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Year 2

  • April – Month of the Military Child

    April is the Month of the Military Child and each year we love taking the time to celebrate our military children here at Merry Hill. Service children can face challenges with parents in the armed forces. Yet these children are also an amazing asset to families, schools and the local community. The Month of the Military Child helps us remember this and helps us celebrate their achievements.


    Did you know the official flower of the military child is the dandelion because its seeds are blown far and wide by the wind but it will always plant roots and blossom wherever it lands?


    The children celebrate ‘Purple Up Day’ every April; purple is a colour used to represent all military services and shows unity with each other. This day is to celebrate the wonderful contributions our military children make to our community, bringing experiences from around the world. We celebrate our military children and thank them for their service.

    Purple Up Day at Merry Hill this year is on Friday 26th April –  Please can all children come to school wearing a purple accessory on this day such as a hair ribbon, socks, cardigan or t-shirt.

  • Summer Term Begins!

    Welcome back to all our Year two pupils and families! We hope you thoroughly enjoyed the Easter holidays; we know the children did from their many stories of adventures they have had.

    As usual, we began the week with our Mindful Monday lesson. Our Artist this term is Edgar Degas whose main focus in his paintings are people and figures. So, we started the week with a whole class follow along to sketching a person’s figure. We had to use our light sketching lines and think about the proportions of the body parts. Lots of us found it funny when our teacher drew a figure with a large head and tiny hands, observing how the figure was not in proportion! This helped us when we began our own drawings.

    On Mondays our focus for assembly is diversity. This week we had a visit from our local Rabbi who told us all about the festival of Passover. We enjoyed learning about the story of Moses and the Pharaoh and were encouraged to be active participants by being Pharaoh’s voice “No, no no, I will not let you go!” The children had the opportunity to try matzah bread at the end of assembly and some shared their own experiences of celebrating Passover too:

    We have also been super busy with our Geography learning.  Our topic this term is about a non-European country! We have been learning about the continent of Africa, in particular the country Kenya. We began by learning some key facts about Kenya, and designed boarding passes with some key information.

    Maths, maths and more maths! Wow we have been busy mathematicians this week! We sliced into fractions and begun to dabble in multiplication. We have been focusing a lot on equal and unequal  groups. This has really supported us in our fraction lessons to understand that when we find a fraction of an amount the amount needs to be shared equally into groups. We have learnt about the numerator and the denominator, further understanding how this helps us to find a fraction of an amount. Take a look at the teacher example and some work below:

    How to help at home

    • Take some chalk outside, lie down and draw around your figure! What do you notice? Are the arms always longer than the hips?
    • Investigate the culture of Kenya. You could visit a local library and take out some books to learn more about the country.
    • Practice, practice, practice. Encourage your child to use fractions when cutting up food eg:- a pizza or a cake. Moving them on, can your child recall how to find 1/2, 1/3 or 1/4 of a number? Give them a question like, what is 1/3 of 15? Remind them to use their sharing circles and share equally.
  • Guacamole Dip!

    In Design Technology this half term we have been evaluating, designing and making our own guacamole dip! The children have been such active and curious learners during these sessions. Plus we as teachers have been really impressed with the teamwork and independence that the children have shown.

    We started by thinking about dips in general; what dips are, when do we eat them, what do we eat them with and what the children’s favourite dips are.

    We focused on guacamole and discussed its origins and what it is made of. We learnt that it is a Mexican snack made mainly of avocados and includes tomatoes, lime and coriander.

    Our word aware word was evaluate-deciding if something has been done in the best way and wondering if it can be improved?   In colour groups the children had the opportunity to use their senses to evaluate the shop bought dip and filled in an evaluation grid, commenting on appearance, texture, smell and taste (if children wanted to try it!).

    During our next lesson we revisited the Eatwell plate from the Autumn term and thought about where the ingredients for guacamole belonged. We concluded that this was a a healthy snack to eat!

    In Week 3 the children learnt how to make  guacamole by following a simple recipe. Guacamole recipe

    First hygiene rules were covered; pushing sleeves up, washing hands, tying long hair back, wiping down surfaces. Then it was modelled to the children how to follow the recipe using the ingredients and how to use tools and utensils safely.  Then it was over to the children!

