English at Northside is extremely important to all of us and, even though things are slightly different at the moment, we are so excited to be back in the class rooms with the children where we have been exploring new books and beginning new topics!
After such a long time away from school, it can seem a little daunting to return to lessons. But, as always, our children have shown nothing but determination and resilience in returning to school. We will be spending time recapping and revising content from previous year groups before moving on to the objectives that the children are expected to meet for their age, when they are ready. So, please rest assured that we are making sure our lessons are appropriate for the children and not just the age related expectation as we are aware of the amount of catch up time that may be needed.
English lessons at Northside are still as exciting as ever! We have all started our new topics off with the launch of our Terrific Texts for the half-term which are carefully chosen by our teachers and closely linked to our class topics. The books we are reading in class are listed below:
Oxford and Cambridge University 'Owl Babies'
University of Nottingham 'Owl Babies'
Durham University- ‘Rosie’s Walk’
University of York -‘Super Me!’ and ‘Eliot, Midnight Superhero’
Queen’s University, Belfast-‘Ug’
Cardiff University- ‘Cosmic’
University of Edinburgh-‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’
University of Bristol ‘Goodnight Mister Tom’
The children are fully engaged with the appropriately challenging and high quality books that we are all sharing in class. These texts are explored in English lessons where they are used to stimulate imagination and provide the children with excellent models. They are also read to the children during dedicated story time that we all have at the end of each school day.
Every day at 1pm, children and adults are given DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) time. Across the school, the only thing that can be heard at this time is the eager turning of pages and the sigh of disappointment when their 15-30 minutes reading time is over! During this time, children are often seen reading their chosen Reading Road Map books which are proving to be very popular amongst the children.
Reading Road Map
You may have read in last week’s newsletter that we have received our delivery of Reading Road Map books. All of the children, and staff, are extremely excited about starting their new reading journeys with these beautiful books. In Year 6, the adults have chosen a book from the new selection to read during DEAR time and we are already really impressed with the quality of the texts and how the children are treating the new books with such excitement and respect. We look forward to starting to hand out certificates when the children have reached their first 5 books, soon!
At the beginning of the term (and then the end of each half term, from now on) our Northside Novelist competition started. As we are unable to deliver an assembly, each class watched the ‘Scarlett’ video clip. The whole school then had the opportunity to rewrite the story in any way they wanted to. Our Northside Novelist’s stories were then shared across the school during our daily story time. The next Northside Novelist competition is planned in for the last week of term so keep an eye on the class pages to see who wins!
Bored of reading the same genre? Ready to expand your minds and enter new worlds of adventure? If so, we have a new Reading Bingo for the children to complete and they are available on your child’s class page. These provide the children with ideas to read different types of texts, in different places and for different reasons. Why not give it a go? Maybe you could even print one for yourselves and see how many you can complete. House Points are available for the children and there will be prizes for those who complete the grids.
Library Visits-In school
We are so lucky at Northside, to have a beautiful, well-stocked and wonderfully maintained library. We are able to open its doors once more and the children have all had slots to go and visit over the last couple of weeks. We are encouraging the children to take two books out, at a time, as they will only be able to visit every three weeks due to us needing to leave three days in between class visits and to allow for it to be cleaned.
I hope you have all had a look at your new homework grids and that you choose some of the fantastic writing tasks that the teachers have set. So, we look forward to seeing all of your beautiful writing being posted on the blog in the weeks to come.
Each class will be focusing on discovering, exploring and using new vocabulary and we all have Word Walls to help the children remember them! We also all have a display showing a piece of writing at the age-related expectation for our year groups, in our classes so all of the children can see what their writing needs to include. Our Writing Top Tens are on the class pages and we are working on creating the same for reading-watch this space!