Friday 19th July
Last full week of being a Rainbow. As teachers we have very mixed feelings: we are proud of the incredible journey we have been on together and the progress in all things educational- reading, writing, maths, social, emotional, physical...but we are also going to feel bereft. It never seems to get any easier saying goodbye to you and them. In that sense Mrs Flynn and I envy Mrs Lumsden who will have the pleasure next year. But change is good and they will cope with it well. On those occasions when they don't, remember the occasions this year that were wobbly and remember how they did not last all that long after all; just keep talking to us and supporting us and we'll do our very best for your child- throughout their Muscliff years.
Wednesday's celebration day went very well. We started on the field with the whole school and sang to a very surprised Mrs Wyatt and then presented her with cards from each year group (ours had a large rainbow on the front and every single child had written their name in the rainbow. It looked fab and their handwriting did not look like a YR child's!!). Lunchtime was on the field as a whole school as well so we had a play with some of our buddies which was cool. Take a look at the new feature in the playground 'Maggie's Garden' and spot the dangly things that we made last week.
Our beach trip went well. Never have I been in a coach with such excitable children who screamed and walloped every time we turned a corner or went over a bump! Oh we love 5 year olds!! Despite a pretty chilly and rainy long walk (it seemed!) to our beach spot, the day was glorious, they played beautifully, behaved very well and safely and were just a joy really. The parent helpers made our day successful with their full-on participation- thank you. I bet you were dreaming about those buckets of sea water that night weren't you!
And so to our last 2 days. We have a bouncy castle for a bit on Tuesday thanks to the MPA who got it for us in recompense for us not being part of the discos this year (good decision!). Do you fancy helping the MPA next year? It really isn't as much a commitment as you might think. Some people can't make the evening meetings but that does not mean you won't be able to be a huge part of this much-needed resource that your child benefits from so much in every year group. They have funded some new books, the space dome, the butterflies, new maths and phonics games, Doodle Maths, outdoor play equipment, guided reading texts...Next year your child will get more books, Doodle Maths and English, the chicks (y1 highlight!!), help with a trip and that's only the stuff I know about now! Please try to join- your school needs you!!
So we're off to start painting our classrooms this weekend and continuing the prep for their Y1 year. Here's to the final lovely Monday and Tuesday.
Friday 12th July
'Creativity takes courage' (Henri Matisse)
Doesn't it just! But when you're 5, you have courage in abundance for stuff like painting, collage, weaving, outside living art and haven't they just shown us that this week! We have loved having our Y5 buddies around to show us how to make a 'God's Eye' and some are now dangling in Mrs Wyatt's garden. School looks amazing - Mrs Lee clearly has an 'art-load' of courage and we commend her dedication and organisation for this arts week.
We have also had our park trips to get excited about this week. Thank you for coming and particularly for trying to make contact with a parent who will be in your class next year but that you didn't know until the park. It was lovely to see how positive you were about next year- almost as positive as the children. And isn't the morning gate routine going well?
Our days have remained on timetable and will continue to do until the last couple of days as we find this helps the children to be less 'tetchy' - a word needing to be taught right now!! We are doing guided reading every morning, phonics, maths/English and will carry on so please keep reading every night- to them if not with them. The word bags will be collected in from Monday so we need you to return any words you have so that we can use them next year. We really appreciate your support with this. You can continue practising the words of course as they will be on the reading record.
We have finished all our assessments now (although not our learning!) and will not be adding any more to Tapestry. We will be sending you an email link so you can download your child's learning journal if you want to. There is a time limit on the download. We hope you enjoy re-reading this document of their first year in school as much as we have recently.
The Rainbows are in fierce competition at the moment to secure the Doodle Trophy. We love that we are starting to get back on track with more children creating those streaks. We completely rely on your input with this so pat on your back! We honestly think it has had quite an impact on their maths learning. Don't stop now! (If you need it recalibrating because it is getting too hard, please tell your teacher- preferably before the summer hols!)
See main page for details. Please be kind to us weather! Not too hot and sunny, no rain. Thanks!
Also : check out Dates for your diary for the last few days of Rainbows.
Thank you morning:
We are very grateful for the support of parents throughout the year – if you have been a reading ranger, volunteered in a classroom or helped on a trip, or given any of your time to support MPA with events please come along on Friday 19thJuly 9.30-10.30am for refreshments and entertainment provided by the children. Please email email@example.com or pop into the office to let us know you can attend.
Striding into transition this week the children have been amazing and faced this next step on their journey with maturity and readiness. And we prepare them very well. They are excited to be in year 1, have a new teacher and play with new friends. Over the coming weeks as we head towards the end of term we will be continuing our transition work with the children by visiting the year 1 base, talking to their new teachers and coming in through the gates they will use in September. More information about the gates and other transition questions can be found in the other folder on our class page. Having done this for a few years now we know they will be absolutely fine and will no doubt skip through the new gates happily. September can always be a bit wobbly (we teachers can feel that way too!!) and you know how important it is that you show confidence in their resilience and for school life in general and it’ll be Christmas performance time before you know it!
Another ‘service’ we provide is an opportunity for parents to accompany the new classes for a park visit next week. This visit gives the children the another opportunity to play with their new classmates and the parents a chance to meet. We will all leave school at 2pm to walk to the park together with staff, children and parents. If you are not coming back to collect siblings then you are able to go straight home from the park or stay and enjoy. For any parents who cannot attend your child will still go to the park and will come back to school with staff for your usual home time arrangements.
Thank you for all of the payments we have received towards the beach trip so far. If you have yet to pay please could we have these in ASAP so that the trip can go ahead. Many thanks for your understanding. We will give you full details of the trip expectations in an email next week.
As the end of the summer term approaches we get even busier than before! There are lots of different things going on and lots of different things to remember! Below are some reminders to help:
Have a lovely weekend and we look forward to seeing you at our annual Summer Fayre (was it really a year ago that some of you came and said hello??).
Here comes the sun! What a fantastic week it has been with the weather finally starting to brighten as we start the summer months. And wasn’t it just perfect for sports day! The Rainbows excelled themselves and it was a lovely afternoon.
We are really enjoying our water topic and this week we have been reading ‘Shark in the Park’ by Nick Sharratt. This has led to our investigations into creatures that live in the water with a particular focus on whales and whale watching. They have learnt words like ‘blowhole, tubercles, breaching’ as well as the ‘proper’ term for killer whales – orcas. More importantly we talked about why we shouldn’t call them killer whales although we didn’t quite down to learning ‘pejorative’ and it’s not exactly ‘fake news’ as they are indeed huge predators. It has been exciting to see the children so enthusiastic about other creatures we share our planet with.
In maths we have been revising our learning over the course of the year. We are working to cement skills such as one to one correspondence, finding numbers out of order following a pattern, accurate counting of objects from a larger set and number recognition. The Rainbows are excellent mathematicians and we wish we could take all the credit but as usual it’s also very much partly down to how much you do at home so keeeeeeeeep doodling!
Summer term is always so very busy and the children are taking everything in their stride showing us how ready they are becoming to transition in to year 1. We will be so very sad to see them go but will be ensuring over the next few weeks that they are ready and prepared for their next adventure. We will be having lots of visits down to the new bases to familiarise the children and lots of circle times to ask and answer questions they may have. Next Wednesday they will have the opportunity to spend some time in their new classroom with their new class mates and new teacher. This is always very exciting and the children come back from these sessions absolutely sparkling with enthusiasm for their next rung on the school ladder. You are then invited to find out more this and meet the Y1 teachers yourself at the transition meeting on Wednesday.
We are pleased to announce the safe arrival of Mrs Connolly’s baby girl! We wish her and her family a happy and healthy time as they settle in with their new addition.
Have a wonderfully sunny weekend.
Monday 24th June
SO how cute was sports day?! Nativity and sports day- 2 very important times in your child's schooling. Thank you for supporting us to support them. We enjoyed watching them enjoy themselves.
See you tomorrow.
Friday 21st June
Here we are... the busiest time of the year for teachers (thank goodness we had half term hols to write reports!) as we coordinate diaries across the year groups, organise trips and more visitors, watch performances, check PE bags again - and again- and again and also keep up with our daily reading, maths, English, phonics, topic, storytime and star of the day...it's important to keep a routine in place for their sense of security and for them to remember that growing your brain is why you're at school!
So half of us went to St Michael's this morning to complete an art project there and half of St Michael's YR came to us. They were all stupendously grown up and excited and friendly and arty
I can't vouch for the other minibuses but my occupants were certainly very loud! It wasn't the Wheels on the Bus, more like the 'Bellowing on the Bus'! I did wonder if the whole trip could be a minibus journey round the car park- oh to be 5 years old!
We are looking forward to sports day (afternoon) on Monday. You have already had the information that you need but in case you've forgotten:
House colour t-shirt needed Monday morning. Named.
Water bottles. Named.
We will get them changed into shorts, t-shirt, plimsolls/trainers. They will be asked to go to the toilet before we go out to minimise that disruption.
1.45 (our) gate will be open for you to go around the back to the field.
