Stop Motion Animation

For the last two weeks, the children in year 2 have been creating their own stop motion animation movies about the four seasons. The children needed to make a movie to submit to the film festival that is happening across schools.

The children have worked in groups completely independently to plan, create and edit their movie.

Please watch our movies here and leave us comments to let us know how we did:

HPS Bakery – Part 3

The doors of the HPS bakery opened for the final time this week when we made our Chinese Bao.


In China they are very creative with their bread and often shape it to look like an animal! Find our recipe here > Bunny Bao recipe

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The skill we were focusing on today was shaping the bread, so we chose between make rabbit or hedgehog bao.

We started off by counting how many of us there were so that we could separate the dough evenly.  We realised that when there was an even number of us we could cut the dough into halves and quarters to make the right amount of pieces.  Where there was an odd number of us we had to think more carefully about whether we could separate the dough into thirds.

We rolled the dough into a long sausage and then cutting it up into the right number of equal pieces.


The Bao dough was a very different texture than the other doughs we made, it was soft and smooth and very shiny.  The recipe had more oil in it than the other breads which meant it didn’t stick to the table at all and was really easy to work with.

To make our animal shapes the first thing we needed to do was roll the dough into a ball.  We did this by placing the dough in one palm, and then gently rolling our other palm round and round over the top of the dough.

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The next stage was to gently roll the dough into a short sausage shape .  We had to be really gentle with the dough so that we didn’t flatten it.

Once we had achieved a smooth oval shape it was time to form the creatures face.  We used our thumb and forefinger to gently pinch the dough to create a point for the nose.  We spent time pinching and gently pressing the dough into the right shape.

Next was the technical bit, where we used some scissors to snip ears for the rabbit, or spikes for the hedgehog!  We had to be very careful when using the scissors as the blades were sharp.

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Finally it was time to make the eyes.  We did this by covering a pencil with tin foil and then pressing it gently into the dough.  We then placed our creatures onto a baking tray and carefully put them into a hot oven for between 8-12 minutes.

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Thank you for reading all about our week of baking at HPS – we would love to know about breads you have seen, tasted and made before!

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HPS Bakery – Part 2

The HPS bakery has been busy again, this time making a traditional Jewish bread from Israel called Challah, which is eaten for Shabbat.


The recipe for the Challah bread was quite different to the traditional English loaf, as it is an enriched dough with eggs and honey in it.  We also added some dried fruits to make it extra delicious.  Find our recipe here > Challah Bread recipe

The skill we were focusing on today was kneading, which means we had to work the dough with our hands to help combine all the ingredients together and get the gluten working.  Gluten is like a glue that holds all the ingredients together and it makes bread light and fluffy.  We watched a video about different kneading techniques and then tried them out on our Challah. Watch the video here >


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The Challah was a very sticky dough, so we covered the table in flour to stop the dough from sticking.


Kneading was really hard work, we could really feel our muscles working!


After we had kneaded the dough we put it back into the bread machine to keep it warm so the dough would rise.  Then we discussed which of the kneading methods had been our favourite.  Most of us liked having a go at throwing the dough onto the table and then folding it – it helped us to get all our aggression out!


Miss Wilson’s favourite technique was where you push and stretch the dough, then fold it back over and do it again.

Rolling the dough from one hand to the other was the least favourite technique as it was so fast!

At the end of the day we all came together to braid the Challah which is traditionally done in Jewish families.  Braiding the Challah with 4 strands is meant to symbolise North, South, East and West uniting together.  It was much trickier to do that it seemed!

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Jewish families would traditionally break off a piece of the dough, either before or after baking and then burn this separately as a reminder of their belief in God.

HPS Bakery – Part 1

Here at HPS we have been learning all about foods from around the globe for our theme entitled ‘World Kitchen’.

To kick start our topic we read a book called ‘Everybody Bakes Bread’ (by Norah Dooley) about people from all over the world living together in one neighbourhood, baking all different kinds of bread.

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This got us thinking about the different breads we have seen, baked and tasted before – and got us in the mood to bake some more!

The first bread we decided to make was a traditional English loaf with half white flour and half wholemeal flour.  The skill that we were focusing on today was reading and following a recipe.  Click here for our recipe > Traditional white bread recipe

We learnt that this is very important when baking, as the ingredients have to be added one at a time and in exactly the right quantity.  We weighed and measured all of the ingredients and put them into a bread machine to do the kneading and proving for us.  For the flour we used some digital scales to weigh 500g.  We know that liquid is measured in litres (l) and millilitres (ml) so we used a measuring jug to measure 200ml of warm water.  The amount of yeast, salt and sugar that we needed was so small that instead of using the weighing scales we used a teaspoon or tablespoon to measure the correct amount.

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Once we had all of the ingredients ready we put them into the bread machine one by one, following the order of the recipe.  We learnt that with bread making it is important to wake up the yeast with some warm water before adding it to the dry ingredients.  This helps the yeast to get working, creating some gas and air bubbles to make our bread soft, light and spongy.

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After 5 minutes the machine had combined the ingredients to make a ball of dough.  It looked very small so we weren’t sure whether it would feed us all!

When we checked on the dough at lunch time it had doubled in size, and instead of only filling the machine to half way – it was bursting over the top of the tin and forcing the lid of the machine open!


By the end of the day the bread had finished baking, and was a lovely golden brown colour on the crusty outside.  We all got to take home a piece to try.

Keep reading to hear about our baking experiences – the HPS bakery will be baking a Jewish Challah bread next…