Welcome to P1a’s class website!
Here you will find out information about the term ahead, see some photos and hear about the learning that has taken place.
It has been yet another eventful month. We have settled well in the temporary classroom and made the space our own. The children enjoyed choosing what play areas to set up and the activities we should put on our tuff spot and investigation pallet. Dinosaurs has been a child-led Line of Development and many of us have brought in books and posters to share with our friends. Prince Charming got in touch and was extremely happy that we could host the ball for him. It was a lovely afternoon full of fun and joy, and we enjoyed spending time with the other p1 classes – a good way to make new friendships that may flourish next year when the classes are mixed.
In literacy, we learnt about how we can use the internet for communication and wrote e-mails to Prince Charming. We also learn in Health and Wellbeing lessons, the importance of staying safe online. We have carried out phonics activities on the sounds ‘oo’ and ‘ee’ and many of us are confident in using these digraphs in our writing.
On our investigation pallet, we have a range of weighing scales and items. We have learnt to make weight comparisons and some of us are learning to read the scale to find out the actual weight of items. We have worked hard to learn our number bonds of 10 and can show them in a range of ways e.g. using Numicon, on our fingers, writing a number sentence, as spots on a ladybird. Along with this number work, we have explored a 100 square and are learning to identify bigger numbers, count in 2s and 10s and order decade numerals.
It has been a truly rewarding year teaching p1a. They are a wonderfully creative, imaginative, kind and cooperative group that I feel honoured to have taught. Thank you to everyone who has helped over the year; with reading groups in the classroom, with supporting your child at home to learn new sounds, with kind and supportive words towards myself and the children, and with the home baking! All that is left for me to say is enjoy the holidays and thank you once again.
A dragon came to visit us this month! He left us a sad letter saying that Fairyland was disappearing because children were no longer reading fairytales. We knew we had to help so chose 3 stories to read; Jack and the Bean Stalk, Little Red Riding Hood and The Gingerbread Man. We enjoyed chanting the repeated parts of the stories. He left us a D-mail – a post box in which we can leave him letters and pictures. We helped Jack by growing beans and learnt the different parts of a plant. To support Little Red Riding Hood we created Wanted posters of the wolf, learning to use describing words in our writing. And of course, we just had to bake gingerbread men! Through this we gained experience of measuring out ingredients, decorating with icing and we made a pictogram to show the part of the man we ate first! Yummy!
We also moved classrooms in May which was exciting. We are enjoying direct access to the garden and have set up sensory, water and sand play areas there. In our maths, we have continued to learn about money and have begun to learn to use several coins to buy an item. This will continue to be a focus in June because of its importance in every-day life. We have also begun to explore weight.
Our helicopter stories (stories that the children create which are scribed by adults, then acted out by the class) have been fabulous. Our creativity and imagination shines through these and we have learnt about the process of drafting then editing a piece of writing.
We were very lucky to have a real author visit us, her name was Emily Dodd. She writes fiction and non-fiction. She showed us a different way to descirbe how volcanoes errupt and as a special treat she read us her brand new story (just published the week before she visited us!) all about squirrels who were learning to be kind friends. We have started to support the nursery children in their transition to Balgreen Primary School. We went to visit them and showed our uniforms, reading folders, PE kits and lunch bands. This has sparked our wonder for what lies ahead in Primary 2!
We have had a focus on healthy living and begun the month with a super dance workshop during which we learned a pop and hip-hop routine. We have explored different types of food and looked at the Eat Well Plate. To show our understanding, one of our rainbow tasks was to pack a healthy lunch and bring in a healthy snack.
Many of us brought in decorated eggs to celebrate Easter. Well done to Baxter who won the competition with his fabulous egg football team! We learned about the Christian Easter story and enjoyed taking part in an egg hunt.
As a whole class, we visited Struan Lodge Care Home. We did a beautiful job of singing some Spring themed songs to the elderly people and talking to them with respect and kindness. Mrs Jeffrey and Miss Stickland were really proud of all the children.
