Week beginning 08.07.19
We are fast approaching the end of the school year and transition into Year 2 becomes a priority, visits to new classrooms, meeting the new teacher and getting mentally ready for the challenges ahead. We did the class swap on Wednesday morning, staying with our new teachers, exploring classrooms and discussing aspirations for the future.
In phonics the main focus was again spelling of high frequency words. The games have helped most of the children to spell with greater accuracy and consistency. We have also been encouraging children to spell words aloud using the letter names, moving away from spelling phonetically.
In maths we looked at o’clock and half past. We looked at recording the time using a 24 hour clock e.g 12 o’clock = 12.00 half past 3 = 3.30. We learnt that there are 60 seconds in a minute and 60 minutes in an hour, 24 hours to a day.
In English we spent two days on a comprehension, reading a story about a trip to the zoo based on true life events. The piece was broken up into paragraphs and we went through them one at a time. This enabled us to predict possible future events as well as discuss the story with links to our own experiences. We looked back at the text in order to give the fullest possible answer and not just rely on memory. We also worked on an African mammal booklet, reading labels and captions before sticking them onto the diagrams of each animal. We have watched video documentaries about different animals, wondering at the diversity of life on our planet.
Reports were sent home on Friday in book-bags, please make sure that you find them! If you have any issues with the report, please contact your class teacher. Each report is unique to your child and takes a lot of time to write and compile.
The next week and a half will fly by very quickly and we still have some curriculum things to teach and learn. More whole class learning will take place and we will try hard to have fun before we say a fond farewell.
Week beginning 01.07.19
A busy week with lots of things going on!
In phonics the main focus was spelling of high frequency words. The children enjoy the challenge of missing vowels and anagrams.
In maths we looked at the value of British coins, adding coins together to make a given amount and finding the change after purchasing something. This will need some consolidation at home as it is trickier than you may think.
In TT we read ‘The Great Pet Sale’ by Mick Inkpen, which linked in well with our money focus. The children answered a variety of different questions as well as decoding new vocabulary such as ‘assorted’. We classified animals into different groups; mammal, fish, bird, amphibian, reptile and insect. We are becoming great zoologists. We read sentences and chose the best word to fit a missing space so that the sentence made sense. We wrote sentences about a picture, which showed a young girl riding a tiger through a forest festooned with toadstools. We also coloured peg puppets.
Wednesday was our trip to ‘The Yorkshire Wildlife Park’ and the weather stayed good for us. A huge thank you to the parent helpers who accompanied us on the trip. It was a brilliant experience and although a lot of walking, the children didn’t complain and were enthralled by what they saw. Lots of the animals found the heat too much and just lay down or hid in their sheds. There was enough to see that was brave enough to venture into the sun, this led to a lot of good discussion. The baboons were a real treat and kept us all highly entertained.
Thursday was Sports day with a rehearsal in the morning and the event with parents in the afternoon. The children were in house teams and we spent most of the day out in the sun. The children were really well behaved and tried their best at the activities.
Friday was a day of recovery without too many taxing activities, a bit of phonics and spelling, a tiny bit of maths, some film comprehension (Epic) and a transition story in new classrooms.
We will be doing less formal teaching over the next few weeks as we wind down and get ready for next year and say good-bye to this. Do not panic if their diaries are not written in, they will be involved in more whole class reading activities to fit into a busy timetable.
Week beginning 24.06.19
Another four-day week crammed full of five days learning!
On Tuesday we spotted the fangle had moved its box to make a nest and had found some grapes from somewhere and eaten them! A sweet tooth it seems. Throughout the week it kept moving and we had to spot where it had got to. In Phonics it was more spelling of common exception words and using phonic alternatives for spelling unfamiliar words. Still looking at phase 3 and phase 5 phonemes with the group and individual activities are still spelling focussed. Please play the spelling game with us at home, it will help us enormously.
In English we had a geography focus, comparing Nottingham to a Japanese city, Matsumoto. We were very observant and it sparked lots of lively discussion, relating personal experiences of Nottingham and travelling abroad. The island nation of Japan has really captured our imaginations and we have enjoyed looking at objects brought in. Thank you to those parents who sent in things to share. We have watched videos and talked about what we have seen. We enjoy celebrating diversity whilst realising how similar we all are around the world.
In Maths we looked at the value of coins and then we looked at adding coins together to purchase pets from a pet shop. We tried to use our place value and addition skills. This was not as easy as we first thought. Seeing coins made some of us forget our number skills. Please help us at home, we could use coin jars and piggy banks.
In Topic Time we worked with an adult to read the letter from the boggart queen and answer questions. We wrote sentences describing what we could see in an image of a elf prince holding a baby dragon whilst his frightened father clung on the cave wall! We had to correct the punctuation in sentences about pets and write in missing words to help sentences make sense. We also wrote simple sentences about pets making sure that our punctuation was correct. Some of us added extra detail with adjectives, using a connective and exciting verbs.
In Music with Mrs Watkins we went over all the areas of music covered this year; pitch, duration, beat and composition. We sang some favourite songs and learnt some new animal songs. We were in fine voice and showed how much the recent presentation to parents had helped our confidence. Mrs Watkins was very impressed.
Some transition sessions have begun, with small groups paying quick visits to their new classrooms. Hopefully this will comfort some of the more nervous children who find moving up a year tricky. It was our farewell to Miss Ash on Friday which made us very sad. We have enjoyed having her teach us for the past three months. Good luck in Bangkok!