    Each colour group worked as a team following the method; the children allocated the different jobs between them and produced a great result. Again they had the opportunity to evaluate their team’s guacamole and compare it to the shop bought version. The last question they were asked was ‘What would you add to improve it?’ The children then had to work as a team to design their own guacamole, enhanced by other ingredients. They chose peppers, lemon juice, cheese, carrots, cucumber etc…

    The following week they repeated the above process and added their enhancements!

    We discussed their immediate reactions,

    “I’m not sure it tasted as good as last week’s” 

    “It is yummy”

    “The onion is very strong!”

    “I liked it better, plain”

    Next week we will evaluate our enhanced guacamole further.

    Which one will they like best??


    How you can help at home.

    Encourage your child to help in the kitchen- stirring, mashing, cutting with cutlery knife.

    Compare and contrast different flavours of food.

    Evaluate the same types of food eg: breakfast cereals, types of apple.

    Have a go at making guacamole at home!


  • Science in Year 2

    Happy Science Week! This week we have been celebrating Science, started by an assembly lead by Miss Honnor our Science lead, which got us excited about our scientific learning! This year the focus is on Science and the passing of time, which ties in well with our Year 2 topic of  plants and growing. 

    For more information about British Science week please see the following link.

    At the beginning of the new half term we started by thinking about what we already know about plants and also what we would like to know. The children remembered lots of knowledge from their prior learning in Reception and Year 1! They also thought about great questions they could ask as we work through the topic:

    • “How does a plant move?”   
    • “How many days does a seed take to grow?”   
    • Which plant can grow to a grown up, the fastest?” 
    • “Can plants grow with electric light?”                                                                                                                                                  The children went onto compare seeds and bulbs, using magnifying glasses. They drew what they could see and wrote about the similarities and differences.

    Together the children learnt about what is inside a seed or bulb and our new Word Aware word was GERMINATION, The children watched a video all about germination; when a plant starts to grow, and they studied the changes that take place.

    The children then planted their own lettuce seeds and we have been watching their progress carefully everyday as we go past them in the courtyard!

    Last week the children made predictions about what seeds need to germinate. They brainstormed in teams and discussed ideas such as sunlight, soil, water and air. They then decided to test this by removing one of these elements. They learnt about the importance of having a control group as a comparison.

    This week the children have focused on writing down their findings in a conclusion

    The children found this experiment fascinating. What brilliant scientists we have in Year 2!

    How you can help at home:

    Encourage your child to get out into the garden or go out for a walk- what plants can they see?

    Dissect some seeds (ie apple/orange pips) by pulling them apart- can your child remember the names of the different parts?

    Choose plants to grow together from a seed or a bulb. Watch their progress!

    Encourage your child to use the associated language with growing:
    ie germination, seed, bulb, soil, sunlight, air, water, predict, conclusion.

    Can they remember all the different parts of a plant?

  • World Book Day!

    Today was a book-packed day! What a marvellous day celebrating World Book Day! Ahead of the day, the children have been sending in photos of themselves reading in unique places. Take a look below:

    We began our day with an assembly as a whole school! We were informed about what World Book Day is for and a story was read to us, with some surprise guests! The teachers were acting out The Enormous Turnip!

    After that, we spent parts of the day doing some lovely activities. We had some time to share our favourite book we brought in with the class. Our teachers shared their favourite book with us too! We paired up and read it to each other:

    Then we took part in some more exciting activities, such as a Book Scavenger Hunt, Book Reviews and Book Hunts! We really enjoyed our World Book Day!

    How to help at home:

    • Continue to read with your children every day.
    •  Visit the local library.
    • Use your World Book Day voucher at your bookstore!


  • Year 2 Maths

    The children have returned to school on great form after half term, ready to learn! In Maths this week we  started to work on written addition methods. As calculations increase in difficulty and become harder to solve mentally, it is important for children to be able to record these.

    We started the week by revisiting re-balancing and ‘think 10’ to solve calculations by playing the ‘Last Number Standing’. Here the children had to choose two numbers and decide which strategy would be best to solve it. The children had great fun while they consolidated their learning!

    In following lessons the children practised adding two-numbers using concrete resources and pictorial representations.

    Using tens and ones (dienes) on a place-value grid really helped make the calculation become visual.

    The children then drew the calculation onto a place-value grid and from here completed the calculation, recording this in their books. Miss Stringer and Mrs Nicoll were very impressed with this work!


    The next stage will be re-grouping with ones (where the ones equal a number 10 or more) and we are confident the children will continue to make super progress with this.

