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Year R

Welcome to the Caterpillar and Tadpole Class Page


What we are learning about this half term

What are we learning about this half term?

Fruit Kebab Fun!


We have been learning about how to keep put bodies healthy. So we decided to make fruit kebabs. We then wrote instructions of how to make them using 'bossy words'. Including 'wash' 'chop' 'put' and 'eat' we even made up actions to help us remember!







When we came back from the Easter holidays there was a giant beanstalk running around the classrooms! We wondered how it got there - We came to the conclusion that Mum had thrown Jacks magic beans out of the window!


We have had lots of fun looking at spring, we have been on a spring walk where we found nests, buds, blossom and even tadpoles in the school pond. We now have some tadpoles inside so we can watch them change into frogs. We have also looked closely at tulips and sketched these in our sketch books. Miss Heslop and Mrs Pike were really impressed with our sketching skills.

The Easter Bunny needed our help!

We had a letter from the Easter Bunny - we did such a great job in the challenge he set us that we completed a fun Easter Egg hunt with a twist - we had to match the symmetrical patterns! We then enjoyed a chocolate egg each!


World Book Day


We all dressed up as out favourite book characters - Can you guess who we are?


Zoo Lab


We were lucky enough to have some special visitors. We learnt more about Millipedes, Tarantulas and snakes.

Number Workshop 


A HUGE thank you to all the friends and family members that came along to our number workshop! We hope you found it helpful and now have a greater  insight into how we teach and develop maths skills at school.



Gong Hei Fat Choy


We have been celebrating Chinese New Year in Year R. We have taken part in many different activities to celebrate the occasion. These included: Playing in our very own Chinese Restaurant, writing a menu for our restaurant, making a dragon mask and even creating a dragon dance! At the end of the week we were very lucky and got to try some real life Chinese food! Have a look at some of the great pictures from our celebrations!

Bob the Builder needs our help!



Poor Bob the builder left us a letter explaining that, silly Rolly accidently rolled over his arm and now it is hurt. This means he is unable to do any of his builder jobs. So he asked us if we would help with building a town.

We said



We decided to go on a walk around Millbrook to look at all the different buildings and gather some information and inspiration!

Welcome back!

We hope that you have had an enjoyable Christmas.


The first week back we have been exploring winter, we have been set the challenge to melt ice - we came up with different ways such as putting it in the sun, hitting it with a hammer and even putting it next to a radiator! 


We have also been set the challenge to make an igloo using sugar cubes - it is trickier than it looks!


Happy new year from the Year R team 


The First Christmas! 

  Image result for nativity story clipart

We have been learning about the story of the 'First Christmas' we enjoyed dressing up and sequencing the story.

 Phonics Workshop Fun!    

A big thank you to all those friends and family members that attended our phonics workshop! We hope you found it useful seeing how we teach reading and writing at school. If you have any further questions/ concerns about your child's reading please ask a member of the year R team. We hope you are as impressed as we are of the children's progress so far!


A quick reminder that book bags with reading logs need to be in school everyday so we can change reading books. If you need a new reading card please let us  know.


Here is a list of useful apps and websites that may be of some help at home


Thank you very much for your continued support!


The year R team




Geraldine the Giraffe's Tricky Words 3

SUBSCRIBE to our channel Watch Mr Thorne and Geraldine the Giraffe take you on a learning journey through the world of phonics, learning letters and sounds along the way.

                     Superhero day


On Friday we were introduced to Mansel Parks very own superhero's. We were introduced to Captain Can Do, Incredible Thinker and Daring Discoverer, we also dressed up as our favourite Superhero's while taking part in skills that encouraged us to use be these superhero's. Which superhero's will we be this week?

Who Stole our Treasure!?


This half term our topic is 'All at Sea'. We were excited to show the children our special Mansel Park treasure chest, but, it was gone! All that was left was a scroll from the mean Captain Sam Salt!!!



So for the next few weeks we need to prove to Captain Sam Salt that we can work together as a team and be a good pirate crew!

                           Road Safety


We have had a very busy and exciting first half term in school. This week we have been learning about keeping safe on the roads. We have had a visit from our local BRAKE road safety officer, practised crossing the road on the playground and even made our own traffic lights. 


We learned that when crossing the road we need to STOP, LOOK, LISTEN and THINK.


Still image for this video
We have all been working very hard on being able to write our names.

 Mansel Park hospital


As part of this half terms topic 'All about me' we have been playing in our very own hospital.  


We then received a letter from the tooth fairy asking for our help - as they were new to the job and needed Caterpillars and Tadpoles to explain how to care for teeth. As a thank you 'Terry' the tooth fairy gave everyone a toothbrush and toothpaste. 



