Date: Friday, 24th April 2020
During these very unique times, I am frequently reminded about how incredible the children in Reception Class are. Their smiley messages, photos and videos have kept me smiling this week and have helped to remind me to live in the moment, and make the best of this situation.
This week saw the start of a new author focus in our English learning, Oliver Jeffers. I know many of his books will be very popular with the class, especially as he adds so much cheekiness and humour throughout his stories- especially in this week’s book ‘The Day the Crayons Came Home’.
The children have enjoyed showing off their great comprehension skills as well as creating their own remedies for different crayon characters that have had a few bumps and mishaps along the way. Esteban the magnificent is my firm favourite- what a great name! The children continue to work hard on their correct letter formation as well as their weekly phonics work – all essential skills to practise during this time. Well done children! You’re all doing so well!
In our Maths learning this week, we have focused in on ‘Time’- I wonder how many of you have had Mr Wolf wanting to play a time game with you? There’s still time to play it if not! The children have created their own clocks, learnt about the minutes and hour hands and what they mean before beginning to tell simple times. Similarly to their English work, the children continue to develop correct formation with their numbers. Alongside this the children have worked on some brilliant place value work, counting in 2s, 5s and 10s. Well done!
The Forest School project seems to have been a great success with the children in Reception, especially the peanut butter bird feeder. What a great idea Miss Patchett! It’s been great to see children’s creativity and kindness towards nature and animals shine through. Being able to get out into the sunshine certainly does help the days to go more quickly!
Thank you for sharing all your special moments with me this week, I am missing you all hugely and am very much looking forward to when we can all be together again! Let’s keep our fingers crossed that day will come sooner rather than later.
Also, a huge well done and thank you to all the parents in Class 1, your commitment and creativity with the learning has been brilliant – you are all doing an amazing job at supporting your children with the activities. Please remember I am here should you need any support with anything.
Keep smiling everyone! Take care and keep safe!
What a beautiful, sunny week we’ve had! It makes the situation all a bit more bearable to be able to take breaks from work in the garden! Also, I hope you’ve been taking advantage of the sunny weather and have had a go at the Forest School activity and been out looking for birds and signs of Spring in your garden. I was thinking about our Forest School site this week and imagining all those weeds and nettles becoming very overgrown without us there! We will have a big job on our hands when we eventually get back there!!
Have you had chance to find out about the author of our class text, Enid Blyton? Her books have been around for a long time now with the first one published in 1922. I used to read her books when I was younger and I know many Eastnor parents did too. My favourites were her ‘Famous Five’ books full of adventure and mystery!! What did you find out about Enid Blyton?
I hope you have enjoyed learning Maths with the ‘White Rose’ videos and questions. Remember, if they are too easy or too hard, parents can help you or pose some tricky questions for you too!
The BBC daily lessons are fantastic too – you can pick and choose what you would like to learn about together at home. I have had a few emails and photographs sent through of you enjoying the online learning activities including art activities and science experiments.
Lots of you are doing home baking. This is a fantastic cross curricular activity to do. Read the instructions and look at the layout. We have learnt about the structure of instructions in school talking about sub headings, numbers for ordering, time connectives and command sentences – can you spot them in your recipes? Use your maths skills for weighing and setting the time for cooking. Talk about how the heat changes the mixture for some science and then taste and evaluate for a bit of DT!! I’d love to hear more about your yummy creations when you do some cooking!
How is your fitness going? I know you are finding lots of ways to keep active and moving. I have seen pictures of bike riding, trampolining, walking, football and Joe Wicks fitness too. In our house we have a press up challenge going! We have to try and do at least one more each day!! I am useless at them but am now up to 26 a day!!!
Well done to you all for keeping yourselves so busy and active with a range of different activities. Enjoy the sunshine and spending time with your families.
