Welcome to Swallow Class! Autumn Term 2017
The children have made a great start to the new school year! We have been getting used to the new routines in Year 2 and working very hard! Keep an eye out here for updates about what we have been learning in class.
For Swallow class, PE is on a Friday afternoon. We are also fortunate to have dance on a Wednesday afternoon, with Mrs Sparrey, for the first part of the term.
Reading books will be changed regularly; please listen to your children read every night, if possible. Please initial that your child has read and make a comment in their reading records.
If you have any questions and aren't able to see me in person, please feel free to use my email to get in touch.
Term 2 Weeks 3 and 4: Making Medieval Castles
For the past two weeks we have been making our own medieval castles, some in the style of a Motte and Bailey castle and others in the style of Keep and Bailey castles. We worked in partners and thought carefully about which materials would be good to use, along with discussing how we could change the shapes of materials by cutting, sticking, painting and adding different materials together. The final outcomes are magnificently medieval!
A Terrific Term 1
What a terrific first term we have had in Swallow class! I have thoroughly enjoyed working with each child and seeing the progress they have made so far. The children have worked super hard and we have had an enjoyable time learning all about 'Under the Sea'. It has been lovely to hear and see the children's enthusiasm towards our learning, by the care they have been taking in their work, along with the extra effort they have been making at home. I look forward to more exciting experiences with Swallow class after a well-deserved half term.
Term 1 Week 5: Super Science!
This week, Swallow class enjoyed some super science learning! Miss McPhail was very sad to miss out but the children took part in an exciting experiment, which involved discovering which objects float and which objects sink in water. Swallow class learned some new scientific language which they applied to their experiment, by creating a table and adding objects under two sections: 'less dense' and 'more dense'. After putting a variety of objects into water, Swallow class identified which were less dense and therefore floated, along with which objects were more dense, resulting in them sinking. The children also discussed the 'force' of the water on objects. One discovery was that conkers and wood were less dense than plasticine and shells!
Rainbow Fish to the Rescue! Role play for writing.
This week we have been looking at the story: Rainbow Fish to the Rescue! which relates to our 'Under the Sea' learning topic. We started by focusing on the characters and thinking of amazing adjectives to describe their appearances and personalities. Then we thought about the story plot and how we could change it to make our own adventure. We explored ways of doing this through role play; the children created some interesting new adventures! Our next step is to turn our role play adventures into written stories.
Goodbye and Good Luck!
It has been a fabulous year, Miss McPhail is so proud of all you have achieved. Have a wonderful summer and good luck in your new schools!
Drawing from Nature
Swallow class took great care to produce observational drawings of nature objects for Art. We started with a discussion on how to observe objects closely and focus on the shapes, lines, patterns and colour shades. Afterwards, the children chose from a variety of nature objects to draw and their outcomes were beautiful!
Welcome back to the Summer term!
We have lots of exciting lessons planned and look forward to our final term in Year 2.
Fabulous Term 5
Swallow have completed another term of brilliant work involving growing plants, exploring the outdoors and completing their SATs. Miss McPhail is incredibly proud of each and every child for becoming the best that they can be.
Wishing everyone and their families a magnificent May half term!
This week the children have reflected on each of our values and how we can continue to show them in our daily lives. Swallow class thought of some lovely ways to show tolerance to others. The class discussed how this links to respect and acceptance of everyone's differences, along with why these differences should in fact be celebrated. All of Year 2 watched a clip inspired by the quote 'A weed is but an unloved flower', by Ella Wheeler Wilcox. The children thought about the link to the value of tolerance and how we should let this 'blossom'.
Wonderful Writing in The Great Outdoors
This week, Swallow class have been doing lots of lovely writing about The Great Outdoors. The children have described in super detail where they would go on an ideal school trip, as well as using their imaginations to create and describe their own creature. Swallow class were inspired to do this after reading The Gruffalo and by going on a walk through the playground, to imagine bumping into their own creatures. To bring the children's writing to life, Swallow class completed their writing in the story area outside. Miss McPhail has been very impressed with their ideas!
Making Maps of the World
Swallow class have enjoyed starting to learn about our new topic this week, 'The Great Outdoors'. For our first Geography lesson, we were looking at a map of the world and identifying the seven continents, five oceans, the equator and other features. The children tried super hard to work together, in order to make their own maps of the world, using these features.
