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Anything is possible!

When I first started this blog I was just starting my Masters in Education. What a journey it has been! Stressful days, laughs in lectures and I sometimes sat and questioned myself! The work load of teaching as a full time teacher is demanding in itself, but adding a masters degree in the mix is hard to describe!

I’ve definitely had to make sacrifices. Spend weekends in the library at times. Sometimes I’ve felt drained as if I’ve hit the wall… but it had been an amazing and rewarding journey!

I did it!!! 3 years of strict(ish) time management and typing until I’m blue in the face. 🤣

My key message is aim high!

Anything is possible when you put your mind to it. I have learned so much through this degree and it has helped me gain many opportunities.

If you have a goal or even a dream job that you keep holding off. Just do it. Life’s too short to say hmm I should of…

Just go for it as you never know where it might take you!

Ooh how can I miss this video clip out!🤣

#MissPinnock

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Teaching phonics

The teaching of phonics can be done in so many ways!

Here are my top tips on what has worked well for the classes I’ve taught.

Partner work

I always have parts of my lesson with children learning / consolidating sounds with a partner.

We play a range of phonics games with a partner such as roll and read and bingo and they love working together to read and play the games.

A great activity children seem to love is one I use with a timer.

All you need to do is create a grid of words (up to you how many words you would like children to read) and then children using a lollipop stick with their partner to take in turns to read the words down and then across the page.

The winning partners are the ones that manage to do it before the end of the timer. So simple and easy to prep yet the children love it!

Always consolidating

Some children need to see the words or sounds up 40 times before they are able to remember it. Consolidating sounds and reading words you have previously read is key. I read and spell 3 previously learnt words with my class and 3 words with the new sound in every day to help embed them.

High frequency words are also important to practise throughout the week. Each day we read 3 high frequency words- discussing why they are tricky words and then I spend Fridays practising spelling the words too.

Frequent assessment to inform planning

Assessing the children regularly helps to gain a real understanding of the sounds they have remembered. That way you can use this to reteach or introduce new sounds that are needed to meet the needs of the children.

Routine

My phonics lessons have the same routine each day so that children are aware of the activities, what’s coming next and what we will be doing. The use of whiteboards and pens are great for phonics and works well too. I often use these at the beginning of the lesson for spelling before moving onto games and writing/ reading.

Self assessment

I always think it’s a great idea to get the children to self correct their writing band spelling as soon as we have don’t them. Instant feedback is effective and enables the children to see their mistakes and find out how to improve instantly too!

After spelling a word the children tick each sound and check alongside my writing. We repeat this for writing sentences too.

Continuous provision in year 1

It’s the first time I have carried out continuous provision throughout the day every day in year 1 and I have to say it’s great!

It has allowed time for children to get the scaffolding and differentiation needed to meet their needs whilst the rest of the children are working at their level with carefully challenged enhancements and play opportunities.

I am so glad that I purchased open ended scrap resources for play from scrap magic and scrap store. This has helped children to develop their own creativity and ideas whilst i’ve been in the background adding further suggestions when needed to further their learning.

The children have really enjoyed creating and building their own castles in the small world as part of our castle topics.

They also create their own stories and add enhancements of their own to our castle role play. The children have created recipes, magic spells and menus linked to their own interests.

Play is definitely valuable in year 1, it’s just about getting the environment and enhancements to a good level for the children! Purposeful play can certainly be created without an an adult having to constantly stay in provision with the children too!

Let me know your thoughts.

#MissPinnock

Continuous provision in year 1

It’s the first time I have carried out continuous provision throughout the day every day in year 1 and I have to say it’s great!

It has allowed time for children to get the scaffolding and differentiation needed to meet their needs whilst the rest of the children are working at their level with carefully challenged enhancements and play opportunities.

I am so glad that I purchased open ended scrap resources for play from scrap magic and scrap store. This has helped children to develop their own creativity and ideas whilst i’ve been in the background adding further suggestions when needed to further their learning.

The children have really enjoyed creating and building their own castles in the small world as part of our castle topics.

They also create their own stories and add enhancements of their own to our castle role play. The children have created recipes, magic spells and menus linked to their own interests.

Play is definitely valuable in year 1, it’s just about getting the environment and enhancements to a good level for the children! Purposeful play can certainly be created without an an adult having to constantly stay in provision with the children too!

Let me know your thoughts.

#MissPinnock

Continuous provision in year 1

It’s the first time I have carried out continuous provision throughout the day every day in year 1 and I have to say it’s great!

