Well done Beech class for an excellent return to school following our half-term break!

We are already enjoying our topic on Celebrations around the World.

We have had some fun with the Funnybones stories and have made up new adventures for the Funnybones family as a part of celebrating Halloween. We have also found out about the Day of the Dead celebration which happens in Mexico.

Bjork’s ‘Its All So Quiet’ has been an effective piece of music to inspire sequences of movement representing fireworks. We all know how to keep safe with fireworks and we have enjoyed making posters to remind everyone how to stay safe. We have found out about Guy Fawkes and where the Houses of Parliament still are.

Everyone has made a sea of poppies painting which forms part of a larger picture on display in church. We have discussed our ideas about why there are poppies and about what we shall be remembering on 11th November. There have been some thoughtful and moving things said which give hope for the future.

This week we have listened to the story of Rama and Sita. We have retold the story in books shaped like palaces. Tomorrow we shall be finding out more about the festival of Divali: what happens, what is similar to other festivals and what is different. Today we have learned about some of the traditional dances linked with Divali. We have had a go at dancing and playing bells at the same time! It sounded beautiful!

In maths our topic is ‘time’ This includes knowing the days of the week, the months of the year, different times of day and telling the time. Everyone agrees it is important to know about ‘time’ so please do talk about ‘time’ at home. We were very surprised how long one minute seemed this morning when we closed our eyes and tried to estimate when one minute would have passed. Next week we shall have a focus on 2d and 3d shape.

Thank-you for your kind words with regard to my retirement at Christmas. I have talked with the children about what is happening. I have explained to them, truthfully, that because they are all doing so well in their learning as a class, it is a good time for me to retire. I would not feel able to step back if this was not the case. I first started teaching in 1980 and friends keep suggesting to me that it may be time to start exploring the big wide world out there! Now it does feel the right time to do this. The children will continue to work with Miss Carter, Claire, Lana and Mrs Wiseman -as well as welcoming a new teacher in the new year. I have no doubt they will thrive.The children are amazing to work with and I cannot begin to explain how much I shall miss them. I hope they know this. They have invited me to come and live in Chagford instead!

With best wishes,

Catherine Thomas