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Primary School

Foundation Stage Newsletter

Puffins and Penguins Weekly Newsletter, 7th October 2022

Woodland Camp

This week the weather has been a little wet and windy, but this has not stopped us enjoying the Woodland Camp. We talked about how we have suitable clothing in our mud-suits and wellies, and so we will be able to use this valuable area in all weathers and all seasons. The children love exploring the woods - it is so exciting. We teach many of our school values, including Determination, Teamwork, and Independence, using our Woodland Camp.

Read Write Inc

This week’s sounds are ‘u’, ‘k’, ‘f’ and ‘e’. Please practise these sounds in your child’s Set 1 booklet. Remember to encourage the correct letter formation – there is a dot and an arrow for each letter that shows your child where to begin and which direction to write. If you have any queries, please come and ask.

This week we have been assessing the children in Read Write Inc and regrouping them ready for their next steps. Your child will work with children who are at the same reading level. Currently, some children are learning to orally blend sounds to make words, others are now blending independently to read words, and some are using the magnetic letters to spell cvc words. Your child will have 1:1 support if we think they need some extra help.


This week we have been focusing on the number 3. We looked closely at Numberblock 3 and noticed all the things that were ‘3’ about her, e.g., 3 buttons, 3 points to the crown. We noticed that her crown was made from 3 triangles, and we talked about how triangles have got 3 sides. We also discussed words that begin with ‘tri’ such as triangle, triceratops and tricycle and we found out what the 3 part was in these items. We discussed how Numberblock 3 could organise herself into different arrangements, e.g., 3 vertically, 3 horizontally or a 2 part with a 1 part on top.

We also continued to develop our understanding of subitising. This is when you instantly recognise the small amount shown WITHOUT having to count each individual item. We are now very quick at recognising 0, 1, and 2 (and also 10 when it is on a tens frame). This week we were working on different arrangements of 3 so that we could develop a mental image for each arrangement, e.g. that the 3 dots on a dice are in a diagonal line; that the 3 dots can be placed as a 2 part and the other is ’one more’; that the 3 dots can be organised into a triangle shape which some children saw as two eyes and a nose, while others saw it as a cone shape. All of these discussions are valuable to enable familiarity and to aid in being able to instantly subitise.

We started using two new representations with the children this week. One of these was a ‘five frame’. We placed 3 counters in the frames and talked about what we noticed, e.g., that no matter where you place the 3 counters there are always 2 spaces left.

We also introduced a ‘part, whole model’ (also known as a ‘cherry model’).  We began with 3 counters in the ‘whole’ section and then we investigated different ways that we could partition the counters into the two ‘parts’, e.g., 2 and 1, 3 and 0.

(If you are reading this newsletter on the School news app, you will only have text. However, if you view it on the website under Letters, Newsletters and Dates – Foundation Stage Newsletters, then you will be able to view all of the different representations that we have used in Maths this week.)


In PE we talked about the word ‘trio’ and when our teacher shouted ‘trio’ we had to quickly get into groups of 3. We revisited our learning from the previous week of throwing and catching skills to a partner, but this week we worked in groups of 3. We stood in a triangle formation, and we had to really concentrate because we weren’t sure which person they were going to throw to so we had to watch carefully and be ready to catch the beanbag.

Reading for Pleasure – Mystery Reader

We are proud to be supporting and encouraging a love of reading culture across the whole school. We had another ‘Mystery Reader’ this week who read aloud one of their favourite books. This week the mystery reader was one of our teachers from a different age group called Ms Rushworth. She read the story ‘Oh, Little Jack!’ which was about a little rabbit who was the smallest in his family. The children were excited to find out who their mystery reader was, and they thoroughly enjoyed the story. Thank you, Ms Rushworth!

Reading for Pleasure – Story boxes

This week we introduced the concept of a story box to the children. This is a fantastic way to promote oral retelling of a story along with props for the children to use. For our first one we used the story of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’. A teacher told the story first to make sure that we were all familiar with it and we all joined in with the repeating phrases, such as ‘Who’s been sitting in my chair?’ This story tied in well with our Maths this week as there were many opportunities to practise touch-counting to 3, as well as sorting the 3 bowls, 3 spoons, 3 chairs and 3 beds into size order. We found the actual chair that Goldilocks had broken and some of us tried to mend it for Baby Bear. It was wonderful to see the children exploring the story props and retelling the story to each other.

Home Learning

  • Enjoy the story ‘On the way home' read by ………….
  • Use your handwriting booklet to practise writing the sounds taught in RWI. This week we have covered u, k, f, and e.
  • Join in with the Maggie Muncher oral blending activity.
  • Join in with the ‘3 or not 3’ dinosaur subitizing activity on Seesaw. Your score will be shown in the top right hand of the screen. Can you then challenge yourself to improve your score?

School Entry Questionnaire

Next week, you will be sent an email with a link to a School Entry Questionnaire on behalf of the School Nurse Team. The School Nurse service is part of 0-19 Torbay and works in partnership with parents, school staff, GPs, health visitors, safeguarding services, and other agencies to support your child’s health and wellbeing.

Please complete the questionnaire within three weeks. All information and results are treated confidentially.

Kind Regards,

Mrs Bastin, Mrs Clague and the Foundation Stage Team.

Preston Primary School Academy
Old Paignton Road

01803 607075