Milne

Reception

We are Reception Milne class. Our teacher is Mrs Francis, our Early Years Educator is Mrs Barrett and our Learning Support Assistant is Miss Anya.

Due to requests from parents we have now uploaded a whole week’s worth of home learning in case parents need to be more flexible with how they and their children are working from home. If you are able to, we suggest that it is best to complete one day’s worth of learning at a time, and remember to complete each day in order as activities will feed into each other and build on the skills covered in the previous days. Thank you!

Class Updates

Advice for parents about home learning

Dear Parents and Carers,

 

As this new week starts you are probably finding yourself in the unusual situation of having to educate your child at home. Until we have all had some time to process what is happening in the world right now, you may be finding it quite difficult to think about how this is going to work. Some of you will, quite rightly, have to prioritise other things at the moment: family, work, health. In these early days try to not worry too much about your child’s ‘education’, and instead focus on their emotional wellbeing. For some families that may mean trying to keep life as normal as possible and doing ‘school work’ at home, sticking to their routine and ‘keeping calm and carrying on’! For other families you may need to take some time to destress and relax as a family, and then start up with the home learning when you are ready. The blogs will all stay up so please don’t worry about falling behind.

 

We cannot stress enough that there is no expectation for you to complete all of the home learning tasks that we set. They are there to hopefully occupy your child and provide a little bit of school ‘normality’. Please do as little or as much as you and your child feel able to. Bear in mind that this will vary day to day. At school (even after many years of teaching!) we still have days when, despite having the best intentions and the most fun and engaging activities planned, the children just aren’t feeling it, or there’s a disaster over who has the ‘good’ pink felt tip, or just for some reason the stars don’t align! It can be really frustrating to feel that you aren’t making much progress but, as we have learnt, 95% of teaching is about praising their effort, listening and showing interest, and asking the children questions about what they think. There is no point battling with your child about completing work. I’m sure that you already know this from experience but I can tell you that they will always win; they have the time to be more stubborn than you are! Instead praise their effort as much as you can, and on trickier days try to catch them doing something positive to praise. You know your child better than anyone, and I am sure that you already know what works and doesn’t with regards to their behaviour. But if you would like any suggestions on ways to motivate your child to complete some learning at home please just drop us an email.

 

It may help to draw up a daily routine, either sticking to a similar model or adapting it so that you have time to complete your work or things that you need to as well. Below is our daily routine at school, in case you wanted to stick to that. You may want to stick up the ‘visual timetable’ like we do at school so that your child knows what is happening, or even ask them to draw their own picture cards for each activity to make their own. If you would like the full set of timetable cards just send us an email. Please bear in mind that we would not expect children to be doing ‘learning’ for long periods of time as, even during a normal day, learning sessions are kept to a maximum of 20 to 30 minutes and interspersed with time for children to play freely and relax. And remember it is fine for your child to be ‘bored’ and have to entertain themselves, boredom breeds creativity!

 

Your child may not remember all of the ‘learning’ that you taught them while we are all away from school. But they will remember the time that you spent together. So, when you can, have fun with them and build a blanket tent, make up a game or play imaginatively together. Have a cuddle and read books. Children are very resilient and they will be fine, they may even remember this as an exciting time!

 

Keep us posted,

 

Love Mrs Francis and Miss Billington x

 

Logging in via myUSO

You will have received a letter via Parent Mail about logging on to the online area via myUSO. Your child will need their username and password. Through this you can access many different online programs. The one we will be using the most in Reception is Busy Things. Each week we will pin activities to the top of your child’s homepage, for example ‘Monday Maths activity’. Please see the daily blog post for an explanation of each task, and for other activities as not all will be via Busy Things. If you are having trouble logging in don’t worry, in these early days it may be that the websites are struggling due to high traffic as everyone switches over to online learning. Tapestry may also be experiencing high levels of users as well, so if it is not working for you please just try again a little later.

 

Normal school timetable

Structure of a usual day:

Register, Literacy, Choosing/ Playing, Fruit, Maths, Choosing/ Playing, Tidy up, Prayer, Lunch, Outside play, Phonics/ Handwriting, Choosing/ Playing, Tidy up, Story, Prayer, Home time

 

Monday

Music with Miss Rachel, Kick London with Alastair

 

Thursday

Library with Mrs Pereira

 

Friday

Gymnastics

Staying connected

In these strange and ever-changing times it would be lovely to stay connected with you and the children. They might like to send us video messages, photos of what they’ve been up to or of their drawings, or just send us a message or a question. The easiest way for us to see their photos and videos will be via Tapestry. Please see the section below for tips and advice on logging on to your child’s Tapestry account and how to upload an ‘observation’. We may also send messages to your child through Tapestry so keep an eye out for any new observations from us!
During the school closure we will be updating the blog daily with a few activities for your child to complete at home. You will receive a letter explaining how to access the online area via ‘myUSO’. We will be using ‘Busy Things’ and other resources to set some simple online activities as well as setting some more open-ended practical challenges for your child to explore.
This is an unprecedented time in many different ways and we fully appreciate that many parents will not have the time, childcare or resources to complete these activities every day. Please do not feel under any pressure. These activities and challenges are there for you to use as much  as you want to, and to hopefully help keep your child occupied and provide some degree of normality in the highly unusual situation we are facing.
If you have questions about their learning at home, the tasks that we have set for each day or accessing the online resources then please do not hesitate to drop us an email. For questions regarding home learning or online access then please cc in both Miss Billington and myself; then whichever of us is available will get back to you as soon as we can. Or even if you want a chat or your child wants to tell us something then please stay in touch. We are blessed to have such a strong community at St. Stephen’s and, having been lucky enough to have been a part of it for many years now, we have seen how families and staff can support each other through difficult times.
When you feel ready, we would suggest that you gather the pens, pencils, paper etc that you have in your home already, and have a think about a quiet space in your home where your child may be able to do their learning. We also fully appreciate that not all families have access to technology. Please contact us if you are finding using technology difficult and we will try to assist as best we can. Many families will also have multiple children trying to use the same laptop or computer, and so it may be necessary to draw up a quick timetable to prevent frustration and keep the peace! Children should also be encouraged to spend quiet time drawing, looking at books that you may already have in your home as well as spending time playing with their toys, away from screens. We would not expect children to be doing ‘learning’ for long periods of time as, even during a normal day, learning sessions are kept to a maximum of 20 to 30 minutes and interspersed with time for children to play freely and relax.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to email us (please cc us both in – r.francis@ststephensce.lbhf.sch.uk and t.billington@ststephensce.lbhf.sch.uk).
Best wishes,
Mrs Francis and Miss Billington

Using Tapestry to stay connected

 

You can access your child’s Tapestry account through the website https://tapestryjournal.com in your usual web browser, or by downloading the Tapestry app for either Apple or Android. If you have not yet activated your account you will have received a new activation email. This will have been sent to the email address that you provided us with back in the summer before your child started school. If you are having issues with activating your account or logging in then please contact us.

