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St. Agnes' Catholic Primary School

Act justly, love tenderly, walk humbly with your God

Rosedale Road, Ryton, Tyne And Wear NE40 4UN

stagnescatholicprimaryschool@gateshead.gov.uk

0191 413 2184

News

Here is a selection of school news.  Please also visit our class pages or our Twitter feed for more news. 

Success at the Ryton Show

Following last year's success at the annual show, this year's effort was just as impressive. All children in Years 1-6 submitted entries into the hand-made birthday card class,  resulting in two placed entries. Several children also submitted entries in various classes, such as flower arranging, decorated biscuits, photography and 500-word story writing (where we picked up 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize.) In the inter-school cricket, we reached the final against Ryton Juniors, to be rained off half way through; however, we were awarded the cricket trophy and happily retained the Jack Gray Memorial Trophy, along with a £500 cheque. This will be used to buy a range of games and activities for the children to use during wet play-times.  Well done St Agnes'!

Outdoor developments

You may have already noticed some changes to our outdoor space. Several trees have been removed from the playground border with Hill Rise as a consequence of the new pipe-line from the Story Homes development. The area has been rotivated and reseeded; this is now fenced off for the time being to allow the new grass to grow. There has been an issue with the new surface that was due to be put down under the adventure trail. This will remain also fenced off until it is resolved.

However, we are delighted with the new canopy that has been installed along the side of the school building, providing almost 150 square metres of cover. This already came into its own today as wet weather greeted us on the first day back. We intend to add some new outdoor furniture in the coming weeks. Story Homes is also organising the planting of new trees and hedges to compensate for the lost trees, as well as some further enhancements on site in the autumn.   

Summer Festival

Our Summer Festival, which took place on 21st July, was a huge success. Although we battled through the drizzle, the children demonstrated their enthusiasm, confidence and talent in bucket loads. They were all superb! It is the one time when we can get everyone together and perform in front of a huge audience. We think all of the performers (including the staff) thoroughly enjoyed themselves! Thank you so much for coming along in such large numbers - it always makes the occasion special. To all involved - a huge well done...We were hugely proud of everyone! Galleries and videos are being

To view the full photo gallery and videos, click HERE.

The day ended with our barbecue, which was truly blest with a dose of sunshine. Again, it was a lovely community atmosphere, and a great time to reflect on the last year and catch up with friends. Thanks to all involved in the planning, the making of food, setting up, collecting and selling raffle tickets etc.

Diocesan Schools Festival

Our Year 6 pupils attended the Diocesan Schools' Festival at the Emmaus Youth Village in Allensford in June. The event, held over several days, saw well over 1000 Year 6 pupils from primary schools from right across the diocese join together for a time of prayer, reflection, witness, fun and praise. The exciting and uplifting event was run by YMT (Youth Mission Team.)  Fr James also popped by to visit.

A busy sporting start to the summer season

The summer term is now well underway, with lots of physical activity going on. In the first week, a squad of Year 2 children took part in an Indoor Athletics event at St Thomas More with other schools in our cluster. There were no placings at this event, but our children performed extremely well, working skilfully together as a team. On Wednesday 3rd May, a squad of Year 6 pupils competed in a Multi-Skills tournament, coming away with bronze medals. Well done to all of our competitors.

This Wednesday, our football team competed in one of the semi-final rounds of the Bishop Cunningham Cup, a diocesan football competition, which began last Autumn. We hosted the round featuring the last remaining schools in the north of the diocese, with matches played at Ryton and Crawcrook Albion, against St Mary’s, Sunderland; St James’, Hebburn and Sacred Heart, Fenham. After losing our first game narrowly to St James’, we beat Sacred Heart, but sadly missed going through to the finals after a thrilling game against a very strong St Mary’s side (who had beaten Sacred Heart 7-0!) which ended 3-1 to St Mary’s. Well done to the squad and Mr Ferguson for getting this far!

We are delighted that Azeem Ghumann, this season’s cricket professional from Ryton C.C., is joining us every Tuesday afternoon this term to offer some specialist coaching. He is currently working with Years 3 and 5; it will be Years 4 and 6 after half term. We are delighted that Ian Pearson, coach from Gateshead Tennis, based at Blaydon Tennis Club, is continuing to work with Year 2 each Friday morning. Next week, Years 1-6 will receive a Judo taster session from a specialist instructor. We are still waiting for the date to be confirmed for Year 4 to attend the Regional Final of the Skipping Festival. There are many other events to come as the term progresses. 

Holy Week Liturgies

On the final day of Spring Term, we gathered as a whole school for three separate liturgies. The first liturgy focused on Holy Thursday; members of staff washed the feet of children from each class, and we recalled the Last Supper. After lunch, the mood changed and we re-enacted Jesus' journey to the cross, his death and burial in the tomb, using readings for each Station of the Cross. At the end of the day, we heard about the story of Easter morning, when Jesus' friends found the empty tomb. We raised the roof when we stood up to sing "Risen!"

Click HERE to visit the gallery of pictures from our liturgies.