2pm we will come out in our house team groups and sit at our first activity.
After a few minutes, we ring a bell which signifies change. You and the children move round.
We ask you NOT to make physical contact with your child as it tends to upset the children, if not yours then the others! Wave, smile, take photos, blow kisses but no child should be with their adults unless a staff member has given them to you.
At the end of the celebrations we will get the children back in the classroom to collect their things.
You come to the back of the classroom doors and collect them to take straight home. (Unless you're waiting for a sibling)
We hope you will have a smashing time being proud of your Rainbow and seeing how much progress they have made in 9 short months. We are.
Have a great weekend and keeeeeeeep doodling and reading.
Friday 14th June
"Get out. Stay out. Call 999".
Behaviour gone to pot? No of course not, just our wonderful firefighters from Blue Watch at Redhill helping us be safe. We had a really magical starter on Tuesday learning about fire engines and fire safety. I hope your child was able to talk through a lot of the information on the handout that was sent home with the pencil. Our emergency services are amazing! As staff, we particularly liked the fact that there was a female firefighter to inspire career-driven Rainbow girls to have ambitious aspirations.
You may have noticed that the reading records are a little different on the front these last 2 weeks. The spelling focus is blank. In previous terms we have been looking at our RR words in our phonics sessions and reading them as our emphasis for the EYFS expected level is reading over spelling but at this stage of the year, there should be a number of key words that children can spell accurately. With this in mind, we have delved into the world of 'phonics groups' and created 4 groups of children with very specific targets in mind. We are so proud of the children - they have not been in the least bit fazed by this change of routine. Can your child tell you who their (new?) phonics teacher is and what they have been learning this week?
Interested in helping your Rainbow become a 'speller'? First they need to read- confidently and not sounding out- the RR words. Next they need to know that some words in English are not phonetic. The more they read, the more they will start to subconsciously assimilate spelling so that you can start to help them with challenging words eg: How do I spell 'what'?
Here are 3 words. One of them is correctly spelt, two are not. Read them and decide.
wot/what/whot. Children with confident reading will learn to passively learn the correct spelling and this will then turn into a strategy for them to work out the spelling of any word in the future.
So as we talk about grown up stuff like spelling, we turn our attention to Year 1. Reluctantly. With heavy hearts. Letting go of our gorgeous children is such a wrench. The three of us are used to it by now but still keen to keep them forever! Our transition process is rigorous. We teachers have already asked the children who their 3 (or more) chosen friends are from their present class and at least 1 from a different class and we have started the long process of considering new Year 1 classes. We have had an initial trial of Plan A which was very successful and - as expected- the children just got on with it and played with children and things they wanted to play with. Plan B is now underway as we have made some tweaks. It will never be perfect - if only little humans were! - but our experience and knowledge of the children goes a long way. Often it is you, the adults, who have to deal with the transition far more than them and we will help you as well- see diary dates for the 'YR to Y1' meeting.
Thank you for the Australasia homework. We have enjoyed learning about a country Australia this week and how far away it is. Mrs Lumsden's husband has kindly lent us his Australian flag but sadly not his wallaby or koala. Next stop: The Great Barrier Reef and how to look after our seas and oceans. And then we journey to St Michael's (and they visit us) to make new friends and artwork on Friday.
Please keep 'Doodling' and reading regularly- it makes such a difference. Here's to a dry-ish weekend!
P.s. Anyone up for helping our very small band of MPA? Either giving 30mins of your time at the Summer Fayre or generally joining the committee. We can't tell you how much we rely on their funding.
Friday 7th June
Welcome back! So this is our final half term. We really can’t believe how quickly the time has gone. It's been really noticeable this week how much more mature the children are; all that hard work is paying off- this foundation year is so important to their life-long learning growth mindsets. We appreciate all your support and the big part you play in this. Thank you.
We are looking forward to having an excellent last few weeks exploring our wonderful water topic. As an intro to our new topic we have been reading The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister. The children have been very creative making their own rainbow fish and other sea creatures for display in the classroom. We have also spent time thinking about the moral of the story and discussing how we treat our friends and why we should share and be kind. Next week we’re looking forward to delving into our Septenary project with a day dedicated to the continent we are exploring: Australasia. For your home learning we would like you to find out a fact about Australasia and bring it in for show and tell Tuesday 11th July. You can present it any way you like: poster, picture, post card. Get creative!
Our assembly today was from the NSPCC about speaking out and being safe. It was very well led by the educators and our children received the message that a child should not be worried and if they are they need to tell a trusted adult. We then did a class circle time to check it was really clear who trusted adults are in school and what are our own worries feel like. We were very proud of the children's assembly listening and them being able to take on this important issue. We will continue to promote ourselves as a trusted adult (of course) and encourage our children to pass on their worries and they can get on with the real school objective of learning and playing.
Today we say farewell to the fab Mrs Connolly who is leaving us to have her baby shortly. We wish her all the best and know that parents and children will miss her just as much as we will. We can’t wait to excellent meet her new addition soon!
Have a look in the topic overview section to see the latest one for our last term: Wonderful Water. There are lots and lots of events coming up so please check the updated dates for your diary or dates on the topic overview to make sure you know what’s coming up.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Friday 24th May
Well that half term was amazingly fun, very insect-y, a bit dusty and dirty and very writing-driven! Thank you for continuing to support us in every way.
So the butterflies have flown the nest. We have some photos but not much internet so bear with. We have loved seeing the Very Hungry Caterpillar story being played out in real life (although not the bit about eating a slice of salami, cherry pie etc!) and if your child asks to go looking for caterpillar eggs on leaves - sorry about that!
Maybe you could distract them with looking for 'double trouble' as we have been getting to grips with concept of 2 identical parts = 1 whole = a double. Now we need to learn some of those number facts off by heart to be able to use them to solve problems and generally train our maths brain. You can help by playing with 2 dice - firstly can they subitize the numbers and spot when they've thrown a double, and secondly can they add up the Whole without using their fingers? If they are not ready for that, we are teaching them to hold a bigger amount (not "number" because in years to come a fraction and a decimal will come into the mix) in their head and then count on. You're welcome
The first 2 weeks after Easter were about re-training the children in our routines and expectations whereas these last 2 weeks we have all noticed a growing maturity and definite longer concentration spans in everyone. The teachers will be spending a large proportion on this week's break writing reports and we love considering the huge changes in each individual over the course of this wonderful reception year already. I suppose we should begin the process of transition and start mentioning the YO words (year one). But we have a very long summer 2 term so we can just hold them tight for a little while longer. Details about our very thorough transition process will be described in the class page Q & A folder in coming weeks.
Enjoy your break with your lovelies. See you a week on Tuesday.
Superworm is super long, Superworm is super strong! We have focussed on recognising the rhyming words in the story and writing our own sentences about Superworm. We are working really hard on our writing: capital letter, subject, verb, finish the idea, full stop. The increasing independence with which the children are writing is fantastic. We practise our sentence writing daily and the children are making steady progress towards our final early learning goal of writing a sentence which can be read by themselves and others using phonetically plausible spellings. Basically this means that they might write: Supawurm is supa tuff- phonetically plausible. Next week we are looking forward to our final minibeast book of the term ‘What the ladybird heard.’ Another great story from Julia Donaldson.
Caterpillar update: They’re are officially in their cocoons and are now resting in their butterfly nets ready for hatching! The children can’t wait for the butterflies to hatch and release them into our secret garden. We had 2 in Rainbow Sun this afternoon manage to spread their wings. Whoop!
Sharing is always a key theme in our development in Reception: both with our friends and in our mathematical work! So this week in maths we have been learning about sharing equally and how we have to check (as all good mathematicians do!) with careful counting to make sure there are the same two amounts in each group. Next week we will be looking into double trouble and learning about doubling numbers. First they need to understand the concept- doubling = the 2 parts are the same and the whole is the total. Then we need to learn some basic doubles off by heart – double 1 is 2, double 2 is 4 etc.
What beautiful weather we have had this week! It has been so lovely to see the sunshine again and the children are loving being outside. This means that we get hot and take our jumpers and cardigans off and can’t remember where we have left them! If you are missing a jumper/cardigan please check lost property, if it is named it will usually find its way back to you! The weather forecast predicts it won’t be as lovely next week (let’s hope they’re saving that for half term!) So a coat or light rain jacket might be required. We will be putting out our own lost property without names next week so feel free to take what you want- otherwise it’s going in the charity bin!
Has the Pox reached your house yet? It seems to be spreading quickly so be warned!
Have a wonderful weekend!
60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour, 7 days in a week, 12 months in a year and a whole year between our birthdays. Time! We have been focusing our maths work this week on the language and understanding of time. How we measure time: sleeps, days, bedtime, lunchtime, home time. The children were very good at knowing when their bedtime was! We thought about counting down the sleeps until birthdays, Christmas and other special occasions. We know that there are 7 days in a week and we go to school for 5 of those days and get 2 days off a week. Using timers of varying lengths was also great fun as we saw what tasks we could complete in different times.
