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Ballykeel Primary School & Nursery Unit

Year 1

Welcome to P1!

Our teachers are Mrs Carruthers, Mrs Henry and Mrs McKeegan. 

Our classroom assistants are Mrs McQuillan and Miss Anderson. 

April - June

It’s hard to believe that we’ve reached the Summer Term of Primary One! This term is always action-packed, so make sure you keep a look out for any seesaws or website updates informing you of upcoming events. It is going to be a very busy couple of months.

Our theme for this term is “Once Upon a Time”. We will be enjoying some much-loved fairytales with your child and having lots of fun with these! 

Once Upon a Time…

Our new theme is “Once Upon a Time”. We will be learning some of the traditional fairytales. Many important Literacy, Numeracy and World Around Us concepts can be taught through these. Of course, they are also lots of fun and very appealing for young children!

Enjoy the fairytales! Why not try out these fun ideas?

 - We’re sure your child would love to act out some of the fairytales – with a little imagination, you can quickly find some props and “costumes” – a lightweight scarf around the shoulders would make a simple Princess dress, and your child could decorate a cardboard crown. For the boys, they could make some chain mail from tinfoil and have a cardboard sword as they pretend to be a handsome Prince?

Get Crafty! Could your child design and make a fairytale castle out of cardboard boxes? This could provide hours of playtime fun!

We love Literacy!

We are really pleased with the progress the children have made with their reading throughout the year.

We will be looking at punctuation in the reading books over the next few weeks. Check your child understands the following symbols:

.  –      full stop

?   –      question mark

! –      exclamation mark

Mad about Maths

We will be learning to tell the time – we need to make sure Cinderella leaves the ball by 12 o’clock midnight!!

We will only be focusing on o’clock times. You could help your child learn to tell the time by talking about what they do at various times during the day (e.g. school starts at 9 o’clock) and by pointing out o’clock times on the clock

And finally…

Your child has worked hard throughout the year in Primary One, we have enjoyed teaching them and getting to know you too.

Keep practising some reading, writing and number work over the Summer months to help them get off to a good start in Primary Two! Best wishes!

February- March

It’s hard to believe your child is almost more than halfway through their year in Primary One!

We have really noticed how much the children have come along since they started school in September – their work is improving day by day. We’re sure you’re amazed at what they can do!

Thank you for all the effort you have put in at home and please continue to keep this up.

Old McDonald Had a Farm

Our theme until Easter is “Old McDonald had a farm”. We will be learning about the role of a farmer, baby animals and their mothers, where our food comes from and we will be looking out for signs of Spring!

A farmer came to talk to us and we learnt lots about the farm and even met some of his animals! Ask your child about this visit. Don’t forget to send in any farm toys you have at home- the children love setting these out for display in our classrooms.

We Love Literacy!

We are working on Grammar in P1.

This is what the children will be learning – it is really just the “first steps” of good grammar.

  • Holding a book correctly
  • Holding a pencil correctly
  • Knowing to start reading and writing from the left hand side
  • Correct letter formation
  • Putting a space between each word
  • Ensure the sentence makes sense
  • Understand what a full stop, question mark and exclamation mark means.

Mad about Maths

In Numeracy we will be learning to count and write the numbers 10 – 15. Help your child count forwards and backwards – they love to pretend a rocket is blasting off after zero!

If you are baking at home, get your child to help weigh out the ingredients – we have been doing this in school recently, using the words heavier and lighter.

We will be learning about money very soon. To give your child a head start, why not teach them to recognise each coin. However, we will only be using 1p coins to make our “purchases” in school.

** We would appreciate it if all parents could please send in ten 1p coins – watch out for the money bag to put these in. It is much more beneficial to use real coins when teaching money **

Have a lovely Easter Holiday!

Let’s hope the weather is good so the children can get outside and be active – too much screen time is not good for them!

Why not visit the park, fly a kite, go on a Spring walk and talk about what you see, wrap up warm and go on a trip to the beach, or get out the bicycles!


Happy New Year! We hope you all enjoyed your Christmas holidays and Santa came to the boys and girls!

Our theme until February half term is “Helping Hands”. We are going to be learning about people who help us. We will learn about the roles of a teacher, the school cook, a fire fighter, a doctor and nurse and the police. We will have some visitors in the classroom and we will act out the various roles at playtime.

Maybe you could point out some people who help in the community when you’re out and about with your child?

Reading is going well! We are very encouraged by the children’s progress, thank you for helping with this at home! 

Just keep practising at home each night. Make sure your child recognises the key words in each book e.g. and, a, the, is, it, had.

