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Parrots Class

Class News Autumn Term 2020

18.9.2020


Dear Parents and Carers

It is a real pleasure to be sending out the first email from Parrots Class this academic year. I am incredibly proud of all the children and would like to say a big thank you to them all for making me feel so welcome. Even though life is a little different at the moment and there are some changes within school, the children have really adapted well and proved themselves to be happy, resilient learners. I’d like to say a particular well done to the Year One children who, having missed the normal transition activities into Key Stage One, have really amazed me at how well they have settled in. Well done!

We have spent a lovely couple of weeks together as a class getting to know each other. We very much enjoyed the story ‘The Colour Monster’, following this up by making our own mini monsters and talking about our feelings during lockdown. We have also enjoyed making some 3D parrots, painting self-portraits and getting active with some daily ‘wake and shake’ sessions.

In our English sessions we have joined together with the rest of the school in exploring the new Oliver Jeffers text ‘Here we are’ which takes a look at life as we know it. We have used Google Earth to zoom in on the local area, created guides to Planet Earth and written our own version of the song ‘What a Wonderful World’. The children have been particularly thoughtful when discussing the diversity of people from across the world and of how we can best look after the animals on our planet too. Our classroom display is filling up with some lovely work which we are looking forward to sharing with you soon.

We have also continued to work on our Maths skills, with daily sessions in class. This week the children have impressed me with their counting and subitising (recognise a small number of objects without counting) and we have begun to look at different representations of numbers also. As well as this we have enjoyed phonic games and daily stories too.

Next week we are planning on moving the children into their Mathematics and English teaching groups and once they are settled you will receive a letter from their group teachers to explain things such as reading books, spellings and organisation. This year in Parrots class we will be awarding one child per week with our ‘Top of the Tree Award’. This award is given to children who are following our school and classroom rules, trying their best in everything that they do and being a good friend to their peers. This week our winner is Felicity. Well done!

Just a reminder that this year our Physical Education (PE) days are Wednesday and Thursday so children need to be in PE kit on those days, with long hair tied back. We have also had a number of unnamed items of clothing found in the classroom. Please can you check that jumpers/cardigans especially are named so that these can be quickly returned to the rightful owner. Thank you.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend.
Mrs McLean, Miss Cross and Mrs Stapleton.

 

2.10.2020

Dear Parents and Carers


We have been very busy in Parrots this fortnight with the children now moving to their different groups for English, Maths and Phonics.  They have shown great resilience in remembering the new routines for moving around the Key Stage and for remembering which class they need to go to for which session. I am very proud of them all and have heard great things from their teachers.


We have started our theme learning for this half term which is titled ‘Out of the egg’.  We began by exploring the different animals which lay eggs and matched the eggs to it’s mum. Luckily the ostrich egg didn’t belong to the spider, I think we were all grateful for that!  The children sorted through living and non-living things to identify whether it laid eggs or not and completed some excellent work.
 

In History we have learnt about the different time periods during the dinosaur age, discovering thatthe T-Rex was one of the last dinosaurs to walk our planet.  Some of the children have an amazing amount of dinosaur knowledge and were really helpful in helping me pronounce the very difficult dinosaur names!
 

In Geography we located the different continents and oceans that make up our world and thought about which continent certain dinosaurs lived on. The children were really interested in discovering that our world didn’t quite look as it does now- ask them about Pangea! 
 

We have continued to keep active this week. The children are very much enjoying our PE sessions which this half term are based around ball skills and athletics.
 

Well done to our handwriting heroes this fortnight: Leo, Lisa-Grace, Aaron and Eloise
And Top of the Tree was awarded to Aaron and Hanna. Well done.

 

You will have noticed that your child has had some log in details stuck in the front of their reading records. One of these is for them to access their weekly homework on Education City and the other is for them to access TT Rockstars and Numbots. These are both great programmes used across the school to develop accuracy, speed and fluency in the recall of times tables and number bonds. Please support your child with accessing these at home whenever possible. You will have received a letter today (Friday) with more information about accessing TT Rockstars and Numbots.

 

Have a lovely weekend.

Mrs McLean, Miss Cross and Mrs Stapleton

 

16.10.2020

Dear Parents and Carers,


It has been another busy fortnight in Parrots Class and the children have continued to impress me with their resilience and dedication towards their learning.


Last week we all enjoyed learning about fungus as part of Biology week. The children discovered that not all fungi are ‘good guys’ and learnt the importance of not touching mushrooms unless instructed by an adult. They created their own comic mushroom characters- we had some very evil ‘bad guys’! The children loved taking their own mushroom spore prints and seeing the difference in patterns. We ended the week by being fungi detectives in the school grounds. It was really lovely to see so many children continue this learning at home and sending in pictures of their finds. Well done. This week we began the week by finding a mysterious door on the playground to mark Pobble Day. The children showed they have some amazing imaginations by describing what they thought lay beyond the door- from evil Christmas characters to enchanted forests, they carefully considered the clues on the door and composed some fantastic descriptive writing. Two of these will soon be published on Pobble.


Please look out for an email asking your permission for your child work to published on the Pobble website. Following the success of previous years, we will continue to use this website to publish pieces of work and celebrate writing throughout the school year. It is a fantastic way of sharing your childrens work with you, the school community and on a global platform! It will only be published with your childs first name and age group. If you click on the link in the email it will take you to the website and you can give permission for their work to be shared.

 

The children have continued their theme work also this week, sorting dinosaurs by considering the types of food they ate. We very much enjoyed a clip from Dino Dinner Date (Let’s Go Live) where we used CT scans of dinosaur heads to decide if they were herbivores or carnivores. The children have also got creative this week by sculpting their own 3D dinosaurs with clay, exploring how to join clay and use a variety of tools for different effects. They look amazing and the children are keen to paint them soon.

