Federation Family Picnic 2023

We were delighted to invite our families to another Federation Family Picnic on the 28th of June. Hundreds of parents and family members joined us for the event which is now an annual community celebration and special addition to our calendar.

Family members arrived with blankets and picnic lunches and spent time enjoying time to sit, eat and relax together and thankfully the weather was kind.

Each year it’s wonderful to see so many people spending quality time together away from screens, work and other commitments and staff and family members alike commented on how much they enjoyed the event.

We also had a pre loved uniform sale on the day which raised over £300 for the Federation and gave families the chance to save money compared to buying new items.

Thank you to everyone for coming along and also to everyone who donated and purchased our pre loved uniform items.

Wellbeing Afternoon 6th & 9th June 2023

On the 6th and 9th of June parents were welcomed into school to take part in a Federation wellbeing afternoon with their children.

All year groups really enjoyed showing their grown-ups the different activities that we take part in throughout the year to support and promote good wellbeing. At the Infant school these included Cosmic Yoga, mindfulness colouring, board games, origami, making dream-catchers and a nature scavenger hunt. At the Junior school the children in year 3 listened to calming music and had time to focus and be mindful whilst doing some colouring. The pupils also made use of our beautiful outdoor space noticing things in the environment around them, such as the colour of the trees and the sounds all around them.

All of these activities are linked to the ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing’ that we follow within the Federation. These are:

1. Connect

2. Keep learning

3. Be active

4. Give

5. Take notice

A very calm and relaxing time was had by all!

As part of this event the parents were also invited to an information sharing session where they could look at the resources and how PSHE/PATHS and RSE are taught within the Federation.

Social and Emotional Wellbeing Sessions – Summer Term 2023

During Summer 1 Ellise Owen visited all the classes in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. The focus of the wellbeing sessions was Teamwork incorporating ‘Connecting’, which is one of the 5 ways to wellbeing.

Ellise held an assembly for all of the children to discuss the theme of connecting. She also held workshops for each class, which involved them taking part in different games to practise working as a team.

This included working on listening skills, patience, being kind to and communicating well verbally with others. Some of the games included passing objects down the line, moving a balloon with a partner from one end of the hall to the other, moving sensibly around each other when changing places in a circle and passing an imaginary bubble from one person to the next gently.

The children all worked well together as a team and enjoyed the different activities.

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Jeff Rich – Drum workshop

Children at Toftwood were treated to a lesson in Rock n Roll this week when we were visited by Jeff Rich, best known as the drummer from the legendary group Status Quo.

Jeff talked about how he learned to play the drums and the dedication and practice required over many years to hone the skills needed. He invited pupils to try their hand on a range of drums and cymbals as he explained the evolution of drumming from a hollow log slit drum, all the way to the full, professional drum kit that he would use for concerts and recording.

After introducing all the components of the drum kit, from kick drum and high-hat to snare and toms, the ex-Quo drummer dazzled us with an improvised solo. All children (and teachers) were then given percussion instruments and invited to join in a massive jam session!

Mr Hardy was particularly thrilled when Jeff autographed a chord sheet for ‘Rocking all Over the World’ that the Toftwood Ukulele Group played after school that day! (For some reason the veteran Rock n Roller seemed to find Status Quo on the ukulele an amusing idea!)

“It was really loud and really funny!” – Isla-Rose

“When he played, it was amazing and impressive.” – Olivia

“I liked it because we got to use all of the instruments.” – Henri

“He showed us how he improved by practising for hours and hours.” – Imogen

The King’s Coronation Celebration

The children at Toftwood Infant and Junior School have had a celebration fit for a king!

The Federation came together for two days of activities and a special lunch to help celebrate the King’s Coronation. To mark this important occasion, the children dressed were invited to dress up in red, white and blue or as a king or queen.

Over the course of two days the children took part in lots of fun activities including crown making, creating Union Jack flags, learning to sign the National Anthem and naming photos of the royal family. Year one children will also be writing to King Charles next week. A special assembly to commemorate the King’s Coronation led by Janet Marshall took place at both schools.

Children were invited to participate in a competition to decorate a Coronation rock. We were very impressed with the individuality of the children designs which included a corgi, a crown and the Union Jack flag. The children have been given the opportunity to take their rocks home or place them in the community in Toftwood or Dereham. Perhaps you will find one of the special rocks when you take a walk around the locality.

On Thursday we had a special federation picnic lunch which we were lucky enough to have outside and all together. Seeing the children outside laughing, playing and enjoying their time together was a wonderful sight.

What a wonderful two days we have had celebrating such an important historical event and special time for our country. Hopefully very memorable for all the children and staff. A big thank you goes out to our wonderful lunchtime and kitchen staff for their hard work.

