WORLD BOOK DAY
We ended last week by celebrating World Book Day and the importance of reading. Well done to the children and staff for taking part in Book Swap and for all the wonderful World Book Day costumes! There were some amazingly creative costumes on show!
It is 150 years since the birth of Beatrix Potter, one of the world’s best-loved children’s authors, who has captured our imagination for over 100 years with her beautifully illustrated Tales.
Our theme this year was ‘The World of Beatrix Potter’
With our exciting new building project underway we are all waiting with anticipation to see what the finished building is going to look like. Mrs Dhorajiwala said she wanted our building to ‘stand out, be colourful and match our vibrant school’ and set us a challenge.
We have, as a whole school, been looking at and studying the artist Piet Mondrian and have been discovering different ways to emulate his work. In Reception we have been experimenting with Mondrians artwork. We have been making Mondrian pictures in our Child initiated playtime using lego bricks to recreate the style. We have also made beautiful stained glass style windows using tissue paper . When we hang them up they create lots of different colours on our windows and floors!
Looking through a Viewfinder
We began by looking at the picture of the Beach Scene by Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas. At first we found it difficult to notice all of the details that he painted. To help us focus on the different parts of the picture, we looked through a viewfinder.
First we looked at the nurse and the girl in the foreground. We noticed that the girl looked like she was asleep and was having her hair brushed.
Next we looked at the things lying next to the girl. Her swimming costume looked funny and she had a basket.
Then we looked at the family in the background. They looked cold as they are wrapped up. This helped us to notice that the sky was grey.
Next we looked at the lady and man with the dog in the background. They look like they are talking. We noticed the clothes that they were wearing and thought that they are different to the clothes people normally wear to the beach. They are old-fashioned.
Finally we looked at the people and boats in the sea. They are under the grey sky. There are lots of sailing boats and the people are paddling their feet.
Sounds that you can hear at the beach
We listened to different sounds from a beach. The children closed their eyes as they tuned into the different sounds. The children could hear birds flying in the sky. They thought these birds would be seagulls as we are at the beach. They could hear the sea crashing against the shore. The children recognised the sound of the wind as it whirled around the beach whipping up the sand. The children also could hear laughing. It was suggested that this came from the children who paddled in the sea. They said the crunching sound came from children walking on the pebbles.
The children then looked at different instruments. They learnt the different names such as Tulipblock, Claves and Maracas. They then experimented with the different instruments to hear the different sounds that they make. As a group we decided which instruments represented the sounds at The Beach.
We wanted to encourage the children to think about the characters in the painting. To do this we carried out a hot seating exercise. We asked the children to look at the painting and chose one character. Then we asked them to think about what the character was doing and why. The children then took on the same stance as the character. Whilst the children stayed in their poses, we asked them to think about how their stance made them feel. For example, are you relaxed? Excited?
Different characters were then invited to the front of the class to answer questions. The class wanted to know what they were doing at the beach, who they were with and how they felt. We then encouraged the children to use their imaginations further by thinking about possible things that their character did before or after. We had some wonderful responses as you can see below.
As part of our visit to The National Gallery, we were taught a method to encourage children to do sketches. She discussed how many children are already reluctant drawers as they feel they are no good at this skill. However, our guide suggested that we teach children to sketch through focusing on one element from the painting. Once this has been decided, children should attempt to draw without taking their eyes from the object.
We taught our children this technique for drawing. Many found it quite difficult; however, some children really grasped this activity and produced some pleasing sketches as you can see below.
Backdrop to Painting
As part of our project, we wanted to take inspiration from the Van Go Yourself project. Van Go Yourself is all about recreating a piece of artwork. We wanted to put a more modern flare on our artwork The Beach and use the children’s understanding and experiences of the beach to recreate our painting.
We initially focused on the backdrop of our painting. We wanted to keep this as closely linked to our painting The Beach as possible. The children looked at the different colours and shades which had been used to create the sand, sea and sky. They then chose different colours to paint these three aspects of our backdrop. We mixed different colours together to get lighter and deeper tones. The children then worked hard on making our backdrop more textured, they chose different materials which complimented the colours in the painting. Once these had been stuck on, the children painted over the top of them.
Reception Storytelling Blog
In class the children read different versions of Rapunzel. After this the children began to create a story rainbow in their books which highlighted the main points of the story.
Expanding our knowledge
Jane Glynn our Forest Schools practitioner came in to do a session with both Reception classes. The children listened to Jane tell them the story of Rapunzel. Jane then encouraged the children to create their own Rapunzel character using natural resources found in the Reception Garden.
The children and Jane then went on a hunt around the garden to see which resources they could use. After they had collected enough the children set to work constructing their very own Rapunzel.
Back in the classroom, the children then drew their creations on paper.
Demonstrating our skills
Jane then returned for another session where she retold the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Jane questioned the children about how they though each character felt after the story. The children decided that Goldilocks needed to make Baby Bear a present to apologise for eating his porridge, breaking his chair and sleeping in his bed.
Jane demonstrated how to make a crown for Baby Bear using double sided tape and natural resources. The children then set off collecting natural materials from the garden and began to attach these to their crowns.
Showcasing our Storytelling
Back inside the classroom the children were put into pairs and asked to talk about how Goldilocks and Baby Bear felt. After this the children then began to act out different conversations between Goldilocks and Baby.
Celebrating our Skills
Jane returned to reception alongside Danyah Miller and together they worked with both classes to retell the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Danyah retold the story using props and then Jane explained that the children were going to be constructing their own bridge using the natural resources found in the garden.
Reception’s Trip to Tesco
As part of our topic on Past, Present and Future we wanted to learn about jobs that we might like to do when we are older. We wanted to find out about what it would be like to work in a shop, so went to Tesco. We met Michelle who works at the store and she showed us around. Michelle was very helpful and we enjoyed finding out about her job. She also showed us around the shop and we did lots of activities. Have a look at some of our favourites.
We looked around the store to find different coloured fruit and vegetables.
We learnt about where the fruit and vegetables grow.
We then enjoyed eating different fruit from around the world.
We then went into the freezer. It was really cold!
We each had a shopping list. We went around the store and collected the different items we needed. We then paid for the items at the till.
Jack enjoyed weighing the apples before paying for them
We went to the cheese counter and tasted different cheeses. Chocolate orange cheddar was a particular favourite.
We went to the fish counter and saw lots of different varieties.
Our favourite was the crab!