How lovely to keep receiving all your emails and photos showing me what you have been doing. What a lot of great activities and adventures you have enjoyed over the Easter holidays! You have all made a really good start to our new summer term, with our new class text. You have two this term as they are both quite short. The first one, ‘Survivor: Escape from Pompeii’ by Jim Eldridge, tells the story of a young boy fleeing Pompeii as Mount Vesuvius erupts. I actually could imagine what it would have been like from the description and the language used. We will also be looking at a play by William Shakespeare called ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. This is a wonderful play and has such interesting characters to learn about. I hope you have enjoyed the BBC Live lessons this week that I recommended, let me know which you enjoyed the most. I will recommend some more next week, but feel free to try as many as you would like to. They made me think of our lessons in school when we are acting out certain scenarios and having fun with our work.
You have made some great bird feeders this week; it is surprising how many birds you can hear singing every morning in this lovely Spring sunshine. Let me know what kinds you have spotted in your gardens or out and about and we can see if there are more in certain areas.
Has anybody tried any new skills or activities since you have been at home? As most of you know I am a very keen gardener but I don’t always do things correctly (such as planting things at the wrong time or the wrong position) but I have been reading up about it and hopefully this will help me to become more successful in watch actually grows. If you have been learning something new I would love to hear about it.
How are your menus coming along in your maths work? It made me think about all the lovely family meals we will be able to enjoy when it is safe to do so. From the photos you are sending over, it looks like we have some budding chefs in class 3. Your bakes look so tasty.
Remember to keep looking in your original learning packs as there are some lovely ideas in there for activities. Erica has been writing an author study and was a little but stuck on one of the answers. So she emailed the author - Guy Bass - and he offered Erica an e-interview! He answered her questions the very next day and even talked about her project on Twitter. How exciting is that!
I would love to hear if anyone else has tried out any of these activities.
Keep smiling everyone, you are all amazing and doing such a wonderful job. I am setting up a Zoom assembly for next week, I would love to see as many of your smiling faces as possible. I will send out details by email.
Take care and lots of love,
This week I set the children in Class 4 many different activities on the properties of shapes, compound words, posters and slogans, wellbeing and the interdependence between all living things.
Part of our work in English also focused on challenging stereotypes, as I asked the children to respond to the question: ‘Girls and boys are very different and should not have the same hobby or perform the same jobs.’ Our new core text author for the term, Sharon Creech, begins her book ‘Love That Dog’ with the words: I don’t want to because boys don’t write poetry. Girls do.
During our current situation of staying at home to stay safe, I am sure that the children have been able to see some remarkable ways that individuals are challenging stereotypes every day in our country. For example, who would have thought that a 99-year-old grandfather could raise in excess of 17million by completing 100 laps around his garden? We stereotypically think that the older you become, the less impact you can have on our society and the well-being of others. In fact, we tend to have the view that with age comes more dependence and reliance on our society, but WW2 veteran Captain Tom Moore - and others like him tirelessly fundraising around the country - have smashed that belief! Similarly, nurses and doctors who have come out of retirement to perform jobs that traditionally they had perhaps been deemed too old for and are now saving lives in hospitals around us in extremely challenging situations.
This week I also read part of ‘Hetty Feather’ by Jacqueline Wilson to the children in class 4. The story focuses on the feeling of separation, something we are all experiencing right now as we are separated from our friends and family. I shared with the children how during the 19th Century, mothers in London sometimes gave up their young babies to a place called the Foundling Hospital, where they were schooled and taught skills to enable them to earn a living. Hetty learns in the story to be resilient, determined and optimistic as she grows up, as well as to see the importance of becoming familiar with new routines, talking to those around her and kind gestures. These messages are all too relevant to our current situation as we are adjusting to a new way of living, but I know that the children in Class 4 are equipped (like Hetty) with a great sense of humour, positivity and a kind heart, which are sure to see them and their families through. In fact, the children are all writing their own pages in History right now and (judging by the emails and photographs I’ve received) it is bound to be quite a read!