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Year One

Hello and welcome to Year 1.

Summer 1 2024

In science this half term, Year 1 have been learning about plants. They made observational drawings of fruit and seeds. They also drew and labelled growing plants. Year 1 observed broad beans growing over time and recorded their growth.



In computing, Year 1 have been learning about algorithms. They have programed bee-bots and used an app on the iPad. They have also been learning about direction and turns in maths.


In History this half-term Year 1 have been learning about changes during the past 50 years. They have looked at photos of changes in technology, laundry, schools, fashion and interior design and arranged them from 1950s to the present day.


They have used watercolour to paint changes in fashion, made collages with photos and used powder paints to paint pictures on poor quality paper as children did before the 1990s.


The children also interviewed Mrs Barker and learnt lots about her school and home life when she was a child.

In art, Year 1 have been doing a topic on Bugs and Butterflies. They have observed caterpillars metamorphosis into adult butterflies.


They have looked at the work of Matisse and Damian Hurst and produced collage and paintings in their style.


They have also used clay to make mini-beast sculptures.



Spring 2 2024

In English, Year 1 have been reading 'Meerkat Mail'.  They have written adventure stories and non-chronological reports about animals.



Year 1 have also written poems about minibeasts.


Year 1 enjoyed dressing up to celebrate World Book Day!

During science week, Year 1 carried out a number of investigations involving observing over time.

We used skittles and observed what happened when water was added to the middle of the plate. We then changed some variables as scientists do. We observed the same experiment with warm water and milk. We then used fruit pastels instead of skittles and talked about our findings.


We carried out an experiment called, ‘dancing raisins’. We added raisins to lemonade and watched them dance.

Afterwards, we changed some variables; we used soda water and still water. We used rice instead of raisins and evaluated what had happened just like real scientists.


Year 1 thoroughly enjoyed dressing up for Science Week!

Nora won the English star award! Everyone was very proud of her achievement.


Spring 1 2024

In maths, Year 1 have been learning about the place value of numbers up to 50. They have learned how to compare and order numbers and how to count in 2s, 5s and 10s.


In history lessons, Year 1 have been learning about toys through time. They spoke to Mrs Barker about her toys and arranged photos of toys on a time line.  Year 1 made wooden spoon dolls using different materials and felt tip pens.


In Science, Year 1 have been investigating different materials and looking at the properties of the material.


Year 1 have also carried out tests to find out which materials were waterproof, absorbent, transparent, opaque and which were the most stretchy.

In English, Year 1 have been learning about traditional tales. They wrote their own traditional tale based on the story of ‘The Three Little Pigs.’

In DT, Year 1 made moving pictures.  They learned how to make a pivot, spring, slide and lift the flap mechanism.


Autumn 2 2023

Sea turtle class have had a very busy half term.

In science we have been learning about the seasons and weather. We went on an Autumn walk and collected signs of Autumn.


We carried out a chromatography experiment to find out how many Autumn colours were hiding inside a green leaf.


We learnt that snow is formed by water vapour in the air freezing before it turns to water. Clouds are cold and crystals are formed around bits of dirt and grow bigger.

We carried out an experiment to see the crystals in ice.

During P.S.H.E, we have been celebrating our differences. We spoke about what was the same and what is different and our likes and dislikes. We also discussed what bullying is and made up some anti-bullying slogans.

In D.T we have been making moving pictures we made a sliding mechanism and a pivot.


In Year 1 we like to play guessing games and ask each other questions.


Autumn 1 2023

During art lessons in Sea Turtle class we have been exploring different media to create firework pictures.  We have been inspired by the work of Dali and Van Gogh.  Our art links with our history lessons because we have been learning all about Guy Fawkes.




Nora’s dad brought in his guitar and taught us all about rhythm during music.

In computing lessons we have been learning to use a mouse with control and a paint programme to create firework pictures.

In maths we have been learning to find our number bonds within 10 systematically. We have been learning to record addition number sentences and use a part/whole model.


In science, we have been learning about animals including humans. We have been learning about carnivores, herbivores and omnivores. We have been classifying animals into groups and identifying the similarities and differences between each group. We were very lucky to have a visit from Safari Stu where we were able to handle and learn about different kinds of animals.


We have been working hard in phonics this term to revise all our sounds from last year and learn some phase 5 sounds and practise writing sentences with our tricky words spelt accurately.


In English lessons Year 1 have been learning to write letters. They have focused on the book, ‘Dear  Green Peace’ by Simon James.They wrote letters detailing an animal they had found in their garden which would not normally live in a garden. They described the animal and included questions about the animal. They then researched the animal finding out facts about its diet and habitat.

The children produced leaflets about how climate change effects the different species living in their world. They discussed how we can improve our local environment.

The children learned how to write their own address and write letters to their new teacher detailing their likes and dislikes. They also included questions for their new teacher to answer.

Year 1 have been learning the time o’clock and half past. They enjoyed challenges to learn how long a minute is, such as how many star jumps they could do and how many times they could write their name. Year 1 have also been learning to count in 2s 5s and 10s and fractions of shape and number including half and quarter.

Year 1 have been learning about the coast and seaside. They have been researching life in rock pools and the differences between cities, villages and the coastal areas.

