Calder Class

Welcome to Calder Class - click here to see our Meet the Teacher Presentation 

Calder class is Ribchester St Wilfrid’s Foundation Stage class. The teacher is Mrs Cowgill. We are also helped by our Teaching Assistants Mrs Stott and Miss Conchie.

Calder class have PE on Tuesday and Thursday. 

Calder Newsletter - Autumn 1

Calder Newsletter - Autumn 2

 Calder Newsletter - Spring 1

Calder Newsletter - Spring 2

Calder Newsletter - Summer 1

What have Calder been up to? 

In Calder class, we learn in a variety of ways. During our independent learning time, we explore and learn, build our friendships, our communication skills, emotional and creativity, teamwork, imagination, knowledge and skills and problem solve within our classroom and outdoor area. We have a wide range of resources and space to allow this learning to happen. Adults observe play and join in when invited, watching and listening before intervening. We value play and provide safe but challenging environments that support and extend learning and development.

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 Calder website photo 2023

Photo calder 2023 learn and explore

Bikeability and Road Safety

We have been learning to cross the road safely and ride our balance bikes effectively. After watching the road safety video, we carefully crossed the road outside of school following the simple steps: STOP, LOOK, LISTEN, THINK (Is it safe to cross?), hold hands and WALK. Later in the week, we adventured further into the village where the roads were a bit busier.

We also practiced putting on our helmets and holding our bikes, then it was time to go! We learnt to manoeuvre our bikes, glide and ride them. We aim to continue building our skills and confidence in our outdoor area during Explore and Learn time.

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Cobweb Hunting and Drawing

One September Friday morning, the weather has begun to change more Autumnal and there were lots of cobwebs around the outdoor area and playground. We watched a video to see how a spider created a web before wrapping up and hunting for cobwebs. We look closely to see the webs sparkling in the sunlight, the glistening dew droplets and magnificent shapes. Afterwards, we found our favourite cobweb and carefully draw it using chalk.

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In RE, we have been learning about Harvest. We took a walk in our local area to see the different fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts that were growing in the hedgerows, from the trees and in the ground. We found cherry blossom, damsons, apples, pears, sunflower seeds, leeks, carrots and many more. Afterwards, we were very lucky to try some of the different fruits we found along the way. In English, we have been looking at the story of ‘The Little Red Hen’ so we made a link with our RE and made bread. We mixed, kneaded, proved, baked and ate our bread rolls.

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Drawing in Art

In Art, we have been learning about lines. We have experimented with a variety of medias to draw a range of lines. We have explored drawing lines and naming them then used our line knowledge to find patterns and textures. Afterwards, we used the patterns and textures to extend the lines further.

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Autumn Walk

To finish the half term, we had a themed Autumn Week. Firstly, we went on an Autumnal walk. We hunted for the warm Autumnal colours using our colour palettes – red berries, orange, red and yellow leaves, orange pumpkins, red and green tomatoes and much more. We collected leaves and apples, splashed in puddles and observed the different fruits and vegetables growing in the local allotments.

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Pumpkin Soup

As part of our Black History week, we compared two pumpkins – one green, one orange. We talked about how they were similar by both being smooth and round but also differing by sizes and colour. We linked our pumpkin knowledge to Black History and talked about how people are kind, caring, helpful and special but also different because we are all unique in the way we look and talk. Afterwards, we used the pumpkins to make soup. We learnt to chop using the bridging method, observed the soup being blended before enjoying a mug of soup on the riverbank.

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Apple Crumble

We expanded our cooking skills by making apple crumble. We carefully picked apples fresh from the tree and used the bridging method to cut them. We perfected our rubbing method by making the crumble mixture. We all enjoyed tasting our delicious, warm apple crumble.

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Ribchester Journey 

To start our topic on journeys, we took a walk around Ribchester looking for key buildings. Mrs Stott told us the history linked to the places. We found the oldest house in Ribchester, the old fire station, the post office and many pubs! 

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Remembrance Day 

We learnt about World War I and II and how the soldiers left their families to fight in the war as well as creating our own cenotaphs. We developed our fine motor skills by sewing our own poppies that we carried to the cenotaph, where we observed a 2-minute silence with the rest of the school and the Ribchester community. 

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We’re going on a Bear Hunt 

To create an interest in our new story ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’, we went on our very own bear hunt! We moved around our outdoor environment to hunt for the bear. We travelled through the long, wavy grass and wadded through the deep, cold river. We trudged through the thick, oozy mud and wandered through the big, dark forest. We also bravely walked through the swirling, whirling snowstorm until we carefully tip-toed into a narrow, gloomy cave where we found the BEAR! Luckily, it wasn’t a real bear – it was just bear shaped crisps! 

