Sunday, 31 March 2013


I'm going to attempt to quickly link up with Mrs Reed over at Flying Into First.
The theme for this week is survey or favourites.
Favourite Shop
I love shopping but have a hard time parting with my money. For this reason some of my favourite shops are Primark and H&M. The only thing I hate about H&M is that their sizes are super small!! At Primark you can buy a whole outift with for £20.

Favourite TV Show

This is actually quite hard because I watch a lot of TV. One show I love watching with my man though is New Girl. Zoey Deschanel is so damn cute and quirky!!

I do also religiously watch Hollyoaks, which is a really bad English soap opera, probably aimed at teenagers.

Favourite Sweet Treat
I eat a lot. Like all the time. Sugar being one of my addictions. I am currently obsessed with eating pink wafers. It's very random, as people have told me, because it's like eating sweet cardboard, but I think it's the crunchiness I love. I can also easily polish off a whole bag of Haribos, specifically Maoms. Yum!

Favourite Team

Now I know this was not one of the categories, but I know that I mentioned food in one of my previous posts. I also wanted to 'represent' for my great/small city of Norwich. My favourite football (soccer) team is Norwich City Football Club. A team that has the very intimidating mascot of ... a yellow canary.
I think I'll stop now before I get carried away. Thanks for stopping by!


Spring Term...A Reflection

I have been wanting to blog for the last  two weeks or so, but have been busy, lacking any good ideas, and/or completely forgetting what I wanted to discuss. Upon looking through my pictures on my camera, I realised what an awesome term we have had. The photos on my camera are a small snapshot of the amazing activities that have been planned by my coworkers and school. I thought I'd share some of these snippets.
Egypt Day
Our students had been learning about Ancient Egypt during history lessons since September. The culmination of this unit was Egypt Day. Our school hires in someone to put on a whole Egypt themed day for our Year 3 students. The students come in fancy dress, some as pharoahs, some as Egyptologists, some as ??. It is a great day for the students because not only do they learn more information about Egypt, but can apply the information they have been learning about. The day starts with a brief history lesson. The classes are then given 3 different tasks to rotate around. Task 1 is another talk by Mark, our Egyptologist for the day. He shows students his Egyptian artefacts and lets them try and figure out what they may have been used for. Task 2 is an Ancient Egyptian game called Jackels and Hounds. Very basic dice throwing, moving around the board game. Task 3 is an Egyptian quiz. They are given a sheet with questions linking to specific boards. Each board takes one aspect of Egyptian life. The children really enjoyed this because there were lots of gross and random facts for them to learn about.
In the afternoon all the Year 3 students are brought back into the hall to perform an Egyptian burial.They pull the organs out of the 'human' and wrap it up. Then students are assigned roles, such as pharaoh, priestess, priest and walk around the hall performing a funeral procession. Such a great day!
Left: Playing Jackals and Hounds, Middle/Right: Taking part in the Egyptian quiz

Had to add this photo. I think he was an archeaologist. Anyways, he's just plain amazing in this outfit!

Science Day:
We are very lucky to have a university in our city. The science department was offering an outreach programme to get students interested and thinking about careers in Science. We had professors, professionals (physiotherapists, etc), and science undergrads come in and conduct a whole day of science for the whole school. One of the activities our year chose had to do with visual impairments. The students were shown a powerpoint of the different types of impairments people can have. They were then given different types of glasses to wear and then asked to fill in a crossword and complete a wordsearch. The range of impairments ranged were so fascinating, I didn't even know some of them exisisted. Students were also given the opportunity to wear the glasses and walk down the corridor with a friend.
Students modelling their different glasses, representing different types and degrees of visual impairment.

Some students having a real giggle trying to navigate the corridor in their special glasses.

Theatre Trip:
If you've read any of my previous posts, you will remember that my school was working on a James and the Giant Peach theme in the fall. We revisted this theme a couple of weeks back because the theatre in our city had a performance of James and the Giant Peach. Our headteacher, who is actually the head for two schools, bought tickets for every single child and adult in both schools! That was over 400 tickets. Needless to say we took up lots of room in the theatre. The children were also treated to icecream at the intermission!
The theatre group, Birmingham Stage Company, put on such a unique take of the show. There were only 8-10 actors who played a variety of parts.
Birmingham Stage Company

Red Nose Day:
This is a bi-annual event that occurs across the UK. It is amazing because it is a huge fundraising event that everyone gets involved in. As a teacher it is also a great time to teach about different living situations of people and have students reflect on their own lives.
Red Nose Day also is an event that celebrities get involved in. On telly they have a great show culminating in skits and sketches from famous people, such as David Beckham. Schools get involved by raising money. We had a fancy dress day and where students dressed up as superheroes. Loved it! They pay 50p to not wear their uniform. Fun day!

