Class News

St James’ remembers

Posted on Thursday 09 November 2017 by Mr Roundtree

In November 2015, to mark 100 years since the beginning of World War 1, pupils and staff at St James’ created ceramic poppies, similar to those which surrounded the Tower of London.

This year, to commemorate Remembrance Day, we have constructed a display of our ceramic poppies in  the entrance hall, made by pupils past and present.

Come and have a look as you visit our achievement assembly tomorrow at 2.45pm.

Watch us while we work

Posted on Thursday 09 November 2017 by Mr Mills

This week, many of you came to ‘Watch us while we work’. This was a visit to school to get a flavour of what Reading, Writing and Maths teaching and learning is like in school, and hopefully to help you understand more about your child’s progress and how you can support at home.

The children loved having people watch them learn and were exceptionally keen to show off their books under the visualiser during the lesson, demonstrating just how much pride they take in their presentation and handwriting.  It’s wonderful to see how much this has improved so much in such a short space of time.

Elsewhere in the week, we’ve been building up to writing a setting description using the third and final book in Aaron Becker’s Journey series – Return.

Our penultimate stop for our ‘explorers’ topic was a dense jungle. We created some artwork in the style of Rousseau, trying to re-create the scene you see below.


The wonderful world of witches and wizards!

Posted on Saturday 04 November 2017 by Mrs Allen-Kelly

Foundation have settled quickly back into school after their half-term break.

On Monday, the children took part in a ‘talk writing’ activity, where they shared news from home about their holiday week whilst mark-making, drawing and writing. It was lovely to hear their news and also to see how much their confidence is growing when speaking to and sharing ideas with adults and friends.

Inspired by current interests, our reading area has been transformed into ‘The wonderful world of witches and wizards’. This week we focussed on Julia Donaldson’s Room on the Broom , watching the film version to pick out rhyming words, writing spells in the mark-making area and re-creating scenes in the small world area. The water-tray ‘potion-making’ inspired some fantastic imaginative play, with children describing all of the magical things they could do!

Outside, we had some pirate fun! We searched for treasure (letter sounds and words) in the sand using magnets and used our counting skills when collecting shells for the pirate ship.

Next week’s learning is linked to this weekend’s celebration of Bonfire Night. The children have been showing lots of interest in celebrations, especially birthday parties. They have also been fascinated by the magnets we used this week. Have a look on Monday morning to see if you can spot where we have used these ideas to create more fantastic learning opportunities!


A snap-happy visitor

Posted on Monday 30 October 2017 by Mr Mills

Just before the holidays, as part of our ‘Explorers’ topic, we had a very special visit from Dr David Ian Higgins, who has a serious passion for wildlife and wilderness and is a perfect example of a 21st century explorer.

David is a world class photographer and brought in some examples of his excellent photography work. However, the children were even more amazed by his camera equipment that he uses to capture such wonderful images.

Emily, described the visit: “My most favourite part was the pictures and story about the lion traffic jam because I thought it was funny that a lion was blocking the road. I was amazed how he went swimming with a whale shark and surprised how they have tiny teeth and couldn’t swallow us”.

Alfie said, “Dr Higgins made me want to swim with whale sharks and see the dolphins with phosphorescence.

Rodi added,“He inspired me to be a photographer when I grow up and travel around the world to see unusual creatures.”

We still have a few weeks remaining on our topic. Who knows where our ship could end up next.

Happy Half Term!

Posted on Friday 20 October 2017 by Mrs Allen-Kelly

Congratulations Foundation Class on a wonderful first half term!

It was lovely to share Foundation 2’s learning with you all at parents’ evenings this week. Thank you for attending.

A little reminder that Foundation 2 will need their PE kit, with all items named and in school, by Wednesday 01 November. To see the skills we have been developing this half term in our PE sessions, take a look at the picture above!

Have a fantastic week and we look forward to seeing you all when we return on Monday 30 October.

