Week 1

After a few weeks off work I am suddenly back at school but this is not The Ridge Academy. My Dad (Mr. Hales) has taken me to a new school, Willow Primary Academy. We have a nice big office and there are lots of new smells to explore and lots of new people to meet. My Dad tells me that this school has two separate parts and lots more classes than my last school. I am excited to meet all of the new people.

We first of all meet the staff during a briefing session. This seems like a great place to be as there was breakfast, but apparently I am not allowed any. Seems silly to me but I am told it would make me ill. I think I know best! Dad tells the staff we are focusing on Health and Safety and Safeguarding during our week. This seems a bit boring to me as I just want to explore but it is important stuff to get right . . . I am sure humans have their priorities wrong!

During the first day, I go into the hall and see lots of children sitting beautifully listening to my Dad. This other person, who keeps giving me treats, brings me into the hall to meet everyone. All the children seem excited and Miss Tonks gives me to my Dad. I see lots of children at playtime. I am introduced slowly to the children but as I have been a school dog before it is easy. I am well behaved and listen to the instructions which means I was allowed off my lead to explore. I did enjoy running up and down the field with lots of children. I am enjoying being in school and seeing all of the great things going on and it makes me proud to see children doing the ‘Willow walk’. I have tried but I can’t get my paws behind my back!

Today, I got up for work and Dad left on his own! I was gutted! He said he had some boring meetings that I couldn’t come to. I did miss the PRIDE Assembly today which was very upsetting as I didn’t see all the fabulous certificates. I am looking forward to Friday as I have an important visitor to meet.

So today, my Dad went to meet Councilor Miller and Richard Graham MP who came to open our fantastic new play equipment at The Piper Centre. This was funded by the remarkable Pied Piper Charity and will certainly prove an invaluable resource for the children. It has been a long week and I am feeling tired now but I have enjoyed meeting the children at Willow Primary Academy so much and can’t wait for more adventures next week !

Week 2

Wow!!! It has been such a busy week full of all sorts of exciting adventures and experiences. I am now getting sued to being at Willow Primary Academy and I am beginning to learn more children’s  and staff names. I have even met some of the other Head Teachers and the CEO of SAND Academies Trust. More about that later!

Monday was soon here and my Dad told me his focus this week was getting to know the children and staff better by spending time in classes and out at lunchtimes. Sometimes I had to stay in the office on my own as it distracts the children from their learning if I am in the classroom. On Monday, Dad went to Ash Class and spent time watching the Phonics teaching that was happening. he was really pleased when he came back that there was strong teaching of Phonics. I did enjoy going out at playtimes and lunchtimes and playing with the children!

On Tuesday morning, Dad went to the Piper Centre on Tuesday morning. I was not allowed to go but I do love seeing the children arrive at The Piper Centre in the mornings. Some of them love coming to say hello. Tuesday was a really day but I met lots of great people. Dad also paid a visit to Acron Class to see their fanastic learning. I love going to Acorn class as I always get a warm welcome! Dad had a meeting with three people on Tuesday afternoon. They were Clare Silvester (School Improvement Partner), Bob Pattenden (SAND Trustee) and Wendy Ward (Governor). This was a meeting to discuss how Willow is doing and what we need to do next. There was lots of talking but I think they came up with some great ideas! After that we had to stay late for a Governors Meeting. I got very distracted during the meeting as it was in the hall and I was clearing up any bits that the children had dropped at lunchtime. It was the cleanest the hall had ever been!

On Wednesday morning, we spent time with Chestnut Class. They had been working on some really hard tests so they spent some time outside playing games. I enjoyed running up and down with them. I didn’t really get the game but I kept getting tagged. It just felt like they wanted to stroke me but apparently I was out!!! I did get tired so I went to chill out! I also got to meet some of the new children who are starting at school in September. They were so good at doing the ‘Willow Walk’! I think they will be a great Reception Class.

I attended my first PRIDE Assembly this week. It did make the children a little excited me being in the hall but they all have done amazingly well this week especially with their attendance as all classes had attendance of over 90% an Acorn Class had attendance of 99%. This is amazing and it really helps our learning if we are at school every day. It was great helping to give out certificates!

