Year 2 - Holly & Oak
Welcome to Year 2!
21 July 2021
A Wonderful Ending for a Wonderful Year Group!
In English, again inspired by our coast topic, we are looking at a non-fiction text about sharks. The children are researching facts about what sharks eat, and how they swim and sense. Now that they are ‘shark experts’, they are writing fact files to showcase their knowledge.
Continuing our science learning on materials, we did an investigation into which materials were waterproof and then used this knowledge to design and make a new boat for Mr Grinling, the Lighthouse Keeper. The children thought about their boat designs really carefully and we had great fun testing them out to see if they would sink or float. As a finale to our materials unit we will be looking at how we can change the shape of materials by twisting, bending, pulling etc. As a culmination of this learning and an end of year treat, the children will be attempting to break a Guinness World Record…ask them how they got on at the end of the week!
As a challenge for our last few maths lessons, the children are creating their own board games based on The Lighthouse Keepers Lunch. They have had to think of the rules, character pieces, challenge cards and design the layout working as a team with a partner. We are looking forward to playing the games over the last few days at school.
We had a fabulous time in Holland-on-Sea at the beach. The children had great fun paddling in the sea, collecting shells and building sand castles. They did us proud and were really well behaved and it was a fabulous way to end our school year.
After what has been a year like no other, we have finally come to the end of Year 2 and we would like to wish you all a restful and fun summer holidays and hope all the children settle really well into Year 3 in September.
Ms Lynch & Mrs Fuat
2 July 2021
Oh We Do Like to be Beside the Seaside!
To continue building the anticipation for our beach trip this week we have been looking at coastal features in geography, focussing on understanding about how the area we live in might be different to a coastal town and giving us some things to spot on our trip.
In design technology, the children have designed and then sewn amazing hand puppets based on the characters from our book, The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch. For many of the children this was their first time sewing and they did a fantastic job, as you can see from the pictures.
Also inspired by our book we have written alternative stories called ‘The Lighthouse Keeper’s Vegetables’ which tells the sorry tale of how pesky rabbits ate all of Mrs Grinling’s prize-winning vegetables and ‘The Lighthouse Keeper’s Boat’ which is a disastrous tale of the day Mr Grinling discovered a hole in his beloved boat. The children did such a great job of adapting the original story and making it their own that we have made mini books out of their stories.
In maths we have been looking at capacity and doubling and halving, and we are going to use our knowledge to make cocktails for Mr and Mrs Grinling’s lunch - making sure we measure the amounts carefully by reading the scales.
As materials is our focus in science, we are going to do an investigation into which materials are waterproof with the aim of designing a new waterproof boat for Mr Grinling to row to the lighthouse with.
We were really fortunate with the weather for our trip to the beach yesterday and we had an amazing day. There will be photos to look at on the classroom windows. The children were brilliantly behaved and good fun was had by all. It was also really exciting for lots of the children as it was their first time on a coach. Everyone returned home happy, but exhausted—and we may all be finding sand for weeks to come!
18 June 2021
The Mystery Of The Stolen Lunch!
What a strange start to the new half term! It all began on Monday morning last week when Mrs Fuat’s lunch was devoured by a classroom intruder. We went to assembly as usual and upon our return, we found her lunch scattered all over the floor. Amongst the crumbs we discovered feathers, bird poo and some kind of animal fur! We set about trying to uncover the thief. In the end most of us thought it was a bird scavenging for food.
After these unusual events we decided to read a story about a stolen lunch called The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch. We particularly enjoyed working in our groups to sequence and draw the story on a story map. We are now writing character profiles and alternative versions of the story. We will also be designing and making our own hand puppets to help with our story telling.
The story links well to our new topic about coasts. We will be looking at the features of coastal environments and comparing them to those of a town. We are looking forward to our trip to the beach, and feel that it will give the children a first-hand experience of a coastal environment.
In maths we have been problem solving with money. Please continue to expose your children to different coins and their values, as this is an area that they need to develop.
It’s been a busy start to the half term and we are sure that it will be an even busier end! We look forward to sharing with you pictures of our puppets when they are completed.
Mrs Fuat & Ms Lynch
28 May 2021
Forest Topic Finale
We have had great fun finishing off our topic of Forests with our virtual trip to South America to learn about the largest forest in the world: The Amazon Rainforest. To give the children a flavour of the culture, they practised their cooking skills, creating a bean salad and trying tortilla chips and different dips from the continent.
Combining our science topic of plants and our Forest topic we created a forest of our own whilst learning about wild flowers and the parts and functions of different parts of plants. We have set up an investigation into what plants need to grow healthily and drawn our predictions of what the plants will look like after the experiment. And finally, we are eagerly observing our own beans as they begin to germinate.
In maths we have recapped addition and subtraction and have introduce the column method now that children are secure with their number place value.
