Catch up with all the latest Spanish news!

International School Award Reaccreditation success

ISA optHave you ever looked at all the badges at the bottom of the school website? If you have, you may have noticed one that says International School Award 2011-2014. You might even recall when we were awarded this accolade!

Over the last year, Señora Stevens has been collecting evidence to prove that Whitehouse Common Primary School deserves to be reaccredited with the Full award.

To qualify, a school applying for the Accreditation/Reaccreditation level of the International School Award will have embedded international learning across the school and curriculum and in doing so will have to:

  • work with international partners on a range of projects, sustaining activity throughout the academic year (including language learning activities)
  • embed the international work across the whole school (most pupils must be involved)
  • share educational practice with partners overseas and implementing changes across the school

And, if applying for reaccreditation,

  • disseminate their approach to international work and demonstrated long-term impact.

At the end of June, the application and evidence was submitted, and during the holidays we received good news!


Congratulations on your Re/Accreditation of the International School Award 2016-2019
Dear International Coordinator,
Thank you for submitting your Impact Evaluation of international learning activities. We are delighted to inform you that Whitehouse Common Primary School has been successful in gaining Reaccreditation of the International School Award and is accredited for three years from 1 September 2016 to 31 August 2019.
Here are the assessor’s comments on your Impact Evaluation, to highlight where your application was particularly impressive and points to take note of as you continue to develop the international dimension in your school:
Whitehouse Common Primary School.
International School Award Re-Accreditation: APPROVED.
Your school is clearly committed to the ongoing development of global citizenship via classroom-based learning and collaboration with partner schools in oer countries. An international dimension is firmly embedded in your curriculum, staff professional development programme and whole-school planning and ethos under the guidance of your own expertise and experience. Your international work enriches the curriculum, contributes to improved learning and educational outcomes and raises awareness of other countries and cultures, whilst providing opportunities for your pupils to consider and address global issues in a meaningful and motivational context. Your international dimension dovetails neatly with ICT and MFL teaching and learning. Your active collaboration with schools in other countries is effectively managed so that your pupils can communicate, share and discuss common themes freely.Foreign language learning is enriched with intercultural understanding provided by the link with peers in Mexico and by other opportunities to include cultural aspects. Short-term activities are balanced with ongoing programmes of study. Your ambassadorial role is high-profile, in which you support and disseminate international learning to a wide audience in other schools. Your impact evaluation is reflective and insightful, highlighting the positive effect of international work not only on pupils and local community, but also on staff professional development via the opportunity to share good practice with and learn from colleagues in different education systems in other countries. You have made good use of funded programmes such as Connecting Classrooms and Comenius, and continue to benefit from innovative eTwinning project work. You have good plans to sustain and further develop your international dimension. Congratulations on your International School Award Re-Accreditation 

There will be an national award ceremony later on in the Autumn at which we will be presented with our certificate and plaque, and if you check the bottom of the website in a few weeks time, you should be able to see our newly updated badge. 

Last year's Language Leaders suggested ways in which we can carry on developing our international work in 2016-17, and I'm sure that the next cohort will have plans too so watch this space!



The eTwinning Tree project - online!

oak treeThis year Whitehouse Common has been participating in an eTwinning project called The eTwinning Tree. The main activity was for schools across Europe to visit a special tree, imagine what the tree would say if it could talk, and write stories and poems and draw pictures for a special book that would travel between the schools. We welcomed the actual book in March - you can find out about it here.

The book didn't manage to visit all 33 schools this year but it will continue next year. However, materials from the project are being uploaded to a special website for us all to see here -






There's an electronic version of The eTwinning Book stories available here and you can see the actual book in electronic form here. You can't take the postcards out of the envelopes or touch the leaves etc but you can see the beautiful illustrations.

Finally, in April we wrote a section in a Storyjumper online story and now you can read the whole story!

Lo que aprendimos esta semana (Verano 12)

Another busy week of Spanish learning at Whitehouse Common amidst all the end of term assemblies, celebrations and concerts.

Year 1 continued to work on contrasting delicious and disgusting things to eat, this week using dictionaries, glossaries and word lists to make their own ¡Qué rico! ¡Qué asco! posters. Looking at all the new words was very exciting and some found it hard to choose which to use on their posters. Others were fascinated by the Spanish script in one of the dictionaries.

