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Week Beginning - 20th April 2020

Hi Emeralds and Sapphires,

Welcome back after our break. We hope that you’ve had a lovely Easter.

Minibeast Hunt (Writing and Maths)

This half term we are learning all about minibeasts.  This week we are going to be bug investigators.  Look at  the Minibeast Hunt Checklist (at the bottom of the page) - has your child seen any of these minibeasts before? What are they called?

Introduce some of the places we may be able to find these minibeasts. Some suggestions of where to look include:

  • Woodlice and earwigs can be found underneath stones and rotting wood.
  • Greenfly, ladybirds and butterflies on plants and flowers.
  • Slugs and snails can usually be found when the weather is damp.
  • Ants are often in between cracks in paving.
  • Spider’s webs can be found on bushes in the early morning.
  • Pour water from a watering can onto grass to entice worms to the surface.

Time for the bug hunt! Discuss with your child the need to take care and not to frighten the minibeasts. If your child holds any of the insects, explain to them that they must be very gentle because they are small and delicate and can be easily hurt.

Next, take your child for an explore in the garden or as part of your daily exercise remembering the social distancing measures.

See how many different kinds of creatures your child can find and use a tally to show each time you find one them off using the Minibeast Hunt Checklist. You may need to help explain what a tally is – we do use them at school for our Star Point chart – each time we get a Star Point we add it to the tally by our name. If you are unable to print off the checklist or your child would like an extra challenge, you can just write down the bugs you find on a piece of paper with the tally next to it. You could also use a camera to record their findings and share the photos with us – Miss Ray especially loves a minibeast and would love to see what you find!

On return home, after you have all washed your hands, talk about what you found on your walk.


Count up the tally for each minibeast. How many did you find? Your child can write the total as a number next to the tally .

Have a discussion about what you have found and ask some questions, for example:

  • Which minibeast did you find the most of?
  • Did you find the same number of any minibeasts?
  • Which did you find the least of?
  • Can you add two groups together? For example, how many ants and woodlice did you find in total, or altogether?
  • How many minibeasts did you find altogether?



Use any photos taken on the walk to prompt discussions with your child as well as the Minibeast hunt checklist.

Ask your child to draw a picture of their favourite minibeast and write some sentences about what they saw e.g. ‘We found a big wriggly worm’

Remember that at this stage we are expecting the children to use their phonic knowledge to sound out the words - so if they spelt wriggly ‘rigerlee’ or ‘riglee’, this would be praised as they are listening to each sound they can hear and writing it down in that order.



This week for our phonics we will be learning four new tricky words. Tricky words are words that you can’t use your sounds to sound out the whole word, therefore please encourage your child to use the letter names to support the spelling of these words, e.g. “w-a-s spells was”. We use our finger to point to each letter and then swipe our finger across and say the word.

It is up to you how you divide up the activity, we have suggested doing a word each day.

  • Please practise spelling and writing (in cursive, using Langshott script) the tricky word of the day.
  • Encourage your child to use the tricky word in a sentence, for example ‘We found some ants in the garden’. 
  • Write the sentence – remember you can use a sound mat as support. Encourage your child to listen to each sound in the word as the say it. This is called segmenting. We use our phoneme fingers at school to help us. For example, to sound out the word ants we say the word slowly ‘a-n-t-s’ listening to each sound we can hear, raising a finger from a clenched fist at each new sound. We would have four fingers up for ‘a-n-t-s’ – one for each sound. 

Monday: some

Tuesday: like

Wednesday: so

Thursday: do

Friday: Tricky word bingo. Draw lines to divide a piece of paper in quarters. Your child can write a tricky word of their choice in each quarter. Use the four words we have covered this week (some, like, so, do) plus four more of your choice for your child to choose from, write one in each quarter (e.g. was, little, they, are). Then call out the tricky words  one at a time, if they have written that tricky word they cross it off – when they have crossed off all the words they have written they shout ‘bingo’.