A Terrific Tudor Day!

Tuesday 3rd November will go down in history as Class 5’s tremendous Tudor Tuesday!

The day began with matching Tudor words to their meanings! I think we all managed to match ‘glaziers’ to ‘eyes’ but who knew that ‘ to couch a hogs head’ was to go to to sleep! I hope your children have been testing you.

We discovered that during the Tudor age, knights fought battles dressed in heavy, metal armour. Even their faces were completely covered. This meant no one could tell who they were fighting! Therefore, knights began painting the colours and symbols of their side on their shields. The use of symbols became representative of the family or country you represented.

So each member of the class created their own coat of arms that represented their family using the colours and animals from the Tudor heraldry registry so that they were recognisable to all during our jousting competition.


Jousting was a sport for knights and lords. Each joust was a fight between two men on horseback. It wasn’t a real fight, like on a battlefield. It was a sport with a set of rules. The knights used a lance (a long weapon like a spear) or sometimes a sword or axe. They charged towards each other on horseback. The aim was to earn points by breaking the lance of the other knight. More points were earned for breaking a lance on the other man’s armour.

Our jousting competition took the form of the knights practise rounds whereby they had to ride and spear a ring with a lance at speed! Instead of horses we borrowed the tricycles from Reception, our lances were large folded umbrellas and the competition was fought in houses.



After much fun and laughter, green house emerged the winners with red house a close second, followed quickly by blue house and finally yellow house. We rewarded ourselves by eating a biscuit made by Mrs Baillache and Miss Reynolds from a typical Tudor recipe.

We learnt that Henry VIII was a keen jouster. When Henry was 44 years old, he was injured jousting. He was crushed by his horse and lay unconscious for two hours. This fall is thought to have damaged his health.

Back in the classroom we discussed our knowledge of the Tudor period and in particular the sights and smells. We then all created a pomander. These were carried, held to the nose, suspended on chains or girdles or hung in rooms to ward off bad smells, freshen clothes and make the wearer smell nice. It was also believed that these sweet smelling herbs and spices could ward off infectious diseases and protect the wearer from illness.

After lunch, everyone chose an area of interest to research such as a typical Tudor menu, instructions for jousting or popular Tudor crimes and their unpopular punishments.



Finally, our Tudor Day ended with a fun quiz which showed us all how much we have learnt this past term about the age of the Tudors!


Here are our fabulous Tudor portraits painted in the style of Hans Holbein which decorate the walls of our classroom.


Flowers, beautiful flowers.

Welcome back to term 6. I hope that over half term you all had chance to rest, relax and enjoy the sunshine so that you have come back to your home learning feeling energized and enthusiastic again.

I know that many of you have been growing plants in your garden and I hope that all of the pea seeds I sent you have germinated and are growing now. Here are my pea plants in my back garden and if you look carefully you can see a few flowers and some small pea pods emerging!


We have been enjoying eating our lettuces and radishes but they all seem to have grown at the same rate including those we put in later.

I have grown a vegetable I have never grown before and I find it fascinating. It is called kohlrabi and it looks a bit like an alien vegetable as it produces a big bulb that you can eat on the surface of the soil. You can just see the purple bulb forming.

Thank you to everyone who has sent in their portal stories this week or their letter writing about the beginning of the railways in Victorian times. They have all been very well written and you can see them in the Year 5 gallery.

Another task that you were set this week was to dissect and label the parts of flowers as part of your science learning. I know that many of you enjoyed this activity and your pictures of your various flower dissections are also on the gallery. Have a look at this PowerPoint by Eloise, of her flower dissection too.

Download (PDF, 1.88MB)

A science challenge that you have all been set, is to represent the lifecycles of different animals in creative ways. Alex made the lifecycle of a fish using gingerbread and Hettie represented the lifecycle of a frog using sweets. What yummy ideas!

Our Year 5 thought for the day


Dear Year 5,

It was lovely to see and hear you all again yesterday. Thank you all for making the effort to join in and I hope all you found it worthwhile and enjoyable seeing everyone. We loved hearing your little snippets of news and were once again blown away by your creativity, positivity and all-round brilliance! You are a special bunch.

