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Our Trip to Build a Bear Workshop

We had a wonderful visit to Build A Bear Workshop on January 31st. We did lots of talking about our visit and reflected on what we had seen and learnt when we got back. This has been turned into a Learning Story which you can see both in the classroom and below. We’d love to hear your thoughts on it.

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After the February half term Charlie will start to come and visit the children at home. Please make sure you look after Charlie and bring him back to school. We’d love for you to complete the special diary so we can share your child’s experiences with the whole class. We encourage the children to write in the diary themselves rather than have you do it for them. Look out for Charlie coming to a house near you soon!

A huge thank you to the Parents/Carers who came with us on our visit. Without you we wouldn’t be able to take the children on these important visits.

How you can continue the learning at home? 

  • Go on visits to other places in Sheffield.  Talk about how they are the same as Manor Top and Meadowhall and how they are different.  
  • Go on visits on public transport, such as the bus or tram, and allow your child to help paying for tickets. It will help them understand money and how the different coins work. 
  • Allow your child to take small risks (with your close supervision) such as going on escalators. It will help them develop their self confidence and ability to manage their own safety. 

You can send us pictures of your visits or complete a wow moment in class.

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Cake Cake Cake!

What a week we had last week! The children had been talking a lot about cake. It has been a few children’s birthdays in Onyx class and some of them had brought cake to celebrate. Then it was a different child’s birthday and they didn’t bring a cake so we discussed how cake wasn’t just for birthdays and you didn’t ALWAYS get cake on someone’s birthday. We had also been talking about cake when we’d done learning about The Highway Rat the week before.

The children decided they wanted to make cake which the teachers agreed was a great idea. However, if we wanted to make cake there were a few things we needed to do first.

The very first thing we needed to do was write a list of ingredients that we would need. For this we had to find a recipe and find out what we needed. Once we had a list we asked some children to go to the shop and buy the ingredients. Before they went we talked about money and made sure they would be able to pay for the ingredients.

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Once we’d got out ingredients we used our recipe to make the cake mixture. We used a special recipe which we can do ourselves where we had to balance all the ingredients with an egg. We decided we wanted to add different colours and different flavours as well.

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Then we had to ask the grown ups to help us put the mixture in the oven so it could bake. We knew that we would have to wait for it to cool down and then we decorated our cake as well. Once our cake was ready we had another job to do. We only had one cake and 29 children so we had to share the cake. Miss Parker helped us by cutting the cake in half and then we kept cutting it in half until we had 8 pieces of cake. Look how yummy our cake looks…..

IMG_9871That still wasn’t enough pieces so Miss Parker made sure there were enough pieces cut from each of the 8 letting everyone have a piece.

We were excited to taste our cake. Jacob said, “Thats the besest cake I’ve ever seen!

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Everyone tried the cake and most of use agreed it tasted lovely. Some of the layers tasted of peppermint and some tasted of orange!!! We were all talking about which was our favourite bit of the cake and which bits we didn’t like as much. We decided to find out which was our favourite part. We had to remember all the different parts of the cake and then we came to put a tally next to our favourite. There was a clear winner!

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We didn’t just make a cake for ourselves. We knew the birds were outside and in the cold weather they needed to find lots of food to help keep them warm. We decided to make cake for the birds as well. It was very different to ours and we decided that we wouldn’t swap! We’ve hung it up in our outdoor area and are hoping the birds come to eat some soon.

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We had such a fabulous week making cake and loved being involved in every part of the cake making from writing lists, counting money, going to the shop,  measuring, baking, sharing and finally to eating the cake.

How to continue the learning at home? 

  • Follow simple recipes at home to make cakes and other treats. 
  • Allow your child to pay in the shop and talk about the different coins. 
  • Share other food types at home, such as biscuits or cake between family members.

Your child will be learning maths and so much more without even knowing! 

