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Week beginning 02.12.19

Our alien eggs finally hatched with our little visitors hiding up in our ceilings until their grateful parents collected them. Willow has set about decorating her lighthouse for Christmas and has been posing us questions about the season and giving some ideas on things to do.                                       English/RE: We researched the nativity and created our own nativity scene, placing the characters in order of importance.                                             D/T: we continued working on our boxes and our gift labels.              Science: we looked at the parts of the face, drawing and labeling a diagram. In Music with Mrs Watkins we are perfecting our Christmas songs.                 In hand writing we continued the curly caterpillar letters c, a, d, g, q and o.     We have been choreographing our dances and looking at staging our production. We have been going over lines but still need help learning them at home.  

Week beginning 25.11.19

Willow has managed to return to Earth and she and her friends are getting used to being back by the sea.                                                      Phonics: we have been consolidating our reading and use of the split digraphs via a variety of different activities such as cross-splits, a crossword game where we try different vowels to make real words fit into the grid. \we are becoming more confident and will now start looking at the other long vowel alternatives.                                                                          English/History: Willow’s adventures on the moon got her to thinking about the first men in space and on the moon. She also wondered when the first woman went onto space. We completed whole class comprehensions and tried a true or false game about Neil Armstrong. It helped us realise how history can be altered by a bit of misinformation!                                                   D/T: we finished off our moon crater inspired Christmas table tea light-holders and then began detailed Masu origami boxes to hold them safely. We hope to make lids too if we have time. Some children took part in a joint DT project with other schools in the area on Monday afternoon, creating salt dough Christmas decorations.                                                                  Science: part of our human body studies is to look at personal hygiene. On Monday we looked at hand washing and cleaning teeth, taking part in a variety of different activities. On Wednesday afternoon one of our parents, a professional nurse, came in and taught us all how to wash our hands just like real nurses and doctors! It was very informative and the children should now be able to share this with you at home, a leaflet came home too.  Thanks to Niamh’s mum, you were a star!                                                             In Music with Mrs Watkins we are concentrating on our diction and sweetness of singing, now that most of the words have been learnt for the Christmas show. Performance and singing are an integral part of our music curriculum.                                                                                         In hand writing we went over the curly caterpillar letters c, a, d, g, q and o.                                                                                                         We had our final parent’s evening on Wednesday, not without its own dramas! Unfortunately Miss Newcombe slipped just prior to the meetings beginning and suffered a nasty injury to her hand. Thankfully she is alright, though suffered a very bad strain and must look after herself and keep her hand elevated. She has bravely been coming into school. Her meetings will be rescheduled.

Week beginning 18.11.19

Willow is still stuck on the moon! Too many moon moths attracted to her green gems causes them to stop working well enough for a successful launch!. She searched the moon and found out that they were part of an old experiment sent from Earth. She planted cabbages and flowers, and with a bit of magic helped them grow enough to attract the moths away from her lighthouse. We hope that she will be able to blast off for home soon!

Phonics: we went back over all the split digraphs, reading real and alien words. We managed to fit in some phonic screen work with pupils from both classes too. We hope to complete the rest next week. It is looking good so far!

English: we explored the life of Laika the space dog and Ham the chimp who successfully returned to Earth. We looked at how to put a fact file together, (or non-chronological report), choosing facts we found interesting during our research.

D/T: work on the Christmas clay projects continued.

Science: as part of our human body studies, we looked at the differences between boys and girls. We also carried out an investigation on sound and hearing.

We labelled a diagram of the solar system, being careful to put them in the correct order from the sun.

In Music with Mrs Watkins we continue to work on those tricky words from the traditional carols we will share with you all. We are most impressed by how quickly and how well they are performing the songs.

In hand writing we went over the one-armed robot letters, as they are still proving tricky! They are r, n, m, h, b, k and p. You can look them up on the internet and practice them at home too.

Thank you for making it to parents evening. Our next one is this coming Wednesday 27th November – please check your times.