Have an Eggscellent Easter!
Year 2 have worked eggstremely hard this term; Miss McPhail and Mrs Lindsay are so proud of them. We hope everyone has a well deserved break including lots of relaxation, chocolate-eating, fun and some reading! We look forward to seeing you again for a super summer term.
British Science Week
Year 2 had a super time acting as Scientists by conducting a variety of experiments! These included making rainbow colours, blowing up balloons with lemonade and popping candy, making slime and mixing different ingredients to discover what happens next! The children had a fantastic time and also enjoyed a visit from an Oceanographer.
Since then, Year 2 have also been on a minibeast hunt to discover which creatures live within our school grounds. Can you find any minibeasts in your garden or local area? We would love to hear about your discoveries!
The children had a wonderful time experiencing Indian activities, which included:
A big thank you to Susmita for bringing our topic to light.
This week for our topic lesson we have made collage elephants. Swallow class painted their elephants grey and decorated them using a variety of materials and their imagination. They look amazing!
World Book Day 2017
What a wonderful World Book Day in Swallow class!
The children made a great effort with their costumes and bringing in their favourite books to share.
We had a fun filled day, which included a story from another teacher, DEAR (Drop Everything And Read), as well as lots of book-related discussion.
Year 2 had a visitor from Engage Esafety this week, to talk about how to stay safe when using the internet. We watched videos, listened to stories and took part in discussions. We then designed posters to remind us of how we can stay safe online.
In maths we have been learning all about 2D and 3D shapes. We have been on shape hunts all around the school to discover which shapes and objects we can find. The children have solved problems in relation to shape, such as seeing which shapes they can make with their bodies and if it is possible to make 3D shapes with straws.
We talked about the properties of these shapes using key maths vocabulary:
Halfway through Year 2!
Another busy term in Swallow class. From exploring Indian folktales, to finding out about the vast country that is India and comparing it to life in Wallingford.
The children have worked extremely hard and we are very proud of them.
Following on from Money in Maths, over half term, encourage your child to use some money to buy items from a shop. Can they work out the change they will receive? We would be very interested to hear of your shopping experiences!
Have a wonderful half term.
Brilliant Bollywood dancing!
WOW! Swallow class have been brilliant at choreographing their own Bollywood moves! Mrs Sparrey has taught us some particular techniques for this style of dancing, as well as giving us the freedom to create our own. Our finished pieces are spectacular! All the teachers have been extremely impressed with each child's effort and super teamwork overall.
I have videos of the class performing their brilliant dances; please ask me if you would like to watch them!
Drama in English
This week we have been reading a folk tale from Bengal 'Jamil's Clever Cat'. We focused on the characters in the story and used lots of amazing adjectives to describe how they look and what their personalities are like. The princess in the story had a decision to make so we took part in a drama activity called 'Decision Alley' where we had to think about what the princess might do and justify our thoughts.
We videoed the activity, unfortunately it's too big to post onto the class page but if you want to watch it please come and see me and I'll be happy to share it with you.
Money, Money, Money!
In Maths lessons this week we have been working with money, recognising all the different coins and working out which coins we can use to make various amounts.
Year 2 have been using the 'St Nicholas Shop' to buy items, by working out the total cost and finding the correct coins to pay with!
Explore money at home by setting up a shop and working out which coins you need to pay for the items or explore the website below for some fun interactive games.
Making Physical Maps of India
In Topic, we looked at the physical geographical features of India and discovered that this vast country has three very different climates from the cold Himalayas in the north, to the hot Thar desert in the centre, moving down to the south where it is hot and humid.
The children used a range of materials including tissue paper, sand, tea leaves and wool to create a physical map showing all the features and completed the maps with a key to identify the different areas.
Swallow class have turned into 'maths-magicians' this term already! We have been learning about multiplication and division, using new methods and resources to solve problems. For division, we have been sharing numbers equally into groups. To help with this tricky task, we have been using pasta, multilink, interactive resources and even some Smarties!
Can you find any useful objects at home to share equally into groups?
Role Play for The Raja's Big Ears
This week in English, we have been reading a story from another culture, called 'The Raja's Big Ears'. The story is set in India which links in with our new topic. We have been focusing on the characters, the setting and the story sequence. To bring these parts together, we created our own role play scenarios of the story, by thinking about character's perspectives and 'what happens next'. We had great fun making 'freeze frames' in groups to show the character's reactions!