 

If using Tapestry through the website then click the blue ‘add observation’ button in the top right.  Then complete the sections as shown below to add your observation. Don’t forget to click the blue ‘save’ button at the top or bottom right to save your observation.

If accessing Tapestry through the app please log in and tap the + symbol in the top right corner. Then complete the sections as shown below, remembering to tap ‘upload’ to finish and save your observation.

 

 

Tapestry has a upload limit of 100MB for videos. This means that depending on the file type of your video, you may not be able to upload longer videos. We suggest that if you find that you are having problems with uploading, that you try recording the video within the Tapestry app, as when it reaches the maximum capacity it will cut out. Then if needed you will be able to start a new video clip and upload your message in chunks. If you are having technical problems with Tapestry please contact us and again we will try our best to help!

 

 

Home Learning - Monday 30th March

Happy Monday everyone!

We hope everyone is well and has had a nice weekend. This week we will be thinking about the story ‘The Three Little Pigs’ for Literacy and will be also be looking at ‘time’ and ‘money’ in Maths. We have also posted some links below for some other activities you may want to try this week.

 

Well done everyone. Keep up the good work! Please don’t forget to post all of your hard work to Tapestry! 

 

Mindfulness

https://www.youtube.com/results?sp=mAEB&search_query=cosmic+yoga

Physical Activity

https://www.youtube.com/user/thebodycoach1/featured

Story Time

https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/stories?page=2

10 minute Crafts

https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/makes/lets-go-club-ten-minute-crafts?collection=the-lets-go-club-craft-activities

 

Please note that when filming videos for Tapestry it is best to go into the app and film via the ‘record video’ button. This allows the video to go directly into an observation and also stops any ‘maximum file size’ issues.

Literacy

Watch ‘Cat and Dog’ retell the story of the ‘The Three Little Pigs’ on BusyThings.

https://www.busythings.co.uk/lgfl-login/

With your grown up or your brother or sister discuss the story and then answer the following things.

Who are the characters Cat and Dog are playing in the story?

What happens at the beginning of the story?

What’s the main ‘problem’ in the story?

How is the  ‘problem’ resolved?

Can you name the materials the 3 little pigs used?  Where might you see and use each of these materials?

Why do you think it was easy to blow down the straw and wooden houses but not the brick one?

 

What would the little pig’s mummy feel about the wolf trying to blow the pig’s houses down?

 

* Literacy Super challenge* Can you retell the story? Pretend that you have an audience. Can you sound like the characters when they are speaking? What might each character sound like? Are they happy, mean, kind or cross?  What expressions might their face be pulling? Make a little film of yourself retelling the story and put it on to tapestry.

Maths task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your jobs are pinned as Monday Maths task 1 and 2. First put the number cards in the correct order. Then play again and this time put them in the correct place, but without starting with the number 1 card. Work your way across the line, for example in my game the order is 7, 8, 9, 5, 1 etc,  so starting with 7, then 8, then, 9 and so on! Which spot will each number need to go in?

Now do your other Maths task. Can you count the number of food items in each picture and place them in the correct order? To make it trickier you could try again, without starting from 1! You grown-up, or your brother or sister, could choose which food to do first! E.g. “Start with the grapes.” Which spot will each food need to go in?

*Maths super challenge*

Can you make your own number line out of toys, objects or other things that you have in your house? Can you put them in a line from the smallest amount, to the largest amount? Can you put your number cards next to each group to show how many there are?

 

Challenge

Do you know how to play ‘What’s the time, Mr Wolf?’. If not your grown-up can look here https://www.wikihow.com/Play-What%27s-the-Time-Mr-Wolf for the instructions! Remember to be careful if you are moving around inside, and make sure there is nothing you can break in the way. We don’t want anyone to get hurt! If you are playing inside you might need to take tiny steps, by placing your feet heel to toe as you step, so that you don’t run out of space. And, Mr Wolf, don’t forget that you’re not allowed to peek!

Love Mrs Francis x

Home learning - Friday 27th March

Good morning Reception!

 

Here are today’s jobs:

 

Literacy task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your job is pinned as Friday Literacy task. Sound out and blend each word to read the caption. Then put the correct object in the right place. Can you spot any special friends or Red Words?

 

E.g.

 

*Literacy super challenge* – Get your sound charts and Red Word mats out from your homework pack. Each time you spot one put a coin, or a counter (or any small object!) on top of it. How many did you find?! Did you find any special friends that aren’t on your sound chart?

Maths task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your job is pinned as Friday Maths task. Some numbers are missing. Can you click on the numbers in the right order? Which number is the smallest and comes first? What is one more than that number?

 

*Maths super challenge* – Get your number cards out from your homework pack and cut them up if you haven’t done so already. Mix them up and take out 5 from the pack. Even though some numbers will be missing can you put them in the right order? Take a picture to show us on Tapestry!

 

Challenge!

See what pens, pencils, or paints you might have in your house. Can you draw or paint a picture of a really scary troll? I am looking forward to seeing them all!

 

Story time

 

[Grown ups – If you would rather read the story to your child yourself just mute the video and pause as necessary!]

 

Have a lovely weekend Reception,

Love Mrs Francis x

Home learning - Thursday 26th March

Good morning Reception!

 

Here are today’s jobs:

 

Literacy task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your job is pinned as Thursday Literacy task. Watch Cat and Dog acting out the story and then put the pictures in the right order.

