Year R

Week beginning 10/06/2024 - Oooh arrr Me Hearties!! This children have had a fantastic time learning about pirates this week! They learned about famous pirates, the parts of a pirate ship, investigated floating and sinking objects,  they made their own pirate hats and eye patches, carefully read words on coins before sorting them into 'treasure words' and 'fake words', made up their own pirate stories using the small world pirate ships and figurines and drew their own treasure maps with X marks the spot!

Week beginning 3/6/2024 - UTW - This week, we learned all about the shapes and sizes of different dinosaurs’ feet and footprints! We found out that a Compsognathus foot was only 7.5cm long, a Tyrannosaurus Rex’s foot was 86cm long, an Allosaurus’s foot was 84cm long, and a Brachiosaurs’ foot was a whopping 260cm long!

We talked about the length of our own feet and decided the easiest way to look at this was to draw around our shoes and compare. We then decided to find out how many of our feet could fit inside the dinosaur footprints! We found the size of each dinosaur foot using a meter ruler and Miss James carefully drew the footprint shapes onto large pieces of paper.

Our Predictions & Results

We shared our predictions with the class for each dinosaur footprint. The children took turns to add their shoes to the inside of the footprint shape until it was full!





Between 1 and 9

Half of 1 shoe

Tyrannosaurus Rex

Between 20 and 100



Between 10 and 100



Between 100 and 300

We didn’t have enough shoes!!

Week beginning 20/05/2024 – In preparation for sports day, we have been practising the skills needed to take part in the sports day events, including egg and spoon, balancing a quoit on our head, sprinting, hurdles and the hoop race! We were also very lucky to have a visit from ‘Ricky Dance’ this week. He taught the children a fantastic routine to ‘Dance Monkey’. They listened to Ricky so well and copied the moves brilliantly. Ricky was really impressed!

Week beginning 13/05/2024 - After learning about how real fossils are formed (when an animal or plant dies, gets buried in the ground and hardens to rock) and looking at photos of famous fossils, we made our own salt-dough fossils! We helped to mix, roll out and cut the dough before choosing a dinosaur to imprint. We pushed our dinosaur into the dough and pulled it back out, leaving a dinosaur shaped mark.

Week beginning 6/5/2024 - Continuous Provision - The children have LOVED the first week of our dinosaur topic! We have encouraged them to visit lots of the learning areas in the classrooms, to make sure they are developing a range of skills. Some activities from this week include matching the dinosaur to its skeleton, acting out dinosaur stories with the figures, printing dinosaur footprints with paint, reading simple descriptive sentences and matching them to the corresponding picture and categorising dinosaurs into: number of feet, land/sea and colour.

Week beginning 29/4/2024 - Literacy and Understanding the World - The children have really enjoyed learning about space this week! We have been using non-fiction books to gather facts about the sun and moon and then the children wrote what they found out in their own words. Our fictional text for this week was called 'Whatever Next'. The children had to unscramble and sequence pictures of key events from the story and then wrote sentences to match some of the pictures. It is wonderful to see the progress the children have made in their writing; often writing some or all of their sentences independently!

Week beginning 22/4/2024 - Maths - This week in maths the children (in pairs) started by each choosing a random number card to 20 and making a cube tower to represent that number. They then used the stem sentences: ‘…… is more than ……’ or ‘…… is fewer than ……’ to compare their two numbers / towers.

As part of their small group activity, each child was provided with number cards to 0 - 20 (mixed up). They created cube towers to represent each number then placed the number cards and matching towers in order from fewest to most.

Week beginning 15/4/2024 - Music

We started a new music topic this week – Big Bear Funk by Joanna Magona. The children loved this song and thought the words were really funny, especially the part about the funky chicken! The children listened out for instruments they recognised and were encouraged to reflect on whether or not they enjoyed it and why. The children then shared their thoughts on the song:

M – I think it was a lady singing.

D – I could hear a guitar.

K – At the end it said ‘Big Bear Funk’.

N – The pitch was high.

