A sunny start to Term 5

The children have all returned well-rested, enthusiastic and cheerful after the Easter break, especially as the weather has improved. It has been wonderful to hear about all their adventures over the holidays and how many different places have been visited. I am especially delighted with the excellent homework that has been returned and I am so impressed with the children’s new knowledge and the effort put into their projects. There have been so many beautiful peices, it has been difficult to display them all but here are a few on display, making our classroom look even more colourful. Many children chose to do more than expected which is fantastic! I know that you all enjoyed the project and the freedom to choose which tasks to do. Great work year 4!

This week we have had two highights. Firstly, seeing Olympic Gold medalist, Lizzie Yarnold  at The Vine and secondly, discovering that eggs have been laid in Sophia’s bird box over the half term. We think they are Blue Tits and we are hoping that they will hatch. Very exciting!

This term’s learning promises to be equally exciting with plenty of outdoor learning opportunities.  In Literacy, we have embarked on a new journey with Edward Tulane and in Maths we are continuing our learning journey on decimals, relating these to money and measures, with Mr Field planning plenty of practical measuring activities. Mr Field will also be taking the children on a “journey” through North America during Geography lessons.

In Science, we are completing our investigations on Sound. This week we investigated how to change the pitch of a sound with hands-on enquiries and recorded our findings using the iPads.

In a few weeks, we will begin learning about living things and their habitats and are delighted to once again have the opportunity to attend Forest School to supplement our learning at school and carry out some important scientific research.

Reminders: Please have your PE kit in school every day and your instrument in on Mondays.

Spellings and times tables will once again be tested on Wednesdays.
As the weather is warm, please bring in a water bottle to keep in the classroom.

 

 

 

 

Springtime Adventures at Carroty Wood

What an active way to end Term 4 :The Sport Relief Walk and Carroty Wood!

After all the snow and ice, the sun finally came out to warmly greet us as we ventured to Carroty Wood for our exciting residential trip. Class 4 excitedly boarded the coach and headed off for their active adventure on Wednesday. The children happily played imaginative games in the woods, built dens and structures before having lunch together. It was wonderful to see how creative they can be, having the freedom to play and explore.

The afternoon commenced with the High Ropes and Low Ropes courses, with many children conquering their fear of heights and challenging themselves to have a go even when it looked too difficult. Resilience, encouragement and courage were demonstrated in abundance.

A special treat awaited us after swimming in the evening in the form of pizzas! Exhausted by the activities, we flopped into our beds and all slept soundly.

Thursday morning, we were challenged to work in teams to complete the Maze or the Mission Impossible before playing a game of Rounders. Before returning to school, we ate our packed lunches (made by the children) and reflected on the fun we had had together.

A memorable (muddy) experience for all!  Here are a few photos to enjoy;

WINTRY HOMEWORK

What a wintry week we are having! I hope that you have been enjoying some time having fun in the snow.  As we are surrounded by snow, your homework is snow themed. Please do at least two of the tasks ( or more). I look forward to seeing your creative responses. There is also a range of tasks on Mymaths set for you, so you have plenty to get on with when you  have had enough sledging or snowman building.

Click on the link below and you will see your homework choice board.

Class 4 Snow Homework

Meanwhile, stay warm and safe!

 

Year 4 continue to shine!

Welcome back after the half term break and an especially warm welcome to Miss Giles, who joins us for her teaching practice this term until Mr Field returns after Easter.

This week has been assessment week and the children have shown how much they have matured as learners; keen to show how they have progressed over the last three terms.

On Wednesday, we had a special treat (and a well-earned break after assessments) when Jo Fox from the UK SPACE AGENCY visited to teach us about the use of robotics in space, and in particular, missions to Mars.  We were delighted to be entertained by her NAO robot and even had a go at giving NAO an algorithm to instruct her to perform a sequence of actions. To our astonishment, our demonstration was interrupted by an incoming SKYPE call from the Space Agency needing us to help with their mission to Mars! We used our knowledge of co -ordinates to find a safe spot to land on the planet, negotiated our way through “Marsquakes”  to find evidence of life on Mars, and helped to construct safe housing pods.  Mission complete! Year 5 were even more fortunate to be able to attend a further workshop in which they built Mars Rovers. This was a real treat with lots of learning and promotion of future careers in the space industry. I am certain that many of the children watching this demonstration will indeed become engineers, programmers, and architects and work in this field in future, given their level of enthusiasm and engagement today.

