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i r ma ry ptimes

11 12 1 yrs

2 3 4 yrs

in Gloucestershire

Issue 127 14 Feb-4 Apr 2014

Also World Book Day Mother’s Day Party planning

Bond: your journey to 11+ success starts here... Page 4

Theatre • Arty Barty • Roundabout • Save money! 14 Glos cover Feb Half Term 2014.indd 3

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It’s risky to say this, with winter storms still in fresh our memory, but monthly forecasts hint at more spring-like weather over the February Half Term. That’s great news for families and for the area’s outdoor attractions whose play facilities await those youngsters hoping to let rip after being cooped up this winter. Full details in Roundabout (P.11) We also look at ways to give Mum that extra special Mother’s Day gift (P.20) and provide suggestions for that perennial parental need, party planning (P.17). Finally, World Book Day is a vital initiative and we look at how teachers, parents and children can really make the most of it (P6). Happy reading!

a ry ptriim mes 11 12 1


Steve Wright with the most fun ways to encourage reading this year.


Stephen Donovan discovers this year’s most exciting party ideas.



2 3 4


the editor

ershire 2014 in Gloucest Apr b 4A Feb14 F IIssue 127

Don’t leave it to the last minute to plan that special gift for your mother.

Also Day World Book Mother’s Day Party planning

ur Bond: yo ccess 11+ su journey to here... starts Page 4

Theatre • Arty


Save money! ndabout • Barty • Rou

Primary Times in Gloucestershire

Bristol News and Media, Temple Way, Bristol BS99 7HD. More information at

Editor Commercial director Advertising Distribution Design Production Main office

Mike Gartside Paul Kimberley 0117 934 3780 Caroline Stretton 0117 934 3737 Ruth Morris 0117 934 3730 Simon Butler 0117 934 3741 Cath Evans, Mike Gartside Emma Gorton, Ruth Wood 0117 942 8491

Primary Times is independently published and distributed free in Primary, Junior, Infant and Middle Schools throughout the former Avon area, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire. It is also available by subscription at £10 per year. Its aims are to inform families and children of current educational issues, forthcoming events, courses and attractions, and to give teachers, pupils and parents the opportunity to participate in the magazine by adding to its contents or joining in the competitions which we run. It is NOT our intention to publish any racist, sexist or politically biased material whatsoever. We also undertake not to carry any advertising which we would consider to be offensive to young families or harmful to the best interests of young children. While we make every effort to ensure information published is accurate, readers are encouraged to check details of all events in advance and neither Bristol News & Media nor its contributors are liable for the consequences of any errors. Primary Times would like to thank all the schools in the county for their assistance in distributing the magazine and their contributions to its contents. We would also like to thank all the advertisers who have supported this publication and therefore made it possible. Please support their endeavours when and where you can. The copyright on all written material, logos and advertising artwork produced by our studio remains with Primary Times or the relevant contributor. Primary Times currently publishes more than two million copies per issue under franchise.


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Find these amazing offers this issue!

Bristol Aquarium – Kids go free with voucher Cattle Country Park – 25% off with voucher Cotswold Farm Park – One child free with a paying adult Dick Whittington Farm Park – free entry for an adult with a paying child Explore Learning – Two weeks’ free tuition when you join in February Samurai Martial arts – Free Karate trial classes Table Table – Kids eat free Glitter and Gloss – Daughter goes free with voucher FEBRUARY HALF TERM 2014


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The Gloucestershire 11+ journey has changed


he seven grammar schools in Gloucestershire have made the joint decision to change the format of the 11+ tests. For 2014 they will be moving to the University of Durham’s CEM examination. This means that children sitting the exam this year will have a different journey to the pupils of years gone by. The 11+ is no longer a compulsory exam taken during a child’s

final year at primary school. But, in recent years, it has developed into a much-discusssed entrance exam for the county’s few remaining grammar schools. This new test style has been reported in the media as a ‘tutorproof’ test. Yet parents across the county are now searching for any

open on Monday 2 June 2014 with children sitting their exam on Saturday 13 October 2014. In contrast to the traditional format of GL Assessment’s Verbal Reasoning exams, the two CEM papers that children will now have to sit are each approximately 45 minutes in length. These new

TRY A QUESTION YOURSELF: Sam’s birthday is 24 September. If 10 October is a Tuesday, on what day of the week was Sam’s birthday? ANSWER Sunday

Bond 11+ Planner App



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available samples and seeking the support of parents whose children have previously sat CEM exams to help prepare their own girls and boys for their upcoming test. A number of these familiarisation booklets (samples) are available on the websites of schools which have already made the change. However, CEM tests offer a considerable variety of testing and can differ from county to county, and from year to year. The new exam format for Gloucestershire’s entrance exam is also accompanied by a change in application timings for 2015 admission. Registration will now

papers will test children on their skills of verbal, non-verbal and numerical reasoning in a multiple choice format, with questions and answers presented and completed in the same paper. Deemed a skills-based exam, the CEM will require a high level of comprehension skills from children, as well as advanced vocabulary for the question types included. Comprehension practice and additional reading can help build these core skills. Resources developed for the GL Assessment 11+ Verbal Reasoning and Non-verbal Reasoning will still provide children with practice for

Bond Assessment Papers

these elements of the CEM test. However, they will not be an exact match for the questions they will face in the exam room. The 11+ experts at Bond have already started to support those in 11+ regions facing the new CEM exam. Bond’s range of practice material is supported by a selection of CEM-style 11+ mock test papers, available in stores and online. Alongside the paper practice, Bond Online, an interactive 11+ practice resource, now includes CEM-style questions to help familiarise your child with the new question-types they will experience in the county’s new test this autumn. Good luck! Bond 11+


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Worl d Boo Thur Day k www sday 6 M .worl dboo arch com kday.

Read the

World Book Day returns on Thursday 6 March, offering a wealth of reading-related revelry for teachers, parents and pupils alike. Steve Wright reports.


or the 17th year running this March children across the UK will celebrate the joy of reading – and that rare pleasure of losing yourself inside the world of a much-loved book. World Book Day, which falls on Thursday 6 March this year, is an annual celebration of authors, illustrators, books and – most importantly – of reading. Designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, the day is now marked in over 100 countries around the world. “Our main aim is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading,” explains World Book Day director Kirsten Grant. “Reading for pleasure is a hot topic on the literacy agenda, as it not only creates a love of reading in young people, but makes a huge contribution to their educational attainment. The Institute of Education’s 2013 study into the role of reading found that children who read for pleasure are likely to do significantly better at school than their peers.” So, how does the 6


