Sutton V.A. Lower School

Sutton Lower School

Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School Life at Sutton V.A. Lower School



River Class News 

Weather Watching (19th January 2018)

The children are taking a real interest in the weather, recording rainfall, wind direction and temperature. Each day our weather watchers go out and look at the clouds to try and identify what type of clouds are in the sky.



 Getting Active in Maths (12th January 2018)

Year 2s enjoyed their Active Maths when completing a multiplication number trail. The children worked in pairs to solve a number of multiplication problems, the answer informed which station they needed to find next.

Active Maths uses PE and physical activity to raise achievement in maths. It helps to support progress and attainment across the whole school, and raises aspirations to narrow the learning gap. The benefits of active learning in the classroom are widely acknowledged in a variety of areas of the curriculum.

Children fedback their thoughts afterwards, here are some of their views:

‘I love being outside’ Lewys

‘I like moving around and walking in maths’ Alex

‘I like the fresh air’ Samuel

‘It was great fun and I liked working with other children’ Oakham

‘I liked looking for the next number card’ Stephanie

‘I enjoyed having more space’ Greyson

‘I like being active’ Caitlin

‘I enjoyed the exercise’ Daniel





A Windy Week (5th January 2018)

It was the perfect week to start our new topic ‘Blown Away’! We have been outside describing the wind and testing the wind direction, using bubbles, a parachute and then the children went on to make their own Windsocks. They then used compasses to find out which direction the wind was coming from. A group of children worked with Mrs Helen to make an anemometer to test the wind speed.



Advent (8th December 2017)

The build up to Christmas has started with the River Advent calendar. As well as getting a little treat each day the children read a small part of the Nativity story and then add a new character to our Christmas story display, as they appear in the story.



Football Skills Festival (1st December 2017)

A team of ten from River Class spent the morning at Edward Peake School competing in a football skills festival. They enjoyed taking part in a number of activities with children from other local schools.  




A Bird’s Eye View of Sutton (24th November 2017)

We have been looking at Sutton (and various other places in the world) from a different angle using Google Earth and maps. We have begun to look at different features and symbols on maps and the children have drawn their own maps of Sutton Village.

The children used the outdoors for inspiration when creating a River Class poem. They took themselves off to a quiet area of the field away from each other and spent time reflecting before writing their contribution to our poem which will go up on our classroom wall.






Prayer Tree

We have our new Autumnal Prayer Tree in River Class, which has lots of short prayers from the children either thanking God or saying sorry to Him.




Flying High (17th November 2017)

River have finished off the history part of their Flying High topic this week by looking at the impact of flight on our lives today, by comparing life boats, and holiday transport in Victorian times to modern day Air Ambulances, Air Sea Rescue helicopters and passenger planes.

On Friday we went outdoors for our maths lessons, Year 2s went on an array hunt and spotted lots of arrays including a large one in the goal net. They used the resources to make their own arrays and went on to do division and multiplication. Year 1s used the outdoor learning to help them understand grouping in multiplication and were introduced to division by sharing equally.






Outdoor learning (10th November 2017)

The children have done some great work on 2D shapes and they enjoyed using the outdoors to create their own shapes, discussing the properties with their partners. They also went in search of 2D shapes around the school field and were able to use their knowledge to identify  many shapes.





Bread Making (20th October 2017)

In preparation for our Harvest Service, the children have been making their own bread! We made some in the bread maker, but most of it was made by hand. The children worked well together and were amazed at how the much the dough had risen by the afternoon when left to prove.

In the afternoon the children made their own flour from wheat. They used their hands to separate the grain from the chaff and then we used Mrs Ream’s mini mill to grind the grain in to flour.







Pizza Express

River Class had a brilliant morning out at Pizza Express, when the restaurant gained an additional 29 chefs! The children shaped their bases, added tomato, cheese and basil and then handed over their pizzas to be cooked. Whilst cooking we discussed the different ingredients used and then the children enjoy some or all of their pizza in the restaurant. A great visit that coincided with our Global Food Week.

