Otterbourne Church of England
Primary School

With God's love, all are encouraged to thrive

Year R Blog



What a busy two weeks... The children have enjoyed making their families using the resources from our Let's Explore area. They talked about sizes of each family member and where they were positioned in their families. The handprints generated a lot of talk about size - especially the BIG ones!

We've enjoyed being outside and making the most of the mild autumn weather. We've been learning about harvest around the world and particularly the Jewish festival of Sukkot. The children made a Sukkah shelter outside, putting branches on the roof. This is so you can still see the stars and God provide protection for the people inside. We decorated the Sukkah with paper chains and Conker strings and then ate our snacks in there. 

There have been a lot of slugs and worms to find in the mud kitchen and the children have carefully placed them in the bug hotel.

We had a visit from some Y2 children who came to read us their stories. It was nice to listen to them and to see some big brothers and sisters. 

Funky Fingers has been a hit with sock pegging, pipe cleaner poking and Conker threading. All of these tasks are good for fine motor control.

Our curiosity box has had some super interesting things.. it started with a deer skull, then a birds nest and this week some decaying sunflowers. The children have used magnifying glasses to look carefully at each item.

In the afternoons we have started our Numicon Maths sessions. Our first challenge was to fill the base board. This involved lots of talk about what shape was needed , what number and negotiating with others about which they needed.

We began class collective worship by looking at three versions of the bible. The children chose which one to read first - it was the rhyming one. We discussed how each bible tells the same stories but in a different way. We've started with the Creation. 

We began our Bug Club phonics this week and the children are picking up the first four sounds (s, a, t, p). We had two Early Years advisory teachers in school on Wednesday morning who could not believe how focussed and engaged the children were :-)

Cafe play is a HUGE hit with children creating "delicious" dishes out of loose parts (wood discs, sea glass, stones, curtain rings...) The cheeseburger is excellent - see if you can spot it in the slideshow!


15.9.23 Forest School

Yay - we've got 30 pairs of named wellies :-)

The children put their shoes in their lockers, put wellies on and lined up at the gate. That was hurdle number 1...

We spent ten minutes exploring the field but the children learnt to return to Me when they heard the whistle. WOWZER! they were brilliant and soon ready for the woods. We sat in the circle and were going to be still and quiet, listening to the sounds of nature BUT instead we were drowned out by the sound of the tractor mowing the meadow for our entire session! 

We talked about being safe and learnt the 3 rules of Forest School "Don't pick, don't lick and be sensible with a stick". We also looked at trip hazards, stinging plants and boundaries to keep safe. 

We sang a song about prickly hedgehogs, looked for squirrel food, dug little holes and buried our acorns.

Lots of handwashing on our return :-)


What an outstanding week we have had! The children have been utterly amazing and we are incredibly proud of how they've settled and picked up so many new routines. Even tidy up time has improved (for most children :-))!

The children were definitely flagging this afternoon as were the grown ups. We all deserve two days off!


15.9.23 We're Going on a Sibling Hunt....

The children loved having a photo taken with their big brothers and sisters. 


12.9.23 Day 2 

Another fantastic start to the day. The children quickly settled in the hall and then lined up with all of their belongings and walked to the classroom, put stuff in their lockers (with virtually no help) and deposited water bottles on the window sill. After register we had a story (that they voted for yesterday) and went off to Challenge Time with a few reminders about respecting resources and using TWO pumps of paint not 100!

We saw a few siblings who have been desperate to pop in and say hello, but from tomorrow this will be discouraged to keep our children settled. 

The home corner turned into a cafe and we were treated to some delicious cakes, spaghetti bolognaise and tomato soup. Outside bikes and scooters are proving very popular so the sand timer was introduced and this showed the children when their turn was up and that it was time to give someone else a go. 

It was hard to believe that today was only the second lunchtime as the children followed all the correct lunch routines. Our Year 6 Buddy rota started today and it was wonderful seeing the children supporting and playing together.


11.9.23 Our first day at school!

The children came in so well and sat in the hall with Mrs Bertacchini and Mrs Johnson. After they had chosen lunch the children were itching to play outside so off they went. We talked about a few rules to keep safe and to respect our resources. The children were very good.

Inside our lovely, tidy classroom soon became the working environment it was destined to be. After lunch we discussed the "two pump" rule of the paint dispensers after a morning of colour mixing sludge!! 

Lunchtime was amazing. The children were helped a little bit with sausage cutting but other than they they were very independent putting their cutlery in the right place and clearing up at the end.

It's two o'clock so we haven't tackled tidy up time this space :-)



More work needed on this and that's all I can say......



We have been busy over the summer moving to the new classroom. It is all set up and ready for Monday morning....will it ever look this tidy again?