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This Week’s Awards- Spring 1 Week 4

Our Mathematician of the Week was extremely motivated to word hard all week to achieve the award. She was spotted by every member of staff trying hard with her maths and seeking to develop her skills, especially in writing the numbers. At the beginning of the week she was copying them to write them but by the end of the week she was doing it much more independently. Great job!

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Writer of the Week this week did a fantastic job at independent writing. She has sounded out to spell and used some of the tricky word spellings, such as the, which she knows from memory. She was then able to read it back to an adult remembering what she had written. We can’t wait to see what you write next! Well done!

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Our Books at Bedtime winner was drawn out again on Friday. We had 14 cards back from the whole class which is great. Don’t forget to keep reading bedtime books again all this week and return your card next Friday for the final winner. Its also PJ Day in FS and KS1 next Friday to celebrate the end of Books at Bedtime. There’ll be a letter during the week so keep a look out.

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Getting Changed for PE

Today was a very special day in Onyx class, we got changed for PE for the very first time. A huge thank you to all the parents/ carers who sent PE kits to school, nearly everybody had a PE kit. Look how smart we all look….

We all did a fantastic job of getting changed all by ourselves. Miss Parker and Miss Morris only had to help with a few top buttons and some pairs of tights but these are really tricky. Everyone did a great job of remembering where all their clothes were and only putting on the right ones. Some children were even feeling confident enough to help others.

Miss Webster popped in from Nursery and was very impressed with how independent everyone was being.  We showed her the stars we were getting on our Star Cards 🙂

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We all loved PE in the Main Hall. We played a game where one of us had to give instructions to everyone else so they knew how to move. We had to listen very carefully and then think how to move in all the different ways. Can you remember all the different ways we had to move? 

Don’t forget to leave your child’s PE kit in school and then it’ll be there when we need it again next week. Our Hall session for PE is Thursday mornings.

What we have been learning? 

  • To get dressed and undressed ourselves. 
  • To listen to instructions. 
  • To move in different ways. 

How can you continue the learning at home? 

  • Let your child get dressed and undressed themselves- it might take longer but they will get quicker! 
  • Keep practising with tricky zips and buttons. 

 

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Singing in the Rain

We’re really lucky in Foundation Stage this year at Prince Edward Primary. We love playing and learning outside so much our teachers got us some special waterproof clothes so we can play out everyday even on the really rainy days.

It rained this week so we got to try them out. We have to get the waterproof trousers and jackets ourselves and find the wellies which fit. We did a great job of finding all the right sizes and getting ourselves ready. Our teachers only had to help a little bit with the zips. We her friends to help us as well if it gets too tricky.

Then out we went…. its great to be able to go out in the rain and stay dry. We’re even looking forward to the next time it rains.

 

Parent/ carers– please remember the outdoor clothing is only for learning time and we will be unable to let children wear it at lunchtime. There is not enough for everybody. If you would rather your child bring their own wellies then make sure they are named and kept next to your child’s peg. As always write your child’s name in everything!

 

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Storytelling

During the last week of half term we had our Storytelling event for parents and carers. We’d been practising the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar as part of our learning about caterpillars and butterflies so decided this is the story we wanted to tell our grown ups. (Click here to find out more about our caterpillar and butterfly learning)

We went to the Hall first with Diamond class (Nursery) and Garnet class (FS2) and used the Story Map and Makaton actions to help us tell the story. Our grown ups who came were very proud of us and gave us a big clap at the end.

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Then we headed back to the classroom. Our focus this year has been on Maths so we took the opportunity to do some Maths with our parents and carers based on the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We practised knowing and ordering the days of the week. We could then use this to help us retell the story. Some of us didn’t have grown ups there to help us so we had to be independent and complete it on our own. Some of us even took it a step further and used the pictures to help us write the story ourselves on the back.

This is sheet we had to complete and then take home so we could keep on practising the story.

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We also got to take home the story map and the words so we could keep practising. We asked our grown ups what they thought so we can make it even better next time.

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It was lovely to see lots of parents and carers there again. Thank you for coming, the teachers and children really appreciate your support 🙂

What have we been learning? 

