We have had a busy start to the term in P4S. In Maths, we have been honing our skills in estimation, rounding, multiplication and exploring the delights of function machines. After a “playtastic” block of learning about the features of playscript, we are reading a number of short stories and focusing on characterisation, setting and plot devices. Skills applied in our own amazing Hallowe’en writing.
We have evaluated the skills developed in our amazing Isle of Izcalm context, which focused on citizenship, what makes a good citizen, and the skills required to make decisions fairly in a community. We achieved this through drama, becoming a very special community on the imaginary Isle of Izcalm. Our evaluations highlighted improvements in our abilities to communicate with others, to discuss and to debate issues respectfully and in teamwork, problem solving and , of course, in dramatic characterisation!
We have launched our new context which, through a piece of imaginative extended writing on giving to others and our role in running this year’s Christmas post, will also support our understanding of those values we identified as being so important to us as developing global citizens!
Throughout our busy routines, we also find time to enjoy our shared love of reading and to share our “top tips” for a “good read”.
Over the last fortnight, members of P4S have harvested our crop of apples from the eco garden and made them in to apple crumble to share with very special visitors from the Memory Cafe. Our visitors were most complimentary!
It was very satisfying to feel that we could grow, cook and offer our produce to eat, in our school. The cycle begins again as we prepare the eco garden for the coming winter and spring planting.
As part of our focus on good citizenship, P4S has been exploring decisionmaking and the skills of good communication, and creative thinking so important if we are to contribute positively in our communities. We also agreed that good citizens persevered and supported each other when faced with difficult tasks. We have been practising these skills in a series of challenges , but without doubt, our favourite was the tower marshmallow and spaghetti challenge.
Working in groups of three and then six, we had to build a two tier tower, using only spaghetti and marshmallows.Groups tried lots of different shapes and structures.
“We had to make the tower stable” – Finlay
Finally, to ensure and adequate supply of marshmallows, the groups merged in to two and created two super structures using very different techniques.
In discussion, talking lots, teamwork and just ” keeping trying” were identified as key.
Lots of learning! Lots of fun!
P1B and P1S were lucky enough to have the opportunity to meet Morag Hood, author of “I Am Bat”, one of the Scottish Book Trust’s Book Bag books.
Morag has written several other super picture books and shared a number of them with us.
We loved them all but the excitement in the room rose when she read “I Am Bat” to us all.
Morag showed us how she set about drawing bats, and we helped by making sad/happy/angry bat faces!
We then decorated paper bats.
These were just some of our responses.
We had a wonderful return visit from Katie the farmer, with another fantastic RHET representative in Marion Sutherland. We learned the processes by which milk was produced and oats grown on our farms become oatcakes. Most excitingly, we got to examine oats and grind them in to flour. The flour was mixed with other ingredients to make oatcakes. We also had the opportunity to churn butter from cream with a lot of enthusiastic shaking!
“I liked learning about the oats.” said Orla
“Yes, I liked taking the husk off the seed and looking at the seed.” agreed Josh.
I liked shaking the cream to make butter” added Emilie.
As part of our ongoing exploration in to Scottish foods, Orla’s grandparents, Kate and Rod , came to class to explain how to make a clootie dumpling. Rod told us all about his family recipe for this delicious Scottish food. We saw all the ingredients, his recipe and got to taste a dumpling. Kate taught us a song about dumplings.
We loved smelling and discussing the different ingredients and learning all the steps in making a dumpling in a “cloot”. Most of us tried a piece of Rod’s wonderful pudding.
Emilie spoke for many when she said “I think your dumpling tastes fantastic!”.
Our thanks to our wonderful visitors!
Both Primary One classes had exciting visits from the Katie the farmer on Thursday. Katie Brisbane from the Royal Highland Educational Trust came by to drop in an exciting learning box and to talk to us about Scottish farms, the animals raised and the crops grown. Katie brought props!
“I loved smelling the hay” said Annie . However, we all agreed silage wasn’t so pleasant!
We learned lots and we are looking forward to a return visit later in the month when we will be making oatcakes and butter.
Watch this space!
We have continued to explore the forces which make toys move.
On Friday, we experimented with toy cars. We tried blowing, pushing our car with one finger or with one hand across a table. We found out that:
“The harder the push the further the car moved.” – Anna
We made a car with a partner and tried using a ramp. The ramp made the cars go further and faster and the heavier the car the further it travelled. Some of our car designs worked well but some crashed. We talked lots about what made one design work well whilst others were trickier.
Did we enjoy being investigators?
“I loved it! – Annie
A thumbs up from all!
P1B and P1S have been working hard, learning lots and having fun in our first few weeks as learners in school. The children have been exploring the values, skills and attitudes we need to take our learning forward as we progress through school. We have done so through lots of games, stories, discussion, craft and play. We have already had visitors in class, Mr Thomson, our janitor, and Mrs Rayner, our head cook, explained their respective roles in school. We loved hearing about the things they do to help us stay safe, healthy and happy in school.
Both classes have enjoyed learning our first sounds and encountering some rather wonderful number animals. Ava said, ‘I am proud of how I can write my numbers.’ There has also been
a focus on pattern in the world around us and in number. The children have demonstrated excellent understanding of repeating pattern. As Orla says, ‘a pattern has to be ordered using the same things again and again.’
On Thursday the 17th of May, both P1 classes became teachers for the afternoon. Our parents visited our classes and had a look at the work we had undertaken in our learning about woodlands and the Enchanted Forest. Our parents then walked with us up to Dykedale woods and the children explained about the art of Andy Goldsworthy and his use of nature in “transient art”. In creative partnerships with fellow pupils, and demonstrating to admiring parents, we made pieces of art from found materials in the woods.
Hannah M said ” We made things from wood, sticks, moss, acorns and stones. ”
George added ” I felt excited about making something with my mum. We used sticks, beech nuts and leaves to make a pattern. ”
Grace M commented ” We made lots of pieces of artwork, including shelters, sculptures, dens, love hearts, fairy house and bug houses. ”
It was a very special afternoon for everyone involved.