Things to know about KS1
Reading at home.
Reading is an essential skill and requires daily practice for your child to become a confident and fluent reader.
Please read with your child at home for 10 – 15 minutes every day. Record when you read with your child in their home reading record (either a yellow or blue book). Don’t just focus on word reading; where possible; ask your children questions about what they have read. Here are some suitable questions that can help develop understanding.
• What happened first, second, last?
• What do you think will happen next? Why?
• Has anything like this happened to you?
• Who are the characters in the story? What can you tell me about them? How are they different to _______?
• How is the character feeling at this part of the story?
• Why do you think this character said/did this?
• Why do you think these words are written differently? (Bold, capitals, italics etc).
For less advanced readers, it is important that your child has a positive experience of books; therefore, it is often useful to read harder, more stimulating texts to your child which you then discuss together. This is particularly useful if your child is demotivated with regards to their reading.
Conversely, if your child is an advanced reader, it may not be necessary for them to read directly to you, allow them time to read independently and discuss what they are reading with you afterwards. Please still record when your child has read in their record.
If you would like to work with your child at home these are some activities you could focus on.
Times tables - It is important that your child can recall the 2, 5, and 10 times tables quickly and out of order without the use of aids. We will give your child a sheet with the relevant times table for them to learn at home. Some activities to help are:
• counting in that number from 0 (e.g. 2,4,6,8,10…etc).
• Using traditional times tables chants (1x2 is 2, 2x2 is 4 etc).
• Using songs and rhymes to help remember (there are many CDs and books to support this available in shops).
Remember to check if your child can recall facts quickly and out of order.
Each week children in Year 2 will be given a list of age appropriate spellings. These will be stuck into your child’s green spelling book. Please encourage your child to practise these at home.
If you wish to extend your child further, get them to use the words in punctuated sentences.
For children who are finding it difficult to retain the spellings, you can support/supplement their learning through a range of more fun, play-based activities. For example:
• Writing on big sheets of paper with felt-tips, paint or other materials.
• Writing using your finger in a sand-tray.
• Writing in chalk on the path or patio.
• Using a paint or writing programme on a phone or tablet to write out the words.
• Using shaving foam to write the words on the bathroom tiles.
• Playing hide and seek with the words around the house.
• Making silly songs, mnemonics or poems to help them learn trickier words (BECAUSE = Big Elephants Can Always Understand Small Elephants).
Although we will not be testing your child directly on these spellings at school, we will be assessing whether or not they have learnt them through their general reading and writing within the classroom.
Optional Tasks (TAT):
Every term we will send home a range of suggested activities related to the topic. These will often be larger, more creative tasks that require a longer length of time. These tasks are COMPLETELY OPTIONAL and are designed to give ideas if your child is particularly enthused by the topic. They are a great way for you and your child to spend time sharing what they have been learning at school. Any completed tasks will be shared in class and your child will be given credit for completing them.
A GENERAL NOTE ABOUT HOMEWORK:
Although following up school-based learning is powerful and is shown to help children progress, we recognise that it can be difficult for parents to get their child to complete all homework tasks. We want all children to see learning as fun and not a chore; spending time on other pursuits and play is equally as important. Therefore, we would like you and your child to prioritise daily reading. If you have any questions, or require support with your child’s homework, please see their class teacher.
There are some brilliant apps for Android and IOS to support with spellings, times tables and other areas of learning. For a small cost, I would thoroughly recommend ‘Squeebles’. This really makes the learning of spellings and times tables fun!!
Other Important Information
Please ensure that your child has their PE kit in school on the days indicated below. PE is a compulsory part of the National Curriculum and all children are required to take part unless we have received written notification to the contrary. As always, please make sure all your child’s kit is clearly labelled with their full name. If you need assistance with PE kits, please speak to your child’s teacher.
The current PE days are as follows:
Class 4 – Tuesday and Friday
Class 5 – Tuesday and Wednesday
Class 6 – Tuesday and Friday
To help encourage your child’s independence, we are asking that (wherever possible) you say goodbye at the classroom doors. This helps the children to organise themselves and allows lessons to start promptly.
As always, if your child struggles to cope with this, is upset or you wish to speak to your child’s teacher please come into class as normal! You are always welcome!
Water bottles and cups
It is important that your child drinks regularly throughout the school day. Please make sure your child has either a cup labelled with their name in school or a named water bottle with a sports lid. These are preferable as they allow your child to take their water to PE lessons – especially important when on the field on a sunny day.