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Beckington and Mells

Church Schools Federation

“The best we can be”

RAGSTONE class (reception, year 1)

Ragstone bubble exploring and using the climbing equipment on the feild - many thanks PFA

Ragstone Bubble had lots of fun today during forest school, cooking hotdogs, toasting marshmallows and drinking hot chocolate - a fantastic end to a great week, well done Ragstone Bubble

Water Fun - Ragstone Bubble enjoyed some water fun on Thursday, I think the best thing was when they could attach Mr Shipway with water!

Dear Parents,


As we enter the final term of the academic year I would like to thank you for all of the work you have done with your children at home so far. This has been a very strange time for all of us and we have all had to adapt to a new way of working. I recognise how hard home schooling can be particularly if you are working from home or have multiple children. Please remember that something is better than nothing and anything you can do with your children will have a real impact on their development.



The whole school has put together a whole school topic that we are calling ‘Superheroes’, (if you haven’t already view the Facebook Page for our ‘Superhero’ video). We felt that this is a relevant subject at the moment and a good opportunity to explore and think about the people who help us and inspire us. The topic map splits the activities into categories, for example: ‘helping our environment’ and ‘helping our bodies’ etc. What follows are suggested activities. Please do not feel that you need to work through all of these but pick and choose the ones your child is interested in doing. You can also think of some of your own if you wish too but it would be great if the activities you choose cover all of the areas. Please continue to send us photos and updates of your learning at home. I love seeing it.


What I would like the reception children to do is to create a 'Superhero' book of the front line workers. I would like the children to draw me a fantastic picture of the front line workers and then write a few sentences about what their job is, for example, “A doctor looks after people when they are ill. They use a stethoscope to hear someone’s heart. They give people medicine and tablets to feel better.” Children could also write simple sentences about going to doctors / vets / etc. They could also tell me what certain front line workers do. Can they use and and because to join two sentences (For example ‘we go to the doctors because we might not be filling too well). I have included a layout sheet on our class page.

Children could also write and draw people that help them at school, what do they do, how do they help them?


Please continue to use Doodle Maths and Spell.


It is important that your child continues to read and write regularly to maintain the skills they have been learning in school and the activities we have suggested are aimed at supporting the different areas of literacy.


Your child’s well-being continues to be our primary concern. In order to learn they must be happy and healthy. If you have any concerns please contact me and I will be happy to help.


Happy Learning and any problems please don’t hesitate to contact me

Mr Shipway

Home Learning


As you know next Friday is the 75th anniversary of VE Day, if we were at school Ragstone class would have looked at this special day and created pieces of art, displays and writing on this special day.


Although we are not at school at the moment we were wondering if the children could look at this day as part of their home learning.


Mells staff have put together a variety of activities and ideas to get you in the VE Day mood. Please don’t feel that you need to do all of them but it would be great if you could select a few to enjoy together. Please also find attached details of our commemorative tea cup design competition and a page of 1940’s games and instructions on how to play them for some simple wartime fun. Please find attached an activity page.


Please follow the link to see the introductory video Mrs P-B made to get the children in the spirit of things. (You might need to copy and paste this link)


Please take photos and videos of any 1940’s fun that you have and send it into school. We would like to make a commemorative video of all of your experiences as a gift to our children to help them remember this special celebration.

I hope all the children are safe and well at home and you are also keeping safe

Many thanks

Mr Shipway


Dear Parents,

Please find attached a new set of home learning activities for you to complete at home.




We have put together a whole school topic that we are calling ‘Keeping Happy, Keeping Healthy’. We felt that this is a relevant subject at the moment and one that you can explore at home. The topic map splits the activities into categories, for example: The body, Food, Wellbeing etc. What follows are suggested activities. Please do not feel that you need to work through all of these but pick and choose the ones your child is interested in doing. You can also think of some of your own if you wish too but it would be great if the activities you choose cover all of the areas. Please continue to send me photos and updates of your learning at home we love seeing it.


I have also included links to daily Maths and Phonics lesson, please do not feel any pressure to rush through these. It is important that your child continues to read and write regularly to maintain the skills they have been learning in school and the activities we have suggested are aimed at supporting the different areas of literacy. I have also attached letter formation sheets, daily work on letter formation is really important for children.




There are ideas for maths activities this week on the topic page I have included, or following the link on the topic page to an online resource from White Rose Maths, the maths scheme that we follow in school. Please use following link


The lessons are split into separate weeks, with 5 lessons in each week (one for each day of the normal school week). The lessons comprise of an explanation video, activities and PowerPoints and on occasion some worksheets (that might need to be downloaded and printed). The lessons have been designed to follow on from each other so please complete them in the order provided on the website. If your child struggles with a particular lesson then please feel free to repeat this with them the following day if they are still struggling then please let me know and we will put together some additional activities for your child to work through.


