Checkendon CE (A) Primary School

Checkendon CE (A) Primary School

Respect, integrity, courage, compassion and hope

Oak Class Blog 2023/2024


Term 5 Week 5 

This week has been another busy one, full of activity.  we have written acrostics which have now been made into a class book so all the children can enjoy each other's writing.  We have been inspired by the artist Rosalind Monks to create some detailed minibeasts and flowers and also used pastel to sketch and colour wild flowers. 

In maths we learnt about positional and directional language, using Beebot and 2go on Purple Mash to support our learning.  Year 1 and challenged themselves to write code to successfully navigate mazes.   

Acorns have also created some wonderful bees after reading about them this week. 

Next week we look forward to our May day celebrations on Wednesday and the poetry competition on Friday.  

Term 5 Week 4 

This week we have been busy exploring our local area on our visit to Blue Tin, writing acrostic poems inspired by The Lost Words which we have displayed on our Oak Class Poetree, begun pressing flowers for our Art project and enjoyed sharing books with our reading partners.  Acorns have learnt about the lifecycle of Spiders and practiced using money.  We have also been practicing our Country Dancing ready for our May Day celebrations at the end of the month.  

Next week we will be continuing to explore The Lost Words and beginning our Art Learning Project. 

Visit to Blue Tin

On Wednesday we enjoyed  a wonderful visit to Blue Tin Farm shop!   We put on our wellies and walked through the Bluebell Woods, enjoying squishing and squelching through the mud.  When we arrived we met Emma who led us into the vegetable garden for a drink and biscuit (thank you Mrs Chapman they were yummy) whilst she told us about the animals and the farm.  We explored the vegetable garden, trying beetroot leaves and then went on a tour to meet the Dexter cattle and their calves and the Gloucester Old Spot pigs and their piglets.  We had a brilliant time! 

Term 5 Week 3

This week we have been coders! Using Purple Mash the KS1 children have been learning the importance of clear and simple instructions,  creating their own sequences of code and debugging code.  Meanwhile Acorns have been studying ladybirds, finding out about their lifecycle and describing them.  They also created their own ladybirds. 

On Wednesday we had a visit from Amy as part of our PSHE work on being healthy.  Amy spoke to us about the importance of dental health, why we need to eat and drink the right things to help our teeth keep healthy and of course the importance of cleaning our teeth. 

Next week we look forward to visiting Blue Tin Farm Shop. 

Term 5 Week 2

This week we have been enjoying reading Where My Wellies Take Me and using it as our inspiration to explore our own local area.  Year 1 and 2 have been studying local maps, learning the different symbols used to represent landmarks.  They have also created some wonderful information leaflets about Checkendon.  Acorns have been reading the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar learning about the days of the week and the order of events in the day. They have also created some beautiful symmetrical butterfly art work.  

On Friday morning we had an unexpected visitor to our room, a mouse had come to visit us!  The children were fascinated to see the mouse and she has now been relocated to the hedgerow with the help of some of our nature smart pupils. 

Next week we will be learning about the traditions of celebrating May Day and beginning our computing unit on coding. 

Term 5 Week 1

It has been lovely to welcome the children back to school this week and they have been full of enthusiasm for our new learning projects Where My Wellies Take Me (KS1) and Magnificent Minibeasts (Acorns).  

This week we have been thinking about our journeys to school, we used our senses on a walk around the school field which lead to some wonderful writing, visited the oldest building in Checkendon and searched for minibeasts.  

Next week we will be thinking about all the amenities Checkendon has and creating maps of the village, going on our whole school Bluebell Walk and learning more about the life cycles of different minibeasts. 


Term 4 Week 6 

This week we have been reading dreamtime stories and learning about the indigenous Australian culture.  The children also finished their maps of Australia.  We created a whole class collaborative art work of the The Rainbow Serpent, looked at the symbols used to tell dreamtime stories in art work and made Easter cards by dot painting using the colours found in Aboriginal art.  

On Wednesday we went to church to celebrate Easter with a Holy Communion service.  

Have a wonderful Easter break. 

Term 4 Week 5

This week we have been learning about the unique animals, geography and history of Australia.  The children have learnt about James Cook's secret mission to find the land 'down under' sailing on HMS Endeavour around the world.  They were very interested to learn about the hard life of sailors on board and their interesting approach to hygiene!  Year 1 and 2 then drew freehand maps of Australia and used map symbols to identify different features.  We then stained them in cold coffee to age them.  Acorns have really enjoyed learning outside in the warmer temperatures using the sand pit to learn about capacity in their maths lessons.  

