Gatherings

Faith at Home

The Church of England have created a website to support children from Christian families in developing their faith whilst stuck at home. Please see the link below if you are interested.

Our friends at CSALT have sent us this reflection to think about at home:

 

What are we thinking about today?

Is it the negatives of the Coronavirus situation?

The restrictions we have in our lives from something we cannot see or really understand that worries and concern us?

Why not think about all the good things and blessings that we have especially those that come from sources unseen and not known to us.

The many examples of helpfulness and kindness now being shown to others often by people they have never met. The commitment of people to protect us sometimes at great risk and cost to themselves

Why not consider the great unseen God and the many good things and blessing we have from Him.

Especially by thinking of His great love when he sent his Son Jesus to die for us in order to be our Saviour.

 

They have suggested you sing 'Count Your Blessings' which can be found on the Out of the Ark site (see below link and go to the Wednesday of Week 6)

Singing Gatherings
 

Do you miss gathering together on a Wednesday morning to sing together as a school?

 

Fortunately, the kind people at Out of the Ark Music who produce many of the songs we sing in school have put their Words on Screen version of their songs online for free. So now you can sing along at home to some of your favourite songs and perhaps challenge yourself to learn a new song.  Just click on the link below...

Mr Doughty's Guide to Singing Gatherings at Home

Singing is a great way of raising your spirits and feeling good. The words of the songs (known as lyrics) are also a way of reflecting on and learning about important things in life such as caring for each other and our environment.  I will set out a guide to each week's songs from Out of the Ark Music to help you recognise familiar songs and recommend a new song to try and learn.

 

Just as in our Singing Gatherings, I'll finish with a reflection on what the songs mean. If you are from a religious family, you may wish to use the reflection as a prayer to God (or Allah if you prefer to say His name in Arabic), and we can all use them to think about how they may help us in our lives. 

 

Stay safe everyone and I look forward to us raising the roof with our extra loud singing when we're all back together in school.

 

Mr Doughty

Week 7

 

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty, Good morning everybody!)

 

In normal times this would be the last week of school and we would be looking forward to our half term holiday. Hopefully, you have been working just as hard at home on your learning grids. However, next week is still a holiday and no work has been set by your teachers so make sure you have a break and stay safe as you hopefully enjoy the early summer sunshine.

 

Our friends at Out of the Ark music have changed around their website to make it easier to find songs by different themes. Singing is a great way of expressing your feelings so you can now find songs that match your mood. So to get you up and going look in the ‘Getting Going’ section or if you are missing your friends then try a song from the ‘In it Together’ section.  If you fancy a challenge, then I recommend the first song from the ‘In it Together’ section called ‘7 days a Week’ as it has a signing version. Just follow the lady in the video as she teaches you how to sign the words as you sing them.

 

Reflection Time

 

For our Muslim children, this is the last week of the holy month of Ramadan. You may have been joining with the older members of your family in fasting, saying extra prayers with your family at home as the Mosques are closed, or doing good deeds for others including giving money to the poor. We pray that Allah will bless you for your many good deeds in Ramadan and that you will enjoy the Eid celebrations this weekend even if this year it has to be with just your immediate family – Eid Mubarak!

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Week 6

 

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty, Good morning everybody!)

 

I hope you enjoyed the VE Day commemorations and the fabulous weather last weekend. 

As we sang 'We'll meet again, don't know where, don't know when, but I know we'll meet again some sunny day", were you hoping and praying like me that we would all be back in school soon? Well it is looking as if our prayers may be answered soon as the Prime Minister announces he would like at least some children to start returning to school next month.

 

In the meantime, it's really important that we all continue to play our part in preventing the transmission of the corona virus by continuing to stay safe, wash our hands and keep 2 metres away from others when exercising outside the house.

 

Time for some music to keep our spirits up!  In the Out of the Ark Songs at Home Week 6 the Wednesday song is one our friends at CSALT (the fuzzy felt guys) recommend - Count your Blessings.  Then if you'd like to try a new song, have a go at Week 7 Saturday - 'Put on a smile' which reminds us how we can help out someone in our family who is feeling down by putting on a smile or lending them a hand.

 

Reflection Time

For our reflection this week, I suggest you read the reflection from our friends at CSALT at the top of this page and then sing the song they recommend of Count your Blessings.

Week 5

 

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty, Good morning everybody!)

 

This week’s songs from Out of the Ark (Week 5) start with a great song to get you going in the morning: 'Wake up! Wake up! Give yourselves a shake up!'. Something to try out as a warm up to your daily PE lesson with Joe Wicks.

 

How are you getting on learning the song ready for the 75th anniversary of VE Day this Friday? There is a lovely gathering by Canon Beverley that explains the significance of this day and what it meant to her father who was just in Reception class when it happened. Here's the link again to the song with the lyrics.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJKMji2688M

 

Reflection Time

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I hope you manage to join in some of the VE day celebrations on Friday, even if you have to wait until sunset to have some tea and cake in Ramadan. Canon Beverley ends her gathering with a lovely reflection of being thankful for those who defended our country and celebrated the end of war 75 years ago. She prays for all those fighting the corona virus and caring for those who are ill and staying home to keep everyone safe. Finally she asks us to think how we could celebrate the end of our war against the corona virus.  Amen. 

Week 4

 

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty, Good morning everybody!)

Sadly the Government have told us that the lockdown must continue for at least another 3 weeks. There is good news however that the number of infections and hospital admissions for the corona virus is falling, so although it's hard, it is proving worthwhile so stay home, stay safe and as Captain Tom reminds us 'the sun will shine again'.

