Home Page


Our topic overview

Times updated again on Tuesday 15th March

Parents evening times:


I have tried to get everyone in their first slot but it's not always possible, some times are very popular!


If your child's name isn't there please let me know.





Tuesday 29th

Thursday 31st










Charlie H























Google Classroom


Chestnut's Google classroom us up and running and ready for you all to access.


To access it, follow these steps:


1)      Sign in to a Google account – this preferably will be the child’s e-mail account, this way when you log into the Google Classroom then any work, comments etc. will come up as being from your child. Alternatively - you can sign up using a parent e-mail account.

2) Go to Google classroom (you can find it in the nine dot menu at the top right of a Google page or can just search Google classrooms)


3) Enter the class code – qrzqkbb


4) Say hello and start looking around the classroom :)


If you need anything, just e-mail on


School closure Friday 18th February - please hold tight I am just arranging for a Google classroom for us and joining instructions and then I will put up some bits for you to be doing at home :) Should hopefully be up by 9am.


Alex Walker



We've been learning all about Ashford Hill and comparing it to Kabuwambo, and area in Mityana, Uganda.


Kabuwambo is our partner school and we have been lucky enough to touch and explore lots of Ugandan objects from the school and the surrounding area. Mr Dixon has been to the school, so after we had decided what we thought all the objects were, he came and explained to us what they were, how they were made, what they were used for etc.


We've also been lucky enough to have Reverand Dodie come in, a lovely and charismatic lady who works in the schools in that area and this area, helping to booster the link between them. She has taught us all about the school and the children who go there, shown us lots of pictures, told us stories about them and has done some lovely work with the children. Hopefully she is coming back in for a third time to let the children taste some Ugandan food!


We will be going for a walk around Ashford Hill soon to explore the local area and compare the human and phsyical geography of the two areas. Please look out for a letter asking for helpers!



Reminder: please ensure your child has a PE kit in school every day, we have PE with Mr Miller on Wednesdays and Friday with myself. Please make sure they have shorts as well as tracksuit bottoms, and if your girls are wearing tights - some socks as well.




A Keelie (performance track).mp3

Some parents have asked about daily routines to help prepare their children for the day ahead - this is what our timetable looks like (most of the time!)

17th October


And I thought I was doing so well 🙈 sorry I completely forgot to put up topic and homework letters! If you have already completed or started a topic homework we would love to see them in school, if you haven't - please don't worry about starting one it's completely my fault. I will put up a topic letter this week and a homework letter for next half term :) Happy Weekend all.


Mr Walker




15th October


It has been another busy week in Chestnut! We have started with our new phonics scheme - Read Write Inc - and we have already had lots of great feedback from the children and parents across Willow, Chestnut and Maple. If you weren't able to come to the meetings i will put up the slides and some information soon in a new phonics page.


So far the children have been working in small groups with myself, Mrs Gundry, Mrs PW and Mrs Walker learning sounds and practising spellings with those sounds. Each group has its own dedicated teaching area in the school which allows us to have small group sizes and a great learning environment for each group to learn at their own pace and with adult support. Next week we will be doing some more assessment so that we are able to group the children again for after half term. At this point we will be starting the book based lessons.


This will be the biggest change for you in supporting your childrens' learning - each group will operate on a 3 day or 5 day cycle. Please ensure their book bags are in school every day with their reading book in - they will be given a new reading book every 3 or 5 days which supports the learning they are doing in school. They will be working on a reading book in school, a writing book in school and the book bag book which will all support the learning of a particular sound. They will keep that book for the 3 or 5 days so that they can build up fluency in reading and practise that new sound as well as build their comprehension.


All year 2 children will be taking the statutory phonics screening check in December and the Year 1 children in the summer term. This is an assessment I will do with them and is very informal for them (they enjoy coming out to do some word reading) and is based on using their phonics to read 40 nonsense words to show their phonics. Read Write Inc is going to be excellent in helping the children prepare for this and prepare for becoming fluent readers and proficient writers as they grow through their education :)


In maths we have been focusing on finding one more and one less than a number up to 20 in Year 1, and 2 more and less than a number up to 100 in year 2. We have also been using = to balance number facts up to 10 or 20 and use numicon a lot to help support this learning. They have been finding some great numbers sentences such as 4+3=5+2 :)


Lost property is growing and there are many items that have been there for a long time!! It is all un-named, I will leave it out at parents evenings and then at the end of half term will donate any leftovers to the PTA. Please continue to name their clothing and keep an eye out for stray bits of other childrens' clothing that may make it into their bags!


Look forward to seeing you all next on Tuesday and Thursday, if you haven't received a time yet, please send in your form and I will ensure you get a time.


Mr Walker





1st October


The children have been fantastic this week - we have changed the classroom to have more tables and chairs so that all can be sitting at a table for whole class lessons. The Year 1s are still getting free play and learning through the resources around the classroom but have been joining the Year 2 children for most of the morning and some of the afternoon as well, and they have really enjoyed learning all together :)


They have been great with the changes this week has brought and we are so lucky for the adults that work in the school who have been helping in Chestnut this week - Mrs Gundry, Mrs PW, Miss Smythe - we have a great team.


