Here Comes The Science Bit…
Mums And Dads Drop In To Nursery To Cap A Wonderful Week
What a hive of activity it’s been in Nursery again this week, with our favourite term of the year now well under way. The Summer Term presents so many opportunities for outside learning and our energetic youngsters have been enjoying plenty of physical activity in the garden, on the playing fields and at Forest School. Some new bike ramps encouraged the children to be resourceful and resilient as they explored them on balance bikes, while on the running track practice for the Early Years sports day in June is now in full swing. The fine weather also meant outdoor ballet was an opportunity not to be missed and the children took the chance to explore the theme of nature and growth, re-enacting in dance the life cycle of dandelions. Meanwhile, back in the classroom, the children explored the theme of friendship and made wonderful heart-shaped decorations, fittingly scribed with their friends’ names and reasons why they are so special. These now hang proudly from our ‘friendship tree’. The Nursery children also learnt all about the Muslim celebration of Eid al Fitr, which took place at the start of the week, and made decorations and star-shaped biscuits in honour of the occasion. But despite having an incredibly busy and fulfilling week, the undoubted highlight was when the children welcomed their parents into the school to share with them some of their favourite learning activities.
Sam Forster, Head of Nursery
Reception Children Make The Link Between Dance And Learning
Dance is an art form but to dance is also intrinsically human and something that the Reception children thoroughly enjoy on a weekly basis, both during child-initiated learning time and in their ballet lessons. The weekly lessons are expertly taught by Mrs Oecken, who begins every session with a warm up to prepare the little bodies for the session ahead. Ballet helps the children think about their core strength, something which is vital in developing the children’s ability to hold their position while moving their body in an outward motion. The development of core strength helps with gross and fine motor skills, stability and balance. This, in turn, affects their ability to coordinate more refined movements which are repeated in every session so that the moves can be perfected and developed further. While refining their moves, the children are being reflective learners, adapting and thinking about how their performance can be improved while also taking advice from their supportive audience. So, while ballet takes place during one session per week, the skills developed in these sessions aid the children in their learning across the curriculum.
Georgie Hunter, Head of Reception
Active Year 1 Developing In So Many Ways
Our active little learners in Year 1 are always developing their fundamental movement skills. During Games and PE lessons, weekly swimming lessons or just enjoying the play equipment at break time, they constantly have the opportunity to develop these important gross or fine motor skills. It isn’t just the children’s healthy growth and development leading to strong hearts, muscles and bones that benefit from this movement, it’s a wealth of other physical, social and moral aspects of development too. During their Games session this week the children worked collaboratively in groups and pairs to improve their striking and fielding skills in ball sports. Perhaps what was not so obvious was having to navigate complex social situations, show leadership qualities and engage self-discipline. At playtime, the children set themselves challenges on the adventure trail equipment without realising that they are improving their balance, coordination, motor sequencing skills and, most importantly, how to manage risk.
Kerri Wilkes, Year 1 Teacher
Green-fingered Year 2 Get Busy In The Garden
As the warmer weather is now upon us, Year 2 have relished the opportunity to become green fingered. With their science learning focusing on plants and growth, the children are enjoying getting closer to nature and have successfully collaborated to prepare their raised bed ready for planting. After removing the protective tarpaulin, the children were quick to spot a variety of animals who had adopted this micro-habitat as their home during the colder months. This provided an ideal throwback to their learning from the Autumn Term where the children were able to reflect on their understanding as to why the likes of toads, slugs and spiders had chosen this particular habitat. But they quickly realised it was tiring work; perseverance with the weeding ensued and the job of digging up larger roots using a fork or a trowel to loosen the soil around it proved challenging. Undaunted, the children were then tasked with covering the bed with compost, watering it and, finally, planting their courgette seeds. And the repotting of tomato seedlings to keep in the greenhouse prompted a discussion as to why certain plants thrive on being kept indoors at this time of year. Over the coming weeks, the children will have the opportunity to observe the plants’ growth by monitoring and measuring them before harvesting them in time for our Roman feast towards the end of term.
Henrietta Platt, Year 2 Class Teacher
Year 3 Revel In Mill On The Brue Adventure
We did it! Year 3 have returned from a brilliant week of fun, learning and outdoor adventure at Mill on the Brue in Somerset. On Tuesday morning, at the crack of dawn, the courageous travellers boarded the coach and headed west into what proved to be a magnificent few days full of action and delight. It has been amazing to see the children walk a little taller as they proved they can meet new challenges head on, face their fears, and help each other overcome both physical and emotional obstacles. Helping each other and working as a team have been key components of the activities this week. From building parachutes and hastily providing crates for their peers as they clambered up the Create Stack to pushing and pulling each other over obstacles such as the Giant’s Toilet, navigating a kayak in a straight line, or guiding each other blindfold round hurdles, communication and collaboration have been essential. And successful runs along the zip wire wouldn’t have been possible without a team of enthusiastic participants working in relay to return the equipment to the top of the hill for the next fearless flyer. Tunnelling also had hearts racing and friends busy reassuring their peers to burrow deeper underground, and as for avoiding the shark-infested custard, thank goodness that no-one left any of their teammates behind! With so much excitement, Year 3 returned to school buzzing, exhausted and proud of their accomplishments. Many thanks to the team at Mill on the Brue for making the experience so magical and memorable.
Charlie Millsom, Head of Year 3