It was lovely to see many children continue with their enthusiasm for being pizza chefs when they returned to school with lots of active role play, using the play equipment from around the field.
















Learning Logs (13th October 2017)

There has been some amazing effort put in to Learning Logs from River Class, children have created life cycles for some interesting animals and plants, some of these have been drawn and some have been created in 3D with lovely models. Samuel even made his out of lego!

Other children have completed menus, written about their home and who lives there and Oscar created a very large house, with his family looking out of windows. We learnt a lot about Isabel and how she has changed when she brought in wonderful model of herself.


Outdoor time (6th October 2017)

River Class made their own analogue clocks outdoors, using different length sticks to represent the clock hands. They then enjoyed challenging each other to set their clocks to various times.






Mini Beebots (29th September 2017)

As part of our ICT topic this term we are learning about algorithms. The Year Ones took on the role of being a mini Beebot and had to follow simple instructions given by their partner.





Some of the Year Ones were a little apprehensive before their first swimming lesson, but by the second visit to the pool, they were loving it! There have been lots a smiles and splashing. The children are great at getting changed quickly and sensibly much to their teacher’s relief!








Problem Solving (15th September 2017)

River Class ended their week with some problem solving activities in Numeracy. Year 1s had a selection of activities on offer: to decide whether they could fit 20 identical and 20 different items in a matchbox and then tested their predictions, whilst other had domino challenges and some played maths games on the laptops and ipads. Year 2s had games, work problems and domino challenges to solve in pairs.






Lots of effort in River Class (15th September 2017)

The children have been working hard in their subjects. We have been adding numbers using different written and mental strategies in Numeracy and story writing in Literacy. In our topic work the children has completed some lovely writing and pictures detailing the Life Cycle of a Butterfly and in Art we have looked at different animal skin patterns and have used a variety of resources to recreate our own patterns.

River have been working hard on their story writing this week. After enjoying the story ‘Oscar Got The Blame’, the children planned an alternative version. They made the most of the sunshine and used our outdoor area to help their creative writing.










What a great week! (8th September 2017)

The new River Class have settled in so well and what a fabulous class they are! Year Ones are getting used to their new routines and have amazed Mrs Whitfield with their skills. We have started our new topic ‘What do I need to be me?’, starting to look at life cycles of different animals. We now have some caterpillars in class and are going to observe their different stages of development.


As a class we have talked about our class rules and they are now displayed in the classroom, along with some interesting pictures! Can you guess the rules from these photos?





Year 2’s Values Treat

Yet again the Year 2s have won the Values Award and their treat was to make and eat strawberry ice cream! There was much excitement as the fruit was chopped and transformed in to a delicious treat.






River Class had a lovely end of year visit to Whipsnade, where they really were able to show how much they had learnt about animals during their topic.

See photos from the trip here.


Move Up Day (14th July 2017)

The children seemed very excited whilst settling in to their new class.  They enjoyed learning about each other’s likes and dislikes before painting a self- portrait, making birthday cards for each other for next year. We were very impressed at how well the new year ones listened and worked so hard, whilst we have already seen some lovely values used by the new year twos helping their new friends settle in.





Homemade Weather Station (17th July 2017)

Samuel had made and used a fantastic weather station for his learning log. It had a rain gauge, weather vane, thermometer and even some pine cones (that open with dry weather and close up in the damp!)

Super work Samuel!


Weather watchers! (7th July 2017)

We have been keeping a record of the weather over the week, looking at the forecast and then checking the temperature and, after making rain gauges, keeping records of rainfall.

On Friday we carried out an experiment and created sundials to help us track the ‘movement’ of the sun during the day.





VALUE WINNERS! (23rd June 2017)

Congratulations to Year 1’s who gained the most value stickers for the month of May!  They chose a well-earned treat of some candyfloss which Mrs Helen made for them. There were lots of sticky fingers and very happy children afterwards.





