Sunday, May 06, 2007

Is it really a year?

Can you believe that a year ago this week, we were doing what we are doing this week? What’s that you may ask? Believe it or not, this week, we will be preparing for the New Parent Intake meeting. When you pick the children up on Friday, why not pop in and have a browse around the classroom? The children have done some amazing work this year which is shown off to its full advantage.

Here I Am
This week, the children will rejoice and celebrate ‘Energy’. They will have a remembering session about what they have learned about energy, the Promise of the Holy Spirit and the feast of Pentecost. The children will each make a flag with the words of Peter which gave joy and new energy to the people: Jesus is alive!

Communication, Language and Literacy
Last week, the children did a piece of writing following their visit to The Blue Planet Aquarium. We were not only amazed at the quality of their writing, but their attitude to writing. In fact, when I said we were going to do some writing, there was a great big cheer! Not one to pass up on an opportunity to increase their motivation and attitude towards writing, this week also will have a high writing focus. This week, the children will be asked to talk about a holiday they have been on and they will write about it.

By the end of this week, the children:
MUST be able to say a sentence to a friend.
SHOULD know that a sentence requires a full stop and a capital letter and be able to write one with limited support.
COULD be able to write one or more sentences independently.

As we approach the latter part of the school year we really up the stakes when it come to the children’s reading and writing. The high frequency words are vital in developing your child’s fluency in reading. The children’s phonic knowledge is moving at a rapid speed now and their ability to sound out words when writing is fantastic! These websites are little treasures that you can use to support them. - this is a great website for identifying the sounds at the beginning, middle and end of words. - the old favourite. - this website asks you to see how many words you can make - this focuses on high frequency words - this concentrates on the spelling of the high frequency words. You can simply type in the high frequency words that your child needs to work on for them to play the game with. - great for blending sounds together.

If your child is still working on a few of the letter sounds and names, I will be assessing them this week to give you an update on the remaining letter sounds and names.

Mathematical Development
The children are doing great with their understanding of the values of the coins and we are going to practice the use of 1p and 2p coins in our new role play area. The children are going to create a Flower Shop to enable them to use their new skills in paying for items. If you have any unwanted silk flowers that you could donate, we would be really appreciative. - a great website to start with. The children must count the number of 1p coins and then match it to the price on a ticket. However, nothing beats getting the real coins out and asking the children to count the one penny coins. - a great, yet addictive snap game to help the children recognise the coins. - the children must make the price of the item on the tag with a mixture of coins. This is great at the children can start on 1p coins and then begin to introduce 2op coins. - this is for when the week goes on and the children learn how to count totals of up to 10p using a range of 1p, 2p and 5p coins. Worth a practice though. - a little advanced for some children but definitely worth a look towards the end of the week when the children learn how to combine coins to make values.

Although we will continue to look at using money, we will now turn our attention to reviewing the children’s understanding of addition. Last time we did addition, the children really understood the concepts. Therefore, this week, we will be asking them to work a little more independently to answer addition questions. This will prepare them for our work on problem solving next week. Therefore, by the end of the week, the children:

By the end of the week, the children:

MUST be able to practically combine two sets of objects in order to find the total;
SHOULD be able to start for the larger number and count on to find the total of two numbers;
COULD be able to understand that there are many ways of making one total e.g 4+3 is 7 as is 5+2 and 6+1, etc. - great to help your child to review their understanding of addition. Remember to use the vocabulary – plus, add, and, total, the sum of, more, etc. - this is a lovely website for developing those skills of addition. Remember the phrase: COUNT, COUNT, TOGETHER, COUNT. - although this is aimed at Year1/2 I still think some of the children will be able to access it. Why not give it a try?

Why not challenge your child for the COULD target.
You will need:
Two plates
Ten sweets

What to do:
Explain to your child that you have ten sweets and you are wondering which is the fairest way of sharing them. The children need to find as many ways of making a total of 10. Here’s a clue! There are eleven ways.
For example:
Three on one plate and seven on another. Write the sum 3 + 7 = 10

This will not only help their problem-solving but give you an opportunity to practice those all important number formation skills.

Knowledge and Understanding of the World linked to Creative Development
Realism is not something I favour or practice by the looks of things! The fabulous fish are taking a tad longer than we had expected and therefore, we will be continuing with them this week. They are all looking fantastic and I can’t wait to get them dangling from the ceiling. Let’s hope the ceiling stays up!!

Last week, the children also painted under the water scenes using a computer art package. Those children who did not complete theirs will complete it this week.
The children will also be continuing to extend their ability to program the programmable robot called a Beebot. The children will be able to review their understanding of shapes whilst doing so using the mat.

Physical Development
Did the children tell you that Mr Barker donned his shorts and t-shirt and took the children out for football on Friday as part of their Golden Time. It was fab! Mr Barker said how impressed he was with the children’s behaviour and skills during PE. A real credit to Mrs Latham for sure.

Mrs Latham will also be finishing off her sewing with the children. Golly Gosh! We may have some future Jasper Conran’s by the end of the year.

Believe it or not, here endeth this week’s blog.

Have a good week.

Kind regards
Jayne Narraway and the Foundation Stage Team xxxxxx

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