Pioneers Class

Welcome to Pioneers

Pioneers children are Reception aged (four or five years old). Children enjoy a range of creative and engaging play based activities, as well as formal inputs, to support their development and growth. Children in Pioneers are taught by Mrs Hann, Mrs McGill and Mrs Gurney. 

Learning begins the minute they walk through the door. The classroom is a carefully curated collection of wonderful things to allow the children to flourish. The classroom is theirs and everything in it is there for a purpose. What they chose to do may be completely different for each individual. This is when the learning happens. The resources are ready to use and accessible and the team work together to create, to communicate, to count and to grow 

Each day starts with exploration of the resources and suggestions for learning set out around the room. The Pioneers will come together for teaching. This will happen in small groups, as a whole class and often one to one. Across the day we will gather for mathematics, reading, writing and phonics sessions, to share stories and to learn about the world.

PE kits are in school all week to allow us to do PE at any time. This term, the Pioneers have dance on a Tuesday afternoon.

Mrs Gurney teaches computing on a Tuesday morning.

We are rolling with phonics and children will bring a book and their reading record home each day. Please read little and often and write a message in the reading record. All reading is good reading. This is such an exciting time.

Please look out for a text message to let you know when we will go to the forest. We will use our wonderful outdoor space as much as we can and this will not always be on the same day each week. 

Children’s progress and activities are recorded in their own Learning Journeys. These act as a summary of the journey children embark upon during their time in Reception and demonstrate the progress and success that has been achieved, as well as the next steps that may need to be taken.

What a Wonderful Week

The sun is shining and that makes everything feel wonderful.

We all did our writing outside and playtime was bursting with energy. Our sunflowers are stretching up tall and the snails have all disappeared into the shady spots.

We were inspired by Matisse to create some collage. The Pioneers added their own frames and really enjoyed “painting with scissors.”

We got out on the field to get to grips with the organisation required for Sports Day which is fast approaching. That field is mighty big when you are 4 or 5. We are learning not to cut the corners!

A Magnificent Week of Work

We have had another four day week but we have certainly done five days’ worth of work. The Pioneers have been on fire. We have been building up our knowledge of the creatures living on our school site and we focussed on snails. However,when we went on a snail hunt we only found one snail and a couple of rather large slugs. There were plenty of woodlice. Thankfully our wonderful families made up the shortfall and we imported a large number of snails all of which have found new homes outside…with a few inside too.

We have really enjoyed spotting pattern and shapes in shells and plants and recreating these using loose parts and pastels and pipecleaners.

The whole week has been just wonderful.

God Save The King

The Pioneers and their families had a wonderful afternoon celebrating the King’s Coronation. The classroom was packed and we made commemorative plates,King Charles spoons and crowns. On the floor, we built a huge structure inspired by Westminster Abbey. One high point was our rendition of God Save the King on Kazoo. This was unrehearsed!

Thank you to everyone who joined in the fun and helped with the tidy up too.


Finding Out About Beekeeping

We had a wonderful morning with Mrs Robertson who brought in all her beekeeping kit. The Pioneers already had a lot of knowledge about bees and their body parts. This allowed them to ask very specific questions like,”Do bees have noses?” Mrs Robertson added to their existing knowledge giving us a glimpse into the life of a bee. Pollination was modelled with big paper flowers and a little bee. We all got up and did the wiggle dance that bees use to communicate with other bees. We got to handle parts of the hive and try on the suits used to stay safe.

So much learning and thank you to Mrs Robertson for sharing her knowledge and passion.


Plant a Seed

We went to the forest on Wednesday to photograph our writing so we can make people more aware of the need to look after the plants. The Pioneers visited different areas of our school site to consider if we could leave the grass a little longer to help the insects and the plants. They agreed that some areas would be better kept short. They like to play football and rugby so the grass on the pitches would be better if it were cut. The edges of the field and the forest could be longer. 

We also planted the sunflower seeds we harvested in the autumn from our sunflowers. We made labels and expect to see some growth after the weekend. After planting,we wrote instructions detailing the sequence of planting a seed.

A Day in The Forest

The sun shone and everyone was delighted to be outside and enjoying the fresh air and the green all around. The focus of the day was to look at what was growing and establish a knowledge of roots going down into the ground and shoots coming up. We discussed how scientists look carefully and that botanists are interested in plants.We were also getting to grips with using a selection of tools for digging and dig we did!

Lots of soil was shifted and one voice was heard saying,”We are miners!”

We discovered that there were different types of roots. Some were thin and like hairs and others were much fatter. We also uncovered some lichen and some spawn. We found new grown and perfect acorn cups. Many returned to the classroom with pocket treasure.

A wellies remained in pairs and a good time was had by all.

A Little Bit of Spring has Sprung

The Pioneers have been doing a little bit of quiet painting this week and it was lovely to watch. The were very peaceful and undistracted when choosing colours and mixing and creating. They all take great care with the brushes and where they apply the colour and how they choose to do this. Every viewpoint was different. They passed the paintpots and shared the space so beautifully. 

A quiet moment in a busy room.

What is a Memory?

This week we have read a beautiful book all about memories. In the book a little boy called Wilfred goes to visit the older people who live in the care home next door. He hears that some of them may have lost their memory and he sets out to help them find it again. He collects a number of items in a basket to talk about and sees how the old people recount their youth. The Pioneers talked about happy times that they remembered and that sometimes they have sad memories too. 

The conversations were beautiful.

Pioneers Explore in St John’s

The Pioneers had a most wonderful visit to St John’s Church hosted by Mrs Jones. The sun shone and the snow was crisp and white. 

We were all excited to see the font and talk about our own baptisms and family events in church. Mrs Jones told us about the old font which sits in the porch which is even older than the church.

Having discussed our Christian Values,the Pioneers understood that they needed to be respectful whilst in church. We continued our exploration by talking about the altar and spotted the purple cloth-just like our prayer space and the table in school. Mrs Jones explained why there were no flowers and the Pioneers added this new knowledge to their exisiting knowledge of Lent.

All the Pioneers got up in the pulpit,sat in the pews,looked at the windows and found the Bibles. We looked at the different coloured vestments and finished our visit with a story. The Pioneers then searched in all the windows to find the pictures of Jesus with the little children.

On return to school the Pioneers completed a Church Check List to illustrate all the new vocabulary. They painted pictures and wrote about their visit. We also made big picture maps of our journey. The focus was excellent.

Another week of wonderful learning.

Simply Wonderful World Book Day

To finish a wonderful week of learning,we read together and created together and had a lovely time. The mess could have been a lot worse.

We read The Disgusting Sandwich and then found worms and slugs and feathers and green and grey gloop. We all experimented with running our sandwiches over with a tyre.  All sandwiches were disgusting and went home at the end of the day.

As always,we took our Friday trip to the library and it was lively. We read The Highway Rat as we had a Highway Rat in our midst. We talked about the ruff on his shirt. 

Such a great day.