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Term 4, 2017 – 18
Wow, what a busy term it has been! The children have been very enthusiastic learning about ‘Coasts’ and have produced some fantastic learning throughout the term, culminating in a class trip to Chatham Dockyard. Our trip was a huge success with all the children. Our day began with exploring the RNLI lifeboat shed and finding out about the many different types of lifeboats used over the ages. Afterward we climbed aboard the Victorian sailing ship, HMS Gannet, which really helped us imagine what life on board a ship might have been like; it was a real challenge negotiating the steep ladders to climb above and below deck. After this we came to everyone’s favourite part of every school trip – lunch and the play park – followed by a visit to the newly appointed exhibition, filled with many fascinating paintings and models of a variety of different types of ships. Our final session was a workshop all about Grace Darling and her daring rescue of survivors from the shipwrecked Forfarshire in 1838. All the children and adults were involved in re-enacting events using a variety of props and sound effects, it really made us appreciate just how brave she and her father were. Then children created medals as a keepsake to remember their time at Chatham Dockyard.
On Monday 19th March, the whole school took part in a Super Science Day, ‘exploring and discovering in different ways’, as part of National Science Week. A Bubbleworks ‘Professor’ came in to share some exciting and interesting experiments with us, including creating a Coca-Cola fountain and launching a bottle rocket. In class, we found out more about animals that live in our seas and around our coasts; we thought about what they needed to be able to survive and how they were adapted to their environment, we also found out about the problems marine wildlife faces as a result of the plastic and other rubbish that ends up in the sea. We used the internet to research; carried out our own experiment to test how far cans can travel and the children were challenged to apply their learning by creating a model of a rock pool that included some of the creatures that might live there, as well as all the things that they would need to survive. They all did a terrific job, as so many of you saw when you visited our classroom at the end of the day.
In Maths this term we have been focusing on money and learning to apply our skills for adding and subtracting to solving real-life scenarios involving finding the total cost of items, as well as how to calculate what change will be given. The children are becoming more confident using a variety of strategies including, the bar model, an empty number line and written column method to help them solve problems. Moving away from using manipulatives and on to using jottings and written methods in Maths is a key part to progressing in Year 2 and helps the children prepare for Year 3, so this will continue to be a strategy we apply in the final terms as we focus on multiplication and division, reasoning and applying our knowledge to problem solve in Maths.
Next term, our topic will link with English, Science, History, Geography, PSHCE and RE through the study of environmentally themed texts, and will encourage us to consider ‘How to Make a Better World’’ for ourselves and others. I will be asking the class to take part in a series of projects to help ‘Make a Better World’.
As always, the success of this term could not be achieved without your continued support, so many thanks for all your efforts this term. I wish you all a happy and restful Easter holiday and look forward to seeing you all in Term 5.
Term 3, 2017 – 18
A short but very busy term has come to an end and once again the children have approached their learning with tremendous enthusiasm. Thank you to all those family members able to attend our Great Fire of London Exhibition on Wednesday 7th February. I think you will all agree that the children did themselves proud in their singing and their exhibits. It was wonderful to see the children proudly sharing their learning from this term’s Topic.
As part of our Topic Fire! Fire! We were lucky to have Matt and his team of firefighters visit us to teach us all about the work they do. They generously spent an hour showing us and telling us all about the equipment they use. We even got to go inside the cab of the fire engine. It made us think about how the methods for firefighting have changed since 1666, although Matt and his team said they still use buckets and beaters for small fires!
Our class text this term has been Vlad and the Great Fire of London by Kate Cunningham. The children really enjoyed reading and acting out parts of the story, imagining themselves as Vlad the Flea or Boxton the Rat. They even interviewed each other to find out more about how people felt and acted at the time of the fire. The children put together their understanding about the Great Fire of London by creating Newspaper reports and then using their computing skills to publish a version using 2Simple software.
We used our Science skills and our knowledge of Materials to help us design and make shelters for Vlad and Boxton to stay in after the bakery burnt down. We thought about what makes a good shelter. We decided they need to be strong to withstand the wind, waterproof in the rain and comfortable inside. Then we tested our shelters to see how well they fit these criteria, they did extremely well…just a few leaks and collapses!
As part of Safer Internet Day on Tuesday 6th February the class thought about the theme: Create, Connect and Show Respect, by thinking about what they love to do; what technology they use and how they have a digital footprint. We also explored how we should treat each other online by discussing how our words and actions make us feel. Take a look at some of our learning on the school website.