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Wildlife area 

We spent some time exploring the wildlife area. We used our physical skills to move around the area – pulling, stretching and climbing the scramble rope, running around the paths and tip-toeing around the plants. We used our observational skills to look at the different plants located in the wildlife area and searched for the hidden fairy gardens. 

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Longridge Journey 

To round up our learning about journeys, we planned and carried out a journey to Longridge. We talked about how to get to Longridge and we decided the bus would be best. We discussed the different options on what to do when in Longridge and we came to the conclusion that we would look at the Christmas lights on Berry Lane and visit the library for a story! The children thoroughly enjoyed going on the public bus to Longridge and looking at a range of books in the library. 

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Advent Candle 

We began December by lighting our Advent candle and talking about we were on the countdown to Jesus’ birthday. We carefully watched the candle burn and each day in December, we continued to think about the Story of Jesus and burn another day. 

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Decoration Day 

As a school, we started getting into Christmas spirit with our annual decoration day. We enjoyed moving around the classrooms in our houses to create different decorations. 

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We had a whole school trip to the pantomime. We travelled to Clitheroe and had a morning full of pantomime fun! We thoroughly loved watching the panto and dancing at any opportunity. 

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After lots of practicing, we performed two amazing nativity performances to our families. We worked hard to retell the Nativity story and did you know ‘A Miracle’ really did happen ‘In Town’! 
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As part of a fundraiser held after school, we made sleighs at home, which we brought in to school. 
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Christmas Dinner 
The whole school sat together and enjoyed a Christmas dinner prepared by the kitchen staff and served by the Mrs Cottam, the teachers and teaching assistants. The children loved sitting together, eating, listening to carols and having a giant family meal! 
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Jesus’ Birthday Party 
We celebrated Jesus’ birthday with a party! We enjoyed dancing, playing games, singing Happy Birthday and we were lucky enough to have a special visit from a very busy Father Christmas. 
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Nativity Scenes 
To finish the half term, we learnt about the true meaning of Christmas and created our own nativity scenes. 
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Shape People

The children used their shape knowledge to create pictures before recording how many of each shape they had used. 
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Winter Walk 

We enjoyed a walk around Ribchester looking at our natural environment, searching for signs of winter. They stroked bark, felt prickly holly, saw lichen growing on a yew tree and spotted snowdrops pushing through the grass. They investigated mole hills, squelched in the mud, listened for sheep bleating and went to say hello to some calves. We love making the most of our surroundings! 

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Representing Numbers and their Composition 

Throughout the half term, we have been looking closely at numbers and how we can represent them in different ways. We have also been working out the composition of numbers. 

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 Winter Weather 

The wintry weather came to Ribchester and we enjoyed exploring the snow and ice. We thoroughly enjoyed smashing the ice with a hammer and practising our handwriting in the snow. We used our senses and English skills to describe and explore the snow. 

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Chinese New Year 

We celebrated Chinese New Year by completing a range of activities – writing in Chinese, making a lantern and creating an artistic rabbit picture. We also enjoyed dragon dancing and trying some Chinese food. 

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Percy the Park Keeper 

In English, we have been learning about Percy the Park Keeper and how he helps and looks after the park. We wrote questions to ask Percy the Park Keeper and we were very lucky to have a visit by him! He brought some of his tools and talked to us about his day to day jobs as well as answered our questions. 

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In Maths, we have been learning about capacity. The children started by filling containers with cubes, sand or water to develop their knowledge using the new vocabulary of full, empty, half, almost empty and almost full. Afterwards, the children used their capacity knowledge to make salt dough hearts by measuring their ingredients using ‘full mini cups’. 

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The Good Samaritan 

We have been listening to ‘Stories that Jesus Heard’ during RE. One of the stories was The Good Samaritan. We talked about who helps us in a variety of situations and how we always need to help and look after everyone. Afterwards, we acted out the story.

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Shrove Tuesday 

The first day of the half term was Shrove Tuesday! We learnt about Shrove Tuesday and how some places have flipping pancake competitions. We found out it was the day before Jesus went into the wilderness for 40 days and 40 nights. It is traditionally when people used up their rich foods before giving them up for Lent.  We enjoyed making and eating pancakes in the afternoon followed by writing the method on how to make a pancake as a challenge task. 

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Fine Motor Skills 

Pre-school have been developing their fine motor skills by freeing the animals! The animals had got tangled in elastic bands so the children carefully unpicked them. Their concentration and perseverance was fantastic. 