Next week is our trip, Wednesday 3rd July 2019. We set off by 9:15, please make sure that any travel sickness pills have been taken or magic wrist bands are being worn. Please make sure they are appropriately dressed for the weather. School uniform is not required but sensible shoes are! There is a lot of walking. Back pack with space for lunch (provided by school or own as preferred) water bottles suitable for the day and sun cream and sun hats. We will be back between 5 and half past depending on the traffic, we aim to leave the park by 4pm. The school will keep you updated by parent mail.
Week beginning 17.06.19
A four-day week with so much to cram in! Just in case there is any misunderstanding, an INSET day is not when teachers and support staff look at mini beasts or even have a day off as some children think! It is an in house training day and fulfils the statutory requirement for teaching and support staff training. The Friday was first aid, 8.30 – 3.30 with a half hour for lunch, quite intense. Thank you to everyone who made our presentation on Thursday afternoon, it was a great turn out and we hope you were as proud of the children as we were. All the hours of effort paid off and they really stepped up and tried their best. Thank you for the kind words made by some of you afterwards, any further comments, positive or constructive are welcomed via Dojo so we can perfect presentations in the future. On Monday we were left boxes by the boggarts which contained rare creatures called fangles. They freeze when seen but move about when nobody around! We have been asked to care for the fangles as if they were our pets. This introduces us to animals in our homes and exotic animals. In Phonics we have continued to look more at the spelling of common exception words and using phonic alternatives for spelling unfamiliar words. We still look at phase 3 and phase 5 phonemes but all the group and individual activities are spelling focussed.
In English we completed our evaluations of the Art and D/T projects which went on show on Thursday after the presentation. The children looked hard at their work and at their initial designs and decided what they liked most and what they wanted to improve if they did it again. There were a few who announced that they hadn’t made an item because of illness or it had gone missing! A quick session was added for these so that everyone had what they needed for the big share.
In Maths we looked at word problems for subtraction. We explored finding the answer practically and by drawing our working out using sticks and pebbles (tens and ones – place value). We looked for key words in the problem to help us spot it was a subtraction problem. An example of a problem might be: Bock the goblin had 28 ants. He ate 14 of them. How many ants does Bock have left? We would draw each amount out in sticks and stones (tens and ones) and cross out the smaller amount l:: which would leave a total of 14. Try some at home.
In Topic Time the children worked with an adult on checking their colour bands, so many were ready to move on up! Independent tasks included; writing about a picture of an elf tackling a giant spider. Writing a letter to the boggart queen suggesting they find somewhere else to live. Creating a fact sheet about their own mash up animal (a combination of different animals) and writing simple sentences so they concentrate on capital letters, full stops, finger spaces, handwriting, spelling and adding adjectives and exciting verbs.
Our ‘Spelling Spell Words’ workshops have been going well and we will keep these going until the end of term.
In Music Mrs Watkins worked with whole classes on the songs and then with small groups on perfecting their compositions. She put in extra time to do even more of this on Tuesday as well as spending extra time for the performance. We showed the whole school the songs and acting on Thursday morning.
We are fast approaching the end of the school year and it often becomes quite busy and hectic. There is a lot of transition work that goes into place in readiness for Year Two. There is our trip next week, followed by sports day. There are end of year reports being written by teachers as well as transition notes for their new teachers. We will endeavour to make the last few weeks memorable and fun. The week beginning the 24th June will be Miss Ash’s last week with Comets and she will complete her training and prepare to fly off to Bangkok. We will miss her terribly and wish her all the best for the future. The children have become very fond of her and she taught the class brilliantly. She will sneak back for our trip and help us fulfil required staff numbers.
Week beginning 10.06.19
In Phonics we have moved some of the focus toward the spelling of common exception words and using phonic alternatives for spelling unfamiliar words. The children made us proud with the phonic screen last week and you will know their results when their yearly report is sent home. We need conformation of the pass mark before we can confirm any results. Please play the spelling game at home, the remaining few weeks will be a big push on correct spelling so that more children can become age related and above in writing.
In English we looked more carefully at the key features of a fact sheet. We did this through class comprehensions about badgers, squirrels and magpies. We looked at titles, headings and paragraphing. We worked in groups, in pairs and on our own. We learnt a lot of interesting facts about each creature.
In Maths we looked at word problems for addition. We explored finding the answer practically and by drawing our working out using sticks and pebbles (tens and ones – place value). We looked for key words in the problem to help us spot if it was an addition or subtraction. An example of a problem might be: Blig the goblin picked 24 toadstools in the morning and another 14 in the afternoon. How many toadstools did Blig have altogether? We would draw each amount: ll:: + l:: add them lll:::: and find the total = 38
In Topic Time we worked with an adult on our Passports to life, reading the booklet and deciding on the experiences we have already had during our time at Westdale. We also wrote sentences about our achievements outside of school, such as swimming awards, travelling on a plane or train. We labelled a diagram of a hedgehog and a bat, researching information to write a caption. As scientists we cut out images of animal young and matched them with their parent. There was a mixture of domestic and wild animals. We also created our Fathers’ day card using collage techniques.
Our handwriting workshops have been adapted into spelling workshops, using our handwriting to perfect our key word spellings.
In Music Mrs Watkins worked with our teachers on our first rehearsal of the music and performance we will share next Thursday. We are so much better at the songs and lyrics. We are so nearly there with our words and characters. Please go over the words that came home in book bags, the more confident we become the better the performance will be. We hope to perform before the whole school on Thursday morning to share our learning with the other children in school.
