Primary 3s Become Opera Buffs!

This young lady shows us what she thinks.

A few weeks back, our Primary 3s were given the opportunity to have an operatic experience, this was to be provided by Scottish Opera. We were invited to send the Primary 3s to an event at the Aberdeen University’s Hillhead Campus where they would find out all about opera. The pupils gave the thumbs up to this event.

The run up to this included the children being given information on what opera was all about.They even had to learn a song which was written in the operatic style and was set to a well known piece of classical / opera music. The words were very tricky to fit in but our bold threes did a grand job in learning the song before heading off to the opera.

They were amazed at what they found on their arrival. There was an orchestra as well as the opera singers. They were given information on how the opera is staged including the putting together of the wardrobe (that’s the costumes that the singers wear). There was lots to see and they could join in too.

I am rather fond of classical music and have visited the opera, myself, and I was disappointed that I had to remain in school and not be able to go with the children. I think it’s great that our young pupils are being given the chance to find out what opera is like at such a young age.

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The staff who accompanied the children were very impressed with the event and agreed that this was a great learning experience for the children whereby they might never have been to the opera before and they might never have thought of going. And the smiley faces on the children who attended tells a story in itself and they were very chatty about the whole experience when they returned to school. A big thank you to the ACC department which gave us the opportunity to attend and to Scottish Opera for a fantastic learning experience for our Primary 3s.


Article 29 -Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights, as well as respect for their parents, their own and other cultures, and the environment.

Riverbank & Rights Respecting Schools Support UNICEF’s Soccer Aid

I’m sure that you will all have been aware that Soccer Aid took place on Sunday 10 June. The UK Government has stated that every £1 that is raised for Soccer Aid will be matched by them. We weren’t able to join in the fundraising around the 10th, as the school timetable was pretty full. So, as a result, we are holding our events for Soccer Aid on Thursday 25 June.

There is no Day for Change this year as Soccer Aid is taking its place. Our pupils were asked how they would like to raise funds for UNICEF through Soccer Aid, and they decided that they would like a range of stalls in the hall. In addition, Rob from RADS is arranging a playground soccer challenge. All the classes will compete against each other and there will be an award for the winning class from P1-3 and another for the winning class from P4-7.

The children will be timetabled so that they all have a chance to participate in the playground challenge as well as to buy some raffle tickets, have their nails painted etc.

As requested by our pupils some of the stalls and prices will be as follows:

Children’s Raffle – 20p per ticket      Face Painting – 50p      Nail Painting – 50p      Tattoos – 10p, 20p & 50p                    Guess the Teddy’s Birthday – 20p      Badge Making – 50p      Colouring Competition – 20p                                              Bracelets – 50p      Cake & Candy – 10p, 20p & 50p

There may be other stalls and competitions available on the day.

We hope that the children will have great fun and that we will be successful in raising money for UNICEF which will help children in crisis around the world and remember, for every £1 we raise, the government will match it. Some information on Soccer Aid can be seen below.


Article 31 – Every child has the right to relax, play and take part in a wide range of cultural and artistic activities.

Article 13 – Every child must be free to say what they think and to seek and receive all kinds of information, as long as it is within the law.

Countdown to School

Riverbank’s annual transition programme for children coming in from nursery to primary 1, Countdown to School, got underway a few weeks back.

Countdown is six half hour sessions where the children who will be starting Primary 1 in August have a chance to meet some of the staff in school and participate, in class sized groups, in a range of activities which help prepare the children for life at Riverbank. The first session includes receiving a pack which they can use to practise writing or mark making. We have a play and share session in the courtyard, a PE session in the gym, a road safety session where we visit the zebra crossing and learn how to cross the road safely, a dining room snack session and we finish on week six with a tour round the parts of the school that they haven’t already seen.

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The children get to know some of the other pupils who will start Primary 1 with them and the sessions have seen children from nurseries, other than Riverbank Nursery, join us for the Countdown fun, too. It’s good to make some new friends and become familiar with some faces that the children will see around the school.

