Happy New Year to you all! We are delighted to be back at LJS after a restful Christmas break. We had great excitement in Tuesday morning when we arrived in our classrooms to find that the old grey carpets have been replaced with new blue ones and that we have brand new tables and chairs too! The tables tops are a light grey colour and the chairs are a smart purple colour – we love them! We think that the new chairs are much more comfortable and we all like the shapes of the tables too – rectangles and semi-circles. We asked if Father Christmas had delivered them on Christmas Eve but Mrs W explained that he would have been far too busy so they had been delivered the week before!
Our new topic is Kenya. We will be making comparisons between Kenya and England as we learn. On Tuesday we received a takeaway menu full of ‘Unhomework’ ideas. We were very excited to see all of the different tasks. We can complete each one in any way we wish. Mrs W and Mrs H told us that last year’s Unhomework included video clips, audio recordings, collages, booklets, posters, Prezi presentations, cooking, pictures, fact cards and even Minecraft! Our teachers can’t wait to see our Unhomework start to come in.
On Thursday we were a bit confused when we retuned from morning break and were given boarding passes! 2W had been transformed into an aeroplane with the classroom chairs being set out like an aircraft cabin. We sat down quietly and fastened our imaginary seat belts before watching a flight safety brief. We then took off from Heathrow and landed only minutes later in Nairobi, Kenya! The eight hour flight seemed to go by in a flash… Once ‘there’ we found out some information about the location of Kenya and the continent of Africa. We also discovered a little bit about the food and schools. The school room that we saw looked very different to our bright, colourful classroom. We noticed that Heathrow looked very different to Nairobi airport. There were lots of small aeroplanes at Nairobi airport and some were even on the grass – they were much bigger at Heathrow! Once we had found out some information we ‘flew’ back to Oundle in time for lunch!
On Friday morning, it happened! ‘It’ being SNOW! There was a definite air of excitement around the school and we have never put our coats on more quickly than when we were told that we could go outside in it! It’s a good job we went out before 9am – just as the weather forecasters had predicted, it had all gone by 10am!
J from 2W brought in a tasty treat this morning in the form of Kenyan donuts.
They looked delicious and the smell was wonderful! We all tried one and they were just as delicious as they looked! Thank you, J!
Year Two’s Kenyan ‘Unhomework’ continues to delight us! We commented last time that we were wondering what would come in next… Well, over the weekend we were amazed to see ‘Dessert number 1’ being completed in a brilliantly imaginative and unique way – it has been created using Minecraft! M from 2H has used his Minecraft skills to produce this wonderful depiction of the Kenyan flag. Not only that but he has been busy making Kenyan chapatis – and eating them of course!
Also emailed over the weekend was another ‘Safari in a Shoebox’ which used a younger sibling’s toy animals.
More wordsearches, a map and a selection of ‘starters’ and ‘desserts’ have also been sent in this morning – Year 2 have obviously been busy over the weekend… Later on we shall be trying some Kenyan donuts which have been made by J in 2W. We shall report back later with photographic proof and our verdicts!
Last week Year Two’s new takeaway ‘unhomework’ menu was launched. The children were very excited to receive their menu. It includes many different choices – starters, main courses and desserts. The ‘unhomework’ tasks can be completed in any way you like! So far we have got loads of different and exciting projects on display and there are lots more to come!
As you can see, we have been very busy and are enjoying being able to choose what we are learning and how we are presenting our learning. We have jewellery, a Maasai mud hut, word searches, a LEGO model of a National Park designed by the builder, some Kenyan flags, some African drums, information about the big five and a map; not to mention several ‘safaris in a shoebox’! Mrs H, Mrs W, Mrs L and Mrs B are wondering what will come in next…
This morning Year Two were excited and surprised when they returned from break to be given boarding passes…to Nairobi in Kenya! Having found our seats aboard the classroom aircraft we then viewed the LJS airways safety briefing. We watched in amazement as we took off from Heathrow; white board technology had allowed us to view this on screen from the cockpit. The 8 1/2 hour flight passed in a flash and in no time at all we were landing with a wonderful view of Nairobi!
We wanted to find out about Kenya but first shared our existing knowledge. Then we discussed what we would like to find out next. Mrs W and Mrs H were most impressed by the ideas and questions posed.
Having written down our questions we settled in for more discussion based around a presentation relating to the location of Kenya. We found it most interesting to compare Kenya with England and are looking forward to finding out more as the weeks go on.
Our time in Kenya was over all too quickly and before we knew it, we were landing back at Heathrow.
What a treat we have had this afternoon in Year 2. As part of our Kenya topic, we were delighted that Mr Matthews found half an hour in his busy timetable to run an African drumming workshop. We all got to have a go with an African drum, actually called a djembe. Mr Matthews tapped out simple beat and we had to answer him with a specific rhythm. Some of us found it easier than others but we all really enjoyed ourselves. We noticed that the decoration on some of the drums was very colourful. Thank you, Mr Matthews!
What a way to spend a Wednesday! Year 2 had a wonderful time at the zoo this week. We were very lucky to start our day with an educational talk which wowed the children. First our senses were tricked by the marvels of camouflage and how it operates in our environment. The children were amazed by just how many stick insects can hide themselves in one very small area! We also had the pleasure of meeting Ebenezer who was a lovely friendly snake. She was happy to meet and greet and children and we took full advantage of the opportunity to say hello. We then spent some time touching, feeling and discussing a variety of exhibits. I have to say, the staff were most impressed with the insight and knowledge shown by the children. After lunch we explored the zoo on our own steam. Our Kenya topic was brought to life by the many African animals we saw. The Giraffes evoked the most ooohs and aahs and the very sweet baby hippo looked very content tucked in next to his mum.
Year Two have loved learning about Africa and, in particular, Kenya. Our sunset pictures look pretty spectacular on display on the corridor and have now been joined by our African tribal face paint designs.
First we found out about face painting in tribes and what it means. We then created our own designs on paper face outlines before transferring our designs onto masks. We were able to use paint or felt tip pen on the masks and really enjoyed the process. We hope you like them!
We have been inspired by the African sunset prints in our classroom and have loved creating our own versions of a Kenyan landscape at sunset. We started by painting the background with a wash of graduated colours; we started with a thin mixture of yellow paint and then gradually added red paint, using each new shade on our paper. We then used black paper to make silhouettes of trees (baobab and acacia), animals and grass to stick onto the background. The effect is quite stunning and we love seeing our work on display in the corridor, although we were a little sad to see the Great Fire of London display come down!