That bad tempered ladybird flew into the base this week! She was hungry and angry. We could all relate to thathangryfeeling! We are really enjoying our second book by Eric Carle. It is helping us think about how we manage our emotions and feelings and has led to excellent discussions about what the ladybird could have done when she was feeling like that. It has also supported our work on time and talking about ‘o’clock’ as the ladybird meets different animals at different times as she flies around in her bad mood! Our bug of the week next week will be wriggly worms as we embark upon Superworm by Julia Donaldson – he’s is super strong and super long!
Caterpillar update: They are enormous now! The caterpillars have steadily been eating their way through all the food and have grown a staggering amount. We have about 5 who are hanging and wriggling to create the cocoon so we have to be super careful how we move the pots otherwise their chrysalis’ won’t be able to support them. We’ll keep you posted!
Sponsored bounce is coming up on Wednesday 22ndMay – weather permitting! This is a fantastic event that the children love! Bouncy castles at school – you know it’s going to be a good day! Any money raised is greatly appreciated and should be sent in on the day with the form. This year raised funds have allowed us to clear the overgrown elements of our Secret Garden – twice! Thank you so much for your support with this. If you would prefer your child not take part please let us know before the day.
Have a wonderful weekend!
We have special visitors in the base this term. On Monday we introduced the Rainbows to our very own hungry caterpillars. They will be staying with us while they eat lots of food, fatten up and turn into chrysalises. We will watch with excitement as we wait for them to hatch out of their cocoons to become butterflies. We will then release the butterflies into our secret garden. This has timed perfectly with our work on Eric Carle’s ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’. The lifecycle of a butterfly, story maps and sentences with a subject and verb have been our focus this week in literacy. It is lovely to use a high quality text the children are familiar with and they have really enjoyed learning all about caterpillars and butterflies. Next week the bug of theme will be ladybirds. And he is very bad-tempered!
Thank you so much for your support with our final parent craft. It was excellent to see so many of you there and the fantastic sock bug creations are hanging proudly in our ugly bug hall!
Today saw us have our whole class photo taken, no easy feat trying to get thirty 4/5 year olds to smile and look in the right direction all at the same time and with their eyes open. Phew! Let’s hope the adults were! But we got there in the end and know that you will love the finished article.
Hearing was checked this week. They should have had a letter explaining everything. The nurse also explained that the results of the measurements taken for heights and weights are only given in written form if Nurse Fiona feels it is necessary to discuss the individual child’s results. You would have received a letter by now if this was the case. If you would like to know your child’s results you can call the nurse and she will look them up for you.
Keep going with the word bags and reading at home. It is a great support to your child and increasing their fluency when reading is key to their reading development. We will also be doing a push on writing in the Reading Records later in the term mainly for us to know that you are accessing the information on them.
Have a wonderful bank holiday weekend. Wonder how many of you will be shown a bug or two? Look forward to the picture on Tapestry!
See you Tuesday 7thMay.
Welcome back! We hope you had a lovely Easter break. The children have come back full of life (and chocolate!) ready to launch themselves into our new Minibeast topic.
The RSPB came to visit us on Tuesday to help us flutter our way into Minibeasts. The children had a fantastic time exploring the school grounds and looking for lots of different creepy crawlies. The children learnt about the different aspects of an insect and what habitats they live in. Photos coming soon! This brilliant introduction has inspired our writing this week! We have been very grown up and learnt all about subjects and verbs this week. The children are working really hard to understand this and have come up with some fantastic sentences. Capital letter, subject, verb, finish the idea, full stop is our mantra and we’ve learnt the actions to help us remember. Get your child to show you. (Check out Useful Links & Resources folder for explanations of what a subject and a verb are)
Thank you so much for those of you who have returned your IT questionnaires, can we please have any outstanding forms back ASAP.
Our final parent craft will be next Monday 29that 2.30pm. Please come prepared to share this special time with your child creating their own minibeast sock puppet which will be displayed in the corridor. You will need a sock and all materials to decorate it. We will provide glue and scissors. We look forward to seeing you then.
Have a fab weekend!
Friday 5th April
We made it! We’ve had an excellent week learning about the Easter story and spending time with our buddies making Easter craft. The children have loved sharing their own family traditions with each other and also learning what different people believe and how they celebrate. Chocolate featured heavily in this discussion!
Next term we can’t wait to start minibeasts as our penultimate topic. The children will absolutely love all the creepy crawlies that we find on our magical starter with the RSPB first week back! Have a look at the topic overview section to see important dates coming up.
Sports day will be on Monday 24th June exciting! Just in case you wanted to book the time off work it will be in the afternoon 1.30 – 3 ish! The children will be working hard this term learning and developing all of the skills we’re going to be showing you. It is a lovely afternoon and the children will wear a t shirt of their house colour to represent their team. So we will be needing trainers in our PE kits now as we’re hoping to practise outside as the weather warms up. PE days will stay the same on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Due to ensuring the security of afterschool club we ask that as soon as you have collected your child that you make a timely exit out of the gate so we can lock the gate as quickly as possible. To support us we also ask that the children (rainbows and siblings) are not allowed to play on any of the equipment or in the secret garden after school. Thank you so much for your understanding with this issue.
We hope you have a wonderful Easter and will see you all back 8.30am Tuesday 23rd April.
Friday 29th March
‘Room on the broom’ is our text this week. The children know the story really well and love joining in telling their favourite parts. We have been bowled over with their writing this week. They are working so hard to produce sentences independently and we are so proud of them. To think we are only in spring term and they are writing sentences. Wow! We look forward to continuing with developing our sentence writing next term where we will be covering minibeasts. This is such a fantastic topic that both children and staff love. We can’t wait for our magical starter on Tuesday 23rd April. We will be welcoming the RSPB from the Kingfisher barn who will be leading us on a minibeast hunt around the school grounds! Please find our new topic overview on our class page.
Next week we will be looking at the Easter story. Teachers will be checking to see if your child can recognise all the sounds taught so far as well as considering their next steps in maths. Mrs H did a phonics job with every child in the year group this week to assess their independent blending skills. There will be a Tip List in the Useful Info folder on our class page for how you can help over the Easter to play some games to get their blending skills up to scratch! That and just keep reading is all the home learning we would love you to do over the holiday.
Sports day will be upon us before we know it so we would ask that you now provide trainers as part of their PE kit for after half term. This will allow us to hopefully get outside for some of our PE sessions and get practising, ready to show you all our skills in June! The children are also welcome to wear navy jogging bottoms and/or navy jumper for outdoor PE too.
Mufti day has been a rousing success as always. Thank you so much for your kindness in supporting us with these wonderful donations. Let’s hope some of you get a Full House!
Due to ensuring the security of afterschool club we ask that as soon as you have collected your child that you make a timely exit out of the gate so we can lock the gate as quickly as possible. To support us we also ask that the children (rainbows and siblings) are not allowed to play on any of the equipment or in the secret garden after school. Thank you for your understanding with this issue.
We very sadly say goodbye to Miss Bennett today. She has been absolutely fantastic and we wish her well on the next step of her teaching journey. We are very pleased that she will be back to support us with our trip in the summer term and an art project too!
We hope you have a lovely weekend and a wonderful mothers’ day.
P.S. No Easter art project – unless you want to!
Once upon a time there were some children known as ‘The Rainbows’. They were a group of super 4 and 5 year olds who went to school everyday, tried their best and loved to learn. They especially liked playtime and lunchtime and lived happily ever after. The end.And so is the story of our reception children. It was so wonderful to welcome you into the base this week for parent craft and see you enjoying sharing stories with your children, creating a map to record the key points and then beginning to write it. Just Wow! Beginning to write sentences and stories at age 4 and 5! Thank you so much for your support with this we hope you enjoyed the session as much as we did.
Always a busy week for us. The children are working hard on their story mapping skills as hopefully you will have seen and are really enjoying the fictional reading and writing that we are doing. We’ve relished using some favourite texts such as ‘Room on the Broom’, ‘Zog’, ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’ and ‘George and the Dragon’. It has been fantastic to see some children practising their story mapping at home and bringing them in to show us, we are very impressed! Next week: Room on the Broom.
Maths has been focusing on measuring and weighing and using everyday language to describe these entities. The children have looked at the size of objects and understanding just because it is the biggest it doesn’t mean it is the heaviest (reminds us of Christmas time and presents being in massive boxes being the best!). We have thought about different ways we can measure things such as using string, cubes or our feet and hands. The children have really enjoyed the practical aspects of getting to grips with these areas of maths. This tied in nicely with a visit from the school nurse who came to check our measurements too!
Word bags definitely seem to be a big hit! The children are working really hard and are so proud of their achievements when they know their words and get new ones. We will start to see a difference in their reading fluency and confidence with every set of 10 words learnt. Thank you for your support with this, it really is making such a difference to your child’s reading. Keep sending them in each day please.
Rainbow Moon will sadly say goodbye to Miss Bennett next Friday as she will have completed her placement. It has been fantastic to have her with us this term and we wish her lots of luck as she embarks on her teaching career. We’re hoping she’ll be popping back in occasionally to lend a hand with a trip or two!
