Message sent from:

Year 1

Science – What do Plants Need to Grow?

This week we have continued our Plants topic by discussing what plants need to grow healthily. The children gave their suggestions, and planted some cress seeds of their own to look after. We also created a class experiment to observe how plants grow with or without certain things (water, light or the correct temperature). We made predictions and will be recording our observations and findings throughout the week in our cress diaries!


Finished Bug Hotel!

This week the children used their designs to complete our class Bug Hotel. The children thought carefully about materials and placement to make sure they created suitable habitats. We even welcomed our first guest whilst we were building! A beetle must have been hiding in one of our pinecones or bamboo sticks. He seems to have settled in nicely already! We are excited to see what insects and other creatures we can attract.


John Blanke

This week the children continued our Kings, Queens and Castles topic by learning about a royal trumpeter in the courts of Henry VII and Henry VIII called John Blanke. As a class we discussed his role as a musician and the kinds of events he may have performed at (there were many occasions, as Henry VIII loved a party!). We also had a great discussion about diversity and inclusion, and the children showed respect and understanding when discussing our individual differences and the things that make us ‘us’.



In PE this term, the children have been working on movement and dance techniques and skills. We read The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister, and began creating shapes based on the story. The children have transformed into coral, sharks, the Rainbow Fish and even a shoal of fish as a whole class! The children are now working in groups to create a short dance routine using music that links to the story.


Maths – Sharing into Equal Groups

Year 1 have started to look at division this week. We have been using what we know about odd and even numbers to predict and investigate whether a number would split equally into two groups. Here the children had a 100 square and were asked to test some values and colour them in if the number split into two equal groups. The children soon realised that they were only colouring in even numbers!


Bug Hotel

As part of our Living Things and Their Habitats topic this half term, the children began designing a ‘room’ for a Bug Hotel with a partner this week. We discussed the microhabitats that different insects (and amphibians!) live in and what natural materials we might need to use and why. The children created some wonderfully detailed designs, and we are excited to start building!


Measuring Length

This week the children have continued measuring by looking at length. We used Cuisenaire rods to measure the lengths of strips of paper before beginning to use rulers to measure in cm.


Forest School – Nests

This week at Forest School the children in year one were bird watching and had a woodland bird treasure hunt. They used the identification sheets to identify the birds that live around our school. They really enjoyed making big bird nests in groups working collaboratively to find the materials and build the nests. Some birds had some very luxurious nests.


Habitat Dioramas

Year 1 have been learning about living things and their habitats! We discussed micro-habitats and then ventured outside of our local environment to investigate larger habitats such as oceans, woodland, rainforests, and deserts.

The children discussed these habitats by grouping animals into the correct environment. They did this by working out which habitats had the things that each animal needed to survive, e.g. food, shelter and correct temperature. The children then used what they had learnt to create their own habitat dioramas!



This term in Art and Design the children have been looking at portraits. We opened up our sketch books and practiced some pencil techniques such as shading, swirling, zig zag and repeated lines.


Messy Maths

We started to look at volume in Year 1 this week. The children were challenged colour in cups to show the volume of water (and for some children, pink strawberry milkshake!) in the cups using the language of ‘empty, full, nearly empty, half full or nearly full’. The children then experimented with cups and water and had to fill them up (or empty them) to get them to the right volume description.



Year 1 had a great time working in teams to complete relay races! They had to race to the centre of the cones to collect a piece of equipment and bring it back to their teams. They were travelling to the middle in different ways; slalom (in and out of cones), running straight, hopping on stepping-stones or jumping over hurdles. The children cheered on their teams and worked really well together!


Year 1’s New Arrivals!

On Tuesday morning we had a very exciting delivery of an incubator with 11 chicken eggs! They arrived on day 20 of their 21 day incubation period. We discussed all of the important information we needed to know to create a safe environment for our chicks, and spent the day quietly and calmly ‘cheeping’ back to some of our eggs that had already started to hatch. On Wednesday morning we were welcomed into our classroom by chirping from 6 fluffy chicks who had hatched overnight! The children were so excited and now can’t wait until we can safely hold them when they are ready to leave the incubator.


Habitat Hunt

We started our ‘Living Things and their Habitats’ science topic this term by venturing outside to look for ‘living’, ‘non-living’ and ‘never been alive’ creatures and/or objects. We very carefully observed the various habitats we could find in our Forest School area and gently collected some creatures into observation pots. The children we very gentle with the delicate creatures and had lots of questions about what they had seen!

We then grouped and categorised the creatures/objects based on whether they were living, dead or had never been alive.


Christmas Church Visits

This week Year 1 had a wonderful time visiting our local Church of St John the Baptist. The children arrived at school dressed up, then our shepherds, wise men and angels set off on a walk.  We had made ‘Good News’ angels with prayers thanking God for the birth of Jesus. The children carried these to the church and hung them in the Yew trees for everyone to enjoy. We met Reverend Sarah by the Church doors who told us a wonderful story and shared some words from the Bible. The children got to see a lovely Nativity Scene and place a candle underneath.