I think we’re probably all missing social contact at the moment so opportunities to keep in touch with people we care about are more important than ever. Do have a think about any family members or friends who might be feeling lonely and consider giving them a call or sending them a little card or note – a little effort can go such a long way. Well done Godelieve on those home-made cards… they will bring a lot of joy.

It was great to hear some different reading recommendations and I was particularly struck by Ben’s comment that he’s realised that reading is the solution to boredom – what a great thing to have come out of lockdown for Ben! A priceless treasure that will stay with him forever hopefully.

Which reminds me.. have you sent Mrs G a photo of you reading in a bizarre place?! Check out her blog for other people’s examples… and remember to look at the other blogs too for all the fun and enriching things on offer – Maths, Science, Spanish, Music.

Now for the riddles / challenges:

Did you manage to guess the owner of last week’s skull?

Answer: a fox

And this week’s challenge courtesy of Eloise: how long is her gargantuan paper chain? It has 208 rings and took 2 hours to complete.


Answer next time.

Nothing much to report from the Grobel household this week. Just doing our work to the best of our ability (or at least trying to) and then enjoying the weather and the simple pleasures of life – getting better at football, skateboarding and cycling!

Huge, enormous, colossal well done to all of you and your families for all the effort you’ve made with your learning this term. There will no doubt have been plenty of ups and downs for everyone, and more to come, but how lovely to see you all smiling yesterday and sharing some of the wonderful things you’ve been discovering and experimenting with. Keep it up.

Have a fun, relaxing half-term and we very much look forward to seeing you all again soon, most probably on Zoom again!

God bless,

Mr G and Mrs G




Fishy Friday

Dear Y5,

First, I’d just like to point you all towards Mrs G’s English blog where she reminds us all about the importance, power and fun of READING! She has also set everyone a fun photographic challenge… 

Now, what a lovely treat for us all to see each other yesterday by the power of Zoom! It was really good to see your faces and hear your voices. Mrs G and I often say to each other how lucky we are to have such a kind, fun and conscientious class this year. Hopefully we’ll be able to see you all again before too long.

I often reflect on the fact that this whole experience is different for everyone depending on a whole host of factors and I was reminded of this again on today’s call when I asked you to rate lockdown on a scale of 1 – 10.

Whatever your circumstances, I hope there are opportunities for you to spend time doing the things you enjoy (e.g. cycling, horse-riding, painting, drawing, reading etc.) as well as trying out new things occasionally (e.g. tap-dancing, hula-hooping, camping out).

In my family, skateboarding is the new thing; and the boys and I gave fishing a go yesterday. We bought a rod soon after school closed but hadn’t been able to use it as lockdown started the day after we bought it! So we were quite excited at being able to try it out for the first time.


We knew someone who was able to give us a hand which helped but, even so, the excitement quickly started to ebb away as we encountered various difficulties: freezing hands; catching nothing more than a leaves and lily pads; getting the hook caught in various trees; and having to deal with hugely frustrating tangles. In fact, the highlight of the whole thing was untangling the line after 20 minutes trying…


So it’s tempting to give up.

But we’re not going to. It was actually a really useful reminder for me about how we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves when things get tough – after all, we can only do what we can do. We should give things our best shot but, if it doesn’t work out, it’s ok!

Similarly, if there’s one thing we should all learn from this virus, it’s that ultimately we’re not in control (however much we like to think we are) and, far from being a bad thing, it’s liberating to accept that. Of course, it helps if you have faith that Whoever is in control knows best…


Finally, riddles…

Answer to the last one: in the dictionary (well done Eloise and anyone else who got it)

And this week’s: to what animal do you think this belonged?

Keep up the good work and have a good final week before half-term.

God bless,

Mr G and Mrs G







75 years since VE Day!

‘Victory in Europe Day’ or VE Day, marks the day towards the end of World War Two (WW2) when fighting against Nazi Germany in Europe came to an end.

