The Hour of Code is here!

 Community Links, computing, Curriculum, Uncategorized, Whole School  Comments Off on The Hour of Code is here!
Dec 062016
 

 

There aren’t many computer science weeks so we decided to make a big thing of it by inviting students from Stony Dean to join us for shared activities.   At first the boys joined Year 10 to explore the Hour of Code website and try out some of the coding activities.  The choices ranged from Disney’s Moana, Star Wars and Frozen, Minecraft and Flappy Bird.  Both the girls and the boys were nervous about working together at first but they soon forgot that they didn’t know each other and got down to coding.

Digital Camera

By the time the lesson changeover was ringing everyone was enjoying what they were doing and making good progress with the task.  The girls moved on to the next lesson but the boys stayed on to work with
a Year 9 class coming in to Computing.  By now they really were the experts and rose admirably to the challenge of sharing their skills with the beginners in Year 9.  These new pairings made rapid progress, completing activities and earning certificates.

Digital Camera

It was great to see pupils from the two schools working together so well and impressive to hear them chatting about computer science; solving problems and making things happen.

Digital Camera

Sound like fun? Visit https://hourofcode.com/uk/learn

This Week is Road Safety Week

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Nov 212016
 

Five people are killed every single day by something we already know how to cure. Our roads are dangerous places, where hundreds of deaths and serious injuries take place every week.

But by changing our driving behaviour, we can help to make our villages, towns and cities safer places to be. Every action that we take, as a driver or as a passenger, can change the outcome of a journey and the future of a family.

That’s why there’s a focus on the six elements of the Brake Pledge for Road Safety Week 2016 (21-27 November): Slow, Sober, Secure, Silent, Sharp and Sustainable.

We are asking everyone to make and share Brake’s Pledge online, and show their commitment to saving lives and keeping our roads safe. Anyone can join in – individuals, businesses and community organisations. Non-drivers can take the Pledge too, promising to help drivers stick to the six Pledge points.

So take action, make a difference, and Pledge to do six simple things to save lives this Road Safety Week.

www.brake.org.uk/pledge

A few facts on why the theme is important:

Slow: Breaking the speed limit or travelling too fast for the conditions is recorded by police at crash scenes as a contributory factor in more than one in four (27%) fatal crashes in Great Britain.

Sober: Having even one drink before getting behind the wheel can affect your ability to drive. In 2013 one in 10 (11%) drivers/motorcycle riders killed in a crash had alcohol present in their body, even though they weren’t over the legal blood-alcohol limit. One in seven road deaths are at the hands of someone who has driven while over the limit.

Secure: Seat belts are still seen as an inconvenience by some drivers, yet using one reduces the chance of dying in a crash by 50%. 21% of car occupants killed in crashes were not wearing a seat belt [5].

Silent: Drivers who perform a complex secondary task, like using a mobile, while at the wheel are three times more likely to crash than non-distracted drivers.

Sharp: Booking in for a regular eye test should be at the top of any driver’s to-do list. Road crashes caused by poor driver vision are estimated to cause 2,900 casualties and cost £33 million in the UK per year.

Sustainable: By minimising the amount we drive, and walking, cycling or using public transport instead, we are making our communities safer places, and doing the best we can for the environment and our individual health. Air pollution is a major killer: there are an estimated 29,000 deaths per year from particulate matter pollution in the UK, 5,000 of which are attributable to road transport.

 

To help our girls be seen after dark, we are selling refelective items in the kiosk now.

Star clips                        £1.40

Zip clips                          £0.60

Smile badges                   £1.00

Reflective laces              £1.00

Reflective stickers         £0.15

 

zip-clip-at-night star-clipon-all badge-smile

WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT BULLYING?

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Nov 212016
 

Last week was Anti-Bullying Week. The pupose of the focus week is to shine a spotlight on bullying and encourage all children, teachers and parents to take action against bullying throughout the year.

So this week, pupils are talking about bullying in PSHE lessons, thinking about the real meaning of the word and how it can be avoided. They will be coming up with strategies to deal with bullying in different situations.

Pupils in Year 7 & 8 will be taking part in a poster competition with prizes for each year group. The focus for the competition this year is WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT BULLYING?

We look forward to lots of great entries.

