Please continue to have fun with your activity passport and remember you can always email photos or bring in homework to share with the class. We’ve practised all our lower-case letters now so maybe the children can show you how they form the letters at home.
We have had some queries regarding reading both in school and at home. At this point we are only a month into the new term and now that we have established our daily routines, we are using the time to identify any gaps in learning and plan appropriate learning activities in reading, writing and phonics. Please rest assured that reading is a regular activity in the classroom with numerous opportunities for each child to read daily. This might be an adult listening to a child read, whole class guided reading sessions, daily phonics sessions, in fact every lesson has an element of reading. Written records of reading, whether it is an adult hearing a child read, activities on Bug Club, children sharing a book together or taking books home, are kept within school and used to assess the next steps in learning. This record replaces the reading diary that was sent home, but we welcome your feedback through our many communication channels as to the progress you have made with your child's reading at home. We will share your child's progress in school in the Autumn term report, which you will receive at Parents' Evening. Children are now becoming more familiar with selecting their own books, which they can do as often as they need to. We are developing their comprehension skills and preparing resources and ideas appropriate for your child, which we will also share with you at Parents' Evening.
In the meantime we encourage reading at home in whatever format you can create, e.g. reading books, magazines and comics for pleasure, reading labels or cereal packets, putting subtitles on the TV and also seeing their parents read, which shows children that reading is a lifelong skill that continues into adulthood. At the end of Key Stage 1 all pupils are expected to read and spell the Year 1 and Year 2 common exception words. We recommend ICT Games' Look, Cover, Write, Check as an effective strategy to learn these words. If you would like to practise letter and number formation at home this would be invaluable as we have noticed that many children have found their own ways to form letters and numbers in class! We are well aware that the cursive style takes a little longer to master, but it is well worth persevering as it will help the children with joined-up handwriting and spelling as they learn how one letter flows into another. Eventually they will write more fluently and this reduces fatigue when they start writing at length. Other activities such as holding a knife and fork correctly, cutting food, holding a pencil correctly, threading beads, using tweezers and scissors will improve the children's fine motor skills which in turn helps their handwriting.