On 8 May, 1945 (75 years ago), Prime Minister Winston Churchill made an announcement on the radio at 3pm that the war in Europe had come to an end, following Germany’s surrender the day before. This announcement led to big celebrations and street parties throughout Europe.

Huge crowds – with lots of people dressed in red, white and blue – gathered outside Buckingham Palace in London. They cheered as King George VI and his family, including Princess Elizabeth (our current queen) and Princess Margaret, came out onto the balcony to greet everybody. Princess Elizabeth and her sister were allowed to leave the palace and celebrate with crowds outside, although they had to do it secretly. She described it as “one of the most memorable nights of my life”. Many people also attended church services to thank God for the victory.

Even though VE day marked victory for Europe over Germany, it did not mark the end of WW2. This came on 15 August 1945, when the allies had officially defeated Japan. This date is known as VJ Day.

It was planned for us to mark this special day with street parties and celebrations throughout the country. However, due to our current circumstances we have had to find different ways to celebrate. How are you celebrating?

Here is the agenda for the socially distanced celebrations in my village.


Tonight, after the ‘clap for our carers’ my street began decorating their houses. Now, everywhere you look you can see red, white and blue bunting, flags and VE Day signs. Unfortunately, it was too dark to take photos but here are some I took earlier.


To help you celebrate tomorrow, Mrs Hana has put some music on her blog from 1940 so make sure you have a look.

We have been delighted to receive many different examples of your work this week from beautiful examples of handwriting, diary or weather reports to maths challenges and science life cycles. Thank you for sharing your work with us and make sure you look at all the wonderful examples below and in our Year 5 gallery.


Georgia’s acrylic art work                 Oli’s excellent joined handwriting


A STEM project to make a bike ramp!                     Chloe’s comparison of lifecycles.

Take care everyone and be kind to each other.

Mrs G and Mr G

With you in spirit

Hello again Year 5,

As we come to the end of school week 4 of lockdown, some of us might be experiencing a bit of lockdown fatigue?! I hope you’re all managing to stay in good spirits.

St. John’s spirit

Did you enjoy the loo roll video? I hope you’ve all seen it (on Mrs Quirk’s blog if not).

Now that we’re past the peak of the virus, it hopefully won’t be too much longer before we’ll be back together and you can be reunited as the brilliant Year 5 class you are, full of positivity, enthusiasm and kindness.

From the look of all the great work you’ve been sending in, you’ve certainly been productive and creative – keep it up! Mrs G and I would love to have heard from everyone by the end of today if possible.

Spirit of fun

First a riddle:

Where does Friday come before Thursday?

Answer in my next blog in two weeks’ time. The blog will only be weekly from now on (alternating Fridays between me and Mrs G).

Next, a clip which I forgot to post a month ago (Teddy getting his own back… just not on me!):


Is your spirit of fun alive and well? Maybe get your prank heads on to keep things interesting at home?! Nothing too serious though obviously…

Birthday spirit

Have you been tapping into the birthday spirit with COLONEL Tom? What a legend!

As a decorated soldier who fought in World War II, he also brings to mind the Blitz spirit, something of which has been evident these past few weeks in our national response to this crisis. No doubt Colonel Tom will particularly enjoy next Friday which is a bank holiday to commemorate VE day – more to follow about that next week.

Spirit of adventure

As you know, things are changing slightly next week with the new home learning timetable. Sometimes a change, even a small one, can help reinvigorate us; like the change in the weather…did anyone get out for a rainy walk?

On one of our walks earlier this week, I spotted a couple of monkeys – can you spot them?

And yesterday afternoon, I decided we’d been in the house too long and would embrace the rain. The boys weren’t massively keen but it’s amazing what adventures you can have when you just DO things…

Hill-running: PSLisu4ZS0yOAt0CMmoVIg

Wildlife spotting:


And hole-digging (also featuring new sport of root-wrestling!):

Having dug our hole (for no particular reason), we ended up coming home with bark-platefuls of clay ready for some sort of sculpting at a later date. All from what started as a rather aimless walk – adventure is out there!

