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St John the Baptist Roman Catholic Primary School Love One Another


School GIFT Team

Way back in October, we launched 'Operation Christmas Child,' during one of our Monday morning assemblies. Today, on 26th November 2021, we were overwhelmed with the response that we had to this project. During our lunchtime meeting, we counted a staggering 67 boxes!!!! There were a lot of 'wow's' as we counted them. We would like to say a MASSIVE 'thank you' to everyone who got involved. Your shoebox may be the only gift that a child might ever receive.

On Thursday 25th November 2021, the GIFT Team decided to go and litter pick in the school playground. The equipment was kindly donated by Mrs Collins, who nominated the school, via the Canal & River Trust, to take part in the 'School Plastics Challenge.' The first 50 schools that requested the litter picking equipment would be chosen to receive the goods, and we were successful! The GIFT Team were shocked to find that the majority of the rubbish in our playground, was plastic straw wrappers, from the milk cartons at snack time. The GIFT Team are going to follow up from this with an assembly, for the whole school, and make posters to promote the importance of putting rubbish into a bin.

Here is our wonderful school GIFT team in their brand new jumpers. They look very smart indeed as they continue to fulfil their important role in promoting our school ethos to our school family and the wider community.

On Friday 15th October, our wonderful GIFT Team led a beautiful liturgy for our infants all about God’s creation and how we can look after our world and each other. They read the creation story to the children, said some prayers and finished the liturgy with a lovely hymn ‘If I were a butterfly’ which all the children and teachers enjoyed singing and dancing to! After the liturgy, our GIFT Team made the children a creation colouring worksheet for the children to complete to help them reflect on God’s wonderful world and how we can all respect it. They had great fun getting to know the children and sharing their knowledge of the creation story and how we can follow in God’s footsteps.

THE GIFT TEAM NEED YOUR HELP! In your sheds or garages, do you have any spare wood stain or paint that could be donated into school? We noticed that Hayley Barker’s memorable bench is in need of some tender loving care. Having spoken to Mrs Barker (our head of catering) about this, she was overwhelmed and very grateful for our support. Thank you in advance.

Congratulations to our new GIFT Team members of 2020-2021, Holly, Sophie, Ruby, Amelia, Max, Rowan, Oscar and Alexander. We were so impressed with their letters of application and look forward to working with this academic year.

***UPDATE FROM THE GINGERBREAD SOCKS FUND RAISER*** I received a message from Milo's mum to say that the total amount raised was £180, £95 from school and £85 from Facebook 'Go Fund' post. The family would like to say thank you to everyone who supported them on World Down Syndrome Day, and that Milo loved selling the biscuits and was so proud taking the money back to the charity.

Milo from Year 2, along with his family, approached school and asked if we could support 'World Down Syndrome Day'. This charity means a lot to Milo and his family as Milo's baby brother, Louie was diagnosed with Down Syndrome when he was 1 week old, and then had to have open heart surgery at 4 months old for a defect called 'Tetralogy of Fallot.' Louie will need this surgery again, when he is older, in his teens. So, on Friday 20th March 2020, we sold 'gingerbread socks' for 50p each. You might be wondering, why socks? That's because chromosomes are shaped like socks and people with Down Syndrome have and extra one. Thank you to everyone who supported the charity.

Following on from our Mother's Day competition, we followed the theme and decided to make a quiz. With the help of Mrs Bracken, she made the quiz for us and we called it 'Wonderful Women Quiz'. We sold it to our families, staff and our Parish community for £1. Mrs Bracken marked the quiz and chose 3 winners. She then asked Mrs Taylor to choose a number, 1, 2 or 3. Mrs Taylor couldn't decide, so she asked her son, Lewis to choose and he said number 2. Well, Mrs Bracken couldn't believe it - "O heck, that's my cousin in Oz!!!" The other 2 winners were Mrs Gillian Turner and Mrs Bracken's son, David! Mrs Bracken said "I promise they had no help from me." Isabella from Year 5 was so close, with having got one of the questions wrong. The prize was £10 and Mrs Bracken's cousin, Sue Avery, kindly donated the money back, so Mrs Bracken bought 2 Easter eggs for the runners up. Thank you to all who bought our family quiz. All money raised will go towards helping the GIFT Team with their ongoing charity work.

