Year 1

At Thornbury, we believe that Year 1 is a year of great growth and discovery, and we're here to support your child every step of the way. Here you will find out more about our dedicated teaching team, our engaging curriculum, and the homework that will keep your child on track.

About this class

Year 1

In Year 1, children begin to develop themselves and their areas of interest as we extend our learning within a broad and balanced curriculum. If you would like to contact your child's class teacher, you are welcome to talk to them at drop off and pick up times or contact them at the school email address.

General Information

What do I need to bring to school? 

Book Bag

All children require a book bag which they will need to bring every day.

Water bottle

All children to bring a clear plastic, medium sized, bottle of water. Please can we ask for no metal bottles. 

Fruit & Snack:

All children in Year 1 are provided with one piece of fruit per day. However, children are invited to bring a piece of fruit from home for their morning playtime snack if they wish.


If you would like your child to have a carton of milk at snack time, please order this through

Important information

PE Days:

  • Indoor – Friday 
  • Outdoor – Tuesday

Reading & Phonics

We are passionate about children learning to read; we ask that families read with and hear their children read at least 5 days a week and record this by signing their child’s reading record. 

Reading books will be changed:

  • Year 1 Willow (ET) – Monday 
  • Year 1 Elderflower (EH) - Tuesday

All children will have phonics lessons every day. We follow the ELS scheme (Essential Letters and Sounds) for more information please see our Literacy page. 

Home learning

Homework will be sent home every Thursday and will need to be returned the following Tuesday. Homework will be a mixture of Maths, Literacy or Project tasks. 


Spellings will be given on a Thursday and be tested the following Friday.

Beat Your Score: 

If you wish to practise at home, your ‘Beat Your Score’ sheets can be found on the right side of this page. 

Online Resources: 

You will find your login details for the following site at the front of your reading diary. 

My Maths:


Curriculum- Yearly overview of topics

Topics Covered Throughout the Year:

Autumn Term: Just Like Me, Just Like You (mental health) and King and Country 

Spring Term: To Infinity and Beyond

Summer Term: Seaside and Explorers


Autumn Term:

In Maths we will be exploring place value (within 10) and addition and subtraction (within 10). Later in the term we will be learning about 2D and ED shape.  

In English, we will be exploring a range of texts including: ‘The Feeling Book’ by Todd Parr and ‘Alice in Wonderland’ by Lewis Carrol. We will also be learning about non-chronological texts linked to our mental health project. 

Our Science focus this term is materials. We will learn:

  • how to distinguish between an object and the material from which it is made.
  • to identify and name a variety of everyday materials, including wood, plastic, glass, metal, water, and rock.
  • to describe the simple physical properties of a variety of everyday materials.
  • compare and group together a variety of everyday materials on the basis of their simple physical properties
  • to identify and compare the suitability of a variety of everyday materials for particular uses.
  • how the shapes of solid objects made from some materials can be changed by squashing, bending, twisting and stretching. 

We will also begin to explore the seasonal changes and complete activities linked to Autumn. We will revisit this work later in the year to make comparisons with the other seasons. 

Our first Topic this term is ‘Just Like Me, Just Like You’. This is a whole school project where we discover the importance of looking after our mental health. This work will continue in our PSHE sessions where we will be learning about understanding our feelings, relaxation, hand washing, personal hygiene, health and wellbeing, sun safety, allergies and people who help us stay healthy. Closer to Christmas, we will begin to learn about families and friendships. 

Linked to our mental health unit, in Art we will begin the year by exploring the artist Henri Matisse and using line to create our own self portrait.  

After half term, our Topic is ‘King and Country’. Here we will be learning about the royal family. We will be making comparison between King Charles III, Queen Elizabeth II and Queen Elizabeth I. We will travel back in time to find out what life was like in the Tudor times. In Geography, we will learn about Plymouth landmarks and landmarks of London.

In Design Technology we will be using mechanisms to plan, create and evaluate our own moving royal carriage.

In Music, we will be working on our singing and percussion skills through our Christmas performance. 

In RE we will be asking: What Christians believe God is like? We will explore Christian traditions, customs, and artefacts that are important to them. 

In PE, we will be covering a variety of units which practise different skills. We will prepare for our sports day and have coaches from Argyle come and teach the children invasion games. We will use a combination of apparatus, equipment and just the movement of our bodies to keep our bodies fit and healthy.


Spring term: 

In Maths, we will use our prior learning and begin to explore place value (within 50) and addition and subtraction (within 20). During this term we will also be learning about measurement (length, height, mass and volume). 

In English, our fiction texts this term are ‘Seven Ways to Catch the Moon’ by M. P. Robertson and ‘Tatty Ratty’ by Helen Cooper. Our poetry unit is ‘Zim Zam Zoom’ by James Carter. Our final poems will be submitted to the Young Writer Poetry Competition. Our non-fiction text this term is ‘Seed to Sunflower’. Our Non-Fiction text this term is ‘Seed to Sunflower’ where we will be looking at instructions. 

In Science, our unit this term is Plants. We will be taught how to:

  • identify and name a variety of common wild and garden plants, including deciduous and evergreen trees. 
  • identify and describe the basic structure of a variety of common flowering plants, including trees. 
  • observe and describe how seeds and bulbs grow into mature plants.
  • find out and describe how plants need water, light and a suitable temperature to grow and stay healthy. 

