Fantastic phonics

This week we were visited by the Phonics Hub and we were delighted to be able to showcase our phonics lesson. In phonics lessons we are focused and keen to learn something new every day that will aid our reading skills. Learners love to read and our determination and hard work during phonics sessions is a key part of our daily learning.

In RE this week we have been learning more about the Creation and who Christians believe made the world. We found out about the different things God created on each of seven days and all agreed that we are so lucky to live in such a beautiful world.

In Science, we have been classifying animals into groups and thought carefully about the characteristics within each group. We sorted animals into birds, fish, mammals, reptiles and amphibians.

In English, we have been using chrome books to type some key facts around the Jurassic age. We are creating our own information pages to go into an encyclopaedia, remembering to use a title, different size font, labels and key facts. One Learner brought in an encyclopaedia from home and was keen to share his knowledge with the class – this was wonderful.

In History lessons we are also focusing on dinosaurs and this week, we learned that dinosaurs were on earth during the Mesozoic era and that they fit into the reptile group, as they were cold blooded and laid eggs to hatch their young.

Dinosaurs is most certainly cross-curricula this half term and we are looking forward to planning a trip to reflect our learning.

Learners arrive at school each keen to learn more.

Handling Artefacts

This  week, we read Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge, the story of a little boy who visits old people in a care home. He finds out that some of his friends have lost their memory. He asks questions to find out what a memory is. One of the ladies tells him stories from her past all linked to items. The Pioneers had access to the selection of items mentioned in the book-an egg, a medal from the war, shells, and additional linked items. She talked about boots with buttons so they tried out a button hook. Some were interested in the thimble. A puppet brought back happy memories for the old lady. Everyone was fascinated by a tiny, fragile New Testament from 1945 and a selection of letters from a soldier during the war. They looked closely at the selection of photographs and noted that things looked different and “old”
We looked at these alongside our own memory photographs-we will continue this work next week.
Happy Learning  

Dancing into the summer term.

This week, we have enjoyed our fist dance session with Hannah Verity Dance. Together with our friends, we were keen to show off our moves and enjoyed dancing to the beat. We will be working towards a routine over the coming weeks and are very excited to keep building on our new skills and learn a new part of this routine each week. 

In maths this week, we have been working hard on finding fractions – in particular halves and equal parts of a whole.

In English, we have been exploring the book The Greatest Show on Earth by Mini Grey. We have really enjoyed Mini Grey’s whistle stop tour of the history of the planet and have been identifying the features of a non-fiction book this week. Next week we will be creating our own additional pages to the book. Together we have decided to focus on the Jurassic age, which will also support our history topic of Digs, Dinosaurs and Discoveries.

In PHSCE this week, we have been celebrating who we are, what we have achieved and listening to the positive things others say about us. This was a wonderful session which strengthened our self belief and self confidence. It didn’t come easily for some to confidently talk about themselves , but by the end of the session we were all able to speak positively about ourselves and celebrate who we are – it was fantastic!

We have enjoyed sharing lots of stories together this week as always. Look out for the new labels that have come home in reading records this week, which will help to record the great reading taking place at home.

Learners have had a peaceful and settled return after the Easter holiday and are straight back into school routines and ready to learn!

Learners love to learn 🙂

From Tiny Acorns…

Way back in the Autumn, the Pioneers went to the forest and collected acorns and got to find out about our oak tree. We went through the process of selecting the best acorns and set them aside to rest over the winter in their little pots. Now that spring has sprung we have the most beautiful tiny oak trees. We took them to the forest to compare them to the big tree, spotting that the trunk is hard and lumpy and the branches and roots were much bigger too. we did a bit of bark rubbing which was very popular.

We planted the sunflower seeds that we harvested from last year’s sunflowers and searched in the soil to see what roots looked like.

We found plenty of juicy worms and a random head of garlic! Mrs McGill even managed to put up a birdbox.

When we returned to the classroom, we wrote about our adventures using the new vocabulary-bark, trunk, roots and wild garlic. We experimented with pastel pencils for our observational drawing and the results were wonderful and varied.

So much learning.

Inventors and Inventions

Learners have enjoyed another busy week in the classroom. 

On Tuesday we enjoyed a dance session with Poppy from Hannah Verity’s Dance. We jumped and hopped to music and ended the session with some fun games.