Stations of the Cross

Although Holy Week takes place next week, we have been celebrating the events of Holy Week in school this week.  On the final day of term, we gathered together for three separate liturgies, recalling The Last Supper, The Crucifixion and The Resurrection. Throughout Lent, we have gathered on Friday mornings for special Lent Liturgies, led by most of our classes. Thanks to all those who have been able to join us.   On Wednesday afternoon, Years 5 and 6 joined pupils from St Joseph’s, Highfield for a joint celebration of the Stations of the Cross in St Agnes’ Church. As ever, it was a very moving and thoughtful service of readings, drama and music.

To view pictures of all fourteen stations, click HERE  to visit the gallery. 

St Agnes’ Got the Look!

The annual Gateshead Dance Festival took place earlier this week at The Sage, Gateshead over two days and evenings. Overall, there were around 100 entries, and St Agnes’ performed on Tuesday evening.  It is always a spectacular event, and gives the children the opportunity to perform in an amazing venue, with sound, lights and a huge audience.  This year’s theme was the 1980s, and our children danced to ‘U Got the Look’ by Prince.   As ever, the quality of our dancers was first class and the routine, full of complicated moves and content, was inspired by a fashion show.  It was testament to the children’s hard work and concentration and Miss Young’s wonderful choreographic skills. They also looked great in their 1980s costumes; thanks to parents who helped out with these.  Well done to all involved… you were all amazing!

History Day

Thursday 23rd March was History Day at St Agnes'. Children and adults came to school dressed as characters from history who inspired them. As ever, the response was absolutely fantastic, with such a lot of thought, effort and creativity behind the costumes. The children had clearly done a lot of research and we all learned such a tremendous amount from each other. The variety was amazing, including characters from the worlds of engineering and science, sport, politics, fashion, music, art and entertainment, as well as a number of kings and queens, environmentalists and human rights activists, ranging from Ancient Egypt to the 2010s.

The whole school gathered at the start of the day and everyone had a chance to share their character with the rest of the school, as each class came out to the front in turn. From Reception Class upwards, every child was able to share information about their character. After that, there was a variety of activities going on during the rest of the day, including hot-seating, information swapping (speed-dating style!), biography writing, quizzes, sketching, role play and children presenting their research to the rest of the class, using a variety of media.

Thanks to parents and carers for their tremendous support, not only in helping the children with their amazing costumes, but for getting involved in research homework in preparation for the day.  

For more pictures, visit the History Day Gallery and check out the class pages.

The Spring Sing 2017

Our choir took part in the Spring Sing, held at The Sage in March.  They had been preparing their repertoire of songs during Choir on Tuesdays after school since Christmas. On the day itself, they met with 7 other school singing groups, from schools across Gateshead. After a quick rehearsal in the main concert Hall with the conductor, the massed choir performed the songs on the concourse to the audience of family, friends and passers by. The sound was magnificent, especially the parts when the choir sang in harmony! Thanks also to Mr Fitzsimons from the Spring Sing who joined us for some of our rehearsals and who sang with us on the day. 

Christmas @ St Agnes'

Following our Christmas productions, it was time for all of the other celebrations and activities.

Our Choir visited Addison Court in Crawcrook to sing carols and Christmas songs for the elderly residents. The audience loved their singing and afterwards, the children enjoyed sharing a drink, biscuit and a chat with the residents, including Ivy, aged 105.

On Tuesday 20th, we enjoyed our Christmas party, which included games and disco and, of course, party food.  On Wednesday, it was time to enjoy our delicious Christmas lunch. In the afternoon, the whole school walked down to church for our Carol Service. The church was packed as lots of family members joined us. It was a very joyful service and the singing was fantastic! On our final day, we dressed in Christmas jumpers etc. and enjoyed playing games with our friends.   Click HERE to view our Christmas gallery.

Whoops-a-Daisy Angel

Reception Class delighted an audience of friends and family with their wonderful performance of Whoops-a-Daisy Angel. The children looked magnificent in their costumes and remembered their lines and movements so well and sang the songs with real gusto! Their performance showed how much progress the children have made in their first term at school.

Click HERE  to visit the gallery.  

 

Midwife Crisis hits St Agnes'

Nothing to do with NHS reforms...but everything to do with Year 1 and 2's Christmas performance. It was a retell of the Christmas story with a difference, including a bossy midwife, a useless SAT NAV, but all the usual characters. The children sang the songs beautifully and spoke their lines clearly and confidently. It was a wonderful performance, enjoyed by a packed hall of family and friends, including Fr James, who was thrilled with the children's presentation. . Well done to them all!  Check out the photos at www.rytonian.com or click HERE to see our gallery.

The cast of Midwife Crisis

Aladdin Trouble

The junior pantomime production 'Aladdin Trouble' took place on 8th-10th December, featuring a cast of 90.  The children played to 3 packed houses of very appreciative friends and family who were wowed by the energy, amazing singing, fabulous dancing, super acting, not to mention the backdrop, props, sound and light.

Here are some comments from the audience:

"Can't believe this is a school production - it was so professional"

"Thoroughly entertaining - you should be so proud."