During the month of March, we held a Mother's Day Competition and on Friday 20th March we announced the winners. We gave the difficult job of judging to our special friend, Mrs Bracken, who visits us regularly from our Parish. In the words of Mrs Bracken "O my goodness, it was tricky - they were all brilliant and all deserved a prize! I chose three, then I asked my granddaughter to choose 3 - and she said the exact same ones as me! A big WELL DONE to all the entrants. Love from Mrs Bracken xx" The winners received a present and a card to give to their mothers on Mothering Sunday. Well done and thank you to all who took part in the competition.

On Wednesday 12th February, the GIFT Team had a lovely visit from Father Peter who came to celebrate our GIFT Team's hard work and efforts. We all had a wonderful day showing Father around school, our class worship areas, our journals, our displays, our Chapel, our website and sharing our ideas and experiences of being part of the GIFT Team.

Following on from our appeal in December donations of food to help the homeless in our community, we were so overwhelmed by the generosity and kindness of our families. We received a lovely 'thank you' card from the volunteers of the 'Tuesday Food Group' and we'd like to share it with you. 'To Mrs Taylor and pupils, staff and parents, Thank you so much for organising such a splendid appeal and collecting so many foodstuffs for our homeless/vulnerable projects. All the donations have been gratefully received, some we will use to prepare and cook food at our weekly sessions, whilst some will be given out to our most vulnerable/needy people on a weekly basis, as need suggests. It is very much appreciated that we have this reserve to draw on. Thanks also to al the children who helped me load everything into my car, and best wishes for the G.I.F.T initiative.' Marilyn & Fred Pate X

We had a lovely Christmas mass in Church celebrating Advent. Thank you Father Allan and our parishioners who came back to school for refreshments.

We recorded lots of Christmas carols, jokes and stories for Talking Newspapers, helping to bring a little joy at Christmas for the blind. Thank you to Mrs Glynn for helping us to do this.

The GIFT Team's Christmas Craft Club has been very busy. We enjoyed helping our Nursery friends with their craft activities.

So far, November and December have been busy months for the GIFT Team.

In November, we met with Mrs Bracken, (one of our Parish friends) to talk about and prepare for the 'Secret Santa' stall and 'Guess the name of the Elf'

Some of our GIFT Team members volunteered their services and helped with the Parish Fair.  

A big thank you to all who helped.

Our GIFT Team delivering Rosary Club in the Chapel for their friends.

Our GIFT Team had a wonderful day hosting the 'GIFT Team Celebration Day' for 15 schools at St John's. They took part in a variety of workshops based on the 'Beatitudes' and created a lovely presentation about all of their hardwork throughout the year. In the afternoon, they were commissioned by Bishop John Arnold.

Our new GIFT Team organised a Macmillan cake and coffee morning for our families and friends in the wider community. £131.70 was raised! Thank you to everyone for your kind donations.

Our lovely display in the Chapel.

Well done to our new GIFT Team children who have been chosen to represent our school from 2019-2020. We are very much looking forward to working with you.

We were very proud of our hardwork, generous efforts and how we worked as a super team throughout the year. Now, we pass on the torch to our next GIFT Team.

As a treat for being an amazing GIFT Team at the end of the year, we visitied the local park for the afternoon, to play and enjoy a delicious ice cream.



Following on from Mrs McKeating's visit to Kenya, she has kindly brought back items that have been made by the MAMA Margaret's in Dagoretti.

They have been made into 'Trees of Kindness' and will be distributed to every class in school, in September 2019.


Any child who is found to be showing true acts of kindness will be able to choose a keyring from the tree, to keep.