 

Mrs Dean

 

Be Safe on Bonfire Night

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Nov 032016
 

Follow these top tips to stay safe on bonfire night as researched by girls during Thursday block sessions:

Keep fireworks in a closed box
Follow the instructions on each firework
Light all fireworks at arm’s length
Stand well back
Never go back to a lit firework
Never put fireworks in your pocket
Never throw fireworks
Keep Pets indoors
Sparklers can be beautiful and enjoyable for young children but adults must be aware of their potential. Sparklers are the cause of a disproportionate number of injuries but only a few simple precautions are necessary.
Always supervise children with sparklers.
Teach them to hold the sparkler at arms length, but not near anyone else
Sparklers are not for the under 5s. They will be labeled as such and it is your responsibility.
Have a container of water handy, big enough for the spent sparkler. Dump the sparkler in it as soon as it goes out.

They also found out that last year 19.6 million firework injuries were reported at A&E departments.
Last year most injuries that occurred were burns, primarily to the hands, fingers, head, face, eyes and ears.

The girls then made videos to get their messages across.

Watch this video which some of them made today or take a look at ROSPA’s website for further information.

Nov 012016
 

When the fabulous boyband Boycode agreed to visit Alfriston, we were delighted not just because of their entertainment value but also because of the important message they brought about online safety and cyberbullying.

They didn’t claim to be experts but since they were at school just a few years ago, they felt they knew first hand exactly what pressures the girls might be under and they urged the girls to make the right decisions in life with respect to online safety, bullying and discrimination.
Their top tips for online safety were:
• Never give out personal information, such as telephone numbers, home address or details about your school, college or place of work – sometimes you don’t know who will end up with this information and what they could do with it.
• Never agree to meet someone you are in contact with over the internet. Remember, not everyone is who they say they are. If you don’t know who they are, how do you know they are a real person? People can easily set up fake profiles, with a picture that isn’t of them (use a story) – Catfish the TV show on MTV – Shows how many people actually pretend to be other people on the Internet, you don’t know that you are actually speaking to that person
• If someone says something that makes you feel upset, uncomfortable or threatened, save the messages but do not respond. Then tell a parent/carer/or report it online – If you respond you can make things worse and escalate the situation. Make the right decision and be the bigger person
• Never send pictures of yourself or any of your friends or family to anyone you meet online that you wouldn’t want other people to see. Once you send it, it could be sent/shown to other people, so if you wouldn’t want other people to see it – don’t send it!
• Follow the rules your parents/carers have set when using the internet
• Remember – spending too much time online can effect concentration, education, sleep and health
• Keep your profiles private – Check your privacy settings and keep everything private so not strangers can see any of your personal information
Report it and block it if you find something on the internet that makes you feel uncomfortable or worried.
They also offered some helpful advice just in case the girls do fall victim to cyber bullying:

What to do

• Ignore— If you’re the victim of “minor teasing or name calling” ignore it if you can avoid it. Sometimes bullies are encouraged by seeing a reaction and the situation can become a lot worse.
• Record—Keep a record of bullying messages you receive. If you can show an adult either the messages themselves or a diary of when you received them, it may be easier to verify what went on and who the bully was.
• Reach out—Your parents, your teachers, your friends, and even police officers can help you deal with cyber bullying or discrimination. Speak to people that you trust. There is no reason to suffer alone when you are the target of bullying.
• Cut off the bully—The National Crime Prevention Council advises victims to stop all communication with the bully when possible. If it’s cyber bullying you may be able to block their phone number so you no longer receive their calls or texts. Facebook and twitter etc allow you to block other users so that they can no longer interact with you.
Report It— You can also report If you’re being bullied via a website, chances are that the bully is going against the website’s terms of use. Youtube, facebook etc have safety centres where you can report the activity and sometimes get the bully kicked off the site.

ceop

What Not to Do
• Sink to the bully’s level. Starting your own cyberbullying campaign against the bully will get you nowhere, it will only potentially make the situation worse
• Forward bullying content or messages. If someone sends you a bullying message, forwarding it to a friend only expands the problem. You never know how far an email chain can go.
• Believe the bully. Don’t let bullies destroy your self-esteem. No one deserves to be harassed. Bullies are cowards and their actions are often more about their own problems than they are about you. When bullying gets you down, talk about it with someone you trust who can build you back up.

Since the boys’ visit we have had an internet safety week in school when all the girls reflected on questions related to cyberbullying. In the upper school, pupils heard about the tragic story of Felix Alexander and the heart breaking open letter his mother wrote to the press. We all agreed that we should commit to BE KIND online and that if we are feeling bullied or lonely, it is so important to talk to someone about our feelings.
This is what Sophie wrote to Felix’s mum:

Dear Mrs Alexander

I am really sorry for your loss. I will try to be the better person and be kind to my friend and not hurt their feelings I will support my friends in every way even if they are going through hard time. If they are being bullied and together we can tell someone or ChildLine. I will do everything to stop them killing them self. I will never post any unkind messages to anyone.  If we all remember to be kind there will be no more cyberbullying ever. It is very important to talk to someone if you are worried or getting bullied and remember there is always someone you can talk to.