"The children never stopped smiling - it was wonderful!"

Congratulations to everyone involved.

Visit www.rytonian.com more photos and a great review or to view some of our photos of the dress rehearsal, click HERE

Travelling Cribs journey towards Christmas

As we journey through the season of Advent towards Christmas, our Travelling Cribs are spending the night in the homes of our school families. The cribs offer each family the opportunity to take a few moments out of the hectic pre-Christmas rush to focus on the real meaning of Christmas. 

 

Operation Christmas Child

Altogether, over 140 shoeboxes were loaded into a van to be taken to the collection point as well as a mountain of sweets and McDonalds toys. Thanks to the generosity of all those who contributed shoeboxes, so lovingly and thoughtfully prepared. 

Image result for children in need

Friday 18th November was Children in Need day. At St Agnes', we supported the appeal by wearing pyjamas, onesies etc. for school.  Everyone agreed that it was so warm and comfortable!

Some classes researched the history of Children in Need and found out about some of the fantastic causes that Children in Need helps. Overall we raised  an amazing £250, including £31 raised by Ruby Bentley and Lara Oswald (Year 4) selling their handicrafts.  

Crawcrook Library

Several classes have been to visit the library in Crawcrook. As well as looking at the books, they learned about the different ways that the library serves the whole community. Many of the children have strong feelings about the proposed closure of the library and have written letters to the Council.  We hope their views have some impact!

Football News

Our team were in action again on 9th November in the first round of the Bishop Cunningham Cup. We were the host school and played the games at Ryton and Crawcrook Albion's ground under floodlights.  We beat St Wilfrid's, Gateshead 3-0 and were beaten 2-1 by a HUGE St Patrick's Consett side. However, both games were great team performances and were the first outing for our new football strips. We look forward to the next round of the cup in the Spring.

Our squad wearing the new strip
Our squad wearing the new strip

Learning about Democracy

Gillian Bell from the Houses of Parliament came to visit St Agnes' on 30th September. She talked to Years 3-6 in an assembly all about the British political system; the House of Commons and House of Lords and the role of the Queen. She talked about the job of Members of Parliament and how laws are made. After the assembly, Years 5 and 6 learned how to debate. They had some very strong views!

Coffee and Cakes in aid of Macmillan Cancer Care

On September 30th, we raised money for Macmillan Cancer Care by selling and eating cakes!  Each class bought cakes and juice during the morning. During the afternoon, a good crowd of parents and grandparents joined us for coffee and cakes. Overall, we raised a super £440. Thanks to all for the fantastic array of delicious cakes!

Success for TEAM SA at the Ryton Show and Fair

The annual Ryton Show and Fayre took place on a baking hot Sunday 17th September at Ryton Cricket Club. As usual, local schools were invited to take part in the Ryton CC Schools Initiative Project. Schools are invited to compete in a variety of ways, including a cricket tournament, writing competition and various artistic classes. This year, St Agnes' really pulled out the stops, with entries from Years 4,5 and 6 in the short story writing competition, all children in Years 1-6 entering the made-made Birthday card class, a cricket team, which played on the day of the show itself and several individual entries from pupils including flower arrangements, creating creatures from fruit and vegetables and decorated biscuits. 

Although our team of cricketers lost to Ryton Juniors, they played very well together as a team, bearing in mind that it was the first time they had played together. We also had several impressive 'placed' items which  really boosted the overall points tally. Well done to the whole of TEAM SA for a brilliant effort and for winning the competition overall. As well as £500 prize-money, we were presented with the Jack Gray Memorial Trophy. This was all the more special for us, as Jack was a much-loved former pupil of St Agnes' who sadly died in 2013. We huge well done everyone - we're really proud of you!

St Agnes' Summer Festival

On Thursday 21st July, we brought the year to a close with a one-day festival, Glastonbury Style. Excitement began to grow on Wednesday, when the huge stage arrived. 

On the Thursday afternoon, a huge crowd of family and friends gathered in the school playground in the sunshine. Our outdoor concert featured a wide variety of acts from every class; there was singing, dancing, karate, poetry and guitar music. Just before the grand finale, the staff performed a dance routine, before the whole school came on stage and sang three songs to finish.

In the evening, over 350 people gathered for the Leavers' Barbecue. It was a lovely occasion. There was live music from Heartbeat, a rock and roll band and an encore from the teachers and the Year 6 Leavers, who performed two dance routines.  The whole day was a brilliant end to the school year!  

 

Click here to see all of the fantastic footage from this year's show!      

Visit www.rytonian.org for more photographs.

Sports Day

This took place on Tuesday 28th June. The weather stayed fine and the morning was a real success. The children competed in countries, with points counting also towards our school houses. Overall, Germany won. St Cuthbert's and St Aidan's won a rosette each, with St Cuthbert's the overall winner of the Sports day Cup. Afterwards, many adults stayed for our school family picnic. It was a lovely occasion.

