Welcome to our class page!
Fitetips are taught by Mrs Ralph, (Class Teacher), supported by Miss Claridge, (Teaching Assistant).
Things to remember:
Library day is on a MONDAY. Please ensure children bring in their books to change.
P.E is on a THURSDAY. Please ensure all children have weather appropriate clothing and footwear.
Tuesday 11th June- Class assembly
Friday 28th June- Sports day
Wednesday 17th July- Firetips music assembly
'Under the sea' - 14/06/2019
Welcome back to Summer term 2, where has this year gone? The children are going to be leaving Reception so soon. Last term the children expressed lots of interests in holidays, the seaside and the beach so this term we are learning all about that. We have our very own Firetips beach and beach cafe, please do pop in to see it if you haven't already. Last week we used the film, ' Finding Nemo' as a writing stimulus, which the children thoroughly enjoyed. They created missing posters with Nemo on and some even suggested putting them up in town in case anyone had seen him, very thoughtful, we also made thank you cards or a thank you letter for Dory for being a good friend to Marlin and helping him find Nemo. This well lent itself very well to PSED, so we made our own friendship posters and why our friends are good friends and we played many games promoting turn taking and listening to others. In maths we were looking at problem solving, using the '1 is a snail 10 is a crab' story as our main resource. (A great book to invest in to understand number).
We kick started this week off with a visit form a tortoise which was brilliant, the children loved stroking his shell and couldn't believe that he was 20 years old. We had our very first class assembly where all children spoke and sang brilliantly in front of lots of people, I was extremely impressed as I'm sure you all were. In literacy we have been exploring Pie Corbett's Talk for writing again to learn the story, 'The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch.' They have really enjoyed this story and particularly loved our drama session where we acted out the story in groups then performed them to each other. In maths we have been exploring the 2 times table in a very practical way, using numicon, pairing socks and using cubes. The children have done really well with this, you can continue this learning at home expressing that x2 means double as we need the amount two times.
As we are coming to the end of term it would be great to practice high frequency words at home as well as tricky words, as this will enhance the children's reading and writing in preparation for Year 1. If you need another handout that I have at parent's evening, please come and see me.
Paradise Wildlife Park trip - 24/05/2019
The children had a great time on our class trip to 'Paradise Wildlife Park.' They were very excited to get on the coach with their buddy and were extremely responsible the whole way there. When we arrived they listened carefully and followed instruction well, even though they were desperate to get inside. As we entered we went around the range of animal first. We met some Lions who were enjoying resting in the sun, a cheetah, a couple of tigers who were very stubborn and wouldn't say hello, a red panda, some cute monkeys, some snakes, a snappy alligator, some camels (who had the hump!), a few penguins and many more. We then went to watch a bird show, which was fantastic. The children sat beautifully as they watched the variety of birds in training, flying over their heads and taking treats from the trainers. Then it was Lunchtime, we found a shaded area as it was getting quite hot! The children loved their picnic style lunch, sat with their friends chatting about their morning so far and sharing their excitement about what was to come. In the afternoon we had a run around in their magnificent play area and headed into the Dinosaur encounter. The sound effects really set the atmosphere and you actually felt like you were walking around Jurassic park. The dinosaurs were fabulous and the children enjoyed linking our facts we had learnt to the relevant dinosaur. They particularly enjoyed the dinosaur that squirted water at the end. Speaking of water, due to the heat and how well the children had behaved, after much pestering I agreed that we could go and paddle in the splash park. We took our shoes and socks off and headed in to splash around, some of us getting a little more wet than expected but, it was only water and as one child said, "It's only water it will dry won't it Mrs Ralph?" It was a brilliant day and the whole of Firetips represented our school in such a fantastic way, I was extremely proud to say I was there teacher.
Friday 3rd May 2019
Welcome to Summer term, where has the year gone? The children have got back straight into routine with no problems at all. We are feeling very proud of all their effort and independence already, so far this term.
The end of last term saw us releasing and saying goodbye to our class butterflies, which we grew from being baby caterpillars. The children thoroughly enjoyed this experience, watching the changes daily, which brought lots of new language and learning to our classroom.
This term we have started our new topic... DINOSAURS! The children are loving it! From the role play, to the dino dig and all the other exciting activities we have completed so far.
Over the past couple of weeks in maths we have consolidated teen numbers, using numicon, playing teen number bingo, going on a number hunt and many other practical ways. It is really important that your child can order 1-20 and identify one more and one less, so if you have any spare time please play the odd math game to assist their learning. Many games on topmarks.co.uk will help with this.
