Autumn 2 2021

Welcome back Year 1! We hope you have had a lovely half term, spent with your family and friends.

This half term the children have chosen “Into the woods” as their topic. We have lots of exciting learning planned, including our first school trip and a visit from birds of prey. Take a look at our class newsletter to find out more.


Collective Worship

Week 1
This week our theme for Collective Worship has been “Peace”. During collective worship each day we have spoken about what it means to be at peace. We have listened to the word of God when reading the Bible and made links between what it says about peace and how we can put our faith into action.

Week 2
This week our theme has been remembrance. Throughout the week we have been thinking of those who have fought for our country and continue to do so today. We have given thanks to God for looking after those people and their families. On Thursday at 11am we took part in a 2min silence to remember those who have lost their lives.


Week 3
Our statement of the week, this week has been I am happiest when we are united. During collective worship we have reflected on a Psalm. It read, how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity. We discussed as a class how we live in unity, helping and supporting one another to follow Jesus’s teachings.

Preparing for Jesus’s Birth

In Collective Worship we have been preparing for Jesus’s birth. We have been doing this through listening to the Christmas story in the Bible (Luke) and reflecting on each key event. As we have done this we have had an advent wreath (made by some of the children) as our centre piece, with the advent candles lit to the side. This images reminds the children of the true meaning of Christmas. 


Week 2
This half term our topic is “Mary our Mother”. We have started our learning journey by reflecting on what we already know about Mary from our work on “God’s Family” in FS2. The children recalled that Mary was Jesus’s Mother and that she was visited by an angel to tell her that she had been chosen by God. They also remembered that Mary was there when Jesus died on the cross.

From this we revisited Angel Gabrial’s visit to Mary and consider how she may have felt after his visit. To support us with this we did some hot seating that helped us to understand Mary’s perspective.

Week 3
This week we read Luke 1: 39-45 and learnt about Mary’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth. The chilsren listened carefully and we discussed what a promise was. The children then answered questions about the Bible story in order to further their understanding. This learning included making their own promises to God. It was fantastic to hear so many children make promises linked to looking after God’s world and those within it.

Week 4
This week the children have learnt how Mary and Joseph prepared for Jesus’s birth and began to think about how we prepare for Jesus’s birth on Christmas day. We talked about Advent and what we do as Catholics during this special time. One way that we prepare is to light candles on an advent wreath,  four Sundays before Christmas day and then the last candle on Christmas day. The children learnt about each candles colour and meaning before making, colouring and labelling their own.

CAFOD Workshop

Today Maggie from CAFOD visited us to share Laudato Si’ Action Platform that has been launched by Pope Francis to inspire and encourage the global Catholic Church to reflect on their part in the care of God’s creation and love of neighbour.

Maggie represented this message with two animal characters in a story. The children asked and answered questions, before writing their own promises on what they would try to do to help God’s world or thy neighbour. We talked about thy neighbour being all people on Earth, who God created.

Weeks 5 and 6

Over the last two weeks we have been focusing on the children’s understanding of the Christmas story. We have done this in many ways, including practising for our Nativity with Year 1, listening to the Bible, re-telling the story with fugures and sequencing the story in the children’s books.





Week 1
This half term our focus book is “The woods” by Rob Hodgson. This week the children have read the story in our own outdoor area and spent the week getting to know the characters. This has included asking the characters questions and hot seating them!

Week 2
This week we found a diary entry from one of our characters (Tall Fox) discarded in our woodland. The children were very excited to read it! As we read it we noticed that it was written in the past tense.

From this we have focused on the difference between past and present tense and explored the spelling rule “ed”. As part of this learning we have written sentences related to our focus book The Woods in the past tense. In a couple of weeks we will apply this learning when writing our own diary entries.

Week 3
This week we have continued our learning jounrey by exploring adjectives that we can use to help us write our dairy entries. We recapped what adjectives were from last half term: “used to describe a noun”. We then explored different adjectives that we can use to describe the setting and characters of our story, the woods.

Week 4
This week we have started to bring all our learning so far together, in order to write our own dairy entries. To help us with the structure of our sentences we have done lots of talk partner work, sharing our ideas verbally and then putting them into sentences before we write them. We have also used colour coding to support us with this and remind us what we want to include in our sentences in order for them to make sense.


Week 5

This week the children have been on their very first school trip to Ledston Woods! When we returned the children were keen to write diary entries about their trip. The children carefully planned their ideas by drawing each main part of the day and refered back to this whilst writing. I have been blown away by the children’s hard work with their writing this half term, well done Year 1!





This half term we are focusing on addition and subtraction. We are starting our learning by focusing on number bonds to 10. This week we focused on knowing all number bonds for all numbers between 1 and 10. We did this practically before recording it in part, part whole models. Once we are confident with this fluency aspect of our learning we will move on to varied fluency, exploring how number bonds can be represented in different ways.

