Term 1 Topic Plan For Parents
Year One have started the year off with a roaring start and thoroughly enjoyed our ‘Hiss, Roar, Squawk!’ topic. During our science lessons, we looked at different ways that animals can be classified and the features of each of these classifications. Did you know that a whale is a mammal even though it lives in the sea? Or that reptiles can be identified by their smooth, scaly skin and ability to lay eggs? Year One found these facts out by reading a range of insightful non-fiction texts. The children applied this knowledge to create their own class book which demonstrated each classification of animal, alongside a range of facts for each animal group.
After enjoying the popular Simon James text, ‘My Friend Whale’, the children explored what it means for animals to be ‘endangered’ and how we can help make a difference towards the preservation of endangered animal species. During our English lessons, the children created informative posters that explained how we can shape the future to protect endangered animals.
Who left the doors open? Each night, for a whole week, an animal snuck into each year 1 classroom leaving a trail of clues behind. The children placed the clues together to reveal the animal’s identity! They were incredibly inspired and wrote fantastic animal riddles; drawing on all of their animal classification knowledge to help them extend their sentences with the use of conjunctions. By knowing all about each classification of animal, we now know how to take care and look after them too.
As part of the children’s wider curriculum opportunities, they have been growing green fingers by digging up weeds from garden beds and planting a range of bulbs ready for the spring. The children have been developing their understanding of the life cycle of a plant and how particular plants and bulbs can support wildlife, such as bees. We are thankful to Mr Greenfield who has been a busy bee himself by creating hedgehog houses for us to add to our garden next month. We will be learning about how to help hedgehogs and other animals in the run up to their hibernation!
Term 2 Topic Plan For Parents
Have you met Isaac? Isaac is a hedgehog from the story ‘The Very Helpful Hedgehog’. He has visited our classrooms this term so that the year one children can reflect on ways in which we can help hedgehogs during this winter season. We have recalled our previous animal knowledge and read a range of key facts to create informative ‘how to help a hedgehog’ leaflets! Here are some of the fantastic sentences the children have written to show ways in which we can support hedgehogs;
“You can put out cat food for the hedgehogs to eat.” Nancy, Koalas.
“You can call the RSPCA if you see a poorly hedgehog who is not in hibernation!” Neveah, Kangaroos.
“You can build a hedgehog home out of leaves and twigs. This will help keep the hedgehogs warm." Rosie, Giraffes.
“You can put out fresh water for the hedgehogs to drink.” Kodi, Elephants.
On your marks… Get set… BAKE!
Chop, peel, slice, rub and sprinkle are just some of the cooking skills year one have developed this term. Our "crumble" journey began by sampling a range of apples to decide which type of apple was our favourite and why. After settling on Braeburn apples, we created our crumble by peeling, chopping, sprinkling and rubbing our ingredients together, carefully following the recipe! Not forgetting the importance of having clean hands and being safe and careful with the cooking equipment! The friendly kitchen staff helped us to cook our crumble and we evaluated the taste, appearance and texture of our product whilst reflecting on what we enjoyed and what we would change for next time.
Remember, remember the 5th November
We analysed and evaluated a range of sources that provided information about rulers of the United Kingdom past and present. We relived the development of the Magna Carter through a moving story that explained the key events that lead to the development of the United Kingdom’s government and the end of Kings and Queens having full power over the United Kingdom. We even turned into parliamentary members ourselves and decided what we would spend our budgets on across Ashford! We then time travelled to 1605 to understand the turmoil between Guy Fawkes, his gang and King James I. We evaluated a range of sources and constructed arguments as to whether we think Guy Fawkes was right in his actions and if he deserved the punishment he received. This understanding allowed us to make connections as to how the failure in The Gunpowder Plot was so significant and why we celebrate bonfire night today.
Year one have been developing their empathy by creating a lantern for Lazlo, a character from the story ‘The Dark’ who has a fear of the dark. As a class, we reflected on Lazlo’s feeling of fear and considered ways in which we can help him. We collaborated to create lanterns for Lazlo and wrote informative instructions for others who may share this same fear!