After listening to the song during the first part of our lesson, we began learning the words to Big Bear Funk in small chunks to help us remember them. We learned that the parts of the song are called the verse, bridge and chorus. Some parts of the song are really fast, so we tried our best to keep in time and not get the words muddled up! One part of the song required the children to listen to and copy clapping rhythms. They were brilliant at this!

When the children were comfortable with the words to the song, we shared ideas for actions they could do to the different parts of the song. The children worked in pairs or groups to share their own dance/action ideas with their peers before sharing them with the class. They danced like the bear by pointing their finger up and down, danced like the chicken by flapping their ‘chicken wings’ and danced like the money by pretending to swing through the trees!

The children then had an opportunity to perform a section of the song to the class, trying their best to sing the words and do their actions at the same time. Lots of children were keen to perform, which was lovely to see. The end of the song had a section for the children to do some ‘freestyle’ dance moves, they were fantastic!



Week beginning 8/4/2024 - This week we have been fruit tasting! We read a lovely story called Handa's Surprise - follow the link below to read the story together at home!

Can you remember the fruits we tasted at school?

What happened to Handa and her fruit in the story?

Which fruits did you like the best and why?


Handa's Surprise Story




Week beginning 18/3/2024 - We visited St Andrew’s church to understand what is special about the church for those that belong to the Christian faith. For lots of our children, it was the first time that they had visited a church. We were amazed by the size of the building and how beautiful it was inside. The children learned about the cross symbol, stained glass windows, the font and how it is used to Christen and baptise babies. Thank you to Father Edmund  for this lovely learning opportunity and a big well done to our children who demonstrated very respectful and sensible behaviour during our trip!

Week beginning 18./3/2024 - We have been working on writing sentences in our Literacy lessons and this week, the children wrote some super instructions on how to plant a seed! They tried hard to use a capital letter at the start of the sentence, sound out the words using their phonics, use finger spaces between the words and a full stop at the end of the sentence.

Week beginning 11/3/2024 -  After learning about how to grow a plant and the ways we can care for them (e.g. water them, put them near sunlight), the children planted their very own bean seeds! They scooped the soil carefully with the trowel and gently placed the seed in the pot before adding some more soil to cover it. They then added a little water with the watering can and put their pot near the window. The children are so excited to see their bean plants begin to grow!


Week beginning 11/3/2024 - PE - As part of our ball skills unit this week, we were using racquets to control different sized balls. We used the racquet to carefully move balls along straight, zig-zag and curvy lines before practising pushing balls into a goal. We were so sensible with the racquets and loved shooting the balls between the cones!

Week beginning 4/3/2024 - The children looked fantastic in their World Book Day costumes and had a ball in their session with Cat Weatherill. She loved their performance of her poem, Big Blue Shark and they learned some of her other stories and poems, too!

Week beginning 4/3/2024 - As part of our World Book Day learning, we learned the words and actions to a poem called ‘Big Blue Shark’ by Cat Weatherill, who will be visiting us later in the week. We talked about what some of the poem words mean and in small groups, matched up the rhyming words from the poem. This really helped us to remember them! We then practised the poem verses and actions together before performing it in groups to our class. We cant wait to hear What Cat thinks when she sees our performance!


We also went on a book hunt around the classrooms and outside! Before we started our hunt, we looked at covers of different books and talked about what we could see. We found out that the cover shows the title (name) of the book, some illustrations (pictures), the name of the author (the person who wrote the story) and the name of the illustrator (the person who drew the pictures). The children absolutely loved the book hunt and had a great time ticking off the matching book covers each time they spotted them!


Week beginning 26/2/2024 - During our recent literacy lessons, we have created our own story maps to show the events in the traditional tales we have learned. This week, we wrote sentences to describe the wolf character in Little Red Riding Hood. The wolf character is very mean and needs to be caught, so we learned about ‘Wanted Posters’ and decided to make one of our own to help find him! Mrs Styles and Mrs Perkins are very proud of the progress the children have made with their writing!