  • To confidently tell a story to an audience of adults. 
  • To say the days of the week. 
  • To use the days of the week to help us order the story. 
  • To be independent and cut out and organise an activity ourselves. 

How can you continue the learning at home? 

  • Retell the story together using your story map and story words. 
  • Practise using a big voice and tell some different family members the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. You could even use Skype or FaceTime to tell people you don’t see all the time. We’d love to hear who you’ve been telling the story to, don’t forget to tell us on a Wow moment. 
  • Can you change the story to the story of The Very Hungry Tadpole? What might he eat each day? 

 

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Our New Writing Journals

You might have heard about our new Writing Journals which we keep in our drawers in the classroom. If not ask your child about theirs and have a look in their drawer. Now we’re into the Summer term and starting to get ready for Year One we are practicing our writing more. Every week we have to write in our book at least once, although we can write in it every day if we want to. We can choose to write about anything we want. Every time we write in our book we get a special ‘writing journal’ ticket and it goes in the special box. On Friday we pull out a winner and they get a prize to take home. The more times you’ve written the better your chances of winning!

As you can see we have lots of things to help us when we write. Miss Parker and the other teachers don’t just expect us to have everything saved in our heads just yet!

  • We use a phoneme strip to help us remember our letters and sounds, especially the digraphs we have learnt. Digraphs are sounds with 2 letters such as ai, ee, ow, ar and or. We also learn trigraphs with 3 letters such as igh, ear and air.
  • We use tricky word books marks to help us remember the tricky words we have been practising in our reading such as I, go, no, the, into, she, be, me and my. If we’ve learnt to read them already then our reading can help us to write.
  • We use a sentence hand to help us remember fingers spaces and full stops. These can be hard to remember at first so the hand means we can use it make the space for us, this can be particularly helpful if you are left handed.
  • Finally, we use a sound button which means we can record our sentence before we try and write it. There is so much to remember when were trying to write out ideas down that it helps if the sound button can read our sentence back to us.

If you would like copies of any of these please ask in school and we’ll be able to get you copies of them all apart from the sound button. You could use the voice record function on your smart phone instead though.

At first the writing you see from your child might not look as you expect. This does not mean it is not ‘good’ writing. At first your child may just write letters they know and tell you the words they have written. To you they might not seem to have any links at all. Encourage them to read their writing back to you and praise them for mark making with meaning.

As writing skills develop, children will start to listen to the sounds in words and write the corresponding letters they know. They may miss a lot out to begin with but again this is developing their skills  in the correct direction. They may copy some words they know, such as their friends names.

As the children’s writing skills develop further you will be able to see how they are using some of the tricky words they know and beginning to use finger spaces in their writing. They will still be relying on their phonics skills to sound out (segment) and spell. They may know some other words which they are able to use.

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By the end of the year the age related expectation (ARE) is that FS2 children are writing sentences which can be read back by others. They will still be reliant on phonics to spell but will be showing a better use of tricky words and using more digraphs/trigraphs more accurately. Children will be using finger spaces more and in the correct place. Their sentences will relate to the same subject and continue the story or information. Every child is different though and although these are examples of what children might be writing they are not the only way of doing it. 

If you would like to know more please ask the teachers in school and we can show you more examples and also some of the statements we use to asses writing in Foundation Stage.

What have we been learning? 

  • To write with more independence. 
  • To use our phonics skills to write. 
  • To use the other resources we have in the classroom to write. 

How can you help at home? 

  • Encourage your child to write. If your child is a reluctant writer try to make it relevant, such as them helping you to write the shopping list or writing a letter to the Tooth Fairy or other favourite character. 
  • Allow your child to write independently and then ask them what it says instead of asking them to copy write what you have written. 
  • Use the different resources there are available to help your child write. There is a lot to remember when writing, especially when you’re first starting out! 
  • Bring any writing your child does at home to school and display it on a WOW moment. We’d love to see how well they’re doing.