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big day work – and what can you do? In the weeks leading up to 6 March, the organisers of the UK and Ireland World Book Day have been sending packs of book tokens to schools around the country. More than 14 million book tokens went out this year – one for nearly every child in the country. Kids can take their voucher to a participating local bookseller and can exchange it for any one of eight exclusive, brand new £1 books anytime throughout March. Among the £1 titles for primaryage children this year are ‘Fun with the Worst Witch’ (ages 5-7) by Jill Murphy, packed with puzzles and magical mayhem to keep even the Worst Witch out of trouble. Elsewhere, Lauren St John’s ‘The Midnight Picnic: A Laura Marlin Mystery’ (ages 5-7) sees the young sleuth using her formidable powers of deduction to outwit an enemy who may not even exist. For slightly older children (aged 7-9), meanwhile, Terry Deary and Martin Brown’s ‘Horrible Histories: Terrible Trenches’ uncovers what life was really like in the trenches of World War I, from foul food to legions of lice and other amazing facts. However, World Book Day itself has more to offer. Along with the tokens, the organisers send out

World Book Day Resource Packs (ageranged into Nursery/ Pre-School, Primary and Secondary) full of ideas, activities and more information about how to get involved. On the WBD website you’ll find lesson plans, reading lists and more for each of this year’s £1 book authors, as well as oodles of printable resources for other popular books, authors and brands. You’ll also find devised lesson plans around all three of the £1 titles mentioned above. The ‘Horrible Histories’ lesson plan, for example, includes a role-play session imagining what life was like in the trenches from the perspective of a rat, a section on wartime slang and a workshop for creating a cartoon sequence in the ‘Horrible Histories’ style. There’s also a list of 20 suggested WBD activities on the site. These include, encouraging children to perform one or more of their favourite stories. Julia Donaldson, best-selling author of ‘The Gruffalo’, shares her suggestions of books to perform along with helpful advice on her website Or why not hold a class-by-class parade of characters from your school’s favourite titles? Staff can dress up too – Gillian Cross’s

‘The Demon Headmaster’ and the redoubtable Miss Trunchbull from Roald Dahl’s ‘Matilda’ have proved popular choices. Another fantastic extra for this year is ‘The Biggest Book Show on Earth’, a brand new video piece delving into the hows and whys of successful writing and illustration, starring World Book Day authors including Terry Deary and ‘Jill Murphy’ and introduced by CBBC stars Dick and Dom, which teachers can download from the website to watch at a time to suit them and their class. As Kirsten points out, “World Book Day is all about getting kids closer to the books and authors they already love and letting them discover more books and authors they’ll love every bit as much in the future.” Booksellers participating in the £1 book scheme W: bookshopsearch World Book Day resources W: resources Other activity ideas W: fundraise/schools/world-bookday-2014


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GLOUCESTERSHIRE THE BACON THEATRE Dean Close School, Shelbourne Road, Cheltenham GL51 6HE. 01242 258002, Down the Rabbit Hole Wed 26 Feb, 4pm. £10 (adults)/£5 (children) • Dot-to-Dot Drama present their version of the wellloved tale especially for primary school aged children. How to Catch a Star Tue 18 Mar, 10.30am. £8.50 (adult)/£7.50 (child)/£30 (family) • Following the success of The Owl who was Afraid of the Dark, children’s theatre company Blunderbus presents this funny and gentle retelling of Oliver Jeffers’ bewitching story. Suitable for ages 3-7. Cinderella Sat 29 Mar, 7.30pm. £18.50 (adult)/£17.50 (conc)/ £13 (child) • A mistreated young girl, two comical ugly step-sisters, a glass slipper and a handsome young prince come together in Vienna Festival Ballet’s latest “dazzling” ballet. BAYSHILL UNITARIAN CHURCH HALL Royal Well Lane, Cheltenham, GL50 3ET. 01242 263283. Puppet & Toy Theatre Festival Tue 18-Sat 22 Feb, 10.30am & 2pm (Sat 11am & 3pm), £3.50/£2.50 (Sat £4/£3) • Join the award-winning Treasure Trove Puppet Company for exciting daily puppet shows as they tell ‘The Story of the Willow Pattern Plate’ as well as performing classics ‘Cinderella’ and ‘Pinocchio’. There’s also the opportunity to take part in a puppet making workshop on Thursday. EVERYMAN THEATRE Regent Street, Cheltenham GL50 1HQ. 01242 572573, www. Fiddler on the Roof Tue 4-Sat 8 Mar, 7.45pm. 2pm (Thu, Fri and Sat). £26-£34 (adult)/£26-£32 (conc) • Tevye has always stuck by his traditions but suddenly his headstrong daughters decide that they want to marry for love. High Society brings you a new production of one of the world’s favourite love-story musicals. Hear the People Sing Sun 9 Mar, 7pm. £21-£23 • The Lions Club of Cheltenham brings you an all-musical show featuring the WestEnders, one of the country’s leading musical theatre compa8 FEBRUARY HALF TERM 2014

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The Essence of Ireland, Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury, Sun 23 Mar

nies formed by past members of the West End production of Les Miserables. Propeller – The Comedy of Errors Tue 18, Fri 21 & Sat 22 Mar, 7.45pm (Tue & Fri), 2pm (Sat). £14-£26 (adult)/£17-£24 (conc) • In Shakespeare’s smartest and most farcical play two sets of estranged twins, separated at birth, find themselves in the same city 25 years later with hilarious consequences. Propeller – A Midsummer Night’s Dream Wed 19 Mar, Thu 20 Mar & Sat 22 Mar, 7.45pm. Matinee on Thu at 2pm. £14£26 (adult)/£17-£24 (conc) • Propeller’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream has enchanted packed houses all over the world. In Shakespeare’s most magical play, love and illusion collide when two pairs of lovers become entangled in fairy mischief on the eve of a royal wedding. The Stars of Strictly Come Dancing Fri 25 Apr, 2pm & 7.45pm. £27 (adult)/£25 (conc) • Pasha and Katya bring you their “spectacular” brand new ballroom and Latin show. Promises to be a carnival of music, dance, costumes and sparkles. Hetty Feather Tue 29 Apr-Sat 5 May, 10.30am (Wed &Thu), 2pm (Sat & Sun), 7pm (Tue, Fri, Sat). £15 • From best-selling author Jacqueline Wilson, the tale of plucky Hetty Feather is brought to life on stage by award winning script writer Emma Reeves. Suitable for ages 7+. ROSES THEATRE The Roses, Sun Street, Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire GL20 5NX. 01684 295074, Tweedy Wed 19 Feb, 2pm. £8-£10 • A clown who gives in to society and

gets a real job in a Lost Property office. Could this be where Tweedy finds himself? Pocket Henry V Tue 11 Mar, 7pm, £9-£13 • Shakespeare brought to life in Propellor Theatre’s dynamically abridged pocket-sized show for all audiences. Essence of Ireland Sun 23 Mar, 2.30pm & 7.30pm. £22.50 • A celebration of all things Irish told through music, song and dance. That’ll Be the Day Wed 26 & Thu 27 Mar, 7.30pm. £23 • This rock ‘n’ roll spectacular features hits from the 1950s, 60s and 70s, plus loads more zany comedy routines! Bolshoi Live: Marco Spada Sun 30 Mar, 4pm. £12-£15 • Recreated especially for the Bolshoi by French choreographer Pierre Lacotte, this fresh and cheerful ballet recounts the adventures of a bandit with a big heart, who claims to be an aristocrat. The Sooty Show Sat 5 Apr, 11am & 2.30pm. £9.50-£12 • Direct from cITV, Sooty heads to town in a “fabulous” new show. Jungle Book Tue 15 Apr, 2pm. £7 • Riverbank Productions invite you to the Indian jungle to meet the man cub Mowgli who is brought up by a family of wolves.

