Dear Parents

This week, the highlight has undoubtedly been the trip to see the Lion King in London.  The Parents’ Association have made this possible and I would like to thank them immensely for their funding to allow such an incredible trip to happen.  The children thoroughly enjoyed the show and I know they will be keen to add some of the theatre magic to their own production, which takes place at the end of the term.

As you will see below, many other events have taken place this week – enjoy reading!

Lion King Trip

On Wednesday, the children in Years 3-6 had the most exciting trip to London! Thanks to our hard-working and generous Parents’ Association, staff and children watched a matinee performance of The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre. On entering the theatre, we were impressed by the ornate decorations and the dizzying view of the stage from the Grand Circle! The performance was spectacular with amazing choreography, beautiful singing and outstanding costumes. The children will return to rehearsals for the forthcoming school production with renewed energy and enthusiasm, having been inspired by such talented actors. Huge thanks again to the PA for purchasing the tickets and arranging the coach, to our catering team for providing every child with a huge packed lunch and to the fortunate parents who were able to accompany us on the trip. The photographs below capture the excitement of another memorable event in the Fairstead calendar!

Assembly

In celebration assembly, we were pleased to award merit certificates and House Point badges.  Well done to all!

World Book Day

This year, children and staff will celebrate World Book Day on the following dates:

  • Nursery and Reception – Thursday 7th March
  • Years 1-6 – Friday 8th March

Please see the letter that was sent out last week regarding dressing up, prizes and optional activities for children and parents. Thank you!

Nursery

This week the Yearlings children went on a trip to Waitrose, walking very sensibly with an adult as we crossed the roads, before enjoying a dinosaur biscuit and babyccino in the café to mark the end of our dinosaur topic.

Once they had finished their biscuit and babyccino, the children helped to buy some resources for the volcanoes that we have been making at nursery. They were very excited to walk through the shop, letting us know that their Mummies and Daddies go there and spotting a few items that they eat or use at home along the way. They then queued very patiently, handed over some money, and waited for the change and receipt.

Reception

The children in Reception have enjoyed launching into their new ‘Time to Grow’ topic, this week. 

Unfortunately, their visit to Scotsdales had to be postponed because of the busy roads, but this didn’t stop them from still having lots of ‘growing’ fun!  

The children were very lucky to be joined by two very special visitors in class today, to help them to link their new topic to themselves. They had good fun discussing all the things they can do now, compared to when they were babies. Mrs Sanders thoroughly enjoyed all the baby cuddles too! Thank you so much for a wonderful visit! 

The focus of the week in class has been all about the lifecycle of the sunflower, and the children have sequenced pictures and written sentences to support this. In maths, the children had great fun using sunflower seeds to extend their learning on repeating patterns. 

In the curriculum area of ‘the past’, it was time to revisit learning on Van Gogh and the children enjoyed reading a story where he was the main character. They enjoyed creating their own representations of his famous ‘Sunflowers’ in both ICT, and in art, using a range of different media. 

Thank you to Mrs Mead for being our Surprise Reader too this week, everyone thoroughly enjoyed your wonderful story and super voices!  

Year 1

We have started the minibeast strand of our ‘Megabeasts and Minibeasts’ topic this week. In English, we have been reading the book ‘Snail Trail’ by Ruth Brown. We really enjoyed this book because it felt like the snail had been on a real adventure around a big town, but in fact, he had only travelled in a very small circle around his garden!

We learned about alliteration and came up with our own alliterative names! After designing our own snails, we collected some natural and man-made objects that our snails could navigate on their own adventures. We made story maps of our snail’s adventures ready for our story writing next week!

In RE, we have been learning about the events in Holy Week that led up to Easter Sunday. Palm Sunday marks the start of Holy Week for Christians.​ Christians feel happy on this day because they are praising Jesus, but also sad because they know it was only one week later that Jesus died.​ We decorated palm leaves with words and pictures we associate with Palm Sunday. We practised waving them while shouting, ‘Hosanna!

Year 2

Welcome back! Year 2 have been exploring African traditional tales this week. We have learned that Anansi the spider is the trickster of the African story culture and that he tricked the hornets, the leopard and the snake to become ‘King of the Stories’! Next, we read part of an Anansi story. We mapped out the beginning of the story as a group and created actions to help us retell the story. Then we broke into groups and wrote the next sections of the story as a picture map and each group taught the rest of the class their actions! On Friday, we wrote the middle of the story and learned all about how greedy Anansi got his long, thin legs. In maths we are continuing our look at multiplication and division. We have been focusing on problem solving and reasoning this week, which has been a tricky task! Please do remember to log into TT Rockstars and practise your fact fluency and speed. On Friday afternoon we learned about African masks and collaged our own interpretations – they look outstanding! Watch this space for photos when they have dried!

Year 4

We started our new science topic this week by thinking about the different states of matter.  The class had great fun looking at the difference between solids, liquids and gases and thinking about their properties.  We had some interesting discussions in class about why sand is not a liquid, whether you can pour gases and whether whipped cream is a solid.  Then, to demonstrate their understanding, the children went outside and acted out how the particles moved in different states.  This was helped by a link that is shared in the class Team.  They threw themselves into the activity with perfectly structured particles for a solid and far-flung particles for the gas.  Fortunately, none were lost.  We will continue our study of the states of matter when we return from our residential next week.

Year 5

Year 5 finished off their investigations into properties and changes of materials by looking at irreversible changes with chemical reactions.  They investigated what would happen when adding bicarbonate of soda to distilled vinegar and to their absolute delight watched with unbridled mirth as it covered the room in bubbling vinegar.  In take two of the experiment and another experiment into how to make plastic from milk and distilled vinegar, the children demonstrated that they improved in their understanding of chemical changes.  Happily, the stench of recently spilled vinegar subsided quickly.  The sting of having made such an explosive error did not, however.

Have a lovely weekend!

Michael Radford