of the group in her innovative workshops designed to familiarise pupils with the Sustainable Development Goals, and in particular Goal 5 Gender Equality.

Firstly, pupils in mixed teams from each class considered the Global Goals, decided which three were most important to them and explained why.

In the afternoon session, they were then asked to list as many jobs as they could, categorise them into male and female occupations on Post-Its and display these. Their ideas were discussed with the whole group and pupils naturally began to recognise and realise many stereotypes in their initial attitudes.

Pupils explored how phrases such a “Act like a man” and “Be ladylike” can limit people.

Ms Sellar explained how Global Goal 5, Gender Equality, is a fundamental goal in achieving the other goals and showed the pupils this thought-provoking video, “Like A Girl”:

Pupils were asked to pledge actions they will take to support gender equality.

“I pledge to let people be who they want to be.”
“I promise I’ll include everyone whatever their gender is.”
“I promise to try to make the world a better place. Even if I fail I will try again.”
“I pledge to make the Global Goals a reality.”

About WE

WE is an international charity and educational partner that believes in a world where all young people are free to achieve their fullest potential as change-makers. Over the last 20 years, WE has grown into an international movement supporting youth empowerment through educational service-learning initiatives in North America and the United Kingdom, and a holistic and sustainable international development model. It is supported by the Queen’s Trust, the UN, Virgin Atlantic and has many international supporters –  Malala, Desmond Tutu, Prince Harry, Oprah will give a flavour. Their model is ‘children helping children’ and they promote pupil leadership and taking action, here and abroad. The scheme began in Canada, initiated  by one of the CEOs when he was 12, and is a social enterprise endeavour.

For more information about WE, visit their website.

The ‘WE’ programme fits extremely well with our well established Junior Awards Scheme Scotland (JASS) programme in P6 and P7 where pupils are asked to take their own action to achieve a ‘Me and My World’ element. JASS is a children’s version of The Duke of Edinburgh Award, and the idea for it actually came from Sciennes! It is now adopted throughout Edinburgh and beyond so has been retitled Junior Award Scheme for Schools.

The Junior Award Scheme Schools (JASS) is an accredited learning programme, celebrating wider achievement, for young people (P6-S2). Sciennes and Tollcross Primary Schools have been implementing this scheme since we piloted it in 2009.
The concept emerged from a discussion during a Sciennes P7 visit to Lagganlia between Alice Brown, Gael Logan and Barry Hewitt who came up with the idea to set up a ‘Duke of Edinburgh’ style award scheme for upper primary pupils. The scheme has since been developed into a city wide programme.

There are three levels (bronze, silver and gold), each requiring a higher degree of commitment. Each level also includes four sections to be completed:

  • My interest – a hobby or interest
  • Get Active, Stay Active – involvement in a sport or physical activity
  • Me and My World – a community or environmental project
  • Adventure – a teamwork challenge through involvement in an outdoor activity (e.g Benmore and Lagganlia)

http://jassawardsciennes.blogspot.co.uk/

Sciennes helped develop an online version – eJASS.

WE also fits well with our Unicef Rights Respecting Schools programme. We have recently achieved Level One and our next steps are to continue to extend knowledge of UNCRC and to expand global citizenship. The WE programme will assist us with that. We have highlighted the relevance of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development since their launch in September 2015 and the programme also supports this extremely well, as well as our involvement in the #iwillcampaign, promoting pupil social action.


Sciennes Pupils’ Voices Heard on Food Insecurity  7.12.2016

In May 2016, pupils from current P5B (then P4B) gave their opinions on a variety of issues relating to Food Insecurity, in a wonderful morning of engaging and thought provoking activities designed and led by Dr Chelsea Marshall and a team from Nourish Scotland, based at Summerhall. You can read the full report they contributed to here:

Listening to what children think about food insecurity

http://www.cypcs.org.uk/ufiles/limitjs.pdf
    Acknowledgements
This report was commissioned by the Children and Young People’s Commissioner Scotland; all copyright permission belongs to the Commissioner’s office. Photographs by Alan McCredie, design by graphics coop.