We also had a fabulous time learning about the ancient Egyptians at the p3 topic exhibition. We looked at hieroglyphics, made 3D pyramids and had our faces painted and got mummified!
We completed our Natural Disasters topic by building a town and testing it to see if it would survive an earthquake and tsunami – most of our buildings were destroyed! We learnt about the properties of the materials we used (paper, card, plastic blocks, glue, tape, straws, paint, etc.).
In numeracy we are working hard to learn our number bonds, recognise bigger numbers up to 100 and to identify British coins. We have begun to learn to read and write consonant digraphs (sh, ch, wh and th) and are gaining confidence in writing sentences. We have explored the difference between non-fiction/information and fiction/story books and can point out some of the key features of each. Our French vocabulary is expanding and we can now say several colours, count to 10 and tell people our names. Tres bien!
March has whizzed by in p1a! We have started helicopter stories where we create our own stories, which are scribed for us. As a class we then use drama to act them out and the creator gets the chance to edit their story.
We undertook a new Line of Development; Natural Disasters. Max, Maja and Olaf made a Lego town and used blue fabric to show the effects of a tsunami. We explored the different layers of the Earth, learned how volcanoes erupt, carried out an earthquake drill and watched videos of tsunami waves. We had a great time building mud volcanoes and using household ingredients to make them erupt.
In maths we have learnt about symmetry and created pieces of art showing a symmetrical image, as well as trying to build a symmetrical bridge out of Lego. We explored clocks. We made our own analogue clock face with big and small hands and numerals 1-12. We can read an o’clock time. Lots of us are developing our understanding of how a number can be made up of two numbers added together i.e. number bonds and we have used lots of practical resources to help us visualise this including spots on ladybirds, buttons on t-shirts, coins in treasure chests and pegs on coat hangers.
To complete our Wedding Line of Development we baked and decorated cupcakes. We used a lot of maths skills – weighing the ingredients and timing how long they took to cook. Yummy!
We have covered all the letters of the alphabet (except q)! The children have worked so hard to recognise each letter, know the sound it makes and link it to an action and many are writing them. We are working on encoding and decoding short words using this knowledge. We have also been working on our creative writing; the children enjoyed learning about Chinese New Year and re-wrote parts of the animal story, we have wrote about our outdoor learning in the woods and used describing words to make out writing more interesting.
In our play, we have developed a keen interest in weddings! It began with Natalie taking a trip on our train (in the role-play area) to London to go to a wedding. From this, children organized the event; wrote menus for the meal, made outfits and jewelry to wear, created bunches of flowers and use loose parts to make a giant wedding cake! Aadhi shared photos from a Hindu wedding he recently attended in India and Robbie showed us photos of his parents wedding in which he was the ring barer. This theme will continue into next month because the children have asked to bake a real cake and make wedding dresses. We will hear from staff members about their marriages and explore different cultures and same-sex marriages. Mrs Jeffrey may even wear her wedding dress one day!
February rounded off with the World of Work Week. We had so much fun learning about different occupations. We especially loved trying on a real police vest and helmet and learning how handcuffs work from Adam’s dad (police officer). We were interested in how many weddings the florist made flowers for each year and were amazed at the experiments scientists carry out. We enjoyed learning the skills Robbie’s dad needs to be a wonderful joiner and all of us used an electric screw driver to join a piece of timber to plasterboard! We also learned how to make pizza and about the role of a restaurant manager at out trip to Pizza Express. Our pizzas were delicious!
