Deer Class Blog

Welcome to Deer Class 2021/2022


Teacher:          Kirsty

Supporting Staff:  Charlotte, Chris, Lynne, and and Hannah

Our topic this half term is: Food Glorious Food
In Deer Class we are going to explore this theme from several angles. In Independent Living we will be making snacks which are (extra) cold and snacks and drinks which are quite warm (even hot). In our story, ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, we will very definitely experiment with different temperatures, and thicknesses and gloopinesses of porridge. Finally, in the run-up to Christmas we will be making special seasonal food treats.

Week ended 17.12.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include
Well the Deer class Christmas tree is magnificent, if I say so myself! What is so special about it is that the decorations are hand made by the students plus they also all contributed to getting the decorations ONTO the tree. The Santas and Reindeers looked fab while on the tree and then later this week were filled with sweets and sold at the school Christmas Fayre.

The paper-cut snowflakes on our windows were good for practicing scissor skills and adding glitter was a very enjoyable sensory experience. Painting doesn’t always have to be brushed onto paper; actually Kitana LOVED having paint brushed onto her hands in the hand-print wreath art lesson.

We did some more smashing using mallets to crush boiled sweets to make our stained glass Christmas biscuits (and they tasted good!)

Wows for this week include:  
Whole class Wow: Everyone joined in the actions in our PE Parachute game (even Marek who had missed a few lessons).
Marek : for using his speaking voice and saying, ‘Sit down’
Emmanuel: for being an ace Christmas tree decorator and for drawing baubles for the class Christmas cards
Sam: for using bingo dobbers to mark-make for the Christmas card baubles
James: for using a pencil make great swishy patterns in the shaving foam (in our shaving foam marbling art lesson)
Tim: For excellent and polite manners when he met Santa in his grotto.
James: for using his speaking voice and saying, ‘Santa’ when he looked at the Santa’s grotto photos on the big screen. He was so happy and smiling lots when he said ‘Santa’. 🙂

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: Excellent all round participation in lessons.


Teacher:          Kirsty

Support Staff:  Charlotte, Chris, Lynne, and (job sharing) Jane and Hannah

Our topic this half term is: Food Glorious Food
In Deer Class we are going to explore this theme from several angles. In Independent Living we will be making snacks which are (extra) cold and snacks and drinks which are quite warm (even hot). In our story, ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, we will very definitely experiment with different temperatures, and thicknesses and gloopinesses of porridge. Finally, in the run-up to Christmas we will be making special seasonal food treats.

Week ended 03.12.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include
This week has been so busy that we don’t seem to have as many photos as usual.
One big thing that we did this week was to film our song for the Christmas production. It’s top secret so you’ll just have to wait to watch it! We did have LOTS of fun filming it and EVERYONE laughed lots and lots so we do hope you will too.
In Maths we have really tried to build on our knowledge of shapes; yes, they are everywhere- Forest school, the classroom, the dinner hall and hula hoops in the sports hall too.
We also had a FABULOUS trip out to CAST in Doncaster where we saw the absolutely brilliant production of Aladdin.
I would strongly recommend it to everyone. Just ask Tim; his face was full of happiness and pure rapture for so much of the show. We all loved it!

Wows for this week include:  
– Kitana for saying (vocalising) ‘Go, go, go!’ while on the way back from the toilet.
– Sam for independently going to the construction corner and starting to play with lego.
– Emmanuel for keeping his reindeer antlers on for all of our filming for the Christmas Production
– Tim for showing so much pleasure while watching the Pantomime on our school trip
– EVERYONE for doing so well ; coping with the change of place, lighting and sounds, while on the Pantomime theatre trip.

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: settling back into school well, using your fork at dinner time and showing good choosing skills


Week ended 26.11.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:
Celebrations are great! This week in Deer Class staff and students enjoyed celebrating team member Chris’s birthday. We did the full party experience; singing Happy Birthday, blowing out candles. That was tricky as they were LED tea lights but Tim did have a go at puffing them out. Then we played pass the parcel. This party was a lesson drawing form our LIFE curriculum: learning about different ages and celebrations of milestones. In pass the parcel the students learned rules (stopping when the music stopped and passing again when it started again). They also started to show anticipation of the music stopping and then went onto the exploration of unwrapping the next paper layer to discover what treat was hidden between the wrapper layers. The parcel had MANY layers so everyone had at least three goes of unwrapping!
After pass the parcel we had sharing of birthday cake and choosing between different types of party food. We went old school and had party rings and pink wafers. Yet again it has been excellent to make full use of our theme for the half term which is Food Glorious Food.
But to stay healthy we need activity too so our Monday PE lesson is always a welcome one. Some great skittles photos this week.

Wows for this week include:  
– Tim for saying out loud,‘ Do work’. This was him getting it reinforced that he needs to first do his work before then getting a reward of a sensory activity that he especially likes.
– Sam for eating his dinner after several days of not eating any food at school.
– Emmanuel for using his own initiative and going to find his apron ready for working with ooblek (It’s messy and he knows it!)

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: excellent work in both Maths and English plus developing her appropriate socialising skills with peers.