We will continue to explore the seasonal changes in our school grounds as we observe the signs of Winter and Spring. We will also be taking part in our Ocean Curriculum Deep Drive Days. 

Our Topic this term is ‘To Infinity and Beyond’. In this unit we will be comparing the space travel of Neil Armstrong to the moon in 1969 and Tim Peake to the International Space Station in 2015. 

In Art we will be exploring how Vincent Van Gogh use line, pattern and shape to create the movement in a night’s sky. We will be applying these skills to create our own space painting inspired by Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’. 

In DT, we will be creating our own structures. 

In Geography, we will be working on our geographical skills and fieldwork. We will be using world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans. We will be using simple compass directions (north, south, east and west) and locational and directional language. We will also be using our school grounds and local area to explore aerial photographs, landmarks, basic human and physical features and construct basic symbols in a key. 

In RE, we will be exploring Judaism and how Jewish people live. We will explore Jewish traditions, customs, and artefacts that are important to them.

In PSHE, we will continue our work around families and relationships. This includes:

  1. Other people’s feelings  
  2. Getting along with others  
  3. Friendship problems  
  4. Gender stereotypes  

Later in the spring term we will begin our work on safety and the changing body. This includes: 

  1. Communicating with adults.  
  2. People who help to keep us safe. Making a call to the emergency services.
  3. Road safety  
  4. Safety with medicines  
  5. Difference between secrets and surprises. 
  6. Appropriate contact  
  7. My private parts are private.  
  8. Personal boundaries

In PE, we will be covering a variety of units which practice different skills. We will be working on team building and working together. We will use a combination of apparatus, equipment and just the movement of our bodies to keep our bodies fit and healthy. 

Summer term: 

In Maths we will be exploring multiplication and division (groups of 2, 5, and 10), fractions (whole, half and quarters), position and directions, money and time. We will also use our prior learning to build onto place value within 100. 

In English, our fiction texts this term are ‘The Day Louis Got Eaten’ by John Fardell, ‘Trust Me Mum’ by Angela McAllister and Traction Man by Mini Grey. Our Non-fiction text is ‘What Do You Do With a Tail Like This?’ by Robin page and Steve Jenkins. 

In Science, one of our units this term is animals, including humans. We will be taught how to:

  • Identify and name a variety of common animals including fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals.
  • Identify and name a variety of common animals that are carnivores, herbivores and omnivores, and describe and compare the structure of these animals.
  • Identify, name, draw and label the basic parts of the human body and say which part is associated with each sense.
  • Notice that animals, including humans, have offspring which grow into adults.
  • Find out about and describe the basic needs of animals, including humans, for survival.
  • Describe the importance for humans of exercise, eating the right amounts of different types of food, and hygiene. 

In Science we will also be looking at living things and their habitats. We will be taught how to:

  • Explore and compare the differences between things that are living, dead and things that have never been alive.
  • Identify that most living things live in habitats to which they are suited. Describe how different habitats provide for the basic needs of different kinds of animals and plants, and how they are adapted to each other.
  • Identify and name a variety of plants and animals in their habitats, including micro-habitats.
  • Describe how animals obtain their food from plants and other animals, using the idea of a simple food chain, and identify and name different sources of food. 

We will also be talking part in our Ocean Curriculum Week. 

In Art, we will be exploring the sculptures of local artist Barbara Hepworth. During this unit we will be creating our own clay sculptures using pinch pots

In DT our focus this term is Food Technology, and we will be creating our own bread rolls in an interesting shape. 

In Music, we will be exploring structure and pitch, Magical Musical Aquarium and Travel Trains. 

In History, we will be learning about local explorers, in particular Sir Francis Drake. 

In Geography, we will be describing the physical features of beaches, cliffs and coasts. We will be exploring key human features of cities and towns. Finally, we will be compare features of our local area to a small area within a non-EU country (Plymouth UK vs Plymouth America).  

In RE, this term we will be asking: Who do Christians say made the world? How should we care for the world and for others, and why does it matter?  

In PSHE, This term we will begin by delving into our citizenship unit. This includes:

  1. Rules  
  2. Similar yet different  
  3. Belonging  
  4. Job roles in the community  
  5. Our school environment.  
  6. Our local environment.  

Later in the term we will be looking at economic wellbeing. This includes: 

  1. Money 
  2. Needs and wants  
  3. Looking after money  
  4. Banks and building societies 
  5. Jobs  
  6. Transition lesson (old class before new class day  

Meet the team

Mrs Claire Hardisty

Mrs Claire Hardisty

Headteacher/ Designated Safeguarding Lead
Mrs Emma Mantell

Mrs Emma Mantell

Acting Deputy Head Teacher/Foundation Stage Manager / KS1 Head of Department/ Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead
Miss Emma Harris

Miss Emma Harris

Miss Emily Trevarthen

Miss Emily Trevarthen

Mrs Nikki Gummow

Mrs Nikki Gummow

Y1 & 2 Speech & Language Teaching Assistant
Mrs Sharon Nye

Mrs Sharon Nye

Teaching Assistant, Mealtime Assistant
Mrs Yasmine Tebbutt

Mrs Yasmine Tebbutt

Teaching Assistant
Mrs Sarah Allen

Mrs Sarah Allen

Higher Level Teaching Assistant
How can we help?

If there's anything else you'd like to know or need guidance with, we're here.

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