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Princes Risborough Primary School

An Academy of the Great Learners Trust




It's been another busy week in Early Years! Our English focus has been on Eric Carle's book The Hungry Caterpillar which we acted out to a beautiful piece of music: 'Peer Gynt' by Edvard Grieg. If you get the chance at home play the music with your child as we are sure they would love to show you the actions! Edvard Grieg, Peer Gynt Suite No. 1

The story has also led to some lovely writing, colouring and creative activities, and has also featured in our maths learning this week as we made a butterfly for our number bond 5+5=10!


We do have lots of photos to share with you but unfortunately various technical issues on Friday mean that we are unable to post them just yet - hopefully they will make an appearance next week! 


With regards to the Covid19 virus we, along with the rest of the school, have been vigilant in handwashing and cleaning surfaces/handles etc. throughout the week. We are aware that many of the children are suffering from sore, chapped or dry hands however it is obviously important that we maintain a rigorous approach. You are very welcome to send in a named tube of hand cream or special soap which we will help the children to apply after each handwash. Please pass the item to a member of staff for safekeeping.

The school continues to follow the guidelines from the Department for Education and will keep you updated.


We were sent this fabulous free-to-download handwashing guide from Mrs Wordsmith which we thought we would share with you!


Have a lovely weekend!

The EYFS Team smiley

Mrs Wordsmith's Foolproof Guide to Handwashing


We had a fantastic day in EYFS on Thursday celebrating World Book Day! It was lovely to see the children dressed up as their favourite character and so enthusiastic about their books. Along with the rest of the school we enjoyed the WBD assembly and D.E.A.R (Drop Everything And Read) which saw us all relaxing with a book and sharing stories! 


Elsewhere, our maths focus has been on number bonds of 10 (0+10, 1+9, 2+8, 3+7, 4+6, 5+5) and we have been using the song '5 (well, 10) little speckled frogs" to support our learning. Our topic focus has been on lifecycles and habitats as we have learnt about the lifecyle of a frog through a selection of fiction and non-fiction texts. Mrs Clark has also been busy in the make-it corner helping the children to produce their own mini ponds and frogs!


We enjoyed Celebration Assembly today - well done to everyone who received a certificate this week or last (sorry, late with the photos for last week!) - we are very proud of you all! 


Have a lovely weekend!

The EYFS Team smiley


5 little speckled frogs


More photos from last week below including our wedding tea party celebration for Miss Pursell heart; 'What's the time Mr Wolf?' maths learning; enjoying pancake day and our Celebration Assembly certificate recipients! yes



Bug Club!

Today we have sent home some information about our online reading portal, Bug Club. This is a fantastic resource and a great way to enhance the children's at-home learning. Each book is linked to their current reading level and as children work through the book there are questions to answer which earn them coins to 'spend' on the Bug Club sticker factory, treehouse and more! It's a great way to motivate otherwise-reluctant readers.


You can access Bug Club on a tablet or computer at If you have any problems signing in please speak to a member of the team! 

Have fun!

The EYFS Team yes


We have started the new term with excitement and we are continuing our “Down at the Bottom of the Garden” theme, moving from Traditional Tales to some more informative stories.  We have focused on “The Tiny Seed” by Eric Carle this week, enjoying the beautiful artwork, looking at growth and also at the changes in environments and seasons that are portrayed in the book.  You might like to look at one of the read aloud versions online and see how much the children remember.  The link to seasons has been great to explore in our maths learning about time this week and the snow really enhanced the exploration of the changes we see around us.     


Click here to access the updated end of year Early Learning Goals and some useful links to information to support learning as discussed at the recent parent consultations!

The Tiny Seed


At the end of this half term we would like to say a big thank you to you all for your support! Mrs Zucchi really enjoyed the chance to chat with so many of you at the Parent Consultations and share the children's learning with you. As ever, the door is always open so if you missed the opportunity or want time for a longer chat then just speak to one of the team!


This week at school we were excited to see the return of our resident ducks - the children enjoyed the opportunity to go out to the pond and say hello to them! Congratulations as always to all the children with completed star charts or WOW cards this week!


We hope that you have a lovely, relaxing half term - and look forward to seeing you all again on Monday 24th!


The EYFS Team smiley 


It's been a busy week in Early Years! We have been continuing our learning of traditional tales, this week with a look at The Three Little Pigs. We have looked at the different materials that the pigs used to build their houses and have incorporated lots of role play, den building, junk modelling and games to bring our learning to life.


