We made it!


I just can’t say it enough about Crew Tubman, they continually blow me away with how resilient they are and have participated in all that has been thrown at them.


From taking part in off screen activities to writing and composing songs! this little bunch has been what has kept me sane and going through this incredibly challenging time. I honestly don’t think i could have done it without them. them and of course our honorary crew member Niamh who is 4 she has brought us a little ray of sunshine and joy to our crew check ins in the morning.


— Across the Finish Line

As you all know I am extremely proud of this Crew. Crew Tubman have shown they are XP through and through.



They have shown many of our character traits, most importantly, they have shown…


  • To put ourselves outside our comfort zone to develop and deepen our learning and character

Looking deeper into this our students have shown great courage in learning on line and being greatly out of their comfort zones and yet have still carried on regardless.


  •  To build resilience, responsibility and a never give up attitude.

By continuing to take responsibility for their own learning, turning up and mostly on time, to online learning and completing work in a way that has never been done before. They are making history as you read this!

Never in the history of kids going to school have kids ever had to do what our students are doing right now? No kids in the history of kids have ever had to do school at home, sitting in their bedroom, watching their teacher on a computer, staying focused surrounded by many distractions and often feeling like it is groundhog day. Our students are making history!

We haven’t given them nearly enough credit for rolling with the punches. I’ve told Crew Tubman how proud I am of them. That kids this year are doing the impossible and they’re doing a really great job.

We’ve thanked everyone from healthcare workers to grocery store employees but we haven’t thanked the kids enough for bearing the burden of what we’ve put on their shoulders this year.

We’ve said kids are resilient, and they are. But they are the real superheroes in this whole scenario for having ZERO say in their lives but doing their best to adjust every day. 




We also saw Student Led Conferences last week and they have worked really hard, to again do something that is daunting, unknown to them and challenging. Not only from understanding how they need to deliver it, but also dealing with the technicalities requires on top of presenting, and they took it all in their stride..

The students worked towards presenting their progression so far in HOWLs grades, Academic Progress and Minimum Expected Grade as well as how they have adapted. Sharing their highs and their lows, looking at how we can hold themselves and each other accountable and looking at our areas of improvement as well as celebrating our successes, as Lidija has done here.

Lidija’s words…

I feel that this is a beautiful piece of work, i feel like this because i spent a lot of time on It.

I used mixed media art, which is mixed art supplies used to create a piece of art. 

I am really proud of this work because i spent a lot of time on it and it came out looking very good.

My art is a recreation of a piece of art by Rowan Leckie Our learning target was LT: i can mix and apply watercolour paint with accuracy in a near and controlled manner.



After completing their Student Led Conferences we took a moment to discuss how we felt that we grew from our experience, how we had progressed, what we would do differently and how we overcame our fears. I guess you could say they felt the fear and did it anyway!


Well done Crew Tubman – another great achievement.

— Just keep swimming

We thought it was time that we let you know we have finally chosen our crew name. The students worked long and hard deliberating over who would best represent us and how we felt about crew, ourselves and each other.

There were many names researched and presented but we finally settled on ….

Harriet Tubman

This was Darcy’s suggestion and we all felt that she perfectly captured what we as a crew were about through Harriets legacy.


Here are the important values that we felt we as a crew, shared with Harriet, and if we did’t have theses values, we would aspire to them.

“We chose this name because we can relate to her because she was brave, She showed integrity, she stood for honour, she stood for truth, she stood for equality, she didn’t give up and she stood up for the right to do amazing things.” Evie

“We chose this person because she is independent and she escaped slavery at the age of thirteen which was a big accomplishment – proving that we can accomplish whatever we put our hearts and minds to. She showed our character traits and we felt she represents our crew.” Nenna

“We think she is a good role model because she showed integrity and courage by standing up for what was right and the courage to stand by her beliefs even though she could have lost her life. She took responsibility for her family and went back to save them from being slaves.” Riley

Snow Day

Very proud of my crew as they have continued to turn up for crew and lessons regardless. They really are showing perseverance and commitment to their learning.

Special mention

One person who I am particularly proud of this week is Jasmin. She has also been made this weeks honorary Vice President, (in honour of the recent Inauguration). As she has supported our crew not only in session but has given up her own time to do a little hang out with a small group of crew members, to support them with their understanding of an extended study maths task. I was impressed with her leadership and supportive skills. Not only did she guide but she checked with them for understanding. Asking relevant open questions to gather whether they had understood what they had done. Truly inspiring. Fantastic integrity and compassion Jaz!


Winning Formula

We are currently top of the leaderboard in our howls across the board! This is a great start to the year, but it doesn’t mean we can rest on that achievement. We now have to work at maintaining and improving that! Watch this space I know they will smash it.


“Stay safe and take care”

From Crew Tubman

— Its all in a name…

Little things make a big difference!

Our crew have been working together this term and we have produced this blog as a crew.

