Monksmead School

Respect, Reflect, Believe, Succeed

 Welcome to Year 1

Teacher: Mrs Feldman and Miss Coy

TA: Ms Kevin, Ms Richings

Welcome to Year 1!


We hope that you’ve had a fantastic summer and are ready for the new year ahead. Please have a read of the information below; this should answer a few of the questions that you may have.  The class timetable has been uploaded onto the website, along with the KS1 long term plan so that you know the topics that we will be covering throughout the year.

Miss Coy will be teaching on Mondays and Tuesdays and Mrs Feldman will be teaching Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.




The focus at the very start of the year will be on the children’s social and emotional wellbeing as we want to make sure that, first and foremost, every child is happy in school.  After whole class teaching in each subject, the class teacher will be working with small groups for the first few weeks to help the children to settle.  The rest of the children will have ‘Discovery Time,’  known in Reception as ‘child-initiated learning.’ Discovery Time involves children making decisions about what they want to do, where, with whom, and what resources they will need. They then need time to play, to explore and experiment with their ideas. This type of learning is essential for children at this stage of development, to enable the children to embed those early learning goals, before moving on to a more formal approach to learning in the latter part of the Autumn term. 




Reading will be taught through our daily English lessons and ELS phonic sessions.  In addition, an adult will hear each child in the class read at least once a week. Each child will be given a reading record, and these will be checked when they have their individual reading time, which could be on any day, so please make sure that your child’s reading zip wallet is in school every day. Your child will take home one fully decodable book from the ELS scheme and two ‘shared reading’ books for you to share with your child.  It is very important that the ELS reading book (it will not have a ‘shared reading’ sticker on it) is read at least four times, to aid fluency and understanding. Your child should be able to read this book with very little support as every sound in the book would have been taught to them. They may need a little help with the shared reading books which aren’t as closely matched to their phonics. Whenever you read with your child, please sign and comment in their reading record.


Please try your best to read with your child every day, this will help to improve fluency and accuracy and hopefully be a lot of fun to do together. 




Homework will be given out on a Thursday and is due back on a Monday.  It will be related to work covered in class and is meant as a chance for the children to consolidate their learning.  Most weeks the work will be English and maths based, but on some occasions it may be from other curriculum areas. This work is set in addition to regular reading at home.




PE lessons will be on a Monday and Thursday every week this term.  Please make sure that your child has their PE kit (named) in school on both days. Also, it’s important that your child is able to put their own shoes on and fasten them themselves. Please do not send shoes with laces until your child is able to tie them without support.




Please make sure that your child has a named water bottle in school so that they can keep hydrated during the day. 


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to pop in to school to see one of us. We are very excited to get to know the children and start the year!


Thank you,


Mrs Feldman & Miss Coy


Phonics and Reading

At Monksmead School we have adpoted a new synthetic phoncis scheme called ELS.  ELS has a clear progression of reading books that are phonetically decodable.  Books have been carefully aligned so that they specifically match what children have been learning in class.   Children in Reception and Year 1 will bring home a phonetically decodable book, linked to their learning, each Friday.    With ELS, there is a daily phonics lesson where the teacher teaches a new sound, or reviews sounds learned earlier in the week. This is shown to the class on the whiteboard.  Children learn the letters that represent the sounds. They are then asked to read words and sentences with the new sounds in. Children will also practise writing the letters that represent the sounds.

Children learn to read letters or groups of letters by saying the sounds they represent. Pronounce the sounds as you would say them within a word. It is important to ensure that you (or the children) don’t add ‘uh’ onto the end, so for ‘m’ say ‘mm’ not ‘muh’ and for ‘l’ say ‘ull’ not ‘luh’. The below video gives you all 44 sounds in English.


Please click on the links below to see the sounds the children learn as part of ELS.


Phase 2 sounds Phase 3 sounds Phase 5 sounds

To support their love of reading, children will also be encouraged to choose a 'sharing book' - this is a book that may or may not be fully decodable but can be enjoyed with parents and family members as a book to read together.

Science Knowledge Organisers  - Autumn 2023


Click on the images below to enlarge the knowledge organiser for the individual topic area.