Year 1 have been tasting and evaluating fruit to make their own fruit salads.  Year 1 have been learning to be TV chefs, in small groups they have filmed themselves making their very own recipe, including smoothies, ice-lollies, crispy cornflake cakes and biscuits.

Year 1 have been talking about the differences between a boy and girl and noticing the changes when developing from a baby to a six year old.  As part of Unique Week, they thought about the different places we come from.

Year 1 watched butterflies develop from a caterpillar and released the beautiful painted lady butterflies into the wild. We also went on a mini beast hunt and carefully observed and drew the mini beasts found before returning them safely back to their habitat.



In English, Year 1 have been reading ‘Supertato’. They have all written their own version of the story changing the characters. They have used adjectives to describe a hero and a villain. The children have also written apology letters pretending to be the evil pea.  Year 1 have also been writing instructions and now we are looking at a variety of nature poems and creating their own poem.



In history, Year 1 have been learning about changes through time.  We have looked at fashion, hairstyles, washing, technology, entertainment, cooking and cleaning.  We went back to our great-grandparents time and compared with modern times.  We painted portraits from photographs and created a collage to show changes in housework and bath time.  We then mapped our collages and portraits on the timeline.


Mrs Monroe visited Year 1 and answered many questions about her life in the village of Wheathampstead when she was their age.  She bought in old toys and books for the children to explore. She also showed her wedding photos.   


Year 1 have enjoyed programming the BeeBots!


In science, Year 1 have been investigating plants and identifying leaves.


 As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, Year 1 made stress balls.



In English, Year 1 have been reading ‘Meerkat Mail’ by Emily Garrett.

This is Sonny our Meerkat.

They have written postcards from places they have visited.  Everyone wrote their own story changing the main character to a different animal and describing the places the animal had visited.


In Year 1, we have also been learning about how to write a non-chronological report.  We researched our own dessert animal using iPads and reference books. We then wrote our own non-chronological report remembering to include all the features.


In geography, we have been learning about Antarctica and how it compares to the Kalahari desert where Sonny the Meerkat lived.  We drew and labelled pictures and spoke about how different animals adapted to their environments.  We also mixed paints to create landscape pictures.


In maths, we have been learning how to count in 2s, 5s and 10s.

In design and technology, Year 1 have been learning how to make free standing structures. They made tepees and learnt that their cone shape helped them to stand up and the structure is supported by straws.  They then made cuboids and prisms from nets to make a house.  Finally, they planned and made their own structures using recycled materials.

In our P.S.H.E lessons, we have been focusing on how we keep ourselves healthy.

In R.E, we have been learning about the Easter story. We created our own Easter garden.


Mrs Barker brought in some old books for the children to look at. They looked at the differences between old and new books. The children were fascinated by the old-fashioned illustrations.  They were also amazed that the Wolf was actually killed at the end of the traditional story of the ‘Three Little Pigs’.  One of the books was so old that it was made out of wood!


The children were very pleased when the Big Bad Wolf was captured and our three little pigs returned. They had written wanted posters and put them up all over the school.

We wrote winter poems in the style of a recipe. The children copied them neatly for display.


In art, Year 1 have been learning about Picasso. They created their own portraits in the style of Picasso.


During PSHE lessons, the children have been thinking about their own dreams and goals. They designed a wellington boot with a partner representing a dream and goal that they both share.

In history, Year 1 have been looking at the history of toys. This was linked to our learning about different materials in science. The children painted old toys using water colours. They sketched them very carefully.  The children made dolls out of wooden spoons. They created their own outfits and chose their materials. The dolls look lovely on display.



In Design Technology, Year 1 have been designing and making a moving winter picture.

First, they practised making each mechanism. They learnt how to make lift the flap, slider mechanism, pivot mechanism and a spring mechanism.

The children designed a moving picture and labelled the two mechanisms they had chosen to make some parts move.

The children enjoyed making their moving pictures creating a lovely display.



Year 1 worked very hard to rehearse and put on their Christmas production, ‘Ralph the Reindeer’.  They drew themselves as their play character.

In P.S.H.E, Year 1 have been thinking about how they are all unique. They enjoyed talking with their peers about their similarities and differences. Year 1 understand that being unique is important so that we all have different things we can learn about each other.

In maths, we have been learning how to tackle subtraction problems.  We used tens frames, number lines, part-whole models and cubes to work out the answers.  Some problems were challenging and made us think.

Year 1 have been learning about owls. They looked at non-fiction books and found out information. They also watched some of a documentary to learn some facts.  Year 1 have been learning to write a factual report about owls.


In geography, Year 1 have been finding out about their local area. They enjoyed using Google Earth to explore the local surroundings and find their house and school.  Year 1 worked collaboratively to create their very own map of Wheathampstead.


Year 1 have been learning about classifying animals in science. They identified features of each group of animal and made a poster about them.


In maths, Year 1 have been introduced to the whole-part model. They have been working out missing parts up to 10. They are now learning to use the + symbol and make addition sentences within 10.

In art, we have been exploring the theme of 'fireworks'.

We have created pictures using lots of different media inspired by Vincent Van Gogh's firework paintings and Salvador Dali's 'Fiesta in figures'.


Year 1 have been learning to create fireworks pictures on a computer programme.