Spring 2019

Happy New Year everyone!  We hope you have enjoyed your family time together over Christmas. We have a whirlwind tour planned for this half term which will be filled with adventure!  We are working together to build upon the friendships we have made in Autumn term and learning more about ourselves and each other. 

This half term we will be learning about dinosaurs and fossils and even blasting off into outer space. Then we say farewell to the landlubbers and board a mighty vessel into the blue as we learn about the lives of pirates and creatures that live under the sea.   

Family is such an important part of everyone’s life, especially for children.  That is why we have been welcoming parents and careers into our setting to join in with us at school. 

After the half term holidays, we will be learning all about Fairy tales such as Snow White, Goldilocks, Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood. We will be travelling to the future in our time machine and creating new inventions!  Towards the end of term we will be reflecting on the Easter story and what holy week means to us, our families, school and church.

Personal, Social and Emotional Development

As the year progresses we plan activities, as well have continuous provision, which encourages the children to really blossom in this area of development.  It is in the Early Years that we really have the opportunity to develop the children’s positive attitudes towards school, friends, and themselves.  We will be setting challenging tasks to encourage the children to persevere and not give up.   We are broadening the range of independent activities to build confidence when trying new things.   And as always we are helping children to make meaningful relationships with their peers, finding their own solutions for any conflicts they may have.

Communication and Language

Now that we are able to maintain our attention and focus for much longer, we are working on having meaningful two-way conversations with others in the class.  We are trying to listen carefully to what someone is saying, then make a comment or ask a question based on what they have said.

Physical Development

Balance, agility and poise are our aims as we beam, vault and roll our way through our Gymnastics unit this half term.  We will be focussing on jumping and landing safely, negotiating space, manoeuvring our bodies and balancing.  Exercise and nutrition focuses will keep us busy at the beginning of the second half term as we learn the importance of good health, including physical exercise, and a healthy diet.  We want the children to be able to talk about ways to keep healthy and safe.  Let’s not forget that St Matthews is a healthy school, and that we have a snack bar in the classroom where fruit, water and milk is freely available.


As you all know, we run a daily synthetic phonics programme called Read, Write, Inc.  This programme has already proven very successful this year as so many of our children are now blending independently.  We will continue with our Thursday guided reading sessions, which means that we read with the teacher in a small group. The book is matched to the amount of sounds that we know and is taken home that night for us to practice. Parents can help by reading the chosen book with their child every night (Friday - Wednesday) and then returning the book to school each Wednesday. This system creates continuity between home and school, ensuring that the child is taking a familiar book that is appropriately levelled to read to their loved one at home, hopefully encouraging a love of reading that we want all children to experience.

Expressive Arts and Design

Children have constant access to creative equipment, such as paint, musical instruments, paper, card and craft materials, and really make use of this! We also plan for focus art projects every week that links into our theme e.g. for Space week we are making our own rockets, asteroids and reading books about all about Space. These activities all help children to develop skills by singing songs, making music, dancing, and experiment with ways of changing music. They are learning to safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function.