What’s On – Friday 24th February

Message from Mrs. Castell

Dear Parents

I hope you all had a wonderful half term.

I would like to thank all parents who have ensured that their children continue to attend school regularly. Attendance this week is 95% compared to our school target of 96%. Good attendance is essential if pupils are to make expected or better progress in school. Attendance is reviewed monthly and I will make contact with parents of any pupils whose attendance is giving cause for concern. While our attendance has improved, and we know that there have been many bugs making the rounds, there are still too many children classed as persistent absentees and we ask that every effort is made to get them into school. If you are not sure, please ask us or bring your child in, we will always call you if we think they are too unwell to be in school.

We welcomed Parrots' parents in for lunch this week and are looking forward to Dolphins' parents joining us next Wednesday at 12.05pm. Thursday 2nd March is World Book Day and we have Family Learning Time from 8.45-9.30. As stated previously, we are not expecting children to dress up as they need to change for our Julia Donaldson themed dance workshops. Instead, we encourage the children to wear themed headwear from any of the Julia Donaldson books, together with their school uniform. Foxes class needs to start their dance workshop at 9.15, so parents are very welcome to watch the dance workshop for 15 minutes if they wish, as we do not want to shorten their Family Learning Time.

Dates coming up later this term include our next Reading Monday on 6th March, the Sharks parents lunch on 8th March and the Year 2 Infant Music Festival on Wednesday 15th March. The following day is a coffee morning for Year 2 parents, at which the teachers will outline the format of the end of Key Stage 1 assessments. Red Nose Day on Friday 17th March will be a non-uniform day, where we ask children to wear bright clothes for a suggested donation of £1 to Comic Relief. Mrs Gowers will run a catch-up tennis club session on Monday 27th March, as she was unwell last Monday. There are parents evenings on Wednesday 29th and Thursday 30th March. We have also confirmed this week that the WISPA/WJSPA Summer Fete will be held on Saturday 1st July.

An important note from our joint Chairs of Governors follows this message. As part of our initiative to make the governors more familiar to you, Esther Burton will be on the playground at drop off on Thursdays and Fridays. You can also email the Chairs directly at chair@writtleinfantschool.com.

Tip from our Eco Warriors club: save electricity by turning off electronics when you are not using them!

Word aware
As part of our commitment to developing vocabulary with our children, each class will be choosing a word of the week and we will share one with you. We would be grateful if you would discuss this and use it with your children. This week’s word is: deny.

Best wishes
Helen Castell

Message from the Chairs of Governors

Dear Parents and Carers,

Matthew and I are delighted to let you know that at the Full Governing Body meeting this week, it was formally confirmed that Mrs Tracey Wilson, our current Deputy Head, will be the Head of School at Writtle Infants from September 2023.

We will continue to work with Mrs Castell, Mr Taylor and Mrs Wilson to continue to ensure a smooth transition into September and beyond. We are sure you will join us in congratulating Mrs Wilson on her promotion to Head of School.

As always, please come and find us to chat on a Thursday and Friday morning at drop off, or email us at chair@writtleinfantschool.com with any questions, queries etc.

Best wishes,

Esther Burton and Matthew Coffey
Co-Chairs of Governors
Writtle Infant School


If you are a parent living in Essex and you need some guidance and resources to help you with managing stress and conflict in your relationship you can access online digital courses for free.

There are three courses to choose from:

  • Me, You and Baby Too is for new and expectant parents.
  • Arguing better is for parents who want help with stress and arguing.​
  • Getting it Right for Children is for separating or separated parents.

On the One Plus One page, choose the Central England map and then the area you live in (Essex county, Southend-on-Sea or Thurrock). You will be able to access the courses via Edge, Chrome, Firefox and Safari.

We all have a duty to safeguard the children in our care and if the school suspects or knows that a child is at risk of significant harm, we will make a referral to Social Services. The school does not investigate any disclosures that children may make, we are a referring agency. Procedures on safeguarding from the Government make it clear that all staff should operate with an ‘it could happen here’ approach to any concerns they may have. If you have any concerns about a child please telephone the Essex Child and Families Hub on 0345 603 7627.


  • If anyone has any spare bird-feeders or teapots, we would love to hang them in the trees for Forest School!
  • As we have children in school with life-threatening allergies, please do not send products containing nuts into school, or egg-based foods such as egg mayo, scotch egg, omelette, frittata etc.
  • Teachers cannot check the class email during the day. Please send urgent messages to parents@writtleinfantschool.com.
  • We love to share awards, medals, trophies, even anecdotes from children’s achievements outside of school. Please hand them to me or email parents@writtleinfantschool.com for assemblies on Friday.
  • Diary dates and school events can added from our website to the calendar on your phone. Click on your chosen list of dates from the Links section and then click export at the bottom of the page.


