Autumn 1 2022
This half term we will be focusing on settling the children into FS2, learning the rules, routines and developing positive relationships. Each half term the children’s topic will be developed through their interests over the half term. This half term we are continuing with an interest the children were talking about in their provision areas in FS1 at the end of the summer term and in our transition activities. We are learning all about Superheroes and our topic is called Super Duper Me!
Introduction to RE at St Joseph’s
Over the last two weeks we have been introducing the children to our four daily prayers. As part of this the children have practiced making the sign of the cross and have started to learn the Makaton that we do alongside them. The children have done really well and have also started to learn and practice saying “Our Father”. Click the button below to go to the page on our website to learn these school prayers with your child.
This week, we have begun our RE learning journey all about God’s World. We started off by watching The Story of Creation so that the children could learn about how God made the world in 7 days. The children then thought carefully about what makes up God’s creation and even began to discuss how they would look after His world. Here is the video that we watched in class to learn about this story.
This week we continued to learn about the world that God created and what he did on each day. We shared a powerpoint together and made a list of all the things that God made. Over the next few weeks, we will be encouraging the children to create God’s world and add their own pictures to talk about what God created, It would be lovely if you can share the creation story with your child at home and ask them to draw a picture of something special that God made. You can print of this creation wheel to help you…Creation Wheel
We are thinking about how God shows us he loves us and people that we love. We have read the book “Guess how much I love you” by Sam McBratney. If you have the book at home, it would be great if you could read it together with someone in your family. If you don’t have the story, here is a version that you might like to listen too.
We would love to see pictures on Tapestry of people that you love, and ways that you can show love to others. As an extra challenge, can you tell us how you know that God loves you? We are looking forward to seeing you explore our RE learning challenge this week.
We continue to learn our daily prayers each day in collective worship.
10 rules of being a superhero!
To start off our English learning journey, we have used the text ’10 rules of being a superhero’. The children have loved reading this story and enjoy discovering the rules to being a superhero. The children have begun their learning journey in this subject by creating their own eleventh rule to being a superhero. Here are just some of the fantastic suggestionss that the children have made:
“You must have a super headquarters.” Eliza
“You need to lock up the bad guys.” Lukas
“You need to eat healthy.” Ciara
“You have to have lots of rest.” Ted
We have also started our phonics lessons, in which we use the scheme ‘Sounds Write’. We are at the beginning of the scheme where we are focusing on sounds and their corresponding grapheme. The children have been amazing at attempting to write these and are even able to read and spell some basic CVC words!
In class we have recently started our formal maths lessons. On the carpet, we have been focussing on our counting skills up to 5 and 10. The children have then been ordering numbers to 5 and 10, as well as finding quantities around the classroom to match the numerals up to 10. We have been blown away with how well the children have been during our first maths lessons. It seems we have some great mathematicians in FS2 this year!
In maths this week we are also going to learn how to subitise groups of objects. Subitising is a an important skill that children need to learn as part of their maths learning journey. The children are taught to use their eyes when subitising and not any counting techniques they have already learnt. We will be teaching children to subitise with objects up 5 this week. The children will look at a group of objects ( this week it is spiders linked to our Spinderella text) and guess how many spiders are in the group without counting. You could try and do the same challenge with groups of objects at home to get your children masters of subitising. If you take on this challenge we would love to see on Tapestry!
Check out one of our favorite Maths stars Jack Hartmann on subitising to 5!
You could also print of these Autumn resources and have a go at subitising to 5 with your child at home-Subitising to 5 challenge 1 Subitising to 5 challenge 2
Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED)
Learning new rules and routines
We have been focusing on our new class rules. In Foundation Stage 2, we try to think of Mr Potatohead when we think about the rules. Here is our class display to show what the rules are.
Over the last few weeks, we have used the worry monster to share our worries. We have learnt that often our worries are shared by others and that by telling someone we trust about them we can feel better. Once we have shared our worries our worry monster has eaten them all up and now keeps them safe for us. As often as the children like but at least once a week we review our worries and see if we have any more that we would like to share and ask the worry monster to keep safe for us.
In FS2, we have our special board where we celebrate the children’s hard work and behaviour in class. The children all start at ‘Ready’ each day and aim for lift off for their excellent learning. Of course, if the children need a little more encouragement to focus on their learning or behaviour they can go down on the chart too but there is ALWAYS an opportunity to go back up again!
World Car Free Day
This Wednesday, it was World Car Free Day. Lots of children in our class used this as an opportunity to walk/scoot/bike to school that day. As a class, we discussed how sometimes we could walk instead of going in the car. We talked about how some journeys a car is needed but if we are going to somewhere not too far away, walking can be a great option to help look after God’s world. This is the start of our learning journey about how to ‘Live Simply’. For more information about what ‘Live Simply’ is, please click the link below to go to this page on our school website.
