St Matthew’s C of E Primary School

“...encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God.” (1 Thessalonians 2:11-12)

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St Matthew’s C of E Primary School

“...encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God.” (1 Thessalonians 2:11-12)

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News and Updates

January 2020

Reception Newsletter Spring Half Term 1


Dear Parents,


Welcome back, we hope you had a lovely Christmas Break. Thank you for all the lovely cards and gifts we were all overwhelmed by the thoughts that went into them and the children’s writing in the cards made our day!

You should have received an invitation to a stay n play session. Please see the parent app for further information about this.

We are currently working on phase 3 phonics. The children are continuing to practise learning how to read and write CVC words, and this week will soon begin learning digraphs (2 letters which make 1 sound eg. Ch, sh, th).  

Home learning will continue to be sent home on a Friday along with a new reading book.

As outlined at the phonics session, please don’t worry if your child is not at the stage where they can sit through the whole reading book in one go. Every child is different, and has a different attention span. It is better to do one or two pages then put the book away than to battle through the whole book if your child has lost interest. Little and often can sometimes be the key!

On a similar note, if your child can sit through the whole book and is reading it well. Don’t automatically think this means they need to change their book more frequently. There is much more to reading than simply decoding text. Focus on fluency (reading smoothly), talk about the plot, discuss what characters might say/think, ask questions. One of Mrs. Madden’s favourite sayings is “reading is like a piece of music, the more you practise, the better it sounds”



The Weather – we will be exploring the changing season and hopefully some frost and ice

Chinese New Year – learning about the customs of Chinese people and the stories behind the New Year celebrations


Lanterns and Firecrackers

Various Non Fiction Texts


Ways to help your child at home



Other areas of learning

  • Focus particularly on numbers 11-20 as this is where the children naturally get caught out when learning to count.
  • Play games involving counting eg snakes and ladders/dominoes
  • Reinforce addition and subtraction in everyday situations eg I have …peas on my plate, if I eat… how many will be left?
  • Play doubling games eg show your child so many fingers, ask them to double and count the total.
  • Continue to read your child’s school book regularly.
  • Read a range of books as often as possible
  • Encourage your child to mark make for their own enjoyment.
  • Practise learning the names of letters as well as the sounds they make and recognising their capital equivalent In school we say “It’s name is… it’s sound is…)
  • Take your child outdoors to look at environmental and seasonal changes
  • Allow your child regular opportunities to run, jump and balance as possible. Strong gross motor skills provide firm foundations for writing skills believe it or not!
  • Watch a weather report together
  • Look at maps/globes and talk about the weather/climate in different countries.

Useful Websites/apps

Pocket phonics /Phonics street/Alphablocks/Phonics Play

Useful apps for consolidating phoneme/grapheme correspondence and letter formation.

Maths (age3-5/4-6)

A good app for a variety of mathematical concepts with the facility to print off a certificate when a level is completed.

Endless Alphabet

A useful app for reinforcing letter names, plus their capital equivalents as well as explaining the meaning of words to extend vocabulary.



Thank you for your continued support, looking forward to the Spring Term and all the opportunities it brings for the children!


The Early Years Team