Dodgeball (16th June 2017)

River Class enjoyed a taster PE lesson from Premier Sport: Dodgeball. In the village hall the children used sponge balls to play this exciting game, where there was lots of dodging and attacking!





Outdoor Learning (9th June 2017)

We have enjoyed lots of learning outdoors this week. Children have done Numeracy, Literacy and Science over the week using natural resources for inspiration. Literacy has been based around the book ‘Stickman’ where a variety of Stickmen have been created, then the children drew images of different problems their Stickman might have, before writing their plans for their own Stickman story.


Natural resources have been used to make arrays and from these, children have written repeated addition and multiplication number sentences.  In Science there was a lot of excitement when we created our own lava lamps and began to learn the science behind them.

Mr Blunt spent the morning with River Class leading a Multi Skills competition. The children practised their skills for the first half and then the children competed in the second part of the session. They were brilliant! They showed great skill and sportsmanship. Each team was led by a Sports Leader from Ocean Class, who also did a great job, timing and demonstrating the different activities.
















Celebration (26th May 2017)

River Class had a lovely day celebrating Mrs Whitfield’s special birthday! We played a few party games and had some delicious cakes all organised by Mrs Helen and Mrs Warner. Mrs Whitfield would like to thank the children, parents and staff for making her day so special!



Value Reward (19th May 2017)

As the Year 2s won the Values in March and the Year 1s in April, we shared the reward by spending a lovely afternoon outside. The children had free choice of various activities available: parachute games, dancing in the Gazebo, whittling, den building or tennis. We finished the afternoon with some snacks and a game of Chinese Whispers.

River work hard trying to live the values and it was a great way for their efforts to be rewarded!






Clay Animals (12th May 2017)

The children have been very creative in their Art lessons. In our Animal Allsorts topic, we have been looking at different features of animals and some have designed their own super beasts which in turn they have tried to create in clay. Currently these animals are drying out before we paint them, but they are looking fabulous! Next week, the children will assess their models against their original designs.





KS1 SATs  (5th May 2017)

Our year 2s have now finished their SATs and we are so proud of them.  They have all put in a tremendous effort and actually when they were told they had finished the children  were a bit disappointed and asked if they could do more!


Golf Taster Session (5th May 2017)

Coaches from John O’ Gaunt golf club gave the children their first of two taster sessions this week.  After setting some targets up River class were given some basic instructions on holding the club and their stance and they were delighted when they managed to hit the targets! Hopefully an after school Golf Club will be on offer  shortly. More information to follow.





Sorting Animals

We have been classifying and sorting animals into different groups over the last 2 weeks. We started by looking at the difference between vertebrates and invertebrates and then went on to look at the different types of vertebrates and the characteristics of each of these groups. The children have enjoyed learning through games, research on the ipads and have even made some fortune tellers.

We have already had some fabulous learning logs where some of the children have extended their learning in the classroom to by creating detailed fact files, amazing paintings, Milen wrote a non-fiction book  and Liam looked at the strengths of a variety of animals and created a ‘super beast’.






Whispering Willows (28th April 2017)

The year ones have been enjoying some of their lessons outdoors in the Whispering Willows.





A great day in Cambridge (30th March 2017)

River enjoyed a super day at Cambridge Botanic Gardens on Thursday, made all the better by being a perfect sunny day. The children got to hold one of the world’s biggest seeds and were amazed at its size. They dissected a bean seed to learn about the different parts of a seed, before making their own pots and planting a seed in it.

We then headed off in to the glass houses and discovered how some cactus plants can survive in areas where it might not rain for 10 years.

Finally the children went on a nature trail, where they were each given a bag to find a selection of items found on the floor of the gardens.

The class had a great day and Mrs Whitfield was very proud of them and their behaviour and listening skills throughout the day.










