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Special Valuable People ...Successful, Visionary and Proud

Year 2 Crew

Teacher: Mr J Fraser
Learning Coaches: Miss D Bow

Home Learning Knowledge Organiser

Summer Term:

Expeditionary Project Narrative


‘Where is home?’


In Summer 2020, the Year 2 Crew will be ‘Where is Home?’


We will have to answer the essential question:


How Important is a Home?


The Learning Targets for this project are:


  • I can explain which habitats are best suited to which animals
  • I can demonstrate what a lifecycle is using examples
  • I can define what a mini beast is and give examples
  • I can define and give examples of what a microhabitat is
  • I can explain why pollinators are important
  • I can increase biodiversity by designing a bug house
  • I can identify a range of wildflowers by using a key


Case Study 1:

We will start this project by discussing the question ‘What is a home?’ and think of a variety of examples of where we can live such as houses, bungalows, tents and caravans. We will then focus in more detail on homes not made by humans such as a: nest, shell, burrow, lair, den, dray, web, anthill, sett, cocoon, and hive. Further to this, we will explore homes we build but do not live in such as: aquariums, coops, hutches and stables.


Case Study 2:

Next we will look at animal habitats. This follows on from work in our previous project, however in this project we focus specifically on mini beasts and microhabitats. Children will look at a range of microhabitats, idejnfitiying the specific qualities, characteristics and attributes of each. They will then need to define what a microhabitat is, giving examples from their findings. Children should conclude that a microhabitat is a habitat which is small and which differs in character from some surrounding more extensive habitat. Examples could be; under logs, in long grass and in cracks or holes.


Case Study 3:

Having identified some microhabitats, children will begin to discover which mini beasts inhabit them. First they will identify minibeasts and discuss the question ‘What is a minibeast?’ Children will discover that Minibeasts are invertebrates – they are creatures without backbones. Examples they might consider are spiders, beetles, snails, worms, centipedes or any of the 25,000 different types of invertebrate living in the UK - 20,000 of which are types of insect. At the end of this element of the project children will be familiar with minibeasts and which habitats they inhabit.


Case Study 4:

Children will then look at the life cycle of butterflies and plants in the form of action research as they will have caterpillars in class and be propagating plants. Children will gain a good understanding and deep knowledge of the processes, reinforced heavily by direct involvement, first-hand observations and experiences.


Case Study 5:

Combining their knowledge from the previous elements of the projects, children will now what it takes to make a home for animals living in our local area as well as what food and conditions they require. Using this knowledge children will create a bug house to be placed in a suitable location to attract their chosen minibeast.


Case Study 6:

Children will consider the questions ‘What are pollinators?’ and ‘Are bees important?’. Focusing on bees, children will look at what job they do and how important that is. Having studied bees, children should be able to answer the questions posed, concluding that pollinators transport pollen which allows plants produce nuts and fruits that are essential components of a healthy diet - linking to our previous project.


Case Study 7:

Having discovered the importance of pollinators, children will look at how they can improve their local environment to cater for them. They will look to identify a range of local wildflowers and then sow some more in the currently bare areas around the school site. Whilst this won’t be quite be the end-point, it will be a small-scale legacy activity with a positive impact to local wildlife. This will pave the way for the final legacy outcome and endpoint of the project, detailed below.


The Presentation of Learning: Legacy outcome:

The children will create a living roof to go on top of the school bike shed. This large area is completely bare and covered in polycarbonate. However it hold the potential to become a living roof, providing several square meters of pollinator friendly plants and increasing our contortion to biodiversity.



English across the curriculum: Anchor text:

Our main anchor texts will be Meerkat Mail and The Flower. Meerkat Mail focuses on Sunny the meerkat. He lives with his enormous family in the Kalahari desert. They are all very close . . . so close, in fact, that one day Sunny decides he's had enough and packs his bags. We follow him on his journey to see if he can find a new home. The Flower is heavily linked to our legacy outcome. In the story Brigg discovers a book in the library labelled Do Not Read  and he cannot resist taking it home. In it, he comes upon pictures of bright, vibrant objects called flowers. He cannot find flowers anywhere in the city, but stumbles instead on a packet of seeds. This sets off a chain of events which bring about unexpected results, continuing to grow and bloom even after we have turned the last page.




Home Reading

All children will bring home a home reading book from our school library. Children will be given the opportunity to change their book when we listen to them read. However children can ask to change their book more frequently if required. It is important that you read with your child at least three times per week but preferably more. We strive to foster a love of reading in your child and you can support us by talking to them about their book and motivating them by listening to them read aloud.  


Your child will be given their weekly spelling list every Monday and a test will take place on Friday.