We finished watching My Neighbour Totoro, the film was a big hit and we learnt a few things about how Japan differs from the UK. We will continue to look at the similarities and differences between the two island natures as part of geography work, this will include the animals that inhabit the islands of Japan as well. Do you know of any?
We are hearing some interesting news on the plants that come home. Remember you can share images on Dojo, this enables us to share with our class.
Thursday the 20th June is our ‘Enchanted Wood’ presentation. 2:45 in the school hall, please come through the reception doors and sign in. Our work will be laid out on tables in our classrooms, labelled with our crew names. We hope this will free up space in the hall for seating to enable a better view of the stage and also allow you to have a better look without too much crowding. Please do not take any of the exhibits as we will need them for a display. They will come home before the end of term, honest! You will be able to take your child home after the gallery in classrooms, which will follow the performance in the hall. Please let us know you are taking your child and you can then exit through the playground doors.
We were inundated with offers of help on our trip. For safety reasons we need to take so many staff members /helpers, we also have limited seat numbers on the coach. We will contact the parents who were pulled from the hat. If you were not picked we will keep you on our short list in case anyone has to pull out due to unforeseen circumstances. If you are unlucky on this occasion (there will be more opportunities in Year Two) and you are willing to make your own way there and pay your own entrance into the park, we will be more than happy to see you there. Remember however that it is a school trip and the safety of the children is our first concern. We will walk around the park together but we will allocate children to adults in smaller groups, this helps us discuss what we see, question and offer information. It also helps us do regular head counts and supervise toilet visits etc. We want the day to be informative, enjoyable and safe. Further information on lunches and clothing etc will come out closer to the time. Yorkshire Wildlife Park on the 3rd of July 2019.Please, please continue to read regularly and sign diaries. We will be assessing their book bands over the next two weeks as part of our assessment. The number of books available in the boxes is becoming quite depleted; we are hoping it is due to your enthusiasm. If any books are lying around at home unreturned, could you please send them in as soon as possible.
Week beginning 03.06.19
In Phonics we are focusing on the phase 3 and phase 5 digraphs and trigraphs which the children are less confident with, whilst still going over the strategies of decoding real and unreal words. We played games, answered challenges and went over adding phoneme buttons.
In English we had a letter from Lilly and Len about the boggart visits to our classrooms, they had strung up a couple of figures upside down from our shared area and put funny boggart clown faces on them! Cheeky! Apparently, they like to cross the busy road by riding on the back of an urban fox! We started the week learning about foxes and labelling a diagram using adjectives. We researched in learning crews and looked at key features of a fact sheet. The next day we looked at another animal friendly with boggarts, the British adder. Did you know they give birth to live young? Britain’s only venomous snake that can grow to 60cm long! We also found out what our magical being might be by turning our names into a number code, adding them together and using a key of results! Some of us were not pleased with our results, but it was all in fun! Mr Hedges is a boggart and Mr Crookes a dwarf!
In Maths we answered addition and subtraction problems by drawing tens and ones as sticks and stones, just like Midge the wood elf. We then went on to look at fractions of numbers practically using equipment and sharing it out. It reminded us of our division work and our multiples work too!
In Topic Time we labelled a diagram of a barn owl, a friend of Lilly and Len. We made origami fox heads and cut and folded bat nightmare scarers. We read a traditional tale from Japan called Momotaro with an adult and answered questions about the text. It reminded us of similar European traditional tales. We also looked at maps of the UK and Japan and saw that they are both island nations. We labelled the countries and sea of the UK and the main four islands and seas of Japan.
In our handwriting workshop we did a couple of days of joins and then looked at sound buttons in preparation for the phonics screen.
In Music Mrs Watkins has continued to take groups at a time to work on the compositions for our presentation next half term as well as singing songs together.
We again worked on our group presentation pieces. We started to watch My Neighbour Totoro, a film about a magical nature spirit in Japan. We looked at similarities and differences between Japan and Britain whilst enjoying the story. If you have interesting knowledge about Japan, please share with your child. Sample food at home, take photos and put on Dojo!
Bean plants that came home (some were runner bean, some broad bean and strangely some were peas!) can be transplanted into the garden at this time of year. All will benefit from some support, helps against wind damage. Keep us updated on their progress – we already have photos of a plant that has flowered!
Information has gone out about our performance on the 20th June and our trip to Yorkshire Wildlife Park on the 3rd of July 2019. Please check Dojo, the website, parent mail and book bags. If in doubt please ask at either end of the day. This is a very busy time of the year for the school and we try to organise things as best we can amidst all the other administration required of us in the Summer Term. Pray for fine weather in July for the trip and sports day.
Please continue to read regularly and sign diaries. We are happy when you think your child is ready to move up a stage, please let us check before you start to take books. There are a number of considerations we need to take into account before moving them up as it will affect our Summer Term assessments and their transition in to Year Two.
Week beginning 20.05.19
In Phonics we are focusing on more digraphs/trigraphs that we need to make secure. This week we have covered ea, oa, er, igh . We have also continued our recap on split digraphs a-e, e-e, i-e, o-e, u-e every Friday. Please help us spot them when reading over the half term! We may not count the holiday reads as Dojo but it is still vital that you read regularly.
In English we concentrated on Hansel and Gretel as our focus, especially the part where the witch met her sizzling end! We pretended we were looking through the window and watching what happened. We shared vocabulary and possible sentence structures. We then sat and wrote our work independently.
In Maths we consolidated our work on division and then started looking at the fraction of shapes, especially whole, half, quarter and three quarters. We were sharing party food between Lilly and Len.
