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Here is Ladybird Class’s Rangoli pattern to celebrate Diwali, we created it outside the classroom door 🎉


Potter Class sketching a Roman Theatre.


Potter class learning lots about the Romans by looking at artefacts from the Roman times.


Look at Lauren and Sophie's Stop Start Animation from our Creative Friday session - impressive work!


We love Creative Friday! The children have been using the iMotion app today to create short animations. We were inspired by Morph (for those of you old enough to remember!)


What a relaxing afternoon year 5 have had creating their own Mandala patterns. Some stunning outcomes!


Austen class are enjoying their science lesson on testing the elasticity of skin as it ages.


Year 6 spent some quality time with their Reception buddies this morning. They worked together to make some scrumptious bread dough. The Reception class really enjoyed showing Year 6 how to get the consistency just right !!!


Congratulations we are proud to announce that we are the UK Go Challenge Primary School champions! We are very proud of our primary competitors - what an amazing achievement.


An inspirational assembly from one of our brave year 5 children celebrating National organ donation day after a liver transplant saved her life.


We have been using lots of growth mindset phrases this afternoon whilst making foxes and ducks. It sent us “quackers”


The children are thoroughly enjoying our new 'snug kit' in the playground. The result is collaborative play and some amazing creations


Year 6 girls football first win of the year. Well done girls!


Potter Class learning about independence with food


Potter class using chalk and flour to practice their spellings.


Creative Friday Computing Group got to grips with Pic-collage today. We created a collage of photos to represent HA. We edited our photos and produced some lovely work!


My goodness me we are exercising our growth mindness today!!


Shakespeare class are learning how to play the Ukulele!!!


Our Science was literally jumping with excitement in Austen class today as we created new habitats for our crickets! We looked at the independent and dependent variables and will observe them regularly over a long period of time.


Ladybird Class have been inspired by Toy Story 4 and have linked our learning by practicing writing our names on our very own ‘Forky’


Retweeted From HarpendenAcademy

Y4 have been conducting an exciting experiment looking at the growth of microbes. We are investigating which is the dirtiest place in the classroom! We swiped 4 places with a cotton bud&then rolled them on the petri dish. Next week we will classify the growth of our bacteria!


Creative Friday is going down a treat! So many smiles and excitement around the school. In the Computing/Photography group we have been green screening. If you could be anywhere, where would you be?


All of the entrants...


The Winner of the Harpenden Academy Bake Off...


A late entrant may have blown the competion out of the water!


Staff Bake Off competition in has all got rather serious!


Cakes a go go at HA


Macmillian coffee morning is on!!


Its the Harpenden Academy Bake Off for MacMillian Coffee Morning...judging in assembly this morning !


Year 5 had great fun making a wormery today. Some great initial observations made!


Our classes are having a brilliant time at our big dance workshop today run by We are putting something quite special together - watch this space!


Year 4 Austen have been busy scientists extracting DNA from strawberries today. They have also been researching key facts. Did you know that we share over 50% of our DNA with a banana?!


Just heard from Mrs Davies, the Year 5 coach is 10min away


Coach fixed and back on the road. Estimated to arrive in an hour at 1.20pm


Year 5 Coach delayed due to breakdown. Luckily broken down by M&S Wild Bean Cafe at service station. Coach assistance on the way and will keep you posted on progress. All safe and off to get the children lunch.


Year 5 Fellowship Afloat have just left so ETA is between 12.00-12.30. Will keep you updated on more specific arrival time


What a fantastic week it has been. It’s been an absolute pleasure to spend it with such a bright, bubbly, kind and engaged bunch of children. Very proud teacher returning to Harpenden Academy for a wonderful year ahead !


On our way home!


Preparing to go home...we are now far more independent than we were on Monday!


Our last sunrise at FA. We have bleary eyed children and adults this morning . A fabulous week.Lots of stories to tell about bravery on the high ropes, balloon popping in archery and adventures on the seas. Thank you for letting us make memories with your children.

Live Learning

Live Learning at Harpenden Academy

At Harpenden Academy we operate Live Learning Sessions termly. Live learning sessions are specific periods during the school day where parents are invited to come in the class and learn with the children in the classroom. The Live Learning can be on any curriculum area not just the core subjects of English, Maths and Science. This is an opportunity for parents to see how the children learn so that they can use this information to further support their child’s learning at home. Each class puts the date of the Live Learning in their weekly newsletter and parents need to sign up to attend. This is not a chance for parents to observe but is more an opportunity for parents to learn with the children and be part of the lesson.

Parents are then asked to give the school feedback which is circulated in whole school newsletters and on the website.


Live Learning Feedback

Thank you to all of you who turn up to our Live Learning sessions each term - the attendance was amazing. Your feedback, which is attached helps us to keep improving our school but also demonstrates how much you enjoy and value the sessions. Watch out for dates for the Live Learning sessions in your child's Class Newsletter.

