Ants

Ants Class
Reception/Year 1
Ants Class General Information
Dear Parents and Carers,

Welcome to Ants Class, a mixed Reception/Year 1 classroom!

I am so pleased to welcome all the children and their families to Thriplow CofE Primary School, and am excited to be on this learning journey with them. My name is Miss Batty (known as Miss B), and I am the class teacher. In the mornings the teaching assistant is Miss Webbe, and in the afternoon it is Mrs Maloney. On Wednesday afternoons the children will be taught by Mrs Symmons. On Wednesday mornings the Reception children will be learning outdoors in the Wild Space with Mrs Symmons. On Thursday afternoons the Year 1 children will be learning in the Wild Space with Mrs Symmons.

Each day, your child should have in school…

  • A blue bookbag, NOT a rucksack, as these are too bulky in the corridors.

  • A clear, reusable water bottle with water to drink (absolutely no squash/juice). Your child should take this home each day to be cleaned/to change the water.

  • A PE kit, as specified by the school uniform policy. The PE kit must be kept at school at all times.

  • Their reading record and reading book. The children will be given their first reading book when they begin school full time.

  • You may also choose to provide a spare set of clothes incl. underwear/socks/tights/shoes in case of toilet accidents etc.

  • Indoor shoes and outdoor shoes (one pair for each). The children must change into clean shoes when coming inside. This helps to keep our beautiful classroom clean.

  • Outdoor learning clothes. The children must have wellies, waterproof trousers and a waterproof coat, or a waterproof all in one suit.  The children will wear their outdoor learning clothes over their regular uniform. It is important to have these clothes so that they can be fully immersed in outdoor learning. Outdoor learning clothing can be purchased through school.

Topic - Our Big Question

Each half term, our class learning centres around a "Big Question".  We use this to enhance our children's talk and philosophical thinking skills. We will be exploring this question in all areas of our learning.

Our Big Question this term is: "Should scientists bring dinosaurs back to life?"

Areas of Learning

In the Reception year, there are 7 key areas of learning. These are Literacy, Maths, Physical Development, Expressive Arts and Design, Understanding the World, Communication and Language, and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.

With our Year 1 children, we will be exploring the National Curriculum. The focus subjects are English, Maths, Science, History, Geography, Computing, Modern Foreign Language, Art, Design & Technology, Religious Education, Physical Education, and Personal, Social, Health, and Economic Education. 

We explore all areas of learning every day using a very cross-curricular thematic approach. This happens through teacher-led whole class carpet sessions, small group sessions, and one-to-one sessions. As well as these sessions, the children will have the opportunity to explore the ‘enhanced provision’ every day. Enhanced provision is the carefully selected resources put out in the classroom/outdoor covered area each day, which are designed to engage, support, and challenge the children in their independent learning.

Daily Reading

Once the children begin school full time, they will be given a reading record and reading book. They must bring this reading record and reading book to school with them every day, even if it does not need changing. When the children arrive at school, they must put the record and book into the book basket. Their books will be changed once they have read the book once or twice. Please try to read with your child every night, even if only for 10 minutes! It will significantly help them to develop their reading skills.

If you have any questions about reading books, please don’t hesitate to ask me.

Tapestry

To track the children’s progress throughout the year, we will use the online learning journal ‘Tapestry’ at school. You can find more information about Tapestry here: www.tapestry.info and of course please speak to me at school if you have any questions.

Mystery Readers 

We love to have parents and carers come and visit our classroom. As part of this, I am looking for volunteer mystery readers to come and read a story of your choice at school to the children. The children love the surprise, and it really helps to develop their excitement and love for books! Once a week, I will tell the children we are having a mystery reader. The children will all close their eyes, and excitedly wait for the mystery reader to arrive. If you would love to be a mystery reader, do come and speak to me in school, and we can arrange a time for you to visit.

Proud Clouds

It is so important to be proud of the things we learn at school and at home, and to celebrate them! If your child does something you are proud of at home, I would love to hear about it, and share the achievement with the other children. This can be anything from a certificate from a club, to helping to lay the table for dinner. Take a ‘proud cloud’ from the folder by our classroom gate, and write about your child’s achievement on it. Then please return it to me, and we will then celebrate it in class and display the cloud on our proud clouds board in our classroom. Come into our classroom to see our clouds and why we are proud!

If you have any further queries, do not hesitate to come and speak to me in school. I look forward to getting to know you and the children this year!

Miss B

If you have any questions about any aspect of our class, please do not hesitate to come and speak to me at the beginning or end of school at our class gate.
 
What are we learning about in Ants Class?
Term: Spring 1 2019-20
Topic: Dinosaurs
Big Question: Should scientists bring dinosaurs back to life?

In Literacy the children are focussing on non-fiction writing. Year 1 have been writing dinosaur factfiles, as well as non-chronological reports about Mary Anning, our historical figure. Year 1 also wrote fact files about Lunar New Year. Reception have been writing CVC words, and some of the children are beginning to write sentences.

For Phonics, the whole Year 1 cohort are taught in the Butterflies classroom. They are currently learning about alternative digraph spellings eg ee/ea/ey, as well as split digraphs. The Reception children are developing their knowledge of double grapheme sounds, known as digraphs.

In Maths, Reception are developing their understanding of addition, as well as looking at 2D and 3D shapes, and using cubes to measure objects. Year 1 have been exploring counting in 2s, 5s, and 10s, as well as place value and number bonds to 20. Year 1 have also been looking at coins, telling the time to the o'clocl & half past, and 3D shape.

