Dormice - Year 1 & 2

Welcome to Dormouse class! Our teacher is Mrs Devenish, who has been teaching at Bedwell for 15 years and loves making our lessons as creative as possible. Her favourite things are cooking and being outdoors, although she doesn’t like snow very much, and is scared of spiders.

Home learning ideas:

  • Try to do as much maths as you can when you're out and about:
    • Keep on practicing counting whenever and wherever you can - how many cars are there in the street? How many trees in the field? How many trollies in the supermarket, players on the team or stairs on the way to bed? Our focus is on numbers from 10-20 this term, so things that come in groups of this size are ideal for counting practice.
    • Practice writing numbers in sand, salt or water, or try making numbers out of groups of pebbles.
    • Practice counting in 2s, 5s and 10s - counting in multiples as you go up or down stairs; counting in 2s as you pair up socks; totalling up everyone’s fingers and toes by counting in 5s...
  • Constant practice of reading and phonics is just about the most valuable thing you can do at home. Try to read with your child as often as possible and talk to them about what they’ve read - we've put together some guidance and advice on using the books your child will bring home here.  
  • We follow the Read Write Inc phonics programme, and they have provided lots of guidance on supporting your child at home, which you can read here.
  • Throughout the year we are exploring how our environment changes with the seasons. You could build on this at home in lots of ways - exploring the park, making maps or looking for signs of autumn and winter on the way to and from school. Visit the Oak National Academy for useful resources. 
  • We’re focussing on exploring and talking about our local area, so why not do the same? Can you find a new park or place to go in Stevenage that you’ve not explored together before? Could you take a few pictures or make a map of the area to share in class and help us to talk about what makes our town different to other local places?
  • Keeping fit, happy and healthy is always important. There are links to lots of great resources and workouts to help everyone in the family get active at 

Our latest news:

  • We have all enjoyed going to Forest School every Friday. We have used all our superhero powers in a number of activities. We’ve made group mandalas, log dogs, been on a colour hunt and learnt about the forest environment. We have also made cheese straws, chocolate firework sticks, smores and our favourite hot chocolate on the fire. Excitingly, we will be continuing with Forest School in the Spring term.
  • We finished off the term with a fantastic class Christmas party, dancing, playing lots of brilliant games and eating far too much! 
  • Linked to our work on instructions in English we took part in a brilliant crumble making workshop with our families. We worked together to follow instructions, mix ingredients, peel and chop fruit - and then taste our fantastic crumbles!

"As a result of highly effective training, teachers use consistent approaches to help pupils develop fluency and expression. This ensures that pupils become confident readers."

Ofsted report, 2022

We have been learning about... 

Reading - We take part in daily Read Write Inc sessions. This is the helping us with our phonics, reading and writing within ability groups. We have also looked at our favourite books and shared them within the class and written book reviews.

English - In English this term we began by learning the story of Little Charlie, which led into us creating our own journey stories. Later in the term, we moved onto instructions, learning how to make Grandma’s pizza by following a model text carefully, practicing using and giving other instructions and eventually writing our own. Our main focus has been on letter formation and making sure that we are all writing in complete sentences.


Maths - This term we have been focussing on number. We have used part-part-whole templates and tens frames to help us add and subtract using these numbers. We have also looked at doubling and halving numbers to 20.

This term's topics

English - Next half-term, we will be looking at a ‘rags to riches’ tale. Our initial text will be The Story of Pirate Tom, which we will learn by heart, using symbols and actions, so that we can use the language and structure to support our writing. We will be focussing in particular on describing characters and introducing speech. We will also continue to develop the use of accurate sentence structure and careful, consistent handwriting. We will also be looking at non-fiction texts about animals and writing a recount of our holiday news.

Maths - We will begin the term by returning to our core counting, comparing and calculating skills, becoming increasingly confident (and speedy) when working with numbers to 20. This will then lead into work with money, finding different combinations of coins that add up to a given amount and then ordering and comparing prices and totals. Later in the term we will develop our ability to count in 2s, 5s and 10s. We will practice saying, recording, counting and memorising these values, so that we can quickly spot and recall them. Finally, we will explore measurement, measuring heights, lengths and weights using a mixture of standard (metres, cm, kg) and non-standard (hands, books, marbles etc.) units.

Science - We will be looking at common animals especially those we will see on our trip to the zoo. We will learn to identify and name fish, reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals, recognising the key features of each group. We will also be finding out what animals eat and classifying them using the terms carnivores, herbivores and omnivores.

Humanities - We will be exploring our local area, investigating what the features, landmarks and ’best bits’ of Stevenage are. We will look at our position within England, the UK, Europe and the world, using a variety of different maps and recognise Stevenage from photographs, talking about the difference between our town and other areas in the UK. This will also give us the chance to develop our use of geographical vocabulary - both physical (river, lake, hill) and human (house, town, city, village, farm).

Take a look at our curriculum map for more information on our topics.