Friday was a little strange. Dad had a meeting with the CEO and other heads at Head Office so we went on a walk before the meeting. I can’t really remember what happened in the meeting as I fell asleep. I came back to school and enjoyed seeing all the children and went out to see the children taking part in the MAD (Military Activity Days) Events. The children were having a great time!

Week 3

Another exciting week at Willow has passed and it has been busy again. I have enjoyed my time in school especially at lunchtimes where the children are teaching me to chase a ball and bring it back. Today was a bit hot so I ended up lying under a tree in the shade. Lunchtimes are my favourite time of day as the smells from the kitchen are so enticing. I also get to go outside most lunchtimes and love enjoying strokes from the children.

This week the focus has been getting to know the parents and families. Dad has run some ‘Meet and Greet’ sessions and he has talked to them about the results of the parent survey. I really enjoyed hearing that children were safe and happy at Willow Primary Academy. I know Dad is keen to work quickly on the areas for improvement and I hope you are seeing an improvement with communication to families already. There are final ‘Meet and Greet’ sessions on Monday at 9.00 am and 2.30 pm and I would love to meet some of you.

I attended some training on Monday regarding the new curriculum for September 2022 for the Foundation Subjects. I wasn’t sure what these were but Dad told me it is not the important stuff like English and Maths but all the other lessons. The new curriculum looks exciting and I especially love the ‘hook’ at the beginning of the unit which could incorporate a trip or visit. Hopefully, I get to go on some! I also excited about the event at the end of the unit where children celebrate their learning. This will be great to see all the children’s work.

I went to Oak Class one day this week and some of the children were missing. I got really worried but Dad reassured me as they were at their new school for September. They are all going to Secondary School which sounds really big and grown up. I don’t think I am ready for that, yet!

The week ended with a visit from an author called Andy Seed. He told my Dad that the children were well behaved and showed a real passion for reading. The photos will be on the newsletter next week. Off to find a cool area of my house as it is far too hot!

Week 4

Well, it has been a hot week at school but not as hot as next week! I am not sure I am able to come to school on Monday and Tuesday due to the weather warning but we will see.

The week began with a visit from the School Improvement Partner who was at school to help Dad and Mrs. Tonks assess the progress that the children have made this year. They talked a lot about data but I didn’t really understand. Dad also had some more ‘Meet and Greet’ sessions and I met some more families which was great. I am looking forward to meeting more at Sports Day later this week but I am not sure what this is yet!

During the week Dad has been meeting with lots of staff to discuss how school is going since we started. The staff feel we have done well an our beginning to make a difference to Willow Primary Academy since we started. I am pleased we are making a difference.

On Wednesday we had Sports Day. It was all about races! I tried starting a dog race but no one else was a dog so couldn’t join in. Everyone gave me a big cheer which was great as I was the winner! I found an apple to eat to celebrate. Some of the children were very fast in the running races and they did so well in the other races. I did think they looked silly trying to race in sacks but they tried so hard. Well done to everyone for taking part and especially the winners of each race. The Year 6’s had a great time raising money after school on Wednesday and did a great job. I did help clearing up the popcorn.

Dad had a meeting with other Head Teachers on Friday but they didn’t want a school dog to attend so I had a day off with my friend, Benji, at home! I hope I see you all next week!




Week 5

Apparently, I have finished for the Summer. I didn’t realise that I got a Summer Holidays. This is very exciting but I will miss all the children at Willow as they seem to like me.

This week began with some ridiculous temperatures. It was so hot especially walking around wearing a black coat. Everyone else, including my Dad, seemed to dress differently. I wish I could have taken my coat off! Everyone in school did really well to cope with the heat and the school made lots of adjustments to help the children with this like relaxed playtimes, keeping doors and windows and having the option of going home early.

On Tuesday we had the Year 6 Leavers Assembly. They did so well remembering all their words and I am sure they will do themselves proud at secondary school. I wonder if any of them have a school dog!

On Thursday I loved spending time with the children, on their last day. I went a bit crazy at lunchtime and just started running around. I dnt really know why but the children in Acorn, Ash, Birch and Chestnut absolutely loved it. We also celebrated all the children in PRIDE assembly before they went home for the Summer Holidays.

I decided not to come to school today as the children weren’t there. Some of the staff were sad about this so my dad promised I would come for the training days in September.

Have a great summer and see you in Septemeber!