Week ended 19.11.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:
Deer Class students enjoy being happy. Our Monday music lessons are making not only our students but also the class staff team very happy. I think the main reason for this is that it is quite wonderful to be able to see the progress that the children are making. This is a lesson where, not only do they use instruments individually, but they also get a spot in the Solo Spot. It is great to see them overcome shyness to then blossom into enjoying their spot in the limelight…and we’re only on week three of this half term!
On Wednesday we looked at photos of ourselves smiling and laughing, listened to Emmanuel’s favourite Happy song and then used slices of fruit and vegetables to add colourful smiles and happy eyes to our photographs.
Finally, to celebrate having full TacPac resources we have had, not one but two, TacPac sessions. We are doing TacPac Set 2. More information about TacPac is here.

Wows for this week include:  
– James for his fantastic solo in Music lesson: especially for being able to respond to a change in tempo of the backing track.
– Emmanuel for even better communicating needing the toilet. Today he not only used symbol but he also said, ‘WeeWee’. And while he was at it he also responded vocally to the question, ‘What’s the weather, Sunny or Cloudy?’ Emmanuel said, ‘Cloudy’.
– Sam for coming to circle after only one verbal prompt. Plus for enthusiastic participation in PE (he was our PE Star of the Week)
– Kitana for the most wonderful expression of happiness during the TacPac session and also her enthusiastic responding/ communicating with her TacPac adult partner (Charlotte)

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: for progressing his ability to play with cause and effect toys and for coming up with his OWN idea of a new way to play with this toy independently. PLUS for joining in with snack time – handling toast slices.



Week ended 12.11.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:
Independent Living lessons this week involved using a range of utensils (including mallets, spoons and tongs). This week we made Strawberry and Mint Granitas (AKA Slush Puppies). Our lesson included Maths: counting (strawberries and ice cubes) and also Science (experiencing different temperatures). Later in the week we started our Goldilocks Sensory  Story and this also included Maths: to count out spoons full of oats to make porridge and later counting frozen strawberries to add to the bears’ porridge… because of course it was too hot!

Wows for this week include:  
– Emmanuel for communicating and for using the toilets so well. Another BIG step!
– Tim for moving onto more advanced Makaton signing: ‘Good Morning’ and ‘More please’.
– Tim for doing good counting, in several lessons across the curriculum
– Sam for joining in with snack time in a brilliant way! Sam tolerated the toast photo and also a slice of toast being by him at snack time. Then Sam handled and explored the toast. He touched it to his lips; didn’t eat it but didn’t push it away either. We are celebrating Sam joining in. J

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: excellent work in Maths (counting) and PE (following instructions).



Week ended 05.11.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:
I am having to write this blog post a bit early so, truthfully, I am reporting back on our first three days of Autumn 2 half term. So, the first three days have been really great! We started our Monday music lessons where we are getting used to being in a solo spot and to performing for our fellow class members and this went even better than I had expected. Deer class students have been doing a lot of listening.
Listening to different sounds and percussion instruments in our Phase 1 Phonics lessons. Also listening to instructions (going to put cookies on our reward charts, coming to collect toast and fruit at snack time and also getting shoes and coats on at playtime) and in our Science lessons (where we are focusing on weather and seasonal changes) we will also be listening to the crunch of dry leaves and crispy Winter twigs.

Our whole class Wow moment this week was our PE lesson (again!)
This week we: walked to the hall: opened the parachute: got everyone to stand in a circle holding it and off we went! If you want to do this at home (with a big blanket or sheet) here is the music that we use to get us started.
Next the students were great at sitting on the bench as the skittles were set up. This time we used BIG skittles and a BIG sensory ball (with bells in).
They were all brilliant at taking turns, following rules, and getting excited about their throws and the skittles that they knocked down. A final shout-out goes to Tim who was especially good at helping to follow instructions to pack away the skittles.

Deer Class Star of the Week is:

For: settling back into school well, coping with change in the dinner hall and excellent work in Maths (problem solving)


Our topic this half term is: There’s no place like home
In Deer Class we are going to use our sensory story to learn about different homes. Our story is called ‘When we lived in Uncle’s hat’. In our story there are a range of characters and we also have interesting sounds, lights, textures and smells and objects that are in many different types of home. This story is quite surreal and full of surprises.

Week ended 08.10.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:

Our science lesson this week was a big hit (with not only students but staff too). Huge thanks to Eagle Class teacher, Christina, for sourcing such excellent magnetic construction kits and lending them to us.  Emmanuel showed us how much he enjoys symmetry (see photo), Tim really explored the possibilities of magnets, joining them even at interesting angles. Kitana, engaged really well and was much more involved with separating magnets especially when she had to dig for them in a tub of rice.

Reading has also been a feature of this week. There has been a really good interest and appreciation of books and we are now matching pictures to pictures in books plus exploring all aspects; the pages, the textures and also showing awareness of writing as part of a book.