To help consolidate our learning and develop our mental maths we have been playing hoop hop. The children have to hop through the hoops until they meet their opponant. I then asked them to give me any pair of number bonds to make a given number. The fastest to tell me could continue hopping through the hoops until they met their next opponant. The aim was to get to the other side by answering the questions the quickest.

Now we are confident with number bonds to 10 we are now moving on to number bonds to 20. This week we have started with fluency activities to ensure that we have an understanding of the concept. Next we will be moving onto varied fluency.

We are now confident with number bonds to 20 and have started to apply our understanding to solve problems. We are now progressing onto doubling facts for numbers 0-20. We have started this week with fluency and a Jack Hartman song.

Now that the children are developing their confidence with doubling we are moving onto halving and exploring the relationship between doubling and halving.


This half term our focus in science is plants. To kick start our topic we shared what we already knew about plants based on our previous experiences in FS2. The children made fantastic links in their learning, remembering that when we learnt about God’s World we learnt that trees enable us to breath! We also made links to our learning on God’s Great plan, sharing how it is our job to look after plants and trees as part of God’s world.


We then moved on to exploring what equipment we would need to plant our own beans/ seeds. Once we had all the equipment together the children planted their own bean in a plastic cup so that we can see each stage of the growing proccess. We talked about ensuring that we keep the plastic cup once the bean plant grows and needs to be repotted or about recycling it so that we are not using single plastic, which is bad for the environment. Once the beans were planted the children completed the first part of their bean diary. Each week they will update it, recording the beans growth.

This week we have began focusing on identifying different plants by name. We have started by looking at wild plants and discussing what it means if a plant is wild. We then went on a wild plant hunt on our school grounds! To record what we found the children applied their maths skills by making a tally. We then drew conclusions about what we had found and why we thought certain plants were more common than others. The children demonstrated a fantastic understanding!

This week we have explored garden plants. We started by thinking about why we plant flowers in our gardens. Some of the responses were:

They look and smell nice.

Bees get the necter from them to make honey.

Plants and trees help us to breath!

We then explored some common garden plants, naming and describing them. To demonstrate this understanding we each then designed our own garden with our favourite flowers in. We labelled them and applied our English learning by adding an adjective.

This week the children have learnt about the different parts of a plant and then made their own and added labels.

Ledston Woods School Trip

Last week the children enjoyed their very first school trip! We travelled to Ledston woods on a coach. When we arrived we spent some time in the outdoor classroom learning about seeds and trees. The children loved learning about the different types of seeds, how animals help seeds to disperse them. We then went outside and played some games that helped us understand the structure of a tree and how squirels collect acorns for the winter. We then had lunch inside the classroom. After lunch we listened to a story about woodland animals and then went into the woods to make woodland homes. The children thoroughly enjoyed their trip and will be extending their learning from it this week in science.

Birds of Prey

Today we had birds of prey visit us in Year 1! The children were very excited as they went to meet them in the hall. One by one each bird came out to meet the children. Each bird flew around the hall whilst their handler Chris told the children all about them! The children were amazed and very excited when they got the oppotunity to hold one!







This half term we wil be focusing on coding. We will use Scratch Junior to do this, creating characters and settings in which the children can put instructions in to bring the stories to life.

Over the last few weeks the children have inserts and created their own characters, used the drawing tool to desgin their own settings and then inputted instructions to move the characters across the screen. Take a look at some of them!

Online Bullying

As part of Anti-Bullying we have today learnt about online bullying and what this looks like. We have linked the new learning back to our important message of STOP BLOCK TELL if something happens online that makes you feel uncomfortable. We have also made links with bullying that we have talked about that can happen in person and the simmilairites and differences between them. The children could all say what they would do if they saw any kind of bullying happening or if it was happening to them- tell someone they trust!


This half term we are focusing on the work of Henri Matisse, a French artist who is famous for both is paintings and collages.

This week we had an introduction to Henri Matisse’s life and work. We made connections to our French learning that the children began last half term with Miss Hutchinson. I was very impressed with how confidently the children have picked up key French phrases as part of this learning and facts that they already knew about Paris where Matisee was born. The children then looked at Matisee’s work, commenting on the colours and shapes. They then gave their opinions on his works, stating what they prefered and why.

Over the last two weeks we have been exploring collage. We started by using shapes and colours as Henri Matisse did in his piece The Snail. We then began to link collage to our topic of Into the Woods by collecting materials that we found in our woods to create our own natural collages.

We have then planned our own pieces of art, aimining to create woodland artwork using natural materials and our collaging skills that we have developed this half term. Take a look at how we got on!


