A Celebration of Home Learning

Class 1 | Class 2 | Class 3 | Class 4

Date: Friday, 10th July 2020

Class 1

It has been another fabulous week for the children in reception. Although unfortunately we’re not together at school anymore nevertheless the fun has certainly not stopped for us! We dug deep into history this week with our mini dinosaur project – a topic I know has always grabbed the children’s interest and curiosity!

I have loved seeing the children’s creativity shine through as well as their extensive knowledge about so many different types of dinosaurs; from the T- Rex to the Stegosaurus, the fact files I have seen have been fantastic. It has been lovely to see the children explore more non-fiction books and resources alongside some favourite fictitious dinosaur tales too!

A very cheeky story assisted us in our maths learning this week, ‘The Dinosaur that Pooped a Planet’! What a fun and cheeky story! I know how popular that would have been amongst our cheeky monkeys! The children have enjoyed a wide range of numeracy challenges ranging from numbers, to shapes and measurements, all with added creativity challenges too! Well done everyone!

Through our mini project there have been many opportunities for children to show off their talents in many different subject areas! I hope you’ve all enjoyed it! Making salt dough dinosaur bones and fossils was certainly a messy but favourite challenge of mine! The children have had plenty of chance to explore a variety of dinosaurs, creating their own skeleton sketches for their neighbours to enjoy I’m sure! I hope you’ve had fun everyone!

Thank you to Miss Patchett too for our D&T whole school project. I am sure, just like me, lots of you were pleasantly surprised by the history of your houses and they were such interesting stories to hear! Fantastic design work by you all and, as always, original, and creative results– well done!

Our week ended with a wonderful assembly time and it was so lovely to see so many of our class there, thank you for coming along everyone. We enjoyed our dinosaur themed story with the lovely Maria before sharing some wonderful facts about dinosaurs – I am blown away by your knowledge everyone – great work!

Well done everyone for being committed and positive, as always, to the home learning challenges and it has been an absolute pleasure to see and hear of all the fun you’ve been getting up to! I wonder what next week will bring. How exciting!

Lots of love, Miss Davies

Class 2

So it is with a heavy heart that I write, as this week was the last with the Year 2 children of 2019-20. I feel a little cheated as my time spent with this amazing little group of children was cut short this year. Each and every one of you has wowed me, made me think and made me smile. Each of your individual personalities combines to make a unique, bubbly, friendly and simply delightful group of children to be with. Mrs Tart has realised this week how lucky she is to be having you has her Year 3’s in September.

Over the past week, we have created ‘Little Books of __’ I asked the children in school and at home to choose something they were interested in and to create a ‘Little Book’ made from one piece of paper and one cut of the scissors! We’ve had books about football, rabbits and even the 'Little Book of I Don't Know'!.

In our class text we read about the weird and wonderful ‘Land of What you Want’. As the title suggests, in this land you can find and have whatever you want. I asked Class 2 to think about what they would want from this land and to justify it. At school this led to many interesting and thought provoking discussions about the things that are important in life and what truly brings you happiness.

In our maths lessons in school, we have been doing investigations this week. We have found that often it is really helpful to draw or write our ideas and working out down. We have been trying to work systematically to ensure we find all the answers available. Year 1s at home have been thinking about fractions and learning about half and quarter. I also challenged you all to beat your own scores in Hit the Button and using TT Rock stars practising your basic arithmetic skills.

I hope some of you managed a have a go at the music activity this week, exploring the different layers of music. Many of you love music – I see you come alive in Music lessons by moving and dancing and singing along. What a musical bunch you are!

At school this week, we have tried to get out and about as much as possible. We did a treasure hunt at forest school (Did you find all the items on the list at home?), we went to the cricket pitch and had an afternoon of fun and laughter and games and we have had lots of play times simply being happy to be with our friends! I hope you managed to get out and about this week at home with your family.

So, finally ‘Thank you’ Class 2 for being wonderful. Year 2's - You are a group of children full of enthusiasm, energy and positivity. You are clever, fun, focused and all that a teacher could want in a class. I will miss you all and will forever feel a bit sad about the time lost together. Year 1's - you make me smile with your funny games and ideas . You are strong willed, enthusiastic and you have a fantastic energy - I look forward to all of our classroom adventures next year.

Take care all and enjoy your weekend.

Miss Patchett.

