Voyage Of Discovery
Nursery Children Came, They Saw, They Conkered!
The weather this week has turned from glorious sunshine to feeling distinctly chilly and autumnal. As always, though, the children have embraced the change of season and we have spent a lot of time outside investigating the changes that are evident now we have moved from summer to autumn. The youngsters headed out into the school grounds to see what natural resources they could find – and the children were so excited to discover heaps of acorns under our beloved ‘grandfather’ tree. Buoyed by their discovery, they moved on to find beautiful, shiny, mahogany conkers in their spiky green cases. But the resourceful children soon worked out exactly how to break into them and their faces lit up as if they had found treasure! We took all our nature findings back to the classroom to investigate more: How do they grow? When did they fall from the tree? What will happen to the leaves on the trees? Back in their own Nursery garden, the children loved planting, watering and watching their produce grow in their vegetable patch. They especially liked picking, chopping, cooking and then, of course, eating what they had made at snack time. They really are so proud of what they have helped produce and this week they picked some of the tomatoes that we have grown, carefully choosing the glossy red ones which we then turned into delicious cheese and tomato turnovers.
Kerry Chapman, Nursery Class Teacher
Reception Children’s Skills Put To The Test In PE
Throughout the school day, the Reception children think about which learning muscles they are using in order to achieve one of Brookham’s golden rules – being the best that they can be. The activities in the weekly PE lessons give these young learners the opportunity to develop their core strength and build upon their fine motor skills, but they also identify and work on stretching a number of their learning muscles. Under the careful guidance of Mrs Oecken, the well-planned sessions challenge the children in many areas. When rolling a ball to a partner, the focus is on collaboration in order to achieve the end goal of keeping it within the ‘goalposts’ created by their legs. In order to develop their fine motor skills, which is instrumental in the writing process, a challenge was given of putting a pom pom on a cone with tweezers which required resilience, focus and perseverance. Undeterred by the tricky challenge, a combination of little fingers and core strength helped them to succeed. The final task of climbing up and over an A frame was a little nerve-wracking for some of the children, but having stretched their relating learning muscles when listening to the instructions of best practice, huge grins and shrieks of delight were heard as they clambered safely over the top and landed securely on the mat.
Georgie Hunter, Head of Reception
Maths Really Adding Up For Resourceful Year 1
It has all been about the wonderful language of maths in Year 1 this week. We have become experts at using this week’s stem sentences when discussing our learning and we have been using the following vocabulary when comparing numerical values – ”is less than”, ”is greater than” and ”is equal to”. The children have also been learning how to use the symbols that represent these terms. Number tracks have been useful for the children to see that smaller numbers are to the left of greater numbers and we have used concrete resources to make towers in order for us to see clearly which number is greater. The children’s focus in our maths lessons this week clearly shows what resilient learners they are becoming; managing distractions is not easy but Year 1 are showing determination to master this important learning habit. This week, the children have also been helping our Superhero Elliot find a lion that had escaped from a zoo. They eagerly wrote posters to help find him and then, after several sightings in the woods, the children wrote to the zoo to let them know he was here hiding in the school grounds. Year 1 finished the week with a wonderful open classroom afternoon, inviting our visitors to help us with our clay creations.
Kerri Wilkes, Year 1 Class Teacher
It’s All Greek To Me But Not To Year 2!
This week, Year 2 have spoken Greek, learnt about the importance of the Italian flag and been fortunate to listen to stories in Spanish. To mark European Day of Languages, Year 2 invited Nicola Hall to visit with her prize pooch, and star of her line of books, Hudson the dog. Nicola has been very fortunate to have achieved so much in her life and one of her achievements has been the chance to publish her own set of books for children. She has had the books translated into French and Spanish, allowing the children to share, listen and read all about the adventures her dog, Hudson, had been on. The children loved having little Hudson visit, jumping at the chance to take some pictures with the four-legged star. Although Year 2 had specific countries to focus on for European Day of Languages, it was lovely to share and hear a variety of words and phrases in a number of different languages. With Hudson and Nicola, the children learnt a range of Spanish foods that Hudson loved to eat as a puppy and the days of the week. We’re very grateful to Hudson, and Nicola, for taking the time to come in and read to us. The special visit inspired an array of children to write down some lovely ideas of their own and illustrate their work. Gracias, merci, grazie and efcharistó to all.
Charlie Millsom, Head of Year 2
Year 3 Turn Their Attention To The Wider World Around Them
Now that the Autumn term is in full swing and new routines have become established, Year 3 have started to turn their thoughts outwards to the rest of the school and to the wider world. European Day of Languages is an annual reminder to the children to value diversity and to appreciate other cultures through understanding of differences. This year, the three classes chose different countries from all over Europe to find out more about their particular language and customs. They made colourful banners and flags, shared newly-discovered traditions and learnt new greetings. Year 3 were particularly lucky to have parents come into school to read stories to them in different languages as part of a wonderfully multinational occasion. It has also been quite a week for science in Year 3. Not only have the first children from the year group been taught in the physics lab at Highfield, but they have been engaged in making fossils too. The children invited their parents into their very own fossil museum as part of the wonderful ‘open classroom’ initiative and the visiting mums and dads delighted in sharing in some fun and messy activities, armed with the cautionary note of not forgetting to bring an apron! The parents, along with the children, learned how to make fossils and, as in all good museums, the items were displayed and labelled with interesting facts about their provenance and their famous discoverers. Oh, and did I forget to mention that we were visited by Otto the pug, who fitted in wonderfully with our literacy text Pugs of the Frozen North? It’s no wonder the children already can’t wait for next week’s lessons to begin!
Stephanie Turner, Year 3 Class Teacher