Autumn Term 2 2019
Our prayer table is an integral part of our classroom; a place were we can reflect and gather our thoughts. We begin our day with our Collective Worship, focusing on the statement of the week; a thought for our class to think about and reflect on together. The children love to write their own prayers for us to use in class and these are thoughts that we place on our prayer tree. We will celebrate many saints days this year, but in particular our class saint- Saint Stephen.
.Our topic this half term is ‘Mysteries’ and we have been thinking about the difference between a mystery and a puzzle. We thought about a Rubix Cube and how it is a puzzle rather than a mystery, because there is a solution. It can often be very hard to complete a Rubix Cube, but it is achievable. We have been wondering about mysteries and how the outcomes of these aren’t as straight forward as a puzzle.
This week we are looking at The Holy Trinity and it’s meaning. We have discussed that before the world existed, God already existed as Father, Son and Holy Spirit – not three gods but three persons in one God which we call the Trinity.
We have been learning about the annunciation and how Mary found out the news that she was going to be the mother of Jesus. We tried really hard to put ourselves in Mary’s shoes and think about how it would have felt to receive this important news. After listening carefully to the story, we talk-partnered to discuss the emotions and feelings that Mary would have felt, we then acted the scene out in small groups. We felt this really helped us to appreciate the enormity of this news.
We continued our learning of the story of the birth of Jesus we began rehearsals for our FS2 and KS1 nativity. This year’s performance is called ‘Whoops-a-Daisy Angel’ and the children were absolutely magnificent. Not only did it help them to understand the story it also allowed them to shine in the spotlight and show how musical they are as well as showcasing great narrators and actors. Well done everyone!
We have started our half term with story writing in our English lessons and what a great job we have done of it so far. We are taking our character on an adventurous journey to the south pole, just like Ernest Shackleton did in the early 1900s and also like the character Tom in our book ‘The Great Explorer’. We have also been studying Shackelton in history and this has really helped us gain an excellent understanding of what it is like in Antarctica. We have also chosen a character and created a detailed description of them to help us, and our reader, paint a picture in our head of what this character looks like and how they act. We then created descriptive sentences about what Antarctica is like and how it would feel to be there. I cannot wait to read the final versions of each and every story,as the children are super excited about writing the adventures of their character.
The stories the children produced were fantastic and the use of amazing adjectives and expanded noun phrases generated descriptive writing, providing the reader with a vivid picture in their head. We edited our work throughout the process and also enjoyed peer-editing and helping each other to improve. When our story was complete, we decided that the use of speech at the end of our stories would create excitement, as this is the pivotal moment when the main character finally finds the lost person. We had great fun making human sentences of speech before writing them down and adding them to our stories.
We have been looking at newspaper reports in our English lesson and what better way to start studying this new genre than reading newspaper reports ourselves. So we sat back and relaxed and enjoyed browsing the First News, which we always like to have a look at together.
We looked at the features of a newspaper and the information that each ones provides the reader. We are planning on writing our own newspaper reports on the moon landing of 1969, so we will be using all the information we have learned about Neil Armstrong in History to help us with this task.
We loved creating our own headlines and our favourites were: Mission to Moon, Space Race and One Giant Leap…We tried very hard to use alliteration and rhyme.
We have started our half term by looking at the value of money and how much British coins are worth. We investigated how different coins can be used to make the same amount. We found ten different ways to make £1, knowing that there are many more combinations too! We carried out a Burn 2 Learn session to demonstrate this in a fun and interactive way. We had to find different coins around the classroom to bring back to the piece of paper to make the amount written on there.
Once we became confident in our use of coins we took our learning further by using part-whole models to show how a money amount can be split into different coins. We were great at this and it gave us a deeper understanding of how we can pay for one amount in different ways. We then had great fun using this knowledge to set up our own shops in class and traded our products by buying ans selling.
The next topic area for our maths is multiplication and we love learning our times tables in Year 2! However, multiplication goes beyond knowing our times tables by heart, we need to learn the different strategies required to gain a deep understanding of this mathematical operation. In order to do this we have been learning about and using arrays, repeated addition and understanding that multiplication is commutative.
Our KIRF focus this half term is on times tables. By the end of Year 2, the children need to be able to recite their 2, 3, 5 and 10 x tables to x12. We are beginning by recapping 2, 5 and 10 x table for instant recall and reverse division facts. We will then move on to counting in 3s, which will lead us to being able to recall 3 x table facts instantly.
We love to be active when learning our times tables!
In week 2 we had a science week and what a wonderful week we had. The children have learned so much about different aspects of science in a fun and interactive way. On Wednesday we had a visit from a science expert who provided us with a workshop all about plants. The children learned about how plants work and the transportation system that allows the plant to gather water to help make their food. The children found out all about this fascinating subject through investigations using food colouring and celery sticks! The children could see how a plant absorbs water and transports it through the stem to the leaves by observing the veins of the celery and watching the coloured water absorb and rise up.
In class on Thursday we investigated the scientific questions ‘Can we bend water?’, ‘Do sweets dissolve in water?’ and ‘How can we blow up a balloon without blowing into it?’. We had so much fun predicting, investigating and observing. We tried to use our knowledge of the world to help us predict. We thought about materials that definitely dissolve, before predicting what might happen to Smarties and M and Ms. We found that the coating of the sweets did dissolve in water, but not the sweet itself. This was because it was the food colouring that dissolved in water, leaving the sweet behind that is insoluble.
