Catching up on Crew Hangouts

Each week since COVID-19 caused schools to close we’ve been having Crew over Google Hangouts. It’s been wonderful to see Crew and have a chat to them, despite not able to be all together. We’ve not yet managed a whole crew hangouts – our maximum being 10 out of 12 members getting involved at once so it’d be great if we can all reunite soon!

Our conversations have covered what we’ve each been up to since the lockdown, how we’re getting on with completing work and our highlights and lowlights of the week. It’s been lovely to hear that crew having been busy baking, going out walking, going on bike rides, watching Netflix (Tiger King generated a lot of conversation the other week!), chatting to each other on PS4 and trying not to go stir crazy!

One of my favourite sessions we’ve had was today when we shared photos of us as babies/toddlers. Thanks for sharing these Crew – what a cute bunch you were!

Can other students/staff guess which photo belongs to which Crew member? Email me your answers!

Crew member 1:

Crew member 2:

Crew member 3:


Crew member 4:

Crew member 5:


Rising to the Challenge!

I think it’s fair to say that, even though we’re not in school and have the challenge of working at home, our staff and students in E26 (Year7) and E25 (Year 8) are still Working Hard, Getting Smart and Being Kind.

Over the last couple of weeks, we have seen determination (when the work has been tricky), compassion (when helping our fellow crew members who have been stuck) and the completion of so much beautiful work, ranging from stand-out science assessments, amazing artwork, passionate speeches and marvellous maths!

Here are just a few appreciations for students and their beautiful achievements:

Oliver. S. (E26):

Jayden (E26):

Marcus (E25):

Cerrina (E26):

Raphael (E26):

Marshall (E25):


Quality Work from Crew Parkinson!

We’re now in week 5 of lockdown and Crew have been very busy. It’s lovely to catch up with Crew each week using Google Hangouts – we check in to see how everyone is and what they’ve been doing. It’s great to hear that Crew have been out on bike rides, baking and dog walks – it’s so lucky that we’ve had this lovely weather to enjoy.

It’s also been fantastic to see how each student is taking responsibility for their own learning and responding so maturely to the change to normality. Have a look at the quality work Crew have been producing:

  • in Art students have been producing waves in the style of ‘The Great Wave’ by Hokusai – here’s Marcus and Ava’s fantastic work: 
  • In Hums to end the ‘I’ve Got the Power’ expedition, students have been analysing persuasive articles and writing their own – here are examples again of Marcus and Ava’s articles on whether power is a force for good or not.
  • Callum also worked super hard on this article, always trying to push himself and Get Smart – here’s an email I received from him so that he could respond to my feedback before the final submission – what a responsible and hard working young man! 


  • Rosie also blew me away with her commitment to analysing an article by Jo Butler – answering the question ‘How does Jo Butler try to convince the reader that British people are being taken for granted?’ – here’s her great response!


  • Last but not least, over to maths! Aaron has been working above and beyond on Hegarty maths – it was lovely to be copied into this email from Mr Nixon to Aaron and his Mumwhat a superstar!


I’m so impressed with all crew members – here’s just a selection of work and praise but I’m so proud of everyone for how they have adapted to these times – I love checking in with Crew each week and hope you all continue to work hard and play hard!

Stay safe everyone

Still Smiling in Crew Parkinson!

We said goodbye to each other on Friday and we’re not sure when we will be back in school again. We’re in very uncertain times as a country right now but what really made me proud was how mature Crew has been over the last week. We had some very sincere discussions about how we were feeling about what is happening right now and it has been a pleasure to spend time with them.

 Despite the seriousness of the situation and the sombre tone in Crew this week we have still managed to look on the positive side and come together as a Crew. It’s been great hearing how we’re going to check in and support each other during the school closure.

We don’t know when we’ll all be back together again but I can honestly say I’m going to miss my Crew. They never fail to bring a smile to my face (even when they’re driving me mad) and it’s great to spend another year with them – it’s strange thinking these could be the last photos of year 8 – but who knows? While we are all social distancing at home, I wish Crew and their families the very best and if you have any worries or questions, I’m only an email away.

Please continue with all your hard work at home and take responsibility for your academic development. Whilst it is important to continue with your school work, in these challenging times, it’s also important to keep a positive mindset and look after your wellbeing so keep time free to do what you enjoy (as long as you’re social distancing!).

For now, keep being bonkers – huzzah and hurrah!

E25 Human Work During School Closure

It’s good to see some students already starting their online learning assignments. Here are the instructions on how to complete the work set. This was shared with students in lessons but those who were absent last week will have missed them. They must READ all the instructions on the slides/Google Classroom.

Submitting work 

  • Currently on Google Classroom, there are 2 assignments set. Students need to complete the Geography one FIRST and then the English slides. They should submit the doc on Google classroom once they have got to the end of each slide. 

What to complete and when

  • Each set of slides are broken down into ‘lessons’, students need to complete a minimum of a lesson a day or follow the ‘weekly planner’ timetable sent out my Mr Portman each week.
  • Whenever the students see a red ‘TASK’ symbol which looks like the one below they need to complete the activity on their doc.


  • On the docs, work needs to have the layout of:

           Subject: Geography/English/History

           Lesson Number:



Students need to write in Quicksand font, size 12.