Once again, thank you for all your support throughout the term!
Term 2, 2017 – 2018
What a busy term it has been! The children have approached their learning with lots of energy and enthusiasm this term. Throughout our topic on Changing Communication they have tried their hands at using different methods of communication from the past. Earlier in the term they created their own carrier pigeons in papier-mâché, as well as having a go at creating their own telegrams and using Morse code to send messages. We have used our letter writing skills to create cards for the elderly this Christmas and to send our congratulations to HRH Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip on their 70th wedding anniversary. The class were very excited to receive a reply from The Palace this week, thanking us for our handmade cards. In addition to learning about past and present methods of communication, this week we have been thinking about the future and the children designed and made their own communication products for the future – we hope to display these in the reception area at the start of next term.
In Science we have been exploring different types of materials and their properties. The class have been developing their use of scientific observation skills and improving their use of scientific vocabulary by describing the properties of the various materials we have collected. They were very helpful in solving my real-life problem involving kitchen towels and a cat (Clyde) that always spills his water – I have been buying the towels the class recommended and it has helped enormously! Next term we will continue to explore materials and how their properties make them suitable for particular uses.
In the final week of term, the children excelled themselves in their performance of this year’s Nativity – The Sleepy Shepherd. As always the children tried their very best, braved their nerves and produced two fantastic performances, which we hope you enjoyed as much as we did. A huge “thank you” to all parents in helping the children to learn lines and songs as well as providing costumes, as well as finding he time to come and see each performance. Your support is very much appreciated and was a vital part of our success.
Thank you, once again, for your continued support throughout his term.
I wish you all a very Happy Christmas and all the very best for the New Year!
Term 1, 2017 – 2018
What a fantastic first term it has been! The children have settled in well to their new classroom, rules and routines. I am very proud of all the effort they have put in throughout this term.
It has been very busy this term, with the children developing their Geography skills through the topic Our Wonderful World. They have studied the different continents and oceans of the world, using maps, atlases and websites to research different continents around the world.
In Science, we have been learning about Humans and Other Animals, to enrich our learning we had a very exciting visit from the Creepy Claws team, who brought in a variety of animals to help us learn more about classification and the different animal groups. We learnt lots by looking at, touching and talking about vertebrates and invertebrates. See the great photos of the mammals, reptiles and insects that we met.
Our English learning has been based around a beautiful book called: One Night, Far From Here by Julia Wauters. This picture book reveals different habitats from around the world at different times of day, and was a big hit with the class and served as inspiration for drama, artwork, poems and first person narrative writing throughout the term.
In this last week the whole class worked together to create artwork depicting ‘It’s a Wonderful World because…’ As well as making personal pictures of what makes our world wonderful, we worked together to create a Wonderful World Tree to celebrate our world, we plan to add a variety of different decorations throughout the year to celebrate special events and moments for our class. We look forward to sharing the finished tree with you in Term 6.
Thank you to all those who were able to come in and share some of the fantastic learning that the children have done over this term, it was a lovely way to end the term.
Next term’s topic: Changing Communication will focus on History – exploring changes in technology, and in Science we will be learning about Everyday Materials.
Term 6, 2016 – 17
What an amazing final term it has been! As always the children have approached their learning with focus and enthusiasm. There is so much to celebrate from this term.
As part of our Plants and Pollinators topic the children have enjoyed learning about the plants in our local area by doing fieldwork and investigations around the school grounds. They have used Science and Maths skills to gather data and information about the flowers and trees growing around us. Our trip to Monkton Nature Reserve was a tremendous success – much fun was had by all. We were able to broaden our learning about plants and pollinators by exploring the site. We used nets to catch and identify different pollinators and we even got to stroke a slowworm.
Another highlight of the term was our trip to the music concert at Fulston Manor School. We were introduced to all the instruments in an orchestra and we enjoyed listening to music inspired by different countries around the world. It was wonderful to see all the children joining in with singing and percussion.
In the final week it was lovely to be able to share some of the children’s learning from throughout the term, at our Open Classroom Event. The children gave a fantastic performance of the ‘creepy crawlies song’ in their mini-beast inspired masks. They all worked extremely hard planning and making their garden on a plate, taking ideas from the gardens around the world that they have studied. Also on display, were paintings in the style of pointillism, the children really persevered with this tricky technique and were very proud of what they achieved. It was wonderful to see so many of you attending the event and it was a delight to witness the children sharing their learning and success with their families. It was a real reminder of how far the class has come this year.