Next week we will be learning about Aboriginal dreamtime stories and celebrating Easter. 

Term 4 Week 4 

This week there has been lots of hard work from all the children.  In maths KS1 have been looking at fractions and volume whilst Acorns have been ordering numbers, adding and subtracting.  In English we have started reading the story of There's an Ouch in my Pouch  by Jeanne Willis identifying the rich describing language and all of the different punctuation types.  

In Geography we have been learning about the island of Australia with it's unique wildlife and different climate zones.  

On Wednesday we were lucky enough to have a live lesson from Farmer Fi who told us about her day as a farmer and what she is doing now it is spring.  We learnt that there are lots of different jobs to be done all year round on the farm!

Next week we will learn about the history of Australia and write our own Australian animal 'walkabout' stories.  

Term 4 Week 3 - Writing Week!

It has been a wonderful writing week, full of learning, fun and lots of rockets! 

We enjoyed learning about the inspirational figure of Mae Jemison, doctor, engineer and astronaut.  

On Wednesday morning we were treated to a science workshop where we learnt about sound vibrations, chemical reactions and thought about the effects of gravity.  In the afternoon we carried out our science investigation to see how far our rockets would travel, launching them with the power of air.  We thought about how to make our test fair and carefully measured our results.  

On Thursday we celebrated our love of reading on World Book Day.

It has been a jam packed week! Next week we look forward to starting our new learning project, learning all about Australia.  

Term 4 Week 2

This week has been full of rocket building! We have made two different types of rocket, the first using straws which were great fun to launch and the second using plastic bottles.  There was great partner work! Year 1 and 2 then wrote instructions to explain how to make them.  

Unfortunately the rainy weather meant that we have had to postpone our bottle rocket launch until next week.  Next week is whole school writing week and we are looking forward to sharing our work with you on Friday afternoon. 

Term 4 Week 1

It has been a brilliantly busy first week back!  In English KS1 have been exploring space themed poetry, writing acrostics, Cinquains, using similes and lots of adjectives!  Their work will from part of our writers week display in March. 

In Maths Year 2 have been working on their 2, 5 and 10 times tables, Year 1 have been working on place value and Acorns have been ordering numbers within 20.  

Our Art Learning project this week has been studying the work of Alma Thomas, an American abstract artist who was inspired by the Space Race of the 1960s. 

Next week we will be making and launching rockets. 


Term 3 Week 5

This week we have had a wonderful time finding about the Lunar New Year celebrations and learning about the year of the dragon.  Each day we have wished each other 'Happy New Year' in Mandarin when we take the register.  In our English lessons we have heard the story of the Great Race which the Jade Emperor organised to decide the names of the years in the zodiac calendar.  The children did a brilliant job retelling the story and ordering the events.  On Wednesday Corinne joined us to share her knowledge of different traditions and the children enjoyed having a go at writing messages using characters on red paper. In PE we performed dragon dances and as part of our topic we created dragon masks and dragon puppets. 

Next week we are looking forward to our half term break, in Term 4 we will be learning about Explorers and Australia. 

Term 3 Week 4 

This week we have been learning about space explorers! In English we have been learning about Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon.  We have looked at biographies of lots of famous astronauts including Helen Sharman, Yuri Gargarin and Buzz Aldrin to learn about the features of that style of writing.  

In science we have been learning about what humans need to survive and how astronauts can survive in space.  We even learnt how astronauts go to the toilet! We enjoyed stories being read to us by the astronauts aboard the ISS. 

Our sock puppets have been completed too. 

Next week we will be learning about the Lunar New Year celebrations, learning some greetings in Mandarin and finding out about The Great Race. 


Term 3 Week 3

This week we have been making hand puppets! We made simple paper puppets and then added detail to create animals and fantasy creatures.  the children then designed and made sock puppets, deciding how to join their materials together. 

Year 1 and 2 have been working hard on their information book about the Moon, writing factual sentences and creating a glossary. 

Acorns have been busy being brilliant writers and mathematicians too. 

Next week we will begin learning about individual space explorers.  

Term 3 Week 2 

This week we have been learning about the moon, Year 1 and 2 used information books and the internet to research facts about the moon, whilst Acorns explored how the craters on the surface are made, painted their own moons and wrote some amazing sentences! 

In maths we have been adding, subtracting and multiplying. 