Week beginning 26/2/2024 - The children have been showing off their fantastic reading skills during busy learning time this week! They had to read the (four-letter) words on the bags carefully and find the matching picture to post inside. We were so impressed with how they blended the sounds to read each word!

Week beginning 19/2/2024 - During PE this week, we learned how to control different shaped balls, move them around our body and travel with them in different ways. This children were great at this and moved with the ball between their knees, along the floor, between their elbows and balancing on a ring! The children really look forward to their weekly PE lesson, which is great to see. 

Week beginning 19/2/2024 - During music this week, we learned a new nursery rhyme – 5 Little Monkeys. Some of the children had heard this nursery rhyme before, but this was a very different version – it was a rap! The children all felt super cool, rapping the lyrics and even added in their own rap style movements and actions! Mrs Styles and Miss James loved watching the children perform.

Week beginning 5/2/2024 - The children got creative as part of our Lunar New Year learning and made their own Chinese lanterns! They carefully cut out strips of paper and glued them together to make a lantern in the style that is used for decoration during Lunar New Year celebrations. We also learned that people clean their houses to get them ready for Chinese/Lunar New Year. It is seen as getting rid of the old things and getting ready for new things in the new year. It is called 'sweeping away the dust'. We showed this through dance during our PE lessons. The children created their own cleaning motion dance moves then put them together to Chinese style music. They were fantastic!

Week beginning 5/2/2024 - As part of our Lunar New Year learning, we talked about the country of China and looked at a map to see where it was in comparison to the United Kingdom. We learned that people who celebrate Lunar New Year often have a special meal as part of their celebration, a little bit like how we have a Christmas dinner as part of our Christmas celebration. We tasted some Chinese food including prawn crackers, spring rolls, noodles and fortune cookies. The children talked about which food was their favourite and why.

Week beginning 29/1/2024 - As part of our Three Little Pigs learning, the children acted out the traditional tale using the puppets and props, changing their voice depending on which character they were. They remembered the events in the story really well!

Week beginning 22.1.2024 - 

This week, the children in Reception took part in Balance Bike training! This was a 4 day course aimed at developing gross motor skills through riding a bike. The children made huge progress in just 4 days.

They listened fantastically to their instructor and discussed why it is important to wear a helmet when riding a bike. They learned how to sit on the balance bike and push themselves along before gaining speed and gliding across the hall, lifting up both legs! Their final day was learning how to avoid obstacles and use the brakes effectively. They loved the training and were very sensible!


Week beginning 22/1/2024 - 

As part of our learning about Goldilocks and the Three Bears, we looked at, touched and talked about some different teddy bears in the classroom—some of them were old and from the past and some were teddy bears that children play with now—the present. We took turns and held one bear at a time, before talking to our partner and deciding if the teddy bear should go in the ‘past’ hoop or the ‘present’ hoop. As we were exploring the teddy bears, we found out that the teddy bears from the past can be plain colours, usually brown, they sometimes had holes in them, they were quite hard and their fur was flat. We found out that teddy bears from the present can be colourful, soft and fluffy, sometimes have pictures or writing on them and sometimes make noise or have lights.


Week beginning 15/1/2024 - This week, the children noticed that a puddle in our outdoor area had turned into ice, so we decided to investigate how this happens! We came up with a plan to put some water in plates and bowls and leave them outside overnight (as part of our learning about winter, we found out that it gets very cold, especially at night time). In the morning, we went straight outside to see what had happened to our water—we were very excited! The water in the plates had turned to solid ice—we had so much fun touching the ice, using a magnifying glass to look closely at it, breaking it, throwing it and melting it in our hands! Some of the water in the bowls had remained as water and some of it was ice.


Week beginning 15.1.2024 - This week the children were asked to look at the words ‘Daddy Bear’, ‘Mummy Bear’ and ‘Baby Bear’ and spot the capital letters. We talked about how names need a capital letter at the start and linked this to the children’s own name writing. They were asked if they could match the names of the characters to the pictures. The children were then asked to write a name label in their books, either using the cards or independently.