Class 3

Thank you so much to all of you who joined us at our assembly last week and for reading your thoughts and poems. The topic of our assembly was ‘resilience’ and this is a quality that you have all been using during your time at home. You have all dug deep and found your true grit. This week it was so wonderful to be able to spend some time with lots of the year 4’s, they truly are a fun-loving, hardworking and resilient group of children.

This week’s lessons have taken you on a virtual journey meeting Artist Emma Majury who demonstrated how to print Egyptian hieroglyphs using foam, potatoes, card and impressed clay to create different effects and colour combinations. Your examples are stunning! The poet Joseph Coelho inspired you to write using figurative and descriptive language to write your own poems. Your work on the ‘Lost Words’ has once again amazed me, it is full of empathy with nature and your natural surroundings. They are such beautiful words that describe a lot of what is around us. It is so important that we don’t overlook these amazing words.

You have all thought carefully about the different elements and the design, layout and materials you needed for your game. The facts about the plants and animals threats to the natural world have helped you to collect lost words and show why they shouldn’t be forgotten.

I am looking forward to some normality returning to school in September so we can carry out some of the things that make Eastnor such a special place to learn. One of these is the debating competition. Reading your debates about the dandelion and whether it is a weed or a flower, has certainly shown that we will have a very strong debating team.

I always think it is a little harder for you to carry out mathematics at home and show the great flair you all do in English, but how wrong can I be? You are all challenging yourselves completing the activities on TT Rockstars and practising your times tables, whilst working so hard on your daily lessons and completing the activities. You are constantly using your Christian values including wisdom and compassion.

Over the past 3 months we have spent a lot of time inside our homes and, when I first read the whole school D&T project set by Miss Patchett, I wasn’t sure I would be able to describe what the outside of my home looks like. But I think what has become very important are all the people in our homes and the ways in which we need to look after each other, whilst showing the world respect and compassion.

Keep safe and happy.

Lots of love, Mrs Tart

Class 4

It seems remarkable to be sat here during the penultimate week of the school year. I don’t think anyone could ever have predicted back in March that our time together as Class 4 was about to change so dramatically. I remember standing with Miss Watson in the middle of the classroom on the last day we were ‘open’. Things felt very strange as we both reassured the children who were with us that we probably wouldn’t be separated for very long.

When we reflect on the last few months, we realise that our lives have been affected in so many ways and the phrase ‘turned upside down’ feels very apt. Adults and children alike have had to adapt to a new way of being. New skills have been learnt, by young and old, and characteristics such as patience, kindness and tolerance have never been more important.

We adjusted to spending huge amounts of time together in our homes during ‘lockdown’ and coped with being separated from extended family members and friends, whilst worrying about symptoms and how to stay safe. One thing that united us all was the knowledge that everyone was ‘in the same boat’ and that we all had a friend who we could talk to about it and who would understand us.

A large proportion of our work in school, quite rightly, focuses on the children’s personal, social and health development. Friendships and being friendly has been vital during the global pandemic and this has been a key theme running through our weekly class assemblies. Feelings of loneliness are born from isolation and each week we have explored different reasons why people may become isolated and how we can help to bring change. One of the positives arising from the global pandemic has been the tremendous rise in charitable acts with adults, and children, reaching out to others who need help.

Recently, I finally agreed to buy Libby a mobile phone. Any worries or concerns I had were overridden by the benefits I realised she gained from being able to speak to her Year 6 friends when she wanted to. Listening to the giggle and chat, I was so grateful that she had such caring friends to keep things ‘normal’ for her. Delivering our weekly assemblies has also given me the same reassuring feelings, as adults and children share together their experiences. Maintaining contact with our friends, whether it be in person or through a screen, is vital for our mental wellbeing.

I am so incredibly proud of the children in Class 4, as they have stayed in touch with friends regularly throughout the pandemic, and thankful to their parents who have enabled this. Being a teacher has always felt a huge privilege to me, for you become almost like a ‘second mum’ to the children in your class. Knowing that a child has someone that they can talk, smile, laugh and confide in provides reassurance for every parent. I couldn’t be prouder of Class 4 and the friendships they have forged over the years. Our class assembly this week was a fitting tribute and celebration of the friendships the children, and I, are fortunate to have made at Eastnor Primary School.

“You have been my friend,” replied Charlotte. “That in itself is a tremendous thing.” E.B.White, Charlotte’s Web