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Cotham Gardens Primary School

A Co-operative Academy

New Year 1 Parents 2018/2019 please click here for more information


Introducing the Year 1 team:


                      Starlings: Miranda Dinwoodie, Sally Saunders & Esther Wilcox           

Nightingales: Om Hodge, Christina Efthymiou                                    

 Kingfishers: Emmeline Smith, Manda Davies, Leni Baggley    

We are looking forward to a very exciting year in Year 1; on this page you will find some details on upcoming lessons, topics and activities, plus we'll try to keep you updated with what's going on in class!


Please ensure your child has a water bottle and book bag every day so they can be at their best!
Please make sure that your child comes to school dressed in appropriate clothing for whatever weather we are granted that day.

If someone else is picking up your child after school please let the office know about this.  If this is going to be a regular occurrence then let the office and your child's class teacher know. They can then note down these adults which will be quicker for you than telling the office each time.



It's really important that children do as much reading as they can! Ideally, they should be changing their book every day to consolidate phonics learning and progress with their decoding and comprehension. Here are 3 top tips...

  1. Check your child's book bag and reading record every day; there may be important notes or letters and tips or phonics to work on in the reading record.
  2. Read with your child. Try to spend about 5-10 minutes daily with your child reading to you. They also benefit from being read to, for example a bedtime story.
  3. Make a note in the reading record.  This could be a comment or just a tick. Most children will probably be able to finish a book at this level, but a few pages is fine. We'll see how the child is progressing and change their reading book when finished.

Each class has also has a lego challenge tower, which children add a brick to every time they change a book. Every time a child changes a book, the tower grows, and the winning class is announced in Friday assembly! They love it, and it really inspires more reading!

Thanks for your ongoing support! 


Water bottles

We have limited access to water fountains in year 1 so everyone needs a water bottle in class. It is fine to leave them in school for the week and just take them home on Fridays. We will rinse out any that are accidentally forgotten. As a healthy eating school, the rule is just water (not squash or juice).



We would love to spruce up our outdoor area with some new planting. Please let us know if you have any spare plants to donate and/or would like to help with gardening. We would also love any old saucepans or wooden spoons you may have. These will be used to make a music wall.


Show and tell

We love hearing about the children's activities out of school but do not have a formal show and tell session in year 1 because there simply isn’t time! The only exception to this is to share a book, trip or other activity that is specifically linked to the topic. Thank you for your support in this.




Year 1 is a huge year for reading and we have been really lucky in past years to have parents come in to read with children to give them extra practice. Please get in touch with your class teacher if you have half an hour a week to help in class. Straight after drop off or at the end of the day is particularly good time, but we can be flexible! You may also be interested in some really high quality, free training which is being run as part of Bristol City Council’s reading strategy for Bristol. More details here:


Tricky word books

Over the next couple of weeks we will be seeing how the children are getting on with learning to read and write tricky words. We will give them new yellow books with updated guidance which explains how to use the books in year 1. We do not test the children but during the year they are expected to learn to spell all 11 sets of spellings and use these in their writing. We find that being really familiar with them also helps a lot with their reading fluency. We use lots of games and incentives to try and keep it fun!




We have now started practicing writing sentences linked in with our Party Planner topic.  The main success criteria for their sentences are full stops, capital letters, finger spaces and sounding out words as best they can.


We have been practicing counting objects carefully. We are also focussing on recognising numbers and practicing writing them carefully (the right way round!). It is really important that the children know their numbers up to 20 before they can progress further with other maths tasks.







TOPIC: Party Planners

Party Planners We launch our Term 1 topic ‘Party Planners’ on Friday 21st September with a mini wow day. We would like all the children to bring in a teddy for a picnic on that day. We will have our proper WOW day with Year 2 nearer the end of term: Nightingales on 15th October; Starlings on 16th October and Kingfishers on 19th October. These WOW days will involve dressing up and cooking. Please keep your eyes peeled for more details nearer the time and pop the date in your diary if you think you might be able to help.

PE: Tennis

Please ensure your children have white shirt, shorts and appropriate shoes/ trainers for PE. Bring these in at the beginning of the term and they can stay in school during the whole term.

Kingfishers will have tennis on Tuesdays and P.E on Wednesdays.
Starlings will have tennis on Fridays and P.E on Mondays.

Nightingales will have tennis on Wednesdays and P.E on Tuesdays.