blog week ending 11th September

Annnnnnd relax!
It is the end of a super first full week in reception and we couldn't be happier with how the children have settled into Pear class and adapted to our new school routines.
You may find for the first few weeks that there will be reports from your children that they haven't done anything all day, they didn't play with anybody and they didn't eat any dinner! This couldn't be further from the truth, but we do find that the sheer exhaustion of the first few weeks is overwhelming and communication after school is at best, limited. Unfortunately, you will bear the brunt of that tiredness with a sometimes unhappy or weepy child. Please rest assured that the children are happy and smiling throughout the day and if there were any problems, we would be quick to let you know.
Luckily, the children in Pear class have a lot to say whilst they are at school and we are finding friendships are beginning to form and some real characters are shining through! I would like to thank you all for bearing with us over these first few weeks. There are always initial teething problems as we welcome the children into our busy classroom, but there has been the added pressure of the new Covid procedures that have meant things haven't always ran smoothly. Please can I ask that if you do wish to talk to us about anything, you either do it via my email (which I check nightly) or at the end of the day after we have dismissed the children .
 These first few weeks, our focus has been on settling the children into Pear class -  learning about our golden class rules and enjoying exploring time in the classroom both inside and out. We have not started our usual timetable, but have instead been focusing on our feelings and how our actions might hurt others in our class.
Our focus story has been The Colour Monster, who starts off at the beginning of the story feeling all mixed up and confused, only to be helped by putting his different colours (emotions) into separate jars. This story helped the children understand the concept of feelings as the story makes them tangible by changing them into a colour and an object. This in turn has led us to create our own morning feelings check in, where the children choose a coloured button/buttons and put it into the correct coloured feeling jar. This helps us as we then know which child may need some extra attention, if they are feeling worried, or which child has come to school feeling happy and confident. 
We have enjoyed lots of circle time this week, where we have discussed scenarios that could lead the colour monster to feel each of the colours. We had lots of fun pulling the different mood faces but we all found it difficult doing our angry face for very long!! This helped the children to draw pictures in their own feelings jars. We have also painted our own monsters, colour sorted mason jars, re-told the story in the reading nook and explored colour through fine motor activities.
Alongside all of this fun we have been learning about the properties of 2D shapes - creating our own  funny shape faces in the classroom. There is a fantastic base of knowledge with Pear class children, it is clear that your home schooling has been successful! We would encourage you to continue to reinforce this knowledge and understanding on your walk to school picking out shapes in the environment with your children. What shape is that house made from? How many squares can you see? How many sides does the roof on the house have? Does that car wheel look like a circle - does it have any sides - why/why not?
Our days have been filled with lots more fun; building dens around our den house, playing with fairies, dinosaurs and cars in our small world area, pouring potions in the water tray and creating delicious cakes in the mud kitchen - no day has been the same! We even managed to squeeze in our first PE session practicing lots of gross motor skills like jumping and landing on both feet, running in zigzags and walking backwards on our tiptoes! We have offset our morning active dance sessions with some afternoon yoga  - you may have been met with namaste and ommmmm reathing at home already!
You may have also heard about Pear class magical door. The children have followed their own learning lead this week with their attempts to open the door. They have been using secret codes, developing their mark making skills to draw and write messages to whomever is behind the door and creating magical potions to try and open the door. It has been fantastic to see them work as a team with every child demonstrating some level of interest in this venture that began by me simply showing them a set of keys and a door and saying I wonder....?
Please read the class newsletter for information about this term and the equipment needed at school. I would ask you to remember to label all items and remember that a water bottle is needed daily. As we have Forest school Fridays and we access the field daily, wellingtons are imperative. Our milk list is still small so should you wish your child to be added, please let the office staff know so that you can be added to my list. 
Well done to Jessica De LA Mothe who was last weeks Star of the week for settling into Pear class with a big smile on her face!
Once again, thank you so much for all of your support and good nature. Enjoy your weekend and we will see you all Monday!
Laurie Horne-Smith
Class Teacher