Have a lovely, spring weekend.
Friday 15th March
Nice to see you, to see you nice! Thanks for appreciating the work we teachers (and TAs) put in to your child each and every day. It was lovely to hear. We hope you also appreciated the positivity we could indulge in about your lovely Rainbow. The targets were given to allow you to see where your child is from reaching the Early Learning Goals. One of the things we felt so reassured by was all the parents talking about how they do Doodle Maths, reading and word bags most days - thank you. It makes a difference. Now to write in the Reading Records!! It is full steam ahead now!
Castles and caves were made this week alongside the dangling dragons which we hope you got to admire whilst waiting for your appointment. The listening and cutting skills involved in those creations were quite precise and we love our Dragons' Den!
We don't love lunchtime wet play so much and it's felt we've had far too many this week! The children can choose between watching a dvd, going into the construction area or drawing/colouring. It's nice to see all 90 mix so successfully together; not so nice trying to get them (all) to take responsibility to tidy up and then get them in the mindset to do handwriting/phonics etc! Still, they love the change.
We have had an assembly this week about how we must listen to and do what an adult in school tells us to do as too few children are being safe or showing respect to our dinner ladies or adults around school in general. We talked about their rights as school children but also about their responsibilities. Who said teaching was only about reading, writing, maths, science, history...?!
We look forward to welcoming you in the classrooms on Wednesday to make a story map with your rainbow. Bring a favourite story book, pens (if you don't want our limited pencils) and your most artistic skills - we will be helping you create a labelled diagram to aid story telling. Next step? Write the story! Wow! Rainbows as story writers? Who'd have that this time last year?!
Have a lovely weekend. Thank you for your support as always.
Friday 8th March
Thank you for the effort you made with your child's costume today. They had a great day and it was incredible how much language and play-based learning came from a sparkly dress, some padded muscles and other such wonderful dressing up clothes! At 9am they had a guest reader who came and read a book or two to them while Mrs H, Mrs Flynn and Mrs Connolly were guest speakers in Y5, Y2, and Y3. It worked beautifully. We also had a World Book Day assembly. I wonder if they can tell you anything they remember from it - apart from the astounding costumes? We hope you found the book (per family) that we have given you and the voucher for this year's book. If you don't want to get a £1 book, you can use the voucher for a book of your choice and get £1 discount. What does Cat in the Hat say? "The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." Can't argue with that!
Other things on the agenda this week have been - more cave building with 3D shapes inside, more bear hunts and more action against gender stereotyping (why can't girls be doctors?!). We are starting to get the hang of story maps to help tell/remember a story so that when we come to write one (soon!), we have a good strategy as a starting point. This is why we encourage reading and re-reading stories - knowing them really well gives them a confidence in story structures, characterisations, problems and solutions and beginning, middle and ends.
We are using our wellies a lot still. Got into a bit of trouble this week when we set out on a welly walk and left behind a very muddy trail on the carpet which we then stamped on to really rub it in. Now we know we must wash off any mud before we put them on the trolley to dry. We could follow this up with discussions about general shoe hygiene and maybe litter picking??? Who knows!
We look forward to seeing you for your 10min chat this week. We will have to set up another appointment next week if you need longer than 10mins. Children are not to be in the meeting but can play outside the classroom. Their books will also be there for you to look through. See you then.
Friday 1st March
Welcome back! It has been wonderful to see the children bouncing back into school this week with beaming smiles on their faces! They have been very enthusiastic about our new ‘Castles and Caves’ topic and loved our version on ‘The three little Royals and the big bad dragon’. They have really got stuck into story mapping this week and have impressed us with their drawing skills and ability to tell the story using their maps. You’ll learn more about this at our parent craft on 20th March 2.30pm.
Jude the cube, Belinda the cylinder and ice, ice, baby cone are just some of the 3d shapes the children have been introduced to this week. They have really loved getting to know the different 3d shapes and how to describe them. We’ve had some very creative activities to support them with their shape journeys this week such as paint printing, junk modelling, shape hunts in the environment and using shapes to build a castle. They are doing really well with retaining the shape names, identifying them and knowing the difference between a 2d and a 3d shape. Ask them at home!
We loved seeing all the exciting things that you did at half term on Tapestry, please keep adding all the learning you do at home!
Word bags: love them! The children were so excited to take their word bags home and we’re hoping it’s a nice quick job that you’re able to fit into your daily routine to support your child with their fluency when reading. The bags will be checked regularly (at least once a week although we will aim for more) and words that the children are confident and know really quickly without any hesitation will be changed for new ones! This means that when they are now reading their books they will have words they just know and don’t need to segment or blend thus increasing their speed and fluency. Please make sure the word bag is in their book bag every day. Any questions come and see us.
The last two days have seen the culmination of our interview process for selecting our new Head teacher for September. The children have shown our visitors what a fantastic school we have and we look forward to sharing who the successful candidate was soon.
PE kits – please ensure they’re back with us by Monday next week. Just shorts and t shirts no trainers needed.
Snack – please only fruit or veg and water only in water bottles.
World book day Friday 8th March – come dressed as your favourite book character.
Please make sure you’ve booked your parent conference times as there’s only limited slots available now.
Check the dates for your diaries section for all upcoming dates.
You will have received an email about vision screening for your child at school. If you would like to opt out of this please print the form off and bring to the office.
Have an excellent weekend.
So this is it, we’re officially half way through the school year! Only a term and a half before the summer holidays and lots to fit in!
Dinosaurs has been an epic topic. The children have loved it and their knowledge of dinosaurs has astounded us. We have quite a few future palaeontologists on our hands. Next term we are looking forward to exploring a brand new topic: Castles and Caves. This is going to be an excellent time for us to focus on our story mapping, actions for stories and actually writing our very own stories! This kind of thing: Once upon a time there was a Prince. Then a dragon trapped him and the Princess rescued him. They lived happily ever after. The end. We can’t wait to get stuck in to castle and cave building! Please save all kitchen roll inserts for us! Have a look at the topic overview on the class page for all we’ll be doing in this topic.
Parent conference letters came home this week. We’re really looking forward to catching up with you in March. Please log in on 25thFebruary and book your appointment. Remember you can always catch us at the end of the day if you need to discuss something.
Multiskills for this half term has now finished and the children have loved it. It will start again for a new group of children after half term. If this is something you’d like your child to do look out for the letters coming out after half term. PE kits have been sent home for a wash and to be returned Tuesday 26thFebruary ready for our new goal of mastering rolling in our sessions. No trainers required as we will still be indoors for this half term so just shorts and t shirt.
Now is a good time to check everything is still labelled: cardigans, jumpers, skirts, trousers, shorts, PE t shirts, water bottles, snack pots, book bags etc. If your child has outgrown any trousers, dresses or skirts our spares tubs would really appreciate them!
You will also have received a letter about our new word bags! These are an excellent and very exciting way to learn those key words to help the fluency of your child’s reading. We look forward to giving those out after half term!
Have a wonderful half term and we’ll see you back Tuesday 26thFebruary 8.30am.
Friday 8th February
So the snow has been washed away by the rain L Despite the wet weather we are trying to make it outside as often as we can in wellies and coats and ensuring we’re getting that much needed fresh air and time to use up some energy!
I have a whole orange. Now I’ve peeled it, do I still have a whole orange? No! I have parts. We have been thinking about part part whole this week. How we use different numbers to make up parts of another number. E.g. 1+1+3+5 =10 so 10 was my whole and it is made up of 4 parts (1, 1, 3 and 5). This is something we will be continuing to develop, making the children aware of while and parts and how they are related.
Keep going with Doodlemaths! It has been fantastic to see so many children really relish this mathematical challenge daily! Rainbow Moon have been raining champions for 4 weeks in a row, can one of the other Reception classes knock them off the top spot this week?! We actively encourage your child to do their short daily challenge, gaining their stars and keeping their streak going to grow their brain in short bursts and support their development of maths. The ceremony in assembly when some children collect certificates recognising their dedication to their doodlemaths shows their pride in their dedication to Doodle Maths. If you haven’t been able to access it yet please let us know ASAP. Keep doodling!
The children are coping well with learning the different digraph sounds. But these sounds can be quite tricky for them to retain. So far we have learnt: th, ch, sh, ng, ai, oo, ll, ff, ss, zz, ar, oa and qu. It would be really helpful to draw attention to these when reading with your child at home ensuring that they see it as one sound and do not segment it as two sounds. E.g ( sh o p = shop not s. h. o. p = s hop!) This will support them to read words accurately and fluently.
Friday 15th 3.15pm finish for half term
Tuesday 26th February 8.30am Back to school
Tuesday 12th Feb: show and tell – your favourite book to share (getting ready for World Book Day in March)
Have a lovely weekend.
Bbbrrrrr! So we’ve a little bit of snow. Very exciting! The change in the weather has provided us with an excellent opportunity to talk about our changing weather and seasons with the children. They are becoming quite the meteorologists and are extending their vocabulary excellently! Please ensure they are wrapped up warm for school and all hats, gloves, scarves, ear muffs etc are named!
