Back to school with a… squeak!

The children were absolutely delighted to return to school for a brand new term, especially when they discovered that it was our turn to take care of Snowy and Cookie, our school Guinea Pigs! Our new, squeaky classmates have certainly caused a lot of excitement and the children have taken to their caregiving role with enthusiasm, feeding them the right foods (though not too much), cleaning out their cage and ensuring that they feel happy in a calm and quiet environment. The furry pair have also inspired the children to get creative, as some of them took to creating their own Guinea Pig homes, complete with musical instrument areas and slides!

Maths has been a lot of fun this week, as the children have been applying their number knowledge to group games! Ash class have been playing ‘Race to Thirty’ and spotting the recognisable patterns made by the tens frames they used. Saplings have been playing games with Numicon, matching the amounts to their corresponding numerals.

A mysterious package arrived early on in the week with a message that instructed the children to “pick up the mat”. Underneath the mat in the cosy corner, we discovered that our brand new text for the term had been left for us! The children have been learning about the story of Anansi and how it is a tale that originated from Ghana, in Africa. As well as enjoying the story, and finding different ways to save poor Anansi, the children have loved learning a Ghanaian call and response song, Che Che Kule.

The children also applied their phonic knowledge to their writing this week. Ash class are revisiting the sounds ow oo ur oi and are working on writing sentences independently, and Saplings are revisiting h f b e as well as beginning to hear sounds blending to make words.

Harold has been teaching us about another part of his scarf this week, which is all about ‘resilience’. We spoke about how this means that, even if something isn’t going to plan, we don’t give up and we learn from our previous mistakes about how to improve. The children were challenged with some rather frustrating tasks, including building wobbly Jenga towers and houses of dominoes and cards. Time and time again, these structures wobbled and fell down… but the spirits of the children were far from broken! We saw lots of problem solving arising from these early attempts, such as changing from a slippy surface to one that had more grip to it, and building a wider base to improve the structure’s stability. The children’s perseverance was truly admirable and their ability to keep calm and self-regulate when things don’t go to plan is really developing well.