Week beginning 11.11.19

We returned back to school after the weekend to find the egg still glowing a bit red/brown and it had spread more tendrils across our ceiling. The children think it’s getting ready to hatch. Many messages received from Willow on the moon. She has met a small roboctopus, who was helping her collect more green space gems to enable her to blast off back to Earth. She spotted the damaged alien spaceship orbiting the moon; the occupants even secretly searched the lighthouse for their vessels missing parts. A big bot came along offering large green space gems for the missing parts. Roboctopus had found his original crash site where the parts still lay (he had a bump on the head and temporary amnesia). The swap was successful and Willow will be preparing to return to Earth. Once the alien spaceship is fixed, will they return to collect their eggs?

The space element of this topic is capturing imaginations and lots of super homework is being shared. Prompt your child to share their work with the class!

Phonics: we looked at the remaining split digraphs; i-e, o-e, u-e and the skills of decoding alien words e.g. bloosh, drobe and splix.

English: we worked on learning the first part of the story ‘The Way Back Home’, using actions to aid recall and when sentences began and ended. On Thursday we wrote the story down with only the pictures and our actions to help us. Great resilience was needed and everyone gave it their best. On Friday we competed a seasons poem making our own selections from a class generated word bank. We are becoming quite good season experts.

D/T: some of us started our Christmas clay project, using skills practiced last week when making divas.

Science: we began looking at the human body, playing body bingo. We had to select six parts of the body of a friend to label from a given selection. As the teacher called out each part, if we had labelled that part we could remove the label. The winners were the group that removed all the labels before anyone else. This was a popular game. We then labelled a diagram of the human body.

In Art: we explored composition, placing our planets on our star splattered backgrounds. We chose 5 planets out of the 8 we had made and moved them around until we were happy with the overall effect. They are exhibited in our classrooms, have a look next time you are in.

In Music with Mrs Watkins we worked on our Christmas songs and the tricky traditional words are beginning to sink in.

In handwriting we look at one-armed robot letters, these are tricky because they include a bounce! They are r, n, m, h, b, k and p. You can look them up on the internet and practice them at home too.

Week beginning 04.11.19

After a fortnight break, we started the new half term with two days of RE studies. We looked at Hinduism, the festival of Diwali and the story of Rama and Sita.

Willow’s lighthouse shot off into space at the end of last half term, with Willow, Polly, Percy and the raven king hiding in her bed! They bumped into an alien spacecraft and then landed on the moon! The aliens crashed onto the school roof and left us a message. They had left a couple of eggs for us to look after while they looked for the bit of their ship knocked off by Willow.

Phonics: we are moving on to phase 5 and starting with the long vowel sounds. We looked at ‘ai’, ‘ay’ and ‘a-e’ split digraph.

English: we wrote about a part of the Rama and Sita story. We had a part of a story to read and find clues about. We then looked at the full story and answered lots of questions about the text, events and characters.

D/T: we made paper lanterns, decorating them with patterns and we also moulded diwa lamps out of plasticine.

Science: we used our 5 senses to explore traditional Diwali food. We used our sight to look at the colours, our sense of smell to sniff its yumminess and taste to savour the spicy flavours. The mango lassi was a favourite.

In Art: we coloured and created rangoli patterns. We explored making secondary colours using just the primary colours, watching them bleed and merge in a wet on wet technique to make secondary colours. This will be used for our planets in a space picture. We also learnt how to splatter to make stars on our space background. Our teachers got covered!!

In Music with Mrs Watkins we rehearsed our Christmas songs – yes it does seem early but there is a lot to cover and learn!

We started our handwriting workshops this week and on these days the atmosphere was calm and purposeful. Remember you are welcome in class on Mondays and Fridays to share read and write in diaries to earn extra Dojo points.

Week beginning 14.10.19

Another week of learning before we break up for a well-deserved two week half term holiday. The children have managed to combat a variety of different illnesses, though some did succumb and stay in bed.