It’s the half-term holidays…

Posted on Friday 20 October 2017 by Mr Roundtree

…and so there’s no specific homework next week. This is in-line with our Homework Policy.

During the half-term, please encourage your child to read each day, even if just for 15 minutes. As well as their current book, reading comics, newspapers, websites are all good – and why not take a trip to the library!

It would also be really helpful to help your child brush up on their times tables. Children in Year 2 should know x2, x5 and x10 (and the related division facts) by the end of the year – so give them a head start now! By the end of Year 4, children should know all their tables up to 12 x 12 (and the related division facts).

And make sure they enjoy the break, too: perhaps an autumn walk, a day out, a trip to the cinema… There are lots of things going on in Leeds – check them out.

Whatever you get up to, we’re looking forward to seeing you again on Monday 30 October.


Harvest festival

Posted on Friday 13 October 2017 by Mr Roundtree

On Tuesday, Year 1 and 2 visited St James’ Church to participate in a Harvest Experience. During the experience, the children visited five different stations around the church, each with a different theme: Harvest of the Ocean, Harvest of the Earth, Harvest of the Garden, Harvest of the Flocks and Harvest of the Grain.

The children enjoyed participating in an activity at each station including making clay pots, paper boats and weaving wool. Ask your child which was their favourite activity and why.

The children were well behaved and a credit to our school. Mrs Sharp, the youth worked at St James’ Church said: “What a delight your class were today! We really enjoyed welcoming you all into church”. Well done, Year 1 and 2!


Squiggle while you wiggle!

Posted on Friday 13 October 2017 by Mrs Allen-Kelly

We’ve seen many examples of fantastic learning over the past few weeks. However, one thing the Foundation 2 children have shown lots of enthusiasm for is our weekly ‘Squiggle while you wiggle’ session. These sessions focus on gross motor movements that will develop strength in the muscles we use in our writing. Movements are made to exciting music or songs that we sing together. We then move on to using our fingers to ‘squiggle’. So far we’ve squiggled in shaving foam, with chalk on the playground, with pen and paper and with our paintbrushes. Can your child sing the movement song to you from this week’s session? (clue: dragon!)

All of Foundation have opportunities to work on their physical skills all day, every day. We have outdoor and sensory exploration alongside daily ‘dough disco’. We also have our ‘fiddly fingers’ table, which has a new activity on each week. These activities are designed to work on fine motor skills, specifically working on finger muscle strength.

We’d love to see any pictures you have of your child demonstrating their physical skills at home. This could be gross motor movements (for example: running, jumping, hopping, skipping, kicking a ball, catching) or fine motor movements (for example: using scissors, writing/ drawing, threading, using tweezers). These will be used on our movement play display board, to show all their friends some great examples of how to get our bodies moving!


Posted on Wednesday 11 October 2017 by Mr Mills

Disaster has struck

The good ship, Shamrock, was shipwrecked in a freak storm this week. All our supplies and equipment were scattered far and wide.

Luckily, we had locator beacons on them so we knew where our supplies were; we just had to find their co-ordinates and then search for them.

The children quickly found the co-ordinates of our supplies and were off into the school grounds to find them all.

I’m happy to report, all the supplies were recovered intact and we are safely back on our way.

Stay tuned for more adventures.

Remarkable readers!

Posted on Friday 06 October 2017 by Mrs Allen-Kelly

Our fabulous Foundation class have been looking at a new author and book this week- Julia Donaldson‘s The GruffaloThey have all shown lots of interest in reading with adults, on their own and in groups which is marvellous to see. We’re looking forward to sharing each child’s favourite book from home with them over the next two weeks, when they’ll take a seat in our ‘magical’ story-teller’s chair!

Next week, we’ve lots of Gruffalo themed sensory activities planned; making ‘owl ice-cream’, ‘scrambled snake’ and ‘Gruffalo crumble’. We’ll also continue our Autumn theme linked to the story. Please continue to bring in any objects you find on your own nature walks at home.