Poetry Competition Winners

For the second year running, St Agnes' won the cluster Poetry Competition, hosted by St Philip Neri School. Following auditions in the classroom, the finalists, Carl Schenker and Evie Green were voted by their peers to represent the school at the finals. Despite stiff competition, Evie took third place and Carl was the overall winner. Well done for their fantastic, polished and entertaining performances.  

Our victorious performers at the Poetry Competition Finals
Our victorious performers at the Poetry Competition Finals

Keeping the Memory Alive

Our Year 5 and 6  classes took part in a Holocaust Memorial Event hosted by  St Augustine's School in Gateshead.  As well as learning about the story of Ann Frank, they listened to an amazing testimony from a member of the Jewish community, who talked about her parents' escape from the Nazis and how they settled happily in the North East. They thought about how life changed for the Jewish people and how they were persecuted. Before leaving, we joined children from other schools with time to reflect on what we had seen and said prayers about our hopes for the future, thinking carefully about refugees who are fleeing danger today.

Celebrating 90th Birthday of Queen Elizabeth II

We celebrated the great event of the Queen's 90th birthday.  Week beginning 5th June was a special history week at St Agnes'. Each class studied a decade from the last 90 years and all classes visited Newcastle's Discovery Museum to look at Newcastle and how it has changed over the years. We looked at major world events, fashion, music and everyday life. Life in Britain has certainly changed during the lifetime of the Queen!  On the Friday, we enjoyed a special fish and chip lunch followed by a street party during the afternoon.

Year 6 residential in Borrowdale

Great weather and great fun. Many if our Year 6 pupils spent a fantastic few days in the Lakes, based at Borrowdale Youth Hostel, taking part in a range of adventurous activities. Check out the Year 6 class page for more photos.

Go Girls!

Eight girls from Year 4/5 took part in a tournament of eighteen schools right across Gateshead at Watergate Park, near Lobley Hill. Although they didn't qualify beyond the group matches, they did very well indeed and improved enormously with each game. They all had a brilliant afternoon!

Year 4/5 Girls' Football Squad
Year 4/5 Girls' Football Squad

First Holy Communion

Congratulations to our Year 4 children who made their First Holy Communion on Sunday 8th May.  It was a lovely occasions, with the church full of family, friends and parishioners.  The whole class celebrated with a tea party on Monday.

First Holy Communion 2016
First Holy Communion 2016

VIPs attend NECTAR Opening

A few months ago, our Reception Class entered a competition to design a piece of artwork for the new ambulance station for NECTAR (North East Children's Transport and Retrieval Service.) We were extremely proud to hear that our very own Evie Shepherdson won. Last Friday, Blue group from Reception Class attended the launch of the new NECTAR ambulance station in the grounds of Newcastle General Hospital. The unit has two brand new ambulances specifically designed to look after and transport seriously ill children. We saw Evie's winning picture up on the wall, met the Lord Mayor and saw two Tyne Tees presenters cut the ribbon to officially open the station. The children were so well behaved and were an absolute credit to our school.   View the Chronicle’s coverage HERE

Evie and friends from Blue Group at the opening of the NECTAR ambulance station
Evie and friends from Blue Group at the opening of the NECTAR ambulance station

Snow in late April

We certainly didn’t expect to play this week’s Bishop Cunningham Cup games in the snow! Despite the horrible conditions, the tie went ahead at St Mark’s, Westerhope. Our players sadly didn’t manage to progress through, facing some long-established, quality sides in the semi-finals. However, it is a fantastic achievement in our first full season. Well done to all of our players for their enthusiasm and great attitude in their games this season.   

Bishop Cunningham Cup in snowy Westerhope
Bishop Cunningham Cup in snowy Westerhope

Holy Week

We celebrated Holy Week together in a series of liturgies telling the story of Jesus' journey from his triumphant entry to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday right through to the Resurrection.  On the Tuesday of Holy Week, Years 5 and 6 joined children from St Joseph's, Highfield for a very moving Stations of the Cross in church when the children from both schools told the story of Jesus' journey to the Cross through readings, drama and music. On Holy Thursday, the whole school gathered for three separate liturgies marking The Last Supper, The Crucifixion and The Resurrection.

Eggcellent Easter

We held our annual Easter Egg Competition during the last week of term. As ever, the judges had an almost impossible task as each and every entry deserved great credit for the amount of thought, time and skill that had gone into the wonderful creations.  The money raised from the entry fees, along with money raised from  a recent non-uniform day, is being sent to CAFOD's Make a Splash Lent campaign.  

Gateshead Dance Festival

Once again, our entry in the annual Gateshead Dance Festival was nothing short of spectacular. The children danced to The Rhythm of Life from 'Sweet Charity' and looked amazing in their 1960s hippy-inspired costumes.  The performance on the huge stage at The Sage Gateshead was polished and professional, especially with the fantastic lighting effects. The dancers performed their routine for the rest of the school and once again for their friends and family in the school hall.  Well done to all of our brilliant dancers and to Miss Young for her expert choreography, inspired by Bob Fosse.