We have also started some big scale letter formation work using scarves and talked about the different groups of letters e.g. curly caterpillar letters, one armed robot etc. 


Mrs Zucchi is looking forward to seeing you all at the Parent Consultations this coming week. If you aren't able to make either of the dates, please speak to a member of the team if you would like to organise a separate time.


Have a great week!

The EYFS Team smiley


Our focus on traditional tales has continued this week as we worked together to story map The Gingerbread Man and make up our own version - The Gingerbread Cat! The children have really enjoyed the opportunity to put their stamp onto an existing story and suggest new characters - instead of a fox, we had a cheetah! 


In maths we have been looking at more than/less than and associated language like fewer, greater etc. We have also examined number bonds, and the numbers that go together to make another number, e.g. 2+3=5, 1+4=5 and so on.


In phonics we have reached the end of Phase 2 and we feel that this consolidation process has benefitted all the children and given them increased confidence! Additionally all children are now taking part in weekly Guided Reading sessions - over the past two weeks we have examined the features of a book (front and back cover, title page, blurb, page numbers, text layout and pictures etc.) and also discussed different strategies which can help us to read - applying our phonics, using the pictures for clues and recognising repeated phrases. We have also looked at tricky words, like 'was', 'the', 'go', 'no'. Please continue this discussion at home as it will really help the children's progress with their reading! If you have any questions please speak to a member of the team! 


A few photos from this week below, including more celebrations in our Friday assembly!


Have a great week!

The EYFS Team smiley


It has been another busy week in Early Years. Much of our learning this week has centred around the text The Gingerbread Man and  the children particularly enjoyed icing and decorating their own biscuits!  In maths we have been looking at measuring, using the language longer, shorter, taller etc. Please encourage your child to compare lengths, heights etc. and apply this language at home! On Friday afternoon we had fun in the playground playing some hoop games!


It was a bumper week for completed star charts which we enjoyed celebrating in our special assembly on Friday!

Have a lovely weekend!

The EYFS Team smiley


It is hard to believe we are already two weeks into the new term and a new decade. Before any other news, the EYFS team would like to thank you all for the lovely wishes, cards and gifts at Christmas time as well as your ongoing support of your children’s learning. We are grateful to have such a wonderful community of children and parents to be a part of.


It has been an exciting start to the year with a focus on traditional tales. We have been exploring “Jack and the Beanstalk” telling the story and even making a few changes of our own when retelling the story. It has been a great opportunity to make bean pesto for a snack, check on the growth of the runner beans we planted before Christmas and learn a little more about plant life.


We linked our maths learning to our topic and have explored the numbers 5-10 more in depth, finding different ways to represent them. We hope that the focus has sparked the children’s interest in numbers in the environment and that they are pointing out numbers they recognize more and more.


We have made more phonically decodable books available to the children in the classroom and it has been lovely to see so many of them enjoying them. Please remember that the best support you can give your children in terms of learning is to read to and with them regularly, it is the surest way to improve all aspects of their learning. In phonics we have been making sure we all know the correct pronunciation of the phase 2 individual letter sounds. This is a link to a video of these sounds, and you may like to support us in ensuring that your children have the correct pronunciation to be able to blend and read more easily.  


We have much to look forward to as we continue with traditional tales in the next few weeks, we hope we can stir up a love of books and learning that will last a lifetime.


A quick note too to say that there is parent forum that meets at intervals with Mrs. Howlett and as yet there is no representative from Reception class. If anyone would like to be involved or know more could you speak to Mrs Jarman.


Also, we are so excited to be welcoming Mrs Clark back to Reception class as a teaching assistant next week. She is so looking forward to working with our class.


Have a great weekend!

Mrs Zucchi and the EYFS Team smiley


We have had lots of fun with our maths this week, looking at number bonds of 9 and 10. We incorporated our English literacy learning of Jack and the Beanstalk when we discovered 9 giant footsteps chalked into the playground, and used the giant wooden blocks, and 'tens frame' with different coloured counters to find out how many different ways we could make 10.


Well done to all the children with completed star charts this week. Don't forget we also enjoy celebrating achievements from home with WOW cards. You can download WOW cards from the website or we have blank ones in class - just speak to a member of the team! 


Welcome Back and Happy New Year to all our families!! It was lovely to see all the children back this week and to hear what they got up to over Christmas!