 

*Literacy super challenge* – Can you draw pictures to show what happened at the beginning, in the middle and at the end of The Three Billy Goats Gruff? Maybe you could even have a go at writing some words or a short idea to go with your pictures to explain what is happening! Send us a picture on Tapestry. Remember the steps for writing a sentence…

 

 

  1. Think of your idea
  2. Make sure it isn’t too long! Your grown up can help you make it a bit shorter.
  3. Say it and clap it a few times to help you remember what your idea is! One clap for each word.
  4. What is your first word? Write it down. If it is a Red Word look on your Red Word mat. If it isn’t then just have a go at sounding it out, it doesn’t matter if you can’t hear all the sounds. Remember that your first word will need a capital letter at the start, as it is the start of a new idea!
  5. Each time you write a word go back and read what you have written, and then see which word comes next. Remember to leave a gap (an invisible o/ a secret circle!) between each word so that they don’t bump together!
  6. When you have finished writing down all your words do a little dot for a full stop to show that your idea is finished.

 

Maths task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your job is pinned as Thursday Maths task. Can you carry on the pattern by painting the monster and making him the right size. Remember to look and see which part of the pattern is repeating, to help you find out what might come next. How many monsters are in the part that repeats? Say or ‘read’ the pattern to yourself to help you think about what might come next.

 

E.g. 3 men in the repeating part. “Little red, little red, big yellow… Little red, little red, big yellow… Little red, little red, big yellow… Little red…”

*Maths super challenge* – Can you draw a picture of one of the patterns you completed? Send us a picture on Tapestry.

 

Challenge!

In the story there is a little goat. A baby goat is called a kid. What other baby animal names do you know? Do you know what these baby animals are called? Ask grown up to help you look online if you are not sure.

What is your favourite animal? Find out what its babies are called and then draw a picture and write an idea or a label to show what the adult and baby animals are called! Send us a picture on Tapestry.

 

Love Mrs Francis x

Home learning - Wednesday 25th March

Good Morning Reception!

 

Here are today’s jobs:

 

Literacy task

Watch the video of The Three Billy Goats Gruff again.

 

Can you write an idea about what one of the characters says? Use your Red Word mat from your homework pack to help you write Red Word ‘said’.

Do all of these steps to write your idea successfully!

 

  1. Think of your idea – e.g. The little billy goat gruff said “You don’t want to eat me!”
  2. Make sure it isn’t too long! Your grown up can help you make it a bit shorter – e.g. The goat said “Don’t eat me!”
  3. Say it and clap it a few times to help you remember what your idea is! Once for each word – e.g. The goat said don’t eat me = 6 claps.
  4. What is your first word? Write it down. If it is a Red Word look on your Red Word mat. If it isn’t then just have a go at sounding it out, it doesn’t matter if you can’t hear all the sounds. Remember that your first word will need a capital letter at the start, as it is the start of a new idea!
  5. Each time you write a word go back and read what you have written, and then see which word comes next. Remember to leave a gap (an invisible o/ a secret circle!) between each word so that they don’t bump together!
  6. When you have finished writing down all your words do a little dot for a full stop to show that your idea is finished.
  7. Then take a picture and send it to us on Tapestry!

 

[Grown ups]

At this point we are not worried at all about spelling (except for the Red Words from the Red Word mat) or punctuation. It is all about building confidence in writing and having a go! Please just support your child in  sounding out the words as best they can. Not all children will have learnt all the sounds and so they may need some help to identify them on the sound mats. (The sound mats, and Red Word mats are in the pack for children that we gave you in case of a school closure. If you do not have this please email us and we will forward it on as a pdf.)

Also lots of children find it hard to distinguish between the sounds t and r at the beginning of the word troll and the sound ch. If they write chrol or even chol that is an excellent attempt at a difficult word!

Their sentence may look a little like this…

or like this…

Some children may be finding it hard to chop words into sounds or to write an idea down, take the lead from your child and see how they get on. If you have any concerns or would like to know what we would usually expect from them please email us.

 

Maths task

In the story there is a small goat, a medium-sized goat and a large goat. Can you find anything in your house which is small, medium and large? How about socks, teddies, books or spoons? Can you put the right label next to each one?

Challenge!

Listen to this Listen and Play episode about The Three Billy Goats Gruff  https://www.bbc.co.uk/teach/school-radio/eyfs-listen-and-play-billy-goats-gruff/zr3yt39 Is it different to the story that we watched? How is it the same? How is it a little bit different?

 

Love Mrs Francis x

Home learning - Tuesday 24th March

Good morning Reception!

 

How did you get on with your jobs yesterday? I loved looking at some of your pictures and videos on Tapestry yesterday!

 

Here are today’s jobs:

 

Literacy task

Log in via myUSO and go to Busy Things. Your job is pinned as Tuesday Literacy task. Watch the story of Cat and Dog acting out the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Their story is a little bit different, can you spot anything that is different to the story we watched yesterday?

 

Now, can you have a go at acting out the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff? You could find something to wear in your house to pretend to be each character, and maybe even ask your brother, sister or grown up to be one of the characters! What does each character say? Or you could find toys in your house to pretend to be the different characters. You could even pretend your teddies are the goats or a spoon is the troll – use your imagination! Maybe you could even use the bridge that you made yesterday.

 

If your grown up has time they could put a video of you acting out the story on Tapestry.

 

*Literacy super challenge* – Can you design a costume that you could wear to act out The Three Billy Goats Gruff? Which character would you be? What would that character need to wear? Can you label the different parts of your costume?

 

Maths task

In class we have been learning about how numbers can have other, smaller numbers inside them. How many green counters are there altogether? Can you see any other smaller numbers inside? I can see a 5! How many different other numbers can  you spot?

 

Today we would like you to look in your bedroom or ask your grown up to help you find 15 small things. They could be small toys, pebbles, buttons, coins, or anything that is small and you can count! Then spread them out in a pile on the floor or on a table. Can you count them all? Can you see any smaller numbers inside your pile?

 

*Maths super challenge* – Go to Busy Things and play the pink men game again from yesterday. Each time the pink men drop onto the islands can you spot any smaller numbers hiding inside the group? Can you draw a picture and draw circles around the numbers that you found. How many pink men do you have altogether in your picture?

 

E.g.

 

Challenge!