We’ve made it to February! The children have settled back in so well after Christmas and are thriving on our dinosaur topic. Their independence at taking their reading record out, being responsible for themselves and their property and following the Muscliff way are coming along nicely. We are thinking about always being in the right place and doing the right thing at the right time a lot in the Rainbows at the moment. Helping the children develop that sense of doing the right thing because it is the right thing to do and what the right choice is in a variety of situations so they motivate themselves and are not always expecting a reward for doing what they should be doing. Particularly hard on a Friday snowy afternoon!
We are working really hard on our sentence writing and remembering everything a sentence needs to be correct. It needs: a capital letter at the start and for any names, fingers spaces between the words so we can read them accurately, a full stop at the end to show the sentence is finished and it needs to have all of the words to make sense. Phew! That is a lot to think about when you’re 4 and 5! We will be doing lots of practise of this skill as we work towards meeting the early learning goal for writing at the end of the school year. Sometimes we use our fingers to count how many words need to be in the sentence; sometimes we used cubes, marbles or counters. We are invoking the use of our growth mindset particularly as it is ok to make mistakes; we’re going to make lots of them as we learn to write. That’s ok because we’re going to learn from them and it’s going to make us better writers!
We have thoroughly enjoyed our sessions with our expert gymnastics coach and are really looking forward to the last two. After half term PE will go back to a Tuesday and a Wednesday. Please ensure that your child PE kit is in school on these days so that they can get the most out of their sessions.
Have a lovely weekend. We’re off to match the left-over gloves and make a mountain of scarves!
Mrs H, Mrs Flynn, Mrs Lumsden, Mrs Connolly
Roooooaaaaaarrr! Said the dinosaurs! So we’ve found a new song for our topic which the children (and us!) are loving. We are also enjoying sharing fiction and non-fiction books about our topic and learning some very interesting facts. Our vocabulary is extending: we are using words like extinct, herbivore, omnivore and carnivore. The rainbows are really thriving on this topic and it is spilling into their excellent writing development. We are learning to copy sentences from the teacher’s model , focusing on cursive letter formation, writing on the line and finger spaces. We’re seeing some great progress from the start of the year and look forward to you seeing it at book look Tuesday 29th3.30-4pm for a quick browse of the pages we’ve done so far.
Eric 8 has been teaching us how to accurately form the number 8 and helping us understand the ‘eightness’ of 8. We think about different ways of making 8: fingers, cubes, numicon, counters, unifix and any other way the children independently choose to do this. We are continuing to develop our number story skills such as ‘I had 4 apples, and then I had 4 more. How many do I have now?’ This method helps the children to visualise and use language to help them solve addition problems. At home, you could try the same- can they make up a number story? Can they use a maths question and solve it? (How many altogether/left?)
Reading at home with your child regularly really helps to cement the skills they are learning at school, thank you so much for your support with this it really makes a difference to their progress. We are getting really good at segmenting and knowing our sounds off by heart. We’re also really good at blending when someone else segments it for us. Our next step is to be able to blend independently when your child has segmented the word themselves. We are really focussing on blending our sounds back together to help us read independently. One tip is to ‘not breathe’ between the sounds eg r-u-g =rrrruuuugggg=rug. We’ve noticed that some of the reading records are getting bumper size! Now is probably a good time to have a sort through and remove any old sounds/records to a separate folder.
Also a big thank you to the Mums who have volunteered to be Reading Rangers. You will be very valued! There is no time limit on this so get in touch with Mrs Harrison if you have any 9-9.30 availability at any point during the rest of the year.
We’re doing really well in good news assembly. The children are showing us they are ready, respectful and safe when walking down the corridor in the Muscliff way and are joining in well with the rest of the school. It has been delightful to see how proud they are to stand up in assembly to receive doodlemaths certificates or superstar of the week. Well done Rainbows.
Have a lovely weekend.
Thursday 17th January
Second week back completed and the children have been brilliant. Our corridor is looking wonderful with all the brightly coloured dinosaur eggs hanging and ready to hatch. Thank you for all your creative skills!
Sentence writing has been our focus in literacy this week. The children have really impressed us with their enthusiasm to write more than their name and their ability to take on a new concept. We have been thinking about full stops, capital letters, finger spaces and cursive letter formation. Phew! That’s quite a lot to think about when you’re only 4 or 5 years old. Well done Rainbows! We are sure you will be as impressed as we are when you pop in to see their books at book look on January 29th 3.30-4pm.
We are pleased to welcome Miss Bennett to the Rainbows’ Team. She is training to be a teacher and has slotted brilliantly into Rainbow Moon. A welcome addition to the team!
We have really enjoyed the flurry of recent tapestry observations added from at home, please keep them coming!
So, maths...Sir 7 and all things ‘7’ has been the basis of our maths learning this week. The children are developing their ability to create number stories thinking about 1 more or 1 less. It has been fantastic to join the whole school in their Doodle Maths journey and be recognised for how consistent the rainbows children are with keeping up their streaks. Some of the rainbows have over 60 day streaks now, this is wonderful! Thank you so much for your support with this and keep going! Rainbow Moon were awarded the Doodle trophy this week for most children completing their Doodle maths for that week. We wonder which class it will be this week?
How about you becoming a bit of a star and joining the Reading Ranger team? We have 2 responses so far and would love loads more! It really is a nice thing to do if you have that spare 20-30mins at 9am once a week or more!
We are big school children now, which means we will be joining the school for our first good news assembly! The Rainbows will be wonderful. We expect them to rise to the challenge of assembly behaviour in the hall rather than just in Mrs H’s room and with Y1 and Y2. Superstars! We look forward to our weekly assembly sessions with KS1.
Lunch menus back ASAP
Any outstanding school nurse forms back ASAP
Reading Ranger meeting Tuesday 22nd 2.45 with Mrs H. Meet in the office.
January 29th 3.30-4pm Book look – pop in for a quick look through their books
15th February 3.15pm Finish half term
Have an excellent weekend.
Sunday 13th January
A lot of you have checked the blog over the last 7 days so I thought I'd do an extra one!
Things of note:
Well I've got loads of work to do so better stop this chatting!
See you tomorrow.
Tuesday 8th January 2019
Here we are again! We have all had a lovely break and hope you have too but we have missed the children!
It was great to see so many coming in with big smiles and healthy bodies this morning - let's hope that continues! We have had a chance to talk about our holiday and then get down to the business of learning. This term is all about dinosaurs. As you have probably already read from the topic overview on the letters page, we will be counting dinosaurs, writing and reading about dinosaurs, comparing dinosaurs, playing with dinosaurs...
Our main focus this term though is Growth Mindset. We are getting better at following the school rules and understanding how to be Ready, Respectful and Safe and so it is time to work on learning to learn. We will be using 'yet' a lot as we face challenges (I can't read that word yet.) We will be talking about how it takes a lot of hard work to learn big things like reading and writing and how it took most of us a year to learn how to walk, 2 years to talk and how long to get dressed, feed ourselves with a knife and fork, do our zips up independently etc etc. We cannot expect learning to be easy. Muscliff Mouse will probably feature quite a lot we're sure!
Looking forward to seeing you on Thursday 2.30 with your balloon and newspaper (check content please!) to make dinosaur eggs.
p.s. There are 55 parents on the Muscliff App. We try to send out reminders about stuff on that so please download it if you haven't. Ask if you need any help.
First term –done! Haven’t they done absolutely wonderfully?! They have marked a major milestone in their lives and started on their new journey of school. It is a privilege for us as teachers to be so instrumental in this journey with them. You have ‘given’ us your child and we thank you but you are still the main educators and we appreciate your essential support which makes the impact of learning all the important skills so much more achievable.
This week we have enjoyed learning about the traditional Christmas story and what some people believe at this time of year. We have had lots of ‘I was a king/shepherd/innkeeper’ etc as we have explored the nativity story some more but did you know that no one could tell us why we chose to celebrate Christmas!
It has been an incredibly long half term – 8 weeks! The children have managed so very well and are very deserving of an overdue rest and relaxation time at home. Space has been such a fantastic topic. The children have really impressed us with how many facts they have retained and how knowledgeable they are about the solar system now. We will be sad to say goodbye to space but we are very much looking forward to crash landing on a meteorite into our next topic of dinosaurs! We expect this to be another topic the children find fascinating and really get stuck into! You can find the topic overview on our webpage. Now to find another song as slightly hypnotic as the solar system one!
Thank you so much for your generous gifts and lovely words in our cards. It means so much. My teachers and teaching assistants are incredible. They put in far many more hours than is expected on their contract and really give themselves to your children’s learning. Thank you for noticing. Now it is time they all re-connect with their families and friends and get ready for the next wonderful term. (Thank you team- you know I appreciate you greatly!)
From all of us: Have the most magical time with your little one. Make memories to cherish!
Happy new year and we’ll see you Tuesday 8thJanuary 2019: 8.30am.