Holy Spirit

Have a peaceful (but adventurous) weekend and may the Holy Spirit put wind in your sails as we continue to navigate these choppy waters!

With you in spirit,

Mrs G and Mr G

Star light, star bright.

How many of you have been outside during the evening looking for Elon Musk’s Starlink satellites? I know that Mrs Casewell, Hettie and myself have. We managed to count 22 but I know Mrs Casewell counted 26. Did any of you count more?

Mrs Casewell suggested the Find Starlink Satellites app which was useful for locating them and finding out the times they might pass.

Here is a photo of what I saw in the sky above my house.

I have been spending my spare time working on my allotment, sowing and planting seeds. However, a member of our class has created his own vegetable plot; sown various seeds in his greenhouse and has begun to plant them out. Can you recognise any of the plants he has grown? I am envious of how big his seedlings have grown, so much bigger than mine. I think you will agree he has green fingers!

One of the tasks from last week was to draw a line graph of the recorded temperature over a day. All the line graphs that I saw were excellent, however, I wanted to share Elspeth’s as she not only plotted the recorded temperature but using a thermometer she recorded the actual temperature each hour in her garden. She found that the temperatures were fairly similar which is good news for us as it means that the temperatures reported on the weather apps are pretty accurate.


Please make sure you look in the Year 5 Gallery. It is here that we display our class work that we have been sent.  Don’t forget, Mrs Quirk will be handing out new Home Learning books at the school from 9:30am – 11:00am today for those of you who are running out of paper.

Enjoy your learning this week and remember Mr G and I are always happy to see your best work or answer your queries.

Have a good week.

Mrs G and Mr G


Keep smiling!

Hi everyone,

It’s late on Thursday evening as I write and I’m thinking back over the week gone by. It’s been another busy one in our household. How about you?


Mrs G and I have really enjoyed hearing from some of you and seeing examples of all the lovely work you’ve been doing showing such variety, originality and creativity – well done and keep it up! It’s been especially nice to see some of your smiley faces on some of the photos you’ve sent us. I’ve just had a look at the new Year 5 Gallery section of the school website – check it out!


And keep posting things on the PurpleMash forum as it’s a fun way for you to keep in touch with each other too.

If you haven’t yet sent us something or posted something, we’d love to hear from you soon – a piece of work you’re proud of, something you’ve made, a new skill?


Earlier this week, Mrs G and I saw a whole host of other familiar, smiley faces on a Zoom call with all the St John’s staff. It was really nice to see and hear from everyone and, while everyone seemed in pretty good spirits, there was also a lot of talk of missing the fun and buzz of being in school with all the children.


Another topic that came up a lot was the weather and how much people are enjoying nature at the moment; appropriate given it was Earth Day on Wednesday. If you have a look at Mrs Casewell’s Science blog, you’ll see how some others marked the occasion…


Do also have a look at Mrs Gillhouley’s Maths blog for the next challenge.


Today, as a FaceTime surprise for their big brother George, Teddy and Zach performed a puppet show of the traditional St George and the Dragon tale. I was interested to note the differences between this and the more factual version on the Powerpoint that Mrs G circulated.

Whichever version you consider though, there’s no doubt that St George is still an inspirational figure for people in England as well as around the world. Why? Because he shows us at our very best with his virtues of courage, honour, faith, humility, generosity, perseverance and self-sacrifice.

Can you think of any people displaying these same virtues today?

If you can, don’t forget to thank them. And give yourselves a pat on the back while you’re at it!


God bless and enjoy the sun this weekend.


Mrs G and Mr G












Monday again!

Good morning Year 5.

Today we begin week 3 of our home learning and we have many fun activities ready for you to enjoy.

We hope that you are all able to enjoy the days of lovely sunshine we have been having either in your back gardens or out and about on your daily opportunity to leave the house for a walk, run or cycle. Perhaps you have been learning a new skill or trying something new? As you know I have been learning to hula-hoop, which I can now do so my next step is to try and walk and hula-hoop at the same time. I definitely haven’t mastered this yet but I will keep trying!

