A very busy start to the new school year!
In literacy, we have been using our history unit on the 1969 space landing to complete writing in a range of genres. We began by recapping how to punctuate sentences using full stops and capital letters, in addition to using the conjunction ‘and’ in year 2. We then moved on to using the book ‘Man on the Moon: A diary in the life of Bob’ to look at adjectives, write a character description, identify the features of a diary entry and write our very own diary entry. The book ‘Whatever Next!’ helped us to learn about how changing just a couple of ideas can make a completely different story. Finally, after all our learning in history, we wrote a newspaper report on this important event. We really enjoyed learning about space and our writing was brilliant!
In maths, year 1 children learnt about place value within 10 where we sorted, counted and represented objects, wrote numbers as words, counted forwards and backwards, compared and ordered numbers, and looked at the number line. We then moved onto addition and subtraction within 10 where we were introduced to the part-whole method, writing number sentences, worked out fact families and used number bonds to add and subtract. Year 2 children learnt about place value within 100 by learning how to partition into tens and ones, writing numbers to 100, using number lines and counting in 2s, 5s and 10s. We then moved onto addition and subtraction within 100. In this unit, we learnt used number bonds, fact families and related facts to help us add and subtract 2-digit numbers.
Science was focused on animals including humans, all about me. We discovered the basic parts of the human body and learnt about each of the five senses. We went on sound hunts, tasted food, completed a smelling experiment and so much more! This unit has actually helped us with our literacy, as we are adding more detail by using our senses to describe in more detail.
In history, we learnt about the 1969 moon landing, focusing on Neil Armstrong and Tim Peake for out key question: ‘Why do we remember people?’. We looked at what explorers are and what they do, ensuring we understood the meaning of a space explorer. We researched Neil Armstrong as an astronaut from the past and his important involvement in a historic moment. We then moved onto how space technology had progressed and helped develop what we have available now, which is why we are finding out more about space every day. We researched Tim Peake and his link to space as an astronaut from the present. We then compared the two astronauts and found lots of similarities and differences. Finally, for our end point we wrote a script and performed a segment of news coverage to showcase our learning. We used theme music, microphones and interview questions to help us. This was so much fun!
In art, we completed a unit on colour. We focused on different artists that used primary, secondary and tertiary colours, in ways that are similar to artists nowadays. We also looked at shades, tinting, shapes and ways of using tools to change the way we use paint. The artists we looked at were: Piet Mondrian, Mark Rothko, Paul Klee, Jackson Pollock, Robert and Sonia Delaunay, and Wassily Kandinsky. Each lesson we focused on one of these artists and created artwork inspired by each of them.
Our question for this half term in RE was ‘What are festivals and why do we have them?’. First of all, we looked at what a celebration actually is and some examples of how we have celebrated important events in our lives. Throughout the unit, we learnt about a range of festivals from different religions, such as: Harvest, Diwali, Purim and Advent. We completed lots of activities to understand each of these festivals. For example: making Diya lamps for Diwali, baking Hamantaschen biscuits for Purim and creating Advent booklets. To finish this unit, we delivered a worship to the whole-school on the festivals we had learnt to teach the rest of the children. We did an amazing job at remembering so many facts about each festival.
Our focus in PSHE was ‘What is the same and different about us?’. We looked at what we like and dislike and what we are good at, finding that we are all quite different in those areas. We discussed what makes us special and how everyone has different strengths. We showed these strengths off to the class, noticing more similarities than before. Being unique and having personal qualities make us who we are was also an interesting discussion point. We used the book ‘Elmer’ to remind ourselves how important it is to embrace who we are and to not feel embarrassed. We found there are a range of things that make us unique within our class, but maybe these change when you look at the whole school for example. We spoke about having things in common with our friends and being able to identify how we are similar and different to others as well. We finished off this unit by learning how to use the correct names for the main parts of the body, which linked to our science unit, where we covered one of our friends in labels!
In PE, we have looked at hockey this half term. We started off by learning how to correctly hold a hockey stick and to ensure our grip was right too. We then moved onto dribbling, practising how to stay in control of the ball and ensuring that we were using the correct side of the hockey stick to do this. When confident with how keep the ball, we moved onto passing. This was about practising how hard and light to hit the ball and also a focus on direction to make sure it ended up in the right place. After this, we learnt how to score. Using the previous skills of dribbling and passing, we knew how to get from one area, into the semi-circle to score and how hard to hit the ball, to help us in managing to score as many goals as we could. Finally, we learnt about the different positions of hockey, ready to play our first games next half term.
