Oakwood Park Grammar School | Oakwood Road
Maidstone | Kent | ME16 8AH
Dear Parents and Carers,
Apologies for the slight delay with today’s tips – I was in school yesterday starting to film a virtual tour so that we can refresh the boy’s memories of what the school looks like and give an idea of what to expect in September! I hope that you received Mr Moody’s email detailing the other transition support that we have planned for you all.
We have now contacted all of our feeder schools and have asked if they are able to facilitate a video call in school, along with the other boys who may be coming to OPGS, as a replacement to our usual school visits. This will be with myself or another member of the pastoral team. We hope that this will give the boys a chance to ask any questions about the school and allow them to meet a friendly face who can reassure them about the transition process. If you know already that your son will be at home for the remainder of this term, could you please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know that this is the case – we will endeavour to make a phone call to any boys who are not in school. These calls should start to take place from next week but will continue for the remainder of the term.
We would like to invite our new students to get involved with some of the enrichment opportunities we are offering our own students in our “beyond the virtual classroom” programme. These have been suggested by departments to support learning at KS3 and should be completely accessible to our year 6 students as well. The link for these activities can be found here: https://www.opgs.org/year-6-7-transition/transition-enrichment/ Examples of student work, successes and further enrichment opportunities and competitions are regularly posted to twitter using the @OPGSEnrichment account which can be found here: https://twitter.com/opgsenrichment
Could I also encourage you to take a look at the Summer Reading Challenge organised by the Reading Agency: https://summerreadingchallenge.org.uk The challenge encourages children aged 4 to 11 to enjoy the benefits of reading for pleasure over the summer holidays, providing lots of fun and enjoyment as well as helping to prevent the summer reading ‘dip’.
In this week’s activities we are asking Parents to discuss a key skill for secondary school: “What should I do if…?” problem solving. Helping students to rehearse useful phrases such as “I’m lost”, “I’m sorry I’m late.”, “Please could you help me?”, “Who should I ask/ tell about…?”, “Where would I find…?” etc. will hopefully help them to stay calm and remember what to do should the situation arise for real.
Lastly, thank you to all the parents who have filled in the information for form tutors. This will help me to create the form groups, and from there houses can be allocated. If you have not yet looked at this, can I ask that this is completed by Monday 15th June please– any requests for friendship pairings may not be able to be considered if they are received after this date. The form can be found here: https://bit.ly/OPGS_NEWY720-21
Activity/Tip for Parents/Carers
Activity: Managing Situations
Discuss with your child problem solving ideas – what could they do if something does not go to plan? Who could they ask for help if they were unsure about something? Talk about your own experiences of how you have asked people to help you in different situations, emphasise that everyone needs help sometimes!
The scenarios below are probably the most common situations that year 7’s find themselves in where they might have a ‘brain freeze’ moment and not know what to do – try to discuss what they could do in these situations or who they could ask for help. If they have rehearsed a contingency plan then they might remember it when in the moment!
You will find some ideas to help with this activity here: https://www.opgs.org/year-6-7-transition/year-7-frequently-asked-questions/
Activity: Managing Situations
Complete page 18 of your student booklet.
Try to think about how this situation would make someone feel, and what the can do to make the situation better, or who they can ask to help them.