Heathrow Primary School, Harmondsworth Lane, Sipson, West Drayton, Middlesex, UB7 0JQ
Our focus this half term has been ensuring the children have had a smooth transition into their new Reception classes. We have provided opportunities for the children to develop their speaking and listening skills through a range of engaging carpet sessions focused on a number of topics. The children are beginning to understand the importance of listening carefully to others and waiting for their turn in a conversation.
The children have a good awareness of our school rules and classroom routines and demonstrate this during the school day. We are teaching them the importance of respecting school resources and the need to tidy up after themselves. Friendship groups are beginning to form and we are supporting the children with strategies they can use to solve minor conflicts with others. The children are reminded of the need to respect the thoughts and feelings of others and are confident to share their emotions and ideas in the classroom.
The children have developed their fine motor skills through both table top activities and adult led tasks. Weekly fine motor sessions are planned in to support the children’s pencil and scissor skills. We have already begun to see an increase in the children’s control when using cutting and mark making tools. Our outdoor area is a space in which the children can develop their gross motor skills. Through using the large obstacle equipment, large building blocks and balance beams the children have improved their spatial awareness and movement. The children thoroughly enjoy their weekly PE sessions with Miss Torr.
In Reception we focus on fostering a love of reading within the classroom. Our weekly planning always centers around a text to encourage imagination and create strong cross curricular links in all areas of learning. Some of the children’s favourite texts from this term have included ‘So Much’ by Trish Cook and 'Cake' by Sue Hendra. The children have enjoyed choosing a Library book each week that they are able to enjoy at home with their families. At the center of our Literacy learning is phonics. The children are becoming familiar with the Read, Write, Inc programme and have learnt the majority of the single letter sounds. They have been able to apply this phonic knowledge when completing activities within the classroom and can be overheard reciting the formation rhymes such ‘Maisie, Mountain, Mountain’ when writing.
Our focus this term has been ‘Number’. Initial baseline assessments set clear starting points for each child’s learning. We have been developing the children’s counting skills with a number of engaging classroom activities and carpet sessions. We have used concrete resources such as bears, cubes and counters to support the children’s understanding of numbers and how to represent them. Mathematical vocabulary is promoted throughout every lesson and recently we have learnt the terms ‘more’ and ‘less’ with corresponding hand gestures.
When reading the book ‘Don’t Hog the Hedge’ which focuses on Autumn activities, the children used conkers, leaves and acorns to create their own repeating patterns. They were then able to take this newly taught skill and create patterns in the classroom using a number of different resources. For those that came to our ‘Maths Workshop’ you will have seen photographs of our Maths areas within the classroom and outdoor space. By providing the children with a range of open ended Maths resources, we are allowing them the opportunity to explore numerous concepts within their play. Weekly challenges are set within these areas to develop the children’s reasoning and problem solving skills.
Autumn has been our key focus this half term. We have encouraged the children to observe the seasonal changes happening around them and supported them with recording these changes both verbally and through classroom activities. These activities have included making hand print hedgehogs when learning about hibernation, talking about the colour changes of leaves and making pictures using natural resources.
The children have applied a range of different skills when taking part in activities on the creative table. They have practised printing, collaging and weaving. The children created hedgehogs using autumnal colours which are displayed in the classrooms. They worked in small groups to create box construction houses. This was a link to our focus story 'In Every House, on Every Street' by Jess Hitchmann.