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Year 1 - Cherry & Chestnut

Welcome to Year 1!

18 March 2022



You may have heard this name mentioned at home a lot! We've just started our new English topic about a young girl called Ossiri. We began by looking at a picture of her and using our inference skills to discover who she is. We then looked at a picture of her camp to gain more of an understanding about this mysterious girl. After reading the first couple of pages, the children learned that she is a traveller who loves music. To understand more about her, we listened to folk music. The children listened, sang and danced just like Ossiri. To accompany the music, the children each had a percussion instrument to play. The children felt a variety of emotions when listening to different songs and thoroughly enjoying stepping in the footsteps of Ossiri. 


We had the privilege of having Year 10 Hockerill students in to teach the children PE. The students taught the children a variety of team games. It was a wonderful moment to watch the children work together as well as having fun. We are incredibly proud of how well the children behaved around our visitors and we look forward to welcoming Hockerill back in next week. 


For our current topic, Unity in the Community, we have been exploring Google Earth. We travelled to Dubai, Australia and Paris, as well as standing on top of the Matterhorn. We found our school and discussed what an aerial view is. The children then worked in a group to create their own bird’s-eye view map of the school. 

We have also been learning about road safety.  We looked at the Green Cross Code and taught children to think and look before crossing. We then took the children out to the road, within the school grounds, to practise crossing the road safely. 

We'd like to thank Mr Van Baalen, Mrs Turner, Mr Polkinghorne,  Miss Galea, Carla and Mrs Verbrugge for helping on our walk around Plaw Hatch Close today. 


3 March 2022

Budding Scientists!


Over the last couple of weeks, we have been exploring materials. We began by naming materials and describing their properties. We then became true scientists with our own experiment! Poor Ted had got wet and needed an umbrella! The children began their experiment by predicting which material would work best. After this, the children dropped water on to paper, plastic, fabric and wood to see which material would work best. At the end of the lesson the children wrote their conclusion and we found that plastic was the best material as it is waterproof! 


Mrs Lamb and Ms Lynch started STEM week with a bang in an exciting assembly involving some elephant toothpaste! Then we had an inspirational virtual visit from Drew Steel, an RAF aeroplane specialist. He introduced our theme for the week - parachutes! He set us a task to find out about Dolly Shepherd, an Edwardian parachutist. Across the week, the children began to design, make and evaluate their own parachutes. As a class we went into the hall to launch our parachutes. We had great fun! 


We had a dramatic end to our English this week! Last week the children began designers and made their very own hats! But unfortunately, during the night one of the hats had been taken!! The children became police detectives to solve the crime - who was it?! They filled out their own police reports after questioning the children and adults in the room. The culprits were Mrs Kitchen and Mrs Bennett!! 


11 February 2022

Super Sleuths!


Through our current English book, I Want my Hat Back, Cherry and Chestnut have been investigating the case of the missing hat. We thought carefully about the best questions to ask the bear. We needed to get as much information as possible to help the bear find his hat. From this we were able to write a newspaper report with the facts. Through drama, the children then investigated who could have stolen the bear's hat. We will continue our task and hope to solve the mystery to help the sad bear.


We began our topic of the Dancing Spy and learnt about the life of Josephine Baker. We discussed how it would feel to live with segregation, as she had to. In our PE lessons, we have discovered the dances that made Josephine Baker famous. The children really enjoyed learning the Itch, Turkey Trot, Mess Around and Charleston. You could ask them to give you a demonstration! Josephine was famous for being a spy in World War II. The children had great fun learning how to use code to write and read messages just like our hero Josephine.


On Safer Internet Day the children learnt how to remain safe whilst online. They have made an avatar, username and password to hide their personal information.


In maths, we have been using our knowledge of number bonds to 10 to help us solve number bonds to 20. We have used Numicon, part-part-whole models and tens frames to assist our learning. 


We wish you a lovely half-term. 

Mrs Lamb and Miss Roach


21 January 2022

The Invisible


What a great start to the new year! 


In English, we have been looking at the book The Invisible by Tom Percival. We have focused on the characters’ feelings and emotions throughout the book.  We have been really pleased to see the great empathy and insight displayed by the children. They have been able to write as Isabel using the first person. As part of our learning, we split the class into two and the children discussed if it would be better to be hungry or cold. From this we explored the work of Marcus Rashford MBE. We decided he really is a modern hero.