FURTHER AFIELD THE BRISTOL HIPPODROME St. Augustine’s Parade, BS1 4UZ. 0844 871 3012, www.atgtickets. com/bristol Tap Factory Mon 24 Feb, 7.30pm. £23.40-26.90 • Promises to be a dazzling production, showing many genres of dance in an urban

setting. Dance ‘Til Dawn Tue 25 Feb-Sat 3 Mar, 7.30pm. 2.30pm (Wed & Sat). £17.90-£48.90 • Strictly Come Dancing favourites Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace are back with a brand new show. Happy Days the Musical Mon 3-Sat 8 Mar, 7.30pm. Matinees on Wed and Sat 2.30pm. £15-£39.50 • Relive the 1950s American television series with this fun musical starring Sugababes’ member Heidi Range. THE BRISTOL OLD VIC King Street, Bristol BS1 4ED. 0117 987 7877, uk Minotaur Tues 1–Wed 9 Apr, 10am & 1pm (1-3 Apr), 11am & 3.30pm (5, 7, 8 & 9 Apr), £12/£7 • This brand new play has been created in close consultation with KS2 children and staff, telling the story of the well-known Greek legend with a surprise twist. That Catherine Bennett Show Thu 20-Sat 22 Feb, 3pm, £12 (adult)/£7 (conc) • Sick of the bad female role-models pop-music has to offer, 9-year-old Taylor and her Auntie Bryony created Catherine Bennett, a new breed of pop-star who can be admired for all the right reasons. Bryony Kimmings brings Catherine to life in this empowering and engaging show. Ages 6-9. COLSTON HALL Colston Street, Bristol BS1 5AR. 0844 887 1500, www.colstonhall. org Dinosaur Zoo Wed 19 Feb, 11am & 2pm. £13.44-£16.13 • Direct from Australia, this show by production company Erth brings these awesome prehistoric creatures to the stage, up close and personal. PRIMARY TIMES

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ROUNDABOUT Your ultimate family diary of what’s on, where & when

Deadlines: List your school’s events in Primary Times for free. We work a half-term in advance so we’re now collecting information for April and May 2014: deadline Mon 3 Mar. If your event is to raise funds for a school or charity, and is open to the public, please let us know. E: PLEASE CHECK BEFORE YOU TRAVEL While we make every effort to ensure these listings are accurate and up to date, event information can sometimes change after we’ve gone to press. Please check with the venue or organiser before you set off to an event to make sure it’s going ahead as planned . . . and tell them you saw it in Primary Times!

FEBRUARY ONGOING OTTER TALK Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, GL2 7BT. 01453 891223, www.wwt., 11.30am & 3pm, included in admission • Meet Slimbridge’s friendly family of Otters: Flo, Minnie and Ha Ha and hear a talk as they tuck into a tasty fish supper. UNTIL SAT 22 FEB DECOY DEMONSTRATIONS Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, GL2 7BT. 01453 891223, uk, 2pm, normal admission charges apply • How do you catch a duck with a dog? Find out as you watch Slimbridge Wetland Centre’s very own four-legged friend assist with

conservation work, catching birds to ring in decoy nets. UNTIL MON 10 MAR JEREMY HOUGHTON IN SLIMBRIDGE Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, GL2 7BT. 01453 891223, uk, 9.30am-5pm • Well-known painter of flamingoes, Jeremy Houghton, will be exhibiting a range of watercolours and oils that capture the colour and exuberance of the enigmatic birds, at Slimbridge Wetland Centre in 2014. UNTIL SUN 16 MAR WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR Nature in Art, Wallsworth Hall, Sandhurst lane, Sandhurst, Gloucestershire, GL2 9PA. 01452 731422, uk, Tues-Sun, 10am-5pm, normal admission charges apply • A fascinating collection of photographs showing nature at its very best will be featured in this prestigious exhibition. FRI 14 FEB ADVANCED BIRDER Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, GL2 7BT. 01453 891223, uk, 8am, £27 • For those looking to take their bird watching to the next level, this in-depth lesson helps enthusiasts to assess fine details such as plumage, weather conditions and habitats. FRI 14-SUN 16 FEB CHELTENHAM FOLK FESTIVAL Cheltenham Town Hall, Imperial Square, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 1QA. 0844

Review Here for the steer! Cattle Country Adventure Park I arrived at Cattle Country Adventure Park not really knowing what to expect and was greeted by a vast array of activities available for children of all ages. On a rainy day there are two indoor play barns and a cosy café to sit and have lunch. If the sun is shining there are trampolines, a boating lake, a climbing net, a castle to explore and a fantastic splash pool. There is also plenty to keep toddlers entertained including a softplay area, a sand pit and an outdoor play area. Then there are the animal encounters. Children and adults can have great fun walking around the grounds and meeting the animals. Interactive information points along the way tell you more about the animals and if little legs get tired, there’s a miniature train to hop on and deliver you back to the picnic field. We thoroughly enjoyed our day at Cattle Country Adventure Park. (Ruth Morris)


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Half term activities at Chedworth Roman Villa, Sat 15-Sun 23 Feb.

576 2210, £80/£40/£215 adult/ child/family (weekend ticket) • Now in its 18th year, this celebration of folk music has performances from over 20 talented acts over the course of the weekend. SAT 15 FEB A DAY WITH BIRD OF PREY John Moore Museum, 41-42 Church Street, Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, GL20 5SN. 01684 297174,, 10am-1pm & 2-5pm, £3 (adult)/£2 (child)/ £8 (family) • The museum welcomes back J.R.C.S. Falconry which brings a selection of birds of prey from its extensive flock. SAT 15 FEB COTSWOLD FARM PARK RE-OPENING Cotswold Farm Park, Guiting Power, nr. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL54 5UG. 01451 850 307, www.cotswoldfarmpark. • Visit the park when it reopens for the spring, just in time for the start of lambing season. SAT 15-SUN 23 FEB HALF TERM ACTIVITIES Chedworth Roman Villa, Yanworth, near Cheltenham, GL54 3LJ. 01242 890256, www., 10.30am-4pm, free events but normal admission charges apply • Be the first to visit the villa in 2014, as the historic site opens for the 150th Anniversary Year of its Victorian Discovery. Half-term art and craft activities for children, with a small charge for materials. SAT 15 FEB-SUN 2 MAR GET YOUR 5-A-DAY Bristol Zoo Gardens, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 3HA. 0117 974 7300, • £5 entry for kids when you bring along fruit