We are delighted to let you know that the Primary 1 classes are going to participate in the Global School Play Day on Wednesday 6th February. This has been a world-wide event running since 2015 with the aim of raising awareness of the importance of play and the long-term benefits of a play-based curriculum in the Early Years. Last year over 380,000 children and young people participated in the event from India, to Brazil and Australia. During this day, children will engage in free-flow, self-directed play for the full school day. The teachers, PSAs and EYP will be making detailed observations and supporting learning through skilful interactions. For further information about the Global School Play day visit the website: www.globalschoolplayday.com
Something special happened in p1a towards the end of this month; the whole class cooperated together to put on an Arctic Show. It all began when Ben asked Miss Stickland if she would like to watch his puppet show. She replied “Do I need a ticket?” and from that, the whole class explored into a hive of activity! We made tickets, wrote our names on them, made lists to show the people invited, made masks for the actors, made walkie-talkies for the bouncers, set up the seating and an additional apron of the “theatre”. We had 10 minute, 5 minute and 1 minute count down timers and then a 10 second count down to the start of the show. We learned to take photos and videos on the ipad to film the show. We moved our bodies in ways of the Arctic animals and used our voices to mimic the noises they make. We developed our ICT skills, writing skills, cutting and joining skills, numeracy (time) awareness, spatial planning, communication, gross motor skills, creativity and imagination! All this from self-directed play and an excellent adult interaction (thank you Miss Stickland!).
We have expanded our free-flow play opportunities by opening up all three p1 classrooms for two afternoons a week. This means we get to choose which learning environment we go into and have a wider variety of play activities to help us develop new skills and knowledge. This also gives us the additional responsibility of signing in and out of the classroom we are in. We can socialise with more peers and build relationships with additional adults.
We are very good at taking ownership of our learning now in p1a and almost all of us are able to complete 6 rainbow activities each week at a time that suits us i.e. during our free-flow play times. These are usually based on 6 key areas; 1. Numeracy, 2. Mathematics, 3. Phonics, 4. Fine Motor Skills, 5. Health and Wellbeing, 6. Art/Technology. This month, our teacher time for phonics has had a focus on the letters f, v and w and many of us are gaining confidence to write full sentences. Our creative writing is flourishing with increasingly detailed pictures and two-part stories. In numeracy, we have been learning to make reasonable estimations, count 2 collections accurately using the count on strategy, write number sentences using the plus and equals symbols (e.g. 5+4=9) and exploring number bonds of 4 and 5 i.e. all the different ways we can make these numbers.
December has been a hive of excitement and joy!
Some of us were keen to chat about our home countries so we looked at a world map and labelled the places where we come from. This lead to an interest in maps so atlases and a globe were made available for us to explore. This helped us learn about our place in the world and develop curiosity about different cultures. We also made our own treasure maps! We made the paper look old by staining it with tea and then drew on it with pens. We learnt about directions; North, South, East and West and some of us added a compass to our maps.
Through lots of active tasks and verbal discussions, we have been developing our sense of number. We have made human number lines to sequence numbers, used clapping games to learn to track amounts on our fingers, started adding two amounts together with one of the collections covered up, learned to describe equal groups and have started to explore bigger numbers using ICT games. We will have a focus on number formation after the Winter holiday.
Of course we have also been engaging in lots of Christmas activities; singing traditional carols as well as more modern songs, being a superb audience while watching the p3s’ excellent Nativity show, dancing and singing during the Rookie Rockstar workshop, many of us enjoyed a Christmas dinner at lunch time, lots of arts and crafts, decorating our class tree, exploring what our senses may experience during the festive period and we had such a ball at our Christmas party!
We wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
With the dark mornings and even darker evenings, we have injected a lot of colour into our learning during November in order to keep us energised and enthusiastic! This month saw us getting secure with the set up of our Rainbow Activities – there are specific tasks we have to do through out the week and we collect lollypop sticks for each task we complete. The best part is being in control of our own learning – we get to choose when we do these tasks and sometimes even get to choose what the task is.
We have continued to learn more sounds in our phonics lessons and many of us have begun to put this knowledge to use – we can name things beginning with that initial sound, some of us are writing short words and can you believe that some of us have started writing sentences! We have all worked so hard on our story writing through drawing pictures with increasing detail.
