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Catherington

Church of England Infant School

Learning together for tomorrow’s world

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Spring 1 2024

Happy New Year!

Week 1

English - The true story of the 3 little pigs.

The children started the new year by walking into a crime scene. Police had taped off our back door and had taken some photos of an un-yet disclosed crime. Through looking at the photographic evidence the children very quickly worked out that they all had a link - the 3 little pigs. After retelling the traditional tale, the children were then introduced to our new focus story - "the true story of the 3 little pigs". The children looked at all of the similarities and differences between the two books and created a vast vocabulary wall of adjectives to describe the traditional "big bad wolf" and Alexander T Wolf in the "true story".

Maths - problem solving

After recapping addition and subtraction, we finished the week by focussing on the process of problem solving and developing our skills. We learnt that there is a four step process linked with problem solving - understand the problem, plan how you are going to try to solve the problem, try out your plan, and then check you have solved the problem. The children were set the problem of only using single digit cards to work out what two numbers could be combined to create a two digit number that is in the 5 and then the 2 times tables.

PE - Pathways and dribbling

This week we started our new gymnastics and games topics. On Wednesday we started to investigate creating pathways and different ways we could travel to and from different points whilst showing spatial awareness and avoiding others both on the floor and using apparatus. On Friday we continued to develop our ball skills by developing dribbling through using our hands and our feet before moving on to sending a ball with control through a hoop and through a goal.

Week 2

DT - Healthy eating

This week we started our new DT project which posed the problem of what food could we make to eat as part of a celebratory picnic to commemorate healthy eating week. To start off the children looked at different types of food and drink and were set the challenge as a class to sort them into "healthy" and "non - healthy" this proved more challenging that first thought and led to a creation of a middle area where some food was partially healthy and parts weren't. This led to a really good discussion about what is in our food - protein, vitamins, sugars / natural sugars, fats, and how much of different types of food we should eat.

English - features of persuasion and contractions

In preparation for the children to write their own persuasive letters to the piggy guards, we explored the key features of what makes a persuasive letter persuasive. The children were given examples of persuasive letters and had the challenge of recognising and identifying as many different features they could find. We then developed our knowledge of apostrophes by looking at how they can be used to make contractions. The children showed good understanding of this when they helped Miss Adams match contracted forms of non contracted words and then using them in their own sentences.

Maths - adding and subtracting with bridging

This week the children continued to develop their knowledge and understanding of bridging through solving sums and words problems. The children were able to identify how important their place value knowledge is alongside their knowledge of number bonds to 10 to aid their bridging.

 

Science - Animal and human lifecycles

This week we started our new science topic on lifecycles. The children were asked the question - "what doe it mean to be born?" which led to some good discussions about how animals are born and how many offspring can be born at one time. In groups the children looked at different animals, including humans, and were set the task of sorting the animals and their offspring by type, e.g mammal, birds, reptiles etc. They were then asked to sort the animals into two groups - animals that give birth to live young and animals that are hatched from eggs. This enabled children to see patterns and understand that certain types of animal give birth to live young whilst others lay eggs.

Week 3

DT - Processing food

This week to develop our understanding of food technology we focussed on the importance of health and safety when using and processing food. The children were very knowledgeable about the importance of washing their hands and wearing an apron and making sure the food was washed before used. We then focussed on how we can process food in different ways such as grating, squeezing and cutting. When cutting the children got to practise using safe knife cutting techniques such as: "the bridge", "the claw", and "the fork technique" to help them stay safe when using a knife.

Science - At what age do we stop growing?

This was the question the children explored in this weeks lesson. It led to some very interesting discussions about age and height and allowed us to deal with the misconception that the taller you are the older you must be. The children measured each other and predicted at what age they would be fully grown which then led us to think about why and when we stop growing.

Geography - Where in the world?

This week we used Google Earth and a globe to take us from Catherington and zoom out past Portsmouth and the United Kingdom to look at the world whilst recapping our previously learnt knowledge about these areas. From space we were able to locate and identify the two polar caps, the equator and through using these locate where in the world the Antarctic desert and Sahara desert were in relation to each other, the world and us. Once the children had independently located the deserts we then started to think about what it might be like to be in them and focussed on their temperatures. The children went outside onto the playground and very quickly agreed that 2 degrees was rather chilly but nothing in comparison to the -86 degrees in Antarctica. When back in the warmth of the classroom at a much more comfortable temperature of 17 degrees they then thought about how uncomfortable 56 degrees would be in the Sahara desert.

Computing - Creating music

This week in music we explored how ICT could be used to turn pictures and squiggles into musical compositions. To start off with, the children listened to Gustav Holst's Neptune and drew what the music made them think of and feel. We then used Chrome music lab to explore how the position of shapes and patterns could be turned into different notes and instruments and arranged to create a repeating rhythm. The children developed their knowledge of pitch by discovering that where they positioned their markings effected the pitch of the musical note created. 