When discussing looking after His world, we also thought of different ways that we could ‘Live Simply’ in our daily lives. We talked about recycling, switching off light switches and switching off the tap whilst we are brushing our teeth. We even pretended to brush our teeth so that we could know when we should turn on and off the tap. The children were brilliant at this!
The Colour Monster
In class we have begun to discuss our feelings. This is the just the start of their learning journey for self regulation in FS2. We have used the text ‘The Colour Monster’ to help the children to begin to use different vocabulary around their feelings and to begin to understand what these feelings might look/feel like. As you can see from the images below, different colours represent different emotions.
These colour monsters are going to be displayed in our classroom for the children to begin their own check ins so that they can talk about their own feelings throughout the day.
FS2 enjoyed Wellbeing Week where we had a focus on physical wellbeing, emotional wellbeing and mental health.. We enjoyed 5 themes across the week: Be Kind, Take Notice, Be Active, Try Something New and Feel Good Friday.
We had a big focus in class about being kind. We started by sharing a story called ‘Have you filled a bucket today?’ Then as a class we thought about ideas in how we can fill a bucket of kindness. We then made our own kindness bucket in class, and the children have enjoyed sharing kindness to others and adding a ball whenever they have filled someone else’s imaginary bucket. If you would like to share the story at home, here is a version of it-
We also tried something new in class this week. We decided to venture out to our school adventure playground. This meant the children had to be really brave… and they loved it!!
Adventure playground pictures coming soon…
We also enjoyed trying out some dancing and singing on Feel Good Friday! We switched on some songs and just had a boogie! We also learnt about how smiling can really make a difference as to how we feel. The children gave each other big smiles and loved how it made them feel!
Left and Right
We have been learning all about our lefts and rights in PE. The children have been following instructions really carefully to learn which is which. They are making good progress with this! The children also used this new understanding when developing their skills at rolling a ball. We have even been singing ‘The Hokey Cokey’ to really work on their new understanding. That was probably their favourite part!
We have started our daily ‘Dough Disco’ in school! Dough Disco is used as a fun way to support the children with their fine motor skills. It is a combination of the use of play dough with hand and finger exercises to help the children to improve fine motor control. The children really enjoy this part of their day and have shown great listening and effort to try and copy the video. Have a look at the video we regularly use in school. It would be great to do this at home to continue this area of their learning.
The children were set a challenge as part of our dough disco to make a thief from the story What the Ladybird Heard that is our Literacy focus this week. Here are some of their creations…
Exploring Our Outdoor Provision
In our FS2 garden this week we have been using our gross motor skills to explore our climbing equipment. As a team we also created a pirate ship out of crates and carefully climbed around the ship ensuing we didn’t get eaten by crocodiles. Here we are in action in our FS2 garden…
In our garden today we had a challenge to see who could jump the highest off some of our climbing equipment. The children then counted to 3 and tried to jump off at the same time! I was lovely to see the children smiling and enjoying making new friendships.
Fine Motor Skills
In class we have been encouraging children to try a selection of fine motor activities. We have an areas set up in our provision areas that is dedicated to learning fine motor skills. This week we have been encouraging children to pick up pom poms and put them on a spider.
We love that one of children decided to take on a fine motor challenge with some of his Autumn resources at home to make his own spider linked to our Spinderella story! We hope you love Krystian’s spider conker as much as we do!
It was lovely to see two of our children working hard at their scissor skills in our provision area. One of them created a house using a triangle and carefully cut around the edges and then drew the house. We then had another one of our children creating a tree. He cut out his leaves carefully, and accurately with his scissors.
Expressive Arts and Design
Exploring media and materials in provision
The children have really enjoyed their provision so far. They have been busy colouring, making bugs and habitats our of materials and they have really enjoying mixing colours and painting.
The children have really enjoyed exploring their new music area! We have had lots of wonderful performances of familiar songs played alongside instruments. The children have really enjoyed learning ‘Incy Wincy Spider’ which is linked to our class topic of minibeasts.
One of our children retold some nursery rhymes in our music area. We challenged him to add a beat to his music and he rose to the challenge!
Art and Design
Over the past two weeks lots of children have chosen to take on one of our rainbow challenges using paint. We have had some wonderful caterpillars created with mixing colours and matching colours to create a caterpillar. This week the challenge is to mix colours, talk about their choice of colours and create a butterfly. We have had some wonderful butterfly creations so far this week. Here are a few to showcase with you…
Some children have also taken on the challenge to create a minibeast out of match sticks using some of their fine motor skills. We think they did a great job!
