Date: Friday, 26th June 2020
It was great to see some more sunshine this week and it certainly kept us all smiling in Reception Class. It has been another fabulous and fun filled week with all the children both at home and school – thank you for sharing your home schooling adventures.
In English this week, we started a new Oliver Jeffers’ book called ‘Here We Are’ – a very thought-provoking tale about the wonders of the world around us and growing a sense of care and responsibility for our planet. The children shared some truly inspirational, creative and thoughtful ideas and questions leaving all the adults filled with love and pride at their approaches to caring for the world and one another. How lucky we are children! All children have enjoyed sharing and exploring different parts of the world: land, sea, sky and even space (that was definitely a favourite!). The children have loved learning about different planets in our solar system and we couldn’t resist creating our own planets. There were some very creative and wacky ideas – I love them, well done! The children finished the week thinking about and celebrating diversity. Although we may live in a very small, secluded part of the world, it was a pleasure to hear and see that the children had very open minds and hearts to different ways of life – well done everyone! The children also continue to work hard on key phonics, spelling and handwriting skills – keep it up!
Things got very practical in Maths this week and we consolidated and stretched our learning in measuring weights. Everyone was able to use correct terminology and certainly knew how to use the scales… maybe that’s linked to all the baking they like to do! We have also continued to work hard on place value and number, including ordering teen numbers and all sorts of numbers across 0-100 – excellent knowledge!
We had great fun with our Wildlife trust 30 days of wild in June challenges this week – ranging from meditation in the woods (Miss Davies’ favourite) to drawing wild imaginative landscapes on top of an Eastnor hill. We even made some wonderful nature mobiles which we couldn’t resist hanging from our special spots in the classroom. They look fab and I am proud of how dedicated the children all were during the task – well done! Thank you to Mrs Tart for her whole school computing challenge. Taking photographs has always been popular with the children in reception, they do love a good selfie. However, linking with our 30 days of wild challenges we enjoyed capturing close ups of the awe and wonder all around us.
Thank you to Mrs Farnell for a lovely story time at this week’s Zoom assembly. During this time it has been wonderful for the children to spend some time with Mrs Farnell and they have certainly grown very fond of her! There was lovely listening and chatting as always on zoom – a lovely Friday morning treat!
Lots of love to you all!
This week has been all about exploring!! During last Friday’s Zoom assembly, we shared ‘Meerkat Mail’, a beautiful story of a meerkat who gets fed up of his home and goes exploring looking for another place to live. After trying out different homes, he eventually finds himself back at home realising it is the perfect place to live after all – there’s no place like home! Similarly, in our class text, the main characters are always exploring different fantastical lands.
So we have had exploring as a theme this week. For English, I asked you to choose a destination anywhere in the world. I would always choose a hot country because I love sunny weather. I wonder where you all chose to adventure to. One English task was to write about what you need to pack and why. I know many of you managed to use conjunctions in your sentences to explain your reasoning for packing what you did. Well done! Some of you also managed to learn about your destination and described it really well using your senses to create a feeling of what each place was like.
Hopefully, you will have watched the short video about Christopher Columbus. He was an Italian explorer who completed four voyages across the Atlantic over 500 years ago. Can you remember where the Atlantic Ocean was from our work on oceans a few weeks ago? It was the ocean that Paddington crossed too, to travel from Peru to Britain. If you can’t remember where it is, look at your map again. Can you imagine what it would have been like trying to travel so far such a long time ago? Did you find out the name Of Christopher Columbus’ ships? Do you think what he did was a good thing or not?
Have you managed to get out and about exploring this week? The weather has been a bit hot for exploring, but hopefully you still managed to do a bit! At school, we made ourselves a pair of binoculars to take out each day and explore a different area. Once we got there, we described the place where we were, comparing it each day to the places we had been to before. We thought about how each place was similar or different and then took time to explore the area to see what we could find.
I sent a PowerPoint about the origins of music around the world. Which one did you choose and find out more about? We are going to get the musical instruments out at school next week to have a go at drumming along to the African drumming music. Perhaps you could make yourself a drum at home from junk and have a go at drumming too!