During our Health and Wellbeing lessons, we loved looking at photos of our classmates as babies and guessing who each one was. It formed the start of us exploring what we couldn’t do then that we can do now, what we can’t do yet and discussing what we will be able to do when we are older. We are learning to have a growth mindset – anything is possible! We listened to what each other wanted to be when they grow up which lead to lots of learning through role play.
Our mini topic has been on Road Safety because we enjoyed the Magic Roadshow so much. We chose to build a road in our classroom, use play dough to zebra crossings, dress up as lolly-pop people and went outside to use real traffic lights. We now feel much more confident in keeping ourselves safe when crossing the road.
It was lovely to get a short but sweet meeting with you at parents evening, thank you for being patient if I was late for our appointment! If any questions have arisen since then, please do come see me at the end of the day or we can make an appointment for a time that suits.
In December, we are very lucky to have Mrs Gillies, our art specialist, coming into p1 to help us develop our art skills. This will take place on Tuesday afternoons so we will have less outdoor learning time but this will begin again in January.
Bring on the month of merriment!
This month started off challenging – with Challenge Week! And what a busy week that was. We enjoyed visits from Mr Napier, Mrs Palmer and Mrs Edgar who are people we can go to if we have a problem. Nick, from Place 2 Be, read us the Big Bag of Worries and we learnt he was another person who can help if we have a worry. Over the week we thought hard about our own learning; the things we were doing really well in and the things we found quite difficult. We learnt how to self-assess our work using traffic lights and smiley faces.
We have been really busy learning lots of letter sounds. To help us, we do actions and sing songs, make play dough letters, trace letters using pens, build words on our magnetic boards and use ipad apps to make colourful, sparkly letters.
We have also been working hard on our number work this month. We are confident in identifying dice and pairs patterns, can recognise numerals (1-10/20) and have been working in pairs to sequence numbers. In our play, we have made colour patterns and explored 3D shape.
We had a spellbinding time at our Hallowe’en party! Tricky Ricky wowed us with his magic show and we had a spectacular time dancing and bobbing for apples. Mrs Jeffrey was amazed at our creative, imaginative costumes; we were witches, werewolves, vampires, mermaids, cats, pumpkins, batman, spiderman, skeletons and much more!
We have all settled in well to primary school life and have enjoyed the couple of weeks we have spent in p1. We have learnt each others names and begun to form new friendships. We know our way around the parts of the school that we use including our playground, toilets, lunch hall and main office.
In our learning we have looked at dice patters, numeral identification and formation, identified objects beginning with the sounds ‘a’ and ‘t’ and begun to learn how to write these letters. We have learnt how to hold scissors and made a tumbling teddy.
Our MADD focus has been the Rainbow Fish; we have enjoyed listening and watching the story, took part in drama hot-seating with the Rainbow Fish, explored how we can move our bodies like different sea creatures and enjoyed singing under the sea songs. By mixing primary colours, we painted our own rainbows. WOW – we have done so much in just a few weeks!
September was a very busy month in p1! We really enjoyed sharing our MADD experience with our families; our water symphony sounded great, we enjoyed a story and shared a play experience with our mums and dads.
Our role-play corner has been changed to into a hospital and this has sparked lots of learning about the different jobs people do; there are children who want to be a paramedic, a nurse or an obstetrician when they grow up! We have watched videos of people getting MRI scans, injections and X-rays. In our hospital we have enjoyed acting out doctor/patient scenarios, helped fixed ‘broken bones’ with bandages and listened to our heart beats with stethoscopes.
We have begun reading books about the characters we know, including Biff, Chip, Kipper and Floppy. We are learning to look closely at the pictures and use them as clues to help us read the story. We are also learning to recognise the main characters’ names and some of us are even sounding out short words!
Many of us have developed our ICT skills by exploring BeeBots. We found out how to program them using the buttons with arrows showing the direction of movement. We wanted to build mazes for them so we used masking tape and wooden trees to make paths on a tuff tray.
As a team, we created our class rules. We considered how we want our classroom to look and how we want to feel in it. From this we established 3 agreements that we feel are important to our wellbeing and enjoyment at school.