Week beginning 8/1/2024 - This week we learned about capital letters! We played a game of matching lower-case letters to the capital letters! We used an alphabet poster as a guide and discussed the name of each letter and the sound it makes.

Week beginning 8/1/2024

This week we played a game of memory! There were a mixture of word/picture cards showing words containing either sh, ch or ll. With these cards facing down, we took turns to turn over two cards to see if they had the matching digraph (e.g ship and fish). The object of the game was to find and keep as many pairs of words as we could! We then wrote some of the words from the game into our books.

Week beginning 11/12/2023 - 

We are so proud of the children for trying their very best to remember the words and actions to our nativity songs as well as going onto the big stage and performing to the school and their grown-ups. They did absolutely brilliantly!


Week beginning 4/12/2023 - Today in our music lesson, we played glockenspiels! The children learned how to hold the beater correctly and where a 'C' is on the glockenspiel. They took turns to play the 'C' along to the I'm a Little Teapot backing track. 

Week beginning 4/12/2023 - This week we worked with our friends and talked about the different people who help us in our community. We talked about doctors, nurses, police officers, dentists, life guards, builders and firefighters and what they do as part of their job. In a small group, we took turns to match pictures of different equipment to the people that use it as part of their job.  

Week beginning 27/11/2023 - The children were given different CVC word pictures. They said the whole word (to match the picture) then Mrs Styles asked them if they could say the first sound in the word (e.g. b in bag). Mrs Styles repeated the word slowly and the children tried to hear say the middle and end sounds in the words. To make the words, the children were given a small selection of magnetic letters and they identified the sounds they needed with support.

Week beginning 27/11/2023 - 

This week we had a visit from our school nurses!

They came into school to talk about the job of a nurse. We learnt about how to keep our bodies healthy and why this is important. The nurses answered our questions and we talked about our own experiences with nurses when we have been poorly or needed help from the doctor’s surgery or hospital.

The nurses talked about why it is really important to wash our hands regularly throughout the day. We learned about germs and bacteria that are all around us and can make us poorly. We learned how to wash our hands properly and keep the germs away!

Week beginning 20/11/2023 - 

Today in music, we started by listening to a new piece of music – Boogie Wonderland by Earth, Wind and Fire. The children moved their bodies to the pulse in a way of their choosing.

We learned about a new musical term called ‘pitch’. We found out that the sounds in music can be low, high or anything in between. To demonstrate this, Mrs Styles played high and low notes on the glockenspiel and we had to guess which ones were high and which ones were low.

We then learned a new nursery rhyme – I’m a Little Teapot. We clapped the rhythm of some of the words and then learned all the words in sections. In small groups, we created actions to go with the nursery rhyme before performing it to the rest of the class.

Week beginning 20/11/2023 - We have loved playing outside with some of our new resources this week!

Week beginning 13/11/2023 - In this week’s continuous provision, the children have been enjoying using the medical roleplay equipment to make the patients feel better. They took turns being the doctor and the patient and used and shared the equipment beautifully!

Week beginning 13/11/2023 - 

This week during busy learning time in our outdoor area, Mrs Styles set up different activities to help us develop our gross motor skills, including:

  • Bowling – rolling different sized balls to knock down the pins
  • Throwing (under arm) bean bags into hoops from a short distance
  • Walking on stilts
  • Weaving in and out of cones and travelling in different ways, e.g. walking, running and skipping
  • Hop scotch

Week beginning 6/11/2023 - Today in music, we experimented with and learned the names of the different instruments including drums, maracas, triangles, jingle sticks (alternative to a tambourine), rhythm sticks and castanets. In small groups, the children were asked to listen out for the beat or pulse of a song and try to play their instrument along to it. The song was ‘Roll Alabama’ by Bellowhead.

Week beginning 6/11/2023 - 

This week we had a visit from our local police officer, PCSO Jo Jackson. She was invited into school to talk to us about the role of a police officer and how they keep us and the people in our community safe.

