Newtown Community Primary School
'Newtown Primary School is a Community Primary School and we take the "Community" aspect of our title very seriously. Our children, their families and extended families are at the heart of everything we do.'

Sycamore Class (Year 1)

Welcome to Sycamore Class!

Hello! My name is Miss Pountney, and I am over the moon to be teaching Sycamore class again this year, along with our fantastic Teaching Assistant – Mrs King! This year we have got some big, fun plans for Sycamore class, and I can’t wait to experience all of this with a lovely new class! We will start the year off with our Farm to Food topic, where we learn about moving vehicles, ask questions, test different materials, and not only design, but build our very own moving vehicles! In term 2 we will be learning about the incredible things that Mary Seacole and Florence Nightingale did to improve wellbeing and care in hospitals, I have got some very exciting plans for this topic! Of course, on the run up to Christmas we will be rehearsing for our Nativity, and in term 3 after Christmas we will start our Castles and Dragon’s topic which will involve a trip to a castle! In term 4 we will be learning all about the wonderful seaside and how the seaside was enjoyed by the Victorians. The artist Wassily Kandinsky is our focus in term 5 and we will be learning all about him, his artwork, and even making our own Kandinsky inspired clay plates. In term 6 we will be learning all about the Victorians and will hopefully be going on a trip to a museum, as well as our very own Victorian day in school! Throughout the year we will also be brilliant scientists, asking questions and creating investigations on a variety of topics including Everyday materials, floating and sinking, seasonal changes, plants, and animals. All our writing will be linked to our topic work so you can look forward to writing about an unsuitable pet in term 6 and creating seaside postcards in term 4! When it comes to our maths learning we will continue to learn in a hands-on practical way as well as introducing a more formal learning approach.  

I can’t wait for another incredible year in Sycamore class! 

Term 3

This term in Sycamore has been very exciting! Science week was great fun and we learnt so much! We learnt all about Tawny owls. We learnt that they are a bird of prey, which means they eat meat, have a hooked beak and sharp talons. They are nocturnal so they hunt for their prey at night. Did you know that the classic t’wit t’woo sound associated with owls is actually just the call of the tawny owl, not other owls!  We had a great time carrying out our butterfly balloon experiment. We filled balloons with bicarbonate of soda and attached them to a bottle that contained vinegar. The mixing of the two caused a reaction which created carbon dioxide and caused the balloons to inflate. We had some brilliant entries for the 'Up in the Air' themed model competition. Clara made an owl kite, Laura made a rocket, Carter mad a flying Frankenstein, and our winner, Erin made a Firefly!

Mary Seacole Day

We had an amazing day in sycamore class for Mary Seacole day! We learnt about Jamaica as it was where Mary Seacole was born. We learnt about Jamaican music and had a go at playing some instruments that are used. We made some Jamaican rice and peas which was very tasty! In the afternoon we learnt all about how nursing has changed over the years, made some herbal remedies just like Mary Seacole would have done, and practised medicine in our very own role play hospital! The children had a fantastic time and hopefully this experience will be something they remember for years to come! 

Using a ruler

In DT this week we have been learning how to use a ruler so that we can measure the wood needed to make our moving vehicles. We learnt that we must line up whatever we are measuring with 0 on the ruler so that it is the right length and we don't end up with different lengths! Now we have everything we need to make our moving vehicles, stay tuned for some more photos!


In our DT learning we have been thinking about how we can make structures stronger using different shapes. We had a go at making and testing out some structures made with squares, and some made with triangles. We used jelly sweets and cocktail sticks to make these different structures. We found out that the cube structure was very weak and twisted and warped under the weight of the jar. However, the pyramid structures were much stronger and easily held the weight of the jar!

Everyday Materials

This term in Sycamore our science topic is all about everyday materials which ties in perfectly with our DT topic where we are making a moving vehicle. So far in science we have learnt all about some of the more common everyday materials like glass, wood, metal, plastic, and fabric. We've learnt the suitable vocabulary to describe these materials, for example we could say that wood can be bumpy, smooth, hard, stiff, and rigid. We've also been thinking about what the objects around us are made of and have been able to sort these into groups based on the material they are made from. 



Farm to Food

Sycamore have had a very busy start to the year! In our DT project, Farm to Food, we will be making a moving vehicle. So, like the engineers we are we have been busy testing different materials! We have been using vocabulary such as strong, rigid, stiff, and bendy to describe different materials and also to discuss whether they would be suitable to use to make a moving vehicle. Seeing as we will be making a vehicle, we have learnt all about the different parts that make up a vehicle, including the wheel and axle, chassis, cab, and body of the car. The wheel and axle will be the most important mechanism on our vehicles as it will allow them to move, so we have been testing objects made of different materials and shapes to find the perfect wheel and axle for our vehicles.