Grounds For Optimism
Imaginations Set Free As Nursery Take To The Great Outdoors
It’s always lovely to see how well the Nursery children use their imaginations, and our beautiful outdoor environment allows the children plenty of scope to do exactly that! This week, an impromptu ramble to the edge of the woods provided our energetic and adventurous Nursery pupils with the chance to play on some felled logs and swing on the low branches of trees. These trees soon became a pirate ship in the eyes of the children and a swashbuckling game that the children had initiated offered a wonderful opportunity for the teachers to develop the children’s language and knowledge and understanding of the wider world. As the children played together they developed their ability to relate to each other, taking turns and sharing ideas about how to extend their game. They also had great fun developing their gross motor skills and learning to assess risk as they scrambled on the logs and swung from the branches. The learning that took place was fantastic and there wasn’t a toy in sight!
Sam Forster, Head of Nursery
Party Fever Sweeps Through Reception After Wondrous Woodland Walk
This week saw a change to the winter uniform, and a noticeable change to cooler weather sparked an impromptu discussion about the seasons. In Reception, we find that our learning is best achieved first hand, so we immediately set off on an exciting autumn walk. Being out and about in the fresh air gave the children the chance to observe various changes in colour, such as the leaves on the trees, as well as an opportunity to spot and collect an array of wonderful natural materials that had fallen from the many trees in our beautiful grounds. After their successful nature trail, the children gathered round to listen to the story of Leafman, by Lois Ehlert. The story acted as a stimulus to spark the children’s imaginations and in their learning pairs they discussed what they would like to create from their natural discoveries. Our resourceful young learners collaboratively used the autumnal goodies to produce a unique collage. Their creative flare, resilience and perseverance shone through and they managed to make the most wonderful 3D pictures. As well as the woodland walk, another big highlight of the week was the preparation for our class bear’s fifth birthday – and what a birthday it was! The children weighed and mixed ingredients to make a delicious cake, got busy in the classroom writing and drawing beautiful, bright birthday cards and party invitations, and did some fantastic cutting and sticking as they made their own snazzy party hats. The excited and eager children were then delighted to celebrate with the bears at a year-group party. Happy giggles and fun were the order of the day as the children danced and played lovely party games.
Rosie Snagge, Reception Class Teacher
Practical Progress As Busy Year 1 Get Hands On
During literacy this week, Year 1 worked together to adapt the story of Eliot the Midnight Superhero by creating a new and exciting problem. The children proved they are amazing storytellers by confidently recounting the innovated story; using handmade puppets to help them. True to form, the children collaborated incredibly well; practising their story in pairs and showcasing it to the rest of the class. This retelling really helped with their writing and some children even chose to add adjectives to make their story sound even more interesting. Science was another exciting and hands-on lesson where the children got the chance to explore materials using magnets; discovering which objects in the classroom were magnetic and which were non-magnetic. They also learnt the word repel, discovering that two poles which are identical ‘push’ each other away. As part of their voyage of scientific discovery, some children also learnt that they could race the magnets on tables by repelling other magnets while some found that the magnet would twirl round and round on the table! And the learning didn’t stop there as Year 1 got to grips with number lines, which help provide a strong basis for addition and subtraction during their maths lessons. All in all, it’s been a very exciting and hands-on week in Year 1!
Rachael Berry, Year 1 Class Teacher
Year 2 Place Great Value On Working Together
The Year 2 children have this week excelled in their understanding of place value. The children have developed a solid perception of the numerical value that a digit has by virtue of its position, giving them a strong foundation to link to the four operations in maths – addition, subtraction, division and multiplication. The efforts and reasoning skills on display were brilliant to see as children worked collaboratively with their peers. This teamwork approach to learning develops high-level thinking skills and boosts the children’s confidence and self-esteem. The group activity also maximized their experience of using multi-media resources, while improving their social and interpersonal ability. The practicality of the lesson improved the group’s engagement and knowledge retention; in this instance, the knowledge of place value, ordering numbers and numbers in their written state. The children headed home for the weekend with their heads held a little higher and with a better understanding of spelling out their numbers in letters too. This allows the class to acknowledge a number and its meaning, improve their performance of mental mathematics, give them the tools to look at maths in the outside world, and continue to make comparisons with numbers. Bring on addition and subtraction, we’re ready!
Charlie Millsom, Head of Year 2
Year 3 Club Together To Grasp New Opportunities
Extra-curricular clubs are a fundamental part of daily life at school, providing an opportunity to try out new skills and nurture talent in their own familiar environment. Year 3 have jumped at the chance to learn to draw this term, following step-by-step instructions on how to draw fun and engaging animals. Downstairs in the hall, our budding actors have honed in on their performance skills in theatre club, where they are learning to project their voices clearly and succinctly. Critical thinking skills such as problem solving, abstract reasoning, pattern recognition and strategic planning are some of the many skills being developed in the popular chess club. In addition, there are many health benefits associated with drumming club, which teaches mindfulness, induces relaxation and improves personal well-being while also promoting self-expression and enjoyment. These are but a few of the many clubs on offer which allow the children to thrive and be the best they can be.
Henrietta Platt, Head of Year 3