Junior Ceilidh

Years 3-6 enjoyed trying to learn some traditional Ceilidh dances when Chris Little's band visited school to celebrate St Patrick's day.  The session involved using many different skills and was a huge amount of fun.  Reception Class even managed to squeeze in a quick dance as they came to the hall to see where the music was coming from! Chris wowed some of our Year 5 and 6 pupils by playing any tune they requested by ear on his fiddle!

World Book Day

As usual, there was a fantastic variety of book characters represented on World Book Day -we all looked amazing! During the afternoon, we held an  inter-house Book Quiz which involved children from each class.  It was eventually won by St Aidan's.  

Visit of poet Paul Cookson

This must be one of the highlights of the school year. Paul Cookson visited us on a three-day tour in the North east. He performed many of his hilarious poems and had most people literally crying with laughter!  He also held a workshop with Key Stage Two, when they wrote some poems together. He also visited our library and gave us a set of his books for all to enjoy.

"Bottoms, bottoms, children on your BOTTOMS!"

The Spring Sing @ The Sage

On 23rd February, the choir took part in The Spring Sing at The Sage, Gateshead. We joined with choirs from seven other schools to sing a set of songs all based on the theme of the environment. Some of the music was very tricky, including singing in three-part harmony. After a rehearsal with the conductor, Sharon Durant, we performed in the concourse, overlooking the River Tyne, to an audience of family and friends. The Mayor was also there to hear us. Our singing sounded brilliant and we all really enjoyed the day.

Members of the Choir

Football Cup Success

St Agnes is through to the second round of the Bishop Cunningham Cup. We hosted a first round group at Ryton and Crawcrook Albion's ground. The team put in three outstanding performances, beating St Philip Neri, St Wilfrid's, Gateshead and St Cuthbert's, Kenton to top the group and sail through to the next round with the last matches being played under floodlights.  Thanks to the Albion for hosting us so generously and to Carl Magnay, who plays for Hartlepool United, who gave up his time to referee the matches. Well done to our magnificent players and to manager Mr Ferguson. Who needs Pep Guardiola?

Celebrating the Feast of St Agnes

On 21st January, we celebrated the Feast Day of our patron saint, St Agnes. We all walked to church for Mass. Father James told us about St Agnes and how she is an inspiration for young people. He then blessed our new icon, which has been specially written by Mr Ferguson's mum.  Our new icon will live in our school chapel. During the offertory, some children from Year 4 offered our chain of over 200 prayers, written by everyone in school. In the first month of the Year of Mercy, we are thinking about those who need help in our prayers.  

Christmas Celebrations

We celebrated Christmas in a number of different ways, including our parties, Christmas Jumper Day and Christmas Lunch. Our Carol Service, held in St Agnes Church was a very happy and uplifting occasion. We told the story of the first Christmas in readings and music. The church was packed!

Whoops-a-daisy Angel

Reception Class presented us with their wonderful Nativity Play, Whoops-a-daisy Angel in front a packed hall of very proud family and friends.  They were all stars!

House Point Champions' Lunch

This term's House Points Champions were St Bede's, who won by a large margin. They celebrated by enjoying lunch together at Michaelangelo's. They finished off with a dance, in good old St Agnes' style! 

Cast of 120 perform Oliver

In December, Years 3-6 worked together in a wonderful production of Oliver.

A visit to The People's Kitchen

This Autumn, we collected food, blankets and toiletries for the friends of The People's Kitchen in Newcastle. The response was amazing!  In December, four boys from Year 6 went with Mr Laidler in the minibus to deliver our donations to the warehouse. The volunteers showed us around and explained where the food came from.  We were amazed just at the number of cans of baked beans!  In January, a volunteer, Mr Tom Baker, came to speak to us at our assembly. He thanked us for our donations and told us about the work of The People's Kitchen and how it helps give food and friendship to people in Newcastle.

Children in Need and Operation Christmas Child

On 13th November, we supported Children in Need by having a non-uniform day.  There were several Pudsey Bears that came to school for the day! In assembly, we thought about the different charities that are supported by Children in Need and how it fit in with our Statement of the Week, which was all about standing up for others. Two days later, all of our shoeboxes were collected by volunteers for The Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child. the were also several donated online by families. Thanks to all who contributed to these appeals.

Sainsbury's Games Day

We launched our work towards Sainbury's Sports Mark by holding an Autumn Sports Day.  The day began with an opening ceremony. Reception Class had made special flags which they paraded around the hall.  Our four new Sports Leaders, Benedict, Charlie, Emmi and Sophie were introduced. Throughout the day, each class completed a variety of activities, earning points for our school houses. At the end of the day, we held a closing ceremony where the results were announced. St Cuthbert's were awarded two rosettes and St Aidan's one.  The event closed with a presentation of R Kelly's "The World's Greatest" by Years 5 and 6. It was a great day where everyone competed hard and had a lot of fun. Our Sports Leaders did a fantastic job!