In Topic Time we read instructions on how to make a woodland wand, we followed these instructions and with help from an adult, we are now all proud owners of our own wands.
Other tasks included designing a boggart badge, the last instalment of our bean diary, following compass directions to collect litter and making a magical woodland mask. All the salt-dough fairy doors have been completed by the children (those who were present in school), they look amazing!
In Music Mrs Watkins has continued to take groups at a time to work on the compositions for our presentation next half term.
We have also continued to work on our group presentation pieces. Most of us now know our lines and are working on character voices and actions.
Our beans have been going home with us to care for at home. Please help us record how well they grow at home you could help us post images on Dojo to share with our classmates.
PE kits have been sent home, please make sure that they come back ready for PE the first week back.
Please NO absences during the week commencing 10th of June as it is the official phonic screen week. Do not share this with your child, as we do not want them stressed. They will think we are doing our regular check on what we need to get better at. Keep it low key.
Our performance will be on Thursday 20th June, we will send home further details after half term stating timings and where it will be exactly.
Enjoy the half term, have fun, cram in experiences and read, read, read!
Week beginning 13.05.19
In Phonics we are focusing on digraphs/trigraphs that we need to secure. This week we have covered aw, ear, ai, ur. We have also started to recap split digraphs a-e, e-e, i-e, o-e, u-e every Friday. We are encouraging children to spot before reading. It can be particularly difficult to spot when it is a trigraph or digraph e.g. ea/ ear (bead, beard) and ai/ air (rails, stairs). The more you read the more your child is applying the things we have learnt in phonics so please read as much as you can at home.
In English we were informed that poor Len the woodland elf had fallen over and bumped his head. He had forgotten all about his favourite story ‘Hansel and Gretel’. It was our job to sequence the story to help Len remember it. Then we worked in teams to act it out and perform it to him. It is lovely to see how the children are becoming more confident when performing in front of each other and how they are starting to explore the use of voice, body language and facial expression to portray what is happening. We have also focused on characters in the story this week. We thought of as many adjectives as we could to describe Hansel, Gretel and the witch. We reflected on what they look, sound and smell like. For more of a challenge we also considered how their personality, behaviour, and feelings could be described throughout the story.
In Maths we have explored division for the first time. Midge stole some sweets from the cottage to share with his woodland friends. Unfortunately the wicked witch who lived in the cottage found them and cast a spell to trap them all in cobwebs! We were set missions throughout the week to try and rescue Midge and his woodland friends. We practically shared sweets with a friend to calculate the answers and recorded the number sentences. The children were very good at making sure it was fair and that one person did not get more sweets than the other person!
In Topic Time we read all about boggarts and why they moved to the Marshall Copse. We discovered that Gedling Country Park used to be a coalmine. While some of us were doing this with an adult, the rest of us used symbols in a key to make our own magical map, created instructions on how to make a recycled rubbish putrid potion, recorded week 2 of our bean diary, and rehearsed capital letters in handwriting through writing the countries in the United Kingdom.
In our handwriting workshop we have continued to work on simple joins such as cl, in, im, tr, dr and cr.
In Music Mrs Watkins has continued to take groups at a time to work on the compositions for our presentation next half term.
We have also continued to work on our group presentation pieces. We have discussed in our team who is going to say which parts and started to create actions.
Week beginning Tuesday 06.05.19
Another week that started with a bank holiday, so a lot to fit into just four days!
In Phonics this week we continued to concentrate on the split digraphs; a-e e-e i-e o-e u-e. The e is silent and the vowel uses its long phoneme. A number of the children struggled to spot all of these in a text so please be diligent and supportive when reading with them. It is also a spelling issue, especially when adding suffixes such as ed and ing.
In English we had a challenge from Lily and Len the wood elves. It was based on a well known fairy story. We worked as a whole class and worked together to look for clues to help us work out what was happening in the text! We looked at questions about the text and looked back carefully to find answers. We also looked at the text it was based on, ‘Hansel and Gretel’. Later in the week we acted out a favourite scene, thinking about character and physicality. We met some super witches who met a sizzling end!
In Maths this week we carried out some multiplication calculations, using all the skills we had covered before and applied them to the 2, 5 and 10 times tables. We drew, counted and counted on in our heads or on our hands to help us find the answers.
In our handwriting workshop we have started to look at some simple joins. We looked at joining at, all, th and ch.
In Music we worked on our new songs and also started some group compositions for our presentation next half term.
In our topic-time we read the third and last installment of the adventures of Lily and Len, answering questions and going over new vocabulary. While some of us were doing this with an adult, the rest of us either began our bean diary, labelled a diagram of a plant, rescued litter in a natural setting and explained why it is bad or completed extra handwriting.
We started working on our group presentation pieces. We will learn these off by heart, adding movement and bags of expression to bring it alive. It is based on what baddies say in traditional tales. We are very excited.
Dojo points are not accumulating very fast for a large number of children – please remember to at least sign in the diary when you read regularly at home. The more your child reads the better progress they will make. Please play the spelling game as well.
Week beginning Tuesday 23.04.19
We entered school to find we were going on a magical adventure into the Enchanted Wood. We were met by Fantastic Mr Fox, an elf, a green fairy and a grumpy wizard. The rooms have taken leaf and Year One is becoming quite magical. Exciting times ahead!
In Phonics this week we followed the lead of Fergus Fox into the fantastical Forest of Phonics. He introduced to the characters that will help us with our phonics this term. The characters are up in the classrooms, please take a look. This week he spotted the split digraphs a-e, i-e.
