St Thomas of Canterbury Catholic Primary School

Live, Love, Believe.

Year 1

We are Year 1

The children will learn through five themes this year:

Welcome to Year one! Our aim this year is to build on the foundations laid in Reception class. We will provide a variety of learning opportunities to enhance the children’s learning styles. The beginning of the year will include many elements of the EYFS which will transition smoothly into the Year One National Curriculum as appropriate for each child.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please speak to a member of the Year One team at the end of the day or contact Mrs Chadwick in the office to make an appointment.


Theme 1: I am a superhero!

Our opening theme is strongly linked to the children’s ongoing exploration and discovery of themselves and the world around them. We will be visiting Cowes lifeboat station and Newport fire station to learn about the jobs of some real life superheroes. The children will discover ways in which we can all be superheroes and explore strategies to support them in a range of situations.

Literacy will focus on phonics through our ‘Read, write, Inc.’ program and will also look at superhero stories and those with predictable phrases. Children will be supported in the correct formation of letters and will begin to form simple sentences.

In maths we will be counting to 20 and beyond, whilst reading, writing and ordering these numbers. We will also look at finding 1 more/less than a given number and represent numbers using objects and number lines.

The theme of our science sessions will be the human body and our senses. In order to investigate our senses we will be trying to identify different smells, tastes and touches. Please advise a member of the team of any allergies your child may have.

The RE theme of Creation introduces the account of creation in the Bible. We learn how to praise God for His many gifts and that psalms are prayers of praise.

The Jewish religion is introduced and that Jews give thanks and praise to God.

Through the theme of Prayers, Saints and Feasts we explore the purpose of prayer and introduce the liturgical calendar. We examine how saints help us to get to know God. As part of the learning about other faiths we explore the faith of Islam and how Muslims pray five times a day.


Theme 2: Toy Story.

Our second theme in Year One is Toy Story. This is a predominately history based theme, through which we will investigate toys from the past and compare them to today’s toys. We look forward to welcoming Estelle Morris from Carisbrooke Castle. She has kindly agreed to visit us with a selection of toys from the museum’s collection – some of which are over 100 years old!

Read, write, Inc. will continue to provide targeted phonic teaching and sentence construction. We will be reading non-fiction texts linked to the theme of toys and children will begin to write their own descriptions and become secure with alphabetical order.

Maths will continue to support number recognition and writing and we will learn to spell numbers within 20. Children will be encouraged to learn the pairs of numbers totalling 20 and will begin to double small numbers through addition.

During science we will explore common materials and their basic properties. We will identify what different toys are made of and will investigate how to help Father Christmas to keep his head warm.

During the theme of Advent we will look at getting ready for the birth of Jesus through the eyes of Mary and Joseph and help to identify their response to God.

Christmas looks at how the birth of Jesus changed others and shares the story of the Wise Men and the reasons they brought gifts.


Theme 3: On My Magic Carpet.

Are you ready to fly? Our third theme sees us boarding a magic carpet and flying to India. But not before we explore our local area and the countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom. As this is a geographically based theme, we will be learning to use maps, globes, Google Maps and Street View to understand the location of countries, cities and towns across the world.

To encourage and support letter writing, each child will be given a pen pal from St Mary’s Primary. The children will exchange short letters and postcards (sent school to school) enabling them to experience letter writing and the postal system for themselves. Read, write, Inc. continues.

In maths we will use tropical and local foods to support the learning of halves and quarters. We will use arrays to represent multiplication and to record grouping when solving division problems.

Science learning is based on learning about animals from England and other countries. We will experience, first hand, the size, appearance and diet of animals from India during a visit to the Isle of Wight Zoo (details to follow at a later date).

The RE themes covered will be Revelation and Lent. Revelation reveals how God shows himself to us in Jesus and looks at the signs Jesus gave us to show that God’s kingdom was in him. We look at Jesus as a teacher and a healer. We will looks at the Sikh religion and introduces Guru Nanak.

Lent explores the basic meaning of Lent and links it to the life and teachings of Jesus. We look at how we can get ready for Easter by changing. The Sabbath day is explored in the multi-faith element.


Theme 4: Jack and the Beanstalk.

Something strange is growing in the classroom!

As the title suggests, our fourth theme focuses on plants and growth and the traditional tale of Jack and the beanstalk.

Through listening to a range of versions of the famous story, children will compare, contrast and form opinions about different texts. They will build an alternative version of the story for themselves by changing a key part of the story and sequencing sentences to form short narratives. Again, Read write Inc. continues.

Maths sessions will teach the children to estimate and measure length accurately, using standard units (cm, m). They will consolidate their learning so far and explore methodical ways of solving problems.

The classroom will be filled with plants of different kinds as a living investigation into the needs of plants takes place. The children will experience planting, caring for, measuring and recording the progress of plants.

RE this theme covers Holy Week and Easter as we highlight the importance of the Last Supper and introduce the Stations of the Cross as a prayer.

Through the theme of Easter we will look at the impact that the Resurrection had on the lives of the ordinary people who witnessed it. We will explore stories of Hinduism.


Theme 5: Castles, knights and princesses.

The focus of our final theme is the history of homes and castles. Children will talk about their own homes and everyday items we take for granted. We then explore homes 100 years ago and explore the similarities and differences of these, before travelling further back in time and finding out what life would have been like in a castle. To help our learning come to life, we will be visiting Carisbrooke Castle for a ‘Living history’ workshop.

Literacy sessions introduce a range of fiction and non-fiction texts based around the theme of castle life. The children will discuss and formulate plans to help the castle dwellers to protect their home from invasion and will write instructions, plans and their own non-fiction texts. Read, write, Inc. continues, ensuring children have a sound phonic knowledge and good sentence structure to take them into Year Two.

Maths lessons further consolidate the learning so far and encourage the children to use the skills they have learned to solve problems using addition, subtraction, multiplication or division.

Across the year we study day to day weather and the seasons through observation and photographs. During this half term the children will sort and interpret the data collected and discuss what this tells us about weather change and climate.

Our final RE themes are Pentecost and Sacraments. We look at the events of Pentecost, its meaning and how it changed the lives of the followers. We start to focus on forgiveness and healing and establish the relationship of the actions of healing and forgiveness with Jesus.


Mrs L Ellis and Mrs Wildish





Find out more about our curriculum - click on the link below:

Homework expectations

Thank you for your continued support with your child in their learning;

Each child should enjoy reading with you on a daily basis at home.  Little and often works best.    


There will be regular homework tasks in your child’s book bag…coming soon.   Initially we will be focusing on letter and number formation. They will be sent home on Friday to be completed and returned on Monday

Children - With the permission of your family you might like to use some of these websites to help your learning.  Remember to challenge yourself!


Have you seen the Kids’ Zone? Play games and visit some cool websites. You can vote for your favourites.