SHARKS: Alex for independence and spotting patterns between the 5 and 10 times tables, even realising that 9995 is a multiple of 5 as there's a 5 in the ones column!!
Frankie T for being kind and polite and being a great friend when others are sad on the playground.
Samuel for an excellent start in Year 2 and for persevering with tricky maths! Robin for perseverance and Leighton for politeness.

DOLPHINS: Joe for his amazing independent reading and for being so happy! Farrah for perseverance and independence in phonics. Cienna and Bonnie for inclusivity, Yasin for politeness.

PARROTS: Jessica-Rose for independence, she described her friend as having 'infinite' jumpers and it nearly knocked my socks off. Alfie for perseverance during P.E and keeping his balance while travelling with a basket ball. (He also won his tennis tournament at the weekend, he won 4 out of 4 games!) Albie and Archer for independence, Ellie for inclusivity.

TURTLES: Annabelle J for showing a fantastic attitude to reading. At home she read "The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark" in only 2 days! She always works super hard in lessons and we are very proud. Finley T for independence and peseverance with his learning. He has worked so hard and we are very proud of him! Maria and Rosa for inclusivity.

SQUIRRELS: Kayden for politeness, always remembering his manners. Logan for perseverance, he did some super writing with Mrs Giles this week! Oliver and Mabel for inclusivity.

FOXES: Mrs Scott-Simons nominates Andrew for his perseverance using the wall bars. Despite being unsure of the height, he persevered and showed such determination to finish and he went and continued to climb across the bars without help afterwards!
Sasha for always being inclusive when her friends in Foxes feel a little sad or poorly, thank you for being so kind. Khiara for persevering with your blending skills! We are all super proud of you. Elliot and Khiara for inclusivity!

Year 2 News

What an exciting start to the half term! We have introduced our new theme ’Forever Friends’ through the book Pip and Egg by Alex Latimer, illustrated by David Litchfield. This book is about friendship, nature and the circle of life which fits in perfectly with our science focus. To develop reading stamina we have introduced ERIC time (Everybody Reading in Class) everyday after lunch. We have already noticed an improvement in their concentration, focus and independence. As a school, we are developing knowledge and understanding of vocabulary. Children may bring in their own book from home if they wish. Children are encouraged to explore the meaning of adventurous vocabulary in their books. This will hopefully encourage the children to start using more exciting words in their own writing.

Our multiplication and division unit has continued and this week has focused on problem solving.

Please click here for this week's home learning.

Year 1 News

Welcome back Year 1! What a great week back. This week we have been improving our sentence writing by ensuring we have the basics like capital letters, finger spaces and full stops and then extending our writing using interesting vocabulary. We have also introduced plurals! The children had fun discovering whether they should use ‘s’ or ‘es’ for plurals and we played some fun games based on this. In maths, we have finished subtraction for this half term and have found different ways to subtract such as: counting what is left and finding the difference. We found out all about Mary Read and why she became a Pirate. It was very interesting to find out about the past and some facts about Pirates. We also revisited what human and physical geographical features were. Have a lovely weekend!

Please click here for this week's home learning.


This week our poem is called Pancakes! We have enjoyed learning about pancakes and why we celebrate Shrove Tuesday. We have learnt two new words this week, vigorously and agitate. Both words we used to describe how we would mix the pancake batter. We looked at a recipe for pancakes and followed the instructions to make them. Most of use enjoyed eating them too! We have also designed our one pancakes, we decided what toppings we would like on them, some of them were very interesting! During phonics we have learnt the digraphs ar, or and ow and for some children we have been writing sentences with these sounds in them. In maths we have learnt all about the number 6 and found all the different ways we can make 6. PE was fun this week, Coach Chris had set up a circuit for us to complete. We really enjoyed trying to knock the cones off the bench using beanbags.

Have a lovely weekend.

Forest School News

Dolphins - Tuesday 21st February
Today was all about pancakes. This was the first time we had cooked pancakes on the fire and it was amazing. The pancakes were delicious! The children were patient and we were very proud of them. We had wood chip delivered during the half term break which needed to be moved to the paths and other areas, the children did a great job at moving it, it is not an easy job! There are no more stuck wellies though, which was a little disappointing to hear for some!
We also have an Emperor Penguin teddy which you may see at some point, we talked about where the penguin lives and the changes his habitat is going through due to climate change. We discussed how we can help by doing what we can where we live, the penguin would like to see this happen too.

Parrots - Wednesday 22nd February
Wet,wet,wet! Some great worms were found, the rain definitely helped with this. There were some beautiful daffodil paintings done in the afternoon when the rain had stopped. We have our spring flowers starting to appear now. Some children showed great patience trying to entice our resident robin to eat from their hands. Every time we gather at the fire circle the robin likes to join us and make his presence known. We also saw our first bumblebee of the year looking for somewhere to start its colony and discussed how important bees are for our planet. It is Nest box week this week so if anybody has any nest boxes or teapots that they no longer need we would love for the forest area.We also keep checking our pond for any signs of frog spawn, none as yet!