and vegetables to feed the animals. Choose from broccoli, lettuce, pears, apples or carrots. SUN 16 FEB BRISTOL ROCKS! Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1RL. 0117 922 3571,, 10am - 4pm, free • Rocks and fossils take over the museum, with dressing up, handling specimens, local specialist groups and activities. MON 17- THU 27 FEB AN EGG-CITING DAY OUT At-Bristol, Anchor Road, Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5DB. 0845 345 1235,, drop-in sessions throughout the day, free with standard admission • Enjoy the egg-cellent visitors as At-Bristol hosts some hatching eggs in Live Lab. Visit the new arrivals and you may be lucky enough to catch them as they hatch! TUE 18 FEB BECOME A ROMAN EMPORER Lawrence Weston Community Farm, Saltmarsh Drive, Bristol, BS11 0NJ. 0117 938 1128, www., 2-4pm, free • Discover more about Roman Life - handle real Roman objects, dress as a Romano-Britain or become an emperor by making a laurel wreath crown. WED 19 FEB HISTORY OF THE HIGHWAYMEN Yate Heritage Centre, Church Road, Yate, Bristol, Avon, BS37 5BG. 01454 862200,, 10.30am-12pm & 1.30-3pm, free • Discover the true history of the Gloucestershire highwayman from 250 years ago with this exciting history workshop. Make your own mask and highwayman tri-corn hat. Ideal » FEBRUARY HALF TERM 2014


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Open morning

Saturday 8th March for entry aged 11 and over Generous scholarships and means tested bursaries available Please contact admissions Rendcomb, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 7HA


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A week of snowdrops, Batsford Arboretum, Sat 22 Feb - Sun 2 Mar.


for children between 5 and 12, booking essential. WED 19 FEB MEDIEVAL MAYHEM M-Shed Dockside, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN. 0117 352 6600,, 10am-4pm, free • Discover the crafts of medieval Bristol, from spinners and weavers to dyers and potters. Handle real objects and join in with medieval-inspired activities. THU 20 FEB ORCHESTRAL MASTERWORKS Cheltenham Town Hall, Imperial Square, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 1QA. 0844 576 2210,, 7.30pm. The BBC National Orchestra of Wales performance presents a programme of masterworks from the 18th and 20th centuries conducted by Thomas Sendergard. THU 20 & MON 24 FEB, THU 6, MON 10 & THU 20 MAR BEHIND THE SCENES AT CHEDWORTH Chedworth Roman Villa, Yanworth, Nr. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL54 3LJ. 01242 890256, uk/chedworth. • Discover the ‘villa behind the scenes’ through a new talks and tours programme introducing you to the conservation staff and volunteers.

the University of Bath Physics Department for an hour of fun filled ‘shocks’. Find out about electricity and what magnets have got to do with it. Organised by the Bath Royal Literary & Scientific Institution. Booking essential. SAT 22 FEB BE ARTRAGEOUS Arnolfini, 16 Narrow Quay, Bristol, BS1 4QA. 0117 917 2300, www., 1-5pm, free • Join the learning team on the last Saturday of every month to explore Arnolfini’s exhibitions and events through exciting and engaging activities for families to do together. SAT 22-SUN 23 FEB NEW TESTAMENT GREEK Gloucester Cathedral, College Green, GL1 2LR., • A weekend course for complete beginners interested in learning more about this ancient language with tutor Paul Pritchard MA, BA, PhD. SAT 22 FEB- SUN 2 MAR A WEEK OF SNOWDROPS Batsford Arboretum, Batsford, Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, GL56 9AB, 01386 701441, • Weather-permitting, snow-

ROUNDABOUT drops should be at their absolute peak in the arboretum. Wander through drifts of aconites and snowdrops and spoil yourself with lunch or afternoon tea in the Garden Terrace Café.

Gardens Scheme. Entrance money will go towards the nursing, caring and gardening charities chosen by the NGS and is a great way to support local good causes.

SUN 23 FEB NGS JENNER’S GARDEN OPENING Dr. Jenner’s House & Garden, The Chantry, Church Lane, Berkeley, Gloucestershire, GL13 9BN. 01453 810 631, www.jennermuseum. com, 11am-4pm, £3.50 (adult)/ free (child) • Once again the Jenner Trust opnen’s its garden for charity as part of the National Gardens Scheme “Open for Charity” programme!

WED 5 MAR BADMINTON JUNIOR SCHOOL OPEN MORNING Badminton Junior School, Westbury Road, Westbury-onTrym, Bristol, BS9 3BA. 0117 905 5271,, • Parents are invited to experience the ethos of the school first hand.

FRI 28 FEB-SUN 9 MAR BATH LITERATURE FESTIVAL Various venues throughout Bath. 01225 462231,, prices and events tbc • Although the Children’s Literature Festival isn’t until September, there are a few highlights for lovers of young fiction and poetry including appearances by former children’s laureate Michael Rosen and storyteller Chrissie Weltike. .


SAT 8 MAR BADMINTON SCHOOL EARLY YEARS OPEN MORNING Badminton Junior School, Westbury Road, Westbury-on-

SUN 2 MAR BATH HALF MARATHON 2014 Great Pultney Street, Bath. 01225 422255, • This established charity fundraiser returns with a variety of runs for all ages. Send a Cow is the official Fun Run charity, the National Osteoporosis Society will be local charity of the year and Teenage Cancer Trust is the featured appeal. They join the lead charity for the event, breast cancer awareness organisation CoppaFeel!

Former children’s poet laureate Michael Rosen at Bath Literature Festival, Mon 3 Mar.

SUN 2 MAR NATIONAL GARDENS SCHEME OPEN DAY Batsford Arboretum, Batsford, Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, GL56 9AB, 01386 701441, • A great day for visiting beautiful Batsford as they throw open the gates in aid of the National

FRI 21 FEB NORTH AMERICAN INDIANS Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1RL. 0117 922 3571, uk, 10am-1pm, free • Find out about North American Indians through the museum’s collections, handle real objects and discover treasures in its stores. FRI 21 FEB GET YOUR HANDS ON SCIENCE Saltford Library, Bath Road, Saltford, Bristol, BS31 3DJ. 01225 312084,, 10.30am • Join students from PRIMARY TIMES

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SAT 8 MAR A SPLENDIFEROUS OCCASION Kings Weston House, Kings Weston Lane, Bristol, BS11 0UR., tickets available from www., 10am-4pm, £10 (adult)/free (child) • Two local businesswomen are holding a day of beauty and style demonstrations to raise money for Penny Brohn Cancer Care.

Learn New Testament Greek, Gloucester Cathedral, Sat 22-Sun 23 Feb.

