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13th October 2017

It has seemed like a really busy but lovely week with parent’s evenings, Harvest and Cinema Night. I have been out on a couple of courses and so Mr Bennet has taught Year One for an extra day. Harvest was wonderful and the children sang beautifully, they all seemed so grown up and impressed me with their behaviour.

Sorry for the long blog, however, I wanted to address questions which were raised at parents evening.

Parents evening: It was so lovely to meet and talk to you all this week. I hope you know that if you have any worries, concerns or question I am available to hopefully sort them out and put your mind at rest! I understand some children do not give much away about their day to day life at school and this can be frustrating. Hopefully the blog helps. Talking to parents brought some common themes which I will try and clarify:

Water: We actively encourage all children to drink water and have regular water breaks. We have talked about the brain being like a sponge and it needs to be hydrated to work well and that the human body is made of up to 90% water. We will have a big push on this and keep encouraging the children to drink enough.

Books: Guided reading books; your child will bring home one or two guided reading books a week to either finish at home or re-read and share with you. The Bug Club books have a brilliant page inside the front cover with the focus sounds in the book and the tricky words, so it is well worth spending some time on this page. Home readers; we are happy for the children to change these wherever they have finished the books they read, we actively encourage the children to change their books on the days they do guided reading with an adult in the class (which is three times a week). Library books; normally with a silver hologram sticker on the spine and the library label inside. These are probably above their reading level, so are to be shared. These get changed every two weeks.

Team points and DoJo’s: Some parents were asking about these! DoJo’s are on the interactive white board and are given for good behaviour, sitting quietly, participating, super effort etc. We have a DoJo reward chart so collecting 5 DoJo’s is a sticker, 10 is a colouring sheet, and so on if they collect over 20 they can change their DoJo avatar! Team points are given for class and home work; each week the children get 1 team point for reading 5 times a week at home, 1 for their phonics, 1 for their maths. We record these each week on a class list then transfer them to the children’s individual cards. The children then put the points they earn into their house boxes, Breadon, Clent, Lickey, Malvern. The children also get team points for class work where they have made amazing effort. The team points are collected and counted by children in Year 4. These points are added and contribute to which house has won the team cup which is awarded in celebration assembly. The children’s individual totals go to team point awards which are little credit card type cards which are also given out in celebration assembly on a Friday. These awards start with bronze, and progress through silver and gold to platinum. To earn each award you have to get a set number of team points, so bronze is the easiest to get with 20 team points then silver is 40 team points and so on. 

Phonics play: A website I mentioned to some parents at parents evening which we use in school and the children love is  It has a number of free games which the children can play and it really helps with their blending of sounds. We are on phase 3 sounds, you can pick a sound if your child needs extra support or just use all phase 3 sounds.

Maths: We have continued working on our number bonds and have used the number bonds to find the missing numbers so if we know the total number of apples is 7 and there are 3 on one plate then the other plate must have 4 apples on it.

English: Captain Blackbeard sent us another message in the bottle. As he didn’t go to Tardebigge First School he can’t actually write! Therefore, he sends us pictures and we have to do the writing for him! He sent us pictures of all the things that a bad pirate takes or steals and we discussed pirate punishments. The children wrote some fantastic sentences starting, “A bad pirate . . . . “ When marking their work we identify two words for them to correct which we write on yellow paper (our golden words). They practice writing and spelling these words and then edit their work with pink pens to correct any mistakes.

RE: The children examined the way Christians show love to God and painted pictures to represent these ideas. They also reflected on our Harvest Service and we talked about how lucky we are that we have food, water, shelter, warm cosy beds and mummies and daddies who love us. Many of the children wrote about loving the song that Year 4 sang (Let it Grow) best of all!

Have a super weekend, enjoy the forecasted good weather!

Sara Welsh

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