Years 1 & 2
Year 1 is a transition year, taking the children from play-based learning towards a more formal approach as they prepare for Year 2.
In the Autumn term we have a history focus beginning to understand the concept of timelines and events in living memory. We do this through a topic around toys which also dovetails with our science work on materials.
In the Spring term we have a geography focus, learning about the polar regions and the contrast of the equator. Our science focus is on living things and the beginnings of habitats.
In the Summer term we focus in more detail on habitats, investigating creatures and plants in our local environment.
Art, DT and Music are linked to our topics and are a crucial way of children exploring and expressing their creativity and individuality.
Throughout the year we learn about the seasons and seasonal change. We go on regular trips to Greenwich Park and our local area to experience the changes in seasons, weather and plants.
Phonics is a key component of learning in Year 1. We follow the Letters & Sounds programme. We build upon the phonics that has been taught in Reception, consolidating the initial sounds and then moving on to digraphs and trigraphs. We have daily phonics lessons where the children are taught to segment and blend in order to read and spell independently.
Reading has the potential to really take off in Year 1. We set online reading books according to the child’s phonetic stage, introducing the basics of comprehension as well as reading for enjoyment. The expectation is to read every day with the parent/carer. Every week the children also choose picture books with rich vocabulary and an array of genres to share with parents at home.
Writing develops alongside reading. Once children are able to build simple words and know some tricky words, we encourage them to write sentences with correct use of capital letters, finger spaces and full stops. As they grow in confidence, they are encouraged to add adjectives and extend their writing with some connectives (conjunctions). We give a lot of attention to correct letter formation, using the Ruth Miskin rhymes.
As a school, we follow the White Rose Maths programme building on the core elements of number, shape and measure. Maths is very practical. We use a variety of resources but a key one is Numicon. Place value is a significant aspect of Maths. We begin with numbers up to 10, securing the understanding of addition and subtraction including number bonds and fact families. We then progress to numbers up to 20, so that children fully grasp teens numbers. Later in the year, when children are ready, we progress to 50 and then 100.
In RE, we learn about Judaism throughout the year, focusing on the main celebrations of Shabbat, Hanukkah and Purim. We also learn about Noah’s Ark, Saints and Baptism in addition to the Christian festivals of Christmas and Easter.
In PSHE, the school follows the Christopher Winters programmes for Sex and Relationships Education and Drug and Alcohol Education. The focus is on friendships, lifecycles from baby to elderly and how to look after ourselves.
Year 2 builds upon and extends the learning in Reception and Year 1.
Lessons now take on a more ‘formal’ style using a mixture of teacher led lessons, pair or group work and independent tasks.
Over the course of the year we study six topics, each based on a picture book. Each topic covers English as well as one of History, Geography or Science. This allows children to appreciate the strong bonds that exist between these subjects.
The History topics, which include ‘Rosa Parks’ and the Victorian Era focus on developing children’s understanding of chronology as well as providing opportunities to explore and investigate the past and communicate their findings.
The Geography topic focusses on the country of Kenya, in particular drawing comparisons between life in Kenya and Life in the UK. We also complete a study of London and our local area, including both physical and human features of these places.
The Science topics focus on living things and their habitats, plants and materials. These are all taught in a practical, hands on way which allows children to make and answer their own questions.
These topics will all include elements of Art, DT and Music. These subjects are a crucial way of children exploring and expressing their creativity and individuality.
Alongside our learning in English we also continue the phonics learning from Year 1. We follow the Letters & Sounds programme which at Year 2 focusses on consolidating the sounds learnt in Year 1, then using this to develop greater fluency in their reading and improve the accuracy of their spelling.
Reading continues to be a key area of learning in Year 2. We set online reading books, selected to help children progress to more advanced books, including different genres. We continue to develop children’s comprehension skills, including a range of retrieval, inference, summary and evaluative questions. We ask parents/carers to read with their children using this online resource daily. Children will also be encouraged to choose books to take home, to promote reading for pleasure.
Writing develops alongside reading. In Year 2 we start to introduce writing in different genres, including narratives, letters, postcards, recounts, fact files and others. We continue to work on building more complicated sentences, including using a range of word types, such as adding adjectives and pronouns to make writing more interesting. We continue to work on children’s handwriting skills including introducing a cursive handwriting style, which builds upon the precursive style used in year 1.
Maths follows the White Rose Maths programme. This builds upon Year 1 strands of number, shape and measure. Children will practice counting in 2s, 10s, 5s and 3s, which will then be used to start learning the associated times tables. These will be practiced regularly so that children become increasingly fluent. Our learning in maths is supported by the use of a wide range of practical resources including counters, place value charts, base-10 blocks, Numicon and more.
Computing covers a range of issues related to E-safety and staying safe whilst using technology. We then explore different ways of using technology to achieve various goals and start to get to grips with simple coding.
In RE, we learn about the Christian festivals of Christmas and Easter, as well as the Lord’s Prayer, Saints and God’s Rules for living. We also introduce Sikhism, including the core beliefs of Sikhism and what is means to be a Sikh.
In PSHE, the school follows the Christopher Winters programmes for Sex and Relationships Education and Drug and Alcohol Education. The focus is on friendships, growing up, looking after ourselves and staying safe.
Year 2 Curriculum