Hitting the high notes at St Mary's Cathedral

St Agnes' were asked to sing at the annual Diocesan Education Service Conference Mass. A choir, consisting of Years 4 and 5 and some Year 3, travelled to the magnificent cathedral in Newcastle. We were amazed at the beautiful church, especially the fantastic stained glass windows. The music was provided by Mr Allsopp on the piano, Mr Ferguson on guitar and violin by Mrs Drury and Mrs Millican (who used to be Miss Sweeney.) Mr Laidler conducted us to keep us all together. Francesca, Martha, Sophie and Niamh also sang solos in the psalm. After our rehearsal, we had a break and were given a drink and biscuit. Bishop Seamus celebrated the Mass, and there were other priests including Father James as well as almost 200 headteachers and deputy headteachers, parents and cathedral mass goers.  It was an amazing experience to sing at such a special Mass and overall, we sang very well. Many people told us how well we had done and we were given a round of applause at the end of Mass.  Mr Laidler was very proud of us.

by Members of the choir

We have received comments from some of the headteachers who were present:

"Just to say how much I enjoyed the music at Mass on Friday. It was quite remarkable; beautiful, simple...but above all 'liturgy enhancing' ."

"Wanted to let you know, the choir were absolutely fantastic. Well done!"

"Please congratulate the children on their fantastic singing. Your soloists were wonderful and I was so impressed by the descants - It was really moving."

 

Sports and Competition News

October was a very busy month for sporting events at St Agnes'. Congratulations to our Year 5/6 multi-sports squad who won this year's cluster tournament at St Thomas More. A fantastic achievement!  Well done to our Year 5/6 tag rugby squads who did well at the cluster tournament at Ryton RFC. Both teams progressed through to the third round and one came overall runners up… it’s a pity England didn’t do as well! Every class in school was also treated to a special tennis coaching session from Ian from Blaydon Tennis Club. In the same month, Sofia Martin (Year 6) who continues to excel at irish dancing, came an amazing 4th place in the All England Irish Dancing competition held last weekend. Sofia is now preparing for the World competition next year. 

Supporting Macmillan Cancer Care

Once again, the response you our Coffee and Cake Day was amazing! A huge thank you to all who supported our fundraiser in any way. As usual, the array of cakes, buns etc. was fantastic and there was a good number of people at our coffee after-noon. A special thanks to Archie Anderson (Year 5) who had devised a special game called ‘Taste and See’. It was a real hit with the children (and some adults) and made a lot of money for our total. Overall, we raised a magnificent £483. Well done everyone!

So long, farewell!

At the end of term, we said goodbye and thank you to our wonderful Year 6 pupils who are moving on to pastures new. We also said good bye to Miss Sweeney, our Year 3 teacher and Mrs Margaret Thompson, one of the cleaning team. who is retiring. We wish them all the very best in their new ventures and thank them for all they have contributed here at St Agnes'.

100% attenders

Well done to the children who achieved 100% attendance this year. There were over 30 medals awarded, which is a great improvement on last year.

 

House Point Winners' Lunch

Well done St Aidan's on being House Point Champions 2014-15. Their reward was lunch at Michaelangelo's. It ended up being quite a party!

Glastonbury comes to Crawcrook

On Monday 13th July, we staged an open-air concert in the school grounds. It was a celebration of our talents and achievements, performed on an awesome stage, with each child in school taking part.  It was  a feast of music and dancing, with a bit of poetry, karate and skipping thrown in -  a real variety show! Feedback from the audience was fantastic! It was brilliant fun to perfom in, organise or watch and there was a tremdously happy, community atmosphere. The concert came to a singing climax, with the whole school singing together on stage.

A visit from the Mayor and Mayoress of Gateshead

On 6th July, The Mayor and Mayoress of Gateshead, Cllr  and Mrs. Geddes visited school. We were also joined by Mr Don Sweeney, our Healthy Schools Consultant.  They arrived at 9:30 in time for our school assembly. At assembly, we celebrated all of this year's Healthy Schools work. Harrison, Amelia Charlotte and Benedict spoke to the school about everything that we had done to improve lunchtimes and make them more active. They talked about how our school councillors had gathered information form their classes and made important decisions about that work that was done.  Cllr Geddes then presented us with our Healthy Schools Gold Award.  We then announced the winning entry for our competition to design a logo for our dining room.  The Munch Box was proudly launched, to the delight of the winners, Lily and Rebekah from Year 3.

After assembly, our visitors officially opened our library which has just been refurbished. Our librarians gave them a guided tour and explained all about Accelerated Reader. They then went outside to watch the school using our new, improved playground facilities. Our visitors remarked on the fantastic behaviour,  enthusiasm and independance or the children. We all had extra play to celebrate!

Sports Day

Sports Day was a very successful event for the whole school, blessed by warm weather and good spirits. Many parents have fed back that they liked the format, especially infant and junior races runseparately—it certainly made each set of races more competitive. This year, the children competed in house groups. The winning infant house was St Aidan, the winning junior house was St Bede, and the overall winner of the St Agnes’ Sports Day Cup was St Aidan. Thanks to all who were able to come along to support the children—your presence was greatly appreciated. Thanks also to our wonderful Year 6 coaches who guided and encouraged our infant teams so enthusiastically and to Miss Pinnella for her organisation of the whole event.