We have been working on numbers up to twenty since we came back from the break. The children can now explain that 14 is made up of ten and four more. We have been working with numicon, tens frames and dienes to explain our thinking.


In our history lessons we were shocked to discovered that Victorians did not have electricity! We tried to imagine not having light switches or central heating. Having investigated the differences between our homes and those of Victorians, most children preferred their modern lifestyle.


Continuing with gymnastics, we have learnt to walk along a bench and jump from the end in a controlled manner using a variety of jumps. The children have shown great listening skills when in the hall and are improving at Simon Says in the warmup!


During RE, Year 1 have learnt how to write in Hebrew. The children each made a Torah scroll, rolling up the ends, then they copied the Hebrew words just like a Jewish person would. We were very impressed with the children's efforts.

21 December 2021




Wow, what a term it has been! We've spent the last week celebrating both Christmas and Hanukkah. 

We started Interfaith Week by talking about different religions and their celebrations. In Year 1, the children have been learning about the Jewish festival of light, Hanukkah. They have drawn their own menorahs and can explain why there are nine candles, as well as why the middle one is so special. We then taught the children how to play dreidel - they loved it! We finished off the week with the children tasting some doughnuts cooked in oil. We've been so impressed with how much the children have remembered all about Hannukah. 

We've also been celebrating Christmas. We started off with Decoration Day, which the children loved! They were split into 4 groups and spent the day making decorations as well as contributing to the Christmas nativity display - it looks wonderful! In RE, the children made their own Christingles and learnt about what each part represents. 

The children had a very special visit..... the one and only Father Christmas! They were amazed to see him in person. Chestnut received some trains and a track. Cherry received marble run and Play-Doh. 

The children were delighted to make Santa hats for their lunch. We all enjoyed a very delicious Christmas lunch from Mary and her team. 

To finish off the week, the children (and adults) thoroughly enjoyed a Christmas disco! 

We hope you all have a happy and healthy Christmas with your families. 

Stay safe and we look forward to seeing you on Thursday 6th January.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! 


3 December 2021


Calling All Superheroes


Was it a bird? Was it a plane? No, it was the Year 1 team launching their new topic of Zero to Hero. The teachers donned their capes and leapt into the realm of superheroes. The children decided what their superpower was and gave themselves a name. 


Our first hero is Beatrix Potter. We have begun to explore her life. Using the book Beatrix and her Bunnies we have written sentences about her or used our sounds to write labels for a picture in the book. Building on this, in our history lesson we looked at a variety of facts and then plotted Beatrix's life onto a timeline. The children are beginning to understand why she is a hero and we will continue this after Christmas.


During PE, the children have started a unit of gymnastics. They have learnt how to hold a pose and then transition to another using control. They had to think about using their muscles for balance and control just like a superhero would.


We had a lively discussion in our PSHE lesson on boys vs girls. We challenged the expected norms and decided that boys could play with dolls, jewellery could be worn by boys and girls plus a girl's favourite colour does not have to be pink. The children amazed Miss Roach and Mrs Lamb with their eloquence while expressing their opinions.


12 November 2021



To begin our mini topic for the next three weeks, the children became sailors! Each child had a sailor hat to help get into character. To direct their ships, they needed to know the compass directions. We played a game of finding North, East, South, and West around the classroom before looking at a real compass. The children were fascinated by the moving needle and loved being able to hold a compass. We then taught them the mnemonic of Never Eat Shredded Wheat to help them remember the four points. Children then thought of their own sentence such as Never Eat Soggy Waffles or Naughty Elephants Squirt Water!

Continuing in our next geography lesson, we looked at England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. It was lovely to see so many souvenirs that the children had brought in and the confidence they had when telling us about them. We had a Yorkshire flat cap, a tin whistle, a miner's lamp, a football shirt, Scottish tie, Gaelic football, photos of holidays in England and some Welsh slate. The Scottish shortbread was a real treat! 