The authors of this report are: Elli Kontorravdis, Olga Bloemen and Bella Crowe from Nourish Scotland. With kind thanks to Home-Start UK Scotland for co-ordination of the activity session logistics, and to children’s rights consultant Dr Chelsea Marshall whose support was integral to the design and delivery of the activity sessions. Thanks also to Sciennes Primary School for hosting a pilot session providing valuable feedback, and to Dr Flora Douglas for comments and feedback throughout the research. Most importantly, thank you to the children and families who gave their time to share thoughts on food insecurity, and the children that contributed drawings and photographs, we hope this report is an accurate reflection of your views.

Article 12

You have the right to an opinion and for it to be listened to and taken seriously.

Article 27

You have the right to have a good enough standard of living.


Edinburgh’s Hogmany in Aid of Unicef 21.12.2016

Following 2015’s successful partnership, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay has once again joined with Unicef to help children in danger.

Last year, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay raised a fantastic amount of money to protect the children of Syria. However, the conflict has continued and there are now more children in urgent need of life-saving aid. These children have lost loved ones, homes and schools. They need someone to keep them safe and warm this winter.

Unicef will be raising money for Syria’s children through the Torchlight Parade on 30 December and various activities on New Year’s Eve, including turning Edinburgh’s most iconic buildings blue at 10pm to highlight Unicef’s work. The whole city will join together to help children in danger.


Dr Martin Luther King Day Assembly 13.1.17

On Friday 13th January we learned about the extraordinary life of Dr Martin Luther King Junior and how his peaceful actions and brave dedication to equal rights for all led to change. We asked pupils what they could do in 2017 to make change happen and make a difference for others. Last term, P7 pupil Nicky raised almost £500 with his Save the Children Christmas Jumper campaign and P6 pupil Catherine spoke at Assembly to explain how she is being sponsored to donate a length of hair to the Little Princess Trust to help a child suffering hair loss due to cancer treatment.We celebrated Sciennes’ parent, Mr Colin Sim, who took action to make a huge difference to learning and teaching for our pupils by submitting two grant funding applications for the school. One to Aviva Life Assurance was awarded £500 and one to the OneFamily Foundation was awarded an incredible £5000! Thank you to all the Sciennes Family for voting. The money will be used to purchase a year group set of iPads.

Article 1

Everyone under 18 has these rights.

Article 2

You have the right to protection against discrimination.

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


Global Goal 10 Reduced Inequalities 20.1.2017

Sciennes P4-7 Assembly SDG10 20.1.17 from Sciennes Primary School

On Friday 20th January 2017 we were delighted to welcome back Former Pupils Jamie Underwood, Li-Sian Song and James Stewart, who are now in S6 at James Gillespie’s High School and preparing for a visit to twinned schools in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa in February. They have asked pupils to donate pencil cases, toys, games and clothes which can be handed into the School Office until Friday 2nd February.

Mr Howie gave an inspirational presentation on how Elizabeth Eckford, one of the Arkansas Little Rock Nine, successfully managed her emotions and response to the extreme prejudice and racist hostility she endured in 1957, just for going to school. Her remarkable dignity is an example to us all and linked very effectively to school use of ‘Emotions Talk’ as a support for pupils in managing their emotions. Mr Howie encouraged everyone to learn not only from role models in history but also from people around us in how we manage our emotions and stand up for what we value. We all certainly look to Mr Howie to inspire and encourage us with his engaging and deeply thought-provoking presentations, taking powerful lessons we can all learn from History and relating them to our school.

We thanked Sciennes’ parent, Mr Colin Sim, who as well as recently securing £5500 for digital learning through funding applications also secured a grant of £2000 from South Central Edinburgh Neighbourhood Partnership to enhance our school grounds. There is great interest from the children in the willow structures currently being installed in the playground by Gus and his team from ‘Earth Calling’.

Article 1

Everyone under 18 has these rights.

Article 2

You have the right to protection against discrimination.

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


 Citizenship Assembly 27.1.17

On Friday 27th January our Assembly theme was Citizenship with a particular focus on our Pupil Eco Group’s recent and planned actions in school. We were delighted to welcome Kirstin Unger from the Parent Eco Group, who works so hard to improve our school grounds, planting with pupils and greening our playground so beautifully. Kirstin explained very clearly and engagingly how to take part in the annual RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch at the weekend. We look forward to hearing how many pupils took part and which birds were spotted.