Will you be caught being kind?

On Tuesday 25th June 2019, Miss Dewhurst, Mrs Taylor and 3 of our GIFT Team members, Chelsea, Megan and Maddison attended a ‘Growing in Faith Together Celebration Day’ at St Mary’s Priory in Bamber Bridge. In the morning, all the Salford Diocese schools processed down the aisle with their banner that they were asked to design to celebrate their school’s achievements, fundraisers and wider community connections. This banner was then presented to Bishop John Arnold at the altar. After participating in a few upbeat hymns, our GIFT team also took part in a variety of workshops that promoted ideas and links with the Parish family that could be fulfilled in school. In the afternoon, a mass was held to reflect and give thanks for all the hard work and efforts made from the schools and parish. A great day was had by all.



On Friday 24th May 2019, we attended the Mass with the rest of the school and our parish community.

During the Mass, we offered up our spiritual bouquet that we had made especially for this day.

Afterwards, the spiritual bouquet was placed in the Our Lady Chapel, in church, alongside the flowers that had been brought in from all the children in school.

Many thanks to our school and parish community for sending in postage stamps from our appeal way back in January for the UK Air Ambulance Service. We have literally had THOUSANDS of them! We will be collecting them right through until the end of June. Thanking you for your continued support. We really do appreciate it.

Thank you to our lovely Year 1's, Year 2's and School GIFT Team for taking part in the sponsored 'Pendleside Hospice's Bunny Hop!' It was enjoyed by all and the children loved their certificates, bunny ears and creme eggs for completing this event. Thank you to Pendleside Hospice for all the wonderful work that they do.

Decorating cakes to sell and raise money for Pendleside Hospice.



The UK's Air Ambulance Services are charities which receive no government funding and rely entirely on charitable donations to continue flying and responding to life threatening medical emergencies.


The GIFT Team are now volunteering their time to help raise funds through the recycling of postage stamps.


Your stamps will be gratefully received throughout 2019.  Please ask your family and friends, or anyone who you think might be able to help us.  Just send them into school for the attention of the GIFT Team and we'll do the rest!

Thank you for your support.


Our GIFT Team enjoyed running our 'Christmas Workshop' where children of all ages could decorate their own bauble and make reindeer food. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this event.



During the month of December, the GIFT Team organised a Christmas Craft Club to raise funds for local charities.

There was reindeer food making, ready for Christmas Eve (wildlife friendly which only included oats and bird seed, as all glitter types are harmful) decorate a bauble and create your own Christmas tree decoration.

The GIFT Team were overwhelmed by the response to their club, and they had so much fun, getting involved with the youngest to the oldest members of the school.  There was glitter and oats galore!


With your help, the total amount raised was...drum roll!!! 



Some of the money has already been given to Hayley's Hugs, with the rest going to a local initiative that is due to start in the New Year, in Padiham.


We would like to say a MASSIVE thank you to everybody who was involved in helping us, to help others.







Last Friday 7th December 2018, the GIFT Team presented Mrs Barker, our Unit Catering Supervisor, with £200.00 for the charity Hayley's Hugs which she founded in honour of her daughter, Hayley in 2014. Every Christmas Eve, the Hayley's Hugs team visit Ward 84 at The Royal Manchester Children's Hospital where Hayley was treated, and give out presents that they buy with money that they raise, to the children and teenagers who, unfortunately, have to spend Christmas in hospital. The GIFT Team could not have made this generous donation if it wasn't for the great response to the Christmas Craft Club that they organised, and for this reason, we would like to say a MASSIVE thank you for your kindness in helping us to help others. You really have helped to make a difference, and for that reason, we are incredibly grateful for all the support you have given us this year. The GIFT Team

On Thursday 29th November 2018, the GIFT Team, with the help of Mrs Glynn, Mrs Catley and Mr Kelly recorded some Christmas songs, told jokes and recited the poem 'Twas the night before Christmas', for the Burnley Talking Newspaper. This is delivered weekly to people who are blind in our local area. The GIFT Team wanted to bring some Christmas cheer to people who cannot access newspapers, magazines or any kind of written text. They really enjoyed giving something back to others. If you know anybody who you think could use this service, please feel free to contact the school.