In English we worked in our learning crews and attempted to solve challenges set by the wood elves Lily and Len. If we manage to learn a number of facts about trees, plants, wild British animals, magical beings and traditional tales we will show that we care enough and are responsible enough to visit their magical wood nearby. We knew some of the facts between us but there is still a lot of learning to do. This will help us with our geography, history and science work as well as English.
There was no guided group reading this week, but it will begin again fresh next week with new group names and some children moving around to even groups up a little. Watch out for the baskets on Monday. We started our handwriting workshop again, first thing, and we recapped the curly caterpillar letters and the one armed robot letters.
In Music we went over some useful old songs from reception and started to learn a couple of new songs ready for our presentation next half term. More news of that will come out soon! It was a short week but already so much has been crammed in!
Remember to read regularly at home and make a comment or at least sign so we can count up Dojo points. We do not count holiday time so have begun with Tuesday 23rd April.
Please make sure all book bags and PE bags are in school.
Homework for adults and children: What is a squirrels home called?
Week beginning 25.03.19
In Phonics this week we boarded two jeeps and visited bases 13 and 14. Whitney taught us the new digraphs ‘au’ and ‘aw’. Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week, these included sorting, segmenting and blending and spotting digraphs and trigraphs in words against the clock. We had to sample both digraphs in possible words to find the correct one e.g. l__nch au or aw?
At the beginning of the week in English we completed lots of small jobs toward our dinosaur museum. At the end of the week we did two whole class comprehensions around a character who lost their torch in a cave. While the character was fumbling around for their torch they discovered a dinosaur. There were lots of hidden clues and key words to help us unpick what was happening. The children discussed questions in their learning teams and then we fed back our ideas as a class.
In Maths we continued to explore multiplication. We focused primarily on counting in 10s this week to ensure we are completely secure with it. We have sung songs, played games and chanted forwards and backwards. We used practical equipment to create ‘lots of’ 10 and recorded multiplication number sentences for the first time.
Due to our Dinosaur Museum we completed whole class comprehensions instead of group reads this week. This enabled us to get busy completing the final touches for our museum such as; sticking features onto our dinosaur puppets, making chocolate mounds, decorating labels for designated areas, designing labels for our bags and recording facts about Mary Anning. We also made Mother’s Day cards in anticipation for today.
In Music we rehearsed our songs, tapped rhythm and beat, and used the glockenspiels ready for our performance. I am sure you will agree that the children really shined and showcased their increasing musical ability during the museum.
On Friday we spontaneously decided to walk across the road to spot signs of spring while the sun was shining. We apologise for the short notice however we often have to make decisions based on the weather for activities such as this. Thank you to any adults who came to help. We spotted daffodils, blossom, ivy, catkins, butterflies, ladybirds, blackbirds, pigeons, dandelions, buds, nests and bumble bees.
We would also like to say a big thank you to everyone who was able to attend our Dinosaur Museum and for those parents who could not attend we hope you enjoyed sharing their work with them at home on Friday. Everyone has worked very hard for a long time to create the experience and the children loved having the opportunity to share this with you. Thank you to the adults who have already given us feedback regarding this. If you haven’t already, please take the time to let us know what went well and any constructive comments for improvement next year, we really do appreciate it!
Week beginning 18.03.19
In Phonics this week we boarded two jeeps and visited bases 11 and 12. Whitney taught us the new digraphs ‘wh’ and ‘ph’. Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week, these included sorting, segmenting and blending and spotting digraphs and trigraphs in words against the clock. We had to sample both digraphs in possible words to find the correct one e.g. __at wh or ph?
In English we have been doing small jobs toward our dinosaur museum, the clock is ticking!
In Maths we started to look at multiplication. We started off by counting up in 10s, 2s and 5s. We had already done this before Christmas but some of us have put it somewhere too safe and are unable to find it again! We will need to revisit this a lot to help our multiplication. We have done songs, games and chanting to try and find where we have hidden the skill! We then looked at ‘lots of’ and started putting equipment into lots of 2. The equipment is quite a distraction and we will need to revisit this a lot to embed it successfully. At home counting your coin jar helps a lot. Count the twos, fives and ten pence coins. This also gives it a purpose. We have also introduced the x sign and associated vocabulary.
In guided reading some of us read a message in a bottle and we were not only encouraged to listen carefully to the words in questions and scan the text for them to help find an answer, but also to predict what might happen next using what we had already read. Some of us read our reading books to check on our skills and recall. We wrote more simple sentences as captions to images. We again concentrated on sentence rules and appearance. Some of us were able to add adjectives and exciting verbs. We worked as a team to match the national symbols, landmarks, flags, castles and cakes to the countries of the UK. Lots of lively discussion arose from this. How many of the countries have you visited? Can you name the capitals? We also looked at the suffix ‘ing’ adding it to regular verbs. We were then encouraged to use the words with the suffix in sentences. There was also the usual handwriting practice and reading for enjoyment too.
In Music we all got together as a year group and worked on our songs for the museum. We are in fine voice but no doubt the sight of an audience will make some of us shy, so be patient.
Topic work was again tricky and we will come off timetable a bit next week in order to finish all our museum jobs. We will be rehearsing, making, painting and involved in a set of smaller activities to keep us on track. We are focussing a lot on the basic structure of sentences in English. We hope to embed this properly so that we can return to creative writing with a much better understanding.