Potting Shed (22nd March 2017)

The River Classroom has been turned in to a potting shed for our latest topic. The children have been carrying out lots of experiments to see what seeds and plants need to grow. We were amazed at our hydroponic plants and discovered that our bean seeds germinated without soil. 



In addition we have planted beans (now taken home) and radish and lettuce which we hope to eat next half term! In addition we grew some pretty amazing cress heads!










Science (10th March 2017)

The children are loving their science and have been delighted to see how their hydroponic plants are growing. They have been planting more seeds this week and are conducting experiments to compare the growth of plants without light or water, compared to those with water and light.






Place Value Outdoors (24th February 2017)

Despite the cold weather, Year 1s enjoyed their outdoor maths this week. They found pebbles with different numbers on them and put them in the correct order up to 100, discussing the value of the tens and units digits.



ICT (3rd February 2017)

Year 2s have enjoyed blogging this week. We used the scenario of a new family moving to the area and couldn’t decide which school they wanted to send their children to, so we were going to tell them about how brilliant Sutton School is!

After a bit of planning, the children took the ipads outside and started to blog! After uploading them we looked at what we liked about the different blogs and ways to make them even better.

Year 1s had great fun with the Beebots. They were using different algorithms to get the Beebots to different locations, unfortunately some of the algorithms were wrong so the children needed to work together to debug and use the correct algorithms.








The Beach comes to River! (27th January 2017)

After looking at the work of transient artist Tony Plant the children had a go at their own creations. Tony Plant works a lot in Cornwall and makes the most of the beautiful beaches, so we had to bring the beach in to the classroom! The children gathered a variety of natural items from the school field and were also able to choose shells and different stones to use in their art.



Understanding Christianity Key Stage One

‘Salvation – Why does Easter matter to Christians?’

As an introduction to their RE topic on Salvation, River Class enjoyed unpacking the Easter Story in this version of pass the parcel. Throughout the unit, we will be exploring the Christian concept of Salvation and how Christian denominations show their beliefs about Jesus’ death and resurrection in church worship at Easter.



History (20th January 2017)

River Class have continued to show such enthusiasm for in their history lessons. The children split in to groups and were given an envelope with lots of jumbled up information about the RNLI. Some focused on the history of boats, some on clothing or the different roles of the RNLI. They then set about talking about how things had changed over time in the RNLI, then produced some super pictures, writing and Years 2s created some great timelines.

It has been lovely to see the various models that some of the children have bought in connected to this topic and I know that many of them are still busy creating models at home.




Hibernation (13th January 2017)

River have been doing some research into hibernation. They have been learning about how some animals prepare for the winter and where they find a good place to sleep. The children imagined being a hibernating animal and wrote their own diaries, some of these will be on display in All Saints Church.

In their PE lesson, they have begun to put together a hibernation dance sequence interpreting different types of music.

The children have been very enthusiastic about their new topic, particulary enjoying learning about Grace Darling. I gather lots of children have been discussing the story with their families, which is great to hear!


Christmas Wishes (16th December 2016)

We hope you enjoy the gifts the children have worked so hard to make, Mrs Whitfield, Mrs Helen and Mrs Warner have been very impressed at the concentration and care the children have used in creating them.

River Class wish you all a Happy Christmas and best wishes for 2017!








Science Experiments 2nd December 2016

River have been conducting experiments using chocolate and ice cubes. After identifying the properties of solids and liquids the children placed the chocolate and ice cubes in various locations around the school. They made predictions and then recorded observations and drew conclusions from their experiments. The Year 2s discussed how we could try to ensure it was a fair test and then we checked to see if the process of turning solid chocolate in to a liquid could be reversed.



24th November 2016

River Class attended the East Beds SSP Key Stage 1 Multi Skills Festival this week. A great time was had by all!










Self Portraits (18th November 2016) 

We have been amazed by the self- portraits the children have produced! Mrs Helen broke down each stage of the process and the children then recreated themselves using water colours, pastels and wool.