    What fantastic mathematicians we have in Year 2!

    How you can support at home:

    Ask your child what they have been learning in Maths this week.

    Ask them to solve the following calculations:

    20 + 6 =

    22 + 23 =

    34 + 25 =

    55+ 36 =

    37 +24 =
    1. Ask your child to write down the calculation (on paper with pencil/felt-tip/coloured pencil, on a whiteboard, in chalk outside…)

    2. Encourage your child to draw a simple place value grid:

                                           T                                                     O



    3. Then record the tens and ones in the correct columns (a long line to show a ’10’ and dots for the ones,

    4. Then calculate the total!

    5. Record the answer on your original written calculation.

    Well done for being a Maths superstar! (We would love to see this work on Seesaw). 

  • How to Catch a Star

    In English we have been learning about instructions.

    We were very surprised when we came in from playtime to see a trail of glitter through the corridor and in to our classroom, we didn’t know where it could have come from! Our teachers then found a letter on each of their chairs. We were very excited to read the letter. This is what it said:


    We immediately decided that we could help the boy find the star. We had lots of our own ideas as to where the star might be and how we could find it.

    Then our teachers taught us some instructions to find a star. We acted out the instructions carefully, making sure to use our talk for writing actions for the time words.

    Here are some pictures of us following the instruction: ‘Next find a good place to hide’.

    We were amazed to come in the next day and find the star had been caught whilst we all slept!

    After this we worked together in our classes to change the instructions. This week we have been writing them. Have a look at some of our super work.

    How to support at home 

    • Look for instructions around your home e.g. recipes, in games, Lego building.
    • Follow a recipe to bake something.
    • Write your own instructions to make or do something, share them on Seesaw for your friends to see.
  • English – Calligrams

    For the last week, year two have been learning all about calligrams. We learnt that a calligram is a set of words arranged in a way that represent its meaning. We began by practising calligram words. We thought hard about how to draw some words, take a look below at some of our wonderful  work.

    After that, we studied some WOW features of a calligram poem. We recapped expanded noun phrases and used them to describe our chosen rainforest animal. We really enjoyed choosing our rainforest animals as we have been learning about them in Science and Geography. We remembered that an expanded noun phrase is when we use an adjective + adjective + noun to create fantastic description. We also learnt about similes for the first time this week! We learnt a simile is a phrase that compares something to something else using the words like or as. We had to match the right similes together, ensuring they make sense! Then, we wrote our own similes about our rainforest animal.

    Finally, we worked hard to put all of our new learning together. We knew our calligram had to be in the shape of our rainforest animal. We had great fun! Take a look at some of our work:

    How to help at home

    • Visit your local library and pick up some poetry books to read.
    • Can you spot any similes in the books you are reading at home?
    • Can you create some similes, for example ‘my bedroom is as messy as a __________ ‘.
  • Art in Year 2- Andy Goldsworthy

    As a school we have all enjoyed learning about Andy Goldsworthy, an artist who loves working with nature. Year 2 have really been inspired by his work.

    Andy Goldsworthy image

    Here is a power point all about his life with incredible images of his art:

    As we viewed his work we asked the following questions:
    – What do you notice?
    – What materials does the artist use?
    – Are the materials man-made or natural?

    We started by making our own nature art during mini explorers in the forest area. We took a long piece of sugar paper with a strip of double sided tape on and collected natural objects found in the forest. We then took them back to the classroom and drew one chosen item in great detail. The results were impressive:

    The following week we returned to the forest to choose another natural item, such as a leaf, feather, twig or stone. This time we divided our sketch book into four and used different media; charcoal, pastels, pencil and pencil crayon and watercolour paint to draw the same object. We worked hard  to create  highly detailed images- this activity was quite challenging! What super results:


    Andy Goldsworthy loves to create leaf mandalas

    Leaf Mandelas by Andy Goldsworthy

    Our Word Aware word was ‘symmetry‘ meaning ‘the same on both sides’. The children worked in colour teams in the forest to create their own mandelas and thought about the colours and symmetry Andy Goldsworthy used in his work. It was quite a windy day but the children coped amazingly! They were proud of their achievements through teamwork.

    In the next lesson the children chose a leaf from the forest then returned to the classroom and cut it in half. Their task was to draw the other half, symmetrically. They carefully used their observations skills. Wow!!