My absolute favourite picture of my class. Hate that I have to blur out their little faces. Love my student who dressed up as 'Where's Waldo (Wally in the UK)', he said he needed to hide in the back.

History Walk:
If you're still reading, well done. Last thing I wanted to mention was our history walk around the school's neighbourhood. In the spring term students learned about the history of their neighbourhood. It's so fascinating to look at old maps and find the buildings that are still around, as well as how things have changed. One interesting fact I learned is that Anna Sewell, author of Black Beauty, had a house in our area, which is still standing.
Students in front of the 'old school', another school in our area. It was built in the 19th century. Students were able to point out the old features of the building. It was built for the workers children of the large estate.
Well that wraps it up! It has been great to go through to photos and think of how much we have done in the last 11 weeks. What interesting things have you been up to?


Monday, 25 March 2013

Let's Get Acquainted Linky, Noun version

Today I'm linking up with Mrs. Reed over at Flying Into First. I'm loving these get to know you linky parties as I'm discovering lots of new blogs, which equals more inspiration for my teaching practice.

The theme for this week is nouns.
Favourite person would be Daniel. He's been my partner, fiancee, boyfriend, whatever you like to call it for over 5 years. Anyone who can stick with me that long deserves a medal. Now with the impending wedding we're stuck with each other forever :)

Photo courtesey of Ross Harvey
Now I have many a place that I love and would consider my favourite. Love being a lazy so my house could be considered my fave place. I also have a special place in my heart for Santa Barbara and UCSB. I mean who wouldn't have loved going to university here:

 But the place that will forver hold a very special place in my heart is Cape Town, South Africa. One of the most beautiful cities I had ever been to and the place where I met Daniel.

The top of Table Mountain. It took us over 2 hours to get to the top. I had only met Daniel and Pete a few days earlier.
This is a random one. I don't think there is something I can't live without. I do love my slow cooker and TV though. The slow cooker has been a godsend since I got it for my birthday in Jan. So nice to come home to a cooked meal.

I love penguins.

Until next week...

Monday, 11 March 2013

Let's Get Acquainted

Found this great linky from Flying into First Grade. I have really enjoyed linking up with other blogs and it's a  great way to find new blogs and  let people know about mine.

The topic for Mrs Reed's first-ever-linky is to share 3 things about yourself that you like or like to do using your initials. So here it goes
B is for burritos. Something I <3 to eat and miss terribly living here in England. Gone are the days of stopping off anywhere within a mile radius to get my burrito fix.

C is for cooking. Something I am really terrible at. Okay, not terrible but not great. All my food comes out slightly not perfect. Luckily my fiancee still eats it. 

Q, man this is a hard one. Erm ... quizzes. I do love a good pub quiz, although my team never comes first. I also love me some quiz shows - while in the US it's Jeopardy in the UK I love Pointless.


Love that nothing on my section has to do with teaching but two things have to do with food :) 

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Disgusting Recipes

This week my English set created some disgusting recipes to help them understand both instruction writing and verbs. I took this idea off my fellow Year 3 teachers, who did this project more in-depth last year.
My set need lots of support and repetition. Our main focus this year has been teaching them phonics and using this to decode words for reading, and segmenting and blending words to spell. I became aware that by following our phonics programme my students weren't really getting the opportunity for much writing. So we have been slowly phasing this in for the past month.
Our story this week was called "The Spell" about a witch who tries to create a spell to punish her cat. In our short story she uses cobwebs and rat tail, as well as a variety of gross things. Perfect opportunity to get my kids to write and use their imaginations.
We started by having them work in pairs and deciding what they would make. Prior to this I passed out recipe cards for them to look at and understand the structure of their writing. The pairs came up with a list of ingredients and recorded it in their books. The next step was for them to create their ingredients using Play-Do and paper.
Students creating 'boogies' and eyeballs for their disgusting recipe.

The previous day we had come up with our list of cooking verbs. I was completely blown away by how many they came up with.
Next, they were able to take their ingredients and actually act out what they wanted to do. After they did their first instruction, they wrote it out. We wrote the first 3 together, checking for punctuation and complete sentences. They then took off and wanted to finish their recipes on their own. I loved how excited they were and their ability to try out new words in sentences.
Acting out how to cook their recipe and recording each step in their books. 

Overall I would say this has been our most successful writing piece. Loved being able to hit the different learning styles of my students for once, it can be hard to reach them sometimes.
Do you have a creative idea to get children to write?