Thank you to those of you who have sent in your pictures of your special lockdown person. They are lovely and have made the teachers smile. Well done to all of you who took part.
Have a good weekend and I hope the sun keeps shining for you.
Thank you so much to all of you who have been sending work through and who joined us at our assembly last week, you are all astounding me with your commitment. Last week we focussed on a story about Harold the Giraffe and his friends, Derek the Penguin and Kiki the Kangaroo who showed us how to care for our grandparents. This is always important, but even more so at the moment. I know lots of you have been meeting up with your extended families, the picture of Oscar meeting up with his Grandma after not seeing her for a long time really summed up how we all feel when we are reunited with people who are special to us. The photographic challenge image this week has really helped us all to think of the people who are ‘Special’ to us during these unprecedented times.
Your written work this week was based on our class text, ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’; you have sent some great fictitious diary entries from the point of view of the characters in the play describing how Bottom has returned to his job as a weaver but had dreams of being a professional actor and how he achieved this. You have written about Titania discovering that she has a most unusual power and the effect it has on those around her. Well done!
You have all really used your imagination when researching The Tudor times and the tradesmen in the company of actors whose jobs were common in Shakespeare’s day: weaver, tailor, bellows-mender, carpenter, and joiner. What great ways you have presented your work, including animations and model making.
I love to hear which books you are reading and the synopses of your favourite books you have read recently certainly didn’t disappoint. You have thought carefully about why you liked them and backed up your opinions with evidence from the text.
The quality of the online lessons that are available, after all these weeks, amazes me and the super lesson this week about maps taught by David Attenborough was no exception -what a legend he is!
I love logging on to see your results from completing the activities on TT Rockstars and the progress you are all making, this will help you with all aspects of your maths work in the future.
I am so looking forward to seeing some of you in school in the next few weeks and look forward to making more fun-filled memories with each and every one of you. Just keep believing in yourselves and remember to care for others, but also care for yourself. You are all very ‘Special’ to me.
Lots of love
During the early weeks of the Coronavirus pandemic, many children in Class 4 (like others around the UK) painted and drew rainbows to symbolise a sense of collective hope and to thank the nurses, doctors and carers for their hard work and dedication. We had two taped to our windows and it connected us to the people who walked and cycled by our floating home, sharing our national sense of pride in the NHS with strangers. Similarly, on Thursday nights, like so many other Eastnor families, we stood proudly and clapped for the key workers who were on the frontlines of the crisis.
As our country gradually eases out of lockdown, it is important to remember that through simple acts such as painting rainbows and clapping, children have been exposed to compassion and empathy for others. Kindness starts with a capacity to identify with others, putting yourself in their shoes and appreciating them. Children will be aware of many stories of kindness and heroism during the pandemic and some have even been actively participating in raising funds and delivering food parcels. Never has it been more necessary to highlight the importance of being kind with our children and how we can help others (as well as ourselves) when we are feeling angry, frustrated or sad.
This week part of our work celebrated World Wellbeing Week in Class 4, which is now in its second year. I asked the children to watch a very special assembly (led by HRH the Duchess of Cambridge on the Oak National Academy website) with the theme of mental wellbeing and kindness. I also invited them to watch a series of videos on BBC Bitesize in which children discuss what they (and others) do to help when they are feeling angry. In our last two class assemblies I have discussed the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement which has been in the news recently. Listening to and supporting one another are kind acts and we can all aim to be kinder and more understanding of the challenges other people experience. This remained a key theme in our assembly today.
Times are still certainly different and it felt very strange to set two of the English tasks this week which we always do together in school at this time of year. The Year 6 children were asked to write about their memories of being at Eastnor school. I am sure that it was a challenging task in many ways, as it can evoke a whole range of emotions in the children as they put pen to paper. I also asked Class 4 children to write a letter to a new Reception child joining Eastnor School in September. They had to reflect on the special things we do as well as the ‘usual’ daily routines. Having seen some of the pieces of work, I know that the children have captured what makes our school community such a special place to be part of. And the Year 5 children will return in September with Miss Watson and Mrs Young, ready to display acts of kindness every day to help the Reception children settle in to their new school life. The youngest children in school will certainly be in very safe, kind hands.