Welcome to the class page for Year 4 Eliot. Here you can find out everything we’ve been up to during the week, as well as our homework tasks.
Our teacher is Mr Perry and our TA is Miss Cummings.
We hope you are as glad to be back to school as we are and despite the challenging times we live in we aim for the day to day running of the class to be as normal as possible.
We look forward to getting to know you all as the year progresses.
Well we have quite the extremes in weather this week! Who said global warming theories were not true? I hope anyone did not suffer both sunstroke or catching a cold!
There is that feeling in the air that we are approaching our traditional end of year St Stephen madness as tenuous plans are put in place. Let us hope we can do as much as possible so the Year 6s in particular can get the end of year that they deserve.
This week as well as continuing our work on time (moving to the 24 hour clock and solving problems around seconds, minutes and hours) we have also really focused on the information text writing in English. The children worked really hard to produce an information text on a subject close to many children’s hearts – endangered animals. They chose one of four animals from polar bears, tigers, snow leopards or pandas. using an exemplar on grey wolves as an example the children researched ‘sub heading’ areas such as their social habits, diet, habitat and of course their conservation. We also gathered a few facts as a class and were very concerned as we read there were little over 4000 snow leopards, under 2000 wild pandas, around 3000 wild tigers and 27000 polar bears. We felt a little better learning the polar bear numbers have increased a bit lately. It did bring