In literacy we are really pushing for independent writing now. We started off by looking at 'Talk 4 Writing' Pie Corbett to understand and be able to recite poetry. We replaced words with symbols and all the children were able to recite the poem from using the images. They then used their memory of the images to write out the poem, it was such a wonderful learning experience for them and myself, remember we never stop learning!
We have being busy doing many other things too; Digging in the dino dig, identifying fossils and finding tricky words on, 'real dinosaur bones.' Junk modelling the most amazing creations I have ever seen, from a yoghurt, to a castle, to a motorway. The children are enjoying making dinosaurs with playdough, operating the computer and practising their turn taking skills when their favourite game is being played.
Onto week 3 already next week, lots of exciting things planned kick starting with a visit from 2 Guinea pigs on Tuesday.
We hope you have a great bank holiday weekend!
Friday 15th March
In Literacy over the past two weeks we have been looking at non fiction writing. From having Zoolab in a couple of weeks ago, gave us purpose to write thank you cards, which we then sent to them. This week we have explored minibeasts further by creating our very own riddles and writing a list form our bug hunt findings. Despite the gusty winds, we headed out on Wednesday to do a bug hunt around the school grounds. We had to do lots of hunting to find the minibeasts that were keeping safe and warm. The children recorded this information using tally marks which they then transferred into a list. From having the information from the hunt the children were able to write their lists as independently as possible.
In Maths over the past two weeks we have explored number bonds and doubling and halving. We used songs and a poem to help us remember the number bonds as well as lots of resources to make 10 in many ways. Doubling was explored using ladybird spots and playdough, dice rolling, butterfly printing using paint spots and numicon. The children have shown a great understanding of this and we could hear lots of new language in child initiated time around double numbers. Halving was done very practically using sharing circles, marshmellows and two pretend hot chocolate cups and cutting shapes/real life objects in half. If the children are having a snack this weekend maybe see if they can cut it in half or share it between two people?
Music is a real hit on a Wednesday morning with Mr Mitchell. We are particularly enjoying the drums whilst having great fun learning lots of technical music language. Pancake day was a treat for us all as we headed to the kitchen in small groups, mixed our batter and cooked our very own pancakes. The children enjoyed choosing their toppings and sharing their favourites and how they do pancake day at home. WORLD BOOK DAY, was a highlight in the past two weeks, all children involved and sharing their love of books. We wrote about our favourite book, did a catwalk and a reading session with nursery, we read on beanbags to music and used, 'The tiger who came to tea,' as our focus book for the day. This linked in with our jungle theme whilst creating opportunities for great art work and writing.
A busy, fun packed two weeks. We look forward to what the next two bring!
Friday 1st March 2019
We hope you had a great half term in the sunshine, we enjoyed lots of learning outside in the sunshine this week. A particular favourite was a popular tea party and cars/trucks made out of crates.
In Literacy we have been concentrating on the story 'The Very Hungry Caterpillar.' We have been really busy, ordering the days of the week and exploring amounts of food eaten on specific days and even created our, very own class book. (Which is available to view in our reading area). Our class book includes lots of different facts about Butterflies, which evidences some really great independent writing.
In Maths we have revised positional language, ensuring we all had a thorough understanding of this. We paired up and did some number hunting, where we had to direct our friends to the number. We have played a variety of games such as bingo, pairs with cards and using Beebot to help us with direction and understand positional language. Positional language is an area to be done practically, why not ask your child to help you out at home by, 'putting something on top of something,' or 'putting something underneath something.'
In P.E this term we are looking at movement & dance. We kick started this by exploring stories through music, where we went on a Lion hunt. We then explored the movement of a variety of jungle animals by travelling around, under and over obstacles, just like them.
The highlight of our week has to be when 'Zoolab' came in on Thursday afternoon, what a treat. The children were, excited, scared and nervous all at the same time but eager to meet all the minibeast and animals that came to visit. We met:
Lily the tarantulas
Susan the cockroach
Peter the giant African land snail
Trevor the frog
Molly the snake
Most children held or at least felt the animals, bar the spider, (we were only allowed to look at Lily). This experience brought lots of new language and new learning of facts about each animal we met. I hope they have been sharing this information with you at home. One child did ask after if we could have bunnies in next time, because they are 'cute and soft.' Please do let us know if this is a pet you have, as we would love to include children's interests in our future learning.
Friday 8th February 2019
This week we have learnt all about the celebration of 'Chinese New Year.' The children have thoroughly enjoyed all the variety of activities this week has provided.
In Literacy, we used drama to look at the story of the Zodiac and how the Years of the animals got their order. The children loved taking on a role as one of the animals and it really embedded the order and the characteristics of each one as some were meaner than others during the race. We have made posters about how Chinese people celebrate their new year and fact books all about China. The children have told me all about Panda's and what they eat, that the great wall of china is really long and that they use Dragon dancing in their parade, such great learning.