Tied to our Forest topic and the animals that live there, we have been using the book Augustus And His Smile in English to improve our own writing with the focus on the use of conjunctions and using descriptive words to create expanded noun phrases.
We wish you all a very fun and hopefully sunny half term!
Ms Lynch & Mrs Fuat
14 May 2021
Forest Adventurers in Year 2!
We are enjoying our Forests topic in Oak and Holly classes and particularly enjoyed our trip to Birchanger Woods. We were overjoyed to be finally taking our learning off site and although not our usual trip, it was a great success. The weather was dry and the sun even came out for our picnic lunch! The conditions were also perfect for our mini beast hunt. Armed with magnifying pots and tickling sticks we captured our creepy crawlies and then looked at them closely in order to observe their body parts and then identify them.
We have also been identifying trees and their leaves. Then we collected leaves and used our observation skills again when we sketched them.
Our English work this week has been based around the famous painting, ‘Tiger in a Tropical Storm’ by Henri Rousseau. We imagined stepping into the painting to build a descriptive word bank to help us improve our writing.
We have been getting to grips with fractions over the last couple of weeks; focusing on finding fractions of shapes and amounts. It’s been a bit tricky but we’ve worked hard to understand them using a bar model to help us.
In science, we have been looking at seeds and bulbs and last week we planted some bean seeds. We will be watching them grow over the next coming weeks and will be keeping bean diaries to record our observations.
We are looking forward to Diversity Week which is coming up before half term and will share some of our work in the next newsletter.
23 April 2021
It is lovely to have the children back after the Easter break and we have thrown ourselves into our new topic of Forests. Using the story of The Tin Forest, we have collaged woodland animals and are exploring the different types of forests around the world. Linked to this is in science we are looking at local habitats which will include our upcoming visit to Birchanger Woods. In computing we have also looked at classifying woodland animals based on their physical attributes.
In English our focus has been sentence structure and developing descriptive language and in maths we are recapping multiplication and introducing division.
As the weather has improved we are taking advantage of being able to get on the field and have been learning how to play tee-cricket.
26 March 2021
Pole to Pole
It has been great to be back in school and the children in Year 2 have settled amazingly! We are so proud of them. We really have been in unknown territory over the past few months so we decided to continue with this theme and become adventurers, exploring the Polar Regions.
We began by imagining what it would be like to be an explorer and made a list of all the things we would need. We decided that if we were travelling to colder climates, we would need warm clothing so we dressed ourselves in several layers. We discovered that it was actually quite hard to move!
In geography, we have been map reading and had an interesting afternoon trying to locate the different continents and oceans. The balloon globes were definitely a hit with the children!
Our science learning this half term has been centred around polar habitats and how animals have adapted to their environment. We will be continuing with this next half term, looking at microhabitats as part of our new topic on Forests.
Hope you have a restful Easter break and we look forward to seeing you next term.
18 December 2020
The UK Tour Continues in Year 2
It has been an exciting and busy time in Year 2 over the past few weeks. We have been getting ready for Christmas with our Nativity and Decoration Day, as well as completing all of our normal day-to-day learning.
We have continued learning about the different countries of the UK. We have looked at famous landmarks, symbols and emblems and national dishes. Last week, we decided to try a traditional UK breakfast…porridge! We linked this to our English learning on Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Luckily our porridge was not too hot, not too cold but just right! Most children tasted a sample and decided that they would like two breakfasts every day!
In PE, we have had good fun learning how to do the Highland Fling and dancing a country dance with a partner. It was a bit tricky, but with a little more practice, we could be ready for Strictly soon! Watch this space!
Our science learning about humans and healthy lifestyles has continued with learning about personal hygiene and germs. We completed a ‘Glitter Bugs’ investigation to find the best way to wash our hands—something that we are getting really good at these days!
The children are tired after a fun-filled half term and are now ready for a rest. We would like to thank you for your support and wish you all a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year.
4 December 2020
Getting Into the Festive Spirit
We have had great fun learning our Christmas songs and practising for our Nativity performance in Year 2. We are sad that we will not be able to invite you in to attend in person this year but, as previously mentioned, we intend to film the children acting and singing and put this on the school website so the children can share the efforts of their hard work and everyone can enjoy the performance at home.
In maths, we have been learning to read the time to o’clock and half past. The children did really well with this activity and we would ask that if possible you continue to ask them at home to tell you the time, so they become really confident. This week we are using rulers and metre sticks to measure objects and ourselves!
In science our ‘Healthy Living’ topic continues, and we move on from healthy eating to focusing on the importance of exercise. We had great fun identifying and labelling body parts and we will be incorporating what we learn into our PE lessons to set and improve our exercise goals.
