Welcome to Reception!
Term: Autumn 1. W/C 10th September 2018
Class Teachers: Mrs. A. Price and Mrs. S. Duff.
Teaching Assistants: Mrs. O. Draycott and Mrs. B. Bostock.
Welcome to St. Joseph’s Catholic Primary School. I hope that you have had a wonderful summer break and are ready to embark upon this new chapter as a family with your child. The children have had a positive start and seem to be settling into school life well. Within this initial newsletter I hope to guide you through this first half term and to give you some tips in order to make the transition into school life easier.
Tips and Information
As the children are maturing it is important that they develop their independence. It is helpful if they can recognise their own belongings and can dress and undress with minimal adult intervention. Please ensure that all of your child’s uniform and belongings are clearly labelled and that they can recognise and read their name independently.
We spend quite a lot of time outdoors in the Early Years and have to dress according to the weather. Rain and wind does not stop the Reception Explorers! Can you therefore provide them with a waterproof coat that they can independently put on as the weather gets colder?
The only bag that is needed in school is your child’s school book bag. Your child has also been given a plastic wallet, this is to put in their reading book and record and any homework that is sent out.
Fruit is provided free of charge for each child every day. Until your child’s fifth birthday they will also be provided with a free carton of milk. This is given at morning snack time. Please check that you only provide plain water in your child’s water bottle every day. Children have free access to the water throughout the day and can fill up their bottle whenever it is necessary. Please be aware that I do not have spare bottles in class and it would be helpful if water bottles could be named.
Reception Class follow the programme of work outlined in the Curriculum Strategy for Religious Education, ‘Learning and Growing as the People of God’. The programme supports the children to develop an appreciation of themselves and the world around them. This half term the children will learn about Creation and People Who Help Us.
Much of the focus in R.E. during the children’s Reception year is about developing their understanding and experiences of prayer. Most of the work is very practical either through discussion, role play and stories. A Star Child will be chosen at the beginning of the week and this child will take home our Prayer Teddy and Prayer Bag. This contains prayers and a book to record what Prayer Teddy has done with your child in the week. Prayer Teddy and the Prayer Bag is to be returned to school on the following Monday.
Your child has now received their first reading book. Initially, this may be a picture book which will be used to help settle your child into a good reading routine and then they will progress onto simple words and sentences. Please ensure that you choose a quiet, comfortable place to share this book and encourage your child to follow the text with their finger as they read. Ideally we would like your child to read every day. This only needs to be for 5-10 minutes.
We will read with your child on a 1:1 basis twice a week. Additionally, please supplement our reading scheme with books from home or the library. We ask that each time you read with your child you record details of what they read in their home reading record. When your child is ready, word lists will be sent home for your child to learn.
Teaching of phonics will take place every morning. We follow the Letters and Sounds scheme and your child will learn a new sound every day and on Friday will recap the week’s sounds.
This will be set on Fridays and must be completed and returned by the following Tuesday. Please support your child with their homework and help them to hold their pencil correctly if it is written homework. Homework is an opportunity to see what your child is learning in school. Use homework as a way of finding out about your child’s learning. If your child is willing and able to complete more than the required amount please do, but do not force this as we are trying to embed a love of learning that will last a lifetime. Many of our earlier homework activities will be of a practical nature. Please feel free to comment on how your child managed their homework tasks. This will help us with your child’s assessment.
This term Reception Class will practise counting and recognising numbers to ten and beyond. The children will also be encouraged to solve mathematical problems, many involving simple addition. These activities will always be of a practical nature and ideas for supporting at home will be provided in your child’s homework book. Playing games, such as snakes and ladders and dominoes is an ideal way of extending this work as it involves counting and number recognition. Shape, Space and Measures work will focus on 2D shapes and capacity. A large aspect of this work is of a practical nature and encouraging the children to use the correct vocabulary.
Please encourage your child to make marks and attempt to write or trace their name. Always start with a capital letter and continue with lower case letters. Always use lots of positive praise so that these first learning experiences are good ones that they will want to repeat.
Topic and Creative Play
Our topic for this half term is ‘Ourselves. We will be learning about the school environment and our community. The children will also be thinking about themselves and their amazing bodies. This will involve scientific investigation into their senses, eye and hair colour. Alongside the Creative Curriculum, learning is taken from the needs and interests of the children. The majority of the work attempted in Reception Class is of a practical, playful nature and very hands on. The children are encouraged to regard their own and the safety of others whilst still taking measured risks (balancing along crates, large water play using pipes etc.) The children know to wear protective clothing when attempting certain activities, but accidents do happen and we ask for your understanding if your child’s uniform gets a bit dirty.
On Tuesday and Thursday Reception Class will have P.E sessions. This half term the children will practise going into the hall and remembering P.E rules. They will do this whilst playing simple games and will learn how to find a ‘good space’, incorporating other safety rules.
On these 2 days children are expected to come into school in their P.E. kits, using their jogging bottoms in winter.
Dates for your diary
Please refer to the school website for an up to date list of events.
I have set up an Instagram page for parents to follow. This will have no pictures or names of children published. It is for parents to view the classroom and the activities we will be doing. This may include displays (no picture of children), vocabulary, resources used in a lesson and other images I think you may find useful.
Follow on: @earlyeducationwithmrsp
As this is the first newsletter of the year it is quite lengthy. Subsequent newsletters will not be as extensive.
I hope I have covered most queries you may have at the start of your child’s first year at school. If you have any other queries or problems please do not hesitate to contact myself or the other reception members of staff, who will be happy to answer any of your questions.
Thank you for your continued support of the school and the reception class, and we very much look forward to watching your children grow and learn in their first year of school.
Mrs. A. Price.
Reception Class Teacher