Our next part of our blog is updating everyone on our Roman Day ( which feels like months ago ) and has been written by Eloise:

“Roman Day began when the whole class ( dressed as Romans) including Mr Field and Mrs Williams attended a workshop in the hall led by “Emma, the archaeologist”. We were plunged into a short episode of a Celt’s life and how the Romans impacted their way of life by bringing different foods from Italy and coins. We held a coin that was more than 2000 years old. After this we explored the lives of Julius Caesar, Boudicca, Claudius and Roman soldiers. Last, but not least, anyone who had not had a chance to act out a role was enlisted in the Roman army and re-enacted battle strategies. The Romans won of course! After the workshop, we continued our Roman day in the classroom investigating Roman numerals. Roman Day was amazing!” 

This term we will complete our adventures with Varjak in English, begin our unit of work on fractions and decimals in Maths. In Science, we explore Sound and in topic work, we learn more about Boudicca and the impact Romans had on Britain.

Plenty of fun and learning ahead. AND…. Carroty Wood!!

 

 

ALSO: Thank you for the wonderful homework !!!! The bird projects, ear models and sound poetry have been a pleasure to mark! Well done Class 4. You are so creative!

Lights, Camera, Action!

This term, Mr Field has been teaching Year 4 to use iPads and iMovie to create a variety of different movies. The children have been working fantastically in small groups, creatively planning their short films, writing scripts as well as acting and filming their work.

The children developed their own visual facts-files as well as making a silent video to help remember their times tables.  Most recently we have been looking at school etiquette and focused on creating a video on what to do and what not to do around the school. This was a unique opportunity for the children to demonstrate their acting skills while they temporally misbehaved in the classroom.

In maths, with Mr Field, children have been learning about lines of symmetry and how to reflect shapes on a grid, the children seem to really be grasping these skills and are continuing to make great progress. With Mrs Casewell, the children have been developing their understanding of division through manipulatives. We have learnt the terms divisor, dividend, quotient and remainder to help us to explain our maths clearly. We have also been extending our thinking to solving reasoning problems like, “My friend says that if I have a dividend that is even and a divisor of 2, there will never be a remainder. Is she correct? Explain.”  Please continue to practise times tables as this knowledge is essential for the fraction work which we will be starting next term, and will  help the children to feel more confident in their learning.

In literacy, we have been reading the book, Varjak Paw, and most of the children have changed their initial opinions from “Not sure if I’ll enjoy it,” to ” Loving it!”They can’t wait to read on and we will therefore continue this text next term. Please try to resist the temptation to read it over half term.

Reminder: On Friday the 2nd of February the Roman Empire will be coming to St John’s as it is it is Roman Day in Year 4! We would like to encourage all children to get creative and dress up as a Roman. The day will involve a workshop in the morning with a Roman themed lesson throughout the day. It is going to be a great day.

 

New year and new journeys

Firstly, I’d like to say happy new year to you all. It was lovely returning to school yesterday to see smily, well-rested children eager to learn and to hear all about their Christmas gifts and how they spent time with loved ones. It seems the midnight fireworks were a highlight for many.

I’d also like to say an enormous thank you for all your Christmas wishes and generous gifts. I have been truly spoilt! THANK YOU!

Last term, saw us complete our literacy unit on Mouse Bird Snake Wolf and some examples of the children’s work are now on display. The children wrote across many genres including diaries, descriptive pieces, persuasive letters and short stories, developing their use of dialogue to show charaterisation. We have now added to our repetoire of sentence openers, using ed-ing-ly phrases and are beginning to “drop-in subordinate clauses” to add detail creating increasingly complex sentences.

Yesterday, we began exploring our new text, Varjak Paw (always a favourite) which provides many rich writing opportunities that we look forward to sharing with you during the term. Please try to avoid reading this text at home as we like to explore the text together in class.

We begin our new maths learning journey about division, developing both mental and written methods. Please continue to practise times tables as this knowledge plays a key role in enabling pupils to solve division problems.  I wonder how many children will reach their goal in achieving 100% in our weekly times table challenge?

In science, we begin yet another journey, travelling through the digestive system. The children have already generated their own questions they wish to explore answers to, for example:

“What happens to the food we eat?”

“Why are some people allergic to certain foods?”

“What happens to someone who is gluten intolerant if they eat gluten?”

“How long does food take to digest and does the body use all of the food?”

Reminder: Please bring in musical instruments on Monday and Tuesday is our 3rd swimming lesson so please ensure the children have their swimming kits in school.

We have lots to learning and exploration planned for this term and, as ever, we will be busy.  Thank you for your continued support at home. Keep up the hard work Year 4!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Year 4 Journey through Term 2

It’s the end of week 4 and not long now before Christmas, with time flying by. The children have been working exceptionaly hard and are striving to achieve their own learning goals. For some, this has meant earning a pen licence, for others it has been improving their spelling scores ( well done to you all for achieving this) and still more children strive to beat their times tables scores. Keep up the great work Year 4.