As always the success achieved by Butterfly Class is due in no small part to the help and encouragement that you have given throughout the year. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your constant support this year, without it my job would be a great deal harder, also a huge ‘thank you’ and ‘well done’ to all the children. I am so proud of all their effort throughout this year; teaching them has been an absolute pleasure.
Wishing you all a very happy summer holiday!
Term 5, 2016 – 17
It has been yet another fantastic term, with the children approaching learning with bags of enthusiasm!
This term’s topic was entitled ‘Future Aspirations’ and encouraged the children to think about their goals and ambitions for the future. During this topic the children have used a variety of resources to find out about the world of work, as well as taking the opportunity to question a number of visitors about their aspirations and the jobs they now do. We are very grateful to Rufus from Rocksteady Music School, Reverend Alan and PCSO Josh, for taking the time to come in, answer all our difficult questions and enrich our topic through their own experiences.
As part of our English lessons during the final weeks of term, we have looked at the aspirations of refugee children coming to England and followed the stories of Hamid and Israa. We talked about their feelings and compared their hopes and aspirations with our own. The paintings of L S Lowry inspired us to try creating our own paintings, using features of his signature style, to express our thoughts and feelings about refugees. We hope you enjoyed the opportunity to view these in our class gallery on the last day of term.
Home Learning has provided additional opportunities to enrich and broaden our topic – thank you for all your support in this area, as it has really made a difference to your child’s understanding and appreciation of the topic.
In Maths, Year 1 has been exploring the concepts of multiplication, division and fractions through the use of Numicon and everyday objects. They have clearly enjoyed this practical, hands-on maths and will continue to build on their understanding and develop methods of recording as we move into next term.
Year 2 SATS were completed at the end of this term, and I would like to take this opportunity to say a huge well done to all of Year 2 – what stars they were! They all approached the assessments with focus and perseverance; showing terrific resilience in all tasks. The results of these independent challenges will really help to shape their learning in the final term.
Next term we will be focusing on applying our skills with consistency and consolidating our knowledge in core subject areas, in preparation for moving on to the next year group and our topic will be all based around ‘Plants and Pollinators’.
Term 4, 2016-17
What a fantastic term it has been! The children have been so enthusiastic during our topic on Enterprising Victorians. Throughout the term they learnt about significant Victorians such as, Queen Victoria and Florence Nightingale. In addition to researching these influential figures, they have used role play to explore key events and to deepen their understanding of life during the Victorian era. In English the children were able to imagine what it would have been like to be a wounded soldier in the Scutari hospital as well as compare how hospitals have changed as a result of the work of Florence Nightingale. When writing letters and diaries as either Florence Nightingale or a wounded soldier the children were able to describe conditions in the field hospitals as well as imagining the thoughts and feelings of their character. The artefact boxes supplied by the Canterbury Archaeological Trust were a fantastic resource which we all enjoyed and really helped to bring our learning to life throughout the topic. The culmination of our learning – The Great Exhibition of Learning – was a terrific success. It was so wonderful to see all the children sharing their learning with friends and family. Thank you to everyone that attended; it really was a fun and interesting afternoon.
During our Health and Science Week we all really enjoyed the challenge – ‘Can you get fitter in a week?’ We all tried really hard to achieve as much as 60 minutes of activity in a day, keeping a science diary of the different types of activity and how long we spent on it. We also took part in a fitness test at the start and the end of the week, so we could compare our fitness; we found that we all had certain activities that we improved in after just 5 days. In addition to being more active, each day we focused on different parts of the body (brain, heart, lungs and bones) and we learnt how they work, what role they play and ways to maintain their health. The class clearly enjoyed the wide variety of practical and focused activities during the week as well as showing different ways of recording what they learnt. If you would like to see more of what we have been up to there are lots of photos on the website for you to enjoy.
Next term I am hoping to enrich the children’s learning through a topic entitled ‘Our Aspirations’, with the children’s ideas, interests and questions shaping the direction of the topic over the term. We will be thinking about the people, places and things that inspire us, as well as thinking about what they want to be when they are older. The children will be encouraged to pose questions and set themselves goals and challenges during the term and beyond. I am hoping to invite visitors in to talk about what they do for a living as well as arrange an inspirational trip during this term. If you have an interesting job and would be happy to share it with us, or if you know someone else that would, I would love to hear from you!
It just remains for me to thank you once again for your endless support and encouragement!