This half term our History topic is Family Favourites, following on from our learning all about our family heritage. As part of our learning we will be focusing on toys through the generations. This week the children have considered their own toys, what they do and what they are made from. We then came up with some questions to ask others about toys that they played with as a child. Next week we have a special visitor coming into school to tell us all about their toys and how they differ to ours.

This week Mrs Jacobs visited us in class with toys that she played with as a child. The children loved asking her their questions and exploring the toys first hand! Thank you Mrs Jacobs for sharing your wonderful toys with us! As part of this lesson the children also used the iPad’s to do their own research on toys from the past. As they researched the children took notes on what they found.

To finish the lesson we all shared what we had found out about toys from the past, from our online research and from speaking to Mrs Jacobs.

Over the last few weeks we have explored toys from different time periods, focusing on early 1900’s and Victorian toys. We have learnt that many toys from the past we still play with today however, they are often now made from plastic where they were made from metal and wood.

This week we brought all of our learning together when we sorted different toys onto a timeline, using what we have learnt across the half term.

We concluded that toys from the past are similar to the ones we have today. However, today we have a greater range of toys and many more now use the latest technology.



This half term the children are focusing on the song “The teddy bears have their picnic’ in line with our woodland theme. This week the children identified the beat of a tune and learned the words tempo, dynamics and pitch. The children listened to the song ‘The teddy bears have their picnic’ and then joined in with the words. We discussed that the tempo is the speed of the song and the children said that it was a fast song, much faster than nursery rhymes. They learned that the dynamics (volume) was quite quiet but much louder when they joined in! We explored the pitch further, creating high pitch and low pitch sounds before identifying a mixture of both in the song. After listening to the song again, the children joined in by clapping to the beat of the tune whilst singing along.

In today’s music session, the children were challenged to choose sounds to create a particular effect and to create a mixture of different sounds using a variety of instruments. We looked at the different instruments and the children named them. The children were asked to think carefully about what happens in the song, the setting and the characters within it and to then choose an instrument to match this. 
Theo “Drums for chopping the trees in the wood.”
Darcey “Scraper because it sounds like the teddy bears dancing.”
George “Tambourine goes with the music.”
Charlotte ” Egg shaker for when the wind blows the trees.”
Sophia “Shake the tambourine faster when the bear falls into the water.”
For the first half of the song the children chose maracas, drums and shakers. Then when the music became faster, they used tambourines and bells. The children then put all of this together as they sang the song. 

In today’s Music session the children started by learning some Christmas Makaton, such as the signs for Christmas tree, Father Christmas and reindeer. They then learned ‘Away in a Manger’ and the Makaton for the song. The children did a fantastic job of joining in with the singing and signs. 



During our French lesson today, the children continued to listen to and respond to French phrases. After joining in with a song in French with actions, the children all said ‘bonjour’ to one another. They then practiced asking and answering ”Comment t’appelles tu?” and ”Ca va?”. The children were asked these questions individually and responded, they then asked Miss Hutchinson for her to respond with either ”Je m’appelle Miss Hutchinson” or ”Tres bien merci”.
We then discussed what the words ‘Mum’ and ‘Dad’ are in French and discovered that they are Maman and Papa. The children really enjoyed saying ”Hello Mum and Dad” in French.
Today in MFL we learned more French phrases and had our first conversation in French. The children started by recapping the words and phrases that they already know, focusing on ‘ca va?’ Ted remembered that ‘tres bien merci’ meant ‘very good thank you’. Darcey said that ‘bien’ is ‘good’. Today the children found out that ‘et toi?’ means ‘and you?’ and were then able to use their previous knowledge to have a conversation. Dominic and Lottie modelled this first.
Lottie “Ca va?”
Dominic “Bien merci, et toi?”
Lottie “Tres bien merci.” 
With a partner, the children then had a go at this themselves, choosing to either answer with ‘tres bien’, ‘bien’ or ‘ca va’ for how they were feeling. We then listened to a song in French and the children listened out for the words that they knew. 
Today we started our French session by saying some our well-known phrases that we have been learning over the previous weeks. We then looked at a PowerPoint together and found out all about how people in France celebrate Christmas. We discovered lots of similarities and differences. For example, in France they leave shoes out for presents to be put in but we leave stockings. Both countries have turkey for Christmas dinner, however in France they may also have food like cheese and lobster. Christmas trees are decorated in both countries and in France they say Joyeux Noel for Merry Christmas. 