We are very excited to visit the National Railway Museum next week. To help prepare for this visit, we have been enjoying finding out about Inventors and Inventions, including the work of George Stephenson. We used Ipads to research information and found out he was often called ‘the father of the railways’. We also found out that he built a train called the Rocket which was an early passenger train. This helped us to know just how important George Stephenson was to modern railways. We are so excited to bring our  classroom learning to life next week on our trip.

We have been excited to see the seeds we planted in the forest are starting to grow. We have them on our windowsill in class and water and check the regularly. We also have some seeds in a container in the cupboard (with no light or water) and are keeping a close eye on these too.

We have begun to write our own poetry around the story of Romeo and Juliet and have taken to this wonderfully. The classroom has been bursting with knowledge and creativity and we hope to share our poems on Tapestry next week. 

In music, we were able to transfer our knowledge of the plot of Romeo and Juliet and invented our own musical story. We thought carefully about key parts of the story and chose our instruments to reflect the mood and emotion of each art. Our understanding of the plot was clear and to be able to transfer our knowledge into music was a triumph!

We are collecting plastic bottle tops in school, in order to recycle these into school resources. Please collect these at home and bring these in to school if you can!

Easter is approaching and we are looking forward to celebrating with families in Church this week.


Mapping Our Route

Next week we head to York on a very exciting trip. We took a look at an Ordnance Survey map to check out our route.  We took a look at Google Earth and found our location. We compared this with the map in front of us. The Pioneers noticed red lines and orange lines and questioned what these were. They were able to identify the land and the sea and areas of forest. The were able to identify beaches and rocky bits too. They were also using their phonics to read some of the place names finding York and Pickering and recognising Sleights. From previous work they spotted that this map has a grid too.

We are beyond excited about going on the bus to see the trains!

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

On Thursday families came in to school to celebrate World Book Day. Our focus was to celebrate Shakespeare and predominantly Romeo and Juliet. Families enjoyed joining in with many activities, such as painting and making roses, creating story maps of the text, decorating masquerade masks and writing love letters to send between Romeo and Juliet. Learners are really enjoying getting to know the plot ad characters in the text and identifying the rivalry between the Capulets and the Montagues.

In computers we have been considering face-to-face and online bullying and thought carefully about  how to be kind to our friends and how to keep ourselves safe. This is a really vital discussion, which was held with great maturity.

In PE, Learners are focusing on hockey skills. In this week’s session with Hawkes Sports we focused on balancing and movement and enjoyed some fun games to improve our skills.

In Science, we have been busy watering our newly planted seeds and are delighted to see some shoots sprouting already.

In Geography, we have been watching the weather all week and have really enjoyed watching the daily weather report. We were interested to find out about the job of a meteorologist and have enjoyed completing our own weekly weather chart too, paying attention to the temperature and wind direction.

In RE, we have been learning more about the Easter Story. We thought carefully about the different feelings and emotions we had during different parts of the story. Learners articulated their feelings wonderfully and this prompted a very meaningful discussion.

We ended the week dressing up for World Book Day, we shared lots of our favourite stories and talked about our favourite books and authors.

A busy week of learning as always in Learners Class.




Making Maps- Sleights and Fair Verona!

Inspired by our story telling and reading, we have made some more maps. We watched a wonderful version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and enjoyed spotting Mr Tumble! We got on our feet and acted out some of the scenes, shouting angrily at the opposing family. We also used Gnomio and Juliet to help us get our heads around the issues. The Pioneers were able to articulate the difficulties the two friends faced. We built Verona from loose parts and an impromptu puppet show took place.

With the story of Romeo and Juliet at the centre, we mapped out what we thought their city of Verona would be like. We used our bard book as inspiration and knew that the map needed to show Romeo’s house, Juliet’s house, the market place where they quarrel and the streets and bridges of the city. Because we had acted it all out, the drawing was the easy part. The Pioneers looked at a selection of other maps and spotted the grid and the compass. 

Our next job was to look at maps of a real place we knew well-our school grounds. We studied plans and went for a walk and the Pioneers were incredibly skilled at using the map and working out what was where asking,”Which way up does it go?” On return to the classroom, we drew our own maps with grids and added a compass rose.  The Pioneers love to write so many of them added labels too. 

Wonderful learning.