It has allowed time for children to get the scaffolding and differentiation needed to meet their needs whilst the rest of the children are working at their level with carefully challenged enhancements and play opportunities.

I am so glad that I purchased open ended scrap resources for play from scrap magic and scrap store. This has helped children to develop their own creativity and ideas whilst i’ve been in the background adding further suggestions when needed to further their learning.

The children have really enjoyed creating and building their own castles in the small world as part of our castle topics.

They also create their own stories and add enhancements of their own to our castle role play. The children have created recipes, magic spells and menus linked to their own interests.

Play is definitely valuable in year 1, it’s just about getting the environment and enhancements to a good level for the children! Purposeful play can certainly be created without an an adult having to constantly stay in provision with the children too!

Let me know your thoughts.

#MissPinnock

Developing reading skills in year 1!

Teaching reading in year 1 is such a hard balance. Do I teach guided reading but get around 5% engagement from the children? Do I try to make my little year ones sit and read all at the same time? Do I try to squeeze in 2 or 3 readers at snack time!?

I have tried all sorts!! And I can imagine you have too. But this year I am (fingers crossed) finding a balance.

Having continuous provision in year 1 is a great way of creating time to read one to one with children whilst the rest of the class engage in appropriately challenged play activities. After all the best independent activity for children to engage in is play right?!

Independent activity in provision!

My teaching assistant and I currently read one to one with a child every week for this half term. The children are still transitioning from Reception and require time too. It is a great way to check reading books and records and find out if children need moving up on colour bands too.

As we move towards the end of the Autumn 2 term, I plan to create a whole class guided reading session. However, I do not like the traditional ‘everybody listen and read a page’ guided reading session.

By guided reading I mean whole class engagement.

I will provide children with a very important teacher stick (lollipop stick) they will work in pairs with a mixed ability partner in groups. The children will take in turns to read a page of a book each.

Image result for lollipop stick

The partner that is not reading will point to each word for their partner to read.That way every child has to maintain focus on the book. I always make the children feel very important by explaining that they are the teacher and they have to correct their partner if they make a mistake too!

These teaching strategies are similar to the read write inc program. It is a great way for me as the teacher and my teaching assistant to walk around the room and listen to children read pages of the book.

I will also create questions for children to read and answer with their partners when they get use to it too.

More blogs about these strategies will be out when I start to give it a go!

Image result for reading quote for kids

#MissPinnock

Vegetable fun in year 1!

It’s been a busy half term of settling in, rules and routines and getting to know my new class.

We are lucky enough to have a farm at school, so the children found a trial of vegetables last week…

and the book… Oliver’s vegetables!

We followed the trail and tasted lots of different vegetables.

We went to the farm to find the vegetables in the story…

I enhanced the provision by linking it to the story.

The children really love the challenges in different areas and enjoy earning dojo points for them too.

This week we have been busy making vegetable soup with the vegetables we’ve harvested at the farm.

We have invited parents in too, to taste our delicious soup!

The children have designed their own soup and planned the equipment we need.

Some vegetables have also come alive! The children have really enjoyed writing sentences linked to what the vegetables might say.

Dojo challenges linked to gaining dojo points are a great incentive for children to challenge themselves in provision.

In the phonics area I created a silly sentence activity sheet.

The children had to pick different words out to create a silly sentence.

The main skill here was to reinforce capital letters, full stops and finger spaces. The children love creating them too!

The children have enjoyed a range of independent tasks and it’s helped me to assess who has really understood what we are learning too.

Here the children had to cut out and read the words to sort them into different sounds. I have focused on the sounds we are currently reviewing in phonics.

Numicon is a great way to gain a deeper understanding of number bonds. The children have used the numicon and boards to find many different number bonds to 10!

Some children have also recorded them on the blank addition and equals sheets.

Keep a look out as I will be uploading provision sheets for you to download for free!

#MissPinnock

4 weeks on…rules and routines!

It is so important to establish rules and routines in the first half term of school. As I am in year 1 and having continuous provision (CP) within the curriculum, it has been crucial (but extremely hard work) to teach children how to look after resources and use them appropriately.

I can now see children tidying up the areas properly but most important effectively using the provision.

Child have used this area to practise writing sentence. They have problem solved by creating their own recipes and meals with their friends.

The small world area and construction areas provide open ended scrap resources. It has been great to see the children’s creativity as they design and create their own models and stories.