In Numeracy, we will be learning how to write the numbers 6 – 10. Again, we use the little rhymes to help the children remember the correct formation.

Keep practising these at home – we always say that practice makes perfect!

6 – down we go and make a loop, number 6 makes a hoop.

7 – across the sky and down from heaven, that’s the way we make a 7

8 – make a ‘s’ and do not wait, that’s the way we make an 8

9 – make a loop and then a line, that’s the way we make a 9

10 – first a one, then a zero, number 10 is our hero!

The Lending Library will resume again from Friday 12th January. Please ensure you send all Lending Library bags back into school the following Monday.


We are really into the swing of things in P1 now! We can’t believe we will soon be starting the countdown to Christmas!

This will be a busy half term for your child as we commence Jolly Phonics, reading books and begin to practise for the Christmas Nativity…

Jolly Phonics

Please give your child as much support as possible with Jolly Phonics. Knowing the sound each letter makes and being able to write it correctly is so important. Without learning these skills, your child will struggle with learning to read and write. Please check the newsletter for ideas and don’t forget to do the homeworks each night!

Reading Books

The children feel so “grown up” now they’ve got their reading books. Don’t forget the importance of hearing your child read every night – but also read some bedtime stories for enjoyment!


We have been learning the numbers 1-5 and are ready to move on to 6-10. Please keep practising 1-5 at home. We have been thinking about 2D shapes – circle, triangle, square and rectangle. Why not have a look for these around your house?

Christmas is coming!

It’s an exciting time of the year for the children!

Our Nativity this year is “A Miracle in Town”. All children will be taking part – either as a character, in the band, or in the choir. All parents and family members are invited to the performances on either the 12th or 13th of December. Please plan to attend – it will help you get into the festive spirit!

Why not write a letter to Santa at home – cutting toys out of catalogues is a great way of practising scissor skills!

Please see the dates for the diary below.

Sept – Oct

Ready for school!

Please ensure your child has the following items in school every day:

  • Coat
  • Lunch box with healthy morning snack, drink and packed lunch (if taking packed lunch in school)
  • Homework folder (when homeworks commence). These are purchased directly via the school.

Is my name written clearly on all of my clothing?


Remember to check Seesaw regularly for updates!


We would appreciate it if you could send in the following items as soon as possible:

 - one large box of tissues

- one large glue stick

- one large bottle of handwashing soap with a pump top


Our Theme

Our theme this half-term is A Time to Rhyme. The children will be learning lots of familiar nursery rhymes and many lessons will be based on these.

You can help at home by sending in any nursery rhyme books, DVDs, costumes, puppets or any items mentioned in the nursery rhymes.

The nursery rhymes we will be learning are as follows:

- Baa Baa Black Sheep                                   - Wee Willie Winkie

- Humpty Dumpty                                         - Twinkle Twinkle 

- Hickory Dickory                                          - Hey Diddle Diddle

- Incy Wincy Spider

They will also discuss and become more familiar with their own daily routines, both in school and at home, for example, time to get up, time to go to school, time to play, time for bed etc. Why not help your child by identifying and emphasising these significant times in their day?

We     love   Literacy

Your child will be learning how to write their name. Practise this at home. Please refer to your handwriting sheet (given out in June) for further guidance. Remember – no capital letters except for the first letter!!

We will be teaching the children to hold their pencil correctly – using “froggy legs”. Ask your teacher if you’re unsure what this means!

Every day in P1 we have a story time. Why not continue this routine at bed time… time for a story! This will help your child improve their concentration and prepare for learning to read.

Mad about Maths

From now until Halloween, maths activities will include sorting, sequencing, counting 1-5, recognising the numbers 1-5, writing the numbers 1-5 and making sets of 1-5 items. These will be taught through practical, fun activities.

Encourage your child to count in practical, everyday situations, for example, setting the table – how many forks do we need? At the supermarket you could ask your child to get you ___ apples etc. How about sorting the laundry? Shirts in one pile, socks in another pile etc.

Dates for the Diary

6th May                            School closed- May Day

24th May                          Summer Fair   

27th May                          School closed – Summer Bank Holiday 

28th May and 29th May      School Closed- Staff Training

31st May                           P1 Induction meeting for new P1 children. Current P1 children in at 11am.

20th and 21st June             P1 children finish early at 12.00pm for the new P1s coming 

28th June                          Last day- summer 



Latest Photographs



11th Apr 2024
Please take a look at our Term 3 newsletter. 
17th Nov 2023