Kirstin encourages participation in the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch

The Pupil Eco Group agreed with Kirstin’s suggestion at a recent joint Parent and Pupil Eco Group  meeting to organise regular collections for loose play. Michael and Catie encouraged everyone to bring in pine cones next week. Faye encouraged classes to use the online Travel Tracker to record journeys to school and Ali reminded P6C that his class is on Litter Duty next week. We were excited to announce that Sciennes is one of ten schools to be selected for a new Eco Schools eTwinning project and we will find out more next month.

Barack Obama promoted Global Citizenship throughout his presidency and has now handed the mic to a new generation. The Obama Foundation http://www.obama.org has been set up to focus on developing the next generation of citizens and we aim to help all our children become Responsible Citizens.


We welcomed Lesley and Lorna to tell everyone about a new Scripture Union lunchtime club for P6/P7 starting after the February break.

Lorna and Lesley launch new SU Club

Our Sports Captains celebrated pupil achievements and promoted the JGHS Appeal for small toys and pencil cases. P6 Digital Leaders were congratulated on setting up a new lunchtime iPad Coding Club and P7 Digital Leaders for helping P1 in the Digital Learning Centre.

Ms Anstruther has asked for donations of dressing up clothes to help us continue to address 1 in 5 Child Poverty. Pupils Bella and Emma came up with this great idea to help include everyone in dressing up days.

Classes will be learning about digital safety this month and we wished Happy Chinese New Year to all our families celebrating.

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


Fairtrade and Get Ready for Red Nose Day Assembly 3.3.2017

On Friday 3rd March 2017 we held a Fairtrade Assembly to highlight how paying a fair, minimum price to Fairtrade farmers can make a real difference to their livelihoods. Mr Hutchison is organising a Fairtrade Craft and Tuckshop (with the support of the One World Shop based at  Nicolson Square) on Thursday 9th March and will provide further details next week.
Make Bananas Fair: Foncho film for Schools from Fairtrade Schools on Vimeo.We watched a video of Kid President meeting Former President Barack Obama where his key question was, “How can adults and children work together to change the world?” and the answer was to treat everyone with kindness and respect,Mr Obama has encouraged the next generation to ‘take up the mic‘ through his Obama Foundation and we are encouraging pupils to get involved in Red Nose Day by ‘saying something funny for money.’

We are mindful of our 1 in 5 Child Poverty Awareness project and so pupils need only bring a donation if they wish, rather than be sponsored. Pupils will be asked to share a joke, funny story, rhyme, poem or drawing with their class as part of our whole school Comedy Festival later in the month and we are looking forward to encouraging their confidence in performance and their Listening and Talking skills in a fun way, and as part of Health and Wellbeing programmes.

P7 pupils will soon be selling red noses in school and their P7 Comedy Book “BaDUMtsh”, professionally published by Sciennes’ parent Mary Turner Thomson through her Whitewater Publishing Company launches on 17th March, with profits donated to Comic Relief. Please respond to the email you will shorty receive to place advance orders by 8th March, ahead of printing dates.

P7 Comedy Book

Sciennes’ parent Richard Melvin, comedian and compere at The Stand, has very kindly offered to provide comedy workshops for P6 pupils and we continue to use the BBC Learning resource “Comedy Classroom” to develop literacy skills through comedy. We are very grateful for the support and encouragement we have received from the Gilded Balloon. We began to learn the new Red Nose Day song for Comic Relief and everyone who takes part in our Comedy Festival will receive a certificate.

P5 pupil Cole blew everyone away with his outstanding street dance skills and he gained deserved applause for his confident performance. P7 Sports Captains congratulated pupils on many recent achievements.


Get ‘Reddy’ for Red Nose Day P4-7 Assembly 10.3.17

On Friday 10th March we shared plans for Red Nose Day on Friday 24th March. P7s will begin selling red noses next week at £1 each and pupils will be asked to ‘Stand Up for Comic Relief’ by taking the mic and saying something funny as part of our whole school Comedy Festival.


Our P7 Comedy Book “BaDUMtsh” is currently being printed, professionally formatted and published by Sciennes’ parent Mary Turner Thomson through her Whitewater Publishing Company and we will hold an official Book Launch during Assembly next week. We are delighted that much loved comedian Patrick Monahan so kindly sent a foreword for the children’s book. Pre-ordered books can be collected on the day and copies can be purchased for £5 each from that day with profits to Comic Relief.