It was a long week for the teachers with two parent evenings. Thank you to the parent/carers who turned up and kept on time. We try our best to stay on schedule but sadly this is very tricky with so many 10 minute slots. If for any reason you failed to sign up at all or missed your appointment for any reason, please contact your class teacher who will endeavour to meet with you before the start of the day.
Dino Museum Wednesday 27th March 2019 2.45 in the main hall, please come through the main entrance
Week beginning 11.03.19
In Phonics this week we bounced aboard the jeep and arrived at base 10. Whitney taught us the new digraph ‘ou’. Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week, these included sorting, segmenting and blending and spotting digraphs and trigraphs in words against the clock. Whip encouraged us to spot words by sight.
In English we performed our movements along with the recitation of the shortened version of ‘We’re going on a dino hunt’. We worked on becoming more familiar with the text and tested each other, performed in groups as well as a class. We then spent a decent amount of time writing it down independently. We tried to focus on sentence structure and using our phonics so we could spell words. We worked hard on this and it took a lot of stamina to complete.
In Maths we continued to work on subtraction, using tens and ones. We then tried a mix of + and -, testing our ability to spot the symbols and remember how to change our strategies when answering questions that didn’t bridge ten. We are becoming much more confident in drawing our equipment. We now need to be more consistent in our checking of our own work.
In guided reading some of us read a recipe for dinosaur biscuits and answered questions about the text. Some of us read reading books and showed where we were up to with word recognition and decoding. While we did this with an adult the other children were engaged in a variety of activities. We wrote simple sentences as captions to images. We had to concentrate on sentence rules and appearance. Some of us were able to add adjectives and more exciting verbs. We added the names of the countries of the UK and their capital cities to a map. We had to look carefully at a map of the UK to check if we were correct. We wrote a debate about whether it was a good or bad idea to bring dinosaurs back to life via the miracles of science. This was a new type of writing and made us really think hard. There was also the usual handwriting practice and reading for enjoyment too.
In Music we had our final session with Mrs Watkins in our smaller glockenspiel groups, these sessions have really shown personal development and Mrs Watkins is pleased with how we have started to master notes and notation.
Staff illness limited our ability to complete all the topic work we wanted to, thankfully a parent helper popped in to do some sewing! We will make a huge effort next week to ensure that we complete everything for our museum! We are grateful to our parent helpers who support reading and sorting fruit for break time. Their time and effort makes a big difference and enables us to concentrate on teaching and learning as well as sharing the learning experience with parent/carers. If you can pop in to help, please do!
Red nose day on Friday was a great success and the rooms were awash with brightly coloured red outfits! Thank you for your very kind donations, it is important for the children to take an active role in supporting those less fortunate nationally and internationally.
Week beginning 11.02.19
In Phonics this week we bounced along in our jeep and arrived at base 6 on Jurassic Phonic Island. Whitney taught us the new digraph ‘oe’. Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week, these included sorting, segmenting and blending words, reading sentences and writing words. Whip added more words to our sight vocabulary list. We are putting a much bigger emphasis on segment and blend, making sure we can all spot the digraphs and trigraphs and read words successfully, real and unreal.
In English we created our own riddles using what we learnt last week. We selected our dinosaur and were grouped with others to share our ideas. We then took a couple of sessions to write out our riddles. It was hard remembering to give each clue its own line and then remembering to add the question sentence at the end. Riddles can be great fun and can be created about anything you like. You could create some about family members!
In Maths we finished off our 2D shape work and looked at 3D shapes. We looked at a sphere, cube, cuboid, cone, triangular prism, and square based and triangular based pyramids. We learnt that they have faces, edges and vertices. Counting these practically was difficult as we kept turning the shapes and forgot what we had already counted!
In Guided Reading/Topic Time we read a poem called ‘Hide’ and answered questions either on paper or verbally. While we did this with an adult the other children were engaged in a variety of activities. We made dinosaur crowns for our museum, using scale shapes and teeth. We wrote descriptive sentences about a diplodocus defending itself against raptors whilst standing in fast flowing rapids. We designed our dinosaur hand puppets in readiness for next half term when we will commence sewing!!! Some of us worked on the long ladder letters in our handwriting books.
In Art and D/T we continued to work on our badge designs, concentrating on careful colouring and shading.
In Music we spent time in small groups with Mrs Watkins exploring the new glockenspiels. We will use these to help us create our own musical notations and perform them back.
Although it was a shorter week, with Friday being an inset day, it was busy and jam packed with things to learn and do.
Over the break, please continue to read a lot, go over pairs of numbers to 10 and 20, explore 2D and 3D shapes at home and just have lots of fun out doors doing family things together!
Week beginning 28.01.19
In Phonics this week we boarded the jeep and bounced across the terrain and arrived at base 4 on Jurassic Phonic Island. Whitney taught us the new digraph ‘ea’ and its two main alternative phonemes; ‘ea’ as in ‘eh’ for head and ‘ea’ as in ‘ee’ for ‘each’. Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week, these included sorting, creating words, segment and blending words, and reading sentences. Whip added even more words to our sight vocabulary list.
In English we continued our dinosaur fact files for our Dino Museum. Each group researched their dinosaur’s habitat and wrote interesting facts. We also created question sentences to affix to the front covers of the files, testing parent/carer knowledge before they look inside.
In Maths we continued our work on measures, using standard centimetre measures to discover the length of objects and dinosaur claw marks. We had to make sure we used the correct side of the ruler where it said cm. We had to line up the 0 on the ruler with the end of what was being measured and look carefully, holding it very still, to read the number at the end of the item being measured. We also attempted an open-ended problem solving activity, discovering different ways of completing a task. Try some at home!