We’ve had lots of fun with this year’s Countdown group and we are all looking forward to seeing them all as Primary 1 pupils in August.

A Numeracy Open Day at Riverbank

We are always keen to share what’s going on at Riverbank with our parents and carers and Tuesday 29 May was a day for doing just that. We had two slots, one in the morning and another in the afternoon when parents and carers were invited in to Riverbank and during those times, they could visit classrooms and see some number or maths work going on.

Some of the activities were in the classroom, some in the hall and others were outside. Some of the activities saw maths being taught through football. This was a collaboration between class teachers and Rob from RADS. There were some outdoors maths activities as well as some lovely indoor activities.

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It was good to see so many adults joining in the classroom fun and finding out how their children learn about number and maths in school. We know how much our pupils love sharing their learning with parents and carers at home.


Article 28 – Every child has the right to an education.

Article 29 – Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full…..

Article 31 – Every child has the right to relax, play and take part in a wide range of cultural and artistic activities.

Speed Initiative, Again!

I’m writing this as I’m due to head out with Miss Hampton and some of Mrs Ng’s class, again, tomorrow morning, but thought you’d want to get up to speed…oops, pardon the pun, with our most recent trip out.

The group who were at work on Wednesday 30 May 2018.

We had better weather for this event on Wednesday 31 May but due to illness and other commitments, we only had two pupils to help us.

Interestingly, with temporary traffic lights in place, the traffic was much thinner and slower as it travelled along Hayton Road. Of course we were all pretty obvious in our high viz vests. There weren’t nearly so many drivers travelling over the 20mph limit which is in force when the lights are flashing. Perhaps, people are being more considerate and careful, as they know there have been a number of traffic surveys over the last few months. No driver likes to be stopped by the police.

Although he couldn’t stop the traffic, our pupil was shown how the ‘speed gun’ worked.

We all hope that our surveys will help reduce the speed of traffic and make Tillydrone a safer place for pedestrians and our school pupils, in particular.

The children will be given an opportunity to discuss with their peers, the police and council officers the results of their survey. Some interesting information came from the surveys and we may be able to share this with you when the children have met and discussed their findings.



Article 12 – Every child has the right to have a say in all matters affecting them, and to have their views taken seriously.

Tabletop Gardens!

Primary 2-3, Mrs Barber’s class, participated in a homework activity which required them to design and produce a tabletop garden. I was asked to go down to the class and view and judge the gardens. Oh, my goodness, what a tough task that was! Everyone had tackled the task in their own way and although there were two main winners, Mrs Barber had a prize for everyone. The gardens were amazing and i loved seeing the great ideas the pupils had had. I have placed the photos, which I took when judging, on a slideshow so that you can enjoy them too.

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A montage of tabletop gardens. Well done to everyone who participated.


Article 29 – Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full.It must encourage the child’s respect for…..and the environment.

Information for New Primary 1 Parents

Last Thursday, 7th June, we held two induction meetings for parents with children starting in Primary 1, at Riverbank, after the summer holidays. During these two sessions we showed a PowerPoint which had useful information and dates to remember included in it. I have been asked to display the information on the website. Unfortunately, the file is too large to place on the website so I have cherry-picked the most important information and listed it below.

3 Primary 1 classes: P1C – Miss Coyle – Room 5     P1L – Mrs Lade – Room 6      P1 – Mrs Arqued – Room 7


First Day 9.30-12.00.     Meet at Reception.     Weeks 1 & 2  9.00-12.00.     Week 3 – Onwards 9.00am-3.15pm Soft Finish Pick Up from 3.00pm – 3.15pm.

Things to have in your schoolbag: Indoor Shoes     Change of clothes     Snack     Pencil case      Gym kit   Homework     Reading book

An opportunity to eat lunch in the dining room with your child and for your child to familiarise themselves with the dining room procedures.

