Sunday, December 03, 2006

Shining Stars and Shimmering Snowflakes!

Weekly update week beginning 4th December 2006

Navidad Feliz (Spanish for Happy Christmas)

Tis' the season to be jolly tralalalala - lalalala...Yes, in my book it is officially Christmas now we are in the twelth month of the year! Wow! What a start the the month we have with a long awaited Christmas Production 'A Christmas Rose'. Many thanks to you all for making sure the costumes were in on time and Mrs Johnson for coming in and checking them and fitting the tinsel to size. I am sure you are looking forward to the performances as much as the children are eager to strut their stuff. However, even the most talented and well-seasoned performers suffer from fatigue after a week of being on the stage. Please expect your child to be tired this week, and it is for this reason that we will not be expecting them to complete their handwriting homework this week.

Here I Am, Knowledge and Understanding of the World and Communication, Language and Literacy
This week we will be combining the children's learning in these three areas. The children will use a text which tells the Christmas Story. Throughout the week, the children will learn about the build up to the birth of Jesus, the angel's visit to Mary and the shepherds, etc. The class target for this week is to share the Christmas Story with your child. Whilst reading our text, the children will learn about the use of the pictures in conjunction with the initial letters in supporting their word identification.

As always we will be developing the children's letter recognition and we are amazed at the progress the children are making in this area of the curriculum. I don't think we have ever moved so swiftly through them. Many thanks for all your support in helping your child at home. Once the children do know them, they will spread their wings and fly!

Mathematical Development
I love this week's topic - pattern making (only because it means more paint, glitter and sequins). Many of the children entered school being able to copy a repeating pattern. Therefore we will be concentrating on developing their ability to continue and create their own repeating pattern. The websites below will be used in class to teach your child and I am more than happy for you to use them at home. - this site can just be used to review the children's ability to copy a pattern. - the children are asked to make patterns with 2d shapes, colours and pictures. - this is an extension of the above one with the children making patterns with 3d shapes.
If your child can do the above and create their own repeating pattern with at least three different colours then the next website will provide a challenge for them. It is actually a Year1 activity! - the children have to solve problems involving patterns. -(with all the letters in this url address I'll be amazed if this link works!) - click on 'simple repeating patterns' under the 'materials' heading on the right hand side.

You can also practice pattern making using the cutlery - knife, fork, spoon etc as well as socks, pencils, blocks etc.

Creative Development
This week is the week when we blitz our Christmas decoration making. The children will be making their very own Christmas baubles, so be sure to leave a space right in the middle of your tree for it. They will also be making a table decoration fit to don even the most decadent of tables as well as making their Christmas cards. You may have noticed that we have gone a little multi-lingual this year. As a school we are trying to develop Spanish as our modern foreign language, and so do not be surprised if your child comes out with the odd phrase or two and the insert of your Christmas card can't be understood! Unfortunately for us the children are picking it up faster than we are!

Musically, the children will be adding musical accompaniment to the song Little Donkey. Mrs Bishop has been working with the infant children to learn Away in a manger and Rat-a-tat-tat for the production. They sound fantastic so many thanks to her. This may be the next song for the children to learn.

Physical Development
Get those scissors out and start making some snowflakes. If you'd like to do one on the computer try out this website: - move the scissors around until the centre turns from red to green and then click. Create the outline by doing this of the shape you want to cut out and then you can see the finished product. My neice loved this one! If you want to be really clever though there is a website that has some great 3d snowflakes. I make one with Olivia, my niece of 6years, and it wasn't too stressful.

Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Many thanks to you for persevering with the children in getting changed on their own. We can see a real improvement. Please carry on though. I'm smiling as I type this, as I know we face the task of getting twenty-two boys into tights this week!

As part of the children learning about their own culture, they will be completing Advent tasks. each window on the calendar has a task for them to do. Last Friday the children had to say thank you every time in spanish. This type of activity will also allow the children to maintain their high standard of discipline and care for one another.

So what is the surprise for the children this week?
A letter will be hanging from our bare Christmas Tree. BOO HOO! The tree is sad and asks that the children make it some decorations and in return it has left a surprise for the children in the box under the tree. It says they can only open the box on Friday after they have done their performances and its Big Brother will be watching them in the hall (aka the Christmas Tree in the school hall).

Can you believe it? I've finished!

Enjoy the week

Best wishes

Jayne Narraway and the Foundation Stage Team x


mrs bishop said...

thank you for the lovely comment but i must say the pleasure has been all mine and the hard work all theirs! they are all wonderful and it is a privilige to be a part of it so thank YOU!

Mrs Narraway's site said...

So...can I pencil you in form next year?