In Maths, we have explored one more and one less, empathising that when we find more our number gets bigger and when we find less our number gets smaller. Using a variety of indoor and outdoor lessons, the date every day and our number of the day, the children are really understanding the concept of more and less now.
To continue our focus of 'Chinese new year,' we completed an experiment with noodles looking at change and similarities/differences. The children made predictions and checked the noodles change in warm water at certain timings. They then reflected on if they thought their predicitons were correct or not. We also took a 'virtual' aeroplane trip to China, where we performed our very own dragon dance, this was a very special moment seeing all their teamwork and effort.
We also had our share & learn this week which was a real success and a great turn out. Thank you for all that came, it really means a lot to see your effort and dedication to your Children's learning, I hope you enjoyed the session as much as we did.
Friday 25th January 2019
Over the past couple of weeks Firetips have been busy consolidating their phase 2 and 3 phonic sounds. Using games and songs has really refresh all the children learnt before Christmas. You can make good use of that tablet time and access some of the fantastic games we play, via the websites below:
In Literacy we have explored the stories of, 'The three little pigs' and 'Red riding hood.' We have focussed a lot on sounding out our sentences, so that we are writing exactly what we want to say. Finger spaces and full stops are now in full steam and whenever children are writing at home please continue to encourage this, as they are doing really well. In regard to genres, we have explored:
- Letter writing
I'm very impressed by how independent Firetips are becoming with their learning, especially with their writing, which has improved greatly since Christmas.
In Maths we have explored the story of number, picking apart numbers 1-10 not only how they number is formed but number facts about each number, how each number is represented on a tens frame, which numicon represents which number and representation of number with real life objects. Numberblocks is a great resource to use at home to help with the story of number, you can find these episodes on the BBC iPlayer.
We had a recent workshop all about being super heroes saving the planet. This was based on Global warming and lead by a company called, 'Perform' who run out of school classes. The children were fully engaged in this and as they already knew some facts about the ice caps from our previous topic, they were really excited to be able to take part. A massive thank you to Perform for coming in and giving us their time!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Spring 1 - Friday 11th January
What a great first week back! It was so refreshing to see the chldren so excited to share their stories all about their break, this brought lots of show and tell and questionning. The children were given the opportunty to draw and write about what they did over the holidays.
In Literacy this week we have been exploring, 'Goldilocks and the Three Bears.' We used drama to act out the story and embed every detail, then went onto to create a wanted poster for Goldilocks as the children wanted her to say sorry to Baby Bear. As we discovered the Bear's have a love for porridge we decided to make our own, which was a very popular activity this week. This allowed us to explore lists in our writing by writing our ingredients and instructions for making porridge.
In Maths this week, we have re-capped 2D shape names and properties by, creating repeating patterns, organising the shapes using their properties (3 sides, 1 side, 4 sides) and using peg boards and lollipop sticks to re-create the shapes. Alongside 2D shapes we have had a real empathsis on 3D shapes, to gain further knowledge of shape names. The children have been sorting 2D and 3D shapes which helped them see the difference in the shapes, played shape shop and whats in the bag. (By using fun active games such as shape shop, the children are more engaged and do tend to remember more rather than looking at a work sheet). On Friday we ventured out on a shape hunt around the school grounds, the children were so independent as they tallied the shapes we had found and were able to recognise more and more shapes, the longer we were out.
There are some great games on the link below to help support 2D shape understanding and repeating patterns.
In child initiated play we have been busy making lots of different things in our home corner kitchen which is in our role play this term, we have decorated this area using rollers to paint and creating pictures for our walls. We have done lots of pouring and filling with the porridge in our tuff tray, re-created Goldilocks and the Three Bears using paper plates and done some great sharing when playing games/creating models.
7th December 2018- Cake shop role play, decorating our tree, Writing and delivering letters to Santa and our amazing day out at the Cathedral.
What an amazing fun filled, festive week!
We kick started the week by reading, ‘The Jolly Christmas postman,’ which got us in the festive mood to put our class tree up. The children’s faces were a delight, so full of excitement and happiness as we built the tree and decorated it. It was a real team effort, it was lovely to see everyone working together! We enjoyed learning about the Jolly Postman’s journey to post the variety of letters and parcels to the fairytale characters. This spurred the children to write their own cards during their independent learning time and send letters to Santa. As we are trying to involve Maggie wherever we can in our learning, we decided to take her along with us on our local walk to the post box. Fingers crossed we get our replies soon.