 

After the half term break, the children in key stage one are being offered football coaching through our links with Luton Town Football Club. These sessions will take place in their Thursday afternoon session and they will already be in their PE kits. However, where possible, could the children also bring in football boots on this day. They will change into these before their allocated session. 

 

Well done to our handwriting hero and heroine this week: Jenson, Jolie, William and Abby.
Top of the Tree was awarded to Jolie and Sophie.

 

6.11.2020

Dear Parents and Carers

 

I hope you have all had a restful half term and are looking forward to what is always a busy half term ahead. In light of the most recent Government announcement, we have spent some time recapping our safety rules in class and I have been impressed with how reflective, thoughtful and sensible the children have been - well done.

 

Before half term we completed our theme of ‘Out of the Egg’ by considering what happened to the dinosaurs. I was most impressed with the knowledge many of the class showed by explaining their extinction; Alex summed it up so well by calling it a ‘chain reaction’, great explanation Alex.

 

We hope you enjoyed seeing their 3D clay dinosaurs come home. The children carefully considered the colours they would need and many added extra details such as scales, horns and teeth. Take care of them - they are very fragile!

 

We have already begun our new theme this half term: ‘Home and Away’. We have looked at features local to us in Dunstable and have sorted these into human and physical. This caused some really insightful discussions when it came to looking at the chalk lion on Whipsnade Hill. Aaron was able to speak about the chalk being a natural resource whilst Isla told us of a family member who helped create the lion shape. This fantastic reasoning led to us deciding that it could potentially be a human and physical feature of our local environment - great thinking everyone!

 

The children have also been detectives this week, searching through clues about The Gunpowder Plot and deciding what facts these proved. We discussed whether we felt Guy Fawkes really was a criminal and the children were amazed to see what damage could have been achieved by watching a BBC recreation of the plot. We celebrated the day itself by creating some Andy Goldsworthy inspired firework pictures.

 

Well done to all those who completed the half term homework. There were some amazing Black History projects and I enjoyed reading about some new people I had not heard of before such as Ruby Bridges and Morrie Turner. I would also like to say well done to all those who have been accessing either Numbots (Year 1’s) or TT Rockstars (Year 2’s) over half term. We took a look at the leaderboards for both and the children enjoyed trying to find their names. Remember to try and log on to these platforms as often as possible each week to help build fluency, stamina and speed.

 

Pencil cases are coming home each Friday. This week especially can you please check that your child has a whiteboard pen as we are finding that more and more children do not have one in school- thank you.

 

Well done to our handwriting heroes and heroines: Jasmin, Dylan, Elizabeth and Anson
And Top of the Tree was awarded to Rosalie and Isla.

Have a lovely weekend
Mrs McLean, Miss Cross and Mrs Stapleton

 

20.11.2020

 

Dear Parents and Carers


What a busy two weeks! The children have been absolute superstars amidst a lot of changes to routines and familiar adults; you should be incredibly proud. I would also like to thank you as parents for your continued support and understanding during this time. It was lovely to meet lots of you again at Parent Review meetings, I hope you found these and the accompanying learning targets helpful.

Last week we celebrated Maths Week across the school, discovering that maths is everywhere around us. The children participated in live sessions with other schools across the Trust to show off their mathematical skills, taking part in a quiz and live lesson. Well done to Alex and Leo for winning the quiz in Parrots Class. The children loved designing and making fruit cocktails, considering what ratio of fruit juices they wanted to use and measuring capacity to make them. I hear they tasted delicious! We also explored symmetry in rangoli patterns with some children having a go at creating their own. Well done all.

We had an array of Pudsey and Blush Bears arrive in the classroom on Friday to take part in Children in Need; thank you to all those who dressed up/down and donated to this wonderful cause. We were left thoroughly exhausted after the Joe Wicks workout and showed our creativity by following the ‘Learn to draw Pudsey’ tutorial. We certainly have some exceptional artists in our class.

This week the curriculum enhancements continued with ‘Anti-Bullying Week’. On Monday we all wore our odd socks to celebrate diversity and the children all talked about how they would play a part in uniting against bullying. Take a look at our puzzle pieces on the classroom window to see our pledges. The children enjoyed the story ‘Monty the Manatee’ which explores bullying, showing great compassion. Take a look at the seaschool stories website which has lots of  great resources linked to the story.

On top of all this we also continued our theme of ‘Home and Away’. We have been Historians and used photo evidence to explore what Dunstable used to look like, as well as identifying human and physical features on the school grounds. The children were particularly interested in learning about the history of the school, with lots asking if we could have a swimming pool again! In the next couple of weeks we will be looking more closely at Bennett’s Recreation Ground and considering ways we could improve the space for local people. Normally, we would take a walk to visit it to make our own observations, but unfortunately we will be adapting this to a classroom based session using their own knowledge and pictures of the different facilities. Maybe if you are out and about over the weekend you might visit the recreation ground on a walk and have a look at what is there to use and maybe what could be added to make it even better! This would help the children in classroom-based discussions.

Finally this week all children competed in a virtual sports challenge, competing against other children in local schools. They took part in a range of events such as speed bounce, vertical jump and shuttle runs. Scores have been submitted and we look forward to hearing the results.

Well done to our handwriting heroes and heroines: Lucas, Grace, Hanna and Dylan
Top of the Tree was awarded to Shreya and Meadow.

Have a lovely weekend
Mrs McLean, Miss Cross and Mrs Stapleton