World Autism Acceptance Week 2023

The week beginning 27th March was World Autism Acceptance Week and the theme for this year was ‘Colour’. To support this important week we asked each year group to learn about the life of a famous person who is on the Autistic Spectrum.

Reception – Pablo Cbeebies

Y1 – Lewis Carroll

Y2 – Chris Packham

Y3 – Albert Einstein 

Y4- Tim Burton

Y5- Charles Darwin

Y6- Steve Jobs

We wanted the children to understand that Autism comes in all different forms by learning about a range of people. Each year group joined in with an assembly helping them to understand what Autism is and how it can affect people. The children learnt that the brain is our body’s computer and it can work differently for all of us. It controls how we feel, learn and communicate. We discussed the importance of connecting with others to help our wellbeing and mental health. Everyone is unique and this is something as a Federation we like to celebrate.

“So he just kept trying and didn’t give up”. (Yr 2 Chris Packham

“He has a brain like me. Sometimes when I’m in crowds I don’t like it”. (Yr2)

“That man is like me. I love nature and animals”. (Yr 2 Chris Packham) In Reception the children watched an episode of Pablo (Cbeebies) and talked about how he had felt going to a noisy birthday party. They made brightly coloured rainbows to support the colour theme.

Comic Relief – Red Nose Day 2023

To support ‘Red Nose Day’ this year the children of the School Council asked pupils and staff across the Federation to take part in a non-uniform day. They made posters for every classroom to advertise the event and also asked their peers to add the colour red to their outfit if they could.

During the day both schools discussed the work of the Comic Relief charity and took part in an assembly. The School Council helped to collect donations from their class and the treasurer counted this at the end of the day.

A huge thank you to everyone who donated to the Comic Relief charity. We raised a grant total of £477.99!

British Sign Language lesson as part of Sign Language Week 2023

On Wednesday 15th March, the children in Year 1 and Year 2 took part in a British Sign Language lesson. The children learnt different signs for a range of words including “Good Morning”, names for members of their families, the colour names and names of animals or pets.

The children all really enjoyed learning the different signs and were able to use the “Good afternoon” to answer the register after lunch!

World Book Day 2023 TJS

Thursday 2nd March was World Book Day. At the junior school we celebrated by enjoying all things “book related”.

Many of the children came in some amazing costumes, which we looked at in assembly. All the teachers shared their favourite books from their childhood; there was a wide variety from Narnia to picture books by Julia Donaldson.

Later in the morning, we were very fortunate to enjoy a live webinar with the children’s author Michael Morpurgo. He talked about what inspired him to become a writer and read some material we hadn’t heard before.

All the children received their Book Day £1 voucher to spend on a book of their choice from the special World Book Day collection.

World Book Day in Year 3, Spring 2, 2023

This year, we asked the children to dress up as a character from their favourite storybook and to bring their book in.

We enjoyed the assembly where we listened to Mrs Hughes introduce World Book Day and saw all the teachers dressed up in their world book day costumes which was very funny. All the teachers had chosen very different costumes!

In class, we used one of our reading techniques to ‘skim’ the text for interesting words as we were making our very own vocabulary dozen for our books.  We loved ‘skimming’ as it is a new technique we have been taught and we thought it was lots of fun. 

We were creating a story hat and were putting the vocab on bands across our heads.  Once we had chosen our 12 words, we drew the main characters from our books and placed these on our hats. 

Some of us, then chose four words from the vocab dozen to intersperse between our characters.

We had a great time. We really enjoyed bringing our books to life and sharing them with our friends.

World Book Day 2023 – TIS


The children have had lots of fun dressing up for World Book Day and sharing their favourite stories. They played “Name that story,” which was a game involving guessing the traditional tale, when given some clues. The children also focussed on The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, Owl Babies by Martin Waddle and Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell. They looked at photographs of the authors and answered questions linked to these stories.

Year 1

In year 1, the children focused on a series of stories by Tom Fletcher from, There’s an Alien in your Book and There’s a Unicorn in your book to There’s a Witch in your Book and There’s a Superhero in your Book.

The children planned and wrote their own book using the same template, including using imperative verbs and making the book interactive for the audience! They designed their own front covers and look forward to taking their books home to share with their families.


Year 2

In Year 2, the children looked at the book ‘Inside The Villains.’ The children thought of synonyms for ‘big’ and ‘bad’ to come up with new ways to describe the ‘big, bad wolf.’ The children then thought about designing their own villain, and wrote a character profile to include their appearance, enemies, strengths, weaknesses and favourite food! The children used their DT skills by creating their villain with moving parts. It was great to see the children thinking of imaginative characters and ways to make different parts of their character move. We made our own class book of villains so the children can enjoy looking at each others’ villains.