In maths we have been exploring, ‘estimation,’ where using pea pods and presents in the Jolly Postman’s sack, we made sensible guesses then counted to check if we were close to our estimates.
This week the boys decided to open up a cake shop in our creative area, using a variety of resources they made a selection of cakes and cookies and even got the rest of the class involved. It was great to see their role play progress into mark making as they made price lists and recipes. Miss Claridge and Mrs Ralph were treat to some delicious chocolate Smartie playdough cupcakes.
The end of the week we headed out on the public bus into town, for our trip to St Albans Cathedral. We had a fantastic day learning all about the Catchedral, the story of advent and how stain glass windows are made, we even got the chance to create our own versions. We would like to thank the Cathedral for providing us with this amazing opportunity, the children thouroughly enjoyed both workshops and loved their day out.
30th November- Forest school, measures and investigation.
Firetips have been super busy learning lots, inside and outside this week.
In maths we have been exploring the different ways that we measure something. Using rulers, unifix cubes and weighing scales, we looked at measuring cm's and weighing how heaving or light something was from looking at grams. Lots of language relating to size and weight came from this week's learning and the children were able to use the scales independently in their play. The children found a variety of items and compared them, discussing which item was the heaviest.
In Literacy we have been looking at the story, 'One Snowy night.' We sequenced the order of the animals, described Percy the Park keeper and took our imaginations to our forest school. During our afternoon in a rainy forest school we learnt about habitats and what animals/insects would make a home in our forest school. We even found some of the animals from our story hiding in the bushes. Next time you're walking through the park or woods, see what habitats you can find. We finished our wet, fun filled afternoon off with a yummy hot chocolate and a biscuit.
As Mrs Ralph is always learning she has recently created a new area in the classroom, an 'Investigation Station,' where the children investigate something every week. This week the children have accessed this area lots and enjoyed seeing our hyacinth grow and change and discover which things are magnetic in our room. Next week we will be investigating decaying foods, YUM!
The Polar Regions 16th November 2018
We have welcomed the children back to a new classroom environment with lots of exciting things on offer. The children have been exploring the role play, exploring in the igloo and made some amazing fact books about Polar Bears and Penguins. This week we had a whole school focus on well being week, where we have been extremely busy.
The beginning of the week we met Smartie the Penguin who told us all about being safe on the internet. We discussed who had a tablet and iPad and what sort of things we all did on the devices. As we are learning about Penguins the children really enjoyed his story and learnt the song and actions very well… “Before you tap and click, you don’t to stop and think AND TELL SOMEONE!”
We then went onto healthy eating, where we did observational paintings of fruit and vegetables, made smoothies and sorted a healthy lunch box and an unhealthy lunch box.
Mid week we focused on the importance and effect of exercise. We had a calm afternoon by taking part in some Arctic Yoga. They enjoyed exploring all the different positions and the tranquil music helped create a calming environment. The day after we saw physical activity in another light, we took part in an amazing workshop from 'KIDZ FIT.' All the children loved the Kidz Fit workshop all were fully engaged and totally engrossed. Every child had a go and there was a real focus on diet and raising your heartbeat during exercise.
We then looked at bullying. We focused on two apples, spoke about how they both looked the same. We then passed one apple round saying kind things and then passed the other apple round saying bad things. We spoke about how we felt when we were saying horrible things, lots of the children hesitated when saying the nasty things which showed that this made them feel uncomfortable. I then asked who wanted to eat the apples, all children were desperate so I cut both apples open. When I cut the apple open that we said nice things to I heard things like mmm and yummy. When I cut open the apple that we had said mean things to, (that I had previously bruised), I heard things like urgh and yuk! When I asked why the apple looked so bad inside, I got lots of suggestions and finally one child said because we hurt it. We then discussed how the apple felt and how would we feel if someone was mean to us.
Friday we looked at Equality and Diversity. Where we used two different coloured playdough to represent two people.
We passed around both pieces, describing how they felt, how they looked and how they smelt. The children quickly came to establish similarities and differences.. They both felt ‘soft and squishy,’ both smelt abit different and one was bigger than the other. I asked if they both could be played with, to which all children replied, “yes.” I then explained like just like the playdough we are all different but may have some things the same, (hair colour, eye colour etc), and that is a real great thing, because if were all the same it would be boring and just like the playdough we all can play and no-one should be left out.
AND FINALLY 'Children In Need.' A great success by all children getting involved meant that we contributed really well towards the schools fundraising for this amazing charity. We watched clips of the children our money helps, how others fund raise and spoke about how lucky we are.
Week 8 - Road safety and share & learn.
