Welcome to Willow Class. On our page you will find: exciting class news, pictures of things we've done, and activities that can be used at home to support learning further.
Our topic will still be 'Totally Tropical'. We will initially continue to look at life cycles and will focus on The Very Hungry Caterpillar and the butterfly lifecycle. We will move on to look at the species which inhabit tropical regions, culminating in our trip to Bristol Zoo on June 29th.
This term we will be focusing on continuing to develop our reading and writing. We will be using the phonics which we have learned in our work and we aim to extend our writing to sentences and short narratives/ explanations about things with which we are familiar or stories which we have shared. Please support your child to use the sounds which they know, even if the spelling is incorrect. The aim is that they should independently write their ideas. We will revisit all of the sounds covered so far and I will start to send home spellings to learn (high frequency words) after the half-term.
By the end of June, I will be making judgements about each child's attainment. I am therefore setting out the Early Learning Goals for your reference. These are the National Expectation for attainment at the end of the Foundation stage.
The Early Learning Goal for READING:
Children should be able to read and understand simple sentences. They should use phonic knowledge to decode regular words and read them aloud accurately. They should also read some common irregular words. They should demonstrate understanding when talking with others about what they have read.
The Early Learning Goal for WRITING:
Children should use their phonic knowledge to write words in ways which match their spoken sounds. They should also write some irregular common words. They should write simple sentences which can be read by themselves and others. Some words should be spelt correctly and others should be phonetically plausible.
In maths, we will consolidate our learning to date.
The Early Learning Goals for NUMBERS:
Children should be able to count reliably with numbers from one to 20, place them in order and say which number is one more or one less than a given number. Using quantities and objects, they should add and subtract two single-digit numbers and count on or back to find the answer. They should finally solve problems, including doubling, halving and sharing.
The Early Learning Goals in SHAPE, SPACE AND MEASURES:
Children should use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money. They should be able to compare quantities and objects and to solve problems. They should recognise, create and describe patterns. Finally, they should be able to explore the characteristics of everyday objects and shapes and use mathematical language to describe them.
As our learning is child-centred, the path which our learning may take is not definitively mapped out, but will respond to the interests of the children.
Have you seen the Kids' Zone? Play games, and visit some cool websites. You can vote for your favourites!
BRISTOL TRIP 29TH JUNE
Willow class enjoyed a trip to Bristol Zoo with Key Stage One.
We attended a 'Jungle Boogie' Sessions, where we able to look at, hold and touch Jungle creatures. We enjoyed looking at a range of animal artefacts and thinking about the creatures which live in these climates.
You can see from the photos that we had plenty to look at!
The following day, we released the butterflies which we have been watching in class. We enjoyed watching the caterpillars develop and it was lovely to release our Painted Lady butterflies.
This week, the children enjoyed mixing coloured water to see which new colours they could make. Miss Luxton brought in the exoskeletons shed by 2 tarantulas and explained to the children how the spiders do this.
The children were fascinated to look at the exoskeletons and many of them wanted to touch and feel what they felt like. Some of the adults were not so brave!
We have set up a shop in our role play area, which soon became a serving hatch. The children are enjoying making signs, writing shopping lists and handling money.
We have started to record subtraction sentences and the children have been eager to try this for themselves.
This week we have been practising using objects to subtract and then recording what we have done.
We also enjoyed our Inspire morning, where our parents / grandparents worked with us to create a story map for The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Our caterpillars are continuing to grow very quickly - they are VERY hungry! - and we are watching them closely.
We have been learning how to stay safe and strong. We have shared the NSPCC Pantasaurus activities. There is a link for the song here:
For our 'Totally Tropical' theme, we have started to plant seeds (sunflower) and we are looking forward to seeing how they grow over the next few weeks. We are also planning to plant more seeds over the next couple of weeks.
A Ruishton-based knitting group have very kindly made us a 'Handa's Surprise' story sack. The children have very much enjoyed sharing the story and we have started to think about drawing the characters at each stage of the story. You will see this in the photographs above.
The final 3 weeks of the spring term
During the last three weeks of the spring term, we were very busy with lots of learning activities in Willow class: we investigated materials with the new class horseshoe magnets, decorated our mod roc robots for the Exit Point, learned how to mix colours with Mrs Keene, made chocolate nests with Mrs Curry and investigated patterns, to name but a few. You can see from the above photos how busy we were!
Week commencing 6th March 2017
We have been continuing to share focus books together in groups and to follow this with supported writing. Everybody has been very hard to use the sounds which they know for reading and writing. Well done everyone!