Our whole class Wow moment this week was our PE lesson
This week we incorporated travel training ( walking to the PE hall ). Next, we had a successful parachute game out in the playground. It was very exciting that the students were able to show learning of the game and transfer it to a different location. Then we had an outstanding (if I say so myself!) game of skittles. It was a huge Wow to see how everyone understood the rules, remembered the process from previous weeks and so were able to complete three rounds (two balls each time) with just verbal prompts and no additional physical assistance.

Deer Class Star of the Week is:
Emmanuel has worked well across the board. He has shown an interest in letters wherever they are; books, the big board (IAW) and logos on clothing. He has tried hard to listen to sounds and recognize them (Phonics). He has concentrated to match numbers 1-4 and finally he has got better communicating so that he has been getting to and using the toilet more successfully.


Some highlights from our learning this week include:

What a varied and interesting week this has been! On Tuesday we started a new chapter of our Sensory Story and so had lots of new materials and props to handle. On Thursday it was a school ‘Dark Day’ so we didn’t use any technology in class for the whole day. Our music of the day on a Thursday is some Jazz music so staff member Charlotte suggested that we do our own Jazz instead. Out of the music cupboard came the chime bars and wow lots of smiles too! Another Dark Day lesson was painting using paired magnets to mix coloured paints on paper plates. Big well done to Emmanuel for showing interest and persisting until he could do it independently.

Our Wow moments this week were: -James for being willing to use headphones and the sensory sock to help him regulate his senses. Plus for showing such delight with the sounds he made using the chime bars. -Tim for fantastic listening and the best ever recognition and matching of percussion sounds. -Emmanuel for excellent use of symbols to communicate -Kitana for independently walking to collect her toast at snack time -Sam for successfully matching photos of his classmates…multiple times!

Deer Class Star of the Week is: SAM TAYLOR Sam has loved earning his cookie rewards this week and gives us a big smile when he is awarded one. He has continued to enjoy books (especially Pass the Jam Jim) and has shared space with Lynn and allowed her to read the story with him several times this week.


Week ended 01.10.21
Some highlights from our learning this week include:

-In our Phonics lessons we have been working on recognising environmental sounds. On Monday we listened to Fire Engines and also the iphone ring tone and looked at photos to match the sounds to and on Thursday we had a fantastic Sound Walk in our classroom. The students first worked with some of our musical percussion instruments and then went round the classroom tapping different surfaces to listen to the sounds that cushions, chairs, cupboards and even patting your tummy can make.
In Independent Living Skills we made milk shakes using chocolate milk powder and Strawberry milk powder. This lesson involves choosing flavours, type of beater and also using some technology. Last week we problem solved to work out which buttons to press to operate the electric mixer and this week we will use an electric tin opener to open tins of fruit to blend into our milk.

Our Wow moments this week were:
-Emmanuel for showing us all his fine motor skills while writing and tracing some of his favourite words on the glass board. And also for singing along and using his voice. Especially good as it was the ‘I’m so Happy Song’!
-Marek for starting to use both hands while weaving wool fibres on a peg loom.
-Tim for independently following instruction to go and put his cookies on his reward chart.
– Kitana for independently doing some actions in Rhythm and Action Song sessions and for persevering to get her wellies on properly.
-Sam for using a new and even higher stacking cup set.

Deer Class Star of the Week is:
James has used lots of words this week, GoodBye, Bye Bye, Hello  and Cookie. He especially says Cookie when he has done great work and is awarded a cookie. James had also worked exceptionally well in Rhythm and Action Songs and also in Maths where he has persevered with problem solving when using sensory construction toys


Some highlights from our learning this week include:

-In Sensory Story sessions students are now looking at photo cards and matching them to the story props. This is all part of starting to match objects to images (Maths) and also as the cards have words on it is also showing students that letters and words are important and have meaning too (English).
– This week Deer class students have shown us that they love action songs. Today, as well as our usual ones, James started singing the BINGO one so now we have more actions to do!
It is so good when students are able to communicate and feel understood.

In Deer Class the teaching team believe that, ‘A day without laughter is a day wasted’, and I have to say that one of the ways that we make it a safe, warm and happy place to learn is by sharing happy and fun moments.

If you fancy a chuckle then here’s a classic MUPPETS LAUGHING SONG


Our Wow moments this week were:

-Kitana who used her voice and said, ‘Beep Beep’ in Outdoor Learning. Staff member, Charlotte, was pulling her in the buggy; Charlotte said ‘Choo Choo’ and Kitana replied ‘Beep Beep’.

-Emmanuel for regularly using symbols for toilet, drink and a big WOW for matching the days of the week symbols (from choice of two)

-Marek for showing us his technology skills. He showed us that he knew how to get off the writing app on the IAW and back to Internet and YouTube.

-James for his excellent independent mark making in Art. He used different brushes, pipettes and sponges and he did this independently and with intention.

-Sam for stacking a different set of stacking cups.


Deer Class Star of the Week is:
Tim has worked well this week and has earned the most cookies. To get his cookies he has; followed two step instructions, showed that he understands the routine of our sensory story sessions, and worked well in almost all lessons. He has also used his Makaton signing for Good Morning 3 days in a row.

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