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Welcome back to a new half-term, we are now half-way through your child’s first year at school! Our learning experiences will be based on the theme ‘What a Wonderful World’. We will enjoy a number of enriching experiences and exciting visitors as we explore the world around, above and below us (and beyond!). We anticipate many moments of awe and wonder over the coming weeks in all areas of learning…
Understanding the World:
‘Egg-citing’ times ahead, during Lent we will observe new life growing from the ‘inside out’ when we look after a dozen hen’s eggs for two weeks. The children will be on ‘chick watch’ as they take care of the eggs in the incubator and, fingers crossed, we will hopefully witness a real ‘hatch’ after a few days!
We have an immersive ‘rockpool’ experience planned for the children to observe and handle a variety of sealife creatures as well as a fossil workshop and dinosaur visit on 20 March, with a surprise visitor from a prehistoric world!
Our forthcoming trip to ‘Imagine That’ on Friday 13 March will support the children’s understanding of scientific concepts and processes such as change, materials and their properties and forces. In addition, we will explore the world around us as we take on different roles in the world of work, leisure and fantasy at the ‘imagination village’.
Personal, Social & Emotional Development
Our RE topics are ‘Gathering’ and ‘Growing’. On Ash Wednesday we will begin to explore Lent as a time to ‘grow more like Jesus’ and think of ways we can follow in his footsteps, shining from the inside out. We will learn about our own traditions and those from other cultures when we celebrate Shrove Tuesday, Mother’s Day, St Patrick’s Day, Easter and the Hindu festival of Holi. During ‘Fairtrade Fortnight’, the children will explore the idea of ‘fairness’ and understand how they can help make life fairer for others.
Communication & Language
The children will be encouraged to be curious, to wonder, ask questions and give accounts of what they see, hear, feel and think while they engage in awe-inspiring activities such as meeting a life size T-Rex, handling aquatic sea creatures or witnessing our eggs hatch right before their eyes! During ‘time to talk’ sessions, we will encourage the children to reflect on these experiences by answering questions, making links and examining evidence to draw their own conclusions.
We will celebrate ‘World Book Day’ on Friday 6 March. The theme is ‘share a million stories’ and the children may come to school dressed as a character from one of their favourite books.
In phonics, we continue to work within Phase 3 of our letters and sounds programme. The children will focus on reading and spelling words using all the graphemes, di/trigraphs taught so far. Please support your child as often as possible to read high frequency and tricky words ‘on sight’ and use phonic skills to ‘break down’ or ‘sound out’ unfamiliar words when reading and spelling. We will start sending two reading books home per night this half-term: a phonic reader and a non-decodable text, levelled according to current reading attainment. Your child will keep the same decodable (phonic) reading book in their homework bag for the entire week to allow repetition and consolidation of the sounds and phase they are working in.
Guided reading and writing sessions will focus on non-fiction texts. We will explore the key features to know and remember when reading or writing factual information. The children will have opportunities to write about the real events of the chicks hatching in their own ‘chick diaries’, recording the changes they observe each day, drawing and writing about their observations.
The children will consolidate their understanding of adding and subtracting and some will progress to ‘counting on’ and ‘counting back’ from the larger number to add and take away through ‘egg’ themed calculation activities. We will develop a sense of number when we explore number bonds to 10: comparing numbers, finding the difference between numbers and counting on to find how many more to make 10. The children will be encouraged to recall number pairs to make 10 and to solve maths problems using this developing understanding.
Expressive Arts and Design
In music, we will learn a variety of topical songs/hymns including ‘Light of the World’ ‘Reach for the Stars’, ‘Spring Chicken’, ‘Easter Jubilation’ and ‘Shine from the Inside Out’. We will design and make seasonal greetings cards and Easter treats using mixed media and materials and may even participate in an Easter bonnet parade and easter egg hunt.
In PE this half term, we will begin our dance unit: travelling, copying & performing actions as well as developing the fundamentals of hopping, galloping, skipping, sliding, jumping, changing direction, balancing and running. Please continue to praise your child’s efforts to dress themselves and look after their belongings independently.
Key dates for this half-term:
Friday 6 March: World Book Day (come to school dressed as a story character)
Friday 13 March: Reception visit to Imagine That
Tuesday 17 or Thursday19 March: Parents Evening
*We hope to offer another opportunity for Reception parents/carers to join us in school for an Easter crafts/story/singing session– date still to be confirmed.
Thank you for your continued support and encouragement, we look forward to another half-term filled with many more ‘magic moments’ to remember. Please encourage your child to always ‘reach for the stars’ to be the best they can be, at home and in school.