Mrs Zucchi will be sending out a letter w/c 13.01.2020 with information about what we are learning this term - in the meantime this is what we got up to this week:

We were fortunate to have Miss Goodyear with us for 3 days team-teaching with Mrs Zucchi. Miss Goodyear is a Leadership and Learning Consultant who works across the Great Learners Trust so we lucky to have her expertise. She engaged the children with some fun maths challenges including number bonds to 7 using the colours of the rainbow! 

Elsewhere we introduced our new Topic 'Down at the bottom of the garden' with an emphasis on traditional tales - this week our focus was Jack and the Beanstalk and we completed some fun talk-for-writing ativities around the story. 

We also made - and tasted - bean pesto! 


Well done to all the children who took part in our Christmas Reading Challenge - we celebrated with certificates in our Celebration Assembly, along with some completed star charts and WOW cards!


Best Wishes

The EYFS Team smiley


A few photos of our Twinkling Stars for you! We were really proud of all the children for their performances across 5 days of Nativity shows. Hope you enjoyed it too! heart

Twinkling Stars


December is definitely here and it's been all about Christmas this week in Early Years! The elves have been surprising us every morning and keeping us on our toes and we've been busy decorating the classroom and making snowflakes! We joined KS1 in the hall for a dress rehearsal of Wriggly Nativity on Thursday, followed by a performance to the whole school on Friday morning. The children were amazing - they can't wait to perform it for you next week! We look forward to seeing you then!


Best Wishes

The EYFS Team smiley

Parachute games in PE; Celebration Assembly 06.12.19


December already and over the weekend the Christmas elves found their way into our classroom! We hope the children enjoy their Christmas adventures as we gear up for Nativity and the end of term!


In the last week we have started looking at the season of winter, learning about melting and freezing by doing experiments and looking at cold habitats. We have been reading and acting out “Ridiculous” by Michael Coleman and using the story to get some lovely storytelling and writing. In maths we have focused on ‘more’ and ‘fewer’ playing lots of games to see if we could count out and compare objects in groups. Music has had a drumming focus with lots of good rhythms to be heard.


Rehearsals are now well under way for Wriggly Nativity and all the children are doing a fantastic job remembering the lines of our song and the actions. Don't forget to get your ticket requests back asap if you haven't already done so!


We welcome Miss Pursell (back!) to the team - she will be with us in the afternoons in Hedgehogs class and has a wealth of experience working not only in the Early Years setting but also with The Children's Centre.


Have a great week! 

Best Wishes

The EYFS Team smiley



It's been another bumper week in Early Years with many rich and varied learning experiences - and lots of fun (and lots of photos below laugh)!


We have continued our look at Diwali and the children were treated to a feast of Indian food, made for us by the amazing Mrs Khan! We had dhal, raita (mint yogurt), mango lassi (yogurt drink), vegetable biryani, halwa (sweet carrot dessert) and chapattis. Nearly all the children tried the food and it was a resounding thumbs up to Mrs Khan! On Friday we welcomed Year 1 student Adiba and her Mum who introduced us to Mehndi, which is a form of body art originating in ancient India. Thank you both!


In maths we have been looking at one more and one less than a number and using different mathematical tools (numicon, number lines, cubes and an abacus) to help us work out some basic calculations. 


Along with the rest of the school we have been taking part in Road Safety Awareness Week and the children have enjoyed role playing with the bikes and scooters. We have also looked at some online songs, including this cute Hedgehog song!


Mr Brown was in again working with a group of children in our garden area. We also had great fun working together to build (and re-build!) an enormous leaf pile, which we then enjoyed jumping in and burying ourselves under! In PE we have been looking at different ways we can move, using some of the gym equipment to help us.


We have started learning our song for the Nativity play, Wriggly Nativity! The performances are Monday 9th December (9.45am, community performance), Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th (9.45am) and Thursday 12th (1.30pm). We will be sending home letters soon regarding tickets.


And finally, a word on Ofsted: All of the staff in Early Years feel extremely proud and privileged to work with, care for and nurture your children every day. Your children are amazing and we always have their wellbeing and happiness at the heart of everything we do! We strive to build strong foundations for them and put down the roots to what we hope will be a life long love of learning! If you do have any questions or concerns please remember we have an open door policy, and Mrs Zucchi and Mrs Howlett are always available. You can also provide feedback or ask questions via the school Parent View page of the website.

Thank you for all your support.


Best Wishes

Mrs Zucchi and the EYFS Team smiley

Gardening and the leaf pile!

Road Safety, PE and Celebration Assembly!


