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Hello and welcome to Year 1! I am Miss Kleanthous the Year 1 teacher. Mrs Oliarnyk, Mrs Sheares and Miss McAviney complete the Year 1 team. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask any one of us and we will do our best to help.





In year one at Grace Mary, we primarily learn to read through phonics. We use and follow the Read Write Inc. phonics scheme to build knowledge and application of sounds in words to develop vocabulary and eventually into writing. Read Write Inc. phonics is developed in sets of sounds and we would expect children to be working on set 2 and set 3 sounds in year one.

Reading in year one is not only about knowledge of sounds but developing children's enjoyment and comprehension of a variety of texts like traditional tales, such as Jack and the Beanstalk and short rhymes and poems that children are encouraged to perform to each another.

The link below provides more detailed information about the way we teach phonics at Grace Mary and some useful tips to support your child's reading at home! 





Phonics Guidance for Parents


Grace Mary develops children's writing in year one through focusing on connecting knowledge of reading sounds into applying them into written words. Children are encouraged and supported to create sentences verbally and remember them before writing them down and check they make sense. Children are encouraged to create writing pieces from different genres, such as forming narratives by retelling traditional tales or developing information texts all about our creative curriculum topics, for example The Royal Family.


In year 1, we follow the national curriculum for mathematics. We teach a mastery approach so that all children access the learning and have the potential to succeed. We make use of many visual resources like 10 frames, double sided counters, egg boxes, bead strings and unifix cubes. This helps the children to visualise the maths and make connections. 


We carry out basic skills sessions every day, focusing on key objectives to support children in becoming fluent. Click the overview below to see what skills we are covering this term. 


In year one, we focus on four different topics within our Science curriculum; Plants, Animals including Humans, Everyday Materials and Seasonal Changes. These topics allow our children to gain a deep and varied knowledge of the world around them. Children further develop their scientific knowledge through exciting investigations and exploring new ideas with their class.



This topic supports children to identify and label a variety of plants as well as describing their structure.


Animals including Humans

Children learn all about themselves in this topic, through naming and identifying body parts and senses.

The structure and body parts of animals are also explored, whereby children compare animals body parts with other animals and humans.


Everyday Materials

This topic is all about learning what objects are made from, experiencing new materials and being able to describe their properties from looking and feeling them. Children's knowledge is further expanded through comparing and grouping materials based on their properties, which is where children at Grace Mary are encouraged to justify their reasoning.


Seasonal Changes

Children become engrossed in the outside environment and how the weather, temperature and season can affect nature. Children identify and describe the weather outside and from this name the season.





Creative Curriculum

In year one at Grace Mary, we teach the foundation subjects (Art, Design and Technology, Geography and History) through an exciting, stimulating and inspiring topic. Every half term, a new topic is introduced with a 'Stunning Start' that we know will engage the children instantly.


Here are year one's topic for the academic year:


Autumn 1: The Royal Family

Autumn 2: Castaway


Spring 1: An African Safari

Spring 2: Homes in the Past


Summer 1: Wonder Emporium

Summer 2: All Aboard!



Autumn 1: Online Safety and Grouping and Sorting

Autumn 2: Grouping and Sorting

Spring 1: E-safety and Pictograms

Spring 2: Pictograms

Summer 1: E-safety and Lego Builder

Summer 2: Maze Explorer


Autumn 1: Basic Movement

Autumn 2: Gymnastics

Spring 1: Net and wall games (tennis)

Spring 2: Invasion games

Summer 1: Striking and fielding (cricket)

Summer 2: Athletics (Sports day practice)


Autumn 1: What do Christians believe God is like?

Autumn 2: Why does Christmas matter to Christians?

Spring 1: Why does Easter matter to Christians?

Spring 2: What is the 'good news' Christians say Jesus brings?

Summer 1: Beginning to learn Islam: What can we learn from stories of the Prophet?

Summer 2: Beginning to learn Islam: What do Muslims in Sandwell believe and how do they live?