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Helping at home

We will value and share any research that your child carries out at home linked to our topics. The staff at Crosby Library are very welcoming and will happily order in topic related books to support.

English

Handwriting: 

Practise letter formation and joins. It is important that capital letters are clearly distinguishable.

All of our lower case letters start at the bottom. 

We teach all of the letters that start with the curly 'c' shape first (c, a, d, g, o, q).

We teach all of the letters that begin with the 'l' shape together (l, b, h, k, t).

We talk about our 'down letters' having their chin on the line and their tail underneath (g, j, p, q, y).

The image above helps children remember which letters are ascenders and which are descenders. Ascenders go up into the blue sky, descenders go down into the soil, half way letters stay in the green grass. 

Children can practise the letter shapes using pens, pencils, crayons, paint...

Writing: 

Try to give children as many real life opportunities to write as possible (letters, shopping lists, diaries, instructions, invitations, labels). 

Encourage children to include full stops, capital letters, exclamation marks, question marks and apostrophes when writing. Encourage children to use inverted commas (speech marks), question marks, exclamation marks and commas for lists.

Encourage children to use their phonics to spell unknown words. We find that using a robot voice to segment words helps. 

Children should think about a sentence, say it, write it and then read it back to check it. 

Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation:

This year, children will be sitting a SPAG (spelling, grammar and punctuation) test. 

 

These words are classed as common exception words because (depending on dialect) sounding them out using phonics won't work. 

 

Year One Common Exception Words

the

a

do

to

today

of

said

says

are

were

was

is

his

has

I

you

your

they

be

he

me

she

we

no

go

so

by

my

here

there

where

love

come

some

one

once

ask

friend

school

put

push

full

house

our

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Year Two

door

floor

poor

because

find

kind

mind

behind

child

wild

climb

most

only

both

old

cold

gold

hold

told

every

everybody

even

great

break

steak

pretty

beautiful

after

fast

last

past

father

class

grass

pass

plant

path

bath

hour

move

prove

sure

sugar

eye

could

would

should

who

whole

any

many

clothes

busy

people

water

again

half

money

Mr

Mrs

parents

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For some of these words, children can't rely on their phonics, they will need to use different strategies to learn how to read and write them.

It helps to practise similar words together (door, floor, poor).

Sometimes, mnemonics can be helpful, because (big elephants can always understand small elephants).

For some of the words, it helps to sound them out as they are spelt (h-a-l-f).

Children can write words and use highlighters to show silent letters (climb)

A good way to teach the words could, would and should, is to learn the mnemonic - 'O U Little Devil' for the sting 'ould'. 

Handwriting practice is also a good strategy for practising spellings. 

Children can practise writing the words in their own sentences. 

 

Please help your child to learn how to spell the following homophones:

there/their/they’re, here/hear, quite/quiet, see/sea,

bare/bear, one/won, sun/son, to/too/two, be/bee,

blue/blew, night/knight

To learn these spellings, children will need to use the words in context. 

 

Spelling lists will also include words with common suffixes (ly - happily, ful - helpful).

 

Children will bring home weekly spellings to learn, for some, they will be able to apply their phonics, for others they will need to learn them by the way they look and by using some of the tricks above. It will help to revisit spellings from previous lists and to practise all of the spellings above regularly. 

 

Children will be taught to use apostrophes to spell contractions (did + not = didn't, I + will = I'll).

They will also be taught to use apostrophes to show possession (Tom's coat, the cat's bowl).

Please support your child to use apostrophes when writing at home.

 

Children are also expected to use full stops, question marks, exclamation marks and commas for lists when writing. It is good practice to encourage your child to read their own sentences back and to check that their punctuation is correct. 

 

Children will be taught about statements (It is cold.), commands (Put your coat on.), exclamations (What a beautiful day it is!) and questions (what time is it?). Each day in class, teachers display an image for children to chat about. They are then asked to write and punctuate different types of sentences. Have a go at this at home. 

 

Children will be expected to identify different types of words within sentences:

nounsadverbsadjectives (The huge man angrily shouted.)

They will be expected to recognise past tense verbs: 

I will run to school.

The boy ran to school. 

 

Reading: 

Children should read a little at home every night. It is good to start with a chat about the book. Looking at the front cover, encourage your child to tell you what they think the book will be about. Ask about any similar books they have read and link the topic to their personal experiences. Next, allow your child time to look through the book, look at illustrations and chat about what they can see. 

When reading, encourage your child to use picture clues. Encourage them to sound unknown words out. 

If they are stuck on a word and can't decode it, tell them the word and encourage them to reread the sentence. 

Ask lots of questions and discuss how characters might be feeling. Encourage your child to describe different characters and setting. 

After reading, you could role play and retell the main events. Ask your child to draw their favourite part of the story and write a sentence. It is good to reread books to build confidence and fluency. It is good to listen to your child read and for them to listen to you. You can consolidate their learning about spelling, grammar and punctuation through their reading. 

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