This half term our theme is “Be yourself”. This week our focus was “Marvellous me”. All the children thoughout about and discusssed what they enjoy and are good at. We then thoughout shared things with our friends that we thought were great about them and shared how this made the children feel. The children unamoiously said it made them feel happy and caused them to smile. We linked this learning back to a PSHE lesson in FS2 where we had two apples.One we said kind things to and one we said nasty things to. When we cut them both open the one that we said kind things to was juicy and ripe. The one we said unkind things we mushy and rotten. This helped to emphasis the importance of always being kind with our words. The children then wrote on the points of a star all the things that made them marvellous. It was fantastic to hear the children share all their amazing qualities and talents.

Anti-Bullying Week 

This week has been Anti-Bullying week. In Year 1 we have focused on this each day as part of our Colective Worship. We have also had circle time during our PSHE lessons where we have recapped what bullying is and what we can do if we see it happening. We then focused on the theme for this year which is One Kind Word. We talked about the power of our words and the impact they can have on others. We said kind words to each other and discussed how it made us feel. The children unanimously said it made them happy! To spread this happiness the children each decorated a page with kind words and pictures of kind acts. We then took them to the children in Year 5 and gave them each one to keep in their draw. The idea is that when they need a boost they can look at their kind word sheet to give them that happy feeling inside.

Inspiring you week

This week was Inspiring you week in school. We started the week by exploring different jobs and professions, addressing some gender stereotypes around who can do what jobs. After lots of discussion we concluded that anyone can be anything, the most important thing is that you enjoy the job that you do! Based on this the children thought about their interests and hobbies and we linked these to possible future jobs. The children then draw them in a future role. We had doctors, marine biologists, teachers and dancers! It was fantastic to hear the children be so aspirational.

Across the week we had different workshops, aimed to give the children experiences of different proffessions and hobbies.

First the children have a visit from Dan who works for Yorkshire Ambulance Service. He brought in some of the medical equipment that he uses in his job and shared it with the children, along with his role. He then showed the children the ambulance. The children enjoyed learning about the different monitors and equipment. A highlight for the children was watching the lights and sirens!

Later on in the week the children had a Martial Arts experience. The children loved learning some moves and learning more about Martial Arts.

Finally, the children had a visit from Dogs Trust. The children learnt about a Dog called Bruno and his experience at Dogs Trust and the home they found him with a family.





This half term the children are doing Gymnastics once a week with Miss Hutchinson as one of their PE lessons.

This week the children had their first Gymnastics session in PE. Their objectives were to be able to move with control and an awareness of space as well as copy and remember actions. After discussing why we need to warm up and the affect it has on our bodies, the children explored moving around the hall in different ways, stopping to balance on one leg when instructed to do so. They took big steps, tip toed and moved swiftly around the space. The children then explored points of contact, balancing using different parts of their bodies. They created different shapes with their body such as a teapot or elephant and then worked with a partner to create a specific shape such as a tree. To finish on the children attempted to roll over, hold their head and upper torso up off the ground when on their front and move across the floor like a snake.

During their previous gymnastics sessions, the children have been working on rolling in different ways and jumping and landing safely off some of the apparatus. Today they were challenged to put these together to create a sequence. After a warm up of the car game to get the children listening, moving, negotiating space and jumping, the children worked together to safely set up the mats and benches. The children jumped on the spot and then off the benches, before recapping some of the rolls they already know, such as lifting their head or feet whilst rolling and stretching their arms and legs out. They then put these two actions together, taking it in turns to step onto the bench, jump onto the mat and then roll to the other end of the mat. For a cool down, the children did some big moves, moving across the mats in different ways, before creating a small shape and lying still. They then worked together to safely put the apparatus away again.

During today’s PE session, the children used the skills that they have learned in Gymnastics to balance in different ways. They started off by making different Christmas shapes individually and then with a partner. They made snowflakes, stockings, trees and reindeers to name a few! Back in the classroom, the children took part in some relaxation, by listening to a Christmas story and copying some of the gentle exercises and stretches from it.

Motor Skills

This half term we are continuing to develop the children fine and gross motor skills to support their development. We are doing this in a variety of sifferent ways. In PE lessons we are all doing “Big Moves” at the end of each session. Big moves is a range of movements that help to develop the children’s bigger movements in their bodies. This in turn will support their smaller movements (fine motor skills) and support areas such as handwriting.

We also have a range of fine motor activities as part of our provision and morning work. Our current focus is scissor skills as this was an area for development. The children have been pracitsing holding their scissors and paper correctly and moving the scissors accurately in order to cut the paper with precision.

Sponsored Run!

This morning the children braved the cold and took part in their sponsored run to raise money for classroom resources and enhancements. Before the children got started they warmed up with Mrs Powell who got them raring to go. The children worked super hard, running as many laps as they could in 20mins. The average was around 10 laps with the most being 17 ran by William and Ted. A huge well done to all the children, as you can see from the photographs they had a great time!