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Gosh, another busy week, one that saw Mrs Medlicott holding the fort Tuesday morning when I was off ill in bed! Luckily we swopped PPA and I only missed one morning of my lovely Year 1 class! We also managed to get through lots of work and the children have been busy!

Maths: We have finished our first chapter in our new Singapore Maths book – numbers to 40. We have continued working on numbers to 40 reading, writing, and making numbers. In Singapore maths we grouped the numbers into 10’s and counted them, we then counted the left over ones. You could practice this at home, making bundles of 10’s plus some ones. They count the 10’s first and then the remaining ones. 10, 20, 30, 31, 32, 33 etc. We have been comparing the smallest and greatest numbers as well as putting the numbers in order. We have begun looking at a given number, say, 27 and then working out 4 more and 4 less than this number. The children have really impressed me, when I think back to the start of the year we were doing the same activities with numbers to 10, then numbers to 20 and now to 40, it is amazing to see the progression.

Phonics: We have done lots of recapping and revising all the sounds and alternative sounds learnt. We have looked at split digraphs again and that the ‘e’ makes the vowel say its name. So pet becomes Pete and hat becomes hate, bit becomes bite. We have introduced some phonic carousel activities so we can target the digraphs and trigraphs that the children need to work on next.

English: We have begun looking at the book, ‘The Way Back Home’, by Oliver Jeffers. We have completed two pieces of writing linked to the start of the story. The first was to write a set of instructions for the boy to get ready to fly his plane and the second piece was their own ideas about what the boy could do next when he got stuck on the moon. The children are working really hard trying to remember capital letters, finger spaces, sweeps and flicks and full stops. They are thinking carefully about what they are writing and their own personal next step.

RE: We continued our topic “Why does Easter matter to Christians?” by posing this question to the children who recorded their ideas.

Have a lovely weekend.

Sara Welsh


British Science Week.

What a busy week, packed full of exploring, investigating, predicting, asking questions and testing out ideas. The children have enjoyed a whole range of science-based activities.

On Monday three scientists from the University of Birmingham came into school and helped us carry out, ‘seaweed slime’, an investigation using polymers. The children added alginate into calcium to create slime droplets or slime snakes. They were able to measure with a ruler who had created the longest snake. They had lab books to record all their findings.

We had Mrs Stables and Mrs Fryer in to demonstrate a full sized Hoverboard with the children. They got to experience first-hand how a Hoverboard works, before making their own individual Hoverboards using CD’s, bottle tops and balloons!

We have carried out several investigations in class including: What will happen to an apple when placed in different substances? We quartered the apple and placed a quarter in each of the following, water, air, oil and vinegar. The children made scientific predictions about what would happen to each quarter. The children also thought about what would happen if we placed daffodils in different coloured water? We were interested to see that our daffodil flowers remained yellow. This was a bit of a disappointment as they are meant to change colour! We investigated the shape of bubbles compared to the shape of the bubble blower. The children discovered that whatever the shape of the bubble blower the bubbles were always round. We asked, ‘Is it magnetic?’ and the children made predictions and then investigated to see if their predictions were correct.

We have also thought long and hard about the question, ‘What makes a scientist?’ We made a list of our ideas which we added to as the week has progressed.

Lots of science, lots of fun, we have also continued with, reading, maths, phonics, daily dashboard etc…

Have a wonderful weekend.

Sara Welsh


I don't know why this didn't load last week! It was lovely to see you again at parents evening and lovely to share the progress that your child is making. I am really pleased with the hard work and mindset of the year one class. If you were unable to attend we will catch up in the next couple of weeks.

Maths: We have completed our Singapore maths books. The last chapter was a review chapter, there were over 40 questions from all the work covered from September and they jumped around from addition, shape, position, subtraction to place value. The children were tackling them well and it showed a real understanding of the learning covered this year.

World book day: WOW the children looked absolutely amazing in their costumes and when we saw how fabulous they looked we scrapped our English planning took photos of them all to use as inspiration for writing! On world book day itself we stopped and read each time Miss Sutton blew the tenor horn. The children wrote alternative nursery rhymes, recited rhymes and worked in groups to act rhymes out. Rhyming is a really important aspect of language, if your child finds rhyming difficult please play games and recite rhymes to encourage them and help their development.