 

This week’s songs from Out of the Ark (Week 4) sadly don't include any of the songs that we know and love at St James. By all means do listen to them and if there is one that you particularly like then let me know and we can all learn it when we are back in school. 

 

We all  have a song that we can learn this week ready for the 75th anniversary of VE Day that is on your home schooling tasks for this week. VE Day means 'Victory in Europe' at the end of the Second World War in 1945. My parents were at school at that time and I remember they told me that it wasn't particularly a victory over an enemy that they celebrated but just the end to fighting and war. Families longed to see their fathers, brothers and sons return from fighting so that they could meet them again. That is why the soldiers loved to hear this song 'We'll meet again' as it gave them hope they would see their families again when the war was over. 

 

It is just as appropriate for us today too as we sing  'We'll Meet Again'. It reminds us that, even if we feel a little lonely and sad now, we will soon meet up with each other again in school. Here's the link again to the song with the lyrics.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJKMji2688M

 

Reflection Time

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I hope you have managed to see a little of the news coverage of Captain Tom, the 99 year old former soldier from World War Two who has raised nearly £30 million for the NHS and who would have sung this song during the war and thought of his family at home in England. It is Captain Tom's 100th Birthday this Thursday so please do stop and say a prayer for him and join in with singing him a very special 'Happy Birthday to you'.

He is a great inspiration to many people that although times may be difficult, we can pray that there will be happier times ahead for us to look forward to. Amen/Ameen

Week 3

 

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty, Good morning everybody!)

Although the Easter holidays are now over, we sadly cannot be back together yet in school. But the light is at the end of the tunnel and as the wonderful 99 year old Captain Tom reassured us all this week when he reminded us that the sun will shine again.

This week’s songs from Out of the Ark (Week 3) include two songs again that we know and love at St James. Wednesday’s song ‘Water, Food Rest and Exercise’ reminds us that even with the current lockdown, it’s important to have a good balance in our lives and make sure we eat well, sleep well and get some exercise every day.

Sunday’s song ‘Celebrate’ is a great song to celebrate Easter with lots of clapping and dancing around.

Have you eaten all your Easter eggs already?  I know I have, so how about learning Saturday’s new song 'The Chocolate Song' that celebrates chocolate Easter eggs.

 

Reflection Time

All that singing about chocolate Easter eggs has reminded me that our Muslim children will be starting their holy month of Ramadan this Friday. Muslims around the world will be fasting during daylight hours as a way of being thankful for the gift of food from Allah (the Arabic word for God) and thinking of those less fortunate who may not have enough food by giving money to charity.  We wish all our Muslim friends a generous Ramadan = Ramaden Kareem. May we all be inspired to be thankful for the food we have and think of others less fortunate than ourselves. Amen/Ameen

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Week 2

Well first of all, I apologise for not starting last week's singing gathering correctly so here goes...

Good morning everybody! (Good morning Mr Doughty! Good morning everybody!)

 

Welcome to our second virtual singing gathering. How did you get on with learning The Bonkers Song? I'm looking forward to splitting into parts to sing it all together when we come back to school. You can go back to Week 1 and practise your favourite part as a warm up.

 

This week we have two more familiar songs to sing (Look in Week 2 part of the website in the Out of the Ark @ Home link above). The Friday song is always very popular with Key Stage 1 children as they flap their wings in the Spring Chicken dance. One advantage of being at home is that you can dance like a chicken around your home as you sing along.

 

The Sunday song (Everywhere Around Me) reminds us to celebrate and give thanks for all the wonderful things around us. This might include all the delicious chocolate creations you may have received for Easter.

 

The new song I suggest you try this week is Tuesday's song 'A Little Bit of Kindness'. It is an excellent reminder that as we enter another week of staying home together, to protect the NHS and save lives then taking a few minutes to be kind to each other goes a long way to keep us all happy. If its not too late for you, perhaps you can join in with the thank you to NHS staff and carers on Thursday at 8pm.

Reflection Time

Reflection Time 1

If you did celebrate the Christian festival of Easter this weekend with your family, we hope that you rejoiced in the Good News that Jesus is risen and we pray for His blessings on all our friends and family. People of all faiths and none celebrate together the arrival of spring and the signs of new life all around them.

 

The Easter story is one of life conquering over death and hope for the future. Let's enjoy looking for those signs all around us that new life is starting and pray that we will all soon be back together with our friends in school. Amen/Ameen

Week 1

Two of the songs in the Week 1 section are old favourites: Together (Tuesday) and Living and Learning (Thursday). 

 

Although it may feel lonely at times as we all 'Stay Home, Protect the NHS and Safe Lives', we can still feel "Together" in spirit and look forward to the day when we will be back together filling our school with fun, laughter and learning.

 

Living and Learning very much reminds us in these uncertain times that life is still moving along. I hope when you go out once a day on your daily exercise that you are looking out for all the signs of Spring blossoming around us.

 

Are you up for a challenge?  Do you want to learn a new song?  I recommend you have a go at Friday's The Bonkers Song. There are four parts and I recommend you start by just singing the first part all the way through as you listen to the other parts coming in and singing in harmony.  Then go on to learn one of the other parts.  Why not challenge other people in your household to learn a different part and then try and sing it together?

Reflection Time

Reflection Time 1
The Bonkers song is definitely an appropriate title for these strange times but we can take comfort in knowing that we are all working together as we stay at home, protect the NHS and help save lives.  We can take a moment to think about how we miss all being together, learning in the classroom, playing on the playground and singing together on a Wednesday morning. We pray that God will bless all our families and friends and keep them safe until we can all be back together in school.   Amen/Ameen