In DT we have made two different shadow puppets.  On Tuesday we made simple shadow puppets using templates to explore what worked well and how to make the body parts move.  Then we designed and made our own shadow puppets.  There were puppets of a different shapes and sizes, some with moving parts, some with coloured cut outs,  but all wonderful. 

Next week Acorns will be building a role play rocket and Years 1 and 2 will be continuing their factual writing about the moon.  In DT we will be designing and making sock puppets. 

Term 3 Week 1

Happy New Year! 

It has been wonderful to welcome Oak class back to school this week and to see how ready all the children are to learn.  In PSHE the children all talked about their resolutions for the new school year and we these are displayed in the classroom to keep us on track! We have begun our new learning project of Space and over the next few weeks we will be learning facts about the solar system, finding out more about the brave scientists who ventured into space and the history of space exploration.  

This week we have started our DT learning project investigation puppets.  We learnt about the different types of puppets and the children created simple stick puppets and finger puppets which they then used to organise a puppet show. 

Next week we will be finding out about the Moon. and making shadow puppets.  

Term 2 Week 8

Our final few days of term have been full of festive preparations! We have finished our decorations created in our art lessons with Mrs Lovegrove and painted our salt dough decorations.  

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas and a happy new year from Oak Class! 


Term 2 Week 7

This week we have been reading the story of The Jolly Christmas Postman and KS1 enjoyed making their own books within books to take home.  

In maths there has been some impressive number formation and subtraction work from the Acorns and team work and problem solving from Year 1 and 2.  

We have also been busy making Christmas decorations in a number of different ways. 

Our Kindness tree is getting fuller and fuller with decorations and it is heart warming to hear all of the examples of kindness that the children are nominated for.   

Next week is our last week before the holidays and we will be busy presenting our Gymnastics display on Monday and putting the finishing touches to our decorations ready to take home. 


Term 2 Week 6 

This week we performed our nativity, Angel Express, and the children did the most wonderful job.  They spoke their lines clearly, sang beautifully and supported each other to do well. 

Year 1 and 2 have also been retelling the nativity story, working with a partner to edit and improve their work, Acorns have planted a Christmas surprise and in PE they have been practising hard for the gymnastics display next week. 

Next week we will be problem solving in maths and writing festive poetry in our English lessons. 


Term 2 Week 5

Rehearsals have continued this week and the children are doing a fantastic job of learning their lines and stage directions.  One more week to go! 

In between rehearsals we have continued our art lessons with Mrs Lovegrove, explored the frosty outside using our senses and begun celebrating Advent through our kindness calendar and Christmas Tree. 

Next week we perform Angel Express! 

Term 2 Week 4

This week we have been rehearsing our Nativity play Angel Express and we are very excited to perform it in just under two weeks.  

We have also been continuing our art lessons with Mrs Lovegrove and the end results are going to be beautiful! 

Acorns have been thinking about how the Police help us, reading the story of PC Ben and learning about all the different roles police officers have.  Year 1 and 2 have been studying the local buildings in Checkendon, learning about their purpose and what they are constructed from.  

Next week we will be celebrating the start of Advent.  

Term 2 Week 3 

This week we have been thinking about the importance of kindness.  On Wednesday we talked about the different forms of bullying, how to recognise bullying and what we can do to help if we see bullying.  One simple thing we can all do is to be kind to each other in small ways, a smile, saying please and thank you, holding doors open for each other.   The children created a wreath of kindness which is now on our classroom door. 

Year 1 and 2 have been busy learning about the Great Fire of London and what life was like for people living in London before the fire, the jobs they had and the types of houses they lived in.  Acorns have constructed a fire engine for their role play area and then enjoyed playing in it as well as having their first ICT lesson. We also had an art lesson with Mrs Lovegrove and began rehearsing our nativity play! 

Next week we continue our rehearsals and will find out more about Samuel Pepys. 

Term 2 Week 2

This week Year 1 and 2 have begun learning about The Great Fire of London reading the story of Toby and The Great Fire of London and using a timeline to understand when it happened.  Acorns have been thinking about People Who Help Us and have started creating their own fire engine!  On Tuesday Mrs Lovegrove taught the first in a series of art lessons thinking about fire.  The children explored pastels in warm colours to create fiery pictures.

We were very lucky on Wednesday to be visited by the firefighters from Goring Fire Station.  The children were shown all the different safety equipment fire engines carry as well as learning about the different jobs fire fighters do.  On Thursday the children learnt about Fire Safety with Mrs Harbord, designing posters ready for our Fireworks this evening.  