Shhhhhh What can you hear?


To help with our early stages of reading we have been practising our listening skills. We went on a listening walk around the school with our special listening ears. We heard many different environmental sounds in and out of school.



We had a great first day at school, look how busy we were!

Superhero Fashion Show... and POSE!


Thank you to all the friends and family who attended our superhero fashion show. The children's home learning projects were fantastic so a BIG thank you for all the effort put into their incredible costumes!


Hope you all have a lovely Summer Holidays and good luck in year 1 


From the Year R Team

Real Life Superhero Visit

We had a visit from a 'real life' superhero - a paramedic! Simon came and visited the Caterpillars and Tadpoles. He showed us his medical equipment as well as what he has to wear. 

Theatre Fun!  

We had a fantastic time going to see the Gruffalo's Child at the Nuffield Theatre. It was a great show and the Caterpillars and Tadpoles represented the school beautifully!


Saints Foundation Fun!


In Year R we had a great time with the guys from the Saints Foundation. We showed off our football skills and learnt some new ones too!

A big thank you to everyone who has brought their sponsor  money into school. Prizes and the total raised will be known soon!

The Farm! 


We are very fortunate to have a good relationship with Chilton Manor Farm. They are a fully working farm and we were lucky enough to go a visit. On a beautiful sunny day we were able to see and do lots of different things. These included, sheering sheep, creating mini sheep from wool, grinding wheat and even looking at the gigantic combine harvester. The children were so well behaved and well mannered! In the afternoon we were able to explore the woodland behind the farm and even found a rope swing! The children were able to learn so much about a working farm and the origins of our food before it reaches the supermarket. 

Growing  Sunflowers               

We have been learning about what plants needs to grow and how to take care of them. We have planted our own sunflowers and each week we are going to watch them grow and write our own diaries.

Who's That Trip Trapping Over My Bridge! 


We have been enjoying reading the story of the 3 Billy Goats Gruff! The children have really got involved with the retelling of the story, some children taking the role of the goats and some as the nasty troll.  We have been thinking of some amazing wow words to describe the smelly, evil, stinky, mean, horrible, nasty troll! We have also been using our maths skills to measure and order the large, medium and small sized goats as well as other things around the classroom by size! Pictures to follow...

Run, run, run as fast as you can...

We have been enjoying the story of the Gingerbread man. We are fantastic at re-telling the story and we wrote captions of our favourite parts. We then thought about alternative endings to the story, so we experimented with other ways the gingerbread man could cross the river. Some of us made boats and others made bridges. We then tested out our ideas with a real Gingerbread man. This activity  was good at using our 'Characteristics of Learning'.

Story Man Visit


We had a visit from the 'Story Teller' and he told us the story of the Gingerbread Man. The children listened extremely well and were fantastic at joining in with...


           "Run, Run, Run as fast as you can. You can't catch

                           me I'm the Gingerbread man"




However, the Story Teller is losing his memory and needs our help to learn all about the other traditional tales!


So that is our challenge this half term! 

Internet Safety Week in Year R


We have been learning all about internet safety. In particular our school slogan of 'Lock it, Block it, Show it, Tell it' and what it means to us! We hope you liked the postcards we brought home that we decorated, which also had helpful hints on the back for friends and family at home.




We shared this video with the Caterpillars and Tadpoles as part of internet safety week.

Gong Hei Fat Choy


We have been celebrating Chinese New Year in Year R. We have taken part in many different activities to celebrate the occasion. These included: Playing in our very own Chinese Restaurant, writing a menu for our restaurant, making a dragon mask and even creating a dragon dance! At the end of the week we were very lucky and got to try some real life Chinese food! Have a look at some of the great pictures from our celebrations! 

Who Built the Ark?    


The past couple of weeks we have been enjoying  the story of Noah’s Ark.


As part of this topic we have been learning about doubles we especially enjoy the ‘doubles wrap’



We practised sequencing the story as well as creating our own rainbows. The home learning projects brought into school were amazing! Thank you to all the friends and family that came to our exhibition.


Can we fix it? Yes we can!


We have had an exciting few weeks in Year R. It all began with the visit of Bob the Builder! The children were so excited to see him, unfortunately he was involved in an accident over the Christmas period and hurt his arm! He asked the children if they could help him with his jobs whilst he was on the mend. The children, of course, said yes. These jobs included, designing and building their own model buildings, sorting out the right building shape, creating a building on the computer and writing a catchphrase for Bob's new television programme. For their support, Bob bought the children a cake each! Have a look below to see what we've been up to. 

