Welcome to the Sandpipers Class! 


Teacher: Abbie Heseltine, Carol Whitehead (Thursday)

TAs: Diane Molden, Nathan Tierney, Emily TIbbs and Sephanie Heywood


Hairy, Scary Beast

The Sandpipers class had a fun-filled half-term learning through our topic, ‘Hairy Scary Beasts’. In English, they explored ‘The Colour Monster’ by Anne Llenas. The chidlren explored the story through reading, role play, small-world characters, and created sentences around the story using colourful semantics. In phonics, the Sandpipers have been practising Phase 2 to ensure retention, introducing new Phase 3 sounds and new common exception words. The children have worked hard in one-to-one reading. In one of their favourite lessons, Move and Mark, the children tried their best to improve their letter formation.

In Maths we worked on numbers up to 20, 2D shapes, and repeating patterns. The children enjoyed festive Maths activities, including Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day, and Spring based activities. In Science, the Sandpipers have been concentrating on categories of animals, such as mammals, fish, birds, and amphibians. They were able to categorise animals using miniature models. 

In PSHE, the focus has been on our emotions through the Colour Monster story. The children could identify their emotions during the register and in the moment throughout the day. We have also begun determining what to do when we feel angry, sad, or worried. The children who are in Year 5 have also been working on first aid. In Art, the Sandpipers learned about the artist Angela Haseltine Pozzi. Her artwork inspired us to create an ocean using recycled material. We also decided to create fish and turtles. 

In History, the Sandpipers explored the local area, including how the local area looked in the past and the function of cotton mills. They have explored cotton, made yarn, and made clothes for the Sandpiper dolls. The Sandpipers have enjoyed Spring 1, and everyone is excited to welcome them back from Spring 2. The new learning topic is ‘Food Glorious Food’.


At Halcyon Way we use Signalong as a part of a Total Communication Approach, we are constantly using core vocabulary with the children to support their language development and then through each of our topics we introduce new signs and language, which extends their vocabulary further. We also have two “Signs of the Week” which helps maintain and extend key knowledge and skills of everyday vocabulary.

Each half term we will be creating a short video showcasing and demonstrating signs relavent for the current term so that you can learn the signs and further this learning at home.

Click play to watch this half terms Signalong video!


If your child has a school dinner, the school menus can be accessed by clicking here. For children who bring a packed lunch, please remember to provide healthy and balanced options. We are a Healthy School and will be focusing on healthy eating and how children can make healthy lifestyle choices.

How You Can Help at Home

The following activities are suggested as support activities you can enjoy with your child and reinforce the learning the Sandpipers are focusing on this half term. Our topic this half term is “Hairy Scary Beast”.

  • Our main literature is ‘Colour Monster’ and ‘As Soon as Fred Gets Out of Bed’ by Jack Prelutsky. Please share the literature at home to support retention; they can be found on YouTube.
  • Enjoy reading the child’s weekly reading book. Ask questions to support decoding and blending words; discuss what you see in the picture.
  • We will explore high-frequency words; the sounds for this term will be phases 2 and 3.
  • In Science, we will explore Living Things and Habitats – Animals. The Sandpipers will be making scientific enquiries into the animals and their habitat. Explore with your child animal toys. Can your child distinguish between mammals, birds and fish? Can they identify where their eyes and mouth are? 
  • In History, we will be focusing on how the Locality of Chadderton changed. Have a day out and take your child for a walk around Chadderton. What can they find? A Mill? Asda?
  • In Physical Education, we will be practising agility. Take your child to the park. Can they balance on a seesaw?
  • In Outdoors and Up for it, the Sandpipers will explore what you can find outside. Go on a scavenger hunt with your Sandpipers. Can they find some coloured leaves? Allow your child to bring them into school so they can tell their friends about the walk and what they saw.
  • We are learning to understand numbers up to 10. Can you and your child count 10 of the same thing, maybe stones? 

As the third parent guide of the school year, I would like to thank you for all your support and understanding. Let’s make this year successful and fun!

Sandpiper Team

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