Well done to all of the children, who have settled back into school so happily this week. It has been a pleasure to have our classrooms buzzing again. Thank you for your cooperation with the routines at each end of the day – it is much appreciated.
This week we have been learning all about our senses and how they help us to understand the world around us. We turned our noses up at smelly pots and tried to guess what they contained. Bravely, we dipped our hands into a feely box to discover objects, which the children described as soft, squidgy, spiky, rough, bumpy, hard and silky. Crayon rubbings enabled us to capture the textures of materials we found outdoors. We tried to identify our friends just by their voices and shared the story of ‘Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What do you hear?’ Our eyes were used to spot the early signs of Spring. We tested our taste buds and considered if we preferred sour, bitter, sweet or salty flavours. I wonder if your child can recall which they enjoyed best?
The children made cards to celebrate Mother’s Day. We wish all mums, step-mums, aunties and grannies a lovely day on Sunday – we hope you enjoy the portraits that the children have drawn of you.
Over the last two weeks, we have been enjoying the story of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’. First, we went on a book hunt, following clues which would help us to guess which story we would be reading. Unfortunately (but by design), our book hadn’t arrived but we learned that, with traditional tales, we don’t really need a book because they were spoken and shared long before they were written down. Even without a book, we were able to draw a story map and retell the events. The children then added actions to our story, which helped us to remember it.
Two different versions of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ finally arrived and we discussed the similarities and differences between them. Puppets were used by the children to imitate the story.
After painting scenes from the tale, we then shifted into innovation and started to change parts of the story. The wolf was replaced by a furry brown bear, who had a shiny big nose that was all the better for smelling Little Red Riding Hood with. Children then had the opportunity to change the ending of the story and decided that, when the woodcutter arrived, Big Bad Wolf jumped out of the window and went home. When he got there, the little wolf cub told his daddy off for trying to eat people. The next day, Big Bad Wolf went to Little Red Riding Hood’s house and blew on the window and wrote, ’Sorry’, with his paw in the condensation. Big Bad Wolf fixed the window and went home for tea. They ate watermelon and had coke to drink. The (new) end!
Children at home followed the story with Oak National Academy and sent in their impressive story maps and drawings.
To celebrate World Book Day, children at home and at school wore pyjamas. To start the day, we shared a fun quiz via Zoom to test our book knowledge and then we talked about our favourite books and characters.
Please may we take this opportunity to thank you for all of your support since Christmas. We are so excited that the children will be returning on Monday for our fun and learning packed Science Week.
Hopefully, by now, you will have had the opportunity to watch the children’s wonderful Nativity production. The classroom was full of Christmas activities this week. The children enjoyed reading our version of the Christmas story, which was filled with their photographs. We made paper chains and compared the lengths. We also noticed that some children had created repeating patterns in the chains. Fine motor skills were developed as we made snowflakes. Fred had been shopping online and we took a delivery, which contained parcels labelled with sounds. We guessed what might be inside; some of the parcels had far less exciting contents than the children predicted. Christmas bingo was a hit. The children added one more and one less within ten before marking off their bingo cards. I hope you get chance to play at home during the holiday.
On Friday, the children had the opportunity for a taster session with the Balbir Dance Company. It was exciting to visit our dance studio for the first time and the children particularly enjoyed pretending to eat a ping pong ball! Thank you to Mrs Johnston for arranging the visit for us and to the Balbir Dance Company.
Wishing you all a wonderful and peaceful Christmas. Thank you to the children for all of their hard work and enthusiasm this term and to the parents for all their support. I look forward to seeing you in the new year.
Thank you to Miss Archibald and William, who talked to us this week about the Jewish festival of lights – Chanukah. We learnt that the word Chanukah means ‘re-dedication’ and celebrates a great miracle. Over 2000 years ago, Jewish rituals were banned by the Greek King Antiochus. A small group of Jewish people – the Maccabees – resisted and, after a three-year war, they were victorious. To celebrate their victory, they repaired their destroyed temple and lit an oil lamp. There was only sufficient oil to enable the lamp to burn for one day but, miraculously, it burned for eight days. That is why the Chanukah festival lasts for eight days and why a Hanukiah with eight candles is symbolic in Jewish homes. Thank you to William’s mum for sharing a photo of him lighting a candle on their Hanukiah. Children receive gifts and play a special game with a spinning top called a dreidel. By eating food such as doughnuts and latkes, Jewish people remember the miracle of the oil lasting eight days.
Thank you to Miss Bramham for taking some of the children into our Forest School. They have made some wonderful Stick Men and Stick Ladies.
