Some of our chrysalises are now ready to be transferred into their new habitat. We carefully stuck the top of the caterpillar pots onto the side of the pavilion. We will now watch metamorphosis occur over the next couple of weeks...
Look at how much Year 2's sunflowers have grown! Thank you to all parents who emailed photos in for us to see.
Make sure you keep checking the school's twitter page for sunflower updates - #watchthemgrow
"This has been an inspirational task for Theo, who requested we went to the garden centre to buy more seeds to plant. He now has an array of things growing on the windowsill and outside including cucumbers, carrots and an assortment of flowers. They are planted in lego style planters which will be connected together outside when the weather picks up."
"Hazel’s Sunflower is doing very well! It’s growing up to 20 inches :)"
"I planted my sunflower at school. It is now 25cm tall. On the way home it got damaged but I am looking after it."
"Emilie's sunflower is growing well. We originally had 3 growing but one got decapitated early on. Currently they have been repotted once and still love on the kitchen windowsill as its safe from toddler and cats there."
"Adam's sunflowers are growing outside. They are 36 cm tall. Adam looks after them very well at home."
Mrs Staples is very pleased to say that the moth that was rescued and brought in by a child has been safely released into Forest School.
The children enjoyed caring for the moth and watching in anticipation for the hatching to happen.
Arrival of Caterpillars
Since he has been released, we have had a delivery of caterpillars... they are growing each day and are starting to go through the process of metamorphosis - here are some photos!
Year 2 are coming to the end of their fractions unit and have shown off their understanding of finding fractions of quantities. They are now able to find both unit and non-unit fractions of shapes and amounts. Here are some examples of how the children used counters to represent finding three quarters:
Bear Trail Trip
Year 1 and 2 have had a fantastic, muddy day at the Bear Trail! The children were put to the test as they tackled a range of activities. They had to scramble over the bear nets, zip down the zip wire and tumble through the tunnels, all while getting soaking wet and covered in mud! We would also like to thank all of the parents who volunteered today.
As you can see from the pictures, you can see what an exciting and enjoyable time the children had...
"My favourite part was the mud slide because it leads into mud. I liked it when the mud got into my shoes because it squelched." - Noah
"I was determined to go up the big climbing frame." - Harry
"I enjoyed all of it because I liked having fun with my friends." - Carys
The Year 2 sunflower growing competition has begun! Children planted their own sunflowers this week and are monitoring their progress weekly, recording this in their sunflower diary.
Make sure you follow the progress on our new Twitter page - #watchthemgrow
Look at our fantastic creations! Unit 1 have been exploring different textures and patterns within nature to create woven dream catchers, finger knitting and Andy Goldsworthy style pieces - all using natural resources.
"This stick is fuzzy" - Miley
"My wool is soft and fluffy." - Heidi
"I have created a pattern starting from the middle and going outwards." - Sebastian
"The wood is rough but the leaves are smooth." - Bobby
What a brilliant way to make use of the sunny weather this week!
Summer Term 1 - Let's Explore
This term has kick started with a day of exploring. The children took part in a treasure hunt around the school where they found envelopes containing information about famous explorers such as Sir David Attenborough, Neil Armstrong and Ann Bancroft. The children learnt about each explorer and what or where it was in the world they explored. After this, the children were lead to hall where they watched the film 'Up' and got to experience what it was like to be a wilderness explorer!
This half term, we will be exploring art, music and geography, completing a variety of different activities linking to this theme.
Self Portrait Gallery
We have been learning about significant artists throughout time and how they presented their work. We begun our learning by exploring how portraits have evolved into photographs following the invention of the camera and now, selfies!
The children have explored the works of William Morris, an 18th century artist who made stained glass windows, wallpaper and tapestry. William Morris' designs were often patterns and included designs inspired by nature and were repeated in block patterns.
The children also learned about Banksy, an anonymous graffiti artist who uses stencils to create his pieces. His work is sprayed onto walls and buildings around the country and usually contain a hidden message or meaning.
Unit 1 have used their printing skills to create a pattern in the style of William Morris' wallpaper. Following this, they cut out a silhouette stencil portrait in the style of Banksy. The children wrote a description of themselves using interesting adjectives. We invited parents in to come and take part in our Guess Who Gallery where they had to use the clues given in the children's descriptions to try to identify different children.
Thank you so much to all parents who came in to school to see their children's work, we feel it is a valuable experience for the children and a chance for them to share their learning with you. To see them feeling so proud of what they have created was wonderful!
Learning with Parents - Bridge Building
Unit 1 have been learning all about transport through time as part of their Time Travellers topic. After looking at how transport has changed over time, the children learnt how bridges were designed and built many years ago and how many are still standing today as a result of their sturdy structures and careful designs.
We invited parents in and set the children a challenge to design and build a sturdy bridge which could withstand the weight of a paper car. The children and parents were allowed to select just two materials to build their bridge from. Each bridge had to be at least the length of a ruler and wide enough for their paper car to sit on.
Children and parents showed fantastic determination in this challenging task and worked well together in teams.
A huge thank you to all parents and grandparents who supported the children with this activity, they thoroughly enjoyed completing their learning with you and welcoming you into their classroom to share this experience with them.
Unit 1 Planetarium Visit
On Wednesday, the children in Years 1 and 2 had a special visitor. Mr Barber from the Spacelab Planetarium brought in an inflatable planetarium in to school for the children to see and experience!
We had to crawl through a long tunnel into a giant dome and inside, all the lights were dimmed and the planetarium was left in complete darkness.
"I’m sure many parents would be surprised to know that it is so dark in the planetarium that it is impossible to see your hand in front of your face and yet Willowbank children today showed not a trace of anxiety but simply delight and excitement." - Mr Barber
The children learnt all about the solar system; different planets were shown on the sides of the dome and children were able to watch how the Earth moves and experiences day and night.
We also learnt all about the stars which were projected onto the roof of the planetarium. The children looked at the different star constellations and how far away they are from us on Earth. They learnt how to identify different constellations and look for the North Star at night.
"What I enjoy so much talking to young children is they have a sense of ‘awe and wonderment’ which is always apparent when the first see the stars." - Mr Barber
The children had a fantastic day and really showcased their excellent understanding of the Earth and space. Thank you so much to Mr Barber for coming in to school to provide the children with such a fantastic opportunity!
Lego Moon Rovers
Unit 1 have were very fortunate to have been visited by Julian Surtees - an expert in everything Lego! The children followed step-by-step instructions to help them to build their own Lego Moon Rover. Each vehicle had cogs and a motor which the children had to fit independently. Their designs could be modified and adapted but had to withstand a driving test on the 'Moon'.
Throughout the sessions, the children showed fantastic teamwork, perseverance and determination, creating some excellent models.
If you would like to take a look at some of the Moon Rovers in action, please visit Julian's website: http://www.juliansurtees.com/school-workshops/willow-bank-primary-school/
Spring Term - Time Travellers
Our topic this term is Time Travellers and a lot of our learning will be linked to this theme. At the start of term, the children had to use their problem solving skills to crack codes, leading to a mystery item buried somewhere in the school. They had to use their addition knowledge to find the first clue, then direct their partner using positional language to find the next. The children found lots of letters hidden in different places around school which they unscrambled to reveal the location of the mystery item - a time capsule buried in Forest School!