1AG rico asco

Year 4 and 5 completed their owrk on the weather this week by presenting El pronóstico complete with wigs, glasses and foam microphone. Señora Stevens took so many photographs and videos that she had to keep downloading them to make space for more. Below are some of the photographs. Special mention to Millie, Mya, Aaliyah and Laila for their very expressive and demonstrative 'pop up' weather presenting!

y5 weather

y4 weather
















In the last week of term, we will review our learning over the year and Señora Stevens will be asking people for their highlights of the past year in language learning. If you want your memory or reflection to be shared, be sure to find her next week!

Lo que aprendimos esta semana (Verano 10 y 11)

We may be nearing the end of term but there's still lots of learning going on in Spanish lessons. Year 4 and 5 are busily planning weather forecasts and Year 6 are conjugating verbs to write very short stories about mini figures whilst Year 3 are working on colour and shape in the mosaics of Gaudí - or Gandhi as one child excitedly told Señora Stevens.  However, this time we're going to focus on Spanish in the Acorns.

As Señora Stevens entered the building this week she thought she heard Spanish angelitos singing. Without spoiling the surprise, she is very proud of Nursery and hopes they liked their stickers!

1ag ricoasco1AG have been talking about food they like and don't like in Spanish for the last few weeks. They started by saying ¡ñam! or ¡puaj! to show like or dislike before moving on to say sí por favor if they wanted the food offered or no gracias if they didn't. They've enjoyed the story ¡Qué rico! ¡Qué asco! that contrasts foods that are good to eat and things that you really shouldn't eat like gusanos, polvo and jabón, and their favourite one, mocos. There's been lots of enthusiastic joining in with the repeated sections and they especially enjoyed playing a game with Lewis who is helping with our Spanish lessons for the next few weeks. We also had a conversation about food in others countries; several children mentioned eating snails in France and Naiara was able to explain the picture of the jamón in the story as many children had never seen jamón serrano.

Year 2 have been joyfully singing about washing machines for the last few weeks in class - and at home too it seems from a couple of notes in planners! The contents of Ramón's washing machine has taught us the words for different items of clothing -(see left hand picture) and every week his calcetines que huelen  cause the machine to break down much to our amusement. This week we listened to the story Me visto...¡y te como! in which Señor Lobo gets dressed and... well, what do wolves normally want to do in stories? We sequenced some pictures from the story and matched up the vocabulary used (see right hand picture.) Finally we sang a song about playing in the woods whilst Señor Lobo isn't around. We called ¿Lobo estás? (are you there Mr Wolf?) and each time he replied that he was putting on an item of clothes until he was fully dressed and... You can find out what happens by listening to and watching the song Juguemos en el bosque.


Language Awards - Summer 2016

lang cert optWhen Señora Stevens asked the KS2 Language Leaders for their thoughts on Language Learning and how they'd like to make an impact on the school, they were unanimous in wanting a Language Award. They were also passionate that it should not necessarily be awarded to the best person at Spanish but to someone that is a "good language learner". They picked out some of the characteristics that they thought met this criteria:

  • has a go even if they're not sure.
  • tries hard even when they find it tricky.
  • shows enthusiasm in class.
  • learns languages out of lesson times.
  • encourages other people to use other languages.

Having asked Mrs Allen if they could carry out their plan, the first Language Awards were presented at the end of June. 

Children in Reception to Year 2 were treated to some Polish poems and a Bulgarian song from special guests Stan, Oscar and James in their special assembly, and Ruby and Freya handed out certificates to the inaugural award winners.

Years 3 to 6 enjoyed poems, songs and conversations in French, Spanish, German, Punjabi, Urdu, Japanese, Italian, Arabic and Hindi during their assembly as 3CC and 3JH showed off their linguistic talents in the additonal part of our 'We smile in the same language' celebration. During this assembly each Language Leader gave out the award to the classmate that they had chosen, explaining why they had been chosen. Reasons included 'he always joins in with great enthusiasm', 'Spanish is not their favourite subject but they always give 100%' and 'they listen really well and ask good questions.' 

Each prize winner received a certificate designed by Rohan, one of the Language Leaders, and a special Spanish pencil. 

¡Enhorabuena George, Florence, Sonny, Lyla, Grace, Kai, Jake, Jacob, Oliver, Toby, Hollyanne, James, Eddie, Oliver and Jack! 

The next Language Awards will be awarded just after October half term in the new school year (and Señora Stevens will remember to take photographs this time!)

4365 Sp Reward Pencils Bump opt

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