Trym, Bristol, BS9 3BA. 0117 905 5271,, • Parents are invited to experience the ethos of the school first hand. SAT 15 MAR MOSAIC MAKING WORKSHOP Chedworth Roman Villa, Yanworth, Nr. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL54 3LJ. 01242 890256,, 10am, £50 • Join this special workshop with a professional mosaic maker Lawrence Payne and create your own mosaic for your home, just as the Romans would have decorated the Villa. Booking essential. SAT 15 MAR HOW DO WIND FARMS WORK? M-Shed Dockside, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN. 0117 352 6600, 1-5pm, free • Design your own wind farm and have a go at a table-top strategy game. Part of Science and Engineering Week. » FEBRUARY HALF TERM 2014


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Only the Play Barn is open during Feb half term


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FRI 11 APR DOWN ON THE FARM Victoria Art Gallery, Bridge Street, Bath, BA2 4AT, 01225 477233,, 10am-12pm & 1.30pm-3pm, £4 per child • Explore the farmyard painting and use watercolour pencils to create an animal picture. Make a mini model farm too. 6 to 11 years.

SAT 15-SUN 23 MAR A HOST OF GOLDEN DAFFODILS Batsford Arboretum, Batsford, Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, GL56 9AB, 01386 701441, www. • The perfect time to see the daffodils in all their spring glory. Wander through swathes of yellow and enjoy the spring sunshine from beneath the tree canopy. SAT 15 MAR-TUES 15 APR SPRING INTO ACTIVITY The University of the West of England, Frenchay Campus, Coldharbour Lane, Bristol, BS16 1QY. 0117 328 6263, www. • A chance to take part in free sport activities. Sports clubs and leisure centres across the West of England have come together to offer free open sessions, social activities and family fun days to anyone who would like to give them a go. MON 17-FRI 21 MAR NATIONAL SCIENCE & ENGINEERING WEEK At-Bristol, Anchor Road, Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5DB. 0845 345 1235,, £1. • At-Bristol takes over the top floor of the museum to put on the biggest science show it’s ever attempted, hosting spectacular demonstrations for Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 that explore invention and discovery. WED 19-SUN 30 MAR RICHARD III, DUKE OF GLOUCESTER Gloucester City Museum & Art Gallery, Brunswick Road, Gloucester, GL1 1HP. 01452 396 131, www.thecityofgloucester., event included in admission, book in advance • After garnering headlines around the world, the 3D reconstruction of Richard III’s head is exhibited in Gloucester City Museum. SAT 22-SUN 23 MAR RIDE A CRANE M-Shed Dockside, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN. 0117 352 6600, 12-5pm • Experience a working crane on the dockside. Visitors are given a taste of the harbourside’s industrial heritage as part of National Science and Engineering Week. Go Aloft on the ss Great Britain, Bristol, from Sat 5 Apr

Richard III, Duke of Gloucester, Gloucester City Museum & Art Gallery, Wed 19-Sun 30 Mar.

SAT 22 MAR- SUN 2 NOV NEW WORLD, OLD MAPS American Museum in Britain, Claverton Manor, Claverton, Bath, Avon BA2 7BD, 01225 460503,, £10/£5.50 • A rotating display of the acclaimed historic map collection formed by Dallas Pratt, cofounder of the American Museum. FRI 28-SUN 30 MAR GLOUCESTER RESIDENTS WEEKEND The Cross, Gloucester, GL1 1PD. 01452 396572, • A perfect opportunity for local people to explore, experience and enjoy their city, with many savings and special offers over the weekend. SAT 29 MAR WE ARE FAMILY Arnolfini, 16 Narrow Quay, Bristol, BS1 4QA. 0117 917 2300, www., 1-5pm, free • Join the learning team on the last Saturday of every month to explore Arnolfini’s exhibitions and events through exciting and engaging activities for families to do together. SUN 30 MAR FLOWERS FOR MOTHERS’ DAY Batsford Arboretum, Batsford, Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, GL56 9AB, 01386 701441, www. • What better way to show Mum how much you love her than with a visit to Batsford Arboretum at the height of spring? Mum’s get free entry to the arboretum. SUN 30 MAR MATRONALIA – ROMAN MOTHERS’ DAY Chedworth Roman Villa, Yanworth, Nr. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL54 3LJ. 01242 890256, uk/chedworth, normal admissions charges apply • Celebrate Mothering Sunday in Roman style. Bring your mum along for a special visit to see the Legio II re-enactors and demonstrations. Create a special gift for your mum at the craft activities (a small charge applies)..


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APRIL SAT 5 APR LATIN FOR BEGINNERS Gloucester Cathedral, 12 College Street, Gloucester, GL1 2LX. 01452 731113, • A course for complete beginners that offers an introduction to Latin and its influence on English, led by experienced tutor George Sharpley in the beautiful surroundings of Gloucester Cathedral. FROM SAT 5 APR GO ALOFT ss Great Britain, Great Western Dockyard, Gasferry Road, Bristol, BS1 6TY. 0117 926 0680, www. • Step into the shoes of a Victorian sailor and climb the huge mainmast of the ss Great Britain - a new experience opening today. SUN 6 APR ANIMALS CRAFTED FROM FELT Slimbridge Wetland centre, Bowditch, Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, GL2 7BT. 01453 891223,, 10am-3.30pm, £36 • Learn how to make beautiful felt animals in this four hour needle-felting workshop. SUN 6 APR FINGERTIP EXPLORERS Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1RL. 0117 922 3571, uk, 10am-1pm, free • Touch but don’t look! Can you detect the mystery object without peeping? An intriguing game of touch brings history to life. Suitable for 7+ TUE 8 APR DISCOVER PAPUA NEW GUINEA Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1RL. 0117 922 3571, uk, 10am-1pm, free • Make your own feather finery and explore the museum’s collections of objects from Papua New Guinea, including a visit to the stores.

SAT 12 APR TOY STORIES M-Shed Dockside, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN. 0117 352 6600, www.mshed. org. 11am-4pm, free • Play with a range of toys and games from generations past and use them as inspiration to make your very own old-fashioned toy. MON 14 APR CURIOUS COINS Roman Baths, Abbey Churchyard, Bath, BA1 1LZ. 01225 477785, www., 10am-1pm, 2pm4pm, • Investigate Roman coins and create a coin to take home. THU 17 APR FAMILY FUN: NATIVE AMERICAN JEWELLERY American Museum in Britain, Claverton Manor, Claverton, Bath, Avon BA2 7BD, 01225 820866, workshops@americanmuseum. org,, 1-4pm (drop-in), included in garden only admission • Get creative with recycled materials and make your own replica jewellery inspired by the museum’s Native American collections. THU 17 APR OLD AGE PRINTS M-Shed Dockside, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN. 0117 352 6600, 11am-4pm, free • Use the historic printing machine to make your own Easter card, inspired by the unique collection of objects from Bristol’s chocolate industry. FRI 18-MON 21 APR EASTER YARN BOMBING TRAIL American Museum in Britain, Claverton Manor, Claverton, Bath, Avon BA2 7BD, 01225 820866, workshops@americanmuseum. org,, 12-5pm, included in garden-only admission • Grab a trail sheet and see if you can find all of the knitted delights decorating the grounds to earn a chocolate egg! FRI 18-SUN 20 APR KIDS FARMYARD ART SHOW Roves Farm Visitor Centre, Sevenhampton, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN6 7QG. 01793 763939, www., 11am-3pm, free with standard admission • Roves Farm’s resident artist, Charlotte, holds a show and sale this Easter featuring her kids’ farmyard art.