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Dear Zoo 

In English, we have been reading the story ‘Dear Zoo’. Reception created their own version of the story whilst Pre-school created their own zoo. The children worked really hard to include recall the story, use adjectives and expand their vocabulary. 

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World Book Day 

As a school, we took part in World Book Day. We all dressed up as ‘a word’, some linked to a character or others just describing a word. Within the day, we enjoyed having the storytellers, Miss Wonka and an Oompa Loompa who retold the story of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. We enjoyed joining in with the actions and dancing! Afterwards, we designed our own sweet/chocolate and painted the characters. We were very lucky to have two sets of visitors also into class, Wyre children came to share a story of two as well as some of our parents/grandparents. It was a lovely to see the children engaged and eager to talk about the story and a wonderful way to finish the day. 

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We learnt about the how Hindu’s prepare and celebrate their Festival of Colour, Holi. We enjoyed created our own colour pictures by throwing powder paint rather than having a powder paint fight! 

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Maths – Height and Length 

We have been learning about height and length. The children have worked really hard to use the correct vocabulary of tall/tallest and short/shortest as well as long/longest and short/shortest. The children compared heights with each other, towers and objects and even had a go at measuring using non-standard units. The children compared the length of their plasticine worms, the length of their shoe to objects around the room finding longer and shorter as well as measuring using non-standard units. 

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PE – Climbing Equipment 

During PE, we explored the climbing equipment. The children thoroughly enjoyed having an obstacle course where they practiced their balancing, jumping, stepping and climbing. 

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In English, we wrote our own non-fiction booklets about ‘How to look after a dog’. To ensure we had all the information we needed, Mrs Stott’s dog, Hector came for a visit. Mrs Stott showed us lots of Hector’s things and explained what he needed to ensure he stayed healthy. 

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Spring Walk 

We enjoyed a Spring walk around Ribchester looking at the changes between seasons. To link our learning with our PSHE, we also took the litter pickers and picked up any litter we came across at the same time. We enjoyed making our local surroundings look beautiful and litter free again. 

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We learnt about the events of Easter week by creating our own parade for Palm Sunday, washing each other’s hands and sharing the bread and wine for Maundy Thursday, writing and sharing our own prayers like Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, making dull crosses for Good Friday and decorating them for Easter Sunday. We also competed against each other by rolling our hard boiled eggs and Revd. McConkey judged our decorated egg competition. 

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Courage Day 

To start the half term, we spent the day learning about our new value of courage. We talked about the meaning of courage and how we might use our courage to overcome challenges we have in life. The children challenged their own fears by walking along a plank, firstly 1 crate high until the stack was at 3 crates high leading up to a 4 crate high stack. The children showed great courage to complete the plank walk and wanted more so we lowered the plank and started to challenge again but the children were blindfolded. The whole class were excellent!  

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Traditional Tales 

Throughout the half term, we have been learning about three traditional tales, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Cinderella and The Three Little Pigs. The children were shocked to find someone had been into our class during the night and created a mess! The children created their own ‘Wanted’ posters to help find the culprit. The children also retold the story in a variety of ways through our role play area wearing masks, puppets and sequencing the pictures.  

The children investigated a variety of shoes until they decided which one might have been Cinderella’s. They also danced like Cinderella to help them get into the mindset of how she was feeling.  

The children described the materials that the houses were built from by the Three Little Pigs before learning to join and slot in DT ready to create their own house using recycled materials. The children also used their Three Little Pig and shape knowledge to create pigs from a variety of materials. 

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King Charles III Coronation 

We celebrated King Charles III’s Coronation by having a whole school picnic and party. We came to school dressed in red, white and blue and thoroughly enjoyed making the day special and memorable. 

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Our History for the half term was learning about the past, as it was the Coronation, we compared the previous two coronation photos with King Charles III’s, we talked about the clothing, the colours and the other royal elements of the photographs. We also learnt about items for the past; irons, cameras, writing materials and even shoes. To finish the topic, Mrs Stott very kindly brought into school some of her toys from when she was a little girl. 

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Outdoor Area 

After years of fundraising and waiting, we have finally seen the completion of phase 1 in our EYFS outdoor area. The team from Cool Canvas worked extremely hard for just over a week to create us a fantastic new space. The children now have a wonderful area of artificial grass, a dry river bed and water wall. The weather changed just in time for us to have so much fun exploring in the sunshine. Now to start fundraising so we can raise enough money for phase 2! A massive thank you goes to all that have support our fundraising events to enable the project to happen. 

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