What a fantastic week we all had last week. I have been blown away by the children's enthusiasm for returning to school. They have all grown, physically and emotionally. We have established some clear class rules and expectations which I hope will carry us through this year. We have formed some routines and have enjoyed getting stuck into our new topic. So, what is there to look forward to this week?
Spellings: We begin each morning by practising our new spelling pattern for the week. It is so important that the children master spelling rules this year, not just learn a list of 10 words for a test. I have encouraged the children to learn the rules and apply these to a range of words that I have given throughout the week. I will be testing the children every Monday before I give out the lists, and again on Friday once they have had the week to practise and master the new rules. Please do support your children at home with this to ensure they are as successful as they can be when it comes to those tests on Friday. I would love to see every child make progress and improve their scores from the Monday. Check your child's spelling books to see which rules we are learning this week.
Literacy: Last week we made an excellent start by familiarising ourselves with the Greek myth all about the Quest for Medusa's head. We were creating our own story maps to help us to re-tell the myth. I was so impressed with all the children with their use of adventurous language. Our grammar focus is proper nouns and when to use capital letters correctly. The children were beginning to master using capital letters for a name of a character as well as for a place. This week, we are going to focus our attention more on the mythical character of Medusa. We will be writing character profiles using adjectives to write expanded noun phrases about her.
Maths: We started our Place Value unit last week and will continue to explore 3 digit numbers this week. The children did amazingly well at showing me that they remembered the ones, tens and also hundreds in 2 and 3 digit numbers. We used arrow cards to explore how to make these numbers last week and this week, we will be using place value grids, counters and Base 10 to create more numbers.
I am also very keen to start a weekly Times Tables session with the class. We will be counting in steps of 2s, 5s and 10s, as well as 3s and 4s. But I would like the children to be able to apply this skill to Times Tables facts. We will make a start this week by completing a baseline to see how well your children can recall these times tables facts. Every week, we will focus on a new times tables and attempt to increase the pace in which we recall the facts. Some weeks we will use the laptops to login to Times Tables Rockstars. It would be super if children have used this at home before our sessions during the week. Any problems logging on, or forgotten passwords, do message me on the dojo and I can easily send it over to you.
Reading: You will have noticed that I have been listening to your children read a lot last week. I will continue to hear all the children read twice a week, keeping a close eye on the reading diaries in case there are any urgent messages for me. I will encourage your children to change their books when they feel they are ready but I will also be encouraging the children to enjoy their reading and not focus too much on rushing to change their books. Many of the year 3s are now fluent readers which is lovely to listen to so the focus is on the understanding and enjoyment of what they are reading. There is no competition to race through the colours or finish all the books in a box, rather to master the reading skills needed to tackle new and unfamiliar texts. Please do still enjoy reading books to your children in the evenings before bed, or at a time that suits you, as well as listening to your child read to you.
I will be starting phonics lessons this week for those children who need to revise some of the sounds from Phase 5 as well as those children who need to recap the skills needed for blending and segmenting words. We will also be practising our handwriting once a week to ensure we know how to join our letters correctly. Lots to fit in!
Topic: This week we will be comparing the city-states of Athens and Sparta, asking, 'Why were they so different?' We will be labelling maps and sorting facts into two groups. Then asking ourselves, 'Which state we would prefer to live in if we were in Ancient Greece?' Ask your children this week to explain the main differences to you.
Art: Last week we started our sketches of Medusa. We will be taking our time to finish these and perfect them before painting them for our display. I will add more pictures to the dojo as they are beginning to look fabulous!
Science: We began our unit all about the human body last week. We discussed our favourite foods and the importance of good nutrition. This week we will look at skeletons and sort animals into groups according to the type of skeleton they have. Do you think we have an endoskeleton, an exoskeleton or a hydrostatic skeleton? Find out this week!
I think that's all this week. We will have our usual PE lessons on MONDAY and THURSDAY. We are focussing on Football and Gymnastics this half term.
The weather looks like its going to be warm and a little sunny so please remember sun hats, but also a raincoat in case we get caught in a shower or two.
If you have any questions, queries or would just like to touch base with me, please message on the dojo.
Here's to another lovely week!