Foundation Stage 2 Blog
Welcome to the blog for our Heartwood, Clarence, and Verulam class children.
Just to let you know our new blogs are almost here! They are just being finalised and we will be ready to share some exciting updates later on next week.
One of the key changes is the ability for you to ‘follow’ your class blog. This means you will be sent an automatic message each time a new blog is posted, keeping you up-to-date with everything happening in school.
Look out for more information next week.
Welcome to our blog!
This year we are keen to start using our blogs in a slightly different way. Previously they have have been used to share special events taking place at school. We would now like to begin blogging more often and with a particular focus on your child’s learning and how you can work alongside us.
This would mean –
- Class specific blogs
- More regular updates
- The ability to ‘follow’ a blog which means you would receive an alert to let you know when there has been an update
- Interactive links to key songs/stories/websites that have been used in school
- Increased opportunities for you to talk to your child and ask questions about their current learning
Over the half term holiday our blogs and website will undergo some changes so that we are ready to update you with everything we have been learning in school.
A huge thank you for your support in settling the children in to this new term…we will be back with a bang – celebrating firework night, Diwali and the countdown to Christmas begins!
Have a wonderful half term holiday.
From the £1,400 spent by parents at our Book Fair in April we raised just over £800 in rewards to be spent on books for school. Here are the new books we’ve received this week. Due to the extremely tight budget this has been a huge help to us and has enabled us to update and replenish books in the library, in classrooms and to support our 1:1 Readit2 programme.
A huge thank you for your support – we are incredibly lucky!
Kathryn Holt, a local storyteller, came to school on Monday – and look what happened!
We were left feeling incredibly inspired – staff and children were captivated by Kathryn’s interactive retelling of The Lion and The Mouse. There was song, rhythm and rhyme and lots of audience participation! From the photos you will see some of the stories children created in response to what they had heard. We are looking forward to welcoming Kathryn back to school on Monday 5th March to work across Year 1 and Year 2. To learn more about Kathryn or to go along to her regular storytelling sessions, follow this link.
Our Learning Hero Duck has been busy! Over the Christmas holidays and on the first day back at school delivered tricky maths challenges to each class!
Challenges involved making patterns, sharing and finding combinations that add to make a number. Year 2 solved magic boxes, Mitchell class went outside to solve the problem of getting from one end of the field to the other without letting their feet touch the floor! Churchill class made an estimation station where one child filled a bowl with dinosaurs and another child had to guess how many there were!
The Happy Puzzle company also came to visit and gave the children lots of puzzles to solve as a team in our school hall!
The children were encouraged to talk about the problems they encountered and find ways of overcoming these together (even when they were really tricky!)
Here are some quotes from the children following two fantastic days of being expert problem solvers just like Duck:
“We had to do teamwork and not give up like duck when solving the puzzles.” – Juliette
“I’m going to do a Duck challenge.” – James N
“It keeps going on and on. You can even put it in a circle and it’s still a pattern” – Anna taking part in a pattern challenge
“It gets harder and harder but I really like hard stuff.” – Maxime
“I like that it’s hard and it’s a challenge.” – Jojo
“I just like that we get to do tricky challenges.” – Sam
“You get to make puzzles.” – Kerr
“This one is the heavy one because there is rocks inside… Or maybe playdough.” – Grace
“Because you get to build a tower and this one is getting trickier and trickier!” – Aaryan
We were so Proud to be announced as Primary School Champions in the St Albans Fun Run for the third year in a row. On Sunday 12th June we laced up our trainers, put on our red t-shirts and gathered by the Bernards Heath flags in the runner’s village in the park. At 10.15am we ran, jogged, raced, meandered and piggy backed our way along the 1.5 mile course. It was great to work in a team with our Junior School and to see children from Nursery to Year 6 running together and sharing words of encouragement. It was a hot day and some little legs got very tired; it didn’t stop us though and we remembered our Learning Hero Duck who never ever gives up in the face of tricky challenges!
Thank you to children, parents and staff for supporting this exciting event… see you there next year!
Reading Workshops in FS2 and Year 1
We would like to thank all parents who attended the series of Reading Workshops with their children last half term. This was the first time we have organised workshops in this way and are very proud to report that they were a great success!
Here is some of the feedback from parents:
‘It has been really lovely to learn together. The shared experience and my son teaching me has been invaluable. It also helped him to be focused about doing reading at home…Fabulous! Would love to do more!’
‘The workshops have been really useful in helping my own understanding of phonics…Reading at home has now become really positive for both of us as I can confidently answer my son’s questions…’
‘Fantastic opportunity for parents and children. Great learning and better understanding of what to do at home – so valuable! Thank you’
‘Very useful games to assist in learning…she has enjoyed the ‘egg hunt’ game and wants to do this at home all the time.’
‘Really enjoyed the workshop. It has helped a lot with reading at home and given us some great ideas to try. It has also helped me with making the right sounds for each letter.’
‘The workshops have highlighted the strategies the children use – these are helpful reminders when we read together as I feel better equipped to help prompt…It is a treat to spend time with my little one at school. Thank you for supporting us in this way!’
We are looking forward to planning our next series of workshops in the autumn.
At Bernards Heath we value talking about feelings and listen to what children say. Children are invited to write about their feelings and post them into the ‘Feelings Box’ (kept in the hall) this is regularly monitored by an adult so we can have a conversation with a child if, for instance, something is making them feel worried or sad. We also enjoy celebrating positive feelings. At school we acknowledge all feelings, no matter how they make us feel and understand that all feelings are valid and part of being a human. Our PSHE and wider school ethos teaches children what to do when they feel certain things so they can grow into happy and successful members of our community.
Some of the things we have found in the Feelings Box include the following:
‘I am happy because I made a new friend’
‘I am feeling proud because I am good at running now’
I am happy because I ate a strawberry and I am sad because my sister feels poorly’
‘I like doing maths because I like counting’
‘I like playing with my friends’
‘My tummy was hurting but Mrs Banahan’s food made it better’
‘Today I am feeling tired’
‘I am feeling excited because it is nearly my birthday’
‘I feel happy because I like school and I love the lunches’
‘I love my school because my teacher is very imaginational‘
Back in the summer term each class planted a sunflower seed and nurtured it in their classrooms before planting it out in our new Wild Garden. I have just been down to the garden and was surprised by what I saw…
Heartwood Class Sunflower
Alban Class Sunflower
There is quite a big difference in size. I wonder if the sunflowers will keep growing over the last couple of weeks of the holidays, will the Heartwood sunflower grow any petals? We will have to wait and see.
What a blast from the past! Everyone impressed us during our 110th birthday week with their fantastic costumes; we saw flat caps, aprons, long skirts, frills and waistcoats. Children got a real taste for what the school might have been like 11o years ago, learning about what the classroom looked like, the activities children might have engaged in and the different toys and resources they would have played with. During the morning Mrs Rimmer visited each class and carried out a hand inspection and being quite strict! Teachers stayed in character all day, giving the children a real taste of Edwardian school life. A big thank you to everyone for organising the costumes, it was a great way to help us in our 110th birthday celebrations.