29/01/2014 11:09:17


d r a o b n i P Aquarium wonder

Located in the heart of Bristol’s City Centre on the Harbourside, Bristol Aquarium is home to over 4,000 aquatic creatures! Experience close encounters with hundreds of native fish which swim through the shipwreck-themed displays and journey to the magnificent centrepiece of the aquarium, the enormous Coral Sea. Here you’ll be able to admire over 250 marine animals, including sharks, moray eels, puffer fish and more. In the Botanical House, you will be able to visit the 60,000 litre ‘Bay of Rays’ to see wrasse and stingrays or step out into the Harbourside area to say hello to the aquarium’s giant Pacific octopus - the world’s largest species of octopus. From the top of the rainforest through to the heart of the Amazon displays, you will come faceto-face with an awe-inspiring array of creatures including red-bellied piranhas, toxic frogs and giant catfish! Ffi: W:

Making a difference as a Guardian When Sasha Wellings joined the Guardian Family Network four months ago as director, she never imagined that it would be so much more than a ‘communication hub’. The network, which offers guardianship support to overseas children who gain a place at UK boarding schools, plays a pivotal role in the lives of its students. Sasha has discovered just how important the network’s ‘Guardian’ families are to ensuring that its students thrive in their schools and settle happily with a family in Britain. Being a Guardian is an excellent opportunity for your own children to make new friends, to learn about other countries and gain cultural understanding. It is not a full time role as the children are at independent boarding schools. A home from home experience is at the heart of what the network offers during half term and exeat breaks. It is equally there to support its Guardians as it is for the children and their parents. Building lasting relationships with people across the globe, forming friendships with families from different cultures are some of the wonderful benefits of becoming a Guardian. Ffi T: 01865 522066 W:



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Parents’ & teachers’

news, education & contacts

Explore: free tuition Explore Learning centres across the UK provide maths and English tuition to 5 to 14 year olds of all abilities, and run special courses in 11+ exam preparation. The centres are open seven days a week, and are Ofsted registered, meaning that families can use Childcare Vouchers to pay for membership. Children attend up to twice a week on a drop-in basis, so Explore tuition fits easily into busy family life. As Explore members, children work with enthusiastic, motivating tutors. Each child has an individual learning programme and all Explore courses map to the National Curriculum. Research by Reading University showed that “Explore Learning members’ improvement in maths was 30% higher than that of the comparison group.” Families joining in February will receive two weeks’ free tuition at participating centres. All centres offer free trial sessions so find out how your family can benefit. Ffi: W:

Preparing for the new 11+ The Gloucestershire 11+ exam has a new exam assessor, The Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring (CEM). Gloucestershirebased 11+ Tutoring Academy has experience in preparing pupils for CEM exams, as it also provides tuition and mock exams for pupils in Buckinghamshire, which already has a CEM 11+ exam in place. “From our experience, CEM exams are fundamentally different to the previous Gloucestershire 11+ exam, in terms of content, the format of the exams and the skills needed to succeed,” says a spokesperson for the Academy. Group courses for Gloucestershire CEM 11+ are held in: Cheltenham – Wednesday evenings Course 1 4-6pm Course 2 6-8pm Cirencester – Friday evenings 4.15-6.15pm The academy’s mock exam course for Gloucestershire CEM 11+ Exam starts in February half term onwards. All its exams are different in format, content and difficulty, to allow pupils to build their confidence. Reserve your child’s place for 2014 and 2015 onwards (one to one and group tuition places available), as well as the mock exam course for 2014 and 2015 start.

Mojo Active: give it a try! Welcome to a first class and refreshingly different events, meetings and party venue. Set in 114 acres of private farmland, Mojo Active opened in April 2012 and offers a range of outdoor activities. Its experienced military instructors are there to energise and motivate you to achieving your goals, whether that’s for fitness, team building, leadership, learning and development or pure fun. Mojo Active is ideal for: holiday clubs and birthday parties; schools and sports programmes; team building; corporate events; boot camps; stag and hen dos; fitness and circuit training. Equipped with a log cabin, and changing rooms as well as extensive facilities and activities, visit Mojo to tackle: military assault course; low ropes course; 100m zip wire; archery; climbing wall; tunnel maze; and orienteering. Ffi: Mojo Active Over Court Farm, Over Lane, Almondsbury, Bristol BS32 4DF T: 01454 660075 M: 07770 925022 E: W:

Dress to impress Is your child dressing up for World Book Day, an historical learning day, a school assembly or production? Are they going to any costume parties or simply just love to dress up? If so The Ultimate Party Shop is a definite must-visit. A fantastic array of children’s costumes and accessories allow you to create any outfit that you might need from Roman to World War Evacuees, Disney Characters and Pirates to Animals and Superheroes. Any teachers or parents wanting to join in will not be disappointed, either, as there is a wide range of costumes for all sizes to buy and hire alongside wigs, masks, make-up and other essential accessories. Children’s favourite mascot characters are available to hire and prove very popular, providing memorable entertainment at your child’s party alongside exciting balloon displays, piñatas, loot bags, banners, candles in lots of popular themes! T: 01242 524433 W:

Ffi T: Kathryn on 01242 221271 W:


29/01/2014 12:35:25

Getting the party


Planning that perfect birthday for a child takes a mix of logistical aptitude and diplomacy, as Stephen Donovan discovers.


or primary school kids the year throws up few more memorable moments than the celebration of their birthday with their friends. Children look ahead to their party with unrelenting excitement, leaving mum and dad with the challenge of organising an experience that meets their expectations, so preparation often begins several months in advance. There’s plenty to think about. First, where is the party going to be held? Should you stick to the familiar surroundings of home or consider a dedicated venue? If there are lots of guests, perhaps this is the year to go for a venue. What would he or she like most, indoors or outdoors? The choices are legion but it should be a fun task, with the birthday boy or girl at the centre of attention. At all times, be sure to manage their expectations and, while consulting them over the decisions, don’t be swayed by unrealistic demands. The focus then turns to who to invite. Of course your child has the main say over this, but you may need to add one or two names to the list to avoid any diplomatic faux pas in the playground.


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children to get creative is an appealing choice. Gather all the materials you need well in advance and make sure there are plenty of willing hands to help clear up at the end. Whether your activities include soft play, a bouncy castle, dancing, craft activities or traditional party games, the aim, for the parents, as well as giving their child some unforgettable memories, is to ensure that they’re utterly tired out by the end, resulting in an easy bedtime and a well-earned rest for Mum and Dad!