Another celebrated Sciennes’ parent, Richard Melvin, has generously offered to provide comedy workshops for P6 pupils as part of our Comedy Festival.

As Fairtrade Fortnight draws to a close, Mr Hutchison and Sciennes’ Pupil ECO Group held a very successful Fairtrade Craft and Tuckshop. Thank you very much to all who supported. We showed a video about Fairtrade cotton and P6 pupils Louis and Henry are planning a football match to continue to raise awareness of the Fairtrade Foundation and its aims.


Fairtrade cotton from Fairtrade Schools on Vimeo.

We sang “Put a Little Love in Your Heart” and encouraged everyone to keep being kind. There has been some rough play with our loose play materials recently so pupils were encouraged to take greater care of playground equipment.

Caitlin from the ECO Group encouraged everyone to keep using the Travel Tracker and reminded P4B that they are on Litter Picking Duty next week.

Our House Captains did a fabulous job of presenting news and recent pupil achievements and we sang the new Comic Relief song, “Put a Nose on It!”


P7 Comedy Book Launch in Support of Comic Relief 17.3.2017

On Friday 17th March we held a special assembly to launch our P7 Comedy Book “BaDUMtsh”, professionally formatted and published by Sciennes’ parent and published author, Mary Turner Thomson, through her Whitewater Publishing Company. Mary addressed the P4-7 Assembly and explained the significant achievement of our pupils officially becoming ‘published authors’ themselves. It was wonderful to welcome so many parents to the event and we were also delighted to welcome City of Edinburgh’s Literacy Development Officer, Evelyn Love-Gajardo.

Mary Turner Thomson and Evelyn Love-Gajardo (CEC Literacy Development Officer)

This is the seventh book Sciennes’ pupils have produced with Mary and we looked back at our involvement with her over several years. We gave Mary a small token of thanks with a Love Hearts Thank You cake and Fairtrade flowers.

We are thrilled that celebrated and much loved comedian Patrick Monahan (who came to an Assembly in August and joined us for a Daily Mile run) so kindly sent a foreword for the children’s book. Laura took to the stage to read aloud Patrick’s thoughtful and encouraging words to the children.

Laura reads Foreword by Patrick Monahan

Thank you to P7 teachers Mrs Jane Maguire, Mrs Fiona Barker, Ms Fiona Sellar and Mr Mark McKenna who worked so hard with their pupils to create and organise the content for the book.

Thank you Mrs Maguire, Mrs Barker, Ms Sellar and Mr McKenna

A group of pupils from each of our three P7 classes confidently ‘took the mic’ to deliver a selection of jokes, funny stories and cartoons from their book, with all P7 pupils supportively calling out “BaDUMtsh” at the end of each punchline. All our pupils from P1-P7 have been asked to ‘Stand Up for Comic Relief’ and deliver jokes or funny stories to their classes as part of a whole school Comedy Festival in support of Red Nose Day next week.

P7 pupils ‘took the mic’ and shared jokes, funny stories and cartoons from their book.

Richard Melvin, accomplished comedy writer, producer and comedian has generously offered his time to provide comedy workshops for our three P6 classes where they will also learn about different jobs and roles in comedy production.

In support of Comic Relief, P6 pupil Emily is leading a bake sale for her year group and P6 pupils Niamh, Faye and Amelia are organising a sale of bath bombs and keyrings. All pupils have been invited to wear red and bring a donation on Friday 24th March.

Niamh, Faye and Amelia share their plans for Red Nose Day fundraising

Thank you very much to all the parents and to Pupil Support Assistants Mrs Tariq and Mrs Wilkins who helped cut up and distribute celebratory cakes, printed with the children’s book cover.

Celebratory cakes!

An additional box of books should arrive from the printers on Monday. Pre-ordered books can be collected next week and copies can be purchased for £5 each with profits to Comic Relief.

Mary with her son, P7 pupil Zach

The Eco Group and Mr Hutchison were congratulated on their successful Fairtrade stall last week which helps Sciennes to work towards FairAware status. Louis and Henry in P6 announced that their football match in support of the Fairtrade Foundation will take place for P6 and P7 pupils from 1.30pm on Saturday 25th March on the Meadows.

