February 22nd, 2017
Beech class has been really excited to begin our new topic for this term - Dinosaurs! We have already been learning how the dinosaurs are similar to reptiles that are alive today, and applying our knowledge to answer questions about the dinosaurs. We know that reptiles lay eggs, so we think that dinosaurs also laid eggs; we know that reptiles are cold-blooded, so we think that dinosaurs may also have been cold-blooded; we know that reptiles have small brains, so we think that dinosaurs also had small brains.
We are going to be doing some extra PE lessons on a Wednesday afternoon this term - we will be moving like a dinosaur and even doing some dinosaur dancing.
If you would like to see some dinosaur fossils, the Oxford University Museum of Natural History has an excellent display. The Oxfordshire Museum in Woodstock also has a great interactive dinosaur gallery and real dinosaur footprints for you to see how big they are - best of all, entry to both these museums is free!
World Book Day
This week we have celebrated World Book Day. As well as dressing up as characters from our favourite traditional tales, we spent some time thinking about how important the pictures are in books and visited the other classes to try to work out the story from the clues left behind. Beech class correctly guessed the story each time, but it was the crime scene left by Goldilocks in Hazel Class that prompted the most discussion.
We have also been persevering with our maths this week, continuing to look at subtraction from numbers between 11 and 20 by regrouping the large number into 10s and 1s first and then subtracting from the 10s. I have been impressed by the determination shown, as this has proved tricky but no-one has given up!
In science, we have continued to learn about animals. This week we have been grouping animals into families according to their characteristics. We have thought about mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians, birds and insects. We will be continuing this over the coming weeks, by learning about omnivores, carnivores and herbivores.
Finally, in our topic work, we have been continuing to learn about fossils and having a go at creating some of our own.
March 10th 2017
This week we have been measuring everything we can in Beech Class! We have thought about the vocabulary needed to describe the length or height of an object such as long, longer, longest and short, shorter, shortest; tall, taller, tallest and high, higher, highest. We have also ordered some dinosaur bones from longest to shortest (or shortest to longest) and had a go at measuring them in non-standard units - we used paperclips. We have thought about how the size of the unit of measurement matters, so a table can be 18 paperclips wide, but only 3 straws wide, for example, but it is still the same table.
In science we have been Dinosaur Dentists. We have been looking at how we can tell what an animal eats from the shape of its teeth. We have sorted pictures into herbivore and carnivore teeth, and been able to explain why we made those choices. We have thought about our own teeth and also had a go at making some teeth from clay.
This week we have been continuing to look at what animals eat in Science, and classifying them as carnivores, herbivores or omnivores. The children enjoyed some investigation in the lesson today as we examined "animal droppings" for clues to what the animal had eaten, and then tried to work out which group it would belong to. We talked about why we had to wear gloves and use a lollipop stick to examine the droppings and the children were reminded not to touch any real droppings they might see when outside. It was great to see how enthusiastic everyone was, and to hear the children talking to one another, discussing what they had had found and what that would mean in the context of their investigation.
We are also continuing to learn about figures of historical significance, and will be thinking about Mary Anning (the fossil hunter) in more detail. In Maths, we are continuing to think about measuring - we have been looking at what a unit of measurement is, and will also be measuring in centimetres.
Beech class produced some amazing writing about Mary Anning last week - there were 15 children that took their work to show Mrs Ashcroft as it was so fantastic! This week, the children have produced some more fantastic writing. We have made posters for an escaped dinosaur, and summarised our learning from the term. The whole class has really enjoyed this topic.
In Maths we have been looking at collecting, organising and interpreting data by using pictograms. This has also been a really popular topic, with children choosing to collect information on their own and make their own pictograms.
In Science we used our knowledge of dinosaurs to look at features on lizards, for example frills, horns and claws.
Year 1 and 2 had a change to the timetable today - instead of Maths, we had a visit from Oxfordshire Fire Service.
We were taught the importance of having smoke alarms in our houses, and knowing our address in case we have to call for help; the firemen were impressed that all of Beech class knew the number to call is 999. We learnt to "get out, stay out and call the fire brigade out" and why "stop, drop and roll" is the thing to do if your clothes catch fire. The firemen also told us a handy rhyme to remind us not to play with matches:
Matches, matches, never touch
They can hurt you very much.
The children then had the chance to look around the fire engine, and learn more about the equipment carried - it's not just for putting out fires! Each child also had the opportunity to sit in the back of the fire engine.
After lunch, the children had a go a making a job advert for a firefighter, trying to remember what jobs they did and what qualities would make a good fireman. They also made posters illustrating the safety rules they had been taught.
Everyone had a great time, learnt lots about what firefighters do and how to keep safe.