From Sophie

 
Meanwhile, if you want to hear Boycode for yourself of follow their progress you can find them on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Year 7 Explore the Senses

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Oct 142016
 

This October Year 7 spent half a day off timetable combining their Food Technology and Literacy skills.

In English, we explored what we eat for breakfast and how to describe these foods. We even did some taste testing of a range of smoothies and discovered we like some of the flavours even if we don’t like the appearance!

In Food Technology, we made some examples of healthy breakfasts such as a healthy breakfast bar and a home made smoothie. We then thought about our senses to describe our creations. Hollie  said “I can see how I use describing in English and for talking about food”.

Universal Care and a Boyband

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Oct 112016
 

A group of Year 9 pupils showed off their singing talents at Universal Care in Old Beaconsfield on Thursday 6th October.
Along with Miss Johnson and Mrs. Dean, they demonstrated and played Boccia with the audience and entertained with their singing. Mr. Cullimore, Chairman of Universal Care presented the school with a gift and a very generous cheque.  Alfriston was their charity of the week – they have been supporting 30 charities in 30 weeks whilst celebrating 30 years of service to the community.
So thank you Mr. Cullimore and everyone at Universal Care.

global_uni_logo-0

 

 

 

That same afternoon there was yet more excitement!!
We were pleased to welcome BOYCODE – a Belgian boyband – to entertain whilst we sang, danced and listened to their important messages around online issues, cyber bullying and discrimination. They gave us lots of information, asked us questions and let us have time to ask our own questions too.
We will be discussing these topics in our Computing and PSHE lessons as well as in our pastoral time.
We all have at least one souvenir of their visit too.
So once again, thank you to Gregory, Matthias, Timmy and Lennert!!

boycode

Alfriston Cookery Book

 Cookery, Uncategorized, Whole School  Comments Off on Alfriston Cookery Book
Sep 282016
 

Alfriston Cookery Book –  As you may know I have been trying to put together an Alfriston school cookery book to share our love of cooking.  I need pupils to cook their favourite food, and I need somebody to take photos of them doing this along with the finished dish.   Then I would be thrilled if you could send the photos to me along with a copy of the recipe.  I can then collate the information into our very own Cook Book like the ones shown below.

So come on, please get cooking !!

Contact Mrs Jones on: lisa.jones@alfristonschool.com

 

cook bookcook book 2

School-Made Jam

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Sep 282016
 

School-Made Jam – the girls have been picking fruit and making various flavours of jam that will be sold at the Christmas Bazaar.  We would like to hold a competition for the girls to design a label for the jars that they think represents the school-made jam.

iphone sizeTo enter this competition the girls need to design a label on a piece of paper 160cm X 110cm (about the size of an I phone).  Please hand your designs to Mrs Jones before the half term.  Thank you.

Pokémon Go

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Jul 202016
 

Pokémon Go

 

The game is now available in the UK via Apple’s iOS and Google Play’s app stores.

 

So What do parents need to be concerned about?

 

The general lack of awareness players have for the world around them has led to accidents – running into things, falling and wandering into hazardous places.

You need a Google account to sign up to play the game and there have been reports that the app is automatically granting itself permission to access people’s Gmail and Google Drive accounts, which could leave them open to hackers. The level of permission required is currently being tweaked by Niantic, the game’s makers.

Security experts have spotted a malicious version of the Pokémon Go Android app that has been infected with a remote access tool that gives attackers full control over the victim’s phone.

There have been reports of muggers using the app to lure victims. The immersive nature of the game may make some players more trusting of strangers if they are fellow gamers, but children still need to apply the same safety rules that they would use for online gaming.

Is it safe?

 

A game that makes children exercise and talk to each other and one that adds a fresh perspective to familiar surroundings shouldn’t be demonised. But you need to ensure that your child is aware of the dangers before playing and remain safe while using it. There are some aspects of the game that many parents will want to talk to their child about before deciding if they will let them play it.

 

Parent Zone has not reviewed the game in an official capacity but here are some tips gathered from parents who have already played the game:

 

Give it a try yourself, or walk around with your child while they play it and ask them questions. If you are both playing together it could be fun!

If they want to venture out without you, make sure they do so with a friend or friends.

Let them know that they don’t have to walk around while staring at the map on the screen. So long as the game is open on their phones they can hold their mobile in their hand or even put it in their pocket while they walk. If a wild Pokémon appears in their immediate area, the phone will vibrate to let them know.