To decide whether or not we can bend water, we had to learn about static electricity. The children knew that if we rubbed our jumper with a balloon and then placed it over our head, the connection between the balloon and our hair would cause static electricity; for fun we carried this out anyway! I then posed the question, could we use static electricity to bend water? We had to discuss and decide how we would do it. We decided to use the same method and the result was amazing. The children learned that the water features both positive and negatively charged particles and is neutral. Positive and negative charges are attracted to each other so when you move the negatively charged balloon towards the stream, it attracts the water’s positively charged particles and the stream bends.
Internet safety is the topic of our computing work this half term and this links really well with our work on keeping safe in PSHE. We began by discussing what being ‘online’ means and how the children use devices such as computers, tablets and mobile phones. We then looked at the rules of being safe online. Did you know there is a kids You Tube that allows children to watch videos more safely? Do you know the age restrictions of popular social media apps and sites? Take a look at the picture below to find out.
The site below is a really useful tool for talking about internet safety with your children.
We are very excited this half term about creating our very own Christmas decoration! This is going to involve the design technology skill of needle work. To begin with we started by looking at examples of fabric Christmas Decorations and explaining our likes and dislikes about them. We also commented on ideas that we would like to take away for our own design and how Christmas colours are important when making a decoration for the festive season. We will then design our own Christmas decoration and think carefully about the embellishments that we can include.
We have started our sewing! The patience, determination and sweat that has gone into our over-stitch work has been worth it! What a great job the children have done at practicing their sewing, reviewing it and then trying again to develop their skill further. We have also buddied up in sewing partners to help and support each other in making our Christmas decorations.
After practicing our over-stitch and running stitch, we evaluated our seamstress skills by looking at our work and saying what was successful and improvements that could be made. Once we were happy with our handy work and our designs, we started to work on our Christmas decorations by sewing two pieces of felt fabric together using our sewing skills.
The children absolutely loved learning all about Our Beautiful World last half term that they wanted to continue learning about different countries. Therefore, I thought there was no other option than to study great explorers and learn about the countries that they discovered. The children are so enthused about this topic and can’t wait to learn all about Ernest Shackleton, Christopher Columbus and Neil Armstrong.
To begin with we learned all about the adventures of Ernest Shackleton, who wanted to be the first person to reach the South Pole. We learned so many interesting facts about Antarctica and his expeditions to this desolate place. The children had so many questions to ask that we researched, watched video clips and participated in hot seating! In our topic work we linked our learning to maths and English by studying how long Shackleton’s journeys took, using calendars, and wrote all about his life using our knowledge of fact-files.
We continued our work on Great Explorers by finding out all about Neil Armstrong. We left Earth far behind us and ventured through the atmosphere to the moon. the children can recall many interesting facts about this important moment in history. We researched information about the moon landing by using ipads, topic books and the work we had studied in English when writing newspaper reports.
The purpose of our music this half term is to perform and compose music and there’s no better way to do this than to learn the amazing songs fro our much anticipated Nativity. This year our performance is Whoops-a-Daisy Angel and it includes lots of festive songs for us to perform and compose accompanying music to. To begin with, we listened carefully to the melody of the music and then began to join in when we we were confident with the lyrics. To begin with we sang along to a backing singer, but already we are ready to go solo and want to show everyone how beautifully we can sing.
Next, we will be adding percussion to the music as well as actions and dance movements!
What a fabulous time we have had learning the songs for our nativity. We were able to recognise the rhythm to songs, as well as the pitch and tone and how these can change. Adding percussion really created a festive atmosphere to our performance. The children worked together to create an amazing production and the songs took the roof off the building!
This half term is all about the dancing! We are going to be dancing to sea-shanty music that evokes how life would have been like on the ships of Ernest Shackleton as he set sail to Antarctica. We started by listening to the music and appreciating the beat and the rhythm. We then thought about how we can put actions to the beat that would depict what the sailors would have done. We had children walking the plank, scrubbing the decks and climbing the rigging to reach the Crow’s Nest.
This half term is all about keeping safe. We started this topic by thinking about how to keep ourselves safe on Bonfire Night. We thought about all the important rules of looking after ourselves while we enjoy the fun of the fireworks and sparklers. These were the important rules that we came up with to follow when using sparklers:
The gloves will protect your hands and reduce the chances of getting burnt from stray sparks or heat from the spark itself.
Never use them indoors.
Always keep sparklers outdoors – the hot sparks that fly from sparklers can very easily cause fire when coming into contact with a variety of materials.
Always supervise children.
Even if there are older children around, you must always supervise them when carrying sparklers.
Don’t light more than one at once.
Don’t rush when lighting sparklers or fireworks. Take your time and ensure you are always being extra careful. Always concentrate on one at a time to prevent multiple sparklers from lighting at once. The power from a bunch of lit sparklers can cause a lot of damage to your skin from the heat.
Remember: both fireworks and sparklers should be lit at arm’s length.
Place used sparklers in sand or water.
Water and sand can cool down the hot part of a sparkler very quickly.
Using this knowledge we then created our own posters to tell others how to keep safe.
To continue our work on keeping safety, we had a day with the Road Safety Team to learn all about staying safe when we are out and about. We learned how to cross the road sensibly and safely having lessons both in and outside the classroom.