One professional party organiser told Primary Times that parents’ first jobs should be to, “Think about how many children to invite, and think of a venue, perhaps a suitable local hall which can accommodate everyone.” Themes for parties are becoming more and more popular as the demand for venues and entertainers increases. Children spend most of the build-up to the party campaigning for their preferred theme, which could

involve their favourite fictional characters, or maybe animals and pirates. Some may go down the prince/princess route, while Disney characters are always a popular choice. Once that decision is made, anything from the decorations and costumes to the party games and the cake can be themed in the same way. Maybe you could hire a magician to provide the entertainment, including fun games and fabulous prizes. One magician with years of experience at parties told us, “When we arrange a show we always think about the children, what they want, and what will entertain them.” He also had a tip for parents looking to hire an entertainer: “Check on their website to see whether they are in [the performer’s trade union] Equity, and can meet its code of conduct.” Another party organiser had this advice, “Always plan early because too often parents leave it until the last minute. By that time the best venues are gone.” Many locallybased party organisers, venues and entertainment providers will work hard to make this party special, and they have everything covered from cakes to surprise birthday gifts (see our list, below). If you prefer not to hire entertainers, encouraging the

Bristol Aquarium T: 0117 929 8929 W: Cattle Country Adventure Park T: 01453 810510 W: Chosen Candy Carts and Mascots T: 01452 540695 W: Cotswold Farm Park W: Glitter and Gloss T: 01452 417696 W: Paint-a-pot T: 01453 835043 W: Ultimate Partyshop W:



29/01/2014 10:49:55

Adver tising Feature

Exploring at Wycliffe Nursery At Wycliffe Nursery children enjoy playing in the many and varied outside spaces whether it is making footsteps or writing in the frost on the playground, going for long walks across the playing fields to collect leaves and conkers or adventures in the jungle. This winter the nursery has set up its own ‘mud kitchen’ in order to stretch children’s imaginations and understanding of the world around them, while they collect ingredients for recipes. The Upper Nursery children have enjoyed their first term of French lessons with Madam Robinson and are already confidently naming colours and enjoying a song about fingers, thumbs and hands. They have been on two trips so far this term, one to the Arboretum at nearby Westonbirt, where they looked for ‘the big bad wolf’ and another to a local supermarket to buy the ingredients enjoyed by ‘the very hungry caterpillar’. All Nursery children enjoy their weekly dance session, with some choosing to extend this with additional ballet classes. The children are all investigating the world around them and learning many things along the way, while at the same time forming friendships and gaining confidence. The main aim at Wycliffe Nursery is to make sure everyone is having fun. • Ffi Wycliffe Nursery T: Wendy Robertson 01453 820471 W:

Adver tising Feature

The standard of maths in Britain - a perspective by Edward Jenner School The publishing of the tri-yearly International PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) test results has brought with it the usual hand wringing and political debate. The message: we are not achieving as we should in maths and science, as measured against East Asian countries. Yes, the tiger economies scored better at maths in the prescribed PISA tests; many believe these results can be explained wholly by complex social and political reasons. However research suggests better maths starts at home: an early start is crucial in shaping children’s numeracy skills (TIMSS 2011). Students have higher mathematical achievement if parents engage in early numeracy activities with their children and, if they value maths education, seeing the potential for their child’s future economic wellbeing. A positive maths influence which recognises and encourages achievement, makes children more positive about their maths, this in turn makes them better at maths. Edward Jenner School believes it can help. The small independent day school offers an individual approach to maths and literacy learning, valuing core skills. It develops a perfectly tailored learning programme for your child, building on areas of strength, giving them the confidence and skills to push forward - “Making Learning Happen”. This same approach is used in its after-school tutoring programme. Edward Jenner School provides a supportive, positive environment, helping your child to become an achiever in maths and to raise their standards. • Ffi Edward Jenner School T: 01442 380808 E:


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29/01/2014 12:37:23

Adver tising Feature

Chedworth discovery milestone

Sat 23rd - Sun 24th March, Wed 27th - March

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the date Victorians discovered Chedworth Roman Villa. Join the celebrations and find out how one fortunate ferreting event in 1864 revealed a lavish Roman villa, hidden for 1,600 years. Rediscover the villa from a Victorian perspective. Chedworth Roman Villa reopens for the anniversary season on Sat 15 Feb and, throughout the half-term, you can enjoy a variety of indoor activities, dressing up as well as visiting the site. Join Max the Ranger for a guided natural history tour on Mon 17 Feb or meet Nancy the National Trust archaeologist on Fri 21 and Sat 22 February for special, hands-on activities. With the anniversary celebrations this spring you can also discover the villa ‘behind the scenes’ through new talks and tours. Meet the conservation staff and volunteers on 20, 24 Feb and 6, 10, 20 Mar, or plan to see them at the similar events in April and May. For that special family day out, take your mum to celebrate the Mothering Sunday in Roman style on 30 Mar. Legio II Augusta re-enactors return with their popular chats and demonstrations. You can also create a special gift for Mum at the craft activities on the day. If she or her friends enjoy arts and crafts, why not present her with the extraordinary gift of a mosaic-making workshop at the villa on 15 Mar? There’s a wide range of special tours, activities and events on the website, while the villa’s Facebook page brings you all its exciting stories throughout the year. • Ffi Chedworth Roman Villa Yanworth, Nr. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL54 3LJ T: 01242 890256 W: Fa: NTChedworthRomanVilla

Adver tising Feature

The Wye and the wherefore A new co-educational free school is planned for children aged 4 to 16 in the border region of Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Monmouthshire. Wye Valley Free School is due to open in 2015, and its team is working towards this in earnest. Using Human Scale education principles, together with ideas drawn from the educationalist Montessori, the school will allow children to be known well, understood and responded to as individuals with different and changing needs. A thoughtful school with a flexible approach, it will support each and every child to do their best at gaining GCSEs and other formal qualifications at the same time as developing wider skills for life. Its aim is to create a school that is a ‘home-from-home’, where children are allowed to follow their natural curiosity and, with expert guidance, accumulate knowledge and skills to equip them for adult life. Encouraging rigour and high standards of achievement through self-motivation and commitment, the school aims to create a space where children develop a grounded sense of self and a good and practiced understanding of their connectedness with others and the wider environment. Its core values are • Inclusion • Achievement • Respect and appreciation of each individual • Balance of self and others in the world Check website for dates and venues of the school’s public events • Ffi Wye Valley Free School T: Sarah Mclellan on 07783 943298 W: E:


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29/01/2014 12:37:51

Let’s hear it for Mum!