The PTA kindly funded the purchase of some new toys which the children have been enjoying. These include a wooden building set, to encourage creativity and balancing skills. We have 2 large magnets, for investigations around the classroom and the new hoover and ironing board have been very popular in the home corner. The new play food has also been very popular and we are using the plastic money to pay for our daily snacks. Thank you to Mrs Cinicola for the long term loan of Beech Class's money and many thanks to the PTA!
Robots and 'Cracking Contraptions'
This week we have continued thinking about 'Tomorrow's World' and we have been thinking about robots and machines which may help us do household chores in the future. After watching Wallace and Grommit's Cracking Contraptions, the children enjoyed designing their own contraptions. I have included the link for this at the bottom of the page, as the children enjoyed watching the short clips!
Half of the class have started their Let's Get Cooking sessions whilst the remainder enjoyed art with Mrs Keene. They will swap in week 4, so that everybody gets the same opportunities.
We carried out a brief test to show how craters on the moon were formed by meteorites/ asteroids. We had to be careful not to drop/ throw a rock at anyone's head, but the children enjoyed predicting which rocks would make the biggest craters. They all had a go at making their own crater!
Fortnight ending 27th January 2017
We have had a very busy 2 weeks in Willow class.
We have continued to learn and practise our sounds and how to write them. We have used Numicon tiles to help us add two amounts together and to add on/back 1. We have also been ordering daily events and days of the week.
The children have been very interested in bigger numbers, and so we have been looking at numbers up to 100 using an interactive 100 square. Numbers can be identified and 'splatted' on the square, which they have really enjoyed.
This is the link for the 100 square, if you would like to try at home.
Additionally, the children have enjoyedmark-making outside, playing 'cinemas', building with the Brio materials, playing games and making dragons for Chinese New Year.
They were fascinated when they found worms living in a pot of soil outside. This prompted alot of discussion!
Welcome back to Willow class!
We have been reading the story of Dinosaurs and All That Rubbish.
In this story, a very rich and selfish man is so eager to reach a beautiful faraway star that he creates alot of pollution to build a rocket to reach the star. When he then travels to the star, it is lifeless and grey and he is bitterly disappointed. He looks into the dark sky and sees another beautiful planet and decides that he will travel there instead.
In the meantime, the actions of the man have caused the long-asleep dinosaurs to awaken and they clean up the polluted planet, restoring it to its former beauty.
When the man reaches the second planet, he believes that he has reached a paradise. He is astonished to discover that he has in fact returned to earth. He agrees with the dinosaurs to look after the planet which he previously spoiled. He understands that the planet belongs to everyone to enjoy.
We have been using dinosaurs as part of our small world outside play. We froze some dinosaurs overnight and thought about ice and melting as the day became warmer. The children also used the sand tray, natural materials and dinosaur play equipment to create a dinosaur world, both in the tuffspot and on the floor. They worked independently and creatively to build these fantastic scenes in the hoops!
In our inside role play, we have set up a space travel agency, where the children have enjoyed using the technology to 'book' holidays to a variety of planets. They also painted blue panels to create our 'tardis' (although it frequently becomes other things as well!) and they have been writing and drawing inside the tardis.
As we learn about the world around us and other beliefs and communities, we have shared the story behind the Chinese New Year celebrations and the children enjoyed colouring the animal for their birth year or the current year.
As you will see, we are working in small groups to share stories, working together to decode the text and talk about it afterwards. See if your child can retell the book which they have just read to you in their own words. Can you ask each other questions about what happened and the characters in it?
Week commencing 5th December
We have been continuing to work on naming 2D shapes and thinking about their properties. Everyone is becoming more confident in describing and sorting shapes.
We were very fortunate to have Tesco visit us on Wednesday afternoon. They brought with them some treats for us to try and we enjoyed decorating a gingerbread man each.
As the weather has been milder, the children have continued to explore and experiment with the outdoor space and the available resources. They have really enjoyed playing with the sand and incorporating it into wider role play scenarios, as you will see from the photographs.
This week, we have continued to enjoy our Dough Disco as you can see from the photos!
We have been learning how to start to record addition number sentences. We rolled a dice to find the start number and found this number on our number line. We then rolled the dice again and counted on this number using the number line. We practised this again in class using the number lines in our drawers.
Week commencing 7th November 2016
We started to take part in daily 'Dough Disco' sessions on Monday. The children have found this fun and it is a great way to warm up the writing muscles at the beginning of the day. Have a look at the pictures!
