Year 2 Curriculum Letter
Thank you for all the support you have shown the children over the last year in school. We hope you enjoy the well-earned rest. Your child’s new teachers would love to hear about all your holiday adventures when they return in September. We ask that you keep a holiday scrap book to bring back to school when they start their new class. These have been a great success over the past few years and children really enjoy discussing their scrapbooks with their new teachers.
As the children move into Year 2 they take on the responsibility of being the oldest children in the school. With this in mind the children take part in a variety of activities such as: school clubs; being on the school council and eco committee; being library helpers; lunchtime monitors; taking the role of playground buddies for the reception children; etc.
The main topic in Term 1 will be ‘The great fire’ where the children will be learning about the Great Fire of London. The curriculum has been designed so that, where appropriate, other activities are linked to this central theme. Please bring any (empty!) individual cereal boxes you have at home into school to help us with a surprise we have planned for later in the term.
Creative Activities Afternoon
We always look at our curriculum to ensure the children are able to enjoy a wider range of activities and work with children from other classes in the year group.
On a Friday afternoon the children are split into groups that are a mix of children from all three year 2 classes. They then take part in activities designed to enrich our curriculum. This year these activities will be music lessons, games with a specialist coach, science experiments and Forest School. This year we are able to offer the Forest School experience to all Year 2 children.
A letter will be sent out in September outlining the choice of after-school and lunchtime clubs offered by the staff. Once your child has signed up to a club they must be encouraged to attend every week.
Continuous Provision in Y2
We are very lucky in Y2 to have an extra room and access to outdoor areas throughout the day. During this topic the children will be using these spaces throughout the afternoon to broaden their understanding and learn through a range of investigation based activities. These will include taking on roles, exploring construction activities, investigations with malleable materials, art activities and many more exciting opportunities to explore.
Over the next term we will be studying narrative, looking at language patterns in poetry and writing instructions.
Within these contexts the children will have the opportunity to:
- read aloud with intonation and expression appropriate to the grammar and punctuation of a sentence;
- secure their understanding and use of simple sentences in their own writing;
- discuss and compare story themes;
- present dialogue using speech bubbles in pictures and speech marks in writing;
- write rhyming poems using existing structures; write a recount based on an experience;
- use dictionaries, glossaries and reference books.
Spelling and Phonics
Children will continue to receive daily phonics lessons in Year 2. These are designed to build on the phonics the children have gained during Reception and Year 1. As the children progress through Year 2 we would expect them to become independent spellers using both their phonic knowledge and dictionary skills to spell with increasing accuracy. All children will receive the same spelling lists each week. The lists are based on words children need to be able to spell by the end of Year 2. These lists are designed to support and extend children of all abilities. These words will need to be learnt and practised at home with your child ready for a test each Friday. By supporting your child’s spelling while they write their reading diary, you will be helping them to apply their phonic skills in context.
The year 2 children are taught maths in the morning and in the afternoon for around 20 minutes from Monday to Thursday. The morning maths sessions focus on new learning while afternoon maths will be working on securing what the children already know. Maths homework is given out on a Wednesday and must be returned by the following Monday.
Please support your child in the completion of their weekly maths homework. This will encourage the children to explain their thinking. Children can be helped at home with oral maths, addition and subtraction, and counting objects in 1s, 2s, 5s and 10s. Other skills to practise are telling the time, counting pocket money, looking for prices, weights and liquid measures at the supermarket and in the kitchen. We return regularly to these skills, but any additional practice is invaluable.
The children will be studying the topic of ‘Forces and Materials’. During this topic children will explore pushes and pulls as forces, how pushes and pulls cause objects to move, stop, change speed, direction and shape. They will be taught to name the property of materials which can be squashed, bent, twisted and stretched. They will explore how forces affect the movements of their bodies during PE and will carry out an investigation where they can compare and record the effects of forces on objects.
Art and design
Our design and technology project this term is to make a pencil case. The children design and make a pencil case using a variety of different materials and skills. Our art work will begin by looking at mark making using medieval houses as a starting point. All children should have a named old shirt in school every day to wear during art activities.
For our music this term we will be exploring ‘The Long and the Short of it’ looking at duration. Pupils will learn to make and control long and short sounds using voices and instruments. They will also learn to work in a small group of children to compose and perform sequences. Alongside this, the year two children are able to learn an instrument with a visiting teacher (violin or cello) at an extra cost. Extra singing activities will also be offered to those signing up for Choir Club. Children will learn songs during assembly and will sing every day at school.
The children will be taking part in gym and dance sessions this term. The dance the children create is linked with our Great Fire of London theme. In gym the children will be learning to remember, repeat and link combinations of gymnastic actions. Children need their P.E. kit in school everyday. This should consist of a t-shirt, a pair of shorts, tracksuit bottoms and plimsolls or trainers. Earrings cannot be worn during P.E. Children with long hair will need to have it tied up or bring in a band for PE lessons.
This term children will be learning about programming. They will learn how to give a set of instructions for simple devices to follow. They will also learn how to use simple programming software on the class computers. The children can support and develop their subject knowledge by accessing ‘Purple Mash’ at home or in school.
RE and PSHE
We use the Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus for RE. Our first topic is ‘Who is a Muslim and how do they live?’ The children will explore what a Muslim believes and what difference this makes to how they live. In PSHE, the children will be learning about managing risk. They will think about times when they might experience danger and how to keep themselves safe.
Home Reading and Reading Diaries
The class teacher supervises the reading books taken home, but the children will choose their own books. These may not always be at your child’s reading level but are to share at home with you (how are we checking there is a balance of reading for pleasure and challenge??). Your child should complete the Reading Diary at least once a week. Each entry must include the date, title of the book, author and a comment written by your child. As children progress through year two we would expect their comments to become more detailed. The Reading Diaries are an excellent way to support the teaching of writing that happens in school. It is important to encourage children to read a wide variety of different texts including non-fiction. Books do not have to be returned daily.
Offers of help
Offers of classroom help are always much appreciated. If you do want to help please give your class teacher a note with the times you are available. We really appreciate parents who will come and listen to children read.
School begins at 8.50 each morning. Please ensure children are lined up ready to enter the classroom just before this time. To ensure the children are kept safe the gate for Magenta and the door for Indigo and Violet class will be shut as soon as the teachers bring the children in from the line.
Neil Owens (Head of KS1)
Eleanor Hunt Jane Morgan