Willow returned to Plover Scar with the fire gem and the raven king. The lighthouse was mysteriously cloaked in a creepy fog and her two puffin friends failed to welcome her back. She discovered them in her bedroom, squeezed into a hollow pumpkin with their beaks tied up with sticky web. The huge spider was busy covering the room with more webs as a booby trap for Willow. The room was full of spooky Halloween pumpkins too! Willow grabbed her broom and swept them all out of the window freeing her friends. She sent a letter to the Autumn Sorcerer asking for a meeting. He appeared and gave her a new green gem, one from the sky. Willow experimented with it but it exploded and sent her lighthouse out into space, with her hiding in her bed with her friends. Where will they end up?

Phonics: more work on the tricky trigraphs from phase 3 and those all-important sight words from foundation. It is vital that your child extends their sight vocabulary, please play the games sent home!

English: we started the week with a visual comprehension, an image of what Willow discovered in her bedroom. We looked for clues to piece together the events. We went over vocabulary we might need for our writing. We later in the week wrote about the image, adding extra detail to our sentences.  

Maths: we started work on place value, understanding the value of each digit in a two digit number e.b. 12 is one 10 and two ones, 15 is one ten and five ones. We learnt to make them using tens sticks and ones cubes. We went over the teen numbers. We then looked at equipment to work out which teen number it made. We then drew the equipment for a given number. There were two star and three star challenges where we looked at larger numbers e.g. 36 is three tens and six ones à lll :::

Science: we completed an autumn treasure hunt, looking carefully at 11 different plant fruits from our playground and then finding where they were. This was a lot of fun despite the drizzle!

In Art: we designed some spooky faces for Halloween pumpkins.

In Design Technology, we recorded our evaluations of our windsocks, the artistic design as well as how well it worked.

In Music with Mrs Watkins we rehearsed harvest songs and then performed at the church on Thursday. Thank you to those of you who walked with us, and those who attended. The children did us proud.

Next half term we will follow Willow’s adventures into space. New homework ideas connected to space are in book-bags (you can stick them into home study journals). The first two days back will be about Diwali, Hinduism, and the Rama and Sita story.

Please remember you are welcome to come in to classrooms for a Dojo read on Mondays and Fridays. The other days of the week, adults will be allowed into the cloakroom only, allowing us to crack on with our handwriting workshops. This will also allow greater independence and a calmer start to our working day.

Enjoy the half term.

Week beginning 07.10.19

We thought last week was tough! This week has been super busy but the children have shown great resilience! Storm week was fine for most of the time and then on Friday along came the rain and wind! Maybe next week we will have sunshine back again.

Willow sailed across to Liverpool and caught a coach to London. The oldest building in London is the white tower, part of the Tower of London. Whilst searching the grounds and inside she found ravens, beefeaters and a temporary exhibition of pumpkin paintings! Somewhere in the Tower she hoped to find her fire gem. Following clues she finally met the king raven who had hidden the gem deep in the dungeons. He released the gem only after she agreed to help him escape the tower of London!

Phonics: we continued with our usual recap of phase 3 with special attention to ‘air’, ‘ear’ and ‘er’. We made words, decoded words and read words. We went over another set of reception words.

English: we looked closely at a still life painting of pumpkins by an American artist Janet Rickus. We talked about what we saw and answered questions that made us look deeper and discuss our feelings, preferences and even use our imaginations to tell a story. We went on to write interesting sentences about pictures of ravens doing various things.

Maths: we continued with our pairs to 10, exploring through a variety of different activities. We finished the week by going over our number formation in an attempt to cure some of our reversal issues.

Science: we looked at the four seasons and ordered them. We then coloured trees to show what happens in each season. As a class we completed an autumn quiz.

Art: In art we sketched a still life of pumpkins using sketching pencils. Later in the week we drew the pumpkins using oils pastels, trying our best to draw what we saw, shape, colour and texture.

In Design Technology, we waited for a dry windy day and then tested our windsocks. We found out that it worked best when the mouth points into the blowing wind, that way the tails flap straight behind and show which way the wind is blowing.

In Music with Mrs Watkins we went over our travel songs and then went over the harvest songs in readiness for next week’s harvest festival.

