Happy Diwali!

We have been finding out about Diwali this week, which is a special time of year for some people of celebrate it. We have been investigating special items, such as Diva Lamps and have been learning about what people do to prepare for, and celebrate, Diwali. 

We have really enjoyed dressing up in the special Diwali clothes and having a Diwali party, as well as making our own Diva Lamps out of play dough. We have been making special Rangoli patterns, both on the computers as well as on paper. The other creative activity that we have really enjoyed doing is making our own Mendhi patterns on some hand templates. It has been really great using a whole host of different colours to create these lovely pieces of art. 

We have been learning about the story of Rama and Sita and have enjoyed acting it out in our small world, ensuring that Rama and the animals saved Sita from Ravana. 

It’s been lovely to see the children be so interested in stories and celebrations from different cultures and I hope they are telling you all about it. 

Happy Diwali, everyone!


Kinetic Letters

We have really been working hard during our Kinetic Letters lessons. We have been building up the strength in our bodies and hands, in preparation for us to begin writing with strength and control. 

We have been laying in our handwriting positions on the carpet; lying on our tummies with our legs and ankles glued together and holding ourselves up with our hands, so that our chests are up. We are really getting good at this and can already see a noticeable improvement in our upper body strength. 

We have also been practising our gross-motor movements, which is preparing us for writing specific letters by practising the actual movements of different letters. You can see us here getting ready for the “pull across” movement; where we hold our writing hand out to our side and pull across our bodies. This will help us with our abracadabra letters: c, a, d, g, q, o and s.

The other strength building exercise that we have been practising is holding ourselves up on our knees whilst completing a game.  You can see us here kneeling, ready to pass along the bean bag in a circle. Once the bean bag gets around the circle, we can all have a rest; so it’s important that we work as a team! 

We are improving so much in our strength exercises and are nearly ready to start writing! Stay tuned!  




A new dolls house!

Last week, some of the children were asking if there was a dolls house at school. So, the teachers dug out a dolls house from the cupboard. Unfortunately, it was looking a little bit tired and sorry for itself, so we gave it a lick of paint to try and brighten it up. Still not completely happy, we decided to buy a brand new dolls house for the children!

It turned up on Friday and, wow, it is certainly big! Mrs Wood worked very hard at building the house and we are so pleased with the results; we cannot wait for the children to see it on Monday morning. We believe that this will encourage some lovely imaginative and cooperative play.

Hope you’ve had a lovely weekend, see you all on Monday! 

Mr Page. 🙂  


#NPATEK Questions for Miles Connelly

Yesterday we watched a clip about behind the scenes of the Enchanted Kingdom, specifically focusing on recording of the elephants. After watching the short clip, the children came up with some questions to ask Myles Connolly (the producer of Enchanted Kingdom), who we are going to Skype on Friday as a whole school. He will answer some of these questions that the children came up with.
Below are the questions that the children came up with: 
Was it scary filming the elephants that close? (Tilly) 
Do they do the action first and then put it on a phone or tablet? (ryean) 
How much water did you have to drink and pour on yourselves to stay cool

 When recording the elephants? (Morgan) 
How did you put all the realms together and why did you choose the chosen seven realms? (Glen)
How many days did it take to record the elephants part of the film? (Emily G) 
How did they attach the camera to the car to record the elephants? (Lilly) 
How many days did it take to make the whole film? (Jacob) 
How many workers were there to record the elephants? (Violet) 
How many elephants do you think you saw? (Charlie) 
Was the film only filmed in Africa? (Spencer) 
Super questions about the recording of the elephants, well done reception. 

#NPATEK Reception African workshops

We have had some very exciting workshop sessions to learn about Africa. On Monday Reception had an African drumming workshop where we learnt about the drums and how to drum a rhythm. We also learnt how to make the music tell a story with fast drumming for dancing, keeping a beat for foot steps and scratching the drum skin for birds flying. We had great fun racing each other playing a rhythm down lots of drums – even the grown ups were competitive! (See Russell the Explorer from the film ‘Up’ – aka Miss Birch in the photos).
   Later in the day we had an African story telling workshop. The visitors told us two African tales and we learnt about a moral to a story. We were also shown different African artefacts. We compared a school bag that African children may use to our explorer backpacks.

 Today some of the Year 5 children worked with Simba class to do some story whooshes (drama technique) with African tales. The Reception children loved working with the older children and the Year 5 were very professional in their teaching! After the session, the Year 5 children asked the Reception children to evaluate session. Some children said they enjoyed using the props, doing the colouring, joining in with the story and playing the games. We also had another workshop with the year five children who taught us all about the animals in Africa, we learnt that there are only 3 white rhinos left I’m Africa, the different animals that live in Africa and why some of them are endangered. 

       The children listened and joined in really well within all of the workshops, well done Simba class. 