She taught us all about when and how to call 999 – we now know we need to learn our addresses just in case we ever need to call and say where we live. We also learned about how police dogs keep us safe and that sniffer dogs are used to track things down and some other dogs are used to catch people as they can run super fast!

PCSO Jo Jackson brought some police uniform for us to try on, which included their special vests, jackets, hats and equipment they wear/use to keep us and themselves safe. We learned about some of the equipment they were wearing including a camera, radio/walkie-talkie and special notepad.

Finally, we got to see the special police van! PCSO Jo Jackson turned on the flashing lights and siren and Mrs Styles got in the back of the van where the naughty people are put when they have been arrested!

Week beginning 23/10/2023 - This week, we looked at the seasons and in particular, the current season—autumn. We talked about the weather in autumn and the different things that we see. For example, leaves changing colour and falling from the trees, conkers, pinecones and acorns falling from the trees and animals collecting food for winter. We went on an autumn hunt around our outdoor area and found different autumn objects. We then investigated the objects using special equipment such as tweezers and magnifying glasses so we could see the different parts up close.


Week beginning 16/10/2023 - This week in maths, the children learned a new nursery rhyme, ‘Four Little Ducks’ and acted out the rhyme as a class, counting how many ducks were left after each verse. Using cards showing quantities of ducks up to four, the children counted out matching quantities of counters and matched them to the duck cards.

In small groups, the children were asked to match the duck cards to the corresponding numeral card. Some children drew their own pictorial representations to match the numeral cards.

Week beginning 16/10/2023 - The children have worked in small groups with an adult this week to identify the initial sounds in words. They listened to each word carefully and matched it to the sound it begins with. E.g. sun, snake and snail all matched to the initial sound ‘s’.

Week beginning 9/10/23 -  After practising counting one and two objects on the carpet and identifying one and two objects in our ‘big picture’ the children sang and did the actions to the nursery rhyme ‘Two Little Dicky Birds’.

We then played a game called ‘Taking down the wall’ in small groups. The children chose to take off one or two ‘bricks’ at time and the winner was the person who took off the last brick.

Week beginning 9/10/2023 - This week we talked about the different types of homes and where we live. We described how our homes are similar and different. We then used different construction materials to create a model of where we live and told our friends about the different parts of our model.

During outdoor play today, the children enjoyed climbing over and under the large tyres, carefully using their hands and feet on the ridges of the tyre as they climbed. Mrs Styles set up some small tyres and challenged the children to only step inside them. They had to step, hop and jump very carefully from tyre to tyre, ensuring they didn’t fall over! The children showed us how strong they were by carrying the tyres back at tidy-up time!

Week beginning 2/10/2023 - This week we practised writing the letters we have learned so far in our phonics lessons. We used the rhymes to help us remember how to form each letter. For example, a - ‘around the apple, down the leaf’ or d - ‘around the dinosaur’s bottom, up his tall neck and down to his toes’.

Week beginning 2/10/2023  - After reading and talking about the household objects from the Peepo book illustrations, the children explored some objects from the past including a telephone, an old mobile phone, a camera and a flat iron. We talked about how these objects are different to the ones we use in the present.

Week beginning 25/9/2023 - This week in Maths, we looked at sorting different objects by colour, shape, and type of object (e.g. leaves, cars, lego bricks, animal figures). With a sorting hoop and range of different coloured vehicles, the children were asked to sort the vehicles in one way and explain how they sorted them. Mrs Styles then gave them another vehicle to either add to the set inside the hoop, or place it outside, depending on the attribute.

Week beginning 25/9/2023 - We have been listening to and learning the story ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen. We started by listening to Mrs Styles reading the story, then we helped to create a story map to show the main events in order, we finally learned actions for different parts of the story and performed it in groups in front of our friends.

The children in Reception have had a brilliant start to the year and have all settled so well! They are having lots of fun exploring their new classrooms and outdoor area, making new friends along the way. We have been practising writing our names this week. The children started by tracing over the letters in their name then challenged themselves to copy the letters underneath (without tracing).