Thank you to the group of parents that made our phonics and reading evening, we hope you found it useful. We plan on amending the presentation and placing it on the website for those who couldn’t make it.

The results of the questionnaire regarding morning drop off have been collated. The large majority of those who responded were in support of parents coming in on Mondays and Fridays, only dropping off in the cloakroom on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. This will enable us to run a handwriting workshop straight away during register. This will commence straight after the half term holiday.

Week beginning 30.09.19

‘Wind Week’ seemed to have more rain and sun than wind, but we carried on regardless and managed to complete work using what we already know and from watching videos of live footage.

Willow reached Belfast using ‘Leprechaun Airlines’, after delays due to high winds in Scotland. She followed clues to Belfast castle and we helped her complete tasks set by the leprechaun and sneaky sea gull! By the end of the week we had worked hard enough to help her find her air gem! She now needs to travel to London in England to find her fire gem. She is looking for the oldest building in London. Do you know what it is?

Phonics: we did more work on phase 3 and worked on our segment and blend skills with a practical word maker in our learning crews. We also worked on sight recognition of some of the reception words to fill further gaps.

English: we had to help Percy the puffin complete challenges set by a tricky sea gull. He had written some sentences about wind but they did not include all the rules of a sentence. We worked in our learning crews to spot the mistakes and correct them. The missing finger spaces made it extra tricky. We then wrote simple sentences and captions about the wind and signs of autumn. The rules are easier to remember than use!

Maths: we explored the pairs of numbers that make 10. We worked on practical tasks, pictorial representations and then number sentences. We sang songs that will hopefully help our recall. We will do quizzes and play a variety of games to help us build up recall. Please play games with these numbers at home. Start with a logical pattern then mix them up.

Science: we used what we knew about common materials to identify them, describe them and then match them to their source material. We watched some videos about materials being created; metal ore into metal, wood into paper, sand into glass etc. It is truly amazing how human beings discovered all these things!

In Design Technology we designed our wind socks, selecting patterns and colours. We constructed them with help and next week we will test them (if any wind arrives) and evaluate them. You may have seen a gallery of them in the classrooms!

In Music with Mrs Watkins we have been learning songs about transport and also harvest. The harvest festival will be coming very soon!. We have looked at dynamics in music, how to make things softer and louder.

Please respond to the messages sent you about our phonic meeting and the handwriting workshop on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, leaving Monday and Friday for Dojo reads. We value your opinions and your assistance at home. The phonics meeting will be practical and fun, and hopefully very helpful!

Week beginning 23.09.19

A busy week this week! We have managed to cram a lot in and still manage continuous provision (self selection/learning through play). It was rain week and nature didn’t let us down too much! The clouds opened and the sun shone, quite a mix and a lot to discuss.

Willow made it to Edinburgh by train and was met by worse weather than us. She took shelter in Edinburgh castle and we helped her solve clues that took her to the statue of Greyfriars Bobby. We saw kilted men playing bagpipes and learnt about haggis!

Phonics: we carried on with our recap of phase 3 and worked on our segment and blend skills with a word maker. We also worked on sight recognition of some of the reception words to fill any gaps.

English: we had our first whole class comprehension, reading a message sent by a sneaky seagull to the Autumn sorcerer. We read it together and in our learning crews before answering questions. We spotted new words and worked out the meaning of some others. In the next session, we explored a word map, all words and phrases to do with rain. Some we have heard our families use, like ‘cats and dogs’. We tried using our favourites in spoken sentences. Some of us continued using them to describe the rest of the week’s weather! We then looked at writing simple sentences about a rain-inspired picture. Finally we created a whole class poem about rain using some of the new language.

Maths: we looked at 1 more than and 1 less than a given number, practical and then written. We looked at finding all the pairs of numbers to 5 and then recorded some of them in our books.

Science: we carried out a waterproof investigation, using our prediction skills, carrying out the test and then recording the outcome. Some of us predicted correctly using what we already knew about the materials. Some of the materials were a surprise, like the cardboard. This investigation was to help Willow make her own umbrella.