Term 3 Topic Plan for Parents
Can we build it? Yes we can!
As part of our ‘Dream Big!’ topic, year one have been developing their understanding of how people’s jobs shape the world around us and how they impact on our day to day living. As part of their learning, they learnt about the work builders do. The children constructed their own question sentences, thinking carefully about what they would like to find out.
Here are a few examples of their questions:
“How do you make bricks stick together?” Ioannis, Koalas
“How do you stay safe when you are working?” Poppy, Kangaroos
“Is it harder to work in winter, when it’s cold?” Morgan, Elephants
Our builder, Mr Greenfield, did a fantastic job of sharing his own building experience and answered the children’s questions. He shared his experiences of roofing, constructing items from wood and being on a builder’s site!
Shop ‘til you drop!
To further our learning about materials, the children spent a morning at Ashford’s Designer Outlet. They learnt about the different materials that the outlet was made from and why that material had been used. We even discovered that walls can be covered in plants and that these are called ‘living walls’. The outlet has the largest one in all of Europe!
Peter Heritage, a Retail Manager at the outlet, kindly planned and delivered a presentation to the children regarding the construction of the new section of the outlet. During this presentation, Peter explained to the children how big the outlet expansion was, the different professionals that were needed to construct it and how a small family of water voles were protected and looked after during a large part of the building works.
We visited shoe shops to think about the materials that are used to create shoes – we now know that shoes have material tops and most often have rubber soles to protect our feet from the rough floor!
Alongside this, Peter had arranged for each child to visit ‘the light garden’ which tied in to our seasonal change learning; the children visited all four seasons through an enlightening, interactive light experience. We rubbed away the snow from winter into spring, watched flowers bloom during summer and, finally, watched the lights dim and greens turn to orange as we transitioned into Autumn.
Keeping it local
Do you recognise these Ashford features? The year one children sure do! During our local Willesborough Walk, the children visited each of these local landmarks and identified them as a ‘human feature’ or a ‘physical feature’. We were very lucky with the weather; the sun shone beautifully all morning and the children made connections between the cold temperature and our current season of winter.
An aspirational visit
Wow! We set the bar high during our ‘Aspirational Week’. Darran Challis is a professional athlete and an Invictus Games Competitor who competed at the 2016 Games in Cycling and Swimming. He has a passion for triathlons and his determination was infectious! Darran was injured whilst on duty in the Army and since then has endeavoured to tell others that there is nothing that can stop you from achieving your dreams! The children were in awe of Darran and they were all very inspired by his message. Year one enjoyed competing in athletic training circuits and energetically completed burpees, press ups and balances that tested their balance and strength.
Term 4 Topic Plan for Parents
Let’s go, fly a kite…
Year One tested and evaluated a wide range of materials to consider which material would be best for a kite. We gave each material a rating, considering the weight, strength and wind resistance of each. After choosing our material, we chose which frame type we would use and created our kites, following our design very carefully.
“The cardboard would be no good as it’s quite heavy compared to the tissue paper…” Bethany, Koalas.
“I think that the tissue paper might be too delicate. It could rip in strong wind! I’m going to choose a plastic bag because it’s stronger.” Victoria, Kangaroos.
“I’m going to use a cross frame for my kite because it looks sturdy.” Esme, Koalas.
We then evaluated our kites, considering what we would do to make them even better next time.
Home Learning Challenges
Learning packs for each year group.
The Artful Parent
Good, free crafts for children.
The Imagination Tree
Creative art and craft activities for the very youngest.
Educational online games.
This is more for printouts, and usually at a fee, but they are offering a month of free access to parents in the event of school closures.
You can access English resources such as tricky word mats, letter formation sheets and jolly phonics sounds mats on the school's website. Link below.
You can read a range of free, Oxford Reading Tree texts via the Oxford Owl website. It is free to subscribe!
Keep up to date with your phonics knowledge by accessing a range of online games on phonics play. There is free access to all games using; username: march20 password: home
For a fun, interactive 100 square, use;
Here is a power point you may like to share with your child. It will help them to understand what Covid - 19 is and help them with their worries. Click below