Children really do see things so different to how we as adults do, so their models have been pretty amazing and beyond what I could think of!

I have got to the point where I feel that I can teach small groups whilst the rest of the children are purposely learning through play.

Play is effective when it is at the right level, with activities children can access and also with some adult interaction!

We use class dojo points, this really helps as an incentive for children to stay focused and play purposely in all areas of provision. The best part is… its free to use too! Take a look by clicking the link.

More enhancements and posts of CP in Year 1 will continue!

#MissPinnock

All set for Year one!

After a super busy holidays, my classroom is finally ready for the year one children tomorrow.

After an amazing chat with Gregg, the author of the book ‘can I go and play now?’ I was eager to set up open ended provision for children. Children are imaginative, extremely creative and see things completely different to us adults. So why discourage this with closed activities and themes?

I have aimed to create a natural classroom, with open-ended play activities to encourage and value creativity and independence in play – whilst also meeting the objectives of the national curriculum!

I will be blogging about it throughout the year so I will keep you posted!

So this marks the first post. I am just going to post an insight into each area of provision I have created, with a bit of reasoning behind it….

My Notice board!

This has a few bits of useful information on such as a timetable and rota’s, along with some lovely motivational teacher gifts which I have previously received!

As a safety procedure it’s important to know the number of children in the class am and pm each day. I decided to link this into place value and maths. The children will count how many children are here in different ways and help write and discuss the amount too!

Maths talk is so important in building up understanding in mathematics, so having it as part of a routine is an easy way of children developing greater depth.

The maths area contains a range of resources that children can independently access.

There are challenges on the table tops for children to explore.

I have prepared the maths area as an assessment to see who can order numbers, recognise them and understand number bonds to 10.

As the children move on throughout year one, there will be written challenges based on maths mastery lessons and linked to the the White Rose maths schemes of work! This scheme has amazing ideas for developing understanding in maths.

I am really encouraging the fact that writing should be everywhere this year, and the children will be encouraged to use clipboards, create books and stories, write lists and letters in any area of provision linked to their own interests.

I have also created a stationery stop to influence children to pick up stationery and use it anywhere… as long at they tidy up too!!

I am super excited to have enough space in Year 1 to create a DT area. The children will independently set up their area with either junk materials or paints and create whatever they wish!

I am looking forward to displaying their artwork too and encouraging their creativity.

The construction area has developed over time and I am excited to enhance children’s creativity with loose parts, as well as blocks and Lego.

I have got some shelf space for children to display their models and further space on another unit for them to display their models too!

I know how frustrated children get when another child breaks their model, so hopefully this will help, as their model will be celebrated by the rest of the class before being destroyed!

The start of year one will begin with a home corner.

Children will relate to a familiar environment, but hopefully a more up levelled version!

I have added weighing scales, real life objects such as cornflake boxes and tin cans of soup. I have also added pasta and potatoes too! Which will link in well with our soup making later on in the half term.

I am eager to see how children play and respond to real life objects….

As part of a daily routine and another opportunity for maths talk, children will come in and vote for the book they would like to listen to at story time.

We will discuss the groups of more and less to begin with and move onto discussing ways of counting them linked to 2s, 5s and 10s.

This has been a tricky corner to think about.. I am starting off by encouraging fine motor skills and building up their development from EYFS.

As we move on into the year, this area will progress into investigations and research where iPads, books and resources will be used!

I strongly believe in writing being available in all areas of provision. So this time I have only considered a phonics area near the reading area.

I have tried to encourage reading by creating a cosy area for children to quietly read a book.

I have also added loose parts and wooden people to encourage children to creatively make up their own story in the small world area.

This week is a focus on getting to know the children and setting high expectations in provision!

Good luck to all of those going back…

#MissPinnock

Holidays are nearly coming to an end!

Well the holidays are nearly over!

I have been the most busiest this holiday and I am still working hard now, but all for future goals and achievements!

I hope everyone has had a lovely summer and if you’re a teacher – feel a little bit refreshed!

I purchased this teacher diary (classed as a lesson planner) on amazon …

and it has lovely motivational quotes on each page.

I also purchased this cute notebook from Wilkinson’s too!

Hopefully it will be used as a way of getting through the bumpy ride that teaching brings!

I am looking forward to sharing photos of my classroom on my next blog post! I have really focused on a curiosity approach with natural learning environments!

#letskeeprelaxing

#netflixdaybeforeschool!

#MissPinnock