Year 1 Autumn 2020

We are really impressed with how the children have settled back into school and adapted to all the new school routines. It is clear that the children have been working very hard at home and can apply their skills to help them with new learning.

We have been focusing on catching up and filling gaps from the time the children were unable to be in school. We have been doing daily handwriting, fine motor skills, phonics, writing and maths activities along with the other subjects. 

The children have started the new topic ‘Animal life’ and have enjoyed learning how to classify animals and label the different animal body parts. They have also been painting their favourite animals.   

Learning how Jewish People celebrate Purim! – Spring Term 1 2020

In Year 1 the children have been introduced to Judaism as part of their RE studies.  Children had the opportunity to examine and handle Jewish artifacts, such as the Torah, a kippur, and a menorah.   They also learnt about the Jewish story of Queen Esther who saved her people long ago.  People of the Jewish faith celebrate this event during the party festival of Purim.

The children were encouraged to ask questions about this faith and the festival and then take part in some creative activities such as making Purim crowns and cards. 

Everyone had a try at making the distinctive 3 cornered hamantashen biscuits and talked about the significance of eating them within the festival.   We joined together in classes at the end of the day to wear our crowns, listen to Jewish music and eat our biscuits!

Mad Science, wicked weather workshops – Spring Term 1 2020

As a start to the year 1 topic ‘Weather Experts’ the children had a visitor, Dr Dee Enay, from Mad Science. She started with a whole school assembly focussing on how electricity travels. Dr Dee Enay explained how there were tendrils of electricity trying to get to the Earth as quickly as possible and that materials are either conductors or insulators. This built on the children’s learning from last term (everyday materials) and provided them opportunities to ask questions to further their understanding. She explained how the electricity could travel through a human circuit and demonstrated with several children from Reception and KS1.

“The electricity went through 6 people”.

“Dr Dee Enay made a dimmer switch with the children she said dim dim dim off and it turned off”.

Afterwards Dr Dee Enay worked with each year 1 class to explore rainbows and how light bends.  She started by discussing the children’s previous science learning, how they had been observing the changes in the seasons, and provided children opportunities to share their own experiences. The children discussed what they knew about the sun and light and Dr Dee Enay extended their learning by providing fun facts such as:

  • The sun is 93 million miles away
  • The light from the sun is called white light
  • If you bend the light you can see the colours of the rainbow

The children were able to wear special light bending glasses to observe all the colours in white light. They also discussed how white light and laser light are different. Finally the children witnessed how the lightning in the Vander graph could create static electricity. The children learnt that static electricity is caused by friction and that it could be transferred to others.

These sessions extended the children’s current science skills and knowledge and prepared them for the learning that will be taking place this half term. The children are now enthusiastic to learn more and become Weather Experts!! Each class will be completing an enquiry where they observe changes over time. The children will create weather diaries recording what they could see and hear. After each recording the children will discuss the similarities, differences, patterns and changes between the weather we have. We are looking forward to some exciting science this term!

Year 1 and 2 children perform the pantomime ‘Aladdin Trouble’

Year 1 and 2 children have worked extremely hard this half term to produce the pantomime of Aladdin Trouble and have performed this to Reception, Year 3 children, parents and members of the community.

All children were given a role to play in the pantomime and made everyone who was part of the production very proud! The children learnt songs and lines as well as being very professional on stage. They all enjoyed being part of the show and worked really well as a team.

The teachers and TAs worked incredibly hard too, to put the show together and make all of the props that brought the tale to life.

The finished show was fantastic and was enjoyed by every audience that came to see it. One member of the community said “I enjoyed watching the performance so much, the children try very hard and it is lovely to see them having so much fun on stage!”

Some of the main characters from the show: Genie, Aladdin, Jasmine, Widow Twankey and Abanazar

In Literacy, the Year 2 children became Theatre Critics and wrote reviews of their pantomime. Here are a couple of examples:

Year 1 Autumn 1 2019 – Harvest Activity Afternoon

As part of their Harvest Thanksgiving celebrations (linked to RE work), Year 1 invited parents and carers into their classes to join in with a Harvest Activity afternoon.  There was a variety of activities to choose from to support fine motor skills, outdoor learning, art and creativity.  Both children and their adults enjoyed teaming up together to explore the class and outside area.   Outdoors there was a scavenger hunt and printing using paint and vegetables.  Indoors children and visitors were very busy making paper pumpkins, designing scarecrow faces, or enjoying mindfulness Harvest themed colouring and play-do challenges.