I have also included number formation sheets, it would be great if the children continue to write and work on their numbers as this is a fundamental skill, please make sure the children form and write their numbers correctly.




If your child is struggling with the current situation Axel Scheffler, the illustrator of The Gruffalo has helped produce a children’s book to help explain what is happening. It is free to download here:


At this time your child’s wellbeing is our most important consideration. In order to learn successfully they must be happy and healthy.


I am aware that all this information seems a bit overwhelming, but please with children in reception try as do things little and often and if there are any problems or questions don’t hesitate to contact me


Happy Learning


Mr Shipway


Welcome to Ragstone Class. I am the class teacher, Mr Shipway


I will update this page regularly with pictures of the children and information about what we are learning in Ragstone Class.

Our learning so far this term...

Ragstone have been busy this term learning all about different types of shapes (2D and 3D shapes). The children have been on shape hunts around to school trying to locate and find 2D and 3D shapes within our surroundings. We have also started to look at patterns and the children have been learning about the difference between a repeating pattern and a normal pattern, like a pattern on a giraffee or leopard. 


Reception class really enjoyed World Book Day, what a fantastic array of outfits! 

STEAM WEEK (3rd February)

During STEAM week the children have been busy trying out lots of different activities relating to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.

Thursday 6th February

On this day we were very lucky to have three chefs in to tell us all about eating healthy and the different types of food we should eat. We learnt that if we want energy that we should eat pasta and what goes into a dough to enable us to make bread. The children (with some help) made a dough and turned it into lovely bread sticks for the whole school to share later in the day. The children also tried different types of cheeses, as well as olives.

Wednesday 5th February

Before lunchtime the children were Engineers as they had to design a house for 'The Three Little Pigs' to stay safe in as later on in the day the Big Bad Wolf was going to come in and try and blow down their houses. The children chose their building materials (duplo/Lego bricks, straws, lollysticks or sugar cubes!) and made some great designs - after break time they had time to create their houses before the wolf appeared...they loved seeing the Wolf trying to blow the houses!


Wednesday 5th February

In the afternoon we put on our special coats and goggles and became scientists again when we looked at a range of different objects and discussed what they were made out of. After looking at them we were told the Big Bad Wolf was going to come back to see how far these items would go if they were blown. The children made predictions and we waited for the wolf to arrive to start blowing these different objects to see if our predictions were correct.

Tuesday 4th February

With the help of Miss Brett we made 'Three Little Pig' cupcakes.

Monday 3rd February

The children created their own pig masks using paint or a collage. 



Wednesday 29th January we continued our theme on identifying what materials were waterproof. In today's lesson the children were given a challenge of making a new umbrella, but first of all they had to investigate and find out what materials were waterproof.

Reception children have started to become scientists on a Wednesday afternoon, recently the children have learnt what the word predict means and how a lot of scientists use this word. The children have investigated and made predictions on what objects might float and sink in water along with predicting what materials are waterproof. They really enjoyed trying to get wet under an umbrella when we started predicting whether we would get wet or not!


Welly Walk to the St Andrews Church

During this term in RE we have been learning and talking about our own special places. After talking about our special places the children learnt about a special place for Christians. They learnt that a Church is a special place and has lots of different things inside, after watching a video about these special objects we then spent a morning exploring and seeing if we could locate these items in St Andrews Church

Festival of Light Visit - Tuesday 17th December

Reception children spent the afternoon and early evening exploring the lights at Longleat and listening and watching the singing Christmas tree. 


We explored the thrilling odyssey as myths and legends from across the world are brought to life. Filled with extraordinary creatures, ancient deities, magnificent scenery and stunning structures; don't miss the most amazing adventure of them all.

The Sleepy Shepherd - Christmas Nativity

Well Reception children were absolute stars this week, (w/c 9th December) with our Christmas play, below are pictures from the play. The children performed so well and remembered so many words - well done!

PE with IG Sports

Reception children were lucky this week to have a special PE lesson by IG Sports. They worked on their hopping, running, jumping and dodging skills, while going on a 'safari'


Over the last few weeks Reception children have been learning all about different animals. Miss Brett has taught us all about nocturnal and diurnal animals and what they mean. This week (W/B 18th November) we lucky to see an actual nocturnal animal in Basalt outside area.

We learnt about what nocturnal and diurnal means and sorted animals into different groups using the IWB.

Welly Walk

Today (Thursday 10th) Reception children went on their first welly walk in Mells, we went on Autumn walk to Mells park where we found conkers! The children explored the signs of Autumn, counted the conkers we found and described how they felt in and out of their cases.Next week we will be doing some descriptive writing on how they feel to touch and look at. I think they also enjoyed going on the swings and the roundabout at the park!