In maths we have been focussing on numbers - up to 20 for some, up to 50 for most Year 1 children and up to 100 for the Year 2s. They have been getting better at reading them and writing them, ordering numbers that are in the wrong order, finding missing numbers, and some have been finding missing numbers on number lines which have the 2, 5 and 10 times table on forwards and backwards.


Any help you can give them at home to help reinforce this would be great for your children :)


Our phonics is transition to Read Write Inc as of next week. We will be focussing on the 'nk' sound for the first two days and then the children will be going off into groups from Wednesday with children from Chestnut and Maple to be taught the sounds at the level appropriate to them. I will put up some more information about Read Write Inc soon.


In science they have learnt about habitats and the places that different animals live and done some lovely work around that, we started on carnivores, herbivores and omnivores this week and will keep along those lines next week - some of the children bring some great knowledge with them!


Hope you all have a lovely weekend,

Mr Walker




23rd September


Are there any parents who might be able to help us out with an afternoon or a morning of their time? We would love to be able to have more children going out to read with an adult if possible.


The children are settling well into routine now and have been learning very well, Mrs Gundry and I have both been impressed with their effort in their work over the last few days especially :)


The Year 2s have settled into a full morning timetable as well as a lesson each afternoon with some self-initiated learning time with the resources in the classroom.


The Year 1 children are starting off the morning with an adult led session, having some self-initiated learning during the morning and then another adult led session at the end of the morning. They have started joining the rest of Chestnut and Maple class outside for break times now too. Then the Year 1s are also having an adult led session in the afternoon followed by some more self-initiated learning time with the Year 2 children.


We will be starting a new phonics scheme very shortly - Read Write Inc. - and I will update you a little on that soon as it will be different to how we are working now. We will be able to give you books and learning to do at home that will much better support their learning in school and will hopefully lead to even better reading and writing!


Thank you to those who have been patient with the slightly longer wait for books to be changed, we are all hands on deck at the moment with lots of staff illness so we are working as hard as we can to keep up with everything we would like to be able to do.


Hope you're all well,

Many thanks,

Mr Walker



17th September


What a busy day, sorry that the spellings weren't stuck in but they have the sheet ready to be stuck into the spellings section on this week of the planner! I have put them up on the spellings page.


We have been doing lots of place value in maths this week in Year 2 - if you get the change to do some money counting with them up to £1 then please do to reinforce it. Year 1 have been focussing on number formation and getting used to using the squared books which they have really enjoyed!


We will be doing phonics assessments with them all next week so that we can start to go off in groups for phonics.


On another note - please make sure that girls' hair is tied up if it is long enough to be tied up :)


Hope you all have a lovely weekend,

Kind regards,

Mr Walker



16th September


Reminder please for planners to be in on Fridays - we will be giving out spellings every Friday for them to practise at home, we will practise them over the course of the week in school as well to try and help those spellings sink in as much as possible! I have put some documents in the Spellings section which have some great ideas for practising spellings in more fun ways at home, we use lots of them in school :)


I will put up the spellings every week in that same folder for those who don't manage to get their planner into school on Fridays.


Some book bags have a keyring or something on to help them identify them - those children are finding it really easy to find their book bags amongst the others so it might be a nice thing for other children to have if they don't already so that they can also identify their bag more easily!


Mr Walker



14th September


Last call for school council posters tomorrow please as we are voting on Thursday :)


I have sent home Doodle Maths logins for Year 1 children - I had hoped to do the analysis with them myself but it takes a long time, which multiplied by 21 children is a really long time, so I have sent home a brief outline on how to do that with them - if you could read that please and set them up at some time it would be greatly appreciated.


They also have access to Doodle Tables through the subscription which is amazing for helping to teach their tables :)


Mr Walker



10th September


End of week 1 :) The children have been fantastic this week, settling in so well and jumping into the school routine head first and with a big smile.


The Year 2s had a busy morning as we move into next week and a more normal school routine. They have making two digit numbers with numicon and then writing them in numbers and words, doing some Guided Reading and making words in Phonics. The Year 1s were busy on a number hunt - practising their number formation on big numbers, then using their new maths books for the first time and continuing their number formation practice.


It is the farm trip on Monday - please don't forget outdoor clothing and suitable footwear, no school uniform necessary and they have wellies at the farm for us to use if we need them. Please prepare them for any weather and provide snack, lunch and water bottles. We are leaving by 9.


If your child has come home talking about school council, please help them to create a poster that they can put up around the school promoting themselves as school councillor and outlining some of their qualities that would help them in their role. This should be in early in the week or mid week. We will hold elections on Thursday.


The Year one children have their new planners home today with some reading books, please send them in whenever you have read those two books with them and we will change them and send new books home :)


I have also created Doodle Maths logins for the Year 1 children, I will complete the setup with them individually over the course of the week and send home their login details once I have done so.