In science, we have been exploring the school grounds looking for signs of autumn. We found red leaves, yellow leaves, pinecones, and mushrooms! We talked about daylight being shorter in autumn as well as talking about the changes with the weather. 

In English, we’ve been looking at writing instructions. We looked at the recipe book Gruffalo’s Crumble for inspiration. We made a fox's sandwich and terrible tusks and the children then wrote their own simplified instructions. We focused on including bossy words within their sentences. 


A challenge for your children: can they remember the seven continents?! 

22 October 2021


Happily Ever After... 


Wow, what a half term! It's been a busy few weeks. 

During art, the children created their own clay pinch pot. They got to decide whether they were going to create Cinderella's jewellery pot or Prince Charming's cufflinks pot. We were so impressed with how well the children shaped and styled their creation. The children then used clay tools to create a design to further improve their work. Once dry, the children painted their pot with either silver or gold paint - they look amazing! Hopefully, they are all safe and sound at home!

In PE we have been thinking about how to convey emotion through our body and facial expressions. We then used this to portray fairy tale characters - we had the angry giant, the sad Cinderella, and the happy Little Red Riding Hood. The children performed their sequence of movements to the rest of the class. 

For our topic finale, the children recreated The Ugly Duckling. We want to say a huge well done to Olivia and Mae for their brilliant performance. The children loved re-telling the story! Please do visit the school website to view them. 

To conclude the half term, we have spent this week looking at nature and poetry. We began by performing a poem, ‘The Worm’ by Ralph Bergengren. We looked at the rhyming couplets and used actions to help us remember it. We discussed how to use our voice to further improve the poem by adding expression and speed. Continuing our theme of poetry, the children then wrote their own acrostic poem, using the word ‘tree’. We finished the week with some observational drawing which the children showed great patience. 

We are all incredibly proud of how hard the children have worked. We want to wish you all a happy and safe half term.


1st October 2021




After focussing on The Ugly Duckling last week, we have been climbing into our next book, Jack and the Beanstalk! We began by looking at the beanstalk and using adjectives to describe it. We had words such as twisted, curly, spiralling, and enormous. From this we then took one giant leap and thought about what the giant

was really like! We discovered he was protective, friendly, hardworking and grumpy! 


To aid our understanding of the story, we have been creating a soundscape for different sections of the story. The children have used a variety of percussion instruments, voices and some body parts to add suspense and drama! 


In PSHE, we have been looking at acceptable and unacceptable behaviours in school. The children have been learning about the power of the compliment! Mary has noticed that the children have had impeccable manners when in the dining room. 


We have been working on our fundamental maths skills and checking our accuracy. This week we have been identifying one more and less. We have used counters, numicon and a number line to do this. During RE this week, the children had a visit from Reverend Su Tarran to talk through a Christian baptism and to understand why Christians go to church. We would like to thank Su for her time and enthusiasm. 

17 September 2021

Once Upon a Time.. 


We have been so impressed with how well the children have settled into Year 1 and the daily routines. It has been lovely seeing the children confident and happy coming into school. 


This half term we are looking at fairy tales. Our first traditional tale is The Ugly Duckling. We began by looking at the setting of the story. From this the children drew a picture of a farm and labelled what they could see; for example: pond, tractor and barn. We then thought of adjectives to describe how The Ugly Duckling looked and felt whilst the other ducklings were being mean. The children showed great empathy towards The Ugly Duckling and in PSHE the children wrote to the other ducklings expressing their feelings as if they were The Ugly Duckling.  We continued to read the story and the children were amazed to find that The Ugly Duckling transformed into a beautiful swan! 


We then transferred our knowledge of The Ugly Duckling to our science learning. We began by exploring the characteristics of a bird - webbed feet, beak, wings, feathers and lays eggs. As a class we then compared a variety of birds and even heard their calls! Using our learning power, collaboration, we created a collage of The Ugly Duckling using real feathers - they look amazing! This week we focussed on the word 'habitat' and its meaning. From this, we decided to investigate our own pond. This made us wonder what other habitats we have at school. We explored Summercroft's field and then created cosy habitats for some woodland animals that might visit. 


In maths, we have been improving our fluency. At the beginning of each maths lesson the children have been working on their subitising skills - looking at a pattern of objects to determine how many there are without counting.