As well as ensuring your child learns their list, you can support their spelling understanding using Spelling Frame. Log-in cards have been given out to every child. Please access the website here:


NB: Please ensure children are only accessing Year 2 spellings.  


We follow a mastery maths programme and use the White Rose Planning resources. Children are supported in a variety of approaches to their maths work to ensure sound mathematical understanding. The approaches used are as follows: 

Concrete – children should have the opportunity to use concrete objects and manipulatives to help them understand what they are doing.

Pictorial – alongside concrete objects, children should use pictorial representations. These representations can then be used to help reason and solve problems.

Abstract – both concrete and pictorial representations should support children's understanding of abstract methods


An overview of the maths blocks can be downloaded at the bottom of this page. 


PE will take place on Wednesday afternoons. For this term children will be looking at badminton, gymnastics, basketball and cricket. Please ensure your child has their full PE kit in school as failure to provide a suitable kit may result in them being unable to partake in the lesson. 

Spring Term Knowledge Organiser & Project Map (downloads)

Maths Curriculum

Spring Term 


Expeditionary Project Narrative


What Does It Mean To Be Human?


In Spring 2020, the Year 2 Crew project was ‘What Does It Mean To Be Human?’


We had to answer the essential question:


‘Are we more than just a body?’


The Learning Targets for this project were:


  • I recognise changes in animals and humans as they grow
  • I can describe the basic needs of animals and humans
  • I can define what a balanced diet means
  • I can design a healthy packed lunch
  • I can explain how the human body processes food
  • I can give examples to show why hygiene is important
  • I can explain how significant people from the past have changed our world
  • I can compare significant individuals and identify their qualities



Case Study 1:

We started this project by looking at animals and humans when they are young and when they are adults. We asked the question ‘Do animals and humans change as they grow?’ Children studied some animals in close detail, including a frog and a chicken. They were able to list many differences between adults and their young, noticing that animals grow and change. We were able to recognise that we too have changed after looking at photographs of ourselves as babies. Children concluded from this first element of our project that animals and humans change as they grow and were able to support this concept with examples from their learning.


Case Study 2:

Following on from recognising that animals and humans change as they grow, children were prompted to think about the basic needs of both. We looked at the MRS GREN model (Movement, Respiration, Sensitivity, Growth, Reproduction, Excretion and Nutrition), defining each of the terms and discussing examples. We then applied these to animals, thinking of an example for each of the basic needs. Children found that all of the animals they could think of showed all of the basic needs. We then looked at ourselves and considered if we have different basic needs. Having studied the basic needs of both humans and animals, the children came to the realisation that we have the same needs and without all of them we would not survive.


Case Study 3:

Having understood our basic needs, we looked at our need for nutrition and considered the question ‘What is a balanced diet?’. A visitor came to school to talk to use about different food types. For many children this was a good opportunity to understand the concept of balancing a diet. Many had thought that only eating fruit and vegetables would be best. However, by using a large-scale model of the Eatwell Plate, children were able to discuss each food type and examples in depth, realising that they were all important to us. Following this session we investigated and followed the route of our food, asking ‘Where does our food go?’. We were able to explain how our body takes what it needs from our balanced diet with the waste being excreted. As a final task to this element of the project children designed a health packed lunch, aiming to balance the lunch in the same proportions of the Eatwell Plate.


Case Study 4:

For our next key questions we asked ‘Why is hygiene important?’ and ‘Why do we wash our hands?’ Children observed microscope images of bacteria on surfaces. We discussed how these are invisible to us with our own eyes. Children thought of examples of contaminates they get on their hands which are more obvious, such as jam from eating toast, mud from playing outside and paint during art in class. We recognised that if our hands our obviously dirty then we would naturally go and wash them. We then drew comparisons that bacteria should be treated in the same way. We wouldn’t want mud or paint going into our body and neither do we want bacteria which we recognised can harm us. This messaged was further reinforced due to the COVID19 pandemic, which occurred towards the end of our project.


Case Study 5:

Linking to the work on hygiene and keeping healthy, we looked at the work of Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole. One of the misconceptions addressed during this phase of the project was that all historical people either lived at the same time or knew each other. We created a large-scale class timeline to plot the various individuals we would be studying and highlight their separations and overlaps. Children were able to realise that Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole had similar qualities and beliefs, but were pioneers in their own right. Linking to our own local history, we asked ‘Why did Florence Nightingale receive a letter from Liverpool?’ Children studied copies of the original letter alongside other sources. They discovered that William Rathebone wrote to Florence Nightingale and she replied, encouraging him to start what is now known as district nursing. This local link was an enjoyable discovery for the class.