 

Can you draw and cut out some puppets to act out the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff? You could stick them onto sticks, or maybe Blu tack them onto spoons. Can you draw a background for your puppets to act in front of? What is the setting of The Three Billy Goats Gruff? [Remember the setting is the place that the story is – is it at the beach? Or in space?]

 

Send us a picture of your puppets and your background on Tapestry!

 

Love Mrs Francis x

Home learning - Monday 23rd March

Dear parents and carers,

 

You will need to log in via myUSO https://my.uso.im/  (the red ‘USO log in’ button) with your child’s myUSO log in details. Then go to Busy Things.  If you are having any problems logging in, or have any questions about the learning tasks then please email (please cc us both in r.francis@ststephensce.lbhf.sch.uk and t.billington@ststephensce.lbhf.sch.uk) and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Your child does not need to do all the tasks at once! They are labelled by day and subject. Please keep an eye on the blog as we will be posting all communication here, including some tips and advice for learning from home and how to support your child in the highly unusual situation we all find ourselves in.

Take care, Mrs Francis x

Good morning Reception!

 

This week we will be basing our learning on The Three Billy Goats Gruff. This is an old story that your mummy or daddy might know already. Did they read it when they were little or is it new for both of you?

 

Each day we will give you some jobs to do: a Literacy task (about stories, reading or writing), a Maths task (about counting, numbers, shapes or patterns) and a Challenge!

 

Here are today’s jobs:

 

Literacy task

Watch this video of the story ‘The Three Billy Goats Gruff’. Then ask your grown up, or big brother or sister, to read you the questions and see if you can answer them. Have a think about how you know the answer. Is it something the characters said? Is it something you can see in the video? Some questions are about what you think and there isn’t a right or wrong answer! Why do you think that?

Who are the characters in the story?

 

How do you think Little Billy Goat Gruff felt when they realised that they had eaten all the grass on their side of the river?

 

What is a meadow? What does vile mean? How could you find out what new words mean if you don’t know?

[ask an adult, look in a dictionary, ask an adult to help you look online in a safe place]

 

Why didn’t the troll want to let the Little Billy Goat Gruff cross the bridge?

 

Do you think Middle Billy Goat Gruff really wanted the troll to eat Big Billy Goat Gruff because he would make the best meal?

[I think that the Little Billy Goat Gruff and the Middle Billy Goat Gruff knew that the Big Billy Goat Gruff would be able to knock the troll off of the bridge because he has the biggest horns!]

 

Do you think the troll was greedy? Why?

 

*Literacy super challenge* – You could have a go at writing down what you think about the story or your favourite part. Remember to clap each word in your idea and then sound them out. Use your phonics sound mats to help you find the sounds you need and don’t worry if you’re not sure… Just have a listen and write down what you can hear! Send us a picture of your writing on Tapestry.

 

If your grown up has time they could post your answers to some of the questions as an observation on Tapestry.

 

Maths task

Your Maths job for today is on Busy Things, pinned as Monday Maths task. You will need to listen to the question, sometimes it will ask you how many pink men are on the yellow island, sometimes it will ask you how many are on the green island and sometimes it will ask you how many there are altogether! Count them carefully, touching one at a time and saying each number slowly in order. Then click on the right number!

 

*Maths super challenge* – Can you write an equation to show how many there are on each island and how many there are together? First practice saying it and then write it down using numbers and symbols.

 

e.g. “3 plus 1 is equal to 4”       e.g. 3 + 1 = 4

Challenge!

In the story the troll lived under a bridge. We learnt about building bridges during DT day recently. Do you have anything in your house that you could use to build a bridge? Maybe you have Lego or blocks, or you could ask your grown up if you can use some of the boxes or bottles from your recycling box? Can you make a pretend ‘river’? What could you use? I used a stinky old sock for the river and my teddy as the troll!

 

Send us a picture of your bridge on Tapestry! What did you use? Can you draw a plan of it and label the different things that you used?

 

Looking forward to seeing your pictures Reception!

 

Love Mrs Francis x

Video message - Friday 20th March

Hello!

Jelly bean game

Runner beans – run on the spot

Jumping beans – jump on the spot

String beans – reach up and make yourself as tall as skinny as you can

Broad beans – make yourself as wide as you can in a star shape

Jelly beans – wobbly like a jelly

Baked beans – curl up in a ball on the floor

French beans – say ‘oh la la!’

Frozen beans – freeze on the spot

 

Here is a video from Cosmic Yoga. I hope you have fun relaxing, stretching your body and doing the ‘foot phone’!

Much love,

Mrs Francis x

PS Yesterday I forgot to say that plants also need carbon dioxide to grow, as well as sunshine, soil and water. Carbon dioxide is a gas that you can’t see in the air, like oxygen. Humans breathe in oxygen, which goes through your lungs and into your blood. Plants don’t really ‘breathe’ as they don’t have lungs, but the carbon dioxide goes into their leaves through tiny holes!

Video message - Thursday 19th March

Hello!

In this video I asked you what plants need to grow. There was one more thing that I forgot to mention… Can you figure out what it might be? I’ll tell you tomorrow!

Also here is a video of someone else’s prayer plant. They have a special camera which takes a video and makes it much faster so you can see how the plant is moving, even thought it happens very slowly. You can see outside the window when it is day or night!

Much love,

Mrs Francis x

 

Video message from Mrs Francis!

Please follow the link to my video message on YouTube!

I hope you are all well,

Much love, Mrs Francis

 

Useful links for families who are self-isolating

We understand that some families are needing to self-isolate at this time. Below are some links which may be useful for your children to access whilst at home. We also suggest that if your child is well, they should continue to practise their Red Words, letter formation and counting and should play some simple mathematically based board games and read stories regularly if possible.

Red Words

Red words 13 March.

Primary Games

Oxford Owl
Educational Games
Cbeebies

NRich – Maths

https://nrich.maths.org/13371

Numberblocks

https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/shows/numberblocks

Twinkl – Parent Resource pack

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/resource/eyfs-school-closure-home-learning-resource-pack-t-tp-2549362

BBC School Radio

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/5RMpbn1X8tMkMQgw0GRhz8L/early-years-foundation-stage-eyfs

Cosmic Yoga

https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga

National Geographic Kids

https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/category/discover/

We understand that some families are needing to self-isolate at this time. Below are some links which may be useful for your children to access whilst at home. We also suggest that if your child is well, they should continue to practise their Red Words, letter formation and counting and should play some simple mathematically based board games and read stories regularly if possible.