This Christmas we are helping the French-gate centre support the Trussell Trust Foundation which is the largest food bank in the UK. Each of us are doing our bit by donating either socks or chocolate (if you’re feeling generous then both). These gifts are going to people in poverty who don’t have these luxuries, and they will receive these gifts every time they go to a food bank in the coming festive weeks.

It is important to give chocolate and socks to the people that aren’t as fortunate as us. During Christmas time children will not feel as left out around their friends, it would also put a smile on their face and that makes us happy. People who need the gifts will go to the food-bank during Christmas time and get a gift to open. It will help the food bank provide more for those who are in poverty this year.

What we are doing is giving people who aren’t as fortunate as ourselves items like chocolate and socks. We are doing this because we want people to be happy on Christmas day and so they have items under their tree on that delightful day. Thanks to charities like food banks these people can get the items they need to make them happy. 


It’s important because it helps people in poverty or people who can’t afford good things like socks or chocolate. We ask people to help out that little bit for Christmas just because a lot of kids and people don’t have any presents under the tree so we ask you to help out just that little bit for everyone else who deserves a Christmas. The littlest gifts we give mean the world to some adults and children living in poverty or that are less fortunate, that’s why at Christmas we give gifts

We have learnt that poverty is a lot more common in places like Glasgow, London and even Doncaster. We found that Poverty was more common than we initially thought. It’s not just homeless people but that is not the case even people with a job can be in poverty, not able to pay all their bills or buy enough food. It is very difficult to get out of but easy to get into and will change a lot of things in our lives, it can change your relationships, friends, people in your life. Although benefits help they are not enough to live comfortably. Many people still have no where near enough and with people limited to a few food bank vouchers a month, this becomes quite difficult.

At this time of year helping charities and people less fortunate than ourselves helps us to remember to be grateful for the things we have and that gifts need to come from the heart, that you think about the gift you are giving and how it can benefit that person.

Many thanks for reading our Blog.

Have a lovely Christmas see you all again in the new year.

Embracing the unknown!

Well what can i say?

I am so proud of our Y7s! They have adjusted to the change brilliantly, at a time where there is so much uncertainty, they have got themselves set up, found out what they needed to do and cracked on!


Online learning isn’t the easiest, but I have been seeing their happy little faces every morning on time (for the most part) and ready to learn. we’ve had the odd onesie but on the whole i’m really impressed with the maturity and punctuality of our students at a time when its easier to give up and stay in bed. A HUGE well done to you all. I’m really looking forward to seeing you back in school.


During isolation we have looked at our Habits Of Working and Learning (HOWLs) and we have made our pledges to make these better, but to be fair i am really impressed with my crew, great HOWLs all round.



In fundraising news:

Staff have been working extra hard to support Save the Children Charity, by selling home made gifts raising a whopping £339! we hope to increase this when the children wear their Christmas jumpers on the 11th December…

So don’t forget your £1 and your Christmas jumper, but don’t worry if you don’t have a jumper, you can wear anything christmasy and still bring a £1, its all for a great cause.

It’s great to see Everyone back this week and we are full steam ahead. I’m really impressed with everyones’ commitment to learning and crew NML (soon to be renamed, watch this space…) are really settling in well. The involvement level of our crew sessions are developing, with richer conversation as we grow to trust and respect each other, in the safe environment we have nurtured during our first half term. Already I have seen them grow emotionally in this short time. I’m very excited to see how we will develop further.

One of the topics we have been investigating has been poverty. The students have asked lots of questions and have been able to empathise with the situations many people find themselves in. Some discussion turned, driven by the children, to problem solving and looking at ways in which they could make the lives of people in poverty better and what they thought they could do instead. From batch cooking meals to up-cycling, free-cycling and food banks.

During our community meeting we discussed this further with other crews, using a silent conversation. This is where the students were able to read, question, discuss and annotate other students written responses to a text. The text detailed someones (an adult) personal experience of poverty. After unpicking the information the students made their own contributions before passing it on to the next group for their input. It was really encouraging to see that this was also where students gained a good understanding of what it was to be in poverty, as some students were unable to connect to this subject before this activity.

I have also been really impressed by how the students are taking all this, uncertainty and change, in their stride, having to wear face-masks around school and in the corridors. Many students holding others accountable showing fantastic integrity and respect, by reminding fellow students to wear their masks. If we all do the right thing then everyone will be safe. Definitely a community minded bunch. Well done guys, keep going you are doing amazing.



Howls Reflection

During this half term we will begin to understand how engaging in and taking ownership of our own learning can really make a difference. Being mindful of our choices and using the people and resources around us to help when we find things difficult and be a kind and considerate community member by helping others when we know what we are doing. Making sure we are the leaders of our own learning.


And finally this week we have seen the launch of our eagerly awaited reading scheme. Students have downloaded the App and now have access to a wide range of reading material based on their reading ability. ask them to give you a tour.

See you soon…

— Welcome Back!

