YEAR 2 BLOG
WORLD BOOK DAY
We ended last week by celebrating World Book Day and the importance of reading. Well done to the children and staff for taking part in Book Swap and for all the wonderful World Book Day costumes! There were some amazingly creative costumes on show!
It is 150 years since the birth of Beatrix Potter, one of the world’s best-loved children’s authors, who has captured our imagination for over 100 years with her beautifully illustrated Tales.
Our theme this year was ‘The World of Beatrix Potter’
Traction Man is Here!
We began this term with a ZAP! POW! And BANG! In year 2 we have been learning about stories with recurring language. We focused on the book ‘Traction Man is Here’ for our book making project. We started by looking at the story and discussing the characters using similes, adjectives and other descriptive language. We created our own protagonist characters based on toys we owned or could imagine and came up with their costumes for different situations. Next we created our antagonists characters, one for each situation, and secondary characters for our heroes to rescue.
Then we made an interactive story plan with language for our settings and focused on recurring language on the other side. We used repeating phrases like ‘Traction Man is Here’ and ‘she is ready for anything’. When we had finished we added speech and thought bubbles to our plans to show dialogue and finally we were ready.
We finished off the project by writing our books using all the things we had practised so far making sure we included a blurb, front cover and colour illustrations. Finally we did mini book reviews after reading each other’s books and put post it’s on them with our thoughts. We even got to show them all in our assembly and they are now displayed in our classroom for all to read and enjoy.
With our exciting new building project underway we are all waiting with anticipation to see what the finished building is going to look like. Mrs Dhorajiwala said she wanted our building to ‘stand out, be colourful and match our vibrant school’ and set us a challenge.
We have, as a whole school, been looking at and studying the artist Piet Mondrian and have been discovering different ways to emulate his work. In Year 2 we have been thinking about the different Ways Mondrian uses colour. We then looked at placing colourful card , after taking votes on how we wanted to explore his work, in different variations to create different moods and effects.
We hung these up in our classroom, come and have a look!, and then had a go at colouring jars in the same style. This means we can leave then in places where the light shines and see the different colours in our classroom.
Birch and Elder Class - Year 2
How do links between indoor and outdoor environment enrich imaginations to stimulate our storytelling and children’s progress in writing
Our starting point: We began by working with Jane Glynn, resident artist, by hearing story about a magic pencil and how it changed a characters life. We then went outside and explored our natural environment trying to source materials for our magic pencils. Once they were made Jane told us the end of the story she had started and then we had to find props outside and come up with a story on the spot using those props and our own experience.
Expanding our knowledge: Whilst that first session got us excited for storytelling and the potential for our pencils we still had lots of work to do on expanding our writing skills and building our imagination muscles. We did lots of work around collecting natural materials and used our previous experience on traditional tales to practise telling stories that we knew really well. We looked at how we could use props, our bodies and just concentrated on changing the story slightly to make it our own.
Designing our ideas: Next it was time to start using our imaginations. We decided to create mud characters and settings for our stories with the only rule being we had to come up with them from scratch. It was hard at first because we wanted to use characters we already know but the mud really helped us shape the characters as we were going. Once we had done work on adjectives, similes and onomatopoeia we created descriptive character shapes further building them in our imaginations.
We then collected natural resources and designed a setting for our characters to live in . We did some writing about our settings and listened to soundscapes. This enabled us to engage our senses and describe the settings as if we were actually there thinking about how we would experience the sounds. Smells and sights.
Developing our skills: At this point we had a fully developed characters and settings. It was then time to plan our stories. We flitted between discussing our problems and resolutions and noting our ideas down ready for the stories. We wrote the stories using all the learning that we had done so far including all the literary techniques we had learned and tried writing as if we were telling our exciting stories. We focused on our audience, using what we had developed in oral storytelling, and tried our best to make it an exciting and engaging tale. We then thought about how we could improve every facet of the story and editing using special coloured pencils.
Creating our final piece: When we just thought that the storytelling was coming to a close we received a letter from a mysterious friend urging us to find what he/she had left us in the spinney. We discovered to our excitement that we had been left magic pebbles and instructions for writing a story. We would receive the pebble as payment but the story had to be imaginative. We then set about using all the techniques we had put into practice without previous story writing and then, throughout the day, wrote an off the cuff story about the magic pebble and the effect that it has. We employed discussion, imagination, literary techniques and editing to ensure our stories were the best they could be. The pebbles were given to us along with a thank you letter, explaining how we had inspired our mysterious benefactor into thinking more about how he/she/it presented their writing with a gift for our storytelling pencil.
Celebrtaing our skills:
Jane and Danyah returned to lead a workshop with the children where they heard stories and live drumming and then made little characters from the story which further inspired the childrenwith more ideas for storytelling. Danyah continues to weave her storytelling magic.