 ‘Magic Pens’ (11th November 2016) 

The ‘Magic Pens’ were made by the children in order to inspire their creative writing and the pieces of elder twigs were soon transformed in to a ’Magic Pen’ that could be used to draw a new setting where their story character could step in to and begin an adventure!




Engineers of the future? (4th November 2016)

River Class were set a challenge this week to create a bridge made of paper. They were shown the gap they needed to bridge and in groups were given glue, paper and scissors. After lots of designing and testing they came together to test who had built the strongest bridge, by counting out the number of pennies they could place on the bridge before it collapsed.

The children were surprised to see that a simple design that included folding paper made it a lot stronger!




 A new member in River Class.

Mojo has arrived in River Class! The children have been watching a series of films about Mojo in order to help them develop a growth mindset. We are learning that your brain is like a muscle and needs exercising by working through challenges. It’s okay to make mistakes as we can learn from them. Mojo is awarded to a child who is really trying even if they find things difficult.


Circuits (14th October 2016)

We are coming to the end of our Big Build topic and have been talking about electricity in our homes: the danger of it and the various power sources. After learning about a continuous circuit the children were giving batteries, wires and a bulb with the only instruction to ‘Light up the bulb’. They worked well together and show great perseverance in their task and were delighted when the bulb lit up.







Getting the measure of River Class (7th October 2016)

We have been spending time measuring a variety of objects this week. Year 2s have been using rulers and decimetre strips to measure themselves, their feet and a variety of stationery around the room. Year 1s did maths outdoors on Friday and after estimating the length of our playground they worked together with metre sticks to see how close their guesses were, they then checked their measuring using a trundle wheel. The children then measured the wiggly path up to the hill, on the field, with the trundle wheel. They concentrated really well and discovered it was 94 metres, before running the length of the path and comparing their running to Usain Bolt in the 100 metres!

A class of Wolves and Pigs!

The children also completed their masks. After selecting their own resources from a large pile of junk and a variety of items from the craft cupboard they set about designing their mask on paper. This was followed by sticking, painting and lots of mess! The results were fantastic!













Handwriting Hero (23rd September 2016)

River Class have their first ‘Handwriting Hero’. Toby put in a lot of effort with his handwriting in Big Writing last week, joining his letters beautifully. He now gets his own pencil case to use in school for the week. A ‘Handwriting Hero’ is someone who really tries their best with their writing: it’s not always the person with the neatest writing, its more about effort!

I’ll huff and I’ll puff……

River have been having fun in Science, when they carried out an experiment to test different materials to see which were  best to build a house. Each group was given different materials  including sticks, straw, bricks, clay and were ask to make predictions about what would happen to their house when the wolf came and tried to blow it down. We then tested the houses with the wolf huffing and puffing (a hairdryer with a wolf disguise!) The children made observations and the Year 2s drew conclusions.






Swimming (16th September 2016) 

The children are loving their lessons! All are in the big pool and even though it’s only week 2 we have seen a big improvement in the confidence of the swimmers in the beginners group.





 River Class have also been investigating materials and sorting them into groups.






The New River Class (9th September 2016)

It has been lovely spending time with the new River Class, the Year 1s have settled in really well and are getting used to their routines. They have worked so hard and Mrs Whitfield, Mrs Helen and Mrs Warner have been very impressed at their attitude to their learning, their behaviour and their confidence! The Year 2s seemed to have all grown over the summer and have loved being the oldest in the class, being good role models to our new members.

We are started our new topic, the Big Build and have been learning about plans and maps and have been drawing some of our own. In Numeracy the children have shown some great counting skills and some of the Year 2s have been showing their skills with times tables. In Literacy the children have been writing an alternative version of the well- known story ‘The Tiger who came  to tea’, there have been crocodiles, elephants, and snakes arriving at houses and causing all sorts of problems!










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