Red Words

Red words 13 March.

Primary Games

Oxford Owl
Educational Games

NRich – Maths

https://nrich.maths.org/13371

Numberblocks

https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/shows/numberblocks

Twinkl – Parent Resource pack

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/resource/eyfs-school-closure-home-learning-resource-pack-t-tp-2549362

BBC School Radio

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/5RMpbn1X8tMkMQgw0GRhz8L/early-years-foundation-stage-eyfs

Cosmic Yoga

https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga

National Geographic Kids

https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/category/discover/

If you would like to do any independent work following up on things we have learnt in class (write a story, make a poster, do some research), that is great and you can bring them in to share when you’re back again. These activities are not compulsory and obviously you need not do them if you are feeling ill.
Hopefully things will be back to normal soon but, if we are forced to close the school, we will be posting a more comprehensive educational program and providing all children with their USO logins so that they can access more specific activities set by their teachers.
Thank you for your continued support.

Friday 13th March

This week we’ve based our learning on Jack and the Beanstalk. We read a lovely version by Nick Sharratt and Stephen Tucker. In groups we discussed the story and the children had so many amazing ideas about how the characters might be feeling, why things happened, and even how their own mums and dads might feel if they climbed up a giant beanstalk off into the sky! We talked about how stories have a beginning, a middle and an end. We sequenced the main events from the story and then drew pictures of our favourite part, in the style of Nick Sharratt! Next week we will be discussing the characters and thinking of some adjectives to describe them, as well as coming up with our own alternative endings!

Homework

This week’s Red Words are:

Please also check the homework folders for numeral formation homework for 5, 6 and 7.

Wishing you all a peaceful weekend,

Mrs Francis

Friday 6th March

We’ve had lots of fun during Arts Week. We had a fantastic storytelling workshop with Storytree and then enjoyed a fun drama session with the one and only Mr Schumm! We also were excited to visit Miss Whiting for an energetic dance session and then saw Miss Bell for a lovely storytime. In between all this we have been exploring Gustav Klimt’s painting ‘The Tree of Life’ and talking about the patterns that we could see. We found out where spirals occur in nature, from tiny snails to giant galaxies! Then we made our own leaves and decorated them with patterns, spirals and drawings of our families to add to a giant Reception mural. Come to the Arts Cafe next Friday after school to see our work, and find out what the rest of the school has been up to!

Thank you for all your amazing effort on World Book Day. The costumes looked fantastic and we all had lots of fun discussing our characters and our favourite books! We wrote sentences about who we were dressed up as and I am so impressed with how well the children are getting on with their writing, keep it up Reception!

This week we also planted our seed potatoes, which have been chitting for a few weeks. See if your child can remember what chitting means! We talked about what they need to grow and how some vegetables grow under the ground.

Homework

This week’s Red Words are:

We have also been talking about the Red Word ‘a’ (meaning one) e.g. A cat on a mat. We talked about how some people say just an ‘a’ sound, some people say ‘ay’ like the letter name, and some people make more of an ‘uh’ sound. We also talked about the Red Word ‘love’.

Red Words 6 March

Please keep practising all the other Red Words we’ve learnt so far. You could also have a go at writing them!

There is no handwriting homework this week. Instead we have sent home a fun phonics board game for you to play together. You will need to find some small objects to use as counters, and a dice to roll to see how many spaces to move along the track. In class we have been learning about how to play board games, especially taking turns to roll the dice and move forward the correct number of spaces. Don’t forget to shout stop when your partner reaches their number! And don’t count the space that you already started on. For each word that you land on, sound out and blend the sounds to hear the word that it says. The winner is the first person to reach the end. In class we talked about being a good ‘player’ and how the excitement of games comes from not knowing if you are going to win or not – if you always win (or always lose) it’s not as fun! We also talked about how if you are a good sport then people will want to play with you again. Please upload a quick photo of your child playing on Tapestry so we can see how you got on – thanks!

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

Friday 28th February

It seems that the children have all grown up so much over the half term break! This week we have been focusing on writing our ideas in simple sentences and remembering to leave gaps between each word so that they don’t bump together. These gaps should be the size of a ‘o’ and so we have been prompting the children to leave an ‘invisible o’ between their words.

They wrote about what they got up to over the holidays and it was fantastic to see how confident many of the children are with having a go at sounding out words. We have also been using the Red Word cards to make sure that we spell these correctly.

This week we have, of course, been talking lots about pancakes and read the book ‘Mr Wolf’s Pancakes’. We talked about how to be a kind friend and what to do if someone is not treating you nicely. The children also decorated paper ‘pancakes’ and wrote a sentence about which toppings they wanted on their pancake.

 

In RE we found out about Palm Sunday and the children made their own palm leaves. They were very keen to have their own special ‘parade’!

Next week we will be taking part in our whole school Arts Week based on a painting by Gustav Klimt. We have lots of fun activities planned, including World Book Day on Thursday. We look forward to seeing the children all dressed up as their favourite book character!

Homework

This week’s Red Words are:

Please keep practising all the other Red Words too!  Red Words 28 Feb

 

For handwriting please practise writing the numbers 3 and 4. See the sheet in the homework folder for details.

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

 

Friday 14th February

And just like that… we are somehow halfway through the year already. It has flown by!

In Literacy this week we have been focusing on writing captions for pictures and remembering to leave gaps between words so that they don’t bump together. Some of us have even been making up our own ideas and having a go at writing them down by listening for the sounds in each word.

In Maths this week we have continued our work on addition and have been using number tracks to organise our counters when adding. We talked about how you can’t leave any gaps in the line of counters and that you must start at 1, adding each counter to the next number. We found out that instead of counting them all you can just have a sneaky peek under the last counter in the line to find out the total! We then had a go at both reading and solving some simple addition number sentences. E.g. 2 + 3 = … “Two plus three is equal to….” Finally we then played the penguin adding game and challenged our partners to write a number sentence to show what had happened… very grown up stuff!

On Thursday we took part in DT Day and learnt all about different types of bridges. The children did a great job of designing and building their own bridges to span a river!

