Year 1 Blog

Welcome to the blog for our Year 1 classes. The year group blogs are a great communication tool. Teachers will be posting news, photographs, details of homework, examples of work, and anything they wish to share with their pupils and parents. Please speak to your class teacher if you have any question, feedback or concerns.

Mrs Foulds

Green Class Teacher

Mrs De Vynck

Purple Class Teacher

We have two year 1 classes. Children in these classes are developing their skills and building on the learning from Foundation Stage. When the children are ready, usually by October half term, the learning becomes based on the Key Stage One National Curriculum Programmes of Study. We still believe that children learn best when the ‘subjects’ are linked in a meaningful way and then basic skills are taught for a real purpose. We encourage the children to take ownership of their learning, ask questions and have a say in the planning process. We hope to motivate all children by taking account of their needs, strengths and interests and provide rich experiences and learning opportunities which will continue to excite them.

Last week in Green Class

There was lots of singing in the last week of school. The children had been practising lots of songs, learning words and tunes very well. They sang at the year 2 leavers’ concert, about nocturnal animals, in keeping with our focus on animals in the summer term. Then they sang at the Meeting where the school said good-bye to Mrs Cooper, Mrs Lyal and me, Mrs Gibbons! They worked very hard to learn new songs for these adults, including some songs with special words, which was very touching and a reflection on the kindness and commitment shown by both staff and children to the departing teachers.

We completed our Maths learning about Capacity, when they children engaged in very good discussion about how to work out proportions of containers – eg if 2 quarters of the jug are full, is half empty?

In the last few weeks we learnt about different minibeasts – the parts of the body, what they eat, where they live. If you have some time over the holidays – and the sun comes out! – you could do a minibeast hunt with your child, either in the back garden, a park like Highfield or at more organised events. I read, this morning, that Aylett’s have a “butterfly corner” this summer, for example. The Nature Detectives website has lots of good ideas and free spotter and information sheets.

I hope you all have a very happy – and warm! – summer wherever you go and whatever you do. I am hoping that I will bump into families over the summer and beyond and will very much look forward to hearing your news. Green Class has been a wonderfully attentive, thoughtful and cheerful class. They have grown in maturity over the year and their skills have improved, through their own efforts and dedication – and support of parents. Hopefully, the children will have as many happy memories  of Year 1 as I have.


Sainsbury vouchers – thank you!

Thank you for the fantastic effort made in collecting the Sainsbury Active vouchers. You collected and sent in 10,400 altogether! This means that we were able to order 30 “shape mats” to be used for PE. There were just over 200 vouchers left after this so we also ordered a few more skipping ropes, as they frequently wear out and need replacing. The resources should arrive before October. The Sainsbury vouchers are effectively the school’s budget for PE equipment so your effort in supporting the school is very much appreciated.

Purple Class ~ Summer 2 ~ Week 5

First of all, thank you to all parents who could make to Parents Consultation this week. It is always a great opportunity to celebrate achievements and discuss ways to move the children’s learning further. As always, if you have any other questions or there is anything you would like to raise following our conversations, feel free to see us after school. In general, the children in year 1 are ready and looking forward to moving to Silver Class and we have all confidence that they will do as brilliantly as they have this year!

Following our Spirited Arts Day last Thursday, we handed out the certificates to the 10 children whose artwork was selected to enter the 2017 Spirited Arts Competition. We are very proud of the three Year 1 school finalists. To read more about this NATRE initiative, please visit their website.

Year 1 winners

In Maths we are learning about capacity and volume and we have been doing various practical activities using rice or water. The children are applying their knowledge of halves and quarters to discuss volume of different containers.

Since the whole country is following the Wimbledom Championships, we decided to practise our serving (throwing underarm and overarm). Despite the heat, the children had great fun and also joined in with the running and skipping races with great enthusiasm.

If you are asking yourself why the children came back home with their own pictures… Today we used our imagination to create a story: What would it be like to be as small as one of the mini-beasts we have been learning about? How would it feel if all of a sudden we shrunk? Once again, the children produced lovely pieces of very creative writing. I couldn’t stop thinking about one of the favourite movies of my youth “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids”. Trying not to show my age here!

