Autumn Newsletter, Year 2
Welcome to Fox Class! We hope you have all enjoyed a wonderful summer holiday and that the children are ready for a busy term ahead. This newsletter outlines the curriculum areas to be covered this term as well as ways you can help us to ensure the children get the most from their time in Year 2.
Reading will continue to be a key focus for your children’s learning to enable them to access a wider range of reading material; listening to your child read and discussing their understanding of their reading are both important to support their development. We will be giving daily classroom time to reading as well as teaching phonics daily, supported by handwriting and spelling practise. Together we will be looking at the features of traditional tales, including fairy stories, and reading some lovely texts related to where we live and linked to habitats in science, beginning with Town Mouse, Country Mouse and moving on to The Bog Baby. Children will be learning to differentiate between sentence types and to build increasingly varied and specific sentences of their own. We will also be writing poetry and studying information texts related to our history topic after half term.
This term, we will be consolidating the children’s understanding of number size and place value, establishing their knowledge of number bonds to 20 and ability to double numbers to 15. We will be building on the children’s existing mental maths skills, with an emphasis on times tables (x10, x5 and x2). The children will work on addition and subtraction of single and 2-digit numbers, recognising the inverse relationship between the two operations. They will be measuring length, using the language of position and direction (clockwise, anti-clockwise) and learning to tell the time to the quarter hour. They will also learn the properties of 2-d shapes, sorting them and identifying right angles. In addition, they will learn to recognise, write and find ½, ¼, and ¾ fractions. The children’s learning will be re-enforced with practical work in the classroom; using money regularly outside school to make given amounts will support their classroom learning.
History and Geography
We begin the year with a geographical focus, studying our local area and the natural environment. We will be visiting Clavering park before designing our own parks for the village and plotting our routes to school. We will look at maps and aerial views of the village, comparing the details evident in both. After half term, we will be learning about changes in everyday life in Britain in living memory.
To begin the term, we will be learning about how humans and other animals are born, grow and change and what we need to survive and be healthy. The children will classify different kinds of animal babies, learn about the basic needs that are shared by humans and animals, and research the differing needs of animals within our care. Focusing on their own experiences, the children will explore the need for humans to eat a varied diet, to keep themselves clean and to take regular exercise. Throughout the unit, the learning will encourage the children to make positive choices that contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Later in the term, we will learn about a variety of habitats and the plants and animals that live there. The children will learn to tell the difference between things that are living and dead and things that have never been alive, and apply this in a range of contexts. They will observe a local habitat and the creatures living there, investigating conditions in local microhabitats and how they affect the minibeasts within them. They will research a range of global habitats and how the living things that live there are suited to their environments.
This term, the children will aim to create, test and debug algorithms, and prepare to use the language of Turtle Logo. The children begin by giving and following instructions to move forward and make quarter turns, followed by walking different rectilinear shapes. The language is extended to use the main Turtle Logo commands. Children will create, text and debug algorithms for shapes and routes around school in preparation for using the commands in the Turtle Logo application.
Art and DT
The focus of our art this term is the creation of mixed media collages (inspired by the text ‘Window’) and the use of our sketchbooks to develop our ability to observe and sketch detail in our natural environment.
In DT, we will be making a miniature playground for the village, linked to our geography visit to the park; the project will require the children to measure carefully, to choose appropriate materials and to consider how best to cut and join the materials to ensure stability and strength. We will also be making fruit kebabs in food technology, considering the health benefits of eating fruit and assessing our own consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables.
RE and PSHE
In RE, we will be considering special things in nature and special places, with an additional focus on Judaism and Buddhism. Our PSHE learning will lead us to think about citizenship and values, discussing how we can make a positive contribution and considering our feelings and relationships with others.
At the beginning of the term, we will be developing the children’s ability to discriminate between longer and shorter sounds, and to use them to create interesting sequences of sound. Later on, we will be learning to recognise the difference between beat and rhythm and to perform with a sense of beat.
Year 2 has swimming this term and this will take place on a Monday morning. The pool requires each child to wear a hat as well as their own swimming costume/trunks. Whilst additional adults accompany the children to the pool, we would appreciate it if you could work with your own children to improve their speed and independence getting changed. (For the girls, please consider a ‘no tights Monday’ dress code for ease at the pool!) The children will need to keep their PE kits in school for PE on a Wednesday afternoon. Each child will need trainers suitable for use on the field as well as the playground and warm outer layers to be worn over their PE shorts and T-shirts, especially as the weather turns colder.
In addition to hearing your child read whenever possible, as the term continues, the children will be set spellings to learn each week on a Friday, ready for a test on the following Friday; please assist them with look, cover, write, check activities to consolidate their learning.
In year 2, children will now normally have one piece of homework to complete each fortnight in addition to their weekly spellings. Homework activities will focus on reading-related tasks to be recorded in Learning Logs. We may occasionally set additional homework to support classroom learning but this will be the exception rather than the rule. Any whole school homework will also be sent home on a Friday where possible. Please support your child to ensure that they understand what has been asked of them and that their work is clearly and neatly completed.
If you have any concerns or issues you would like to discuss regarding your child, we are always available at the end of the day (Mrs Rudkin on Mondays and Tuesdays and Mrs Hall on Thursdays and Fridays) so please don’t hesitate to ask us any questions.
A plea for help
Are you able to spare any of your time to come in and listen to children read in school or to help us with trips out of school? Please complete and return the attached slip to let us know of any particular areas of interest and potential availability so that we can look at putting together a timetable of support and arranging clearance as necessary – many thanks.
Mrs Rudkin, Mrs Hall, Mrs Woodman, Mrs Thomas and Mrs Abrahams