Participation in the annual SEET Euroquiz held at City Chambers is an interesting, fun and exciting event, worthwhile in itself, but we were extremely excited to share that this year’s P6 team – Alice, Ali, Hamzah and James – won the Edinburgh heat! Congratulations to the team and grateful thanks to families for their support.

Winners of Euroquiz 2017 Edinburgh Heat!

P5A pupils, Rory, Isla and Ella announced that they will be organising an Easter Egg Foodbank appeal and asked for donated Easter eggs to be handed in to the School Office by 31st March.


Red Nose Day 2017 24.3.2017

On Friday 24th March 2017 Sciennes celebrated Red Nose Day with a whole school Comedy Festival, designed to develop confidence in public speaking and as part of our Health and Wellbeing programme, in support of Comic Relief. We watched a film about 12 year old Hassan from Sierra Leone and found out how Comic Relief has supported him return to school following the Ebola crisis.

Generous donations and support for P6 led bake sales, friendship bracelet, bath bombs and key ring sales as well as P7 Comedy Book and Red Noses sales have helped our school communitycome together to make a difference to others, in the UK and abroad. Thank you.

Some of our pupil jokers took to the stage at Assembly to share funny stories, knock-knock jokes, slapstick and one-liners. Thank you to everyone who took part and all will receive a special Red Nose Day certificate next week.

Our P7 House and Sports Captains celebrated many recent pupil achievements and P7 Sports Captain, Robert, reported on recent runaway Cross Country success.

The Evening News took a photograph yesterday which is on Page 17 of today’s newspaper (see below) and another photograph taken today will appear in tomorrow’s edition.

Article 1

Everyone under 18 has these rights.


ECO Schools Fourth Green Flag! and Earth Day Assembly 21.4.17

Fourth Green ECO Schools Green Flag! Well done Team Sciennes!

PUPIL ECO TEAM
P4 Bethan, Catie, Isla
P5 Jim, Nina, Sophie
P6 Michael. Faye, Ali
P7 Evelyn, Caitlin, Laura
JRSOs Amelia, Josh and Declan

On Friday 21st April at the P4-7 Assembly we reflected on ‘Earth Day‘ (22nd April) and watched a video “Man Vs Earth” to help us think about issues affecting the planet and how we can work together to make a difference.

We looked back at our ECO Schools journey since 2008 and what pupils, staff and parents have achieved together. Addressing issues facing the planet is not just the responsibility of the ECO Pupil and Parent Groups and our JRSOs. Each of us has a responsibility, individually and as part of the school community.

In the last few years we have been working towards our Fourth Green Flag, focusing on Litter, School Grounds and Active Travel. We were delighted to be able to announce today that Sciennes has just been awarded our Fourth Eco Schools Green Flag which Mr Hutchison unfurled ceremoniously during Assembly. Miss Gallagher, Mr Hutchison and Mrs Dickson have led the Pupil ECO Team extremely well throughout the year. We congratulated and thanked everyone throughout school who has contributed to Sciennes receiving this prestigious award. Well done Team Sciennes! Particular thanks to Phoebe Cochrane, Kirstin Unger, Laura Bird, Corinne Kirk and all the parents who support the ECO work of the school and commendation to the indomitable spirit and relentless enthusiasm of our wonderful Business Manager, Angela Christie, always a key driver in all things ECO.

We have already begun to plan how we can achieve our Fifth Green Flag, taking on two new ECO topics + Litter and continuing our focus on the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Global Goals.

Caspar, Jay and Henry spoke about their fundraising plans for the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Appeal for Yemen and we reminded everyone about Pedal on Parliament, taking place on Earth Day, Saturday 22nd April.

Tremendous achievement and we thank Stephen Harland, Education Support Officer Keep Scotland Beautiful -Eco-Schools Scotland, Kerr McConnell, Education and Learning Co-oridinator and all at Eco-Schools for their support and encouragement. Read their kind report below:

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.


Ian from SEPA Intalls Air Quality Sensor 12.6.2017

Thank you very much to Ian Wager, Senior Specialist Air Scientist at the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) for installing an Air Quality sensor. We hope to see a drop in emissions when the road is temporarily closed for the Summer Fair on Saturday 3rd June and will analyse data from the sensor with pupils over the next few weeks in the run up to National Clean Air Day on 15th June.