Homework

Handwriting homework is now all about numbers! In the homework folders there is the new handwriting sheet for 0, 1 and 2. Please check for details on how to form these correctly.

For homework over the half term holidays please keep practising all the Red Words, both old and new! If your child can recognise them all then have a go at writing them from memory. The more that children can quickly recall how to write these words the more fluent their writing will become.

In the homework folders you will find your child’s 2D shape assessment. In this assessment we also included some irregular shapes which can not just be ‘recognised’. Please remind your child that you cannot guess what to call each shape, but you should count the number of sides or corners, before deciding what it is! E.g. 5 sides = a pentagon, 6 sides = a hexagon, 8 sides = an octagon. Don’t worry if your child has struggled with these trickier shapes, just keep practising at home. However all children should be able to spot and name circles, triangles, squares and rectangles. Thank you!

Also we would love it if the children could draw us a picture of something fun that they got up to in the holidays. They could have a go at writing a simple caption to go with their drawing, e.g. I went to the park. Some words will not be spelt correctly as we are still learning how to write all the sounds, e.g. ‘park’ may be written as ‘puk’ or ‘prk’ which is perfectly fine at this stage. Just encourage your child to write down all and any of the sounds that they can hear in the word – it’s all about confidence!

Over the holidays please could you all have a good look in your wardrobes and laundry baskets for any spare clothes, pants, socks or PE kit that your child may have borrowed from school. Our stock is completely empty! Thank you so much.

Have a lovely half term break and we will see you back at school soon!

Mrs Francis

Friday 7th February

We are absolutely flying with our learning at the moment in Reception! In Literacy we have been working on reading short sentences. We learnt about capital letters and how we will see one at the start of a sentence. We talked about how the capital letters still make the same sound as the lower case letters, and that we should sound them out if they are in a word. We talked about how when I is on its own it is a Red Word, but if it has other sounds next to it then we should sound it out as an ‘i’. E.g. When the word ‘It’ is at the start of a sentence!

We read sentences about polar bears and decided if they were true, or if they were a load of rubbish! The children were great at this and loved finding the silly ‘rubbish’ sentences!

In Maths this week we have been focusing on addition. We used a ‘part whole model’ to organise our counters when playing a penguin adding game and practised saying our star sentences “… is a part and … is a part”. We then learnt how to push all the counters into the larger circle and count them all to find the total, saying “there are … altogether”. We then introduced the words ‘plus’ and ‘is equal to’ to say a number sentence. E.g. 2 plus 3 is equal to 5.” Next week we will be continuing with addition and this time organising our counters onto a number track, before learning how to write simple number sentences using symbols. E.g. 2 + 3 = 5… very grown up!

In RE this week we talked about neighbours and how we can look after the people around us. We discussed how neighbours are not just the people who live next door to you but all the people who are in our local community, including everyone at our school! We talked about how not all neighbours are friendly and if we ever want to talk to someone it is best to ask our mums and dads or those we know if it is OK first. We then made paper dolls of ourselves and some of our neighbours and talked about ways to care for them, such as saying hello.

Today we took part in our school Coding Day and went to a fun assembly run by some of our very own St. Stephen’s parents who are real-life coders! The children learnt about how coding is all about solving problems, spotting patterns and giving instructions. Back in class we completed some fun activities including continuing some repeating shape patterns, “programming” our friends to navigate a maze, and programming the Beebots to move to a particular location.

Homework

These are our new Red Words:

Please keep practising all the other ones that we have learnt so far!

Our handwriting letters this week are x and z. Please see the homework folder for further details.

Next week we will be assessing the children on their recognition of the 2D shapes that we have been learning. Please practise these again with your child at home, remembering to count the number of sides or corners first to determine what to call the shape.

2D shapes homework

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

 

Friday 31st January

Wow – what a jam-packed week we’ve had in Milne class! We have squeezed in so much learning and we are all so proud of how well the children are getting on, and how interested and engaged they are in their learning – well done Reception!

In Maths this week we have been working hard on recognising those tricky ‘teen’ numbers 11-15. We have been practising our counting out skills and making sure to stop at the correct number. We made our own counting bead strings which the children are bringing home for homework! More details below… The children have been great at working with their partners during Maths sessions and practising saying their ‘star sentences’ e.g. “The big part is 10, the small part is 5, altogether there are 15!” We also began working on some simple addition and really enjoyed playing a game with a partner where each person took turns to roll a dice and count out the correct number of counters, before working together to count them all to find the total.

In Phonics we have been focusing on blending sounds to hear the word, and reading some short captions. We’ve also been working on clapping out the words in an idea we want to write down and then remembering to leave spaces between the words so that they don’t bump into each other!

In RE this week we talked about how we can all look after our world and keep it nice. The children made thank you cards to the various people who help to look after our school and keep it clean and tidy. Hopefully this enthusiasm will also apply in keeping their bedrooms tidy!

We also learnt about Chinese New Year and read some lovely stories set in China. The children have really enjoyed playing in our Chinese restaurant role play area and talking about their favourite foods! We found out about lantern festivals and then made our own paper lanterns to decorate.

Homework

This week our new Red Words are:

Please keep practising all the Red Words that we have taught so far.

Our handwriting letters this week are v and w, from the ‘zig-zag monster’ family. Please see the homework folder for details on how to form these correctly.

Tapestry Counting Homework

This week we would also like you to practise some counting with your child and upload a quick photo and comment to their Tapestry account so that we can see how they got on!

In their homework folder you will find the counting bead string that we made this week. Please keep this in their homework folder as they will need to use it again for future homework.  Please support your child in recognising the ‘teen’ numbers below and then counting out one bead at a time until they reach their ‘stop number’ and shout “Stop!” Then practise counting how many beads are in the big part (one colour) and how many are in the small part (the other colour!).

E.g. For 13, count out thirteen beads and say “Stop!” at 13. Count the orange beads and say “There are 10 beads in the big part”. Count the blue beads and say “There are 3 beads in the small part”. Then count how many there are altogether again (to check!) and say “There are 13 beads altogether!”. Then repeat for all the other numbers.

If your child struggles with counting correctly through the teens numbers don’t worry and just support them with saying the numbers in the correct order… practise makes perfect as they say!