We’ve made it! Only 3.5 days to go! We have got some very tired Rainbows (children and teachers!) but they have made it through our last full week at school, well done everyone. Thank you so much to our fantastic parents who are working with them at home to keep them going with early nights and sticking to routine. It makes such a difference for us teachers and by the same token, we are also keeping to our normal routine – just with a few extra sparkly bits here and there!
PE kits will come home next week ready to be washed and returned after half term. We’re very excited to welcome Gemma Gym to our team for next half term. She will be doing lots of gymnastics with the children (we can’t wait!) and our PE day will be swapping to a MONDAY. It will stay this way for the whole half term. Please ensure kits are back with us for our first session Monday 14thJanuary.
Thank you to everyone who has returned the health questionnaire. We look forward to seeing the school nurse in the New Year for all of our developmental checks. Please ensure your forms are with us ASAP.
Seal 6 has been the number we are learning this week. The children have worked on number formation, finding sets of 6 and adding more the make 6. Baa Baa Rainbow sheep has been the rhyme we adapted to help us consolidate our 6 number knowledge and learn the different colours in the song. Once you’re a Rainbow it’s all about everything Rainbow!
It has been a real pleasure to receive and see the Xmas cards the children are writing (with a little bit of help!) It is a fantastic way to encourage writing their name and letter formation. Well done Rainbows!
Reminders this week:
· Thursday 20thDecember- Christmas party and mufti day for all.
· Thursday 20thDecember – 1.30pm Finish for Xmas Holidays
· Thursday 10thJanuary-dinosaur egg parent craft 2.30
· It’s getting cold! Hats, gloves and coats!
Have a wonderful weekend (10 sleeps to go!)
Lights, camera, action! Well it most certainly was ‘the greatest show’ this week. We could not be prouder of our Rainbows and the fantastic performance they put on this week. They really were little show stoppers and we hope you enjoyed every aspect of their show. Thank you so much for coming and supporting them; it means the world to them to see you all there.
The Rainbows have had a busy week and have had to be brave! Flu vaccinations were a success with some very brave little people going it alone for their first medical ‘thing’ without their parents. As always they showed how independent they have become and took it in their stride! Well done Rainbows (and mummies and daddies!)
Fiona five has been our number focus this week, thinking about friends to five (2+3, 4+1 etc) and different ways to make five. The children are really enthusiastic about learning each new number and ten town character that explains it. The rhymes are helping them to remember how to form their numbers accurately and recognise each number successfully. The children have also been doing lots of little maths jobs with their teacher this week to see what numbers we can recognise and how we count accurately. Super mathematicians!
Christmas has descended on the base and we have loved the variety of the snowflakes we have received this week to decorate the classroom. Thank you so much for all your creative genius, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Book advent has begun in the Rainbows: 14 books were wrapped and left ready for us to open one each day for the remaining school days. The star of the day is having the privilege of choosing a present to open and have read as our story for the end of the day. The children are really enjoying this surprise story for the day (as are we!). Check out Book of the Month on our class page for December and if you need any stocking filler ideas, your teacher will be happy and able to suggest plenty of fab books (and get them while there are 3 for 2/ Buy one, get one half price offers around).
It was fantastic to see so many of you supporting the school at the Xmas fayre on Saturday. It looks to have been another rousing success so thank you for your attendance and helping the MPA raise much needed funds for our school. If you think you could find up to an hour every half term or so to be part of the MPA, your contribution will be very welcomed and appreciated. You wouldn’t believe how few people there are dedicating their spare time to the MPA=Muscliff children. As teachers, we rely on their fund-raising. So far this academic year, Rainbows have benefitted from the MPA funds via: some new books in the reading corners, the Space Dome, DoodleMaths and 10 new learning activities.
So two weeks to go and we will have completed our first term! How time flies. It is a long term and we will keep the tired/over-excited/over-excitable/grouchy (*delete as appropriate!) children going the best we can! It is such an exciting time of year with so much to see and do. You can help support the children by keeping them in their routine as much as possible and lots of early nights! Nearly there!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Wednesday 28th Nov
Rain, rain go away, come again another day... We should be so grateful for our temperate climate (well ok so there is another yellow weather warning today but apart from them...) but boy, us Rainbows are not big fans of wet plays, particularly at lunchtime. Teachers are not used to having much of a lunchtime so it is not the disruption to our 3-course lunch specials but rather dealing with the unused energy of our 30 little tigers that follows. Thank you for making sure they have waterproof coats and wellies in school - we will be going out for a welly walk at some point today! We will also be exploiting the vocab around weather - it's pouring down/it's raining cats and dogs/it's a strong wind but not a gale.
Dress rehearsal 1 is also in the diary. Rainbow Star will be entertaining year 2 and 3 this morning- assuming we can all 'squeeze a wee' and get into our costumes predominately by ourselves. It is a vital part of our nativity practices that they have a go in front of an audience before the real thing so they get the chance to 'freeze'. Later on we will have a chat about how it went, how we felt and how we can make it even better for the 'real' performance. Rainbow Moon and Rainbow Sun's dress rehearsals are tomorrow. We also hope to be able to watch a Y1 class' dress rehearsal as well. It's amazing how much they mature in 12 months and they will be good role models for our fab Rainbows.
It maked us laugh the other day when we learnid of our grammar typo on one of the lines sended home for 'Shepherd 3'. One of our focuses next half term is using the past tense correctly in speech. Better bring that forward a few weeks!
So don't be fooled into thinking nativity is all we are up to these days. We do spend about 30 mins practising/singing but the rest of the day is our usual timetable- reading, maths, phonics, story, literacy, PSHE, art, topic etc etc. We have to squeeze out PE for 2 weeks before the hall/studio spaces are being used for nativity but we make up for that in our outside times (Rain, rain, go away...) when we promote playground games, ball skills etc.
As you will know from the Reading Record, our sounds are x, y, z (not in that order) this week. We will then have finished all the single sounds. q is taught as a digraph (2 letters, 1 sound)= qu. We will be checking all the children's recognition of the alphabet over the next couple of weeks so keep doing the homework sheets and reading please; it makes such a difference.
The 'fourness' of Freddie TenTown 4 is going well. We continue to consider how many different parts 4 can make (2 2, 1 1 1 1, 1 1 2) and relate that to coins, objects and shapes.
Any questions about nativities, please let us know so we can add them to the nativity folder. All aboard to Bethlehem!
Thursday 22nd November
So how is November going for you? All is good in school. Nativity practices have started so we know our sitting positions, we are learning our words and finding out that voices need to be LOUD when we are acting but beautifully soft when singing. Have you looked on the Nativity folder yet on our class page? All the information you need should be on there. We've been impressed with the dedication to learn words as the more confident they are at home/in the practices, the hope is the more likely they are to perform on the day. Talking of performing, we will send out spare tickets on Monday so get your requests in if you need any. Narrators can start bringing in their smart clothes in a named bag from Monday as we have our first dress rehearsal on Wednesday (Star) and the others are on Thursday. Broadway here we come! (New York not the road!)
The children are really enjoying our space topic and we loved the space facts in show n tell; did you know that the footprints on the moon will last 100million years? No, me neither but thank you to HP for telling me that via Tapestry! Here is the link for a lovely solar system song that we have shown this week:
It is Youtube so make sure your parental controls are on.
A lot of children are finding it hard to learn our key words so we have planned a few weeks worth of work to develop this important skill. It cannot be underestimated the difficulty of having to recognise a seemingly random set of letters without sounding them out. Maybe it would be like us reading in a foreign language with a different script eg Russian, Kanji, Mandarin. Time and practice!
Doodle Maths seems to be going really well. We've had a few glitches on a few children but we're working hard with Doodle Maths engineers to solve them. Again: practise, practise, practise a little and often.
We're looking forward to next week: dress rehearsals, Christmas fayre (see class page for details about mufti) and Goldilocks and the 3 Bears. See you then.
Nativity practice has started! The children know their parts, have learnt all the songs and are on their way to learning their lines. You can help your child at home by practising the songs and getting them to project their voice when saying their lines. The words for the songs can be found on our class page. Your Rainbow can hopefully help you with the tune!
Children In Need has been a rousing success. It was so wonderful to see the children in their bright colours and enjoying their cakes! Your patience when queueing and not sneaking in through the ‘out’ door showed respect- thanks! Also thank you so much for your continued support and very generous donations, we really appreciate it. As soon as we know how much has been raised as a school we’ll let you know.
5,4,3,2,1 blast off! We are really looking forward to seeing you all on Monday for our bottle rocket parent craft session at 2.15pm. Please come prepared with everything you need to create your rocket: bottle, stickers, card, paper, sellotape, string/ribbon to hang etc. The children are very excited to have you come in and create their rocket. The rockets will stay with us to be displayed in our corridor.
Tommy 2 has been our maths focus this week. We have been thinking about pairs, couples and doubles and matching things together. The children have really explored our outdoor learning area immersing themselves in the number 2: playing hunt the pair, matching socks together to hang on our washing line, drawing the number 2 in chalk, burying and digging up 2p in the garden and creating papier mache planets! A fantastic week!