We have had another busy week in Early Years! Our topic and writing focus has been on Diwali and our play den has been transformed with authentic throws, jewellery and costumes. We have started making our own divas out of clay (thank you Emma!) and have enjoyed learning about the story of Rama and Sita. In maths we have continued our work with money and many children are now confident in recognising the coins up to 10p or 20p, and starting to gain an understanding of their value.


On Tuesday Mr Brown came into school to do some gardening with groups of children - he will be coming in once a week to help us transform the side area into a usable space. Thank you Mr Brown!


Congratulations once again to all the children who received their Star Charts or WOW Cards in our Celebration Assembly. Great job! yes


Introducing the Travelling Toy Diary!

Last weekend our 2 travelling toys -  Ellie Elephant and Happy Hippo - went home with 2 members of the class for the first time! Every child will have a chance to take one of our little friends home for the weekend and we ask that you record an entry into the diary to show what they have been up to!

Have fun! smiley


Ellie Elephant and Happy Hippo!


A few photos below to show you what we have been up to this week:

  • The children were very excited to see our new 'Den' which arrived over the half term break. We will be using this for role play, quiet time and to link into our topic - this week it has been decorated with firework pictures!
  • When we come in after lunch we have 5 minutes of quiet time; take some deep breaths and listen to some calming music to re-focus for the afternoon! The children enjoy this opportunity to just breathe and relax.
  • Our group artwork is nearly complete and the next exciting project for the festive season is about to begin - thank you Emma for helping us!
  • We have started to learn about money, specifically the 1p, 2p, 5p and 10p coins! The children were keen to share their knowledge and work together to work out the different values.

  • Congratulations as always to all the children who received completed Star Charts or WOW Cards in our Friday Celebration Assembly yes.

  • A warm welcome to Frankie who is fitting right in and making friends.



Welcome back, we hope you all enjoyed the half term break.  We are ready for a half term full of learning and fun based around “celebrations”.  

We started this week with a look at Bonfire Night and the children have been making pictures to depict fireworks.  We will look at the way people celebrate different festivals and move on to Diwali and then Christmas later on in the term.  We will also take some time next week to reflect on Remembrance Day.


We have focused on story telling too this week and used the text “The Shopping Basket”.  A few different versions can be found online; read aloud and you might want to see what your child remembers of the story sequence.    


Story telling is such a great way of getting our children talking and Fran from our preschool is helping us with a lovely programme called Helicopter Stories, to enhance expressive language skills.


The story has also tied in really well with our maths topic which is money.  We have been learning to recognise the coins, paying for our snacks in class and writing shopping lists.  It would be lovely if you could model this at home when doing shopping together.


We had a lovely evening yesteday sharing some of the learning with parents who popped in to our open evening.  If you missed out, we will hand a few information sheets out for you to read at your leisure.


We look forward to more great learning this term. smiley


Mrs Zucchi



We rounded off a busy week in school with a special guest visitor! Mrs Spence was a Reception Class Teacher at our school for many years and now runs Smart Start to Learning, which offers drop-in play and learn sessions to foster early phonics, pre-reading and writing skills for preschool-aged children and their carers! If you have younger children it is well worth trying out one of her sessions - you can find her on Facebook @ SmartstarttoLearning.


Mrs Spence led the children (and Mrs Zucchi!) in a variety of circle games, rhymes, mimes and stories and we all had a fabulous afternoon! Thank you Mrs Spence! 

Circle games with Mrs Spence



We celebrated the children's achievements with our Star Charts, WOW cards and Superstars in our special Celebration Assembly! Sadly, we also said goodbye to Sami - he and his family are moving out of the area so he is starting at a new school after half term. Sami, we will miss you! 


We hope that you all have a lovely, restful half term break, and look forward to welcoming the children back on Tuesday 5th November!


Best Wishes

The EYFS Team smiley

Celebration Assembly 25.10.19

21 October


We had great fun on Friday afternoon with our obstacle course in the playground! The children showed great skill, coordination and balance and it was a fantastic way to help develop their gross motor skills, as well as teaching them about taking turns, supporting their friends and being patient!


We hope you enjoy the photos - there are more to follow! smiley

18 October


A big thank you to all the parents who came to the Parent Consultations this week. Mrs Zucchi really enjoyed the chance to show you the childrens' books and talk about how they are settling in to the environment. Please remember we have an Open Door policy and you are more than welcome to ask questions at any time - just speak to a member of the team!