Thank you!

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

 

Friday 24th January

This week we have been looking further at how to write a simple sentence. The progress that is being made is really noticeable and with a little support the children are producing some super stuff. This week we have been checking to see what Red Words the children may need a little recap on. Please check your child’s bag for the slip which tells you which ones need a little more work. It is very important that your child learns all of these words, as without them your child will struggle when reading and writing sentences.  Please display them somewhere within your child’s eye line (maybe on a fridge or cupboard) and please try to make learning them as fun as possible (snap, pairs, Red Word hunt, splat!) as well as frequently reading over them quickly with your child.

In maths we are still looking at 2D shapes and thinking about their properties. The children have had the opportunity to make shape pictures and go on a shape hunt. We have also been looking at how to accurately count up to 15 and have been spotting quantities within 15. We have introduced some basic addition to the children this week and plan to develop this over the next term.

Today we had some very exciting visitors in Milne class… Max’s guinea pigs, Tickle and Pickle (and his lovely mummy!). Max did an excellent job of explaining how to look after them and the children were all very careful to be quiet and stroke them gently! This tied in nicely with our RE session this week about caring for God’s creatures.

Homework

Our handwriting letters this week are from the one-armed robot family. All these letters begin at the top go straight down and back up, before curling around to the right to make the robot’s ‘arm’. They then continue on to make all the different robot family letters – b, n, h, m etc.

 

Please check the homework sheet in the book bag for details of the rhymes for each letter.

 

We will be learning two new Red Words this week. Please practice these lots at home.

 

Have a lovely weekend,

 

Mrs Francis

Friday 17th January

This week we have introduced our Polar Lands topic.  We have been looking at images of Antarctica and have been discussing what it might be like there compared to our home environment, what animals you may or may not find there and learning about the scientists who visit there.  We have had lots of creative penguin activities and will be finding out a little more about these fascinating creatures next week.

Also this week, we have been learning lots about sentences. The children have been discussing how a sentence is made up of words, some of which you can sound out and some of which may be Red Words. We had a go at reading some basic sentences and then writing our very own sentence.  We are encouraging the children to just have a go at writing words, even if they cannot hear all of the sounds within the word. Hearing and knowing which sounds to use will develop throughout the year and we want them to gain confidence in having a go first. Believe it or not we can make lots of sense of the wonderful sentences they have written this week!

This half term we will be looking at the numbers 11-15. We will be looking at counting on from that ‘safe’ number 10 and seeing how these numbers are made and recognised in a variety of forms.

During RE we have been thinking about all the wonderful things that are on our planet. The children have been sharing their ideas of what is important and why they are important. They also have been thinking about the things that they help to take of.

Homework

Our handwriting letters this week are from the one-armed robot family. All these letters begin at the top go straight down and back up, before curling around to the right to make the robot’s ‘arm’. They then continue on to make all the different robot family letters – b, n, h, m etc.

Please check the homework sheet in the book bag for details of the rhymes for each letter.

We will be learning two new Red Words this week. Please practice these lots at home.

 

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend.

 

Mrs Francis

Friday 10th January

We have hit the ground running in Reception and have been doing lots of learning this week! We learnt about 2D shapes and talked about how we need to count the number of sides or corners before we can decided what to call each shape, especially for the shapes with lots of sides!

In Literacy, we talked about what we have all been up to over the holidays and drew lovely pictures of our adventures and time with family and friends. We then had a go at saying some words that we wanted to write down listening carefully for the sounds that we could hear in the words. We talked about how we don’t have to ‘know’ how to write words (except for the Red Words that we have learnt so far – please keep practising!) but that all you need to do is keep saying the word out loud and just write down any sounds you can hear! It is important that the children are not worried about spelling words correctly at this stage in their development and instead build their confidence to ‘have a go’. The teachers were all very impressed with their efforts!

In RE this week, we talked about our fantastic Earth and who cares for it. We discussed how Christians believe that God wants people to help care for the world and some ways that we could do this. The children had many lovely ideas about the amazing things we have in our world and we added some of them to our display!

This term we will be starting our new topic ‘Polar Lands’. Next week we will be talking about cold places and what the weather and environment is like there. We will find the Arctic and Antarctica on a globe and find out about some of the animals that live there. If you are visiting the local library, or have information books already at home, see if you can find out any information about these Arctic regions! Alternatively, support your child to search for information safely online.

Homework

Our handwriting letters this week are from the one-armed robot family. All these letters begin at the top go straight down and back up, before curling around to the right to make the robot’s ‘arm’. They then continue on to make all the different robot family letters – b, n, h, m etc.

Please check the homework sheet in the book bag for details of the rhymes for each letter.

This week we are also sending some 2D shape homework. Please practise counting the number of sides on each shape and using this to remember what to call each shape, e.g. “It has six sides so it must be a hexagon”. Please stick this up on your fridge or somewhere visible and keep practising, as we will be assessing the children on their shape recognition in a few weeks. Thank you!

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

 

Friday 20th December

And just like that our first whole term is over! The children have all made such good progress and we are so proud of all their achievements. I think they deserve a good rest over the holidays!

This week we have enjoyed lots of Christmas learning challenges including reading CVC words, counting out the correct number of baubles onto the Christmas trees and even a Christmas Colouring competition!

On Thursday we enjoyed our Christmas party and had a few nibbles before a big Reception dance off! The children have got some amazing moves and were such good sports – well done!

Homework

Over the holidays please don’t forget to upload an observation on Tapestry for Technology (please see the bottom of the blog for details). If you would like to also upload an observation with some photos and details of what you got up to over the holidays and how you celebrated that would be fantastic!

This week’s handwriting letters are:

A huge thank you for all the kind Christmas presents and lovely messages that you have sent us. They are greatly appreciated. Wishing you and your family a very restful, happy and healthy Christmas. We look forward to seeing you in the New Year!

Have a lovely holiday,

Mrs Francis, Mrs Barrett and Ms Anya x

 

Technology Homework

Children growing up today are immersed in new technologies. In the home, going shopping, at the doctors and in the street – technology is embedded in children’s everyday experiences sometimes to the point where it is almost invisible to them. As part of some of their first activities, early technology experiences will include push button activities, remote control devices, musical keyboards, televisions, cash registers, microwave ovens, tills, scanners and interactive books, as well as computers, tablets and phones. Most of these experiences occur outside of school and therefore we would appreciate your comments about your child’s development in these areas.

