Greetings as we move quickly through Term 2… it’s Week 3 already! We are seeing some amazing results with the Jolly Phonics and Daily 5 Reading Literacy Programs.

Phonics

Phonics is focussed on ‘alternative sounds’, ‘blending words’ and ‘vowels’ to expand vocabulary. Thank you to all parents for your ongoing daily practice with ‘Word Box’ words…this is vitally important to the children’s growth in literacy development.  Daily literature lessons are fun as we learn about rhyming, story characters, dramatisations, punctuation and reading conventions, using various nursery rhymes. I have also seen a marked improvement in handwriting skills as the children work on their writing posture, continue to hold a ‘little paper ball’ and practise their ‘froggy legs’ each time they write to strengthen the ‘fine motor’ muscles in their hands.  Oral language skills are improving, with confidence to speak in front of the group and to ask for questions or comments. I’m sure these children will become great public speakers in the future!

Targeting Maths

Targeting Maths lessons have included more on number, addition, place value and measurement, building on skills and learning as the children practise hands-on activities, strengthen their bookwork skills and work collaboratively together in pairs and small groups.  Topics remain difficult for some, although most are growing in their knowledge of ‘number’ and ‘operations’ of simple addition and subtraction.  I find that ‘problem solving’ and ‘understanding what the questions are asking’ remains difficult. Each day we practise a daily warm up, to get our ‘Math’s brains’ working.  We then spend time discussing the ‘Math’s vocabulary’ for each new topic covered, before practising hands-on examples of the concept. This is followed by a short ‘written’ example and if time permits the children then consolidate their learning using various forms of technology and partner or small group work with more hands-on. Maths is a subject that needs lots of ‘doing’ at this early age.  I find the children love to tackle number puzzles, matching objects to number cards, calling out flash card numbers.  Technology is in the form of a Targeting Maths App on their iPad or the Rainforest Maths program on school computers which are both targeted at each weekly topic and age/stage level.

Annette Blackett