RE: We began our unit of “Why does Easter matter to Christians?”

I hope you have a very happy weekend. Look forward to seeing you next week for our for science week.

Sara Welsh


It was lovely to see all the children back at school after half term and to have such beautiful warm weather; it really felt like summer on Tuesday. The children got back into the swing of things very quickly and this week has flown by.

English: The children wrote an independent retell of their holiday news, and we also wrote thank you letters to the Mosque following our visit. We have continued re-capping the different digraphs which make the same sound, for example ow as in snow, oe as in tomatoes, oa as in goat and o-e as in phone. I have given the children a word and they have attempted spelling it with the different sounds. We thought about the general rules and tried to work out which spelling was correct, for example, the word play could be written – plai or play, but we know that the ‘ay’ normally comes at the end of the word and ‘ai’ comes in the middle.

Maths: We have continued working hard to complete our first Singapore maths book. We are on the revise and review chapters now.

Science: We were set a challenge to find the best material to make a star, we thought about what a star needs to be like, shiny and bright. We looked at 4 different materials and predicted which we thought was the brightest, shiniest material. We investigated light and dark using a peep box. We then tested all of our material using the peep box to see which material was the shiniest.

We had a lovely trip to Redditch Central Mosque the children were beautifully behaved and respectful. They asked thoughtful questions and I hope they got lots out of seeing another place of worship. The highlight seemed to be the chandelier in the upstairs prayer room and the wudu (wash rooms where they wash before prayer).

Have a lovely weekend.

Sara Welsh


Happy Half Term Everyone. I hope you are having a lovely break and enjoying the sunshine. Spring is nearly here!

Our last week before half term was a productive one, the children had fun whilst working hard.

English: The children wrote an independent re-tell of the Little Red Riding Hood story in their topic books. I have taken these books home to assess the children’s next steps. I was so impressed with their dedication and motivation to write along with all the skills they applied in their writing.

Maths: We have been working hard to complete our first Singapore maths book. We have been looking at the addition and subtraction facts to 20 and the fact family, so if you know 8+5=13 you could also know 13-8=5 and 5+8=13 and 13-5=8. We have worked on 2 dimensional and 3 dimensional shapes, recognising these shapes, looking at their properties and grouping shapes as well as making patterns and completed some work on length and height.

This week has been Online Safety Week so we enjoyed an assembly from our Digital Leaders and in our Computing lesson we created posters to raise awareness of how to stay safe online.

This half term has flown by. I can’t believe we are now half way through the children’s time in year 1. Enjoy the rest of your week and I look forward to seeing you all on Monday.

Sara Welsh


Yet again the children have impressed me this week with their hard work and enthusiasm. We had some visitors come to see us from another school and they were so impressed with the children’s behaviour and their work.

Art: We created planets and painted these using watercolours. The children’s paintings of their imaginary planets have been displayed in the corridor, so next time you are in school please take a look.

English: We looked at the front cover of the book, “Whatever Next”; the children wrote adjectives and expanded noun phrases to describe the pictures. They wrote some lovely phrases such as, “the inky blue sky.” My mum replied to a photo I’d sent her of our planet display, she asked the children what their planets were like. The children then responded with information about their planets, what they were like, who might live there, special equipment you would need if you went to visit their planet etc.

Maths: We completed our chapter on addition. We did some work to practice representing numbers in different ways on a part, part whole model, for example 10 might be divided into the parts 9 and 1 or 5 and 5. We have begun the chapter on subtraction and have taken away using a number line and by using the part, part whole model. We have had a number, such as 17, and then had to take away 4 (17-4=). With the part, part, whole method 17 is put as the whole number the two parts would be 10 and 7, then the 4 is taken away from the 7 before adding back the 10 part. I hope this makes sense it is hard to put it into words, if you are unclear come and see me and I will demonstrate this for you.

Phonics: In phonic lessons we have been working on the alternative sounds ir – as in bird, first and swirl, er as in tiger, better and other and ur as in turtle, nurse and burn. Again we looked at the position of the sound in the word.