Take the Pledge This Clean Air Day! 12.6.2017

As you may be aware this Thursday (15th) is the first National Clean Air Day which coincides with Cycle to School week. This is a perfect opportunity to continue the great work that Sciennes has done in promoting safer, healthier travel to school and of course to raise awareness about the dangers of air pollution. Thanks to the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) who have installed an air pollution monitor at the front of the school, you can monitor the air pollution outside our school on the website http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/get-interactive/data/air-quality-primary-school-sensor/ and use the drop down menu to visit Sciennes Primary School data. From here you can view the air pollution from each day, check the air pollution density times during each day, and track the air pollution to 5 minute intervals during school opening and closing times.
Please also check out https://www.cleanairday.org.uk/pledge to find out more ways to support National Clean Air Day. To get involved on social media please use the #NationalCleanAirDay
www.cleanairday.org.uk
Latest. Free Resources for Scotland Download. Download free resources for National Clean Air Day in Scotland. Learn about air. Venturefest. Making the right choices …
Another great website to check out at home is http://www.learnaboutair.com/  This is an interactive website with fantastic videos all about air pollution, the history, the causes and the solution to the problem.

Thanks for your continued support,

Gregor Hutchison (P6A)

Cabinet Secretary for the Environment to Visit Sciennes 12.6.2017

We are looking forward to welcoming Ms Roseanna Cunningham, Cabinet Secretary for the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, to Sciennes on Wednesday 14th June 2017 ahead of the inaugural National Clean Air Day on Thursday 15th June. Ms Cunningham will meet P6A pupils and members of our Pupil ECO Group to find out what they have been learning about air quality and how they have been analysing data from a recently installed air quality sensor, provided by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). Sciennes has pioneered and sustained active travel policies for more than twenty years and we hope to share our experiences and ambitions with the Minister during her visit.


MSP Cabinet Secretary for the Environment and Climate Change Listens to Pupil Views on Air Quality 15.6.2017

P6A pupils and Pupil ECO Group reps were delighted to have an opportunity to meet with Ms Roseanna Cunningham, MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, on Wednesday 14th June, just ahead of the inaugural National Clean Air Day on Thursday 15th June, to share what they have been learning about air quality.

Ms Roseanna Cunningham Cabinet Secretary for the Environment listens to pupil views on air quality
Mr Gregor Hutchison with his P6A class, members of the Pupil ECO Group and JRSO Josh
Pupil ECO Group member Faye leading the march for improved air quality and increased active travel
James being interviewed by STV News
Lucy being interviewed by STV News

Principal Air Scientist Colin Gillespie and Senior Specialist Air Scientist Ian Wager from the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) worked with Sciennes’ Science Specialist, Mr Mark McKenna, and P6 Class Teacher, Mr Gregor Hutchison, to deliver practical experiments designed to help the children understand how pollution and emissions can adversely affect air quality.

Principal Air Scientist Colin Gillespie, SEPA
Pupils from Mr Hutchison’s P6A class have been learning about air pollution using SEPA’s educational  resources
Raising awareness of factors affecting air quality through practical science experiments

P6A have been using Colin Gillespie’s excellent SEPA materials in class and have been analysing data from an air quality sensor installed in our playground a few weeks ago by Ian Wager.

SEPA’s Senior Specialist Air Scientist Ian Wager installed an air quality sensor two weeks ago
You, too, can monitor the air pollution outside our school on the website http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/get-interactive/data/air-quality-primary-school-sensor/
We were delighted to receive a handheld air quality sensor, courtesy of https://www.cleanairday.org.uk/

The pupils have also undertaken traffic surveys in surrounding streets to try to see and offer explanations for trends in air pollution at different times of the day. For example, the children noticed that raised levels occurred on two very wet days and hypothesised that could be due to more people taking to their cars. They were also concerned about the high levels of pollution that can be pinpointed to occur during their playtimes.

Article 24

You have the right to the best health possible and to medical care and information.

Article 29

You have the right to education which develops your personality, respect for others’ rights and the environment.

Hope as many as possible can join Ms Angela Christie who is leading another Cycle to School Day on Friday 16th June, as part of Bike Week.