Whilst the weather is still reasonable, the children have been able to enjoy our outside play area in a variety of ways:
- We have used the scenery which we painted last week to set up a 'fairy tale palace' in our outside play area. This has proved to be very popular in developing role play scenarios;
- We have been painting and mark-making at our tri-easel;
- We have been sorting materials and practising fine motor skills using the tweezers and
- The children have enjoyed using a variety of resources (including the water trays and the large reels) to develop a number of imaginative games.
In PE, Mr Riley is working on key skills with the class in the hall and I am working on throwing, catching and gross motor movements to music (the children love dancing with the pom poms, ribbon streamers and colourful scarves!). The year 6 children kindly measured the perimeter of the large playground and so we are now completing 4 laps of the playground a day in order to achieve our 'Golden Mile' each week (photos above).
In science, we planted bulbs to see if they would grow. We have made predictions and will watch each week to see what happens.
We have been busy in Willow class again this week. We have started to use our handwriting books to help us see which letters are tall (have ascenders) and which letters go below the line (descenders). We have also started to practise writing our number lines from 0-10 and 11-20. We have continued to practise the sounds which we know and we have learned a new sound which can be written in 2 different ways - 'c' and 'k'.
We have been comparing height, weight and capacity. As you will see from the photographs, the children enjoyed predicting which container would hold the most liquid! We carried out similar tests with the balance scales and weights.
Our role play area has become a Fairy Tale Castle and the children have very much enjoyed writing invitations and party menus in the role play area. I know that some of you have practised at home, so well done! We have been painting some scenery to make our castle more interesting.
I hope that everyone enjoyed our Inspire afternoon and making your shelters. Everybody looks very busy in the photographs.
If you would like, you could try comparing heights, lengths, weights and capacity at home!
During our last week before half term, we have continued to practise blending the sounds which we know to read our first words. We counted the total number of spots which we could see on two ladybirds. We practised writing this as addition sentences.
We have looked carefully at natural objects on the light box and the seeds which Liz gave us last week have started to grow. Well done Koby for being the first to spot the shoots appearing in the soil!.
We have used the ipad minis to take photographs and we also explored some of the programming games and activities.
To help prepare for next half-term, we spent some time emptying the old sand pit and tidying up our outside area.
A Special Visitor In Willow Class
On Thursday, we welcomed Liz from Farmlink to Willow class. As you will see from the photographs, we shared the story of The Little Red Hen and thought about how wheat is grown. We also met Mary, the hen, who was very calm and didn't mind being petted by everyone!
We have continued to practise counting, number lines and number facts up to 10 and 20. We have been blending the sounds we already know (m,a,s,d,t) and learning some new sounds (i,n,p).
During our first full week in Willow class, we have been very busy and also a little tired! The children thoroughly enjoyed their first PE lesson with the sports coach, as you can see from the pictures. To help us to make PE sessions even more productive, please encourage your child to dress and undress themselves as independently as possible.
Mrs Keene worked with Willow class children on Wednesday to make birthday cards for children throughout the school. They looked great!
We have continued to work on our first group of letters (m,a,s,d,t) and we have been working on blending those sounds to read our first words. Your child can also now look carefully in their reading books to spot and use the sounds which they are currently learning. We will now continue to learn and blend a new set of sounds. It was great to see many of you at the phonics evening on Tuesday. I have sent home a copy of the first main blocks of sounds which the children will be learning. They are broken up into sets 1 and 2. As we work through the sounds, you may find it helpful to refer to this sheet. Please ask Mrs Curry or Mrs Keene if you have any queries.
In maths, we are continuing to establish a secure understanding of quantity, numerals and number order. We additionally looked at shapes in our environment and using shapes to make pictures and patterns.
During lunchtimes and play times, it has been wonderful to see many of the year 5 and 6 children help and play with the Willow class children. They are all enjoying this! I have also been very pleased and proud to see how brilliantly all of our children have settled into collective worship. They are a credit to you!
During our third week in Willow class, we have been practising writing our names and the numerals 0-9. We have been sharing books in a small group with an adult and playing in our estate agents role play area. On Wednesday, we had a special visitor who talked to us about how we used to live and the sorts of things which we used to have in our houses. We made bread as you will see in the photographs!
We have started to learn our sounds. We have been practising reading and writing 'm' and 'a'.
We have been counting amounts up to 10 and writing the numeral which we counted.
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