Single Stories…

Hi All!

great to see you all here again! One of the many things we have been looking at during our crew, is what it means to have a single story. Stories matter, they help us to understand the world. But all too often we have little information and form opinions that give us a single story… a viewpoint that isn’t quite accurate. This can become unintentionally damaging. We watched a TED talk (click on the link to see) about a successful author, but that her early writing had been from a single point of view. It had been from one perspective and with a small amount of information. She identified the problem with having single stories, how it can prevent us from truly connecting to the world around us and each other and how this can link to stereotypes, racism and unintentional damage from ill informed opinions.

I was so proud of our crew, we had fantastic thought provoking conversations, where we discussed at length our opinions, how these were formed, whether we had challenged these and sought other information to back this up, or if we had just taken things on face value. It was literally a light bulb moment for most of us and I am truly humbled at the thoughtfulness, mindfulness, courage and integrity of some of the wonderfully talented pupils that I get to work with.

Beautiful work

In Art, one of our newest crew members, Ben, produced this fantastic observational drawing. We are so proud of it and it is now hanging in pride of place on our crew wall. 

It’s hard to tell which one is the copy 🙂

Fantastic Work


It’s nice to be appreciated.


And finally for now, we have been taking time during our crew sessions to appreciate each other for our HOWLs (Habits of Working and Learning) and our character traits, by writing them a sticky note and popping it on our crew appreciation wall for all to see. At the end of the week pupils collect them up, read them and hand them out. We’ve started to collect some lovely thoughts on there already; Jasmin shared her amazing friends duck picture, which is also now on our crew wall.











Building the foundations

This week we have started to look at choosing our Crew name

The pupils were asked to think about the dynamics of our crew, the types of characters in it and how we are as a crew. Are we calm, caring, creative and understanding? or loud, fussy, mad, emotional? or even a mixture of all of these?

Building on form this, to look for an influential figure, (past or present) that would link to this and stand as a good role model that also resonates with our character values of :





Craftsmanship and quality

Joshua had some great ideas, showing courage by sharing these for critique and to help us with our own ideas. Some really thoughtful choices coming along, can’t wait to see what else we can bring to the table. Here is Joshua’s thoughts for our crew name…

“I have two chosen to represent us, the first is a main and the second is the backup. This was an explanation on how this would work…let’s begin.

Elon Musk

  • The way he has shown integrity is by devoting his whole life to save the planet like developing electric cars.
  • The way he has shown compassion is during the financial crisis Elon injected all of his money into Tesla to stop the company from going under.
  • He has shown respect by saying he respects the justice system
  • Elon has shown courage by being willing to send rockets into space despite being told it was a bad investment.
  • He has shown craftsmanship and quality by sending four rockets into space and correcting his mistakes every time.

David Beckham

  • David Beckham has shown integrity by starting his own charity and becoming UNICEF ambassador.
  • He has shown compassion by putting many years into perfecting the thing he enjoys.
  • I couldn’t find anything on respect (other than his fragrance) but I’m sure he has shown respect in some ways.
  • He has shown courage by speaking his mind and not being afraid of what  people think.

Joshua has clearly thought out how these people link to our core values, but I wonder how they link to us as a crew? Looking forward to hearing your responses, choices and reasons guys.

Continuing with beautiful work Louis inspired his class mates this week with this fantastic effort in Art. His peers all gathered round to learn what he did in order to achieve this level of observational drawing!

We would also like to welcome our new crew member Ben, we are so pleased to have him in our crew. He has fitted right in as if he has always been with us! 

And finally, for now, our crew have been using their heads, working together and building new friendships. A great start for a strong future!

Off to a flying start

Hi All,
An amazing start from crew NML, I’m so proud of how they have all come together and found a connection with each other. Through crew we have been looking at “getting to know you.” One of the things we have been looking at is diversity within our crew, through this we have seen similarities as well as differences and how we respect each others values, ideas, likes, dislikes, religions, hobbies and taste. Recognising that we can still be friends and help someone even if they don’t share the same ideals we do.
We’ve worked together to solve problems and discuss issues like if you were in a zombi apocalypse, which three people would you have – most of them would have a chef of some sort so that they could eat. and how to make the tallest spaghetti tower that will hold a marshmallow for 5 whole seconds.
We’ve talked about identity and finding your tribe and what is your superpower (something you are really good at) despite finding other things difficult, how do they see the world differently.
Understanding the values we need to have, such as Integrity, doing the right thing even when no-one is looking. Courage, to feel the fear and try anyway. Respect, to see things from another perspective and not judge others or make them feel bad if they don’t agree, has developed a good foundation for us to build a really strong group.
Lessons have also been really interesting with immersion giving them a little taster of what they will be diving in to with their case studies in the coming weeks.
Really exciting stuff. As this will be a new way of doing things to the children we have also talked about making mistakes being a really important part of the learning journey and if you don’t try how can you learn?
So in the wise words of Judy Hopps (Zootopia)

#Try, try everything!