RSPB Big Schools’ Birdwatch is coming!

Are you joining in with the Big Schools’ Birdwatch project, early in the new year? It’s a fabulous conservation science scheme by the RSPB that’s perfect for inspiring youngsters, all over the UK!

Every year the Big Schools’ Birdwatch does great work in helping to track bird population numbers across the country.
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds is a charity whose scientific work is vital for looking after our feathered friends. The Big Schools’ Birdwatch is just one such initiative, and can be run with any age group of children.

All you have to do is spend one hour counting the most birds seen together, of each species that comes to your school. No special birdwatching knowledge is required! Registration for the event is open now, and final survey counts have to be submitted to the RSPB, online, by 22 February 2019.

RSPB Big Schools' Birdwatch 2019

Watch this handy video from the RSPB to what is like to take part in the Big Schools’ Birdwatch!

There are direct links with National Curriculum learning objectives, and lots of free resources are supplied by the RSPB to support the Birdwatch programme. Send off for your registration pack now, which includes a FREE bird identification poster.

RSPB Big Schools' Birdwatch 2019Plus, on the RSPB site, you can download easy-to-use counting sheets for pupils to record their bird count findings (find several versions, tailored for different age groups!), and why not try craft activities, bird-themed games to play, recipes for bird treats and more?! Click now to
make the most of all the downloads here.

And don’t forget too to watch out for the results of the Birdwatch later in the spring – if you’re registered to receive the newsletter, you’ll be notified of the results to follow up in class.
Be sure to plan now for this event in your lessons for the new term, and join the fun!

Vegetable Maths Masters Free App

Take a look at this recently launched maths learning app, which is called Vegetable Maths Masters, for school children!

Topmarks is excited to learn about this new app game, which has been funded by The British Psychological Society – teachers and parents are sure to enjoy this fun, positive resource with their young learners.

The game has been designed by a team including Dr Claire Farrow, Associate Professor at University of Aston, studying Child Eating Behaviour, with consultants in human computer interaction, teachers and parents.
It is primarily a maths app, but is structured around vegetables and using cheery, food-friendly characters.

Vegetable Maths Masters, learning app

Evidence from research studies showing methods for increased vegetable exposure and consumption in children was important when designing the game.
Topmarks believes the game will be useful in schools alongside healthy eating topic work, and also recommends it for home-learning use.

Vegetable Maths Masters, learning app

Vegetable Maths Masters has been attractively created with different levels for 3-7 year olds, using bright colours, lively characters, being reward-led and with simple-to-use, audio-enhanced animations.
It’s totally FREE to use and has no adverts or in-app purchases!

Vegetable Maths Masters, learning app

Subject areas include:
– counting up to 10, using a ‘ten frame’
– number formation for young pupils (though Topmarks would like to let teachers know that some of the number formations may not be their recognised way of teaching, eg number 5 and number 9).
– matching and addition problems, with pictorial representation
– fractions, and multiplication and division problems.

Vegetable Maths Masters, learning app

There is even the option to personalise the game, with settings to turn on and off certain vegetables that teachers or parents would like children to play with.

Available to play on iOs and Android – visit the website now to find out more and to download Vegetable Maths Masters!

World Space Week – 4-10 October 2018

Did you know that today is the start of World Space Week? Coinciding with the launch of the first space satellite, Sputnik 1, on 4 October 1957, World Space Week celebrates space science and its contribution to humanity.

World Space Week was first set up in 1999, by the UN General Assembly, and this year’s theme is ‘Space Unites The World’. Like previous years, there are thousands of events planned all over the world – wherever you are in space, it’s so easy to get involved!

World Space Week, 4-10 October 2018Find out more about events happening near you by clicking here, and look for some great ideas for organising your own WSW fun, as well!
You can make the most of a large number of handy teacher guides too.

And for starters, don’t forget that Topmarks has a fun interactive learning game, ideal for your young learners – it’s called Blast Off!
It’s for 5 to 8 year olds and it’s designed to help children identify and work with two digit numbers.Blast Off mental maths learning game for 5-8 year olds

It’s tablet-friendly, as well as being great for interactive whiteboard use in the classroom. There are four game modes, each with multiple choice oral questions and fully randomised to allow repeat playing.
The first pair of games are Find a Number, for finding the ‘Direct’ (finding a specific number) and ‘In Between’ (finding a number between two given numbers).

Blast Off mental maths learning game for 5-8 year olds, by Topmarks

Other game modes are for Count on & Back… These make Topmarks’ Blast Off game useful for pupils learning some of the vocabulary of addition and subtraction.
Examples include ‘Count back four from twenty-seven’, ‘Count on five from sixty-one’, What is seven more than thirty-one?’ and ‘What is eight less than eighty-seven?’.

Blast Off mental maths learning game for 5-8 year olds, by Topmarks

Varying difficulty levels mean Blast Off is suitable for differentiation within age groups and, like all our own games, it is playable in full-screen mode by clicking on the full-screen icon on any screen.

Have a go today – and all this week – to especially remember World Space Week 2018, and remember to share how you get on on our social media channels: Facebook and Twitter.

Reading is fun! Teach Your Monster to Read

Special Offer! There’s a great promotion on for the learning app, Teach Your Monster to Read.

The team behind this super app game for helping children learn to read is having a promotion, as the app is now FREE for this week, from today until Sunday 30 Sept 2018. Yes, free, with nothing to pay after the initial download. (It’s not just a free trial!)

Teach Your Monster to Read app game, children's literacy

The game is BAFTA-nominated and has been played over over 60 million times, helping children learn to read worldwide. It was created by the Usborne Foundation, which is a charity whose mission is to help address issues of literacy and health by getting as many children reading as possible.

Teach Your Monster to Read app game, children's literacy

With one in five primary pupils in England leaving school without being able to read well, (according to The Reading Agency), Topmarks is right behind any learning resources to support literacy for young children.

Teach Your Monster to Read app, children's literacy

The app is available to play on iPad, iPhone, Android and Kindle Fire.
It perfectly complements different phonics schemes used in schools, with three game levels for differentiation and progression. Read more about what the game teaches on the game home page here.

Take a look from now until Sunday 30 Sept 2018 for your free download – it’ll stay free to play even after this time!