Although Christmas feels a million miles away now I do have to say what a wonderful time it was for all of us in Class One.
The children were so full of excitement and enthusiasm and worked so hard to produce the lovely Christmas books. I do hope you like them, they were so proud of themselves.
The Nativity was a bit tricky this year as I had such a small class so I didn’t quite have enough actors, but with a bit of creative license we managed to put on a super Nativity that captured the story but one that the children all enjoyed taking part in. Thank you so much to all the parents for helping your child to learn songs and lines, providing costumes and coming to the actual performance. I am sure that each of you will recognise the progress that your child has made in just one term at school.
The Spring Term is now well underway. I will be consolidating the progress your child has made and now expect even more of them!
Reading and Writing skills.
The Nursery children will continue to enjoy stories, practise rhyme and listen for initial sounds and begin to look for them in our learning environment.
The Reception children will be beginning Phase 3 in Phonics. This is an intensive phase where the children rapidly learn many of the more tricky sounds and spelling patterns. The children were so excited to be given spellings to learn this week!
We will be continuing our weekly handwriting practice. For the Reception children, this will incorporate large scale letter formation using writing wands or ribbons, making letter shapes in sand trays, paint or water and the more traditional practice of correctly forming the letters on paper. The children are beginning to write their own sentences, something we very much encourage. Let your child sound out each word and encourage them to write the sounds that match their spoken words. Please do not correct spelling mistakes at this stage as this will discourage them from wanting to write.
Year 1 children will continue with the handwriting sheets. We are really focussing on correct letter formation. Once we have written a sentence I want the children to carefully read that sentence checking for correct punctuation and look carefully at each word and check that it is spelt correctly. This is something we do every day in school and they are getting quite good at it!
We are nearly at the end of Phase 5 in phonics and once this phase is complete I will assess each child. As this phase contains the most to learn I have timetabled time for consolidation and will be able to target specific gaps as and when necessary.
As this term is such a short one I have planned for 2 topics; Hot and Cold places and after half term we shall be looking at Colour and Patterns.
We are very much committed to reintroducing Forest School activities which will take place once a week, usually on a morning. Please ensure that your child has waterproof/spare trousers, a warm coat and wellies in school at all times for these and other exciting outdoor learning opportunities.
As a guide, this term we will be learning about:
In Geography we will be looking at weather around the world, and investigating where the hot and cold places are! We will be paying particular attention to all things Penguin! In History we will be finding out all about Sir David Attenborough and Scott of the Antarctic. In Design and Technology we are looking at textiles and have a ‘felting’ workshop booked in for the children. In PSHE we will be looking at Fairtrade cocoa, and staying safe in the home. In RE we will learn about Easter and aspects of Islam. In Computing we will be making E cards. In Art we will look at African prints, colours and patterns. In Science we will investigate how green plants grow; identifying seeds and bulbs, garden plants and trees. We will label a simple flowering plant. In PE we will focus on multi skills, team games and football. In Music we will learn new songs, add actions and keep rhythm. We will look at tolerance and respect in British Value
I think you will agree that this is quite a lot to fit into 10 weeks at school!
Homework and Reading.
All Reception children now have a reading book, which I aim to change every day. We really value your comments and would ask that when you share a book with your child that you write a comment in the reading records for us. Ideally I would like the children to share their book with an adult every night, this should take no longer than 5 or 10 minutes. The Reception children need lots of help to sound out the words and then blend (squeeze) the sounds together to make the words.
During the next few weeks I will be introducing some simple homework for the Reception children (in addition to their spellings to learn). This may be phonics related, topic related or something that is of interest to your particular child. If your child does not want to do the homework, please do not force them to complete it, send it back to school and we will find time to do it during the day. I do appreciate how tired the children get and I do not want to turn the children off learning, especially as I have such an enthusiastic bunch! The Year 1 children are well into the routine of weekly homework and spellings to learn. You will notice that the level of challenge in the homework will increase.
Class One will have Football/Multi skills with Rowan each Friday afternoon. Please ensure that your child has suitable outdoor PE kit and trainers in school.
We try to keep parents as fully informed about school, visits and anything extra happening in school via school letters. Some parents already have these delivered by email. If anyone would prefer to receive all possible letters this way, please send in your details to the school office. There will of course be occasions when we do not have an electronic version to send and so these will be sent home via your child.
Mrs Evans, Miss Simpson and I are always available for a chat at the start or the end of any day and we would urge you to come in and see us at your earliest convenience should you have any concerns, or questions about what is happening at school.
I am really looking forward to meeting up with you at the forthcoming Parents’ Evening, Monday 21st January. You will have the opportunity to look at some of your child’s work and have a 10-minute confidential appointment with me.
I would like to thank everyone for their support during the first term, the Christmas gifts and kind messages sent in cards were very much appreciated. I am sure that the Spring Term will be just as much fun for the children and the staff!