Our School Day
We are a very busy school with a broad and balanced curriculum to engage all learners. Here are some examples of what we get up to:
Our School Day
To get to and from school, walking is definitely the best option! There are many benefits: it’s healthier than travelling by car, it improves the safety of pedestrians and road-users, and it respects nearby residents and parking regulations. If you do need to travel by car, please park wisely.
The school officially opens at 8.50am, however the school gates are open from 8.40am and Registration is at 9.00 am. Lessons begin promptly after registration, at 9.00 am.
At Mesne Lea, we believe that Maths is best learnt through the children having a deep, conceptual understanding of a range of mathematical ideas and a strong knowledge of number. We challenge the children to make connections across distinct mathematical domains. We believe it is important for children to not only be able to find the answers to problems, but to be able to explain the reasoning behind their lines of enquiry using accurate mathematical vocabulary. By celebrating learning and through engaging challenges, we inspire the children to increase their fluency in maths and to become increasingly sophisticated problem solvers. Lessons are planned to build on basic number acquisition using practical resources, fluency activities and then application tasks, We aspire to deliver the mastery of mathematics for each child in the school.
Phonics – Letters and Sounds with Jolly Phonics
Nursery introduce Phase 1 phonics through small focused groups and activities. Phase 1 focuses on children’s abilities to tune into sounds, listen to and remember sounds and be able to talk about sounds. The activities are intended to help children to develop these skills in preparation for beginning to hear sounds (phonemes) in words. Parents can help to consolidate this at home through activities such as playing rhyming games and reading rhyming books, playing I spy, and listening to and talking about sounds in the environment.
When appropriate, the practitioners will then introduce the initial sounds from Phase 2.
Reception children will be taught Phase 2 and Phase 3 phonics. If children are capable, they will move onto Phase 4 and 5. The phonic sessions will last 20 minutes and there are also enhanced phonic activities within the indoor and outdoor environment available for the children to explore independently throughout the day. If appropriate for their stage of development, some children may go into Key Stage 1 phonics groups.
The purpose of phase 2 is to teach at least 19 letters, and move children on from oral blending and segmentation to blending and segmenting with letters. By the end of the phase many children should be able to read some VC (e.g. is, it, at) and CVC (e.g. cat, sit, dog, map) words and to spell them either using magnetic letters or by writing the letters on paper or on whiteboards. During the phase they will be introduced to reading two-syllable words and simple captions. They will also learn to read some high-frequency ‘tricky’ words: the, to, go, no.
The purpose of phase 3 is to teach another 25 sounds, most of them comprising two letters (e.g. th, ee, oa), so the children can represent each of about 42 sounds by a letter, digraph (2 letters) or trigraph (3 letters e.g. igh). Children also continue to practice CVC blending and segmentation in this phase and will apply their knowledge of blending and segmenting to reading and spelling simple two-syllable words and captions. They will learn letter names during this phase, learn to read some more tricky words and also begin to learn to spell some of these words.
Word walls are sent home each week for children to practice words which are appropriate to each child’s stage of development, a shared reading book is also sent home which children may begin to read independently as they grow in confidence.
In Key Stage 1 children are streamed into high quality, phased phonics groups, informed by their half-termly assessments. They meet on a daily basis for 25 minutes and though phonics is taught as a discrete lesson, children have the opportunity to consolidate their learning through the continuous provision and literacy lessons in the classroom. Children are expected to complete Phase 4 and Phase 5 during Year 1 in order to meet the requirements of the phonic screening check.
The purpose of phase 4 is to consolidate children’s knowledge in reading and spelling words and captions and focus on reading and spelling words with adjacent consonants (e.g. tent
The purpose of phase 5 is for children to broaden their knowledge of letters and sounds for use in reading and spelling. They will learn new graphemes and alternative pronunciations for these and graphemes they already know, where relevant. Some of the alternatives will already have been encountered in the high-frequency words that have been taught. Children become quicker at recognising graphemes of more than one letter in words and at blending the phonemes they represent. When spelling words they will learn to choose the appropriate graphemes to represent phonemes and begin to build word-specific knowledge of the spellings of words.
By the beginning of Phase Six, children should know most of the common grapheme–phoneme correspondences (GPCs). They should be able to read hundreds of words, doing this in three ways:
*reading the words automatically if they are very familiar;
*decoding them quickly and silently because their sounding and blending routine is now well established;
*decoding them aloud.
Children’s spelling should be phonemically accurate, although it may still be a little unconventional at times. Spelling usually lags behind reading, as it is harder. During this phase, children become fluent readers and increasingly accurate spellers.
Reading Scheme – Oxford Reading Tree and Project X Book
Phonics Apps and Websites
We strive to provide a challenging and engaging English Curriculum; we want our pupils to be literate individuals with the skills to thrive in life. We work hard to facilitate opportunities for those with a passion for language or literature to pursue this further. As a school we endeavour to nurture a love for reading and the children at Mesne Lea enjoy sharing books with both adults and their peers. School requests that children read at home at least 3 times per week and record in their diaries. Children have access to a range of genres and texts and reading skills are used throughout our Literacy lessons and are embedded throughout the wider curriculum.
Here at Mesne Lea we believe that children should find writing enjoyable and engaging. Teachers strive to plan lessons that are inspired by the world around us and texts relating to the lives of our children. Lesson journeys are planned to support a build up of skills, whilst giving the children the chance to apply these skills in a range of exciting and purposeful ways.
All children benefit from a variety of dishes, freshly cooked on the premises, as well as vegetarian options, salad bar and fresh fruit (as alternative to puddings).
Facilities are available for children bringing packed lunches and they can enjoy their meal in the dining room with the other children, when school dinners are served.
(These alternate depending on day and Year group)