We have started to learn about Harvest in Ragstone class, getting reading for the Harvest Festival. Today (Wednesday 26th September) we picked apples from the apple trees in the garden and used them to make apple cup cakes. The children were excellent cup cake makers; they cut the apples, mixed the cake mixture, cracked some eggs and they all remembered we had to wash our hands before we started because of 'invisible' germs.


Ragstone class have had a busy start to the term, we have been busy learning the story of 'The Little Red Hen', using a story map and actions to help us remember the story. The children have started to label parts of the story, for example: baking the bread, grinding the bread and kneading the bread along with the characters from the story.

The children have been fantastic at learning this so quickly and understanding the way bread is made.  From this we attempted our own bread making in school and from all the smiley faces I think it was a success


In the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) there are seven ‘Areas of Learning’ and each area has its own ‘Early Learning Goals’. Every child works towards achieving these goals throughout their reception year. The following areas highlight the Early Learning Goals that every reception age child is expected to achieve by June. June is when every child’s 'grade' for each Early Learning Goal has to be recorded as ‘emerging’, ‘expected’ or ‘exceeding’ and the information has to be sent by the school to our Local Authority (Somerset).

The national average grade for each Early Learning Goal is ‘expected'. However, every child progresses differently and has different needs. We work with the children and their parents/carers to ensure that every child achieves their full potential.



1. Communication and Language

·         Listening and attention: children listen carefully to other at all times and reply to their comments and questions. They can listen to stories, accurately anticipate what happens next and respond to what they hear with appropriate comments, questions or actions. 

·         Understanding: children follow instructions involving several ideas or actions. They can answer ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions about their experiences and in response to stories or events.

·         Speaking: children express themselves effectively, showing awareness of listeners’ needs. They use past, present and future forms accurately (such as today, yesterday, before, after) when talking about events that have happened or are to happen in the future. They can connect ideas or events and explain them in detail.


2. Physical development

·         Moving and handling: children show good control and co-ordination in large (throwing, catching, climbing) and small (using scissors, holding a pencil) movements. They move confidently in a range of ways, safely negotiating space. They handle equipment and tools safely and use them correctly.

·         Health and self-care: children know the importance for good health of physical exercise, and a healthy diet, and talk about ways to keep healthy and safe. They can go to the toilet, wash their hands and dress/undress independently.


 3. Personal, social and emotional development

·         Self-confidence and self-awareness: children are confident to try new activities, and say why they like some activities more than others. They are confident to speak in a familiar group, will talk about their ideas, and will choose the resources they need for their chosen activities. They can say when they do or don’t need help from others.

·         Managing feelings and behaviour: children talk about how they and others show feelings, talk about their own and others’ behaviour, and its consequences, and know that some behaviour is unacceptable. They work as part of a group or class, and understand and follow the rules. They adjust their behaviour to different situations, and take changes of routine in their stride.

·         Making relationships: children play co-operatively, taking turns with others. They listen to one another’s ideas about how to organise their activity. They are sensitive to the needs of others and form good relationships with adults and other children.


4. Literacy

·         Reading: children read and understand simple sentences. They use letter sound knowledge to read words accurately. They also read some common irregular words such as the, said, was and of. They can answer questions about what they have read.

·         Writing: children use their letter sound knowledge to write words in ways which match their spoken sounds (eg, bootifl – beautiful). They also write some irregular common words such as the, said, was and of. They write simple sentences which can be read by themselves and others, and some words are spelt correctly.


5. Mathematics

·         Numbers: children count reliably with numbers from 1 to 20, place them in order and say which number is one more or one less than a given number.

·         Using quantities and objects, they add and subtract two single-digit numbers and count on or back to find the answer. They solve problems, including doubling, halving and sharing.

·         Shape, space and measures: children use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money to compare quantities and objects and to solve problems. They recognise, create and describe patterns. They explore the characteristics of everyday objects and shapes and use mathematical language to describe them (eg, flat and solid shape, and using words such as corner, side to describe the shapes correctly).


6. Understanding the world

·         People and communities: children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They know that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.

·         The world: children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one another. They make observations of animals and plants and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.

·         Technology: children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools. They select and use technology for particular purposes (eg, selecting to use a remote control orcertain program on a computer)


7. Expressive arts and design

·         Exploring and using media and materials: children sing songs, make music and dance, and experiment with ways of changing them. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function (eg, mixing colours to make our own paint and creating a face from pasta or vegetables)

·         Being imaginative: children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories. (eg, creating our own supermarket or garage to role lay in, using different construction kits to build our own castles or using recycled materials to create different aliens.