Let them know that you don’t have to visit a Pokémon’s exact location to capture it – you can stop at a nearby area where it’s safe (ie not in the middle of a busy junction). So long as it appears on their game map, they can capture it.

As with online gaming aliases, remind your child to choose a username that won’t identify either them or where they live. If your child captures a ‘gym’ their username will appear and anyone in the area who touches the gym to see the details of who is in control of it will see it.

Apply real world caution when visiting Pokéstops and gyms. Your child might make some new friends at these place – as they might in a shopping centre, park or cinema, but they need to be aware of the dangers. Make sure you know where your child is going who they will be accompanied by or, even better, offer to take them there yourself.

Be wary of ‘lures’. There is an item called a ‘lure’ that players can purchase with in-game tokens. They drop it at a Pokéstop and Pokémon are lured to that stop for around 30 minutes. You can tell when someone has dropped a lure at a stop because it will have confetti flying out of it on the map. There is the potential to capture lots of Pokémon, but this feature basically gives people the power to lure a group of kids to a certain spot for 30 minutes, so you’ll need to use your judgement and set rules with your child about how to handle this situation if it occurs.

 

 This is guidance previously issued by Parent Zone:

 

Pokémon Go – a parent’s guide

 

Within less than a week of its US release, Pokémon Go became a gaming phenomenon – the augmented reality game can transform familiar surroundings into adventure playgrounds and its simple rules make it accessible for families to play together. But with reports of accidents, muggings and even the discovery of a dead body, we examine what parents can do to combat Pokémon danger

 

What is Pokémon Go?

 

A smartphone game featuring the infamous 90s characters that allows users to interact with the real world using the phone’s camera and GPS capabilities.

 

This collaboration between Nintendo and Niantic Labs also uses augmented technology to allow players to catch Pokémon in real life.

 

Players will see a map of their current location that is super-imposed with their character and all of the game elements.

 

As players move around, different types of Pokémon (rats, snakes dragons etc) will appear, depending on where they are and what time it is.

 

Indoors or outdoors?

 

The idea is to encourage users to travel around the real world to catch these ‘wild’ Pokémon in the game. Different types of Pokémon can be found in different types of terrain and some types are easier to find in certain geographical locations.

 

If players want to hatch an egg (to produce a rare Pokémon) then they will need to walk: each egg requires 2 to 5 km walk before it will hatch.

 

When a player reaches Level 5 they also have the opportunity to unleash their Pokémon on ‘gyms’ – normally located at real-life local places of interest – to do battle with other people’s Pokémon characters. The people need to be at or near the same real world location.

 

What are Pokémon gyms and Pokéstops?

 

The gym is where players (known as ‘trainers’) go to teach their captured Pokémon to fight. At Pokéstops, trainers can pick up snacks and medicine for their captives.

 

The ‘real life’ location of these gyms and Pokéstops is likely to be a public place of interest – such as churches, shopping malls, water towers, museums etc. This is because the game was designed around geo-location technology and looking at what people have frequently typed into mapping apps.

 

Sometimes landscapes change quicker than technology can allow for, however, and there have been reports of players lured to inappropriate places of interest  such as sex shops – and of people living in converted churches complaining that their properties have been surrounded by hoardes of gamers.

 

One US teen even stumbled across a dead body when searching for a water-based Pokéstop near Wyoming’s Big Wind River.

 

Who do players interact with?

 

There’s no built-in chat function but the game does encourage you to interact with other players in ‘the wild’ and gamers are highly likely to encounter other real life people trying to get supplies from the same Pokéstop battling at their local ‘gym’ or just wandering around catching Pokemon in the same area.

 

Is there an age limit for players?

 

You have to be 13 or over to download the app, according to the app’s terms and conditions. In the US privacy legislation requires parents of under-13s to sign permission before any data about their children can be collected.

 

Is it free?

 

It’s possible to enjoy the game without making a single in-game purchase. However, as players progress they might require PokéCoins, the in-game currency of Pokémon Go, and this is how its makers look set to make a healthy return on their investment.

 

Players use PokéCoins to buy useful items, such as Poké Balls, which are needed to actually catch Pokémon.

 

There are ways to earn coins within the flow of the game, but the quickest way is to shell out the cash. In-app purchases: 79p for 100 PokéCoins to £7.99 for 12,000 coins.

 

Remind them to save some phone battery for the journey home. The game uses a lot of a phone’s power and will run out of battery faster than normal. Make sure they check their battery level and start heading back when it’s low. There’s a battery saving mode in the game settings, which will dim the screen and use fewer resources while they are walking around.