This week we've been looking at 2D shapes in maths - with an initial focus on triangle, square, rectangle and circle. We've been talking about the properties of each shape and have been hunting for shapes in and out of the classroom. Please talk to your child about the different shapes they see all around them!


Well done to all the children who received their completed Star Charts or WOW cards in our Friday Celebration Assembly! yes


Celebration Assembly

16th October


We are fast approaching the end of the first half term and have seen some amazing learning taking place.  We have continued our theme of “1,2,3 It’s Good to be Me!”, looking at our own lives, our families, our differences and similarities.  We have observed things around us in this Autumn season by baking, making soup and going on an Autumn walk, and have been privileged to have had a parent helper give us some beautiful Autumn art input. We are focusing on the senses this week and how we discover our world. 


Parents always ask what they can do to help their child in this learning process.  You are the primary educator in their lives and always will be… the daily activities you do with them, prepare them for learning. We have added a button to EYFS pages of the website: Ideas for home which has links to lots of different websites that you can use to help your child with phonics and maths along with some other more practical suggestions. We hope you find it useful!


Best Wishes

Mrs Zucchi and the EYFS Team smiley

11th October


Some photos from today's Celebration Assembly! Well done to all the children who completed their star charts this week and who had WOW moments to share with us. Don't forget you can find WOW cards on the EYFS pages of the website, or pick one up from the classroom!


A big thank you to Ollie's Mum, Emma, who came in on Thursday afternoon to do some art with the children. Emma will be with us every week so all the children will get the opportunity to be creative with her!


Mrs Zucchi is looking forward to seeing you all at the Parent Consultations this coming week. If you haven't booked a slot yet please speak to a member of the team!


Best Wishes, The EYFS Team smiley

8th October


We were so proud of all the Hedgehogs yesterday after a fantastic Harvest Assembly - it was the first time they'd been into the main hall with the rest of the school, but there were no nerves on show! They got up, faced their audience and sang and performed beautifully! We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!


Best Wishes

The EYFS Team

7th October


Another week has passed, and we have been celebrating the new season by making vegetable soup and taking a lovely walk to collect the treasures that Autumn brings. 


Every Friday afternoon we have a Celebration Assembly with a chance to share WOW cards, completed star charts and more - the children love the opportunity to come up to the front and talk about their successes! Friday afternoon also often sees us enjoying Disco Friday - it's a fun way to finish off the week and a great reward for all their hard work! 


We hope you enjoy the pictures! 

Have a great week smiley

The EYFS Team

27th September

We are really pleased to be able to share some photos with you to show how your children have been settling into their new learning environment and making great use of all the resources! 


In the past few weeks we have made the most of the weather (when it's been good!) with lots of outdoor opportunities - den building, PE games, building with the bricks and blocks, enjoying the mud kitchen - and so much more!  We were lucky enough to join KS1 on the school field looking at a range of different vehicles which kick-started their 'Wheels and Wings' topic - the children loved looking at and climbing over them!


Inside we have started whole-class phonics and the children have been impressing with their knowledge. We used scarves to practice letter formation, have re-enacted The Enormous Turnip, baked bread (just like The Little Red Hen!), and practised number recognition and counting using number lines, numicon and fun songs and dances. 


We are all looking forward to the Harvest Assembly on Monday 7th October - and hope to see you there! We will upload some photos on here afterwards so if you can't make it you will still have the chance to see your child in action.

With best wishes

The EYFS Team

12 September 2019 




It has been a privilege to start to get to know your children over this last week and a half.  I am sure you must be so proud of the way they have adapted to the new learning environment.  Parent meetings over the last week have also been helpful in gaining an understanding of the individual children.  If you have not yet had an opportunity to meet with me and would like to, please let me know.  There is an open-door policy, so please feel free to make an appointment at any time. 


The first homework will go out this Friday and is simply a book covering exercise, allowing the children to decorate their books as they choose.   


I would also like to request a photo of your nuclear family at home, if possible, to create a family tree project.  This can simply be a photocopy of an existing picture if that is easier.  We are also looking at a focus on reading in the next little while and if you could send a photo of your child with his or her favourite book, or even reading in a favourite place, it will make it more fun. 


The children are showing themselves ready and keen to learn and play and we are all looking forward to the year ahead. 


Please keep checking this page for updates of what we have been doing in Hedgehogs Class - and what is to come! We hope to update it at least every fortnight and will include lots of photos so you can see your children enjoying their learning environment!