Hope you all have a lovely weekend and the children have a good rest!


Mr Walker




Tuesday 7th September


It has been a lovely two days welcoming them in and getting them to know each other and our new classroom - they have settled in so nicely and have been getting on with their learning independently and with me. The Year Two children have been doing more formal learning with me, but lots of Year One children have been getting involved as I invite them to join in with the Year Two lessons if they would like to :)


I have been doing Maths, Spellings and Reading with the Year Twos who have been sent home with their new planners and two reading books. Please read as much as possible with them at home and send the books in to school in a bag to be changed when they are finished!


I will read with the Year One children over the next few days then send them home with some reading books. They will also receive a new planner for you to write in what they have been reading at home with you :)


There are three now-dry white t-shirts which I will leave out in the morning - they aren't named but hopefully you'll know which one is yours!


I have struggled with uploading photos we have been taking, but they will be up as soon as I can overcome our technical hitches!!


Mr Walker






Friday 3rd September


Hopefully all the children are excited to be coming back into school, and I'm sure some will be feeling a little nervous as well. The classroom will hopefully feel welcoming to both year groups - similar in style to the Willow classroom for the Year One children to transition easily into their new class with areas of learning and a timetable to help ease the Year Two children in to the new challenges they will encounter this year.


The two year groups have hardly mixed at all and so will need plenty of time to get used to each other and to make new friends, as well as to get used to being back in school again.


From Monday the two Year groups will have lots of similar aspects to their day, as well as some differences. When they come in to class this first Monday morning they will have resources out to be able to access, followed by a whole school assembly to welcome the children back and to introduce them to all of the adults in the school.


Year One: On a daily basis for the first two weeks, the two year groups will be joined together for some adult led learning for the first 20/30 minutes, at which point the Year One children will then have an hour of self initiated learning. In this time they will have access to resources that they can use to deepen their understanding of what was learnt in the adult-led time, as well as other resources for them to learn through in a similar way as in Reception class. Then the Year One children will have another session of adult-led learning with the Year Two children before lunch time. The Year One children will not be having break time with the rest of the school for the first few weeks to allow them to settle back in and enjoy full periods of self-initiated learning or play, but they will be having lunch time in the hall with the rest of the school and then outside with the rest of Chestnut and with Maple class. When appropriate for them, they will begin to have break time outside with the others. The afternoon will follow a similar format, beginning with some adult-led learning and then on to activities for them to do based around that topic.


Year Two: The Year two children will have more formal learning to do in the mornings, as well as a smaller amount of time to engage in child-led learning. After the adult-led session first thing in the morning, they will continue to work with an adult engaging in further activities based around what we covered together. This might be sitting and working together or accessing specific resources that will have been laid out for them. They will have break time outside with the rest of Year Two and the Year Three children of Maple class.


On Monday 13th September we will be going on a whole school trip to Farmer Gow's Farm in Faringdon. We will be going by coach and will definitely need parent helpers if you're available. More information will follow on this visit.


We will be doing whole class phonics for the first two weeks, then moving into groups with Maple class from Week 3. I will also read with each child in the first two weeks once they have had a chance to settle in to make sure they are on the correct reading book level, then they will be coming home with reading books and their planners weekly - we will hopefully be hosting an opportunity for you to come in and meet me and the staff of the class to hear all this in person and ask any questions.


Hopefully this makes sense, I only write so much so that those of you who are interested to know more can do so. Please come and speak to me if you have any questions at all - you can call the school to chat or make a meeting or just chat to me at drop off and pick up if it's a smaller question :)


Looking forward to seeing you all on Monday! Please send them in with water bottles and PE kits - water bottles will be sent home daily for washing.


Mr Walker




Some of the indoor and outdoor learning areas nearly ready :)

Saturday 28th August


Hello families of Chestnut :) hopefully you've all been having an amazing Summer and have been having fun getting new school shoes and uniform ready for their next year at school, or digging out things from older siblings to pass on! I know we have!


I didn't get to spend much time with our new class at the end of last term because of everything that prevented it from happening, so they didn't get much of a chance to spend time with me in their new classroom either. I really enjoyed the time we spent together and they gave me a glimpse of the fun we're going to have together next year!


Because of their lack of transition time, I will be putting some pictures and information up over the next week so that you can help get them prepared if you'd like to :)


I have spent lots of time getting the classroom and outdoor area ready for them with lots of new resources, resources that will help challenge the Year 2s and help settle the Year 1s into a new classroom which will hopefully feel very similar to what they have been used to so far.


Year One continue to need a large proportion of their time to be self-initiated learning - play, and a portion of their time to be adult-led learning; Year Two need a smaller proportion of their time to be self-initiated learning - play - and more time to be adult-led.


I have prepared resources and a timetable which will help both groups of children make as much progress as possible and have as much fun as possible.


The classroom is nearly ready - I will put up some photos on Tuesday, and some later in the week so that your children can have a look around before coming back. Hopefully they're as excited as I am to be getting back in :)


See you soon :)


Mr Walker