You should have received an email this morning with helpful guidance about today’s tasks. Please check your ‘junk’ mail if you cannot see it in your inbox and let us know of any problems. Mr Grobel and I have been delighted to receive your emails and for you to share pictures of your best pieces of work. We have been really impressed by the creativity that we have seen. Thank you for sending it to us.

Last week’s timelines of the Victorian era were presented beautifully in a variety of different ways. Some (like the one below) were nearly as long as you are tall!

Georgia’s timeline showed her perseverance as she said how hard it was not to smudge her metallic pens on the black card. We think her efforts were rewarded by the creation of an ingenious timeline. Don’t you?

On a similar theme, Godelieve chose to research Charles Dickens as her historical Victorian figure. We loved all her ‘lift the flaps’, packed full of information as well as her extraordinary drawing of the man himself!

You were set the challenge on Friday of learning and reciting a poem off by heart just like we did with ‘The Highwayman’ earlier this year. Here is a fun rendition of a poem from the book by Tim Burton called ‘The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and other stories’.

poetry recital

Please continue to choose the piece of work you’re most proud of over the course of the week and send it to Mr G and myself.  We will respond and give feedback to everything we receive from you.

Be kind to your ‘new teachers’.

Mrs G and Mr G



Welcome back Y5!

Hello Y5 and welcome back!

I hope you and your families are all fit and well and had a happy and healthy Easter.

How much Easter chocolate do you have left?! I’m down to my last few bits and am having to eggsercise eggstreme self-discipline not to turn into the thieving ‘Chocolate Monster’ in my house as it tends to upset people…

As we all know, we sadly won’t be seeing each other to share news from the holidays so Mrs G and I will be keeping in touch by means of these blogs (normally on a Monday and Friday) as well as by daily emails relating to your learning. To make up for this, it would be lovely if you could share some of your news and photos on the Purple Mash 2Blog area. What have you all been up to?!

With all the glorious weather over the break, I imagine a fair few of you had the paddling pools out? Never too old for a paddling pool. During a clean-out of my sheds, I found an old sprinkler which caused much amusement.

We also made the most of our daily exercise time to explore the nearby countryside. What a stunning time of year! The word that springs to mind is ‘growth’. Everything is just going for it, soaking up all the sun’s energy and using it to photosynthesise like mad!

Here’s a selection of seasonal pics from the Grobel household…

Celebrating new life











Growing in foraging knowledge (as well as lockdown beard!)

Progress in the wormery

Mr G learning from his mistake after putting undiluted tomato feed on his chili plants – aargh, will they survive?!

But at least the Bonsai seedling is still alive

If you’d like to try out some foraging and want any tips (or can give me any tips), I’d love to hear from you.


As Mrs G has shared with you on previous blogs, she’s also been enjoying some gardening as well as reading and playing games with her family. However, what you may not know is that she’s also been learning some new skills – check this out (I hope the video works):


Pretty cool huh?! Maybe we should all have a hula competition? Most hoops at once? Fastest  hula-ing? Ideas and vids on Purple Mash 2Blog please!


I’m sure you’ll agree that Mrs G is using her time wisely…are you?

As this new term gets underway, my advice would be to knuckle down early in the day with the day’s learning – to the best of your ability but also efficiently – so that you earn yourself some ‘free’ time to GROW. The best way to grow is to try out new things and explore new horizons – whether physically or through the power of books!

Mrs G and I are here if you have any questions or need any support and we’re looking forward to hearing from you.

Maybe check out Señora Hayes Spanish blog which goes up every Wednesday. Yesterday’s is on the subject of chocolate caliente… yum…


Finally, I must just give you the answer to my last riddle. In case you’ve forgotten it was as follows:

what has four letters, sometimes has nine letters but never has five letters

Did you get it? The eagle-eyed among you will have noted the lack of a question mark at the end. This was not a mistake (punctuation is my middle name) because the riddle is in fact a statement, not a question. Re-read it and you’ll see that ‘what’ does indeed have 4 letters, ‘sometimes’ does have 9 letters and ‘never’ has 5. Groan!



Mrs G and Mr G