Ducklings Class


Teacher: Miss Fox

Teaching Assistants: Mrs Cheeseborough and Mrs Dibden


Please click for the Ducklings Curriculum: Ducklings curriculum letter spring 2020

Phonics Stay and Play   / Learning to Read and Write


As children grow older, they begin to understand more about the sounds of our language. This is an important stage as the children’s ears are tuning in to all the different sounds around them. Playing with sounds and tuning your child’s ears into sounds will develop their ability to hear different sounds which links to reading and writing.

Ways to support your child at home:

  • Help your child move to the rhythm of a song or rhyme
  • Try breaking down simple words when you are giving instructions or asking questions e.g. ‘Where is the c-a-t cat?’
  • Alliteration is a lot of fun to play around with. Your child’s name can be a good place to start, for example, say: ‘Jolly Jessie jumped’.
  • Make up nonsense stories together using lots of alliteration

Following on from this is oral blending and segmenting and linking the sounds that can be heard to letters.

In Reception we follow a phonics teaching programme called ‘Letters and Sounds’. It builds on the activities the children have already experienced in their pre-school setting and prepares them for early reading and writing.

Whilst learning sounds, children are encouraged to hear initial sounds in words. They will then progress to hearing more sounds in words, blending and segmenting sounds, which is an important skill for reading and writing.

Blending is a skill for reading. The separate sounds (phonemes) of the word are spoken aloud, in order, all through the word, and are then merged together into the whole word. We use ‘sound buttons’ under each letter which are ‘pressed’ as each letter is spoken and then swiped across to merge the sounds. For example the adult would say c-a-t = cat.

Segmenting is a skill for spelling. The whole word is spoken aloud, and then broken up into its separate sounds (phonemes) in order, all through the word. For example, the adult would say cat = c-a-t.

Once children become confident hearing these sounds they start to use magnetic letters or letter cards to link the sounds to letters and build up words (segmenting) or read simple words (blending).

To aid this, we use words that are spelt phonetically such as ‘cat’, ‘dog’ and ‘map’. We also teach ‘wizzy words’. These need to be learnt on sight as they often cannot be sounded out or are used frequently in books e.g. no, the, and. We have attached a sheet of these ‘high frequency words’.

Ways to support your child at home


  • Read every day to and with your child
  • Collect a variety of pens and pencils and keep them handy to use
  • Bring stories to life using different voices
  • Let your child read what they would like – books, comics, catalogues
  • Leave books around the house for your child to dip into
  • Make flash cards


  • Make up words together using magnetic letters/fridge magnets
  • Make up a story about one of their favourite toys. You write for them, repeating the sentences as you write. When it is complete, they can draw pictures to go with it.
  • Look at writing when you are out and about – try and read any of the words or identify any of the letters.
  • Talk about the letters they have been learning this week

 If your child is reluctant to read or write it is important not to worry; the important thing is to keep on sharing books and talking together. They will often choose to write when they have no real reason to.

We hope that you have found some of these ideas useful and feel confident to try some out!

Useful websites:

Interactive games:

National Bookstart Scheme:

This website provides information about the national bookstart scheme and information about sharing books with your child. 

Speaking and Listening Skills:

This website provides information for parents and teachers on the importance of speaking and listening skills for young children’s development. Although it is aimed at early communication development, there is lots of useful information and material. 


Welcome to Ducklings Class


Spring 2020



Fire Service-3

Ducklings were pleased to welcome Jon Sweet from the Dorset and Wiltshire Fire Service into our classroom as he led us through a very informative workshop about fire safety. We learned what to do if the fire bell goes off at school, what to do if the smoke alarm goes off at home and what number to call if we ever see a fire!
We also learned the different jobs that firefighters do besides putting out fires, and found out lots about candle, match and lighter safety. The children listened to lots of different rhymes to remember how to stay safe around fire and also learned how to stop, drop and roll under a sheet of pretend smoke.
A big thank you to Jon and the Fire Service for planning such a lovely, informative lesson! We all really enjoyed it!


Winter 2019

We have had an interesting half term in Ducklings and have all learned lots of new skills. We started by learning about Fireworks Night and Guy Fawkes when learning about ‘Light and Dark’ and spent time making different firework pictures and writing about the noises fireworks make! We also learned lots about fire safety and now know how to keep ourselves safe around a bonfire and when using sparklers. We even acted out our fire safety knowledge in our role play fire station!

We also learned lots about the story of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ this half term. We learned lots of new story language and got to know this story so well that we could retell it without looking at the pictures! The children also enjoyed acting the story out independently in the role play ‘Goldilocks’ house. We have been measuring and weighing porridge using scales. We also designed and made our own porridge inspired by the story of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, tasting it and evaluating it! We have also been practising reading numbers and counting sets of objects and pictures reliably. We have also started to add small sets of objects together, counting everything in the set to find the answers. Some of us have started to record our maths learning, and we have been working hard to learn the names of more 3D shapes as well.

During our London Curriculum Day, we loved learning more about the Royal Family! We looked at pictures of Queen Elizabeth and learned more about her family. Everyone enjoyed finding out more about where the Queen lived, looking at her lovely outfits throughout the years and examining pictures of the Crown Jewels! We then designed and made our own crowns and enjoyed measuring each other’s heads and wearing them around the classroom.

We have all enjoyed learning more about Advent wreaths in R.E. and we have been busy getting ready for Christmas and the birth of Jesus! We have made our own wreaths using cutting and sticking equipment, completed sticker scenes that show the scene of Jesus’s birth and designing and making our own Christmas cards for our friends and families. We have also all been practising singing a range of Christmas songs and loved performing as angels in the Christmas play for all of our friends and families!

We are all now very ready for a lovely Christmas holiday after a busy half term filled with lots of hard work, happiness and fun! Merry Christmas everyone!

Autumn 2019


What a busy start to the Autumn term we have had in Ducklings! We started by learning about ‘Ourselves and Our Families’ and enjoyed talking about our families, drawing pictures of our families and reading books about different families. We also acted out different family games in the role play house. We enjoyed making new friends and learning all of their names, and telling them about ourselves.

In Literacy we have covered a range of key texts including ‘The Enormous Turnip’, ‘The Gruffalo’ by Julia Donaldson, ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen and ‘Peace at Last’ by Jill Murphy. We have been retelling and sequencing the events in these stories and have used pictures, props, puppets and actions to help us. We also learned lots of new story language and everyone especially enjoyed matching sounds from musical instruments to the different noises in ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt!’ We have also been working hard in phonics lessons to learn a range of new letter sounds and we have been practising blending these sounds in words. We have also all been learning to write our names.

In R.E. lessons we have been learning all about creation and have spent time learning the story of how God created the world and what he made on different days. We also liked looking around the locality of our school to try to spot the best things that God created. We have also started our learning into Prayers, Saints and Feasts and have talked about different families and how the people we love care for us, comparing them to the people in Jesus’s family.

In Maths lessons we have been learning to count forwards and backwards and to recognise numerals reliably. We have been working hard to match the correct amount of objects to numerals, and to order numerals correctly. Some of us have also started to add objects together and count them all to find the total. We have also been working hard to recognise and continue a range of repeating patterns, and to name and use shapes in pictures, patterns and when building.

Everyone has worked so hard this half term to make new friends, follow the rules and to settle nicely into school life. Well done to all our new Ducklings – we are all well and truly ready for a week’s rest now!