Our GIFT Team made a wonderful vlog for a special Mass alongside other school GIFT Teams celebrating journeys at Blessed Trinity!

Still image for this video

Our School GIFT are enjoying updating their journals from their experiences and involvement with the Religious Life of our School.

FINALLY, our new GIFT Team jumpers have arrived! Here is a picture of our wonderful GIFT Team looking very proud and smart.

Our school family have been very generous over the last few months in donating shoes for the children in Gambia. Our School GIFT Team paired up and organised these shoes, which were collected on Monday 15th October 2018 by the Charity FEW (Furniture for Education) ready to deliver to the children.

On Friday 28th September 2018, our lovely GIFT Team had fun decorating cakes to sell at our whole school Macmillan Coffee and Cake morning.

Here is our wonderful GIFT Team display.

On Friday 21st September 2018, our GIFT Team and School Councillors did a great job preparing and involving themselves in our first whole school mass for New Beginnings. Thank you to our families and parishioners who joined them back at school for tea and biscuits.

A huge congratulations to our new GIFT Team members. We are very grateful for your applications and can't wait to work with you.

A huge thank you to our Year 5 and 6 Chaplains for all of their hard work and efforts this year. We wish our Year 6 Chaplains the best of luck for the future.They had great fun in the Secret Garden to celebrate!

On Tuesday 26th June 2018, our school Chaplains visited St Mary's Priory in Bamber Bridge to celebrate how we are a 'Beacon of Hope' to eachother and to those in our local area. In the morning, we met in St Mary's Church with many other North West schools to learn how we could develop our Parish communities using the '7 Steps from School to Parish', followed by taking part in a Liturgy in the afternoon where the Chaplains learnt how they could promote hope in the future. At the end of the Liturgy, the Chaplains were honoured to receive a San Damiano Cross that will be proudly displayed in our School Chapel.

Our School Chaplains ventured to Spring Cottage Home Care to deliver some of the beautiful flowers that had been donated by our very generous pupils at St John's for our Crowning of Mary mass. We hope they brought joy to the residents.

Our School Chaplains created a beautiful spiritual bouquet to help celebrate our special Crowning of Mary mass. The bouquet was left with Mary in our St John the Baptist Parish.

Our Chaplains have been busy raising money for Mission Possible by making and selling their very own edible slime! They had great fun melting marshmellows and kneading and stretching the mixture to create the delicious, yet unusual gloop! The Chaplains managed to raise £109.40! We thank all of our school children and their families for their kindness and support.

Our School Chaplains from Year 5 and 6 2017-2018

These are our School Chaplains in their new Chaplaincy Jumpers. They chose the new colour themselves and wear these jumpers with pride.

Our Year 6 School Chaplains and School Counciillors from Year 1 and Year 2 visited Woodside Home in Padiham.  Mrs Carlile spoke to the staff on the phone and organised a visit for some of our children to go and meet some of the residents there.  Miss McBreen and Mrs Taylor went to Woodside with the children. 


They all had a fantastic time and everyone enjoyed doing some colouring and our Year 6 children entertained the residents with their dancing.  They have been learning about WW2 and have been learning the Lindy Hop.  The residents loved this! 


We also gave some of the staff and residents some of our Jet Set Angels for them to keep.  All our children were polite and were a credit to the school.  We can't wait to go and visit again soon.

Our Chaplains spent a day at Fisher More RC Humanities College, Colne with all the other Chaplains from Burnley and Pendle. They had a fun-filled day and had the chance to enjoy lots of different activities.

Our school chaplains give up their play times to sell poppies.

Our School Chaplains are busy making up the boxes for 'Operation Christmas Child' for each of our families to fill for other children who don't have as much as us.

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