In Design Technology, we made our sandwich designs and for most of us, they were a complete hit, despite only just having had lunch! We were able to describe what made it a good sandwich and what we might add to make it even better next time.

All this work helped Willow track down her water gem inside a haggis! She is now heading off to Belfast in Northern Ireland to find the next stolen gem. Watch this space!

Next week is ‘Wind week’ – interestingly enough hurricane Lorenzo is due to visit us on Wednesday! Please share all the words and phrases you use to describe the weather with your child

Week beginning 16.09.19

Our second full week in year one started a little shaky for some but we soon got back into the swing of it. It is tiring for the adults let alone the children! Colds have begun as well so we are going over hygiene rules; hand over mouth for a cough, tissues used once and put in the bin and lots of hand washing.

We had our ‘meet the teacher’ meeting on Tuesday when we went over systems, end of year expectations and how you can support at home. We also sent home a double-sided game and a list of words and phonemes. Please use these at home to support their sight recall of high frequency words and their spelling of the foundation word list. If your child is already confident with these then please ask us for the 100 high frequency words and the following 200.

We continue to follow the adventures of Willow the weather witch as she searches the UK for her stolen weather gems. So far, she has been to Cardiff in Wales and our learning has helped her locate the missing ‘storm’ gem. She is now on her way to Edinburgh in Scotland. Please share with your child anything you know about Wales and Scotland to aid their understanding and knowledge of the UK.

Phonics: we continue to recap the phase 3 digraphs and trigraphs such as air, ear, ure and er. We also go over segment and blend skills as well as playing a word game for sight recall.

English: we have been looking at making vertical lists using bullet points for each item on the list. We made a list of things we might put in a suitcase for a short trip and for the ingredients to make a healthy sandwich should we be hungry during the journey.

Maths: we looked at which is the smallest and largest number in a random pair up to 10, up to 20 and then up to 30. We also ordered 5 random numbers to 10, to 20 and tried some up to 100. We continue to sing the count up and count down songs to 20.

Science: we identified objects, their materials and selected the word that would best describe them using our senses. We worked in learning crews and then on our own.

Next week we will be making our sandwich designs (the one we created a list for) and evaluating them. We are aware of a variety of different dietary needs within the cohort and will ensure that there is gluten free bread available, non dairy spread and choices for those who do not eat meat or pork (ham). If you have any concerns please let us know asap.

Curriculum for Autumn Term 1

Week beginning 09.09.19

Our first full week in year one has gone really well, with only a few tears and shaky mornings. We can assure you that after you have gone they settle really quickly and get on well with their day.

Phonics: we have been revisiting phase 2 and phase 3 to see how much has been recalled over the summer break. The children seem to have retained a lot of the phase 2 phonemes which means we can concentrate on the phase 3 digraphs and trigraphs up to half term. We will be checking their tricky word recall over the following week, making sure they have remembered the reception words before moving on to the year one words. You can help with this at home. We will discuss homework at the coming ‘Meet the teacher’ meeting.

English: we have been following the adventures of Willow the weather witch and helping her solve clues so that she can travel around the capital cities of the UK and retrieve her stolen gem stones which she uses to create weather systems. This week she was directed to Cardiff and we had to write two simple sentences describing what we saw in the clues. The children also showed us sentence rule recall and their letter formation.

Maths: we have been looking at counting reliably up to 20, saying the numbers to 20 from any given number and in reverse. We have also written our numbers to 20. This helps us know what we need to cover to meet expected by the end of the autumn term. Teen numbers are an area to work on for many of us, and counting back will be part of a class target for this half term.

Science: in science we have been learning about common materials. After Willow’s lighthouse was damaged in a failed spell experiment, she has started repairs. The children identified materials she might need and what for. We identified common materials in the classroom and described them using our senses. You could look for things made of wood, metal, plastic, glass, rubber, leather, fabric, brick, stone and wool at home.

During this first half term we will be easing the children into the Year 1 curriculum with a similar system to foundation, with small group tasks, short whole class tasks and time for them to self-select and learn through play.

PE is Monday and Tuesday. Please supply tape for earrings.

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