First Holy Communions

On Sunday 7th May, a group of our Year 4 pupils celebrated their First Holy Communion in St Agnes' Church during the Sunday Mass.  It was a wonderful occasion. The children have been preparing for this great event since last Autumn and have shown great commitment and maturity throughout the course. At the celebration Mass, children read the scripture readings, sang the Psalm and carried the Offertory gifts. On the following Monday, they celebrated at a party with the rest of Year 4.

Our First Holy Communicants
Our First Holy Communicants

Poetry Competition Success

The final of this year’s cluster Poetry Competition took place at St Philip Neri School on 21st May. The children of Year 5 in each of the schools had learned set poems off by heart and performed them within the classroom. Two winners were chosen by vote and sent to the inter-school final - we were represented by Nico Croce, who performed ‘Alligator’ by Grace Nichols and Benedict Murphy, who performed ‘Matilda’ by Hilaire Belloc. The standard was extremely high and there were some very polished performances of the set poem and a poem of their own choice, especially from both of our pupils. However, at the end of the competition, the judges announced that due to his polished, theatrical and confident performance, their unanimous choice for the winner was Benedict. Congratulations to Benedict.  

Our Finalists
Our Finalists

Enjoying our new, improved playground

During the first week back after the Easter Holidays, we enjoyed fun in the sun, playing in our new, improved playground.  

Holy Week

We celebrated Holy Week together in school, beginning with our Palm Sunday Liturgy. The climax of the week was on Holy Thursday when we gathered together three times during the day to mark the events of the Triduum, the most important three days of the church's year, from the Last Supper, through to Jesus' Resurrection on Easter Day. They were very powerful liturgies. Some parents and members of the parish joined us. 

Eggstraordinary Competition

Our annual Easter egg competition was up to the usual high standard.  There were some wonderfully imaginative ideas and some brilliant art and craft skills on display. Miss Young jetted in especially from Dubai to take on the difficult job of judging the entries. All proceeds of the competition have been sent to CAFOD

Our Minibuses arrive!

After many weeks of waiting, our two minibuses have arrived. Our school councillors took a ride in one of them. It was a new and exciting experience to be the first St Agnes' pupils to put the bus through its paces.  During lunchtime, we boarded the bus and ventured to Blaydon.  We found the bus to be very spacious and comfortable. Each bus holds 17 people (15 students and 2 adults) This is a sound investment for the school's needs. The minibuses will be used for school trips such as swimming and museums.

Harrison McGregor and LucyFairlamb (Y6)

Hancock Museum Butterfly Wall


Hancock Museum Letter

 

When Year 3 went to the Hancock Museum at the beginning of this half term, they each paid £1 towards the visit.  This money went to the museum as a donation towards all of the great things that the Tyne and Wear Museums do for schools and the public.  As a result of our £30 donation, we will be getting a butterfly placed on the butterfly wall either outside of the cafe or at the top of the stairs.  This butterfly will be on display from the 24th April.

 

Karate Kids

Thirteen members of St Agnes' Karate Club took part in gradings on 22nd March at Wylam Institute. The examiner, Chris Yates,  gave them individual feedback on their performnace in front of all of the other students and the audience. They all passed and did very well indeed. They were a credit to their coaches, Jamie and Joe. Special congratulations to Ellie Maitland (Yr 4) who is our first black belt. A fantastic achievement!. 

Stargazing

It's not just the BBC who have star-gazing recently! We have our very own budding Professor Brian Coxes here at St Agnes'.  Year 2 have been learning all obout Space this half term. The highlight was an exciting evening trip to the wonderful Kielder Observatory. They set off after school on their adventure into one of the darkest areas in Europe, just south of the Scottish Border. The astromomers who met us there talked all about their work and shared some amazing images. The children then used two high-powered telescopes and were able to look at the Moon, Venus, Jupiter and Mars. The astronomers were absolutely amazed at Year 2's vast knowledge about the solar system.  On 20th March, they also enjoyed watching the solar eclipse. 

Dancing @ The Sage

A group of Year 5/6 children took part in this year's Gateshead Dance Festival, held at The Sage, Gateshead over three days and evenings.  This year's theme was 'movies.'  As ever, our dancers were fantastic!  Their programme was full of complicated content which they executed with style and precision! We received a good deal of very positive feedback. It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Well done to all of the performers and to Miss Pinnella who choreographed the dance and trained the group.  Also, some of our pupils entered a competition to design the cover of this year's programme. Two were highly commented, reaching the top 10 out of about 1,000 entries. Well done Holly Ramsden and Skye Kendall who were presented with prizes by Jonny Weetman from Vision for Education.

World Book Day

We joined children in schools around the world by celebrating World Book Day on 5th March.. We all got dressed as book characters and spent the day enjoying activities related to some of our favourite books. In the afternoon, the school came together for an inter-house Book Quiz, organsised by Mrs Hankin. It was very exciting and the teams displayed an amazing knowledge of class novels and reading general knowledge. St Cuthbert's House were the winners!   We also announced the winners of our Book Mark Competition.  