Changing Everyday Materials in Science
We have been exploring 'everyday' materials, which has involved learning of ways to manipulate these objects. We thought back to last term and used our fine motor skills to bend, squash, stretch and twist a variety of objects. Through this, we discovered that some materials can be completely changed, others can be partially changed but a few materials cannot be changed at all!
Can you find any objects at home to try to bend, squash, stretch or twist? Did it work? We would love to hear all about your experiments!
A Tremendous Term 2
What a wonderful term it has been for Swallow class! From a trip to Warwick Castle, exploring the school grounds, writing Autumn poems using our senses, to performing a Nativity production.
We have thoroughly enjoyed our learning this term. A huge thank you to all the children for working so hard and for being the best that they can be.
We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, enjoy spending time together over the festive period!
Super Smartie Maths
For the past two weeks, we have been focusing on statistic in maths, by interpreting and constructing a variety of pictograms, tally charts, block diagrams and simple tables. From this, we have been able to ask and answer questions about the data by counting, sorting and comparing objects.
This week, we have used Smarties to collect and present our data. This involved working in pairs to sort the Smarties into different colours, creating a tally chart, making a block diagram and answering questions about the most and least frequent Smartie colours in our packs.
We have had a fantastic time learning - it was even suggested that this particular lesson was our 'best one ever' (we did get to eat the Smarties at the end!).
Travelling back in time for a Medieval Banquet
Year 2 children enjoyed travelling back in time for a medieval banquet. It was lovely to see lots of knights, lords, ladies, jesters, kings and princesses attend. Our fabulous feast and medieval dancing was spectacular!
A huge big thank you to all the parents and grandparents who attended, it was a memorable occasion and we appreciate your support.
English: an Autumn walk for poetry.
In English this week we have been looking at poetry. We have been learning about acrostic poems and decided to write our own, based on Autumn. To develop our ideas, Year 2 went on an Autumn walk around the playground with a particular focus on the human senses of see, hear, touch and smell. We made notes as we went along, to help with our planning. The next lesson, we used our ideas along with lots of class discussion, to create our own Autumn acrostic poems. They are fantastic!
Topic: watercolour paintings of castles.
In Topic this week we have been painting pictures of castles in the style of a Scottish painter called James Paterson. Firstly, we sketched light pencil outlines, then we painted using watercolours. We combined colours together to try to make different shades and tones.
This week in Maths, we have been looking at 'Measurement'. We have been measuring the length and weight of different objects. We have been estimating and measuring length and mass in cm, m, g and kg. To discover how accurate our estimates were, we used rulers, measuring tapes and metre sticks. As well as this, we have been predicting if particular objects were lighter or heavier than 1kg, before using a variety of scales to find out.
Why don't you do some measuring at home, which book is the longest, who has the longest feet in your family?
Can you make a cake and weigh out all the ingredients?
In English, we are learning to write for different purposes. This week, we have been writing recounts about our trip to Warwick Castle, using interesting time connectives and super adjectives. We have also been very honoured to have Tiarose in our class, who has been our special reporter. Tiarose has been interviewing some of us about our trip in order to make a newspaper report!
We had a fantastic visit to Warwick Castle. Behaviour was impeccable and the children loved exploring and discovering what a castle is really like! They especially enjoyed climbing up the ramparts into the tower; we went right to the top! A huge thank you to all helpers whose assistance was invaluable and to all parents for agreeing to the trip, it was an unforgettable experience.
We managed to take a lovely class photo, including a peacock who wanted to join in at the last minute!
Find our slideshow of more pictures below.
This week we have been thinking about living and non-living things. We went to the playground to see how many living and non-living things we could find and we discussed how we could tell, by using MRS GREN:
A Terrific Term 1!
Swallow class have had a terrific start to Year 2. We have settled well as a class and we are really enjoying our learning. We are becoming Super Scientists, Amazing Authors and Maths-Magicians!
Our 'Castles' topic has been extremely interesting and we are very excited to visit Warwick castle after half term, on Friday 4th November.
After half term, we will be continuing our work on addition and subtraction in Maths. In English, we will be writing for different purposes. Our Science learning will focus on 'Living things and their habitats'. Our 'Castles' topic will continue with more of a focus on Art and Design & Technology.