Computing was based around online safety, exploring Purple Mash and grouping and sorting. To help the year 1 children learn how to use the laptops correctly and safely, the year 2 children showed them how to turn the laptops on and log in. We then showed them how to use the information on their Purple Mash logins to get onto their home page. Once logged in, we could explore Purple Mash. We looked at our work areas and the different topics and tools we could use to help us with our learning. Finally, we moved onto sorting and grouping where we learnt how to sort objects away from the computer, so we had a better understanding of the unit on the laptops.
Another half term full of lots of new learning!
In literacy, we have been using our geography unit on hot and cold places in the world to write in a range of ways. Before we could start that, it was Bonfire Night. We used this opportunity to look at the features of acrostic poems and write one about it, seeing if we could incorporate adjectives too. Shape poetry was then looked at, where we went on an Autumn sensory walk using our 5 senses that we had learnt about last half term. We collected lots of ideas and phrases to help us write a shape poem about Autumn. We then moved onto using the book ‘Meerkat Mail’ to look at postcards and informal letters. The book ‘Lost and Found’ was the final book of the half term. We used it to learn about character descriptions and fact files.
In maths, year 1 children learnt about addition and subtraction within 20 where we looked at the eight fact families, subtraction using a variety of methods and adding and subtracting 1 or 2. Our next unit was shape where we recognised, named and sorted 3D shapes, moving onto the same 2D shapes, and finally, patterns with 2D and 3D shapes. Year 2 children continued learning about addition and subtraction within 100 where they did more complex additions and subtractions, compared number sentenced and solved missing number problems. We then moved onto shape where we recognised and names both 2D and 3D shape, counted sides, vertices and faces, looked at lines of symmetry and made patterns with 2D and 3D shapes.
We continued our unit in science on animals including humans but moved onto the all about animals element. We discovered animal families, learnt about the differences between mammals and birds; amphibians, reptiles and fish, discovered the type of food living things eat, explored the difference between wild animals and pets, and finally, explained the characteristics of animals. Finally, for our end point we had to sort the animals into two groups of our choosing and justified our choices.
In geography, we learnt about the hot and cold places of the world for our key question: ‘Where on Earth?’. We learnt about the seven continents and really enjoyed singing the continents song every lesson. After we were confident on these, we focused on the five oceans. This also had a son that we liked, which made our learning more interesting. We then learnt about the equator and what it means, splitting the world into the northern and southern hemisphere to work out their climates. We then moved onto learning the difference between climate and weather, keeping a weather diary for Draycott. Finally, we compared the north and south poles, researching their names and fascinating facts, including animals you would find there. We used lots of resources through this unit, including a globe, maps and an atlas.
Our first half term of DT was all about puppets and sewing. Our challenge was to create a Christmas puppet. The steps to get there included: exploring fabrics, making accessories, joining fabrics, designing our puppets, making our puppets and evaluating them. We had to learn how to sew, using the blanket stitch method. Our puppets were based on an angel, elf, snowman and Santa. These puppets looked incredible and we were super proud of ourselves!
Our question for this half term in RE was ‘Why does Christmas matter to Christians?’. First of all, we looked at what Christmas actually means to us by creating a stocking full of pictures that are important to us. We then learnt about the Nativity story by learning why Christians celebrate Christmas. The importance of light at Christmas was discussed and what Advent is. We then learnt about what the Christingle represent for Christians and created our own, ready to use in our Christmas concert. Finally, we spoke about how we show thanks to God and created an acrostic poem together to show this. For our end point, we had three explanations or Christmas and decided which one was most suited our original question, explaining our decision.
Our focus in PSHE was ‘Who is special to us?’. We looked at family and other groups that we belong to, such as beavers, gymnastics, school etc. We then drew pictures of the different people in our families that love and care for us, discussing similarities and differences between them. We saw that everyone’s was different but most had something in common with another child e.g. 2 dogs. Thinking about what people do to make us feel loved and cared for was a really lovely lesson. We drew pictures of these ways and discussed how we could easily make someone’s day better by doing something that made them feel these positive ways. After learning this, we looked at what families do together. Again, drawing pictures of what we enjoy doing when spending time with our loved ones. This ranged from watching films with hot chocolates, to going to the park, to reading a story in bed together. Finally, we discussed what we should to if we were feeling unhappy or worried about our family. We drew around our hands and wrote down the names of five people we could trust and felt happy talking to.
In PE, we continued hockey. Firstly, we practised all the skills we had learnt before half term. This included: dribbling, passing and scoring. We spent some more time learning about the different positions and completed games trying to find a space for others to pass to during a game. We played mini games with each other to figure out these different positions and put our skills to the test. Finally, we played some hockey games together, which we were very excited about!