It was a pleasure and a delight to welcome children back into Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 on Monday. The sun shone for us and all the children skipped in happily. We were particularly pleased to see how confidently the children coped with the new car park system and a huge thank you to you all for helping us to make it work. Children are washing their hands thoroughly and regularly and are all very conscious of the two metre rule. The packed lunches are also proving a bit of a novelty!
Meanwhile, we have been extremely impressed at how children in Years 2-5 are continuing to access ‘Fairstead From Home’ and are all being so diligent with their learning. We hope that it will not be too much longer before are able to open our doors to everyone!
Reception has been full of joy this week and daily outdoor picnics have been a particular highlight! Mrs Sanders is so proud of everyone for returning with such excitement and enthusiasm.
The children have been thrilled to find out their new topic is ‘The Sea,’ and have particularly enjoyed reading the story of ‘Billy’s Bucket.’
In Maths, the children have been helping Billy to buy more sea creatures to add to his very special bucket. They had great fun using a range of different coins to make their purchases. In Art, the classroom was filled with creativity, as the children enthusiastically designed their favourite sea creatures. They will be on display very soon!
It has been wonderful having the children back in Year 1, watching smiling faces as they greeted each other and played with their friends.
In Geography, the children have continued to work on oceans, seas and rockpools , looking at how sea life use camouflage to protect themselves from predators.
In Maths, they have been working on word problems and Mrs Scott was so proud as the children showed all they different ways they have learnt to work out a mathematical problem. In Literacy, the children have been working towards extending their writing and all agreed it made for a far more interesting read. In Art, they made newspaper cats and dogs, which were so lovely they could have been exhibited at the Tate! What a busy week they have had!
Year 2 found themselves in Antarctica this week. They have learned about the landscape features of this cold continent and about the penguins and other animals that live there. In Art, the children were challenged to decorate a penguin template using cool and warm colours. They used colour blocking to create some extremely effective pictures. Bert completed his penguin on the computer and Isabella has called her artwork, ‘Penguin at the Disco! In Science, the children have been learning about their own life cycles. The highlight of the week was the Baby Quiz which was completed on Zoom. It was lots of fun and the children and parents thoroughly enjoyed guessing who the beautiful, bouncing babies grew into!
Years 3 & 4
This week, Years 3 and 4 have had a ‘Japanese Week’ where most of our learning has been based around our current Humanities topic. We’ve even managed to do some Japan-themed Maths with the Japanese multiplication method and Sudoku (although this has a Japanese name, it wasn’t actually invented there!).
In English, Year 3 have been reading the true story of ‘Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes’ and have completed follow-up work each day.
Year 4 have written Japanese Haiku and Tanka poems. A Tanka consists of five lines with a syllable pattern of 5,7,5,7,7. The third line of a Tanka is considered the ‘pivot’ line as it is the ‘turning point’ of the story being told and the final lines describe the feelings. Year 4 have written quite emotive Tanka poems, that describe some of the main events of our class reader, ‘Way of the Warrior’ by Andrew Matthews.
Children in both year groups were set the task of researching a Japan-based topic of their choice at the beginning of the week. To date, some children have found out about Japanese sports, famous buildings, origami, Pokemon, Japanese animals and sea creatures, physical features of the country, and Japanese food. The information has been presented in a range of creative ways; posters, booklets, videos, models and PowerPoint presentations. It has been wonderful to see the fantastic work the children have produced.
Other activities this week have included finding out about a type of Japanese comic called ‘Manga’. The children have created their own Manga-style comic characters. They have learned about the Buddhist festival of ‘Obon’ and the children have made their own ‘Obon lanterns’. The children have also learned some Japanese greetings and have invented their own mini conversations in Japanese.
The children also watched some traditional Japanese fan dancing and made their own fans, which they decorated with a range of Japanese symbolism from flowers and blossom trees to calligraphy. A highlight of the week has been getting all the children in Years 3 and 4 together for a joint Zoom session, in which we used the fans we have made to perform a short fan dance together. We were impressed by the effort everyone made!
Once again, the children have worked brilliantly and it has been a thoroughly enjoyable week.
After a glorious week of weather whilst we were on holiday, Year 5 returned to their studies with gusto and it is a credit to them all. As regular as clockwork, they submit their work, respond to feedback and raise questions if unsure. Whilst none of us desire home schooling to continue, it is teaching the children a new range of skills and developing their independence. I am sure that these skills will be useful both later in life and in the present.
I chose to study a shorter book this week as it fitted into our topics from last half term so well. ‘The Man Who Bought A Mountain’ is all about how greed can overcome inner peace and compassion which is an extension of the RE we have been studying. In addition, it was a new way of looking at mountains and allowed us to use the images we had seen to help us imagine the home of Yash – the main character. The class rose to the challenge well, showing me a great learning ethos.
In addition, we have drawn to a close our study of the Maya people. You may already have found out that we studied Maya food today if your children have shared the recipes I posted. I apologise if you wanted a relaxing weekend and are now being asked to cook with them! Just think of it as the start of being cooked for regularly once they gain confidence. Who knows, maybe they will start doing the Sunday roast! I hope that you have an enjoyable weekend and I look forward to ‘seeing’ the children again on Monday.
Year 6 have thoroughly enjoyed their first week back at school. They have been working hard in the mornings but having extremely creative afternoons. On Monday, they tried their hand at cooking, which was an interesting experience of learning how to read recipes, cracking eggs, measure accurately and actually mix the ingredients. In the end, they successfully made ‘rocky road’ and jam biscuits. During the rest of this week, they have enjoyed some entertaining activities such as, a friendly rounders game featuring star guests, Mrs Cooke and Miss Hodgkinson; designing their new island and investigating two of the Crest Science activities; Racing Rockets and making a bird’s nest to carry an ‘egg’ without collapsing! A particular highlight for the children was a visit by Digby, Dr. Brereton’s new Black Labrador puppy. He was adored by all!
Key Workers’ Children
If your child is currently attending school as a Key Workers’ child and you drop-off or collect your child outside of normal school hours, please could you call 07526 352010 to let Miss Day know that you have arrived and are waiting. She will then either come to collect your child from you or bring your child out to you.
If you also have a child who attends Nursery whom you collect at the same time, please continue to call the Nursery only on the usual number. Thank you.
Holiday Club – Summer 2020
We are delighted to announce that Holiday Club will be running as usual for Fairstead House children throughout the Summer Holidays. Please find a booking form here.
Head’s Awards of Merit
This week, Head’s Awards were won by the following children, for the wonderful reasons given in this morning’s assembly. Well done, children!
Reception – All of Reception!
Year 1 – Cora, Catherine and Anna
Year 2 – Fenella
Year 3 – James
Year 4 – Ashleigh
Year 5 – Alexander and Jos
Year 6 – Isabella
With my best wishes for a lovely weekend with your children,