Wednesday, 28 November 2007

A Big Christmas THANK YOU!

It as a very busy evening at the Christmas Fair on Monday as you can see from these photos!

Everyone worked really hard, but enjoyed themselves too, and started to get into the Christmas mood. You can see here that Miss Beavill, Mrs Barr and Mrs Whitmarsh were on the bottle.

(Sorry, on the bottle STALL!)

Both the Infant and Junior School halls were packed with visitors, parents and friends of the schools...

...and even Santa himself turned up, giving his reindeer a rest for the evening and giving rides in his sleigh around the playground!

Best of all, the grand total profit for the evening was an amazing...

That's the very first time our Christmas Fair has raised over £3,000 so a big thank you to you all (and especially to Mrs Handley-Garland and all members of the OSA!)

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Year 3 are all Angels!

What do angels look like?

Well, in Year 3, we thought they all looked like they do on Christmas cards, but Chris Davis came in and proved us wrong! We read descriptions of angels from the Bible and found out about Cherubim, the second order of angels.

They have four wings and four faces: a lion, an ox, an eagle and a man. You can see two of the angels we made and hear our explanations in our video.

Shoe Box Appeal...

Look at the shoe boxes that we have collected for the children in Uganda. Thank you to everyone who has brought in a shoe box. The boxes will be collected from Lordshill church on Sunday and sent to Uganda in time for Christmas!

Children in Need!

Look at the dot-to-dot that we made on the floor! We joined up the dots with silver coins to raise money. We also had a 'dotty disco' to help raise money. Altogether we raised £209. Thank you everyone who contributed!

Friday, 16 November 2007

Final Few Friday Hours...

We had to fit a lot in on Friday morning!

First we worked with Josh to create performances about all our Minstead beads and we sang the Fire Fairies song, accompanied by the mandolin.

Then we moved up to the Mizmaze where we remembered the messages our creatures and plants had taught us during the week and earned our badges...

We also had to pack up our dormitories and check how eco-friendly we had been during the week...

We used only 3280 litres of clean water during the week, which is the lowest total of any school at Minstead, so we were really pleased. (Don't worry, we still kept clean, but we remembered to turn off taps when we weren't using them and have short showers!)

We used 1750 litres of recycled rainwater to flush the toilets (big and little flushes...), 88kw/h of electricity and only 1 cubic metre of gas. Even in winter, the solar panel on the roof of the eco-dorm got up to 23ºC during the week, although it was only 11ºC this morning.

All our efforts helped towards looking after Planet Earth, and you can see Alex doing just that right here...

Thanks to all the staff at Minstead for a fabulous week! You can learn more about the centre here...

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Life and Death!

Our purple bead means biodiversity and there are thousands of species of animals and plants which live near Minstead! Here is one of the most famous...

It's Erithacus! (And he's quite fat! We think he's been eating Lumbricus from the compost heap...)

And here are the girls shovelling leaves for the compost heap. They made layers with old paper towels, leaves, horse dung and lots of other biodegradable items.

Deeper into the grounds lies a former resident of Minstead who didn't make it through the winter a few years back. He's guarded over the snake wall ever since. His name is Equus. (And he can look quite creepy in torchlight!)

And several other creatures met their deaths tonight too. Our fire fairies fulfilled their destiny by being consumed in flames! They looked amazing and we sang the Fire Fairy song as they burned...

Paper and Poo!

Year 4 went to the Down to Earth Centre in Millbrook this week.

We made new sheets of paper by getting scraps of newspaper that had been soaked in water then blended with a hand blender. We then scooped it up in a frame and pressed out excess water to make a sheet of paper.

It was very messy... but not as messy as...

...mucking out the animals! (It's a good job you can't smell it through the web!)

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Bog Blog!

Warning to Minstead Parents!

This blog post contains scenes of a muddy nature. There may be very dirty clothes in the washing bag on Friday!!

The bog is a very beautiful and protected area of the New Forest...

Here's what is looks like from up on the heathland...

Here's what is looks like from the air...

And here's what it looks like close up!

The surface of the bog is like the skin of very thick custard. A small insect could walk across the bowl of custard without breaking the skin and falling in, and we can do the same on the bog.... if we are very careful!