If you have any questions, email me at I will be checking emails everyday and student work completion – if work is not being done, parents will be contacted.

Thank you!

Crew Parkinson’s Clean Up Crew

This week, Crew Parkinson had our clean up crew session. We went out litter picking on the school grounds and braved the weather to do our bit. We discussed stewardship and why it’s important to clean up litter for environmental reasons and to make our area look better so it’s more enjoyable to be in. Here we are in action:

E25 Sponsored Walk for the Conversation Club

On the 26/11/19, E25 will be taking part in a 5km sponsored walk or run. This will be part of their HUMAN expedition ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go?’ and will take place during their PE session.

We will be raising money for the Conversation Club, a charity in Doncaster who supports asylum seekers and refugees. This charity is vital in creating a support network for people who have had to flee their country due to political and religious persecution.

Earlier in the expedition, we were lucky enough to be visited by a group of asylum seekers who are supported by the Conversation Club. It was lovely to see the students so engrossed in listening to the stories of each of the asylum seekers but also sharing a laugh with them too! The students were shocked by some of the reasons why our visitors had to flee, what would’ve happened to them if they had stayed and were moved by the stories of being separated from their family and the emotional impact this has. It was also interesting to hear how many misconceptions there are in society about asylum seekers and by speaking to our visitors we all learnt a lot about this.

We were pleased to hear our visitors enjoyed the experience of visiting our school as much as we enjoyed having them!

Asylum seekers have to live on only £37.75 a week and any support they receive from the Conversation Club is funded through charity and the kindness of volunteers. E25 and X25 will be taking part in this event (separately) so we have the potential to raise a lot for this charity.  We will be taking part in other fundraising activities throughout this term to raise more money towards this cause.  If each student can be sponsored £1 then it will be a massive help in reaching our target amount for the charity, but feel free give as little, or as much as you can.

Students were handed a sponsor form last week in crew but if they have lost it then they can ask myself or Miss Johnson for another one.

Without wanting to get political it is important to remember instead that these are people who just want to secure their safety. Our character traits of respect and compassion ring out in the students when they get involved with members of our community in this way and I am be proud to work with such mature and compassionate students at XP EAST.



Crew Parkinson’s week looked like this:

Monday – weekend check-ins, I love hearing what Crew gets up to during their weekends and they always have plenty of questions to ask each other about their activities

Tuesday – we did our Star reader test. Reading is so important for increasing vocabulary and academic progress, so as part of the accelerated reader programme, students complete a Star reader test multiple times a year to measure their reading age and progress. The next time we have an accelerated reader crew session we agreed we will begin a book recommendation chart to share great books and help crew find others which may be of interest.

Wednesday – students who were helping out at the open evening had a chance to speak to the member of staff they were helping out to organise what they would be doing that night – I’d like to appreciate all members of Crew Parkinson who helped out on either or both of the evenings, we couldn’t have done it without you!

Thursday – this was our activity day so we had a session on team building, students were in groups of 4 and had to build the tallest free-standing tower made of balloons and sellotape. The winning team was Shanna, Dylan, Rosie and Kris thanks to their speedy balloon blowing up skills and great design. Here’s how they did:

Friday – We looked at the praise sheet and poor conduct sheet this session. I’m thrilled to have 10 out of the 12 crew members on the praise sheet, many multiple times and across a variety of sessions. However, we also discussed the entries on the poor conduct form where 6 members of crew unfortunately appeared. We discussed how this made us feel and shared our thoughts on the reasons that these members were on – when we look next week we hope there will be no members of Crew Parkinson added to the poor conduct sheet!

But to end on a positive, here are some of the praise sheet entries for Crew Parkinson:

Callum : “Made a comment in Hums today about the work being hard, but was trying all throughout and made some great contributions! Keep up the hard work!”

Aaron : “Increased contribution in Hums – great to see Aaron putting his hand up more and offering answers, keep it up!”

Kristian : “A series of excellent maths lessons, mega impressed with Kristian’s focus and how he works with those around him – keep it up!”

Ava : “Consistently working hard in class [science], quick to start tasks and giving detailed answers.”

Bob : “Bob showed great resilience when learning an 8 Beat on the drums during Music.”

Lacey : “Lacey has been concentrating really well and working hard in her art lessons.”


What makes Crew Parkinson happy?

Each member of crew brought either a photo or an item in which either makes, or represents, something that makes them happy.

It was lovely hearing about the hobbies that Crew does. For example, Callum and his fishing to Marcus and Fortnite to Florence, Rosie and Dylan and their various types of dancing. There were also lots of lovely photos of crew member’s dogs – I always love a cute dog photo!

It was great for crew to share their interests and hobbies with the everyone, why they enjoy them and how it makes them feel. It acted as a great starting point which sparked some very interesting conversations!

Star Bakers in Crew Parkinson!

Last week we had a baking crew session, making chocolate muffins. Crew worked really well as a team, dividing out the different roles of mixing, measuring and washing up to name a few. They helped each other throughout with everyone getting stuck in and having no passengers. Eating muffins was a lovely addition to our weekly Monday check-in  – shame we can’t do it every week!