Merlins Class is led by the very capable and experienced, Mrs Millgate, who has taught at Belchamp for over 20 years. She is supported by our teaching assistant, Mrs Murray, and headteacher, Mrs O’Connell, who also forms part of the Key Stage 2 teaching team. Mrs Millgate is a loyal advocate of the school having sent all three of her own children to Belchamp. She is now committed to doing the very best for the children that follow in their footsteps.
In Merlin Class, we try to create a relaxed and happy atmosphere in which children can develop at a pace which is right for them and gain the confidence to grow. We work hard to instil a love of books in this class by reading a wide range of books including authors like Roald Dahl and J K Rowling, but we also enjoy reading the news and finding out information in non-fictions texts.
Mrs Millgate is just as enthusiastic about maths. She is Belchamp’s resident maths expert and ambassador for the subject across the school. By the end of their time in Merlin class, we hope that the children will share her love for the subject and will have grown in confidence and skill. We devote a significant amount of time to securing our written methods, acquiring times table knowledge and learning to problem solve, building on the foundations established lower down the school.
In this class, we try to help the children develop a sense of independence and give them responsibilities which they carry out on a daily basis. These include everything from tidying, taking care of our library books to looking after the class pet, Oswald. We have high expectations of the children but try to provide a gentle transition from Key Stage 1.
It is in Merlin Class, that children start to be nominated as prefects. Children are chosen not for their academic achievement, but rather their behaviour and attitude to work. Prefects are children who follow our ‘Belchamp Bees’ and tackle their schoolwork conscientiously. Our prefects have special privileges and responsibilities; they often represent our school and greet visitors to our classroom.
In order to encourage good behaviour, we have a house points system. Children are rewarded for their achievements, both academically and socially and for sport-based activities. Their houses give them a sense of belonging and help them to appreciate the importance of team work. By the end of their time in Merlin Class we hope they leave us as confident, capable individuals ready for the challenges of Kestrel Class.