P1C – Wednesday 29 August – 11.45am

P1L – Thursday 30 August – 11.45am

P1A – Friday 31 August – 11.45am

Pupils are free.    Cost for adults is £2.50 

 Playtime 10.30am-10.45am: Healthy Snack    No fizzy juice    PSAs outside to supervise   

Lunchtime 12.00 noon-1.00pm    H U B – For First Aid and Time Out.

After August

Parent and child school lunch – 29th, 30th & 31st August

Parent literacy/numeracy information sessions

Tuesday 4th September 9.30am – 10.30am

I hope I’ve included all the relevant information but if you require further information don’t hesitate to contact the school on 01224 483217.


Hayton House Victorious at Riverbank Sports Day

After a very busy Sports Day, the new holders of the Riverbank Sports Cup is Hayton House. The blues are the winners for 2018!

The Hayton House Captains having received the Sports Cup from Mrs McGregor.

It wasn’t the best of weather today but it was dry and Sports Day went ahead. Thanks to all the parents and carers who came to support the pupils as they worked their way round a good variety of different sports activities. A special thank you must go to Mrs McGregor who organised all the events and the timetable for the classes. In addition a thank you to the Sports Ambassadors from St Machar Academy who came to lend their support as well as all our other helping volunteers, staff and not forgetting the pupils who participated so well.

Mrs McGregor was working madly on her calculator so that we could have the winners presented with the cup at a quick assembly in the hall at the end of proceedings. It was a quick ribbon change on the cup as Seaton House, the winners over the last two years, relinquished their hold on the cup and it was handed over, by Mrs McGregor, to the House Captains of Hayton House who will hold the cup for a year.

Well done to everyone for a great and exciting Sports Day.




Article 15 – Every child has the right to meet with other children and
to join groups and organisations, as long as this does not
stop other people from enjoying their rights.- 

Article 29 – Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights, as well as respect for their parents, their
own and other cultures, and the environment.

Article 31 – Every child has the right to relax, play and take part in a wide range of cultural and artistic activities.

Prismatic Winds Perform at Riverbank

I’m playing at catch up, again, with this article.Sorry for the delay folks.

Members of the audience became involved.

On the 24th April, Riverbank was extremely fortunate to be visited by an extremely talented group of musicians called Prismatic Winds. They were a wind ensemble who were in school to entertain but they were also there to explain that only a few people were learning to play certain instruments. Our visitors didn’t want these instruments to become ‘extinct’. By that, they meant that they wanted to encourage people to take up playing these instruments.

We were given the opportunity to have these talented musicians visit us by Live Music Now Scotland. The quintet of musicians were Graham Dickson – flute, Irena Klimach – oboe, Matthew Jansen Giraldo – clarinet, Robert Newth – French horn and Donagh Marnane – bassoon.

The children had a chance to see these musical instruments ‘in the flesh’ and see how they were played. Only a few of the pupils could name the instruments and that was an education in itself. The ensemble surprised us all y not sticking to the expected classical pieces although they did start their performance with The Flight of the Bumblebee. They interspersed with The Teddy Bears’ Picnic, the themes from Star Wars, Jurassic Park and everyone’s favourite the theme from The Simpsons. The children loved guessing what these popular pieces were. The musicians explained a little about their instruments and there was some audience participation which had some pupils trying to make a tune from a split straw. Irena explained that the split straw mimicked the reed in her instrument, the oboe.

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The children were astounded by how much volume could be created by just five instruments which, unlike the ‘bands’ of today, don’t require electrical amplifiers to create a loud noise. Have a listen for yourself. Prismatic Winds

This was an exceptional opportunity for our pupils and we hope to welcome some other classical musicians to Riverbank in the future. We would like to thank Live Music Now Scotland, for arranging this visit, and especially, Prismatic Winds for entertaining us in such an educational but highly enjoyable manner.


Article 29 – Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights, as well as respect for their parents, their
own and other cultures, and the environment.

Article 31 – Every child has the right to relax, play and take part in a wide range of cultural and artistic activities.