This week sees the start of our ‘traditional tales’ unit in English. We will be focusing on the well-known story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. The children will familiarise themselves with the story and then get creative by adapting the story to create their own fairy-tale.
Our geography learning continues within our topic of the ‘UK’. We have been looking at key landmarks in London and around the UK and are now starting to focus on each country individually, looking at their unique cultures and traditions.
13 November 2020
Celebrating Harvest in Year 2
Autumn has arrived and so has another Arts Week! This year our theme was ‘Harvest Festival’. Year 2 began the week by looking at why we celebrate harvest and why it is so important to ensure that everyone has enough food to eat.
We looked at the type of foods harvested in the autumn in the UK and then took on the challenge of sketching some of the vegetables from first hand observations. It was tricky but we all achieved some fabulous drawings in the end.
We also studied the artist Arcimboldo, an Italian artist who created portraits using different fruit and vegetables. It was fun trying to recreate artwork inspired by his painting, Vertumnus.
As our finale project, we retold the journey of potatoes to crisps through the medium of collage and puppets. We then filmed it to share with the rest of the school. Hopefully, we will be able to upload it to Seesaw for you to enjoy too, so watch this space!
23 October 2020
What a Busy Term!
In science, we have been continuing our work on understanding more about animals including humans and thinking about food chains. We noticed that some animals are carnivores, some herbivores and some, like most humans, omnivores. We created food chain booklets to share our knowledge.
For our maths work we have continued our work on subtraction and spent time looking at 2D shapes. The children have identified the properties of shapes including their name and how many sides and corners they have.
As we were so proud of the postcards we wrote in the first person as Princess Pearl and the amazing dragon eyes the children moulded from clay, we made a display to show off our work to other children in the school. This week in English we have been focusing on poetry and are writing our own poems called 'A Recipe For a Dragon' using similes and imperative verbs.
In history we have rounded off our topic of Monarchs by comparing two iconic British queens; Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth II.
We are making the most of the drier weather whilst we still can to head outside and practise our gross motor skills in PE, focussing on catching and throwing different apparatus.
We have introduced the children to a new programme called Numbots in our Computing lessons which is a fun number game and will form part of their maths homework after half term. Letters with log in details to follow.
We wish you all a very relaxing half term and look forward to seeing you when we come back.
9 October 2020
Dragon Story Telling
We have had another busy few weeks in Year 2 continuing with our Dragon themed work. Last week we read the story ‘Zog’ by Julia Donaldson. We first sequenced the story and then have been practising speaking the story; adding our own actions. The children have really enjoyed this! This week we have been writing in the first person and have written postcards and recounts.
Leading on from our computing work on dragon eyes, we had a creative morning, modelling dragon eyes from clay. Our finished eyes look amazing, despite being slightly tricky to make!
Our history topic on the monarchy continues. We had good fun trying to remember who is who in the current royal family when we made a royal family tree.
In maths, we are continuing to fill the gaps in our knowledge. We have been thinking more about place value and using this to help us with our work on estimation. This week we are beginning to work on addition and subtraction using concrete resources and pictorial representations.
As the end of half term approaches, we wanted to reassure you that we are aware that the children have had to settle into new routines and a much more structured day in Year 2, so they are possibly more tired than usual. We will continue to incorporate lots of mindful activities into the school day and work hard on overcoming their anxieties.
25 September 2020
Watch Out, There’s a Dragon About!
Year 2 were fascinated to hear reports that a dragon had been spotted in Bishop’s Stortford. Our intrepid investigators went to search for evidence to see whether the dragon had visited our school, and discovered lots of evidence including a nest of eggs! Using this extraordinary event as inspiration, we have drawn and painted our own dragons in art and used descriptive language when writing about them in English. In computing we used programmes to design what dragon eyes might look like.
In maths we have been revising our number bonds within and to 10 and had fun looking at the place value of numbers to decide which ones were greater and lesser and correctly writing the symbols to show this.
In science our topic is Animals including Humans so we have been looking at the needs of different animals for survival and how they differ.
Our history focus is Monarchs so we have been discovering who the key monarchs have been in the UK. We made our own crowns and imagined what rules we would decree if we were the King or Queen – there were some very interesting suggestions!
11 September 2020
We are so happy to be back to school and have enjoyed seeing the children back together! We are taking a much slower approach with our learning and have been concentrating on allowing the children to settle into the Year 2 routines.
We thought we would begin the year by sharing some books about being together and being a good friend. We have read We Are Together, which looks at how sharing life’s experiences with others makes it so much better. We decided to paint ourselves and think about the qualities that we can share with our friends. We have also read Sharing a Shell and have done some work about being kind to others.
In maths, we are concentrating on counting forwards and backwards in ones, twos, fives and tens. Please continue to practise this at home.
We are really looking forward to starting our new topic ‘Monarchs and Monsters’ and getting to know you all.