Cats Protection Visit to Year 1

As part of Year 1’s ‘Animal Life’ topic, we have had a visitor from the Cats Protection charity.

The children learnt about how to look after cats, how to behave around them, and the signs that the animals might give to show how they are feeling. The children asked lots of inquisitive questions about how long the animals live for, how they are looked after, and used their own experiences of looking after cats to suggest answers to questions. They were very interested to look at a microchip and learn how it can help us to know who a cat belongs to.

Year 1 Banham Zoo Trip Autumn 1 2019

Year 1 children went to Banham Zoo as part of their topic ‘Animal Life’. They took part in a workshop learning about animals that are carnivores, herbivores and omnivores which fits in with the science learning for Year 1. The children had the chance to touch and hold an animal from each of these groups. They were also able to look at the different teeth animals had depending on what they ate.

The children had plenty of time to look round the zoo and were very interested to read the information on the signs and find out what the animals ate. They were then able to classify them into either a carnivore, herbivore or omnivore.

The children were excited to find out new facts and many of them thought of questions about the animals. We continued our learning by researching some of these questions back at school.

Summer 2 2019 – Year 1 Holkham Hall Trip

We were very excited on the coach during our journey to Holkham Hall. As we travelled down the long drive we played I-Spy to see what we could spot.

When we arrived at Holkham Hall, we were greeted by the staff and we started our different activities.

We walked around the Field to Fork experience.

We learnt about the Coke family who lived in Holkham Hall and saw their family tree. We learnt that now Lord and Lady Leicester live there with their four children, four dogs and a parrot named Basil!

We saw lots of different tools and equipment that are used on the farm.

We saw lots of different products that are made from crops that are grown at Holkham.

We also learnt about the deer and birds that live at Holkham Hall and we looked at one of the deer antlers.

Some of us got to try on the game keepers hats!

We also watched a film all about farming at Holkham.

Another activity was learning all about the story of Holkham Hall.

We learnt about the history of the hall, the families and about the different people who work there. Some of us got to dress up as these people and pretend to do their jobs.

Finally we went into Holkham Hall. We saw the beautiful Marble hall, the Parrot Bedroom, the old Kitchen and the Saloon.

We all had a fantastic time at Holkham Hall and learnt about how people used to live years ago!

Summer 1 2019 – Year 1 Wedding

Celebrations were in full swing at Toftwood Infant School when all of the Year One children went to St Nicholas’ Church in Dereham to learn about the Christian celebration of marriage. The Reverend Sally Theakston conducted a special friendship ceremony for three ‘brides’ and three ‘grooms’, who pledged to be friends for ever. All of the children dressed up for the occasion, with the wedding party in full wedding dress and all the guests in their best clothes.

The visit took place to enhance the children’s learning about the Christian celebration of marriage, which they had been learning about in school. The children have learnt about the roles of people involved in a wedding, used a range of Christian artefacts to develop their understanding and made celebration cupcakes and invitations.

They also sang the song ‘Sing Hosanna’ accompanied by Mrs George, a TA at the school, on the Church organ.

They then returned to school to have a wedding breakfast. The children all enjoyed eating the cupcakes they had made and decorated, followed by a first dance and the celebrations continued throughout the afternoon.

Spring 2 2019 – Year 1

Our Planet and Beyond

The children have been really interested in our topic so far. We have learnt about the ‘Race into Space’ and enjoyed finding out about Albert the monkey, Laika the dog, Yuri Gagarin, Valentina Tereshkova and Neil Armstrong. We also looked at moon buggies and the children were able to design and make their own as part of their Design and Technology learning.

The children have also learnt about the artist Jackson Pollock and had a go at creating some galaxy pictures in the splatter painting style – this was great fun!

We all had a go at making our own rockets that would shoot into the air too. We used a plastic canister and filled it with water before dropping an effervescent tablet into the water and putting the lid tightly on. We then stood back and waited for the results.

In Science, we have learnt about materials and the children went on a materials hunt around school. They were also able to describe different materials and went on to investigate the different properties of these.