As Mother’s Day approaches, Stephen Donovan has a few ideas for creating that extra special gift.


t’s a Saturday morning as the end of March approaches. Children all over the region will be waking up knowing that tomorrow is Mother’s Day. Possibly they’ve already taken the initiative and made Mum a present she’ll treasure. Or maybe school has encouraged them to make something in class. There’s a third possibility that they’ve forgotten all about it and realise they’ve still got 24 hours to buy or create that heartfelt gift. Mothers, it’s worth restating, have one of the world’s toughest jobs, providing lifelong practical and emotional support and guidance to their kids. Of course children are free to show their appreciation all year round, but this year Sunday 30 March is the date put aside for most children to recognise Mum’s efforts. Maybe breakfast in bed, the



14 Glos Features Feb Half Term 2014.indd 8

gift of a pampering day or a shopbought present will make her day, and this is something you’ll definitely need to talk to Dad about. But nothing tells Mum that you love her more than a homemade gift or card which you’ve put your own thought and creativity into. Try to get Dad or a grown-up family member involved in the project – they’ll probably have some great ideas to help. If you’re going down the homemade route you may need some grown up help to get all the materials you need together, especially if it involves buying things from the shops. Think about the things that she really likes and try to create something based around that. This could be a hobby or a pastime, a favourite object, a pet, a favourite animal or simply a colour. You can make your own card original and vivid with all kinds of materials. Maybe stickers and glitter are the way to go, or for those willing to experiment, the fabric route is an option, with different kinds of paper and felt. Photos or drawings of you and your mum will always be treasured. If you’re thinking of going a step further than just a card, how about making decorative paper patterns or painting ceramics like plates, pots and vases, perhaps even using your own handprints? If you need some help getting creative with pottery, why not attend a workshop to decorate and glaze the perfect plate or cup? There are lots of experts out there who will be happy to help you create your gift. Homemade jewellery is often a favourite, so maybe present your mother with a bracelet, or a necklace made using dried flowers or beads. If you don’t have all the materials you need to make your gift at

home, there’s a wealth of locally based arts organisations, workshops, museum resources and craftspeople who can supply all the things you need to create the perfect gift using the materials of your choice. So, there’s no need to leave it to the day before. Have a chat with Dad or a friend to get their help and work out what is practical. Maybe check some of the websites listed here for ideas. Then it’s just a matter of time, creativity and perhaps a bit of controlled mess-making (don’t forget to clear up!) before that perfect creation is ready to offer up to Mum.

Flowered up! This bright homemade sunflower is easy for younger children to make and is sure to bring a smile to Mum’s face. If you’re stuck, ask Dad for help.


Cut a 31/2“ diameter circle from a piece of brown, medium thickness card.


Draw a large sunflower, roughly 7“ high on a piece of orange card – if you’re finding it hard to draw, you can download a template from the internet there are lots. Then cut it out.

ABeadsC W: Flying Saucers T: 0117 963 9452 W: Glitter and Gloss W: Inspiration Ceramic Art T: 07412 238324 Paint A Pot T: 01453 835043 W: The Paper Village T: 0117 963 9452 W: Relaxation Centre T: 0117 970 6616 W: Robin James Salon W: Wish Handmade Jewellery T: 07904977568

5 6

Stick your circle to the centre of the yellow flower.

Add a stem by piercing four holes in the centre of your circle, in the shape of a square, about 1/4“ apart taking a piece of bamboo or wooden dowel about the same diameter and tying it on tight with string or gardening twine.


Decorate with beads, paint, glitter or other decoration of your choice. You can even personalise it by sticking a photo of your face in the centre.


Draw a slightly smaller sunflower shape (perhaps 51/2“) on a piece of yellow card, and then cut it out.


Using paper glue, stick your yellow flower to the centre of the orange flower, with the petals offset from each other.


29/01/2014 10:52:20

Classifieds Art & Crafts


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Riding Lessons for all ages and abilities


• Patient and friendly tuition • Good selection of horses and ponies available • All aspects of riding, horse care and stable management • BHSAI Qualified and Experienced Instructors • Floodlit outdoor riding arenas • Gift vouchers available

Experienced professional teacher Beginners to advanced - all ages & abilities Parents welcome at lessons CRB enhanced checked Wapley Hill, Westerleigh, Bristol. BS37 8RJ 01454 321583 or 07860530199

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Modern martial arts in a fun and friendly environment • Little Puma’s 4-6 yrs • Juniors 6-12 yrs • Cadets 12-16 yrs • Adults 16+ For information or to book TWO FREE trial classes contact instructor Ms Tiina Elise 07729 358691 or (please quote Primary Times)

Tuition Learn the Harmonica at school - it’s fun, cheap, cool and easy. 10% off a giant cupcake when you book your party with the advert


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Press the red button at Harmonica themed Birthday Parties ‘Wow, that’s different!’ 07599 561514

To reach 39,000 families in your area advertise in the next issue of Primary Times. Call Caroline 0117 934 3737 or email Or Ruth 0117 934 3737 or email FEBRUARY HALF TERM 2014


29/01/2014 11:19:45

Hello Kids!

Thank you so much for the lovely pictures you send me . The standard is always high so try again if your entry didn’t get published. This Easter I have teamed up with our friends at Cattle Country Adventure Park, who have offered a family ticket to each of the three lucky winners of our art competition. The park is packed with a wonderful selection of attractions including two play barns, cattle displays and a splash pool. Inspired by this, why not send me your pictures of my favourite attraction at Cattle Country Park. Check their website for some more ideas: www. php/explore Please send your pictures to: Arty Barty, Venue Publishing, BN&Media, Temple Way, Bristol, BS99 7HD, or email high resolution jpegs to my editor, mike.gartside@ Don’t forget to put your name, age, full home postal address and school on the back: deadline Monday 3 March.

Arty Barty Last issue, I asked you to send in your pictures of ‘my favourite zoo animal’. This subject really caught your imagination so especially well done to the winning artist who wins a family day ticket to Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm.


Chiharu Foster, 8, Elmlea Junio r School, Br A majestic scene istol by Ch iharu, another regular captured the elecontributor, who’s the detail of the gant giraffes and leaves beautifully.

8, Scott Granger, Preshute Primary School, Manton, Wiltshire nt Amazing moveme by on this baby tiger r a previous winne n. of this competitio l rea Scott is showing maturity.

Harvey Wong, 9, Elm Park Primary School, Bristol This black panther has a superb pose and a rather cheeky look on his face. There’s so much character in this drawing.

Hermione Lloyd Bussell, 8, St Sampsons Junior School, Cricklade There’s an irresistible expression on this deer’s face, which really pulls at the heart strings. Simple and effective.


WORD PUZZLE Mike Gartside reviews a new release.

Breaking badger The delightfully delinquent siblings Stinkbomb and Ketchup-Face set off to visit the king, to right a dreadful wrong. It appears that badgers have stolen Stinkbomb’s missing £10 note, the damning evidence for the animals’ crime being in their name: if they weren’t bad, as Stinkbomb rather brilliantly points out, they would just be called ‘. . .gers’. The story is driven along hilariously with knowing, Baudelaire Orphan-style asides, self-conscious silliness and repeated gags, pitched perfectly at the 6 to 10 age group, with plenty for parents to appreciate as well. The artwork is entertainingly cartoonish, complete with anarchic typography. The only problem with this relentlessly energetic book is it’s unlikely to settle the kids before bed time. Stinkbomb & Ketchup-Face and the Badness of Badgers John Dougherty, £5.99, Oxford University Press,



14 Glos Books & Arty Barty Feb Half Term 2014.indd 34

It’s not long until Pancake Day, so how many words can you find? Look out for: flour, eggs, butter, frying pan, lemon, savoury, sugar, sticky, mess, milk.











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Primary Times Glos Haf Term Feb14  

Bond: your journey to 11+ success starts here... Page 4

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