Live Learning Sessions Spring 2019 Parental feedback

Most useful thing about the session?
How will home learning be impacted?
Future Subjects?
3 word summary
Reception LADYBIRD (number attending 6)



Understanding what levels my child is at
Seeing various techniques
Seeing how the learning is presented
Starting number sentences with the largest number first.
The wording used in class
The style of presentation and the class dynamics
Being involved in their learning
Being systematic
Different approach
Help in making learning fun
Knowing what a number sentence is
Use the words used in classs by the teacher eg Number sentence
Terminology of Maths
Science experiments
Fun, interesting,helpful
Valuable, precious,targeted,informative engaging
Year 2 ASLAN (number attending 12)
Seeing what happens in the classroom
Watching the children interact
Love to see the children learning by “doing”
Watching the children learn and interact
Watching the children
I will get told off for drinking coke by my child now!
We will do more experiments at home
I will follow some of the processes at home
We will do experiments at home
I will try to talk more about predictions and hypothesis etc
Interesting,fun, hands-on,practical,real-life engaging,enthusiastic,interactive, exciting, chaotic!
Year 3 KIPLING (number attending 6)
It makes the kids active
Seeing the new equipment in action
Finding out how a PE lesson is conducted
Seeing the new apparatus and the children being active
Seeing the children having fun at school
Activity- getting out of the classroom
Great emphasis on safety.
Working as a team/ team work
Help them with climbing and balance
Safety when climbing outside eg how high do you feel safe?
Reinforces that lots of active pursuits are a great idea
Encouraging team work
Do more climbing with the children
Fun, educating,healthy
Energetic, fun, interesting,
Lively, active,, constructive fun, energetic, enjoyable, stretching, exhilarating, heart pumping,detailed, exciting.
Year 3 POTTER (3 attending)
I liked the fact the children can work at their own ability
Nice calm atmosphere with the children enjoying their learning
Very interactive  The children are asked to express different views about questions.
Working on neatness and explanation
Working within a time frame
Helping the children to concentrate on their work
Year 4 AUSTEN (7 attending)
Variety of teaching methods to learn times tables
The number line
Making learning times tables fun
Different ways to learn the times tables
Ways to reinforce times tables
Looking at alternative ways to learn the tables
Fun, creative ideas to use and practise
Different methods of learning not just the traditional approach
Finding and using games to aid learning
Find engaging ways 
Informative, fun,
Valuable, interesting,
Varied, informative,insightful,engaging,
Year 5 DAHL (10 attending)
Explanation of time zone is relevant as we have family that lives in Australia
Being part of the learning and meeting the class
Seeing the children being engaged and curious
Seeing how well the children were learning and behaving in the class
Lovely to see the children being able to work independently, confidently and remaining focussed.
Seeing how science is taught
We will look at time zones with the children
We will talk about the time zones across the world
More discussion about different time zones and maybe take a trip to Greenwich.


Independent, hands on learning, fun, informative,interesting, engaging exciting, exploring
Year 6 SHAKESPEARE (7 attending)
Problem solving using Bar Modelling
Very helpful to understand how to use the bar modelling method
Thought that the group work/ puzzles was a great idea to keep the children engaged
Creating Learning activities outside and inside the classroom was a wonderful idea.
Making links between the different subjects was very clear and good
Teaching approach was kind and positive- every child felt heard and valued
Understanding the bar method will help with home learning
The bar method was new to me- I will now know what my child is talking about at home.
Now I know what this is I will be able to help more at home
That maths isn't as hard as we think and that the bar method is a very good way to visualise the question.
Interesting,fun, hands-on,practical,real-life engaging,enthusiastic,interactive, exciting, an eye opener!


Live Learning Sessions Autumn 2018 Parental feedback

Most useful thing about the session?
How will home learning be impacted?
Future Subjects?
3 word summary
Year 1 ELMER (number attending 7)
(Phonics and Talk 4 Writing)
Understanding how phonics works and how it is taught
Seeing learning taken place outside the classroom
Seeing how phonics is taught in class makes you realise how challenging the english language is
How phonics is taught in different ways
We can look for sounds in everyday objects
I will focus less on the reading being right and focus more on sounds and making phonics fun
Good to see how phonics sounds are being taught to have consistency
I will focus more on the sounds of the spellings pointing out these sounds when I see them in everyday life
Number bonds
Fun, lively, engaging, great, exciting,
energising, interesting, informative,entertaining and creative
Year 5 DAHL (number attending 3)
I learnt about syllables as in my own language we use it differently
Key poets
Respecting the past and passing this down to the children (Cultural capital)
How to break down lines in poetry
Understanding syllables
Being able to talk things through rather than writing all the time is ok
Better understanding of structuring and breaking down the work
Thinking about the wider context of the children's learning
Inspiring, emotional, informative, respectful,thoughtful,inspirational (I loved it), thought provoking, emotional, inclusive
Year 3 KIPLING (number attending 6)
Seeing how engaged the children are in their learning
Seeing how well the children work together
It is great to see how engaged the children are while learning
The active parts of the lesson eg getting up, sorting, active thinking and moving
Good to see how a lesson is run plus how new subjects are introduced
Seeing how engaged the children are in their learning

Seeing how well the children work together

It is great to see how engaged the children are while learning

The ACTIVE parts of the lesson eg getting up, sorting, active thinking and moving