If you haven’t yet signed in to come to school on Friday, there are still a few places available in the morning. I am really pleased with the interest in the day so far and look forward to share our learning in Purple Class with all the parents. Also, please do come and visit our class to see some of the children’s work on display and have a preview of their next year’s classroom.

Finally, a couple of photos from our Sports Day last Friday.

Have a lovely weekend and I see you all again on Monday.

w/c 3rd July in Green Class

In Maths we have started learning about capacity, another form of measure when the questions asked and answered are “how much?” or “how many?” In capacity, we want to find out how many units fill a container. The children have used rice – safe, visual but also very messy! – and different containers to get used to measuring and also – very importantly – estimating. The skill of estimation is a very important one when it comes to deep Mathematical understanding and is always a good one to practise, in different contexts, at home. The children have practised measuring one non-standard unit – a yoghurt pot, or a bottle – exactly by filling it to the top and then making sure the top is level. Today they also thought about volume, which is how much “liquid” is in a container, regardless of whether it is up to capacity. They then used their knowledge of halves and quarters to work out how many units full the container would be it is was half or a quarter full. For example, if a jug has a volume of 8 yoghurt pots then half would be 4 yoghurt pots and a quarter would be 2. What would three-quarters be?

The “stained glass windows” made as part of Spirited Arts Day look wonderful on the class windows and the children were thrilled to see their full effect.

Today everyone wrote very well-thought out and careful versions of “Little Red Riding Hood”. Every child really tried his/her best to use adjectives, different ways to start sentences and wordbanks and sounds to spell. However, many children still do need to remember to use a capital letter and full-stop at every sentence!

The children have been practising longer-distance running today. They really got the hang of  running in teams, one starting after the other and running round a circle of cones. It’s great to see the children enthusiastically joining in and engaging in friendly competition in the right spirit. Their parents should be very proud of them!

We have lots of topic-related songs to practise. The children in particular like out song about nocturnal animals and one which some parents might remember – a children’s version of “Celebration” by Kool and The Gang. We will sing these at the year 2 leavers’ concert.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Sports Day 2017

Hurray! The weather was kind and sports day went ahead on the first scheduled date! Thank you to all the parents for coming to support your children and also helping with a group. The children participated with gusto and confidence, they used their skills very well and  showed great competitive spirit – winning with pride and losing with grace and good humour, for most part. Well done everyone, from Reception to Year 2 you are very good sports.  It’s such a delight seeing all the children give their all and show their developing athletic skills.

The Year 5s did a fantastic job of organising and helping with all the activities. You are going to be amazing Year 6 children, if you show this level of maturity and communication this year. Thank you to Mrs Beattie for bringing the children over and helping with setting them up at the races.

Also, thank you to CHISS for providing the very welcome ice-lollies at the end.



Butterflies fly away!

We made the most of the lack of rain to release the butterflies from Green Class today. It wasn’t as warm as we would have liked, but they had already been in the net for two days and we didn’t want to have lots more caterpillars to look after! The children knew to be calm and quiet when they were let out. We watched them fly into the sky, looking very beautiful. Hopefully, they will now have happy lives in the wildlife area, lay eggs and help produce more Painted Lady butterflies. Watching the caterpillars grow and change completely into butterflies is always really amazing


Green Class wc 19th June

Weather permitting, Sports Day should be next Friday 30th June. If you are coming along the Sports Day and do not have any younger siblings, either in a pushchair or not, please could you let me know. I need parent helpers to accompany each group round the activities. Many thanks.

With the very hot weather, the caterpillars very quickly became chrysalides and we have all been fascinated watching the process and wondering what is going on inside the chrysalides. The metamorphosis from caterpillar to “soup” in the chrysalis, to butterfly, is really an amazing aspect of nature.

In Maths the children have been learning about equal and unequal groups and repeatedly adding the same group (repeated addtion). You could practise this at home by, for example, adding up pairs of socks – 2,4, 6,8 – 4 groups of 2 make 8. You could write the repeated addition equation – 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 = 8. Or add up a row of 5p pieces of 10p pieces; or group together little bunches of 3 or 4 strawberries or grapes and say the groups and the repeated addition and write the equation. The more visual representations the children see and the more they verbalise, using precise Maths language, what they see, the better their comprehension and the more numerically fluent they will become. This mastery of Maths with ” small numbers” is essential for real confidence and comprehension at later stages.