    We are now working on natural weaving. The children have created frames in which to weave natural materials. We are all really looking forward to returning to the forest next week to continue creating natural artwork in the style of Andy Goldsworthy.

    How you can support at home

    Go for a walk in the woods and create family nature art. Perhaps a leaf mandala, also using twigs and stones, thinking about the symmetry.

    Encourage the use of different media when drawing.

    Create your own natural paintbrush!

  • Year 2 Word detectives!

    The children looked splendiferous as they entered school today! They all really enjoyed becoming word detectives to find out the meaning of new words as well as celebrating the range of words we knew. Some children celebrated words in their home language, others chose words from their favourite sport and some from books, conversation and films! We had words ranging from hibernation  to antique and extraordinary to  bookworm. 

    We enjoyed making our own word searches, bookmarks and even had time for a game of hangman. We enjoyed collecting all these new words.

    Here are some pictures of us:

    We want our children and learning community to be excited about words, to celebrate new words learnt and be curious to find out the meaning of unknown words. Learning words is really important; the more words your child knows, the more it will help them at school. By working in partnership, the children here at Merry Hill will become skilled word learners. Below are some exciting ideas to try at home.

    How you can help at home: 

    Cooking – Cooking together involves co-operation, planning, reading, listening and lots of vocabulary – all skills you need to succeed in school, as well as being great skills for life.

    Get crafty – Crafting and/or constructing with your child provides lots of time for talking. Try and listen more than talk, and comment more than question. This website will give you further ideas, but you can do great things with bricks or by cutting up old cereal packets.

    Reading and talking – Reading books to your child is a great way to develop your child’s language. Books expose children to more complex language. For children who are learning to read, hearing stories can make them more enjoyable. For confident readers talk about what you have read together to further develop their understanding.

    Get your child involved in planning parties or trips – this involves lots of talking, thinking and planning. ‘Who will be coming? What will you need to do? What food will you need? What can you do before? Who needs to do what?’ and maybe even ‘ How can we keep costs down?’

    Play word games – see the attachment within Merry Hill Matters this week

    Thank you to you all for your hard work in putting costumes together- we all had such a brilliant, word-rich day! 

  • Super Scientists!

    This term our science topic is Animals, including humans and looking at growth over time. We started by thinking about ourselves and the lifecycle of a human. We brought in photos of ourselves as babies and  really enjoyed looking at a gallery and working out who was who! The children then thought about the word grow and what it means (to increase in size and develop in ability). They described themselves to a partner thinking about how  they have stayed the same (i.e. eye colour) and how they have changed (i.e. grown taller, read a book). 

    We watched this clip:

    We also focused on the word lifecycle and that it means the process that living things go through from the beginning of their life until their death.

    We  identified  and named the different stages in the human timeline – baby-toddler-child-teenager-adult.

    Following this, we thought about needs and wants and what the difference is between the two. As the children discussed this together they realised that most things suggested are actually things we want…we can survive without them! 


    We thought about the word survive in greater depth and identified the things that we as humans need to survive:

    • water
    • air
    • food

    The children made posters to explain what animals need to survive


    This week we have found out that all animals need food but different animals need different types of food. 

    Together we recapped the meanings of herbivore, carnivore and omnivore.

    The children researched some animals and created their own animal fact file focusing on their needs and how to look after them. 

    The children worked really hard and created super fact files that they shared with their peers. What brilliant scientists we have in Year 2!






  • Geography

    This term in Geography we will be looking at the UK, focusing more on its position and context within the world. Our main focus will be the world’s rainforests; their locality, climate and layers.

    After studying the UK and surrounding seas last term, this term we are now focusing on the world map! We began by recapping what we know about the world map, we sung our 7 continents song and enjoyed a retrieval  quiz about the UK’s surrounding seas.

    This week’s lesson took us swimming through the oceans of the world! We had our own blank map and an atlas. We were shown how to use an atlas, using non-fiction features like the contents page! When we found the correct page, we used the atlas to locate the oceans of the world. We needed some help in understanding that the world is not flat like our books and that there is only one Pacific Ocean even though it is on our maps twice!

    Next week we will be learning all about the equator and adding it to our own maps!

    How to help at home:

    • Use an atlas at home or online maps to locate the different oceans of the world. Can your child explain why it is an ocean and not a sea?
    • What does climate mean? What countries do you already know that have different climates around the world?
    • We will be learning about the climate near the equator, can you collect as many facts as you can about this?