Good to see how a lesson is run plus how new subjects are introduced
Creative writing
Helpful,enlightening,interesting,useful,engaging active,interesting, fun,entertaining,informative, engaging
Year 3 POTTER (2 attending)
The good class discipline
Use of new words and vocabulary for the children
Encourage the children to speak clearly and project their voices
Different ways of thinking
Think, creative, imaginative, inclusive, relaxed enjoyable.
Year 6 SHAKESPEARE (5 attending)
Seeing the range of resources and methods used to help with the learning
How to teach a concept in a variety of ways
How well the children work together to solve problems
Making concepts very visual and hands on
Using the resources to break down a tricky topic
Interactive learning
I can apply the same examples to objects at home

To use props/ objects and a variety of materials and different ways to help them

It has helped to clarify how to approach home learning

It has brought more clarity as to what to do at home

Encourage the use of a range of resources.
Maths more Science
Year 4 AUSTEN (6 attending)

Thank you for having us. It was lovely taking part in the lesson.

Great to see how to bring grammar to life, especially linking it to topical issues. Thank you

Learning grammar vocabulary the children are learning and seeing lessons in progress

To understand the complexity of English and writing

Really interesting to see a lesson in progress. I learnt a lot!

Really interesting to see how challenged the children are and how tricky concepts are taught practically and engagingly

Amazing to see how the class has your attention.


In depth information on how to go about it

I will now clap to get her attention.

Clearer knowledge re what and how taught

Helpful to understand how to develop the thought process/ learning and so better able to support that

A better understanding of teaching methods and content

Much more engagement with the task…instead of telling her off and leaving her to it!





Wow…quite engaging! Loved it!

Amazing, interesting, wow, varied, challenging, rewarding,

Interesting, educational, fun, engaging,thought-provoking, challenging.

“ Wow! A real insight into Year 4. Much harder than I thought. Really useful.”

Year 4 is hard!!! (much more indepth than I realised)

Year 2 ASLAN (8 attending)

Really useful to understand techniques so we can replicate it at home

Importance of support at home

All of it has been useful

Engaged children

Children listening

Variety of tasks and use of games

How to support at home

Seeing the level of challenge for the children

Engaged happy children

More practice at home

Will replicate the techniques used

Will continue to use methods at home to help learning in class

Understanding levels and techniques

Understanding approach and methods/ structure used

Very useful to see what maths methods are being used

So useful to replicate techniques at home so child’s  learning is consistent between home and school

Creative writing


Fun, engaging,thorough,fast-moving, varied, differentiated, very interesting, enlightening,good fun
Variety of challenge, fun, helpful, intersting, challenging, insightful, interactive, fast paced


Live Learning Sessions Summer 2018 Parental feedback


Most useful thing about the session?

How will home learning be impacted?

Future Subjects?

3 word summary

Year 1 (number attending 3)



(Phonics and Talk 4 Writing)

Seeing the variety of different teaching methods that were used and how effective they were in keeping the class engaged and learning.

Seeing how phonics is taught and learning techniques to use at home.

Getting a much clearer understanding of what the children do.

Explaining to my child in more detail around the words and the English language

How I need to talk to my child about sounds and letter formation

More likely to do spellings now

Find fun ways of learning to spell words

A better understanding of how to talk about sounds and spellings



Engaging, effective, interesting,

enlightening, useful, purposeful, fun, multi-layered learning.

Year 2 BFG (number attending 9)


(Creative writing, grammar and sentence openers)

Seeing the children in a classroom environment

Seeing the creativity of the children and how well they engage with the subject. It was interesting to see different examples of handwriting

Seeing the high level of vocab the children are used to

Seeing the broad range of abilities

Watching an actual class makes me understand more about what they do during the day. Thank you

Interesting to see what actually happens at school. Lovely to see the children behaving nicely and great teaching. It was very engaging

To get a better idea of how the children spend their day

Lovely to see the dynamic in the classroom and the language used in the children’s learning

Seeing the great interaction between teacher and the children knowing what creative writing devices children should know

Better understanding of the detail needs in written work

Engage my child with creative writing at home in a fun way

I know about more about grammar now

To give my child a lot more time to craft her words out loud to see how they sound

Use more creative words in our writing

Use technical vocabulary more frequently

It gives me an idea of what standard is expected in work

Will think about how we will start stories with a “big bang”

Will think about how to use more creative language in storytelling


Creative writing

Problem solving activities

Science experiments


Practical subjects like food technology

How children were taught to problem solve and use their arithmetic skills

Engaging, interesting, useful, interactive, motivating, fast paced educational, encouraging, exciting, cheerful, disciplined, creative, challenging, varied, energetic, enthusiastic, dynamic, informative, enlightening, fun.

Year 4 (number attending 4)


(Converting fractions to decimal)

Working together

Seeing the structure of a “Math –No problem!” lesson

Seeing how maths is taught

Seeing how maths is taught which will make home learning easier

I will do more of it

I now know more about what happens in the classroom so I can mirror it

Utilise techniques at home rather than my old way of doing things

Using the same terminology at home





Informative, interesting, fun, great insight

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