A plant called sphagnum moss grows on the bog and it can hold twenty times its own mass of water, which makes the bog like a giant sponge which is springy to walk on. It's a very strange feeling even in wellies, but even stranger if you decide to to go barefoot, like lots of children did!

We nearly had to leave Mrs Vaudin behind because she got stuck in the mud on her birthday! (Those aren't her legs in the photo, by the way!)

And from the bog, we had the most beautiful view of golden reds and browns which make up the autumn colours of the forest...

And all only 15 minutes drive from Oakwood!

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Getting to know the village...

It's been a really busy day in the New Forest!

One group got their feet wet again in the Fleetwater stream. We borrowed many creatures from the stream so that we could look at them carefully under microscopes, identify them, learn about how they live and then put them back again...

We found this creature, and you can see what's special about it by watching the video...

...isn't it fantastic? (If you know what it is, you can leave a comment for us!)

We also went into the village of Minstead. (We had special help on the journey from Edelweiss - that's Miss Beavill to you and me!) In the churchyard, we found the grave of a very famous author...

- if you know what books he wrote, you can leave us a comment... the pipe is a clue!

In the evening, we were helped out by Delphinus who came to visit us from Oakwood too. (Mrs Barr!)

We made gruesome faces from clay, which we will fire in the fire on Thursday night.

We also made colourful bandanas, each with a pattern made from two motifs which tell a story of Minstead. We'll wear them at the camp fire too!

And have you ever wondered what Mrs Whitmarsh's wellies look like?

Well, now you know!

Monday, 12 November 2007

The Wild Woods!

The Year 4 Minstead people have arrived in the Wild Woods!

(Well, Acres Down, which is here...)

The sun was really low in the sky (because it's nearly winter) and it shone beautifully through the trees...

...and even though it was cold, it didn't stop us from making a stony snake, getting our birth stones, following a maze, splashing in the ford and filling our wellies, making human camouflaged cocoons with leaves, counting the points on holly leaves, following the stream under the road, passing the thenga...

...and listening to tunes through trees! (You'll have to ask someone how that worked when they get back!)

In the evening, we made decorated lanterns from jam jars...

...and we'll be using them later in the week for a night time Shakespearean performance!

Come back for more news tomorrow...

Saturday, 10 November 2007

Is there a war on...?

Year 6 were evacuated from Southampton on Friday evening because of the bombing and they stayed in safety with the Oakwood family in Lordswood.

They made sure they had their gas masks and had a chance to talk to real veterans from World War II. During the evening, they also looked at some artefacts and clothing from the 1940s.

After going to bed, they were woken by the air raid siren and went down into the shelter, where they sung some songs to keep them cheerful.

And best of all, they learned how to dance!

We'll post some photos soon too!

Friday, 9 November 2007

Pupil News...

We are pleased to announce that the very first edition of Oakwood Pupil News was published this week!

Children from all year groups have worked on it with Mrs Whitmarsh and you're very lucky to see it!

Why's that...?

It's because it really is a pupils' newspaper - written by pupils and to be read by pupils! (You're only allowed to read it because we've put it on our website! Click on the picture above to read it...)

Let us know what you think!

Friday, 2 November 2007

Our Amazing Art Week!

Sculptures Outside...

We have been creating scultpures out in our playground using leaves, sticks
and stones collected from the Science Walk Way! Look at this amazing rocket!

Here is a shelter that we made using logs!

Here is Henry the Hedgehog. We made him out of leaves and he has got spikes made from sticks that we collected. Can you see his nose?

Some children made a bonfire sculpture by balancing logs against each other and using leaves for the fire.

Charcoal Pictures...

We have created some charcoal pictures of 'Autumn trees'.

Here is a charcoal tree. We have been smudging to create an effect!

Colour Mixing...

We have been colour mixing to create 'splatter pictures' like Jackson Pollock.

Clay Models...

Here is a model tree with drooping branches!

This tree has got leaves on it. Can you see the detail?

Here is Henry the Hedgehog again. We pinched the clay to make the spikes.

Collage Crazy...

Here is an Autumn scene with Autumn leaves.

Look at the orange, red and yellow leaves that are about to fall from these trees.