Any reading over half term would be fantastic!
Using Role Play to retell the story of Jack and the Beanstalk.
In English, we have been learning about fiction texts by looking at traditional tales. This week, we have been focusing on Jack and the Beanstalk and on Tuesday, we worked in groups to act out the story using role play. Through teamwork, we were able to split the story into three main parts (beginning, middle and end) and act it out in front of the class. We are fantastic at role play in Swallow!
This week we brought our Science learning together to make the 'perfect' nappy!
First of all, we looked at real nappies and took them apart to discover which materials were used. Then, we discussed what makes the perfect nappy:
Then, we worked in groups to create the nappies. We had a range of materials we were familiar with to choose from. When the nappies were complete, we tested them by pouring a bit of water on top! Some were very successful!
School Council Elections
Friday 7th October: Today we voted to elect our school councillors for the class. We took this very seriously and set up voting booths and a ballot box to keep our votes confidential. The new school councillors will be announced on Monday!
Aspiring Authors! Writing Non-Fiction books all about 'Castles'
Over the past few weeks we have been learning all about Non-Fiction books. We have been looking at the features of information texts and finding out what we can use them for. After conducting lots of research, we started to create our own Non-Fiction books, linked to our topic of 'Castles'. We have found out lots of interesting facts and our books are now complete!
Our Harvest Poem
We have been practising our Harvest poem for the assembly on Friday 7th October 2016. It would be great if children could keep practising at home over the weekend. We also have some actions to go along with our poem - a big smiley face for children who can remember these!
In Science we are learning about different materials. We have:
We have had a great time learning new things about materials, through our own investigations.
We are currently learning about place value with a particular focus on two-digit numbers.
Any practise of times tables and identifying the 'tens' and 'ones' digits would be beneficial to our learning.
In English we are learning about non-fiction texts and their features.
Choose a book. How many features can you find?
Term 6 Topic: 'Ahoy there, Me Hearties!'
With a title chosen by Daisy, we are excited to announce our new topic for this term! We reviewed what we have learned so far, in terms of the National Curriculum, and which aspects we still have to cover. There was quite a mixture of aspects of different subjects, but we've found a way to keep it all together under this seafaring title!
In English, we will look at pirate stories, poetry and non-fiction and use word-processing and multi-media to present our work digitally. Learning in Maths will cover a range of objectives including money, shapes, directions and simple statistics.
We will then study the different ports, harbours and seas around the UK and famous people and events such as Christopher Columbus, The Spanish Armada and The Battle of Trafalgar. This will lead nicely into identifying some of the similarities and differences between ways of life (living and travelling at sea) in different periods.
In Science, we will look at where 'treasure' comes from and the uses of metals and rocks, as well as having a go at making our own mini boats. Using our imaginations, we will consolidate learning about maps and create our own treasure maps. In Art and design, we will look at making ship figureheads from clay and study the work of the famous sculptor, Henry Moore. We can't wait to get started!
Fantastic new resource!
Blending letter sounds to read new words has never been such fun! We all loved working in pairs on our brand new ipads to complete a phonics game at various stages of difficulty. Thank you to FONS for this inspiring resource which we can use in so many different ways to enhance learning.
Term 5: Sweets and Treats
We have been loving the story of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory; comparing the settings and characters and designing our own sweets over the Bank Holiday Monday. Thank you to all the parents who helped with this labour-intensive task. We will be cooking in School soon too!
Fantastic new resource!
We've really enjoyed exploring our new class set of 'Numicon' - brightly-coloured plastic-shaped flats with different numbers of holes. Already, it has helped us grasp a deeper understanding of relationships, such as odds and evens, as well as how different numbers can be made up of different components.
Term 3 'Wriggle, Rattle and Roar'!
Swallow Class started the new term with enthusiasm, having chosen to study animals around the world as our topic: ‘Wriggle, Rattle and Roar’.
Joshua’s Daddy kindly brought in their pet dog, Coco – a ‘Pomchi’, which is a breed combining characteristics of a Pomeranian and a Chihuahua. We loved watching her and finding out how Joshua and his family care for her. Even children with a particular fear of dogs felt brave enough to give her a stroke! Thank you Joshua and your family. Coco has stolen our hearts!