WE Summit for JGHS P6 Pupils 15.6.2017

On 15th June 2017 Sciennes hosted a WE Summit for P6 pupils from Preston Street, Tollcross, Royal Mile and Taobh na Pairce schools.as a James Gillespie’s Cluster Transition event with the WE Movement charity. This international organisation encourages young people to think about and take action on issues which concern them. A senior writer from Toronto, Jesse Mintz, published an article on the day’s events:

From one school to many.

By Jesse Mintz

Library shelves around Edinburgh are stocked because of their generosity. Syrian children living in refugee camps climb on playgrounds because of their fundraising. And, visitors to the Scottish Parliament now learn about children’s rights because of their mural. “They” are the pupils of Sciennes Primary School and their story is a tale of WE Schools.

“Social action, making a difference, caring about other people, WE fits seamlessly with everything we have going on,” says Lucy Gallagher, the Sciennes Primary School Deputy Headteacher. The Sciennes school community is a picture of strength found through unity.

That’s Lucy’s vision—and the reason 200 pupils from five schools have come together for a WE Schools Youth Summit. “Today, we want you to learn about yourself and issues you care about, but we also want you to mix and mingle, to meet people, to connect with your new friends,” she tells them melodically.

And with that, the day begins. WE speakers lead workshops, games and action plans with each activity stimulating a buzz of conversations, while simultaneously inviting self-reflection.

But even more than that, they make connections—with fellow pupils and between schools.

“Social action, making a difference, caring about other people, WE fits seamlessly with everything we have going on.”

The youth summit is an introduction to WE for Preston Street Primary School teacher Ross Anderson. By lunch, he’s decided to bring WE Schools back to his school. “My pupils are already coming up with ideas and events. There is a vibe now, that if we pool together [between schools] we can do something special. I want to strike while the iron is hot.”

Lucy— who started her teaching career at Sciennes 27 years ago—agrees. “It’s fertile ground here, not only in our school but across Edinburgh.” Throughout the summit, pupils are captivated. They follow closely while WE speaker Alex maps out the history of youth-led social movements. They nod along as he explains that they, too, can raise their voice for issues they care about.

“At any age, your smallest actions can make massive difference,” he tells them.

During workshops led by WE facilitators, pupils absorb inspiration before they begin planning out actions. They talk about protecting refugees rights, fighting discrimination and cleaning up the environment, but it’s nearly unanimous; the issue most pupils care about is homelessness.

“It’s the biggest issue Edinburgh faces,” Ross explains.

After hours of workshops, the groups return to the hall to share their ideas: a sleep in for homelessness with pupils from all five schools; a charity fun run and cake sale for local shelters; and a youth march through the city to raise awareness.

The presentations concluded, there’s excited chatter about future events. For the pupils, being a part of something larger than themselves is a powerful feeling.

“It motivates us, to do more” says Year 6 Sciennes pupil, Natalie. “We get to see we’re not alone.”

As for the teachers, there’s a sense of possibility in the growing community. “You’ve created a network here today that we teachers are very excited about,” Lucy says as the pupils pack up for the day. “You’ve lit a fire and these connections will have impacts for years.”


Great Turnout for Cycle to School Day 16.6.2017

Great turnout for the last cycle of the school session.

All the way to school on a balance bike. Fabulous!

P6 UNCRC Art Project with Together (The Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights) 24.6.2016

UNCRC panels destined for Scottish Parliament in the Autumn
Juliet Harris and Liz Millership visiting to see UNCRC panels created Together

We hope that families will take the opportunity to come into school before the end of term to see the wonderful UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) panels currently on display in the foyer outside the Gym Hall. They will also be on display in the Scottish Parliament in the Autumn. Below, the children explain the themes and messages in the panels.

Chelsea Stinson, Children’s Voices Project Manager from the Children’s Parliament (based at Summerhall) approached us with a very exciting opportunity to work with Together – the Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights (see video below).

Over the past few months, Together and the Scottish Universities Insight Institute  hosted four seminars on children’s rights in law, practice and policy, sharing national international examples of good practice with a diverse group of delegates:

http://www.togetherscotland.org.uk/resources-and-networks/the-uncrc-in-scotland-seminar-series-2017 

As part of this seminar series, Together has been working to ensure that children and young people play a key role and that key messages from the seminars are accessible to everyone. Together commissioned artists Joanna Boyce, Yonnie and Lyver to work with our P6 pupils to present key messages in a creative and engaging way.