This weeks challenge is to create a new spider for Spinderella’s football team. We shared pictures of spiders as a class and the children were then set the challenge of mixing colours to paint their own spider. We have had some colourful creations already!
One of the children’s favorite places to go is the mud kitchen! We love getting messy in FS2 and we have had some wonderful cakes made in our FS2 mud kitchen. This week, one of our children found a worm. They said the worm must be super worrm so lets make him a cake! What a great idea! Superworm deserves a cake after all his adventures!! Here are some action pictures of the children learning in the mud kitchen!
In the construction area, the children have been encouraged to talk about what they want to build, draw it out then create their model. We are working on our skills of plan, do and review as we go through FS2. Over the past few weeks the children have been challenged to build a house for a minibeast and then a maze for Superworm to travel through. We have had some detailed designs and models built using bricks and Lego. Here are a few of our completed challenges.
This week we have already had children taking on our Construction challenge. The children have been set the challenge of creating a new football pitch for Spinderella. We talked about the design and the children then worked together to create a super football pitch! We like the added ball and grass too!
We have been observing the children in their play over the past few weeks. We have seen a few children taking on the role of pirates and creating a pirate ships alongside our minibeasts theme. We decide to capture this learning and set a mini challenge for a few children to create a treasure map and a pirate ship linked to the Pirate Next door story that we read as a group. The children were engrossed in this story and we had some fantastic learning that took place after. The children made treasure maps, a message was sent in a bottle, a gigantic pirate ship was built out of crates and a boat made out of recycled materials that the children tested to see if it floated! It was lovely to see the children sharing this interest and some wonderful vocabulary been used.
We have enjoyed some more pirate action today! Some of the children created maps, messages in a bottle and also a new pirate ship! It was lovely to see the children working as a team and problem solving together. Pirates are definitely taking over in Reception!
We have started to create a home corner in our classroom. Today in the home corner, Mrs Hemming role played the story of Goldilocks and the Three bears. The children then set up a tea party for the Three bears and we had some wonderful cooking and role play taking place. Here are a few pictures of the children enjoying our class home corner.
Understanding the World
Minibeast Hunting in the woods
This week, the children have been exploring the woods to search for minibeasts. The children did a great job at finding them! We found a centipede, caterpillar, ant, spider and lots of slugs. Some of the children drew a picture of the the minibeasts they found and built a house to keep them safe. We will continue to build on our minibeast houses next week in the woods.
In class today we looked at a selection of minibeasts on the IWB. We talked about the different habitats the minibeasts live in and why they choose these habitats. We even got onto a discussion about the colours of some minibeasts and what the word camouflaged means. We took our leaning outside and searched for minibeast habitats. We found a spider spinning a web, a beautiful butterfly on our decking and lots of ladybirds! Some children even found a few ants and had a go at drawing them! The children were then set a challenge to make an ant out of play dough during our dough disco session!
Today we went back to the woods to look for different minibeast habitats. We looked at pictures and watched a few videos of minibeasts before we set of to the woods. We took some magnifying glasses, minibeast identification sheets, pictures of minibeasts and paper to draw the minibeasts we saw. The children discovered that some minibeasts like worms, millipedes and woodlice like it under rocks where is dark and warm. We were really impressed with the children’s curiosity about minibeasts and their excitement to learn in the woods. We had a great afternoon and hopefully the children will continue to hunt for minibeasts’ on their adventures outside of school. I have set them a challenge to hunt for spiders linked to our class text Spinderella over the next few weeks. We are looking forward to spider pictures on Tapestry over the next few days!
As part of our learning about looking after our world, we welcomed some very special visitors into our Nursery garden. Mrs Kelly brought Lucky the goat and Kinder and Angel chickens to come meet the children. The children found out where the animals live and we thought about how we have to care for the animals. The children had a stroke of the animals too and were even lucky enough to see Lucky the goat dance A big thank you to Mrs Kelly for this fabulous opportunity. The children all really enjoyed meeting the animals.
Signs of Autumn
We are enjoying seeing lots of your pictures on Tapestry of the objects you see in your environment that show Autumn is here. Here are a few from the weekend to share with you. Can you see what colors the leaves are turning into?
Creating a Volcano
In the garden today there was some lovely turn taking to create a volcano. Krystian described what a volcano was in detail. He told his friends that Volcanos have Lava, rocks and Magma that expload from the top. Here are some pictures of the children using their fine and gross motor skills to create a Volcano! I wonder if anyone in FS2 can create an exploading volcano at home?