In guided reading we completed the text, ‘Not a Stone’ and answered questions either on paper or verbally depending on which colour band group we work in. While we did this with an adult the other children were engaged in a variety of activities; sorting dinosaurs into carnivore, herbivore and omnivore, not always as easy as it looked! We cut and stuck dinosaurs onto a terrain map after researching which kind of habitat they may have preferred. We wrote about a picture of a skybax and its pilot scooping fish from the sea. Some very exciting sentences were written about the image. There was also a handwriting activity in books to aid the size of small case letters, ascenders and descenders in the one arm robot family.
In art and D/T the printing continued with fossil heads and footprints, these will help make our fact files more attractive.
In Music we continued our work on beat and rhythm and identified long and short sounds, as well as working on our dinosaur songs.
Another busy week packed with variety and topic linked learning. Show and tell has been exciting and informative with children bringing in items linked to our topic. We
have also been able to share some homework books and look at what children have done at home too. Keep up the good work! Read often and sign the diaries, play the spelling game and help your child recall the pairs of numbers to 10 and 20.
Week beginning 21.01.19
In Phonics this week we climbed aboard our Jurassic jeep once more and head off to base 3 on Jurassic Phonic Island. Whitney taught us the new digraph ‘oy’ and Whistler set us more missions to complete throughout the week which included sorting, creating words, adding sound buttons, and reading sentences. Whip added some new words to our sight vocabulary list.
In English we started our dinosaur fact files in readiness for our Dino Museum next half term. Each group was assigned a dinosaur to research and create a file about. We started by naming and labelling a diagram. We then researched its appearance and wrote sentences based on what we found interesting. Another day we researched its habitat and wrote facts about where it was found or the terrain it may have preferred.
In Maths we began our work on measures, using non-standard measures to discover the length of images of dinosaurs. We used linking cubes and made sure we lined them up accurately. We also lined up our class dinosaurs by length, this led to some lively discussion and meant checking with cubes to be sure. We tried measuring with smaller cubes, this proved trickier and less accurate. We tried our hands at estimating lengths before measuring them. We repeated the process with more images to measure and recorded our findings. In guided reading we did our book band checks with some of the groups. While we did this the other children were engaged in a variety of activities; researching an ankylosaur and labelling a diagram, completing an ‘ay’ digraph word search, independent writing about an interesting dinosaur image and playing the dino dig game.
In art and D/T some of us redid our salt dough fossils because the drying process led to some distortion. We want them to be right for the museum. Some of us began printing our covers for our fact files.
In Music we went over the fun dinosaur songs with Mrs Watkins, these are proving very popular and we hope to perform them to you as part of our Dino Museum experience. We recapped duration and started to look more carefully at beat and rhythm.
Hopefully you have dug deep in book bags and found everything that was sent home. We did notice a number of the earlier reading games still in book bags, hopefully they are only in there for safe keeping. Please use the games and ideas sent home to engage your child. The words to learn by sight are vitally important to their reading progress and the new spelling game is designed to improve not only their writing but also embed their sight vocabulary. These resources take a lot of time and effort to make so please make best use of them.
W.B 3rd December 2018
This week has been somewhat disrupted by our rehearsals for the Christmas performance and we moved guided reading into our morning sessions to allow us to make full use of the hall slots in the afternoon. We ensured that reading remained the focus for the week and managed to fit in both guided reading and individual reads. We even had a whole class comprehension on Friday based around ‘The Way Home’ by Oliver Jeffers. This motivated a lot of discussion and engaged the children in using their own experiences, knowledge and imagination to make predictions of what might be happening next at various stages through the text. It also encouraged them to look deeper for clues in the text and illustrations. Using quality texts certainly keeps them engaged and enthusiastic.
In Maths this week we continued with addition by using number lines to 20 and 30. We went over the skills of starting on the larger number and then jumping before counting to ensure an accurate calculation. The children became quite proficient at this and tackled not only the usual 2 and 3 star challenges but even a 4 star challenge. It also helped embed their number knowledge of the numbers to 20; order, orientation and place value.
In Guided Reading on Monday, Thursday and Friday mornings the children have completed a range of independent activities while the teacher reads with a group. The activities this week and next week include: following instructions on how to draw a festive image, perfecting our skills and making improvements. Independent writing using an image as a starting point, describing what is happening and why. Placing a list of words that use the ‘ay’ phoneme into an alphabetical table, writing the ‘ay; phoneme into incomplete words and reading them and then writing sentences using the words. In handwriting we went over the one arm robot letters; r n m h b k and p in our handwriting books, learning how to keep the letters a uniform size as well as remembering to start at the top and bounce. The fine motor task was to carefully colour an alien and its waterproof gear and then cut and stick them together. The main text covered was ‘Moon Base Shock’. Reading in class will be more problematic over the next two weeks, what with rehearsals, Christmas craft activities etc, so it is even more important that you take time to read with your child at home, play the word game and extend their sight vocabulary.
In Phonics we looked at the common long vowel phonemes for ‘e’; ee ea ie and e. We sorted them, added the phonemes to words and blended them; we sorted alien and real words and read words using the phonemes in sentences.
We even managed to squeeze a phonic check with each child to help us plan for next term and pop in some extra sessions for those who need it.
The rehearsals are going really well and the children have managed to recall their lines, the words to the songs and remembered the choreography of their group dances. We managed a couple of stagger throughs, splitting it in half and then on Friday attempted a complete run through! It is in good shape and with a few more rehearsals, especially with live music from Mrs Watkins, we will be confident in performing an incredible show to you on Tuesday 18th December.