E safety week 

This week is e safety week in school. We went into assembly and the Year 5 Digital leaders talked to us about safety when using the Internet. They introduced us to different scenarios and we had to decide what we should do. For example when on the Internet a character had a pop up saying that she had won a competition and needed to input their email address to claim the prize. We discussed that the children should always tell an adult if something pops up on screen.
Back in class we discussed what we know as technology. See the photo below for the things we think need programming.

We also discussed how we can stay safe. The children know that we should never use cameras to take photos of themselves, but should only use our class cameras to photograph their work. 
We discussed our class blogs and how the grown ups in school keep us safe. If a photo of a child is put onto the blog, then the child’s name is not added. If a child’s name is on the blog, then the photo will not include the child’s face. We looked at Gruffalo blog to find examples of this.
This then lead onto a discussion about having an avatar instead of a photo so strangers can not find us online. We looked at some avatars and then the year 6 children came down and set some avatars for the reception staff. 

At the moment the younger children in school use all of the technology in a safe and planned manner, but talking about e safety and starting to learn about it now will enable them to make educated judgements further up the school and also when they use technology at home. We used it as a reminder that we shouldn’t talk to strangers in the street, so we shouldn’t talk to strangers online either. 



#NPATEK Exciting explorers event!

We have had a very exciting afternoon…Mrs Fennelly came rushing into the reception area telling us that something had landed on the field, the children had some guesses of  what it could be…some said it was Lady Arrabella, Simon the knight, superhero coming to visit us early….

We then got called into the hall for an emergency assembly, the children were very excited as they knew it was about what was on the field, they were talking to each other about what it could be. 
When we arrived in the hall Mrs Fennelly  was standing at the front said to the children that a ‘neighbour had called the school to explain that something had landed In the trees’….Paul the site supervisor came rushing in with a parachute and a backpack on his back, he left a trail of mud and water all down the middle of the hall.
At the top of the bag was an envelope, the letter was read out to all the children in the hall, it stated that from the 1st June (so after half term) we are going to be exploring the Enchanted Kingdom and we all need to come dressed up as explorers on the Monday ready for the adventure. There was also a mobile phone number on the front of the envelope. 
We then opened the backpack to see what was inside, there was a variety of items that an explorer would use to give the children some ideas, these included:
A world map
Wind up torch 
Warm waterproof coat 
Sleeping bag 
Waterproof trousers 
A harness 
Walking and rock climbing shoes 
A map of Northampton 
We then phoned the number that was on the envelope, Mr Rees answered the phone, Mrs Fennelly was shocked to hear that it was him as were the children. She then explained what happened on the field and what we need to do next term.
This all sounds very exciting and we can’t wait to join in with the adventure that next term will bring. 
Get ready to be explorers to explore this Enchanted Kingdom! See your child’s key skills book to see what you can do over the half term break. 

Miss Lowe is finally on the blog!

I am finally on the blog, so I can keep it updated. I have had a lovely first term getting to know the children and we have been working very hard within our superheroes topic. 

The children have been doing some lovely writing, describing our mysterious superhero that delivered a box to the class, we have been doing some superhero maths challenges that the children have been working together to solve, also the children have been very creative making various superhero accessories. 
I look forward to seeing you all on Wednesday morning dressed as superheroes, 
Miss Lowe 

Chinese New Year

Welcome back to the second half of the Spring Term, can you believe it is only five weeks until the Easter break and we will be two thirds of the way through Reception!

This week we have been learning about the Chinese New Year and have done lost of exciting Chinese themed activities such as trying Chinese food, making paper lanterns and having a go at Chinese writing. Tomorrow we will be learning Chinese ribbon and dragon dancing in PE. Look out on Tapestry to see some of the activities we have been doing.

It was lovely to see so many parents join us this morning to celebrate the end of our current topic by looking through some of the work we have done and we can’t wait to share all of the fabulous home learning projects that have been completed in the last few weeks over the next couple of days.

Next week we start our new topic ‘When a Knight Won his Spurs II’ and lots of exciting things will be happening so watch this space!

Miss Cookson and the reception Simba team.

Last week of term

Can you believe we are in the final week of the Spring 1 term already?! We have been so busy over the last few weeks. We are simply flying with our sounds and words so keep practising them at home.

We have really enjoyed our book that we have been focusing on ‘Mrs Armitage on Wheels’ and have done some very impressive writing about the story. We have also loved listening to Roald Dahl’s ‘The Twits’ in reading time, perhaps you could find some more of Roald Dahl’s stories to read, I’m sure you would love them.

This term we have seen the launch of 2015-the year of reading and it has been great to see and hear how many of you have visited and joined the local library. In school it’s such a pleasure to see little crowds of you sat together sharing and reading books!

As we return from the break we will have a week focusing on Chinese New Year so perhaps you could find out some things about this festival over the holiday. We will then launch into our exciting new topic ‘When a Knight Won his Spurs’ but more about that later!

Our Kinetic letters work has also really come along. If you would like some support resources for home look at the Website www.kineticletters.co.uk and you can also be the resource cards for home from the office for £9 a packet.

I hope you all have a safe and restful break, see you all soon!

Miss Cookson