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St. Francis de Sales Catholic Junior School

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SFDS Debate Competition


Today, the whole school took part in a debating competition which was judged by our SFDS debate club members and a professional debating champion judge! It was wonderful to see the high quality debating and oracy skills that were showcased by all pupils during this fantastic morning.

SFDS Poetry Slam 


This week, the whole school took part in an amazing poetry slam. Two pupils from each class performed their We Are Writer's poem in front of the entire school! We also had special guest appearances by professional poets. What a fantastic morning! 

'We are Writers!' 2023

In celebration of World Book Day, every child in St Francis de Sales becomes a published author in our annual We are Writers book. This year, the children were set the task to create their own poem. Year 3 children created a variety of different poems and all enjoyed reading each others and their own. 


Here is a child from Year 3 performing their own poem from this year's 'We are Writers!' book.

'The Mirror' by Jeannie Baker

Year 3 have been exploring the wordless picture book, 'Mirror'. The book compares the lives of 2 boys from different parts of the world; Australia and Morocco. After analysing the story, we hot-seated one another as if they were the Moroccan boy! It was important that we focused on our oracy skills of using different tones of voice for expression and avoiding gap fillers such as 'erm' and 'like'!


Through our study of the Ancient Egyptians this term, we have explored a number of fascinating artefacts and discovered their significance within Ancient Egyptian society. Using this knowledge, we carried out a debate about where artefacts belong. The motion was: 'Artefacts should be returned to their country of origin'. 


As part of the proposition or opposition team, we communicated our arguments, making sure we listened out for key points carefully, as this is one of our oracy targets. It was also important that we planned our arguments in our heads before speaking so that we could communicate clearly and effectively.


"Artefacts should stay in the country in which they were discovered because they belong there. For example, Egypt would really benefit from exhibiting the Rosetta Stone in the Cairo Museum as it would provide more money for Egyptians."

Jackson Keating

Performance Poetry

Year 3 performed the poem 'The Moon' by Robert Louis Stevenson. After identifying the key features of the poem, we considered how we could use key oracy skills to perform it. We listened carefully to each performance and offered peer feedback on each skill. In this video, you can see how the group demonstrate a smoothness in their voice whilst also projecting their voice to emphasise key aspects of the poem. In addition, they maintain eye contact with the listener and used hand gestures to communicate the key themes in the poem. By stepping forward at the beginning of each stanza, they mimicked the organisation of the poem.




Performance Poetry