We also received this beautiful card from King Charles and Queen Camilla thanking Oak class for the card and letters we wrote on the occasion of their coronation.  

Next week Year 1 and 2 will be learning about Samuel Pepys whilst Acorns will learn about how medical professionals helps us. 

Term 2 Week 1

We have had a very busy first week back! This week we have been learning about Diwali, telling the story of Rama and Sita, creating Rangoli patterns, making Diwa lamps and firework art.  In English we made lanterns before writing our own instructions, in Maths Year 1 and 2 tackled subtraction whilst Acorns learnt about 2d shapes, making rockets using the shapes.  

We have also begun to think about people who help us.  Acorns have had a great time exploring different outfits in the role play area. 

Next week we look forward to welcoming Firefighters from Goring Fire Station for a visit to learn about fire safety. 

Term 1 Week 7 

This week we held our Seaside Art Exhibition, celebrated Autumn by reading the story of Pumpkin Soup, baking hedgehog bread, cooking and tasting pumpkin soup and created some wonderful Autumn acrostic poetry with year 2 using dictionaries to expand their vocabulary!  

After half term we will be beginning our new learning project - The Great Fire of London. 

Term 1 Week 6

This week we have begun our Science learning project thinking all about the Seasons and the changes they bring.  Acorns have been reading the story of Pumpkin Soup and created their own beautiful pumpkins by mixing paint to create shades of orange. In English we have been looking at instructions, making sandwiches (which we then enjoyed eating!) and then writing our own instructions to make a disgusting sandwich. 

On Thursday the whole class went into the countryside surrounding our school for an Autumn walk, we listened to birds singing, rain dripping from the trees, our wellies clomping and saw so many wonderful natural changes from leaves falling to fungi growing.  

Next week we will be looking at different tree types and seed dispersal.  


Term 1 Week 5

What a busy week celebrating harvest amongst our maths and English learning! We had a live (and very active) online STEM lesson learning all about harvesting vegetables and dairy products used in creating a Thali dish. We attended the harvest service on church on Wednesday and thought about farmers and how they help us.  Acorns also created a delicious apple and pear crumble, learning to chop carefully, rub in the butter and mix in the oats and flour.  As well as being busy bakers Acorns also thought about the seasonal changes at this time of year and created a beautiful autumn wreath for the classroom door.  

Term 1 Week 4

This week Year 1 and 2 have been retelling the story of The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch, they have used some wonderful language in their work!  In maths Acorns have been hunting high and low all over school for 2d shapes, whilst Oak class have been racing cars to learn about ordinal numbers.  Acorns have also been exploring their senses, creating a tactile picture and using a variety of musical instruments.  

In the afternoons we have been learning about famous artists who have depicted the sea, creating our own versions of their paintings.  

Next week we will be celebrating Harvest. 

Term 1 Week 3

This week we have been learning about rock pool habitats and all the different creatures who live in them.  We then used our knowledge to begin creating our own.  They are still a work in progress but we are looking forward to sharing them with everyone at our art exhibition (date tbc) soon.  We have also been writing lists and captions in English, working on place value and number sequences in maths, ball skills in PE and learning seaside songs in music.  

Next week we will be studying seaside artists and creating our own work in their style. 

Term 1 Week 2 

This week we have had a great time at the seaside.  In English we have been reading The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch, in PSHE we learnt about the important work done by the RNLI who have been keeping people safe for 200 years and we had our Seaside themed day on Wednesday which brought our learning project to life.  The children made sandcastles, ice cream and had a workshop from Oxfordshire museum services where they were able to handle artifacts, dress up and find out all about seaside holidays in the past. 

On Wednesday we also held our election for school council members and I was so impressed with the quality of speeches delivered by all the children, it was clear how much time and thought they had put into preparing them.  Well done everyone who stood for election.  

Next week we will beginning our Art learning project looking at how a variety of artists have represented the seaside in their work.  


Term 1 Week 1

It was wonderful to welcome our new starters (Acorns) and our returning children to Oak Class this week.  They have all settled into school brilliantly! 

This week has been all about getting to know each other, sharing our holiday news and reminding ourselves about school values and expectations.  We had our first Forest School sessions of the year, began our learning project and had a great time using the parachute in PE.  In English Year 1 and 2 created summer holiday postcards, whilst Acorns shared the story of Owl Babies.  In Maths Year 1 and 2 looked at place value and representations of numbers whilst Acorns sang lots of different number songs.  

Next week we will be having a Seaside themed day as part of our learning project I do like to be beside the seaside!