RE: Miss Khan taught a lesson on a Muslim’s sacred place. We role played going into the Mosque and discussed the things that we might see; and what were the importance of these items to a Muslim. The children enjoyed examining the prayer mat and trying on a hijab and the hat. They had lots of very thoughtful questions which Miss Khan answered. We are looking forward to going to a real Mosque and seeing what that is like.

Topic: We looked at Neil Armstrong’s life and recorded some of the main events on a story map, for example, Thomas wrote “He flew planes for the navy” alongside his picture of the US badge, then he drew the rocket blasting off from earth, then when when the rocket went out into space and then landed. Then finally he drew Neil dancing on the moon with Neil saying “Hipperty Hop.”

Next week is the last week before half term, I’m sure it will be a fantastic one. Have a lovely weekend. See you Monday.

Sara Welsh


We have had a lovely week and the children have worked hard. We thought we might have had a snow day on Friday but we enjoyed our bonus time together instead!

English: On their design sheet children had made three different designs for alien underpants. They picked their favourite design and re-created it in bigger, better, bolder detail and finally added labels. They then wrote about them with the starting sentence, ‘My alien pants are…’ .

Maths: We added a one digit numbers to teen numbers. We partitioned the teen number into the 10’s and 1’s and then added the ones together and added this onto the ten. The children could again do the maths but found the recording of the part, part whole, tricky. We will do more work on this next week before moving on to subtraction.

Phonics: I have completed assessing the children in a practice screening check. They all did well and showed a super effort even if they did find some words tricky to sound and build. Some children need to be encouraged to identify the diagraph, trigraph or split digraph in the word before attempting to sound it out. Also the more confident readers need to ensure they take the time to check and not just read what they think they see at a casual glance. This is especially true with the nonsense words. A number of children, for example, read night for nigh and strip for stripe. In phonic lessons we have been working on the alternative sounds oi’ – ‘oy as in joy, annoy and toy, and ‘ai’ - ‘ay’ for play, stay and away. We have looked which grapheme it tends to be depending on where the sound comes in the word. So ay is nearly always at the end of a word (except crayon) and ai is normally in the middle. We also recapped the split digraph a-e. Ask your child to show you the split digraph for Caveman Dave. If you want to see how a split digraph works google the Phonics Fairy Caveman Dave or click on the link

RE: The children thought about different Special and Sacred Places. We discussed what would make a place of worship special to a Christian and what would make a place of worship special to a Muslim. The children thought of questions to ask a believer about the place of worship that they go to. The children painted a Mosque and discussed how it might make a Muslim feel to be in the Mosque.

Hope you have a lovely weekend. Look forward to seeing you on Monday.

Sara Welsh


We’ve had a very busy couple of the weeks. All the year 1 staff are so impressed with the children’s attitude to their learning and behaviour. This week we had both the explorer dome and astronaut training, both of which were brilliant.

English: We have been busy doing lots of writing. We have (after requests from the children) focused on aliens. They wrote about the alien they had drawn and painted starting their sentence with, “My alien…” This writing was amazing, so we decided to display it, the children wrote it up in their best handwriting onto a balloon and we have displayed it in the classroom along with their alien paintings. They wrote a list of things they would take to space using their phonics and best handwriting, many mums and dads would be taken along with teddies, dogs, cats and some grandparents. We thought about what we would do if an alien came to visit and wrote about what would happen, we skipped past the stranger danger and decided it was a friendly alien!

Maths: Singapore maths has become a little tricky this week! We have been adding numbers to 20 and having to partition numbers. This was difficult for some of the children who find it easier to just add without the partitioning. However, when you look higher up the school you can really see the value of the children being able to partition and regroup their numbers when adding. It is a strategy many adults use without giving it a thought but teaching it has been hard work this week. If the children are adding 8 and 4 instead of counting on like we used to do they would now partition the 4 and add 2 to the 8 to make 10 then add the 2 to the ten to get 12. We recorded the partitioning in our part, part whole diagram. I think it is frustrating for those children who think they just know the answer, however, it will really benefit them in the long run and it does give a real number sense

Phonics: We have been focusing on split digraphs, (this used to be called magic ‘e’). We have talked about when the ‘e’ is added the vowel doesn’t say its sound which they have learnt but says its name. So pet becomes Pete, tub becomes tube, can becomes cane, with magic ‘e’ making the vowel say its name. We have looked at all 5 vowels and words associated with these. So a-e as in make, cake, shape, e-e as in Pete, theme, even, i-e inside, slide, prize, o-e as in home, phone, throne and u-e as in tube, huge, excuse. It is really important that the children are able to identify these in their reading.