We talked and wrote  about a drawing called “Land Ahoy” and the children loved finding and using new vocabulary – deck, grill, ventilator,etc. They wrote some excellent adventures for Syd. The picture comes from a book and next week we will read the story.

The children are getting better at Sports Day skills – running, jumping and throwing! We have lots of songs to practise for this half-term and the children’s tunefulness and ability to sing together have improved throughout the year.

Nearly all the children are six now and there are lots of wobbly teeth – it must be getting to the end of year 1! They are nearly ready for year 2: please keep up with the regular reading, spelling practise, number bonds, and topical talking and together we will prepare them for year 2.

This week in Purple Class

It’s the weekend again and the children in Purple Class have been very busy learning loads of exciting things.

They have been closely watching the metamorphosis of painted lady butterflies. They were really excited when they each transfered one delicate caterpillar into a pot with some special food. They observe them everyday and have been very careful when doing so. They were so impressed when they came back on Monday and most caterpillars had changed into chrysalides. They then watched when Mrs Hogan transfered each of the chrysalides to the inside of the net using a sticker. Now we are anxiously waiting for them to emerge as beautiful butterflies. Watch this space!

We had our first lessons on multiplication (as repeated addition) and division (as sharing) and the children are showing how much they have learnt so far and how they can apply their knowledge of doubles and halves, number bonds, part-part-whole model as well as becoming more independently with their choice of manipulatives. This week we have used cake cases, counters, straws, cubes and money to practise repeated addition. They are all really enjoying this unit. In one of our lessons they had to crack a code: which and how many of a 2-d shape can you make if you have 12 sides? They quickly solved it and moved on to find out how many variations of shapes could they make if they had 20 sides… There were many possible combinations. Below you can see that they could find out they could make either 6 squares (or rectangles) or 8 triangles. They then carried on finding out combinations of both shapes. They were so engrossed on this investigation they didn’t notice it was lunch time!

Fingers crossed for good weather next week to make our Sports Day possible on Friday. Purple Class has been practising the skills needed for the races and they are loving it. They are getting really good at getting into their groups and taking part in the races. We look forward to seeing many families joining us on Friday for an afternoon of races and fun!

Today the children took part on the St Albans celebrations by coming to school in blue and yellow. Many thanks for your kind donations.

Eid Mubarak to all celebrating the Eid al-Fitr.

See you on Monday for another fantastic week of learning adventures, especially our REAL day on Thursday: a day full of  RE, Arts and Literacy.

Have you all a cool weekend.

Mrs De Vynck


Purple Class in Kew Gardens

What a fantastic day we all had at Kew Gardens. Despite arriving slightly late due to traffic into London, we still managed to have a day packed with exciting adventures.

We had an activity ran by the Kew’s team when the children were looking for mini-beasts in the local trees and trying to identify them. They were trying to find out who had killed the fly in a picture puzzle. Then they visited a green house where they saw and talked about some carnivorous plants.

After lunch under the cool shades of a tree, we had a quick tour around the gardens. We really enjoyed the glass house with its foreign vegetation. The children talked about the plants from the different continents they have been learning (and singing) about. They were particularly surprised with the banana tree! Just opposite the glass house is the lily pad house and the children were really impressed by the size of the pads and the stunning beauty of the lilies.

Before the end of our wonderful trip, we had a stroll towards the beehive where we took our group photo.


On Friday the children will be writing their recount of today’s trip and I’m sure they will add much more detail to my short retelling.

Once again, thank you very much to all the parents who came with us and made this learning experience possible.

All I can say is that the coach sounded much quieter on our way back. Now to a well deserved rest and see you all back tomorrow.

If you want to know more about Kew Gardens attractions, please visit their website.

Mrs De Vynck ~ Purple Class

A nursery in Green Class

We have some new arrivals in Green Class…. some babies… baby caterpillars. They arrived through the post, in a cardboard box; and have been installed in their new homes. I can guarantee we will have lots of interesting fun seeing them develop. The warm weather forecast should lead to some speedy growth.  What do your children will think will happen to the caterpillars?


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