We have also been preparing for Christmas by sharing the Christmas story. Christmas cards and decorations are being created and the children have been helping the elves to make gifts in our very own toy factory. Cameras are seemingly in high demand this year. Today was Christmas Jumper day; thank you for your charity donations. The children also enjoyed a delicious Christmas lunch – thank you to the lunch time team.
Finally, thank you to everyone for sending in the fabulous costumes for our Nativity. We have started our recording and the children have done a wonderful job learning the songs and their lines – well done! We look forward to sharing the production with you soon.
Take a look at all of our space cadets, who took inspiration from ‘Whatever Next!’ by Jill Murphy. Thank you for sharing your wonderful adventures. I’m so glad you enjoyed your trips to space and other exciting destinations. You created some fantastic postcards and pictures to send to your friends and thought of some inventive alternative endings to the story. Well done!
There were some creative ways of practising Phonics. Ava even built a stunning ship! Great work, Ava.
Lots of sorting was enjoyed by the children – either by size, colour or quantity. And, you were able to match groups of objects to the correct numerals.
It has been wonderful to see that you have enjoyed lots of other activities too – cookery, music, jigsaws and painting – what a talented bunch you are. Emma can recommend that you try gravy with your jam roly-poly if you ever bake one!
Thank you so much to the children for all their hard work and enthusiasm over the last couple of weeks and to parents and carers, who have supported them.
So ‘Whatever Next?’ Hopefully two fun-packed weeks in the run up to Christmas.
I am very excited that I will be seeing you back in school tomorrow.
Well, it wasn’t quite the Owl Babies week that we had hoped for but I am so grateful to you for all the efforts you have made at home to ensure that the children enjoyed the activities we have sent through. We really appreciate your enthusiasm and feedback. Thank you.
The children’s art work has been so impressive. Maddie made a wonderful roost for her owl family using cardboard, sticks and feathers. Phoebe drew a detailed picture – just look at those zigzag feathers! And, she proposed that all owls be called ‘hootlings’. Eli used a range of materials to give texture to his colourful owl. Emma, too, used texture effectively to create two quite different but stunning owl models.
On ‘No Pens Wednesday’, the children were challenged to discuss the feelings of the Owl Babies. Phoebe and Eli present to us their happy, shocked, worried, hopeful and relieved expressions. Very convincing and impressive!.
There was also evidence of some wonderful repeating patterns in kitchens as the young chefs took the opportunity to produce some healthy and delicious looking food.
One of the maths activities invited the children to check a suitcase for specific numbers of items that owl had on his packing list. Take a look at what Matthew and Harry filled their suitcases with.
New YouTube stars – Mrs Willis and Mrs Johnston – have been inspiring the children with their Phonics videos. Meanwhile, Olivia looks quite rightly proud of her progress with sounding out words. Emma chose some actions as well as objects to demonstrate her learning of ‘nk’; I think my favourite is ‘stink’.
Well done and thank you, everyone. We do appreciate your support.
Our focus this week has been learning about Diwali. Mrs Ajith very kindly brought in some brand new beautiful clothes that would be worn for a Diwali celebration. Don’t the children look fantastic?
The children enjoyed discussing and then acting out the story of Rama and Sita. Warrior Prince Rama went to the rescue of Princess Sita after she was captured by the evil King Ravana. We had lots of monkeys supporting Hanuman!
Beautiful cards were made with some super cutting skills from the children. They will also be bringing home diva lamps, which they made from clay and then decorated with paint and jewels. I hope they burn brightly at home and bring you good fortune.
Some of the children have had the wonderful opportunity this week to create drawing stories with Mrs Johnston. We were all impressed by their imaginative creations.
This week, we have been enjoying a beautiful storybook – ‘Pumpkin Soup’ by Helen Cooper. Our home corner was transformed into the ‘old white cabin’ and the children created their own versions of pumpkin soup on the stove.
We took a very close look at and had a good feel of a variety of pumpkins. Pastels, water colours and charcoals were used to capture the lumpy colourful appearance of one of our favourites. Plasticine was used to make models of a more regular looking pumpkin outdoors.
When we opened up the pumpkin, we noticed the strands, seeds and pulp inside. The children used a variety of adjectives to describe how it felt when they pushed their finger inside: slimy, gooey, stringy. One of us thought it smelled ‘like cabbage’.
Today we all had the opportunity to try some pumpkin soup – fortunately made with unexplored pumpkins by Mrs Willis! We counted up how many children enjoyed the soup – most of us did.
Whilst reading the story, we discussed the feelings of the characters and the children had fun showing each other their happy, sad, scared and angry faces. I wonder if you can tell which is which!
On Wednesday, we gave thanks to the people who have worked hard in wars to keep us safe. The children created some beautiful poppies – well done!