Ducklings Class


Teacher: Miss Fox

Teaching Assistants: Mrs Cheeseborough and Mrs Dibden


Please click for the Ducklings Curriculum: Ducklings curriculum letter autumn 2019

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


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!