We now have a date for beginning work on our new school website. I will be busy working on that over the next month or so, so will not be updating the wiki. Looking forward to sharing news and pictures on our website soon.
Blein Vie Noa!
This term we are learning about characters from Manx myths and legends. The children have been very excited by Juan Moore's illustrations of different characters, and are very enthusiastic to share stories, poems and songs. We have been learning about Finn MacCooill and the Phynoderee so far.
Last week Brastyl 2 caught the bus and walked down to the House of Manannan to find out about toys and games in the past. The children were very well behaved and enjoyed listening to Bnr Callister's presentation about how toys have changed, before getting their hands on a selection of reproduction toys to try them out for themselves.
You may have heard strange stories about Christmas elves this week...this is because we are working in a special way to explore our toys topic. It comes from a drama discipline called 'mantle of the expert' where classes explore a topic through role play. It 's a method I've used successfully for several years now and find that the sense of teamwork and a shared goal really engages the children. This half term we have started working as the company 'Gaihaghyn yn Ard Twoaie' and we are role-playing that we are Jishag y Nollick and the Christmas Elves making preparations for Christmas. This is going to involve doing surveys of popular toys, finding our about materials needed, thinking about ecological issues, and preparing training materials and interview questions for a new member of staff.
We are working hard on our quick recall of maths facts at the moment. We will be keeping a record of facts learned, and when one card has been ticked off, children will bring home the next level to work on.
Practical maths this week involved different ways of sharing.
We have also been taking beautiful photographs
And exploring the work of Matisse
This week we have been learning about odd (cor) and even (corrym) numbers. This is a really good one to support at home as you can look out for the odd and even rows of house numbers when out and about, counting in twos as you walk up/down a street. We've also been learning about symmetry (shimmeidrys), making symmetrical mini-beasts with different materials.
This week in maths we have been thinking about shapes. Is every shape with 3 sides a triangle? How many triangles can you make with 6 sticks? Is every shape with 4 sides a square? Do 2 squares always make a rectangle when you put them together? We've also had some fun making art with sticks.
We all enjoyed watching WALL-E and lots of discussion points came up. Can your child summarise the plot for you? We tried a sequencing activity where we had to put 5 big ideas from the story in order and some children found this very challenging! The film led in well to our first 'Philosophy for Children' session which we had this week. We started off with a picture of an animal that had become trapped in some rubbish and ended up talking about was it ever right to trap animals. Lots of great listening, thinking, enquiring and building on other people's ideas, well done Brastyl 2! Next half term we will be developing our rubbish topic in a seasonal direction, there's still lots of science and technology based around 'materials' for us to investigate.
We've had a very healthy Shapp Scobbey week, with donations of oranges one day and vegetables on another.
This week, for our story focus we began watching the film WALL-E. The children were all very taken with WALL-E's hoarding of precious objects from the rubbish. The film has a strong environmental theme which should give us lots of stimulation for discussion of our topic. It's also a useful stimulus for storytelling development as the children attempt to retell the story so far, choosing important points and deciding which order to put them in.
In maths we have been handling the tricky concept of 'the difference between'. This can be very confusing to children, who may be able to write and complete a plus or minus sum using a practised method but may not thoroughly understand what they are doing. We began with the idea of children's ages, thinking about who was the oldest and how much older they were. Some children used multi-link bricks to represent years, comparing the size of the towers, while others developed their number line work, counting from the smaller to the larger number. If you have the opportunity to ask any comparison questions at home this would really support our work. (Who has got the most sweets? How many more has that person got? Which chocolate bar is more expensive? How much more expensive? etc)
In science and technology we have been investigating where paper comes from, and how to recycle our own paper!
We had an interesting trip to the Western Civic Amenity Site yesterday. After a pleasant walk along the old railway line we arrived for our tour, learning about how all the waste is sorted and where it goes afterwards for a second life. We brought some waste with us to recycle that we had collected from our lunch boxes and we are going to be making plans for how to increase the amount of recycling done by the school.
This week in maths we have been working on our knowledge of numbers and the number system, using number lines and number grids. We have been thinking about 1 more or less than a number and ten more or less than a number, and trying to navigate our way round the system mentally or with number aids.
We've been out and about in the village again. First we practised our map making, then used our maps of the village to mark on the village litter bins. We are going to be thinking about design, siting, how often they're emptied and how effectively they are being used.
We all made books this week with class version of a 'This is the bear' (Shoh yn mucawin) story, telling the tale of the lost bear we discovered in our school garden during a litter pick. We worked on the text together and the children have all illustrated their own copy of the book.
On Thursday we did some work in the garden, tidying up for the winter. We had the challenge of moving a very heavy planter, and employed some simple technology to help us.
Jeant dy mie to our six brave election candidates. They prepared a short speech and presented it to the school yesterday, before the children cast their votes for our new Coonseil ny Cleinney-see 'Skeet' for details.
This week we have been out and about assessing the rubbish situation in St Johns. This activity has elicited some excellent geography work from the children as they describe and draw plans of different areas around the school grounds and village.
This week the children have all taken home their first class library book, as well as some guidance for reading at home and a home school record book with details of some of the learning targets they will be working on this term.
Failt erriu gys Brastyl 2!
Last week our new class got to know each other, made groups and learned about classroom routines. We
fitted in a trip to the arboretum to collect interesting things for our interesting things table (do feel free to send in items for home eg conkers/special leaves/shells/dead beetles etc). We also did a spot of gardening and harvested the vegetables to make soup. Many thanks to the lady from the visiting coach party who saw us working hard and donated £10 for our school garden!