One of our favourite parts of the day is story time! The children also love to spend time sharing a story in our book corner.

The children used tyres and wooden blocks in the outdoor area to create an obstacle course. All the children were keen to show us their balancing skills and teamwork!

Dough Disco is proving to be a big hit with the children! Squeezing, rolling and pinching the playdough to the music really helps to strengthen the children's fine motor muscles to enable them to develop their pencil grip and writing skills. But most of all.. it’s fun!

World Book Day 2023

Spring Term

This term we are learning all about Traditional Tales. We are following 6 stories over the whole term and learning about them in depth for 2 weeks each. The stories are as follows;

  • Goldilocks and the 3 Bears
  • The 3 Little Pigs
  • The Magic Porridge Pot
  • The 3 Billy Goats Gruff
  • Little Red Riding Hood 
  • Jack and the Beanstalk


These stories really excite the children and also foster their love of reading. Look out for some amazing pictures of their work over the next few weeks!


Educational Programme

9th November 2022


This week we had a visit from our local Police Officers! They were invited into school to talk to us about the role of a Police Officer and how they can keep people in our community safe.

They brought their uniform for us to try on which included their special vests and equipment they use to keep us and themselves safe! We could label some of the things they were wearing like a walkie-talkie, cameras and the reflective markings on their jackets.

They explained to us that they keep us safe and that their job is to stop people making the wring choices.

They brought their van onto the playground and we watched the lights flash and heard the sirens! We were so excited!

Welcome to Year R Class Blog!

We have had a fantastic start to Autumn Term, take a look at some of our pictures to see how busy we have been!

W/C 9th May 2022
For the next two weeks, Year R are learning all about Space!

Take a look at some of our work so far!

W/C 25th April 2022

Year R have had a great start back to school after Easter! We have been learning all about the book 'Handa's Surprise'. We did some fruit tasting in class and tried some of the fruit Handa found on her walks in Africa. We tried mango, pineapple, avocado and passion fruit! We decided if we liked it or not first, and then we described what they looked and tasted like.

Take a look at our work!

Tuesday 15th March 2022

These are a few examples of the sentences we wrote in Reception about our Gingerbread Man making! We have been working really hard on our letter formation, finger spaces, capital letters and full stops. Can you spot them in our work?

Monday 14th March 2022

This week, we have made our very own gingerbread men! Mrs Whiteside bought the ingredients and in small groups we measured them out, added them together and made the dough to make our gingerbread. We decorated them with tasty treats and then wrote a sentence about what we did! This helps us to use the phonics we know to give our writing a real purpose.

World Book Week W/C 28.02.22

Today, we had a World Book Day treasure hunt! Mrs Whiteside hid some of our favourite book covers around our classrooms and in the corridors and we had to match them to the book! We worked in pairs and we found all of the book covers! We even got a prize!


World Book Week W/C 28.02.22

Today, we dressed up as our favourite book characters! Can you guess who we are?
We brought in books to share with our teachers and friends and we absolutely loved reading them!

World Book Week W/C 28.02.22

As part of World Book Week at Northlands, Reception class watched a clip of Tom Fletcher which described how he wrote one of his books ‘ There’s a Wolf in your Book!’.

We have read many of his books before and really enjoy them!

We discussed as a class why we like them so much, and which parts of his stories are our favourite. We read the story as a class during one of our carpet sessions and also talked about the other stories we know that have a wolf in them. We recognised that Little Red Riding Hood and The 3 Little Pigs both have a wolf in the story as the villain!

We recreated one of the stories using the props in our role play area. We had so much fun!

Art Week - W/C 14th February 2022

During Art Week, Year R have been getting creative by making some beautiful Valentine's cards for the people that we love. We used glue, scissors and coloured card for the stems of our flowers and then we used transparent coloured sheets for our love hearts!

We spoke about who we love and why we love them during our carpet sessions and we also discussed how sharing love and being kind makes us feel when we receive it back. We have really enjoyed making our cards to spread a little happiness today!