Three young people who had attended the seminars (Joel, Thomas and Suki) interpreted the key messages and themes then P6C pupils from Miss Katy Stewardson’s class – Arwen, Thomas, Alma, Luis, Eilidh, Isaac, Eamon and Rachel – worked closely with the artists to visualise the imagery suggested, for example ‘rights in the clouds’, ‘a policy factory’, ‘a meadow of rights’ and ‘connected Together in a daisy chain.’

During the project on 7th, 8th and 9th of June, Miss Stewardson’s whole class discussed and worked on visualising UNCRC articles, particularly Article 42 Everyone should know about the UNCRC (finding ways to depict 42 of the articles) and Article 31 The right to play and rest.

P6C have included their own images of 42 articles of the UNRC
P6C’s ideas will help create a new Playground Charter
Juliet and Liz from Together Alliance visited P6C on Election Day 8th June when Emily illustrated Article 4

PANEL ONE
Isaac – The Policy Factory
“My panel showed all adults trying to let children have the rights but the children aren’t actually involved in the process. I enjoyed working with the people and painting the mural.” Isaac
The Policy Factory, but where are the children?

The Policy Factory from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL TWO
Thomas – Right in Reach?

“My panel shows the children reaching for their rights. They aren’t getting their rights because the adults are not letting the children help them make the policies. It is important children are involved in things about them.” Thomas
How can we help all children to reach their rights?

Right in Reach? from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL THREE
Luis – Teardrop

” My panel was the one about not getting heard. And children not getting respect. There was a teardrop in the middle because the child was sad that no one was listening to her.” Luis
A tear for the child who says, “No one asked me.”


Teardrop from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL FOUR
Eilidh – The Children’s Rights Clan

“Painting the mural was really fun. The artists were nice and helpful. I learned that I could change rights for other children in Scotland. I got better at painting over the two and a half days and enjoyed myself. I hope the mural changes the MSPs’ views on decisions about kids’ rights.” Eilidh
The Clan, all Together for Children’s Rights, including Noel, Leo and Suki

The Children’s Rights Clan from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL FIVE
Alma – Right at the Heart

“This panel is where kids are well heard by all the adults. Instead of doing homework straight after school, this girl went outside, had some fresh air and learned more insects. Her teacher teaches mindfulness to her at school and all the children are well treated and well heard.” Alma
Getting It Right, at the Heart

Right at the Heart from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL SIX
Eamon – Equations (It All Adds Up)

“I think I got a lot out of painting the mural. I developed my teamwork skills while having fun with my friends. The panel I worked on the most was the Equations board which is about three people talking to each other about how rights should just be there, that every child has them.” Eamon
It All Adds Up – every child born equals the same rights


Equations from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL SEVEN
Rachel -The Meadow of Children’s Rights

I really enjoyed working on the mural because it involved being very creative! I liked the ideas Joel, Thomas and Suki had come up with, so it was fun painting and building on them. The mural shows a powerful message to me and I hope it will do the same for anyone else who sees it!” Rachel
Journey along the panels to reach the Meadow of Children’s Rights

The Meadow of Rights from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

PANEL MOTIF
Arwen – Daisy Chained Together

When I painted this mural I learned that everyone has rights and that my voice should be heard. My panel/talking bit was about passing on the word of rights and that everyone should know about them. The mural was very fun to do and I learned lots about rights.” Arwen
All connected Together


The Daisy Chain from Sciennes Primary School on Vimeo.

Thank you Lyver, Yonnie and Joanna!
Introducing the project to P6C with Class Teacher Miss Katy Stewardson

Miss Stewardson’s whole class discussed and worked on visualising UNCRC articles:

Juliet Harris and Liz Millership from Together – the Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights – visiting P6C
P6C created their Class Charter with Miss Stewardson at the beginning of the year
Thank you Mrs Aliya Tariq for wonderful assistance with art project

Article 1

Everyone under 18 has these rights.

Article 12

You have the right to an opinion and for it to be listened to and taken seriously.

Article 42

All adults and children should know about this convention.


August 2016-June 2017

Rights based Learning at Sciennes