On Tuesday we had a road safety officer come in and teach us all about keeping safe, when crossing the road and in the car. We watched a video and learnt a song, take a look here.. https://www.think.gov.uk/education-resources/explore-education-resources/?age%5B0%5D=3-to-6&resource_type%5B%5D=film. We then got to have a go ourselves at crossing the road in class. We had to look, listen and think before we crossed the road to make sure it was safe to do so.
On Wednesday we had a great morning with our adults in class, exploring all the different activities and sharing our learning. Thank you to all the adults who came and made it special for the children.
We will spend the rest of our week revising phonics that we learnt this term, re-capping maths and a well earned film on Friday afternoon, with a biscuit and some popcorn.
A big well done to all the children who are a credit to you all and have worked so hard in their first term. I'm looking forward to all the exciting things we will get up to next term. Have a wonderful half term.
Mrs Ralph & Miss Claridge
W.C 15th October 2018
Week 7 and Firetips are working as hard as ever!
Another great week of learning, we are seeing lots of independence in Phonics now where children are blending and segmenting three letter words which they are becoming able to spell. Alphablocks is a great programme to use at home, for hearing and identifying sounds if the children have any spare time to fill.
In Literacy this week we have based all our work around a short Pixar animation called, 'La Luna,' which means moon. The children demonstrated their imagination by sharing predictions at different parts of the animation and discussing who the characters could be. Lots of great vocabulary was produced, which is great for our communication and language skills.
In maths we have been exploring addition, remembering that our answer always gets bigger when we add numbers together. This was a great opportunity to use our addition machine and play lots of games to enhance vocab and understanding of addition.
We have been very fortunate to be able to buy brand new reading books from a strong scheme, please continue to share these at home whilst taking good care of them. I would like to thank the parents and congratulate the children and who have reached their first 'give me 10' milestone. I look forward to giving the children who are close to reading 25 times, their book very soon.
W.C 8th October 2018 - Space facts, capacity and forest school
This week we have been exploring non fiction in Literacy by looking at facts about space. Using our creative skills we have created a 'Space facts book,' which includes pictures and key vocabulary. Some children did an amazing job at using their phonics and understanding of 'tricky words,' to help them write their first ever sentence, which has been amazing to witness.
In maths we have been exploring capacity by using water and various measuring equipment including cups and jugs. We have also been using objects and images to measure height and length, using the vocab, smallest, shortest, tallest, biggest and longest. Maybe you could try looking at capacity when next in the bath with any objects lying around?
We had our first trip to our forest school on Wednesday, which was great fun. During our session we explored change by finding dead and alive leaves. We discussed why the leaves change colour and why they fall onto the floor, we finished our session with a story in our outdoor story area.
Aliens love underpants! 05/10/2018
This week we have been reading, 'Aliens love underpants,' where the children have been busy designing their own pants, using collage and fabric pens and creating UFOs, using a variety of materials.
In literacy we have been designing our own Aliens out of playdough and wrote about our alien. On Wednesday our pants that we had designed, went missing, so the children came up with a great idea to create missing posters and maps.
In maths we have been exploring 2D shapes in a variety of ways, naming, recognising properties and creating rocket shape pictures. The children have really enjoyed using our interactive whiteboard this week to explore various maths games. The website we use is,
https://www.topmarks.co.uk/maths-games/5-7-years/counting and can be used on any laptop or tablet, maybe you could have some fun too and have a go at home?
Alien Invasion!! 28th September 2018
This week we had a special visitor in Firetips, 'Nig the Alien.' The children found him in our outdoor area and discovered a spaceship when we looked back on CCTV. We even took a visit to the office to see if Mrs Abbot had seen the spaceship.
The children have cared and looked after Nig so kindly, and we spoke about what made a good friend in our PSED circle time.
We have written postcards and drew pictures of Nig in Literacy and been focusing on our number bonds to 10 in maths.
In P.E we used equipment to create an obstacle course through space.
We sadly discovered this morning that Nig has now gone back home, however we can't wait to see what adventures we have in store for us next week.
Firetip's have had a great couple of weeks settling in, exploring our spaceship, building rockets, performing on our new outdoor stage and choosing their learning in all the exciting areas.
All children have done fantastic with their first couple of 'full' days at school, and we are extremely impressed with their responsibility at lunch times.
We have now started our phonics, following the 'Jolly Phonics programme, where we use actions and songs to learn our new sounds and in maths we have been ordering and recognising numbers 1-10.
'Whatever Next!,' is our focus in Literacy, this week. It's a story about Baby Bear who visits the moon and has a picnic, with his friend Owl. We are very much hoping for good weather for our very own picnic, on Friday afternoon.
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