Case Study 6:

The study of pioneers continued as we looked at both the Wright brothers and Amelia Earhart, comparing and contrasting their pioneering spirit in the field of aviation. This aspect of the project focused heavily on the mindset, beliefs and personal qualities of the pioneers. We looked at the Wright Brother’s inspiration to fly having received a flying toy gift from their father. This gave them the intrinsic motivation to create their own aircraft and we saw their many attempts, their resilience and determination to be successful and their ultimate reward. Similarly, we saw the same qualities in Amelia Earhart. Her steadfast determination and bravery to fly solo across the Atlantic was inspirational to us as a crew. The children recognised that this came at great cost to Amelia, as she knew it was an incredible risk and ultimately it took her life as she disappeared over the Atlantic attempting to fly around the world. This however showed the children that she had such a strong belief in what she was doing that she was willing to push the boundaries and go where nobody had gone before.



Case Study 7:

Reflecting on that pioneering spirit, we next looked closer to home at the life of Maurice Egerton, who lived in the mansion house at Tatton Park, Cheshire. The children discovered that he had links with the Wright brothers, having purchased one of their Wright Flyers. They also discovered that his pioneering spirit saw him buy one of the first motorcars, own the latest technology, such as a camera and travel the world - eventually building a castle in Kenya and living there. Sadly, due to COVID19, we were unable to visit Tatton Park and inspect Lord Egerton’s collection of artefacts collected from his travels across the globe. We were able to identify the mutual qualities shared by Florence Nightingale, Mary Seacole, William Rathbone, the Wright brothers, Maurice Egerton and Amelia Earhart. We recognised that we have many of these qualities and can all be change makers in this world. Unfortunately we were unable to share our ideas for change before the COVID19 lockdown.


Link to Global goals:

The children recognised that pioneers share many qualities. They are determined, brave, show grit and are steadfast in achieving their aims. They are intrinsically motivated, stirred up to make a difference and unwilling to yield to barriers instead pushing forward and overcoming them. This was an inspiration to the children, who recognised that they too can change our world by harnessing those qualities.


Whilst not shared with the children, this extract from Ulysses by Alfred Lord Tennyson captures the unyielding spirit at the heart of this project:


It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,

And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.

Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'

We are not now that strength which in old days

Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;

One equal temper of heroic hearts,

Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.


The Presentation of Learning:

The children were due to present their learning in a whole-school and parent presentation assembly to showcase their work. This was also to recognise, honour and celebrate the lives of the pioneers  they had studied.


English across the curriculum: Anchor text:

Our main anchor texts were Rosie Revere, Engineer, Taking Flight: How the Wright Brothers Conquered the Skies and Amelia Earhart (Little People, BIG DREAMS). The books were inspirational to the class and, though written as a story, they were all based on real pioneering people.




Autumn Term


Expeditionary Project Narrative


Our Wonderful World


In Autumn 2019, the Year 2 Crew project was ‘Our Wonderful World’


We had to answer the essential question:


‘Where does the sea end and the land begin?’


The Learning Targets for this project were:


  • I can explain what a hemisphere is
  • I know how many oceans there are and can name them
  • I can name each continent and some of the countries within it
  • I can define and identify what a human and physical feature is
  • I can give reasons why some animals and plants survive in each continent
  • I can explain what climate is by using examples around the world
  • I can compare our climate and geographical features with another city



Case Study 1:

We began the project by looking a globe, recognising how it represented Earth and observing what we could see. We split our model in half, along the equator. In doing this we were able to discuss and define the term ‘hemisphere’, recognising that our spherical earth can be split into two hemispheres - the northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere. We familiarised ourselves with north and south, learning the correct orientation of the globe.


Case Study 2:

Next we looked at the makeup of our globe and used satellite images. We recognised that there are areas of land and sea. This helped us to define the word ‘continent’, understanding that this was a mass of land. We looked at the seven continents using our globe and satellite images, observing their shape and colour. This made us ask questions about why some continents were coloured green, some were white, others were sandy and some a mixture. Using a Venn diagram and linking to our previous learning, we recognised that the continents were located in the northern and southern hemispheres and that some stretched across both. During this work we were also able to name the seven oceans and discuss the continents they separate.


Case Study 3

Having identified the different continents, many were curious to know which countries were within them. We learnt how to use atlases to locate continents, including looking at the oceans which separate them, and then identify countries named within continents. Children were able to make sense of which countries were in the same continent with many realising that they had been on holiday to different placed but remained within Europe. We were then able to discuss how our island is part of Europe, even though we had said continents were large pieces of land. We looked at other continents which are not one land mass and discusses why islands might be grouped or joined to a near land mass to form a continent. We used cutouts of the continents to explore the idea that they were all once one land mass and are now separate. This learning opportunity also allowed us to talk about leaving the European Union and the misconception that it meant we would no longer be part of the continent of Europe.