In PE the children will be taught by Mrs Symmons every Wednesday afternoon, and this term we will be focusing on dance and movement. We have been looking at moving with expression and emotion, and have performed a Chinese lion dance for Lunar New Year. The children have also learnt a dinosaur dance!

In RE we have been exploring Sikhism. We have learnt about where and how Sikhs worship, what they believe in, and how they demonstrate their faith through the 5 Ks.

In Wild Space with Mrs Symmons the children have been cooking noodles for Lunar New Year, made bird feeders, and built dens. The Year 1s have been specifically looking at plants, trees, and seasonal changes.

In Art, we have been developing our art skills, through the observational drawing of fossils and creating dinosaurs from clay. Year 1 have begun using their sketchbooks, and we were very lucky to have a visit from a real artist who taught us how to draw our class animal; ants!

In Music we have used the instruments to create sounds to demonstrate dinosaur movements. Additionally, we have listened to the music from Jurrassic Park and used art to convey our interpretation of the music.

In Geography Year 1 have been looking at China and its location in the world. They have been comparing it and its features to the United Kingdom.

In Computing, the Year 1 children have continued to use the Purple Mash website. Reception children have been exploring a maths program on the iPads, and we continue to explore e-safety.

In PSHE, we will be thinking and talking about our big question, as well as building our relationships as a class.

Term: Autumn 2 2019-20
Topic: People who help us
Big Question: What does it mean to help someone?

In Literacy the Year 1 children will be continuing to develop their writing stamina and their use of full stops, finger spaces, and capital letters. They will also be writing as a character and learning about different types of letter. Reception children will be working on their pencil control, name writing, and writing CVC words.

For Phonics, the whole Year 1 cohort will be taught in the Butterflies classroom. They are currently learning about alternative digraph spellings eg ee/ea/ey, as well as split digraphs. The Reception children will continue to develop their knowledge of single grapheme sounds.

In Maths, Reception will be continuing to explore numbers 0-10, and learning the beginnings of addition and subtraction. Year 1 are exploring addition and subtraction beyond 20, and working a lot in their mental Maths books. We will also be looking at capacity, weight, length

In PE the children will be taught by Mrs Symmons every Wednesday afternoon, and this term we will be focusing on dance and movement.

In RE we are looking at the Christian understanding of Jesus' disciples, and also the Christian story of Incarnation.

In Art, we will be developing our art skills, including lots of observational drawing of people who help others, eg firefighters, police officers.

In Music we will continue to explore our school's amazing musical instrument collection and will compose a short piece of music. We will be learning a lot about the Nutcracker music as part of the lead up to our school trip. We will also be doing lots of singing as part of our Nativity rehearsals.

In Geography Year 1 will be learning about the UK and the countries within it, focusing heavily on Scotland and the celebration of St Andrew's Day in November.

In Computing, the Year 1 children will be using the Purple Mash website and developing their mouse control. Reception children will be exploring a painting program on the iPads. We will be thinking about our e-safety unit; being "Internet Sharp".

In PSHE, we will be thinking about, talking about, and acting upon ways that we can help others.

Term: Autumn 1 2019-20
Topic: This is Me

This term in Ants Class our topic is 'This is Me'! This topic will explore what makes us special and unique, as well us helping us to understand the amazing workings of the human body! We will also be investigating Autumn and celebrating Harvest.

In Literacy the Year 1 children will be developing their writing stamina and their use of full stops, finger spaces, and capital letters. Reception children will be working on their pencil control, name writing, and initial sounds.

For Phonics, the whole Year 1 cohort will be taught in the Butterflies classroom. They will first revisit the phonemes and tricky words they learnt last year, and then we will begin to introduce new ones. The Reception children will begin by becoming more 'phonemically aware', and then we will introduce the first few letter sounds to them, beginning with 's, a, t, p, i, and n'.

In Maths, Reception will be exploring numbers 0-10, and learning how to count objects very carefully. We will also be looking at 2D shapes, capacity, and talking about the days and months of the year. Year 1  children will be developing their knowledge of numbers 0-100, and becoming familiar with the 100 square. They will also begin to learn how to write and read the days of the week, as well as writing and reading numbers 0-20 in words. Year 1 will also explore 2D shape in depth, as well as developing their understanding of directions and capacity.

In PE the children will be taught by Mrs Symmons every Wednesday afternoon, and this term we will be focussing on dance and movement.

In RE we are looking at the Christian understanding of God and Creation, as well as the Christian celebration of Harvest.

In Wild Space we ...

In Art, in-keeping with our 'This is Me' topic, we will be looking closely at self-portraits. We will do this through exploring famous artists' self-portraits, as well as creating our own for our 'We Are Ants Class' classroom display.

In Music we will begin exploring our school's amazing musical instrument collection, and learn how to correctly look after and play the instruments. We will also be doing lots of singing!

We are centering our Science learning around humans, and are developing our knowledge the human body. This will include investigating human body parts (both inside and out!), teeth, and our five senses. of jungle animals, jungle plants, and what the habitat of the jungle is like. We are also thinking about how we can look after our jungle environments.

In Geography we will be thinking about the environment and place in which we live, as well as a map of Thriplow and where we go to school.

In Computing, the Year 1 children will begin using the Purple Mash website and developing their mouse control. Reception children will begin by exploring a painting program on the iPads.

In PSHE, as part of our 'This is Me' topic, we will be thinking about how we can be kind friends, and how we can 'live' our Thriplow school vision (particularly the part about 'clothing ourselves in kindness'). We will also be exploring how we can recognise, understand, and manage the emotions we experience.