Monster Finger Puppets

This term in our Design and Technology lessons, Year 1 are learning about puppets! We have discussed the different types of puppets; marionette, rod, finger and hand puppets. We then made our own monster finger puppets! We discussed the type of materials you could use and chose to use felt. We then cut out the shapes and decorated them with googly eyes, sequins and pompoms!


South America – Mardi Gras in Brazil

This week we carried on our Continents topic by travelling to South America! We looked specifically at Brazil, and spoke about the many features of this beautiful and diverse country. We discussed the Amazon Rainforest and the amazing creatures you may see, and we even learnt some Portuguese! We learnt about Mardi Gras celebrations and carnivals, and made our very own carnival mask using green, purple and gold to represent faith, justice and power.


Skip2Bfit Workshop

Today Year 1 took part in a Skip2bfit workshop.  The children learnt how to perfect their skipping skills and were taught why it is so important to have a growth mindset.

We began by skipping to upbeat and motivational music for 2 minutes, and we recorded how many skips we could do in that time. We then had a little rest, and set about trying again to see if we could beat our previous score. This was a great activity for the children as they competed against themselves to make an improvement.

The children were then given a box of blueberries, and were asked to reuse and recycle their pots. The children were also given leaflets with some more information and a tasty smoothie recipe!


Anti-bullying Week 2020

In Year 1 this week we are thinking about Anti-bullying week. As a class we have agreed that we need to work as a team to spread kindness, and unite to stop any type of unkind behaviour.

We spoke about times where someone has done something that made us feel happy, special and supported. The children each wrote down a memory on a brick that formed part of our ‘Kindness Wall’. We are hoping to build this wall as high as we can, by writing down any act of kindness that we recognise this week.

Forest School

This half term the children have started Forest School Lessons with Mrs Farrington. The children were very excited to get dressed into their warm clothes and venture out into nature!

We completed a hunt for wooden animal discs which were hidden around the Forest School area. The children then worked with each other to create groups with their animals. We had groups of mammals, birds, animals who hibernate, herbivores and nocturnal animals.

The children then separated into groups to do some practical work. One group made a ‘hibernaculum’ (a shelter) for hedgehogs, another worked with gimlets to create animals out of conkers, and the last group created wonderful matchboxes full of objects they had found.


Remembrance Day 2020

We have spoken a lot this week about Remembrance Day, and the children have learnt about why we wear poppies as an act of remembrance for the brave people that fought to keep us safe. The children took part in a two minute silence, and made some wonderful poppies that we displayed on our classroom door.



This half term our school value is Trust. In Year 1 we have been discussing how important it is to be trustworthy, and what it means to be honest. We have shared our thoughts on those people that trust us, and those that we trust. We made Trust Cones to show all of the wonderful people in our communities that we trust, to keep us all safe, happy and healthy.


Stained Glass Windows

In Art & Design this week we have been looking at Paper Art. We have made Stained Glass Windows using cellophane and tissue paper. We made beautiful designs by taking inspiration from windows in Churches and other buildings. This Artwork has really brightened up our classroom!


When the Wind Blows – Poetry and Sound Effects

We have started to look at Poetry during our English lessons this week. The poem we have been working on is called ‘When the Wind Blows’ by John Foster. We have been looking at the descriptive language used by the author, from lines such as ‘curtains swish, papers scatter’ and ‘doors slam, windows rattle’. The children used various objects to create sound effects for the verses of the poem, and performed their sounds to an audience. The children were very creative, some children even invented new instruments!



This week in PE the children have been practising their skills using javelins. The children were shown how to stand with one foot in front of the other, ready to throw their javelin at a hoop at the back of the hall.  We definitely saw some budding athletes, watch this space!


We are Animal Detectives!

This week the children have been using clues outside to identify animals living in their local environment. They have been using their senses to listen to sounds such as birds tweeting, and to look for clues that might suggest an animal had popped by! We worked together to share what we had spotted, we even found a burrow!


We are Treasure Hunters!

In IT this week the children have been learning how to programme Bee-bots! We have written algorithms with our partners, and tested these to see if we could find some buried treasure. At times our algorithms sent our Bee-bots into the lakes or swamps, so we worked together as a class team to ‘debug’ our algorithms. This meant that we could identify where our robot was going wrong, and steer him back towards the treasure!


Great shot! - Archery

This week the Hertford and Ware School Sports Partnership came to visit St John’s and they arranged a variety of sporting activities for all of the children to participate in. The Year 1 children had the opportunity to try out Archery, which was great fun! We then tried out an activity called Boccia, using hoops and weighted balls.


Autumn Leaves – fall for this beautiful artwork!

This week in Art & Design the children have been working on some vibrant Autumn leaf collages. We have been thinking about the change in seasons from Summer to Autumn, and discussed how the leaves change their colours and fall from the trees. The children’s artwork now has pride of place on a display in the dining hall!


Wild and Wonderful – The day we become Zoo Designers

During our science lessons, the children in Year 1 have enjoyed learning all about wild and domestic animals. After discussing our favourite animals and making a bar chart to display and discuss the results, it was time to become Zoo Designers. In partners the children planned and created some wonderful Zoo Maps to include enclosures of some of their favourite creatures!

Hit enter to search