Case Study 4

Having used satellite images in our previous learning, we looked at aerial photographs of areas around the world, including physical and human landmarks. Children then focused in on the UK and their own local area. Through studying these, we were able to explore human and physical features. Children looked at a variety of human and physical features and were then able to define what those terms meant as well as giving examples, using images to support their explanations. Children found studying our local area, identifying familiar human and physical features, as well as their own homes, particularly enjoyable. This learning enabled children to see the value in aerial photographs as well as understand that the word ‘aerial’ can be defined as meaning 'from the sky’.


Case Study 5

Looking at the satellite images using our project board, we revisited our previous learning when we noticed that the continents were different colours (case study 2). Children spent time discussing the reasons behind this. Many we able to agree that white continents must have snow, green continents probably have grass and trees and sandy colour continents might be desert or mud. Some were a mixture of these. This prompted us to think about why that is the case. Why are some continents covered in snow and others are sandy? Children also noticed that snow appeared at the very top and bottom of our globe and sandy coloured continents were across the middle, between the two hemispheres. This prompted the questions: Is there a pattern? Children spent time, using books, atlases and the National Geographic website and resources researching each continents and concluded that different continents have different temperatures and types of weather. Some are hot, some very cold, some rainy, some a mixture and others steady. Following this we began to explore the term ‘climate’. Some children asked if climate was the weather. We concluded that ‘climate’ was indeed the weather but over a long period of time and that it would take several years to discover the climate of an area. We looked at climate zones, acknowledging that they are like bands across our globe. As the bands run horizontally, this means that some continents have several climate zones, explaining why they could be green, rainy and humid in one area but dry and sandy in another. Children reflected on our own climate and we explored the term ‘temperate’. We then went on to discover that climate zones have names: temperate, polar and topical. When looking at a map we discorded that because the bands run horizontally, we can have the same climate as places such as New York, even though it is many miles away.


Case Study 6

Next children began to make sense of why certain animals and plants survive in different climate zones. Children studied a selection of animals and plants, observing their features and needs. They then used a map and plotted pictures of different animals and plants across the world. Once the animals were on the map, children were asked if they could see any similarities. Many children noticed how animals and plants are adapted to the climate they are in. To look at this in more detail, we thought about different conditions in our own country and how our plants and animals are suited to them. Children looked at woodland, coastal, urban and pond habitats recognising, for example, that plants in sandy habitats have strong roots to anchor themselves in the sand, which is easily blown away,. They also have stronger leaves , protection and can cope with dry conditions just like other plants around the globe in similar conditions, such as a cactus. Children recognised that if we moved animals and plants to different climates, it would be unlikely that they would survive.


Case Study 7

In the final stages of our project we thought about what different places around the world would feel like. Children used their knowledge to think what they would take to a topical location, a polar location or a temperate location. This useful element of the project highlighted other misconceptions, such as that it can’t rain and remain warm. Many children recognised that in the UK it is usually cold when it rains. We therefore talked about humidity, and explored how in some areas of our planet we would need to wear very lightweight clothes but still have a hat to protect us from rain and hot midday sun. Children compared our climate, animals and plants with those in Johannesburg, where we have a link with a primary school. Children used their knowledge of they own country, climate, animals and plants to write an information text


Link to Global goals:

The children recognised the diverse world they live in, having not thought about how climates, animals and plants can vary across continents. It widened the horizon of many children, who thought that our own climate, landscape, plants and animals were replicated across the globe. It also enabled them to see the challenges different citizens face when living in extreme climates.


The Presentation of Learning:

The children created in information leaflet titled ‘Introducing Liverpool’. The leaflet talked about our global position, the climate we live in and the animals and plants we are familiar with. They asked questions about the differences found in South Africa and sent their leaflets to our partner school in Johannesburg.


English across the curriculum: Anchor text:

Our main anchor text was Around The World in Eighty Days (children's edition) based on the 1872 Jules Verne novel and the real round-the-world travels of the adventurer William Perry Fogg. This was a highly engaging text as children followed Phileas Fogg on his journey around the globe. The text was invaluable as Mr Fogg journeyed to the very continents we were studying. He too noted the animals, plants and climate he experienced as well as famous landmarks and geographical features. This book bolstered the children knowledge, allowed them to connect with the text and make links to their learning. They we’re highly amused by the character of Phileas Fogg and his enthusiasm to prove his friends wrong and travel the globe in 80 days. Fogg ended his trip in Liverpool and this too was something which delighted our class. This book allowed children to be able to write a news report, adventure narrative and information text.