Early Learning Goal – Technology – Children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools. They select and use technology for particular purposes.

 

Here are some examples of things your child may do to support this area of the curriculum.

  • Using technology at home – tablets, PCs, laptops, mobile phones, cameras etc
  • Using programmable toys – remote control cars, toys with buttons etc
  • Using role play toys – hoovers, tills, microwaves, washing machines etc (or using the real ones!)
  • Interacting with apps or games online, or on a PC, tablet or mobile
  • Discussing how technology has changed, or how it differs in different places in the world
  • Uses of technology out and about – e.g. barcodes in the supermarket, automatic doors, lifts, hand driers, automatic street lights etc
  • Taking or viewing photos or film
  • Talking about e-safety

We would like you to snap a quick picture and upload it as an observation with a brief comment about how your child uses technology at home. If you are accessing Tapestry through a web browser please log in and click ‘add observation’. Then complete the sections as shown below to add your observation!

If accessing Tapestry through the app please log in and tap the + symbol in the top right corner. Then complete the sections as shown below, before tapping ‘upload’ to finish and upload your observation.

We look forward to reading about the ways in which your child uses technology outside of school!

Friday 13th December

A busy Christmassy week here in Reception. On Tuesday we were very lucky and got to watch KS1’s Nativity dress rehearsal.  They did an amazing job and I think the children were very wowed by how confident and how amazing the children were at remembering all their lines and dance moves.

We have had lots of Christmassy activities this week and the children have been creating maths Christmas trees, making our own tissue paper Christmas trees, writing out some Christmas lists as well as thinking about the Nativity Story in a little further depth.

This week we have been reading and writing some basic CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) words. They are super impressive with their sounding out and writing!  Please keep practising with the children at home. If they are struggling to hear the sounds we use a variety of techniques to help them. First we say the word a few times, next we stretch it (emphasising the final sound), then we Fred speak it into sounds. Then we pinch the sounds onto our fingers to help us retain the information. Then (yes after all of that) we write it down. If your child is struggling then do help them through the stages as once this is supported a few times they usually pick it up after some practice.

We took part in DT Day and explored using pop-up mechanisms and levers to add movement to our Nativity card scenes. The children worked hard making little figures and thought about how to push the levers to make their star fly across the night sky!

In Phonics this week we learnt the sound ‘qu’ which is our first sound that is written with two letters! We found out that the queen always carries her umbrella with her in case it rains, as she doesn’t want her crown to get rusty!

Homework 

We are still focusing on the ‘curly caterpillar’ family this week with g, q and e. Please check the homework folders for details.

Technology Homework

Children growing up today are immersed in new technologies. In the home, going shopping, at the doctors and in the street – technology is embedded in children’s everyday experiences sometimes to the point where it is almost invisible to them. As part of some of their first activities, early technology experiences will include push button activities, remote control devices, musical keyboards, televisions, cash registers, microwave ovens, tills, scanners and interactive books, as well as computers, tablets and phones. Most of these experiences occur outside of school and therefore we would appreciate your comments about your child’s development in these areas.

Early Learning Goal – Technology – Children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools. They select and use technology for particular purposes.

 

Here are some examples of things your child may do to support this area of the curriculum.

  • Using technology at home – tablets, PCs, laptops, mobile phones, cameras etc
  • Using programmable toys – remote control cars, toys with buttons etc
  • Using role play toys – hoovers, tills, microwaves, washing machines etc (or using the real ones!)
  • Interacting with apps or games online, or on a PC, tablet or mobile
  • Discussing how technology has changed, or how it differs in different places in the world
  • Uses of technology out and about – e.g. barcodes in the supermarket, automatic doors, lifts, hand driers, automatic street lights etc
  • Taking or viewing photos or film
  • Talking about e-safety

We would like you to snap a quick picture and upload it as an observation with a brief comment about how your child uses technology at home. If you are accessing Tapestry through a web browser please log in and click ‘add observation’. Then complete the sections as shown below to add your observation!

If accessing Tapestry through the app please log in and tap the + symbol in the top right corner. Then complete the sections as shown below, before tapping ‘upload’ to finish and upload your observation.

We look forward to reading about the ways in which your child uses technology outside of school!

 

If you have any questions or queries, please email or ask at the end of the day. Thank you!

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

Dear Parents/ Carers,
 
Last year, many of the children at St Stephen’s entered the Daunt Books Children’s Short Story Competition. Indeed we even had some winners from our school over the past few years. What an honour to have three published authors in our own school. This year, I would like to encourage any other keen writers from St Stephens to enter, as it is a wonderful opportunity to write a story for pleasure and potentially see it in print!
 
The competition is open to all children aged four to fifteen. The story must be all your child’s own work and must be between 300 and 1500 words.
How do I submit?
You should email your story as an attachment to l.pereira@ststephensce.lbhf.sch.uk by Friday 20th February. Please put your child’s name, age and class as the email title and on the story attached.
Eg: Sally- class Y4 Elliot (Age 9)
Please make sure that the stories are typed, double-spaced and single sided. We will then forward all St Stephen’s entries to Daunt bookshop by the closing date. A copy of the children’s stories will be kept in a special folder in the Library for all to read.   
Results will be announced in April 2020 and winning stories will be published in during summer term.
Good luck and I look forward to reading your children’s stories!
Yours faithfully,
 
Lia Pereira
Spanish Teacher & School Librarian​

Friday 6th December

We’ve been in a whirlwind of wise men, donkeys and angels this week! The children have worked so hard during our Nativity rehearsals and it all paid off as their performance was amazing. The teachers are all really proud of how confident the children were in front of a large audience and how well they sang!


Homework

This week we move on to the ‘curly caterpillar family’ in our handwriting practice. Each letter should start with a c (a curly caterpillar!) before continuing on to complete the letter. Please see the homework folder for more details. Thank you!

Next week we have lots of festive crafty fun planned, as well as our Christmas Lunch on Tuesday. On Thursday it is DT day and we will be making pop-up Nativity cards.

Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs Francis

Homework

Please check the blog post for daily activities.