Week 4

English - Persuasive letters

At the start of this week in English we focussed on prosody when we rehearsed reading our letters as if we were talking to Alexander T Wolf or on of the piggy guards. The children tried to focus on their excellent use of vocabulary to really enhance their persuasion. Some children thought Alexander T wolf should stay in jail whilst others felt he had been set up and should be released. As you can see below they did an amazing job. So good in fact that we received a letter from Alexander T Wolf, thanking us for our letters and letting us know that because of us being so persuasive he had been released from jail and wanted to share another story that showed us that pigs can be bad too - it was called "The 3 little wolves and the big bad pig".  

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Maths - Mass

This week in maths the children have been developing their knowledge of measurement by focussing on measuring mass using the standard units of grams and kilograms. The children practically estimated, measured and ordered different items by their mass and also developed their understanding of reading scales by working out what different items weighed.

PE - Gymnastics - rolling

This week the children continued to develop their knowledge of pathways by exploring how levels and directions can be changed through rolling. The children practised different rolling techniques including log rolls, forward rolls, and teddy bear rolls.

DT - Food tasting - likes and dislikes

In preparation for our healthy picnic, the children taste tested different fruit and vegetable combinations and recording what they liked and disliked. This then enabled the class to make up their minds about what they want to make for their picnic food next week.

Computing - Using ICT to create music for an effect.

This week the children used the song maker programme in Chrome music lab to learn and explore how changing different musical instruments and tempo can be modified to create a musical rhythmic pattern that represents different animals moving.

Week 5

Police visit

On Monday we were very lucky to be visited by the police who came and spoke to us and answered questions about what the police do and how they help and keep us safe. They showed and demonstrated some of the different equipment they use and carry upon themselves before taking us out and allowing us to sit in their police car and learn how the sirens and lights work. 

Maths - Recognising and identifying 2D and 3D shapes

This week in maths we focussed on developing our geometry knowledge. The children recalled different names of different 2D and 3D shapes they could remember and developed understanding the different properties these shapes have. The children were set the challenge of sorting a selection of 2D and 3D shapes according to their own criteria. This really helped the children show their understanding of the difference between 2D shapes with corners and sides and 3D shapes with faces, edges, and vertices. The children then went out around the school on a shape hunt to identify different shapes they could find and describe how they knew they were those shapes by describing the properties.

Science-Do larger animals have longer lives?

This was the question our children explored today and led to some really detailed discussions about the difference between wild and cared for animals, food chains and pets. The children were given a selection of animals and  lifespan ranges and had the challenge of matching them up and putting them in order from shortest to longest. This was then made trickier when we linked our geography topic of deserts by adding a selection of desert animals and their British equivalents. This then made us consider habitats and endangered animals when sorting the pictures. 

Christingle

On Thursday, we held our Christingle service at All Saints Church. Before we met Reverend Amanda we explored the different elements that make up the Christingle candle and made our own candles which we took to the church and lit in front of the rest of the school.

PE - Games - Controlled throwing and stick control

This week the children recapped on the skills they have learnt this half term of sending and receiving an object before moving on to extending their control by including the addition of unihoc sticks. The children practised moving around in a controlled manner with a ball before moving on to the different techniques of sending and receiving with a unihoc stick. 

DT - A healthy picnic

We had a lovely end to our week this week with a class picnic. Over the last couple of weeks the children have explored the importance of healthy eating, tried different different combinations of food and came up with their own menu for a healthy picnic. On Friday the children used the different food processing skills they have learnt to safely prepare food and make different fruit smoothies, fruit salads, fruit kebabs, pepper and cucumber wraps, and breadsticks and dip which they then enjoyed sharing.

Week 6 

RE - Remembering Vishnu

As it was our last week before half term, we focussed on our RE topic theme of remembering. At the start of the week we thought about and discussed different ways we remember people and then thought about whether or not it is important to remember them. This led us nicely into exploring the Hindu celebration of Holi. Holi is a Hindu festival that celebrates spring, love, and new life. The children learnt about the story of "Holika and Prahlad" where Lord Vishnu was remembered and helped good overcome evil. We then looked how many Hindu's have shrines in their homes and thanks to Miss Adams, we were able to create our own mini shrine and learn about the importance of all of the special objects that are used during worship at a shrine. 

Maths - Multiplication and arrays

This week in maths we have developed our understanding of multiplication as "groups of" by exploring, making, and drawing arrays. We have learnt that, like multiplication, arrays can be shown more than one way by looking at the groupings  as either columns or rows.

PE - Gymnastics - collaboration and cooperation

This week the children had to work together to bring everything they have worked on this half term all together. The children were set the challenge of using levels, different leads, spins, turns, and rolls to create a continuous mirror and reflection pathway routine which allowed each partner to take turns and become the leader and the copier.

PE - Games - Sending and receiving 

This week the children had the task of creating a range of games that showed of the various sending and receiving skills they have learnt this half term. The children partnered up and chose the different equipment they needed to create their games before partnering up with a different pairing and teaching each other their new games and playing them.

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