Welcome back after the half term break. We’re ready for another busy term of learning in Year One as well as getting the children ready to move on to Year Two.
In maths this term we will be ensuring that children have a secure understanding of multiplication and division. We will be looking at multiplication being the same as repeated addition (so 5x5 is the same as 5+5+5+5+5) and using some of the language associated with multiplication. We will be using Numicon and other manipulatives to help us to understand that division is the same as repeated subtraction. By the end of Year One children should be confident in knowing their 2x, 5x and 10x table facts to 5x the number without needing to count. We will be working on this in class and will try to link some homework to this also. Children will also be encouraged to connect their learning of the 2x table facts to being able to double numbers up to double 10 and find halves of numbers to 20. In addition to this we will be working on our measurement skills, including money and time. By the end of the term children should know the days of the week in order as well as the months of the year. They should be able to tell the time to the hour and half past the hour as well as being able to draw the hands on a clock face to show these times. Some of the songs that we will be using to help us with this can be found on the British Council website
In English this term we will be continuing to use texts to help us develop our writing skills. We will continue to link our learning in English to our theme learning so lots of our texts will relate to castles, knights, princesses and dragons! We will undertake a mixture of fiction and non-fiction writing, working towards achieving the expected outcomes for the end of Year One which include writing correctly punctuated sentences using full stops, capital letters, question marks and exclamation marks in the correct places; correctly formed capital and lower case letters which are correctly joined; accurate spellings for the Year One ‘Common Exception Words’ (we have been learning these for spelling tests throughout the last term) and plausible spellings of other words using phonic strategies. By the end of Year One children are expected to be able to read back their own writing and check that it makes sense.
An ongoing key focus for Class Two is ensuring that all children are confident in their use of phonics for reading and writing. In June all children nationally are screened in school to check their phonic skills. This is nothing for them to worry about, in fact they won’t even really be aware that they have been screened as it happens in school with an adult with whom they are familiar. We will continue to prepare the children for this by having regular phonics focus sessions throughout the day as well as encouraging children to be using phonics to spot patterns when they are blending for reading and to hear sounds when they are sounding out for spelling. Through the weekly spelling sheets that come home we will continue to have a focus on the accurate spelling of Year One words that are common words that don’t ‘obey’ the rules the children have learned in phonics! We will also add some words to these that some of the children are finding tricky in their writing in school.
Thank you to everyone for the work that you are continuing to put in at home to hear your child read regularly, we appreciate that life is busy so we’re grateful for the time that you’re able to give to this. This is so important in helping them to become more fluent readers but also to build stamina for reading for longer periods and to help them to enjoy reading. Asking your child questions when they are reading can allow them to further explore the story and practise their ability to interpret information. Below are some suggested questions that you may find helpful during reading sessions:
Who is (are) the main character(s)?
What is the main idea?
What is the problem? How was it solved?
Describe the setting using evidence from the text.
Where does the story take place?
Did you think the story had a good ending? If not, how could you have changed the ending?
Are there any words you didn't understand? How can you find out their meaning?
Ask your child why certain characters are feeling like they are (happy, sad, angry, jealous, etc.), and ask if they know any other words that mean the same.
Did they like the story? Why or why not?
Our learning in Science this term continues our topic of plants which lots of the children have found interesting. We hope to be able to continue to use our fantastic school grounds to help us to learn more about plants and trees. Theme Our theme this term is ‘Who lives in a castle?’ The children have come up with some interesting things that they would like to learn about castles and who lived in them. This topic is linked strongly to History but we will include some aspects of geography, art, design technology and IT within our learning. We are hoping to be able to arrange a visit to a local castle as part of our theme work in order to really bring the children’s learning to life, we will ensure you have as much notice as possible of this potential visit. In order to keep costs to an absolute minimum we are hoping to avoid the costs of using a coach for our visit by asking parents to arrange to have their child dropped off at Dover Castle and collecting from there on the day of our visit.
‘Dance’ is our PE focus this term. We will be learning about dance with the help of a specialist dance teacher each week. The lessons will build on previous learning and will explore how we can move in different, creative ways. Please ensure that your child has a suitable, named PE kit in school (polo shirt/T-shirt, shorts and plimsolls) Our PE day is going to be Thursday for this term. Earrings must be removed by the child themselves for PE sessions; if they struggle to manage this alone then please ensure that they leave their earrings at home on PE days.
In our RE lessons this term we will be thinking about values, linking our school values to the values that Christians consider to be important in living a good life. Children will have opportunities to plan and ask questions about things that matter to them. They will have the freedom to creatively present their stories and values in their own way.
Every Monday children will be continue to be given a list of five spelling words to practise in class upon arriving at school each morning. On Friday the children will bring their spellings home for you to test them. They will bring them back to show the class teacher on Monday. The words are a mixture of ‘High Frequency Words’, ‘Common Exception Words’ and words that some children may have been finding tricky in their writing. Maths homework will be set and given to children each Friday for them to complete over the weekend. This homework will enable children to practise skills already taught in class and will prepare them for the following week’s learning. Children should bring their completed task back to school on Monday morning. A piece of English homework will also be set each Friday for completion over the weekend. Children should be aiming to read at home every day for a minimum of 10-15 minutes. Children should use sounding out to help them decode the words on the page, but it is also important that they continue to think about what would make sense in the context of the sentence and in the story they are reading. It is also helpful for children to use the pictures as a clue to support their reading. It has been a pleasure to work alongside all of you in the past term and I am looking forward to working with the class through to the summer. If you have any questions about anything to do with school life then please feel free to come and speak to me at the end of the school day or pop in to the office to organise an appointment at a convenient time.