Another incredibly busy week!
P.S. Please ensure all costumes are in this coming week please!
W.B 19th November
In English this week we learnt about animals that were sent into space. At the start of the week we did a whole class comprehension about Laika the dog. The children discussed and answered questions in their learning teams. They were encouraged to refer to the text to support their answers. The following day the children researched facts about Laika and selected their favourite facts to copy into their English books. For the rest of the week we learnt about Ham the chimp. We shared a piece of text with the children that had parts missing so they had to look for clues to work out what animal it was. During our work about animals in space we had class discussions about animal rights and reflected on how we should treat animals.
In Maths this week we have started to explore addition. We have continued to link our work on place value with this. We have recorded number sentences in our maths books using the squares for the first time. This is particularly tricky as the children have to remember to put one digit per square and to leave a row after a number sentence. We have also focused on adding ones to model careful one to one counting.
In Guided Reading on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons the children have completed a range of independent activities while the teacher reads with a group. The activities this week and next week include: creating an oil pastel alien self-portrait, labelling the planets in order from the Sun, going over one armed robot letters in different colours, carefully colouring a space dog picture, and ordering a timeline of key event in space.
In Phonics we have recapped all the split digraphs we learnt last week: a-e (snake), e-e (evening), i-e (slide), o-e (phone), u-e (cube, flute). We have read words and spelt words containing split digraphs. We have also played fun games such as split digraph bingo and split digraph dominoes! Please keep spotting split digraphs at home, they are tricky to spot and require a lot of repetition to embed.
As the week progressed our hatched alien has been trying lots of different foods such as carrots, pears and chocolate! The children concluded that it liked chocolate the best as it ate the whole thing and only left the wrapper behind. On Friday the alien broke a whiteboard pen and used the ink to leave a message. Due to this we decided to have an alien themed Friday. The children could choose from a range of activities including: make an alien, plot symbols on an alien island treasure map, write an alien adventure story, identify true/false facts about Ham the chimp, and decode our alien message and alien messages sent by NASA using the alphabet. They had lots of fun selecting which order to complete their activities.
We have also started to create group dances for our Christmas show, rehearsed our songs and we have started to rehearse lines. Please, please go over the lines as much as you can at home.
On Wednesday it was our last of two Parents Evenings. Thank you to the parents who attended, it was great to celebrate the children’s achievements with you.
W.B 1st October
This week we have based our learning around the story ‘The Blue Balloon’ by Mick Inkpen. On Monday we came into school to find balloons in a net on our classroom ceiling! The balloons ‘chose’ the children as they fell out of the net. The children then drew a face on their balloon and gave it a name. They wrote a recount of this in their English book and were then set the mission to take care of their balloon. The purpose of this was to teach the children how to take care of others and how to take care of things. They soon learnt that they had to be gentle and responsible. In English this week, we completed our first whole class comprehension and whole class write. We shared 'The Blue Balloon' story and answered questions about it in our learning teams. The children had to listen carefully for clues and find their answers in the text. The children also did some writing about where they would travel to if they had a magic blue balloon. They came up with lots of interesting ideas and were very motivated by this. Some children even had a go at extending their sentence using a conjunction. We have also continued to do guided reading with small groups and some individual reads.
In Maths we have continued our work on number bonds. The children practically explored numicon to find all the ways of making 10 and then they had a go at matching number card acorns/penguins/hats to create pairs to 10. We have also listened to number bonds to 10 songs to help with instant recall which the children have particularly enjoyed.
In Phonics we have primarily focused on segmenting to spell words. We have ‘robot talked’ a word and then the children have had a go at writing it down on their white boards. The words have included some phase 3 digraphs/trigraphs as well as some phase 4 clusters.
During self-selection time the children have designed wellington boots, matched pictures to seasons, explored number bonds to 10, and continued to use construction to create lighthouses and modes of transport.
We have also been working really hard on our harvest festival songs every day this week. We hope that you will be able to see us perform them at the church on Tuesday!
W.B 6th September
Our first full week back after the long summer break.
The past 7 days have been about settling the children into Year One and making sure they are happy. The children have been given plenty of time for self-selection so they've had the chance to form new friendships, explore their new environment and gel as a class.
During our first couple of days we discussed what we need to do to ensure our class is a happy place where learning can happen and from this we created our own class promise. We voted for our class ambassadors and school council representatives and we shared out responsibilities so everyone has something to look after in the classroom. We also had some R Time where we talked to our partner about our age, pets and favourite food to develop our listening skills and learn something new about each other. We also celebrated our similarities and differences.
Our Topic this half-term is 'Up, Up and Away'. This week we have shared books related to this such as 'Up and Down' by Oliver Jeffers and 'Penguin Small' by Mick Inkpen which the children have really enjoyed. We pretended to go on an adventure like Penguin Small and wrote a list of what we would pack in our suitcase. We also listed ingredients for a sandwich to take with us so we wouldn't get hungry on our adventure.
In Maths we have ordered numbers to 20, counted out objects to 20, wrote numbers to 20 and verbally counted up and back. Quite a lot of children found counting back from 20 a bit tricky so please work on this at home, it will really help!
In Phonics we have been recapping phase 2 and phase 3 phonemes. We have also went over how to segment and blend words.
On Friday the children made the sandwich for their adventures. They carefully spread their bread and selected their ingredients. The best part was eating it of course. Most children gave themselves outstanding reviews with many claiming it was "delicious", "the best sandwich ever!" and " mmmmmmm!"