Christmas Alphabet!


Thank you to all the friends and family that came along to our Christmas performance, we hoped you enjoyed it! The children worked really hard learning all the songs and actions.


We hope you all have a Fantastic Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Pirates!! ARGHH! 


We were very surprised down in Year R to find that a treasure chest had been left in the classrooms! We were so excited to see what was on the inside but there was a catch! There was no key only a letter. In this letter the bad pirate Captain Sam Salt instructed us to do many different pirate jobs in order to become a good pirate crew and get the key back! These jobs included; walking the plank, making our own pirate ships and flags, creating a desert island, learning a pirate dance and even writing directly to Sam himself! We had such good fun becoming pirates! In the end Sam return the key with one last twist... we had to find where he had hidden it using some clues. We some good brain power we found it! 

Phonics Workshop


A HUGE thank you to all the friends and family that came along to our phonics workshop. It was fantastic to see so many of you attending and learning about how we teach phonics. The children clearly enjoyed 'showing off' what they had already learnt. 


We had 8 stations with various phonics activities and once they had visited  each station they received a stamp. Once all 8 were stamped each child received a 'goody bag' and a certificate. 


If you were unable to attend the workshop please do not worry,  we are hoping to hold another phonics workshop in the Spring term, to go into greater depth about digraphs and trigraphs. If you have any further questions about phonics then please do not hesitate to ask!


Here is a list of useful websites regarding phonics... - Jolly Phonics Songs


Usefull apps...


Jolly phonics letters and sounds app


Thank you for your continued support!





Happy Birthday Brown Bear!     



We have been celebrating Brown Bear's 5th Birthday!


We were lucky enough to receive a  party invitation to his birthday party on the Friday. All we week we learnt about birthdays and compared how we celebrate them. We enjoyed counting candles as part of maths, making birthday cakes out of playdough and even writing party invitations and birthday cards for Brown Bear! Then finally,  it was Friday, and we had a great time dancing and playing party games!

Stop! Look! Listen! Think!


In Year R we have been looking at crossing the road and road safety. We were very excited to have a visit from a real life lollipop lady called Lisa. She was super helpful by answering our questions and showing how to cross the road safely. We have been practicing crossing the road, making traffic lights and learning to drive. Have a look at the photos below to see what we've been up to! 

Getting Ready for Reading!


To get ourselves ready for reading, we have been practising our 'listening skills'. In groups, we went on a listening walk with Mrs Holloway to listen out for various sounds around the school.

We have also been learning about rhyme and rhythm as part of 'Phase 1 Phonics'. We have become very good at match words that rhyme! Here is a link to 'Cake Bake' a game on Phonics Play so you can carry on practising and showing off your rhyming skills at home!







Look how much fun we have had already at school...


First Day of School


This week we have been welcoming our new Caterpillars and Tadpoles to Mansel Park! They all arrived looking so smart in their brand new uniforms ready for school. We have been so impressed with how polite and grown up they have all been. Below you can see the photos we have taken of them on their first day (more photos to come). We have had a lot of fun on the transition days and look forward to many more days full of fun! Well done for a fantastic start to school life. 

Year R Awards

During our last week of term we had a Year R Awards ceremony... we celebrated all the hard work the children have put in during their first year of school. We invited friends and family into school to join in with the celebrations and to have look through the children's books and learning journeys. 


Thank you to all those who made this a wonderful afternoon and Caterpillars and Tadpoles good luck in year 1, you will be great!


Year R Assemble!!

Year R joined forces to create the ultimate super hero costume and super hero pose! We practised at school during the week to perfect our poses. On Friday afternoon, as part of the children’s home learning project all the grown-ups came to school for a cat walk to show off the wonderfully made costumes. The children joined in to make some terrific super hero poses. It was great to see so many grown-ups and children joining in. The cat walk was a great chance for the children show off all the hard work that had been put in. Please look at the pictures below to see some of what we did.  

Whatever Next!


We recently enjoyed reading the story 'Whatever Next' by Jill Murphy.  This story made us think about what we would take to the moon ? We had some really good ideas such as Food, our friends, toy car, camera and even our pets! We pretended we had just landed on the moon and even had biscuit just like baby bear!





Whatever Next!

Whatever Next!
By Jill Murphy.
Read by The Story Teller.

Giant African Land Snail!

We had a special visit from a Giant African Land Snail. We had him in the Year R base for a whole week. We fed him lettuce and cucumber and he loved being sprayed by the water. We all got to have a feel of his shell.


If you want to find out more about these amazing creatures visit