Europe Day

Monday 9th February was Europe Day at St Agnes'. Each class focused on a European country, learning a bit about the geography, landmarks, customs and culture and famous people. Mrs Innerdale spent the day in school and gave each class a language lesson. We didn't know she could speak so many languages!

The Pampered Chef comes to school

The Pampered Chef (aka Mrs Madl) visited with her roadshow. She showed us how to make some delicious recipes, using special kitchen utensils that are safe for children to use. With a bit of help from willing volunteers, she made Hot Veggie Dip and Baileys Cheesecakes. The food was absolutely delicious!

Disco Dance and Bounce

To raise money for a number of up-and-coming, exciting projects, we held a sponsored Disco Dance and Bounce in the hall. The school was buzzing with music, dancing and bouncing for the whole day. Each class took it in turn to come into the hall to dance or bounce on the bouncy castle to our favourite tunes. So far, an incredible £2400 has been raised! Well done everyone for their hard work and thank you to everyone who sponsored us.

Carol Service

At the end of term, we gathered as a community for our Carol Service in St Agnes' Church. It was a wonderful occasion. The church was absolutely packed as friends and parishioners joined us for our service of carols and readings. The roof almost lifted as we sang a mixture of new and traditional carols.

Panto Time

Key Stage Two pulled together in their production of Sleeping Beauty. It was a fantastic production, performed to 3 packed halls.

Operation Christmas Child

Many families made up a shoe box to send to this year's Operation Christmas Child appeal. There were so many donations that the collector had to come back and fill up his car again!  The boxes were taken to a central depot, where they were loaded onto trucks and taken to Belarus.

We sent 2 car loads of shoe boxes to Belarus
We sent 2 car loads of shoe boxes to Belarus

Children in Need

We supported Children in Need by dressing up in hero and super hero costumes. We had lots of fun on the day and raised £240 for so many good causes. .

The visit of the Music Workshop.

We always look forward to a visit from the Music Workshop Team.  This term, the theme of their workshop was the Wonderful World of Disney. As usual, there were lots of opportunities for participation as they performed favourite tunes from Disney films from the earliest days of Walt Disney, right up to the present. The final number was from 'Frozen',  so we all raised the roof with "Let it go, let it go..." 

We will Remember them

A group of Year 6 pupils gave up some of their breaktimes to contribute to a Garden of Reflection that was specially craeted in Saltwell Park. Over 10,000 wooden crosses wereplanted in a special area of the park to honour fallen soldiers from across the borough. Our pupils helped by writing the names and serial numbers of 250 soldiers, who were included in the garden, on the back of the crosses. For more details about the Saltwell Park garden, click HERE

On Tuesday 11th November at 11:00am, we gathered as a school community for our own Liturgy of Remembrance. Members of Year 6 led us in a short liturgy which included  two minute's silence with the Lost Post and Reveille.

On Wednesday 12th, we celebrated this half term’s Mass in St Agnes Church. At Mass, we thanked God for the lives of those who are special to us, including those who have died,  and brought forward their names in the offertory procession. They are now in our school chapel.

Library Developments

Over the past few weeks, we have been busy re-organising the school library. The books have been sorted and catalogued on our electronic system using bar codes. We have added over 800 new books to our stock. Now that the library has been re-organised, it is being used everyday and is getting very busy.

Multi-skills Champions!

Congratulations to our fantastic Year 5/6 Multi-skills squad who came first in this year's St Thomas More Cluster Tournament. They were up against some strong opposition in a tightly fought contest but managed to win it as a result of great skills and super teamwork. We are very proud of them!

 

Our Multi-skills Champions
Our Multi-skills Champions

Puzzle Challenge Day

The Happy Puzzle Company spent a day in school. We worked in groups to solve problems using our reasoning skills. We had to work together in teams, listening to each other, taking turns and trying things out. It was fantastic fun! After school, there was a family workshop when the adults came to join in the puzzle fun.

 

Coffee and Cakes for Macmillan Cancer Care

On Friday 26th September, we joined people all over the country in the World's Biggest Coffee Morning in aid of Macmillan Cancer Care, although here at St Agnes', it lasted all day!  The children enjoyed buying cakes during their morning breaktime while parents, grandparents and families came along in the afternoon. As well as the most amazing spread of donated cakes, buns and biscuits, some of our infant children had decorated biscuits and cakes to sell.  Thanks to all who supported the event and to all of those who provided such an amazing array of wonderful cakes!  We made an amzing £500!

 

Visitors from Kenya

We were delighted to welcome Miriam and Joshua, the founders of Neema Children's Home in Eldoret, Kenya. They came to a school assembly to tell us about their amazing work. They care for almost 50 children, many who suffer from HIV.  We watched a film they had made about Neema and they answered all of our questions on topics which included food and water, education and treating people with HIV. 

We have recently sent several hundred books from our library to Neema. We know that eventhough these books are a little old, they will be greatly appreciated by the children in Neema and will help them in their learning.