RE: The children thought about different Special and Sacred Places, they talked about where they feel safe and places that are special to them. The children created their own picture of their special places using pastels, paints or felt tips.

Art: Children have looked closely at Vincent Van Gogh's Starry Night. They have developed their sketching and shading skills using pencil to recreate a small section of the picture they observed through a peep hole. They went on to attempt recreating the whole picture using pencil, focusing on shade, tone and line.

Have a super weekend.

Sara Welsh

11th January 2019

Happy New Year to you all.

I hope 2019 is an amazing year for each and everyone one of you. Can I start the blog by saying a really huge, “Thank You”, from all the staff who work in Year 1 for your really kind, thoughtful and generous gifts and kind words this Christmas. They were very much appreciated. It certainly sounds from what the children said that everyone had a lovely time. The children certainly did!

We have had a fun packed four days and worked incredibly hard, the children have come back refreshed and ready to learn.

On Thursday we discussed our holiday news and favourite presents, I am so glad that Father Christmas visited every child, I never had my doubts! The children wrote their Christmas holiday news in their new topic books which have whole pages of lines (no space for a picture!)

We had a very exciting alien encounter when we received a text that said that possible aliens had dropped evidence near Tardebigge First School. Sure enough when we went to investigate, we found pants which had been cordoned off! The children spotted many clues, the air smelt funny, they had heard a big crash, they saw shadows in the church! We went back into class and deduced that whatever else we knew we know that aliens obviously love pants! We designed different pants and picked our favourites. Some children painted what they thought an alien would look like. We finished the day reading aliens love underpants. We continued our alien work with the children writing questions that they would ask an alien. They had some wonderful ideas.

In maths we have started numbers to 20, in Singapore maths this involves having a full 10 frame and then counting on. We have been grouping ten and counting on to find how many objects there are. We have been writing the numerals 11-20 to match the digits or objects. We had a go at journaling showing our own representation of the number 14.

Have a lovely weekend, hope it is relaxing.

Sara Welsh

7th December 2018

Gosh, what a busy time we are having in Year 1! I realised although the blog was written last week (Mrs Medlicott wrote it) it never got posted – so sorry!

Year 1 and 2 had a brilliant time at the Sea Life Centre! The children were beautifully behaved and listened attentively throughout our tour. We loved Polar Express in the 4D cinema and all saw Father Christmas, who was kind enough to give me 60 gifts to give to the children for being so wonderful! We learnt lots of fascinating facts about the creatures we saw and our guide was impressed with the children’s knowledge. One of my highlights was the children belting out our Christmas songs whilst waiting for the bus to park, the people of Birmingham had a real treat hearing our Christmas songs sung with Tardebigge enthusiasm! 

In English we discussed our trip to the Sea Life Centre. We talked about the different things we had enjoyed and learned about during our visit and we then wrote a recount of our trip. We were very impressed with the children’s writing.  

In Maths we have had a go at journaling. Basically, demonstrating our knowledge and understanding. We asked the children to, ‘represent 7’, and they did an amazing job! They did pictures, wrote the word seven, some chose to write equations such as 4+3=7, 3+4=7, 7-4=3, etc. The children also begun work on ordinal numbers, first, second, third etc.

For the rest of the week the children have been creating their Christmas cards and Christmas decorations for the church's tree at Worcester Cathedral.

We took our rehearsals onto the stage in church on Tuesday and practiced again today, Miss Sutton altered the script for the final time at lunch and then this afternoon we made more changes! The children are absolutely amazing, and I think you are in for a treat on Thursday

Have a great weekend Year 1.

Mrs Welsh

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