The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse has been our reading text and we have been practising verbally rehearsing sentences and counting the words in the sentence. This helps us develop our understanding of sentence structure for when we come to writing our own sentences. By knowing how many words are in the sentence it helps us ensure our sentences have everything they need and make sense when we are writing.
Tickets are on sale in the office for visits to Santa at the school fayre. Don’t forget to get yours before they sell out!
Have a great weekend.
p.s. Apologies from Tapestry for locking us all out for 24 hours the other day. They admitted it was their fault. Shame no Black Friday vouchers in the post from them!
Gee up camel! We’re very excited to say that nativity singing practice has started this week! The children have loved learning the actions and words to our first three songs, only 5 more to go! See class page next week for the lyrics- just in case your child is singing about a little donkey poking along a rusty road!
It was so lovely to see you all at parent conferences this week. It was such a good opportunity to touch base and hear how well your little Rainbow has settled into school. 10 mins of ‘you’ time to feel proud. We hope you also enjoyed looking at their first pieces of work in their books and seeing some of the lovely displays of their work in the classrooms.
Space has been explored further with the development of spacemen, spaceships, planet collages and rocket name writing! The children have really been focussing on writing their names this week. We are trying to remember all of the letters in our name, the correct order they come in and forming our letters accurately in cursive. Well done Rainbows!
King 1 and the number 1 has been our maths focus this week. We have immersed ourselves in the ‘oneness’ of one and understanding a single unit. The children are enjoying learning how to form their numbers and the rhymes that goes with it. As well as exploring everything to do with 1 and linking our stories to our number focus. This week we have been reading Elmer, a story about one very unique elephant and we have exploited the excuse to discuss their uniqueness.
The Doodlemaths launch was a great success and good to see so many of you in attendance. You will receive your child’s login details on Monday. We have created their account putting them on a zero baseline so you’re all ready to try it out. Use the 5 a day questions for little and often chunks of maths for them. Any questions let us know. Be prepared to teach them left and right as we found a few questions about that language. (Please don’t leave it up to Mrs H – ask her anything about English grammar, how to teach reading, writing and maths but left and right? Nope.)
We were very proud of the children and how well they commemorated the Remembrance 2 minute silence on Friday. We stood in a circle, holding hands without our voices, remembering the people who have given their lives during the war. The children were fantastic and showed good respect and understanding. Superstars!
Have a wonderful weekend.
5, 4, 3, 2, 1 blast off! Into space we go! What a fantastic first week back we have had with our new topic. The children have loved starting to explore space and our universe, which was especially evident in our wonderful magical starter. The dome arrived in the morning and took us on a super journey. We first looked at the moon and stars above Bournemouth from the night before and then found out where the planets were and how we moved around the sun. We learnt about the moon and Buzz. Michael and Neil. We went on a roller coaster around Saturn’s rings. (The teachers got very dizzy!) It was amazing to see all the children so focussed and absorbing this new information. We can’t wait to explore this topic further!
We hope you all had a fantastic half term and the children had a well deserved rest. We are so pleased with how well they have come back to school after their first official break and have settled straight back in and taken the new topic in their stride. Well done Rainbows (and parents!)
This term is a long one (8 weeks!) but we’ve got so much planned. It is a lovely time of year in school with so much to do, so please keep up to date with everything going on via the dates for your diary, this class page and the app.
Our lovely summer has finally come to an end! The weather has definitely taken a colder turn so please ensure your child has a coat every day in school and if you are sending in hats, scarves, gloves can we please ask that they are named as they have a habit of falling out of pockets and off hands! Generally we find children rarely keep them on after the first few minutes of play so consider taking them home at the gate (gloves/scarves not the children of course!).
Thank you to all those parents who have signed up for parent conferences. We look forward to seeing you next week. It’s a great opportunity for you to touch base with us and see how your child is settling and see their first writing and maths work. If you haven’t managed to book an appointment yet please do book one via the booking system or come and see us and we’ll see what we have left. Your child(ren) can come to the meeting as well but we ask you to leave them outside with the lego while we talk.
You will have received a doodlemaths letter inviting you to attend the meeting about its launch. If you can attend please do as this is our new maths programme we will be using with the children and we’re very excited to get going with it!
Have a sparkly and safe weekend.
Wow Rainbows! Here we are – it’s the end of the first half term!
We are so proud of the children and how much they have learned already during these first weeks of school from getting to know all our routines to learning 15 new sounds!
Talking of sounds, this week in phonics we have cracked some e-e-eggs, pretended to be puppies (rrrrr!) and taken cover from the rain under our u-u-umbrellas. We have also continued to practise blending our sounds to decode short words and then sort them into real and nonsense words. We have been practising sounding out during guided reading sessions too. The focus has been finger spaces and words this week. We have counted words on each page and worked hard to sound out and blend sounds we already know.
We have introduced the concept of part-part-whole in maths. We have used playdough and multilink cubes to discuss the number of parts, how they are the same or different and how together they make the whole. A ‘whole’ can be anything that has nothing (a part) taken away from it, so it could be a fish finger, a leaf or a tower of lego.
We have been so impressed with the children’s growing independence in getting themselves changed for PE this week. We have continued to explore different ways of moving through our soft play circuit and it has been lovely to see how much the children enjoy their PE!
Look out for our new whole school maths homework strategy ‘Doodle Maths’ coming next half term. There will be a parent briefing to introduce you to it in November. Keep an eye on Dates for your diary.
Wishing you a relaxing and refreshing half term holiday with your Rainbow. We look forward to seeing you again on Tuesday 30thOctober for the ‘blast off’ for our new topic, Space which has a fab magical starter on the Thursday to get them ‘over the moon’ about it.
The Rainbow Team J
What a week of firsts it has been! First time doing PE, first official school photo, first parent craft and for a few first birthdays at school. Phew! It has been another busy week.
The children have coped so well this week with the changes to our timetable. They were fantastic on photo day: listening, lining up and waiting patiently. We were so proud of them and hope you got some fantastic first school year shots for your memory bank or walls.
PE this week was an absolute delight. They loved exploring the equipment, using their bodies to develop different ways to move and were amazing at getting changed! Thank you so much for taking the time to develop this independent skill at home it has made it so much easier for them (and us!) that they are so able when dressing themselves. PE kits come home for washing every half term.
It was so wonderful to see so many of you at parent craft this week. The children have been looking forward to it and loved creating their very own Muscliff mouse with you. We hope you enjoyed the story of our school mascot and weren’t the children so amazing at telling you the story?! Well done Rainbows. Next performance: Nativity! (see dates for your diary)
We know lots of you have created your tapestry account via the activation email which is excellent; we hope you are enjoying seeing what your little one has been up to. If anyone hasn’t received their email please print very clearly your email address and child’s name on a piece of paper and hand to a member of staff in the base so we can get this to you quickly.
Thank you for all of your support with World Homeless day, the children loved placing their donations inside the giant YMCA letters and the school council look forward to finding out how much we raised!
After half-term there is a new whole-school maths homework format called Doodle Maths. We Rainbow teachers are still working out how this will look and how to ‘set the level’ so early in the year but we hope to have it up and running by week 2 and there will be a parent workshop run by Mrs H and Mr Jackson-Taylor to help you as well. More info next week.
Only one more week to go to half term! Have a brilliant weekend.
Well aren’t we glad that week is over! What a week it’s been!
Children and teachers alike are emotional and absolutely exhausted this week JWe are so incredibly proud of the children and how they welcomed our visitors on Tuesday and showed them just how much they’ve learnt in the short time they have been with us. Well done Rainbows!
It was a pleasure to see so many of you at the curriculum meeting this week. We hope you took away some valuable information and knowledge about what the Reception year entails. Just in case it wasn’t clear the three things we want you to focus on are:
This leads us into the reading book every child will have brought home this week. You will see that they have a book with no words in and an explanation sheet to help support with getting the most from your reading. If you are unsure of anything please don’t hesitate to come and ask us. You can record this book as your reading in your reading record. There is also a free new book for your to keep which will be coming home Friday/Monday. Keeeeeep reading!
We are looking forward to doing PE for the first time next week. Please ensure your child has their PE kit (white t shirt and navy shorts) in school for next week.
Thank you to those parents who have given back their email for tapestry we will be sending emails out for you to create your accounts very soon.
Have a wonderful weekend with your tired Rainbow.
Friday 28th September
Part time? What part time?!
We are so proud of the Rainbows for completing their first full time week in school! It has been a week full of excitement, new friendships and lots of learning.
Courage and resilience were needed this week as the children got to grips with the lunch time routine and new activities. Courage and resilience are also the characteristics of the Muscliff Mouse who we have learned all about and look forward to telling you the whole story at our parent craft session on Wednesday the 10th October!
Our parent craft is a short session to make a mouse (please bring an unwanted cd or a paper plate) with your child. We will also ‘perform’ the Muscliff Mouse story for you. Our classroom displays are starting to take shape so might spot some of your children’s work around. If you cannot come our lovely TAs will work with them.