Journeys! Our learning journey about rivers has come to an end, with the children producing lovely river poetry and art work to accompany this. Thank you Mrs Bennett for displaying our work so beautifully.

 

 

 

 

Our mathematical journey  through multiplication methods is nearly complete, with children now learning to multiply by 10 and 100, and continuing to learn their times tables. They have been so excited to move their sailing boat along the river as we have added more strategies to our mathematical knowledge and understanding. What will the next journey be and what vehicle will we travel in? I wonder!

 

Mr Field  has been teaching the children how to explore maps and use co-ordinates to locate places. They have been applying their skills in both maths and topic lessons with good success.

In science, we have begun to investigate electricity and are designing our torches. 

Keep up the great work Year 4. Remember to access Mymaths, Topmarks and Spellodrome  to practise your tables and spellings. Let’s see if we can end Term 2 with everyone achieving 10/10 on their spellings and beating their best scores in the times table challenge. You can do it!

 

 

 

 

 

Term 2 Lots of learning ahead

This week, it has been lovely to see the children back after half term with exciting news to share and very rare and special treasures to show and tell. A 3.75million year old Megaladon tooth was one such treasure! How exciting! Thank you Megan for sharing that with us.

We have continued our learning about rivers and the water cycle, learning about the role played by evaporation and condensation in this process. We have learned through diagrams, actions and particularly songs. I hope the children have not been driving you mad with their singing. Although, I have to say, singing has worked effectively in helping them to recall the science vocabulary and also be able to write detailed explanations of the water cycle.  Here is the link to it ( Warning; it will get stuck in your head)  https://uk.video.search.yahoo.com/search/video?fr=mcafee&p=the+water+cycle+song#id=1&vid=e59ce0d5ff9a81efe05a8497ff03cc09&action=click

We have concluded the topic on rivers, writing a range of river poetry which will soon be on display in school.

This term, we begin our learning journey in maths; developing written methods for multiplication and division, finding factor pairs, plotting co-ordinates, area and perimeter. The children will continue to practise their times tables and division facts and support with this at home would be greatly appreciated.

We begin our “LIGHT  IT UP” topic, learning about electrical circuits, and by the end of term, we will conclude our learning with a DT project that uses the knowledge gained in science lessons.

It is a busy term once again, but the children are already increasing in their maturity and independence as learners and are a joy to teach, showing enthusiasm and greater willingness to work hard.

I look forward to meeting you all at parent consultations next week to share your child’s achievements with you.

 

 

 

WATER WATER EVERYWHERE!

As part of Year 4’s learning about rivers and the water cycle,a team from South East Water led a workshop teaching the children about where water comes from, how it reaches their homes and the importance of conserving it!

The most exciting part of the workshop was splitting into two teams, and being set the engineering challenge to design a pipe network to transport water around a village. To test the designs, water was let through the pipes whilst Mrs Casewell kept her fingers crossed that Class 4 were excellent engineers. She was not disappointed as both networks worked efficiently and there were no spillages.

One team was awarded the prize for creating the most direct route and also the most cost effective (South East water would be impressed); the other team was  awarded the prize for the most creative network, although not the most efficient!

Class 4 were set the 4 minute challenge in a bid to save water by showering. How many of you have taken up the challenge? Let Mrs Casewell know how well your family is getting on with this.

 

New Term News!

I am delighted to say that the children have settled in to their new classroom routines and are familiarising themselves with new learning expectations for Year 4 with a positive attitude and determination to do their best!

A few children have already earned their pen licences and some are very nearly there!  Dylan has been working hard to develop a neat, joined handwriting style and has had  piece of work put on display on our Wonderful Work Wall to celebrate this.

It has  already been a very busy term. In literacy, we have been exploring Carol Ann Duffy’s Lost Happy Endings which is full of gorgeous descriptive language and beautiful illustrations. We have been developing our inference skills and were surprised to find out how much we can learn about a character from a simple illustration. This week, we have written diary entries in the role of Jub, showing her disappointment and despair after having had the endings stolen by an evil, old woman.

In Science, we have been exploring states of matter, using drama to help us understand the properties of each state and so far we have investigated the question;Do gases weigh anything?”

In RE, we have been looking at the Creation story and what it tells Christians about God and also human nature. Yesterday, the children put forward arguments both in support  and defence of Adam and Eve’s actions; making for an interest debate!

We have been learning about the journey of a river in preparation for our River trip next week and we have been investigating and building different types of bridges in DT. Some of our work is on display outside the classroom.

So far, we all working hard to do our very best and I am certainly looking forward to watching the children develop maturity, independence and confidence over the course of the year. A busy year it will be, I assure you!