This week we have begun our phonics sessions with the sounds ‘s’, ‘t’, ‘a’ and ‘i’. We have learned the Jolly Phonics songs with the actions (see if your child can teach you!) and practised writing both sounds in cursive writing. Thank you for encouraging and supporting your child to complete the homework we have sent home this week in the red folder. We have loved seeing the children’s brilliant efforts in writing their letters. It might take about 30 attempts at the cursive before they feel a bit confident but they will get there. Feel free to use the back of the sheet if the dotty ones are too small.
In maths we have introduced the vocabulary of big and small to describe and compare objects. The children have been sorting different items according to their size and thinking about what makes an object big or small. Is a is it the number of pages in a book or the size of the book itself? Is it the length of the pencil or the width of the pencil?
Finally, a reminder: our Curriculum Evening is on Tuesday 2ndOctober at 6pm. We look forward to seeing you there with lots of information about what we will be learning during the Reception year, how we learn at Muscliff and how you can support your child at home. We will also talk about Tapestry and how you can access your child’s learning journal online. Look out for the letter in bookbags today (Friday).
Wishing you a lovely weekend. A well-deserved two days off Rainbows!
Friday 21st September
So that was the intro to school life, now for the reality! We have loved being able to get to know all the children these last two weeks and help them get to grip with our routines and expectations. The next four weeks will be exciting, fun and tiring - be prepared! First things first, a few reminders about full time:
Have they told you what they have learnt this week? Segmenting skills are progressing nicely with most children. Segmenting is breaking down a word into its sounds eg: M-u-s-c-l-i-ff,
m-ou-se, r-ai-n-b-ow. Wherever we go now, you'll hear the grown ups saying: "Go and get your c-oa-t". "Time for s-n-a-ck." So many children are now able to blend the sounds back together to make the word. We are learning to read folks! We will provide a lot more information at our Curriculum Meeting
Talking of reading...
There will be a new reading record coming home each Monday for your information. Please add to your red file and fill in the Reading At Home section. You can just write the book title, add comments about how your child did or just squiggle your signature to confirm that daily reading is going on. We really appreciate your partnership here as it will accelerate your child's reading skill hugely if they share a book with you every day. Thank you.
Our Y5 buddies are very excited to be meeting us today! They will introduce themselves and together we will go to the MUGA (multi-use games area) and play with some of the lunchtime equipment available so we are ready, respectful and safe next week. How fab! I wonder if they will be able to tell your their buddy's name?
Have a wonderful (wet?) weekend and we'll see you 8.30 on Monday. Be kind to yourself- this coming to school lark is a big step- for you as much as them.
Friday 14th September
Well here’s to our first week as Rainbows! What a fabulous start to school your gorgeous little people have made. They have impressed us with their mature attitude towards school life and how well they have settled in and are getting to grips with all the new things they are learning. Well done them (and you!) Parents -you have made a great start to helping them settle in and come through the door happy, thank you so much. Next week let’s try and say goodbye at the gate!
You should have found your child’s red reading record in their bag today, please have a read and get to know the layout; it will explain the week’s learning to you and we look forward to seeing all the wonderful books you have shared soon.
A few upcoming dates:
We look forward to seeing you at the Curriculum Evening. We have lots of information to share with you, even those returning parents of siblings there are changes to tell you about! The evening will lay out the school ethos and what learning at Muscliff looks like. We will also be providing you with ideas and practical tips on how to help your child at home with: reading and phonics, writing and spelling & grammar and maths. It will also give us an opportunity to talk to you about Tapestry and how you will be able to access your child’s learning journal and view their observations. So don’t miss it!
Our first parent craft will be here before we know it. The children love having the opportunity to have their parent come in and be creative with them. This session we will be making our very own Muscliff mice so please be prepared and bring a paper plate or old unwanted cd with you to use. Please don’t worry if you can’t make it due to other commitments, we love seeing grandparents, aunties, uncles or friends too!
Here’s to another fabulous week next week. Don’t forget the time changes- 9-11.30 / 12.45-3
Have a wonderful weekend and cherish your time with your tired little Rainbow. (They’ll get much tireder!!)
Friday 7th September
We have thoroughly enjoyed meeting you and our new Rainbows these last 3 days. We hope they and you feel a little more confident about the classrooms and school life in general. There will always be lots of questions so feel free to ask them. Remember: let's keep problems as small as possible.
The classroom have been decorated with the stars, moons and suns that your child decorated and their names are on the book bag boxes ready for Monday. We have put out a number of activities for your child to choose from when they come in, so as soon as they are settled, we advise you to leave quickly. Then do something nice! The time will fly by.
So last minute reminders;
Feel free to pop into the classroom for the first 2 days. By the end of the week, let's aim to drop off at the classroom door. By the end of the 2nd week, let's drop off at the outside classroom door and by the end of the first full-time week, the green gate. If you want to talk to us in the morning, please leave a message with the member of staff at the gate.
Rainbow Moon: Mrs Flynn (teacher), Mrs Watson (TA), Mrs Clarke (TA)
Rainbow Star: Mrs Harrison (teacher), Mrs Doidge (TA), Mrs Tarrant (TA)
Rainbow Sun: Mrs Lumsden (teacher), Mrs Assad, Mrs Clarke (TA)
Bring on Monday:
(named!) snack pot and water bottle
(named!) book bag
(named!) PE bag and PE kit (blue shorts and white t-shirt)
We will rest up a little over the weekend and be ready for the fun and games on Monday. (We hope we sleep - we're very excited!!)
Mrs H, Mrs Flynn and Mrs Lumsden
Despite our best efforts and because of technical issues, we cannot send the email letter to you until Monday. Mrs H is working on a suitable 'incentive' for issues to be overcome as early on Monday as possible but it may have to wait until 4pm-ish. Sorry about that. However, when the email does arrive it gives you just the right amount of time to have a chat and get them ready for their 'playdate' with us later in the week. Wonder if we can get the photos to upload on here???
(Monday 3rd) Hope you have checked your email and received your letter. There are a few people whose email addresses we don't yet have. We'll sort this out with you when we see you this week.
Tuesday 28th August
We have NO pants!!
Well we have our own of course but if you have any spare boys' or girls' pants, they would be gratefully received for our 'accident' boxes so that if/when a child has a toilet accident, we can give them clean pants to get themselves changed into. We will give you a bag with the dirty ones in and then ask you to wash and return any borrowed items. Looks like people have not realised they have our pants in their child's drawer!
So the classrooms are almost back to normal after the 'deep clean' last week. The teachers have been in flexing those muscles whilst moving tables, chairs, role play equipment, storage units, hanging stuff... and now we are ready to meet to finalise details of our first few weeks planning, timetable and resources. Look out for some photos to come and if we have your email address, check that inbox at the end of the week.
Wednesday 22nd August
So getting ready for your 1:1 meeting?
We will meet you in our Rainbows' playground with a handshake and bring you into our classroom. Then we will guide you towards the cloakroom and your child's name to find. After that we just want to get to know you and your child a bit. There will be a lot we need to tell you so the Rainbow will be getting creative and chatty with their terrific TA. Those 15 minutes will fly by! Get your questions written down now!
Look forward to seeing you.
By the way, did you see the report on today's BBC news about the price of uniforms? The average primary uniform costs £255 rising to £325. What?! Thankfully not at Muscliff! Get involved in the uniform price war in the supermarkets (according to the news) and grab those £1 white polo shirts (not 'normal' shirts please with long sleeves and loads of buttons). They WILL get dirty, even filthy sometimes so you don't want to be spending much on them. Don't forget to name every bit of anything that comes into school- wellies, jumper, coats...
Girls can wear trousers (and boys can wear skirts - just in the interest of being non-gender specific!) and ones with elasticated waistbands (like joggers) are fine for our Rainbows. Please don't let your Rainbow wear tights or pinafores on PE days (Tuesday/Wednesday) or in fact anything that they can't get in and out of completely independently. Feel free to wear uniform for the 1:1 meeting or not.
Friday 17th August
So have you joined the library's Summer Reading Challenge yet? It is such a great habit to get into each year. Obviously you will be reading to your child but if they are looking at the pictures and following the story, then they are becoming readers! At the beginning of the term we will send home books with no words so that they get used to using pictures to tell a story and will then get used to using the pictures to help work out words in a context eg we would not expect your child to be able to sound out a words like "rainbow" or "pavement" or "chocolate" but using the picture clues and the first letter sounds, they soon will... with your help and practice. So don't worry about trying to get them to write their name (we will do that and show them (and you) how to do it in cursive rather than print), just keep reading to and with them.
Check out Book of the Month if you want an example text.
Love from the Rainbow Readers
Tuesday 7th August
Plans are afoot for our first 'parentcraft' session. We mentioned doing "something about Muscliff Mouse" because that is our topic to being with and Mrs Flynn has got straight onto the case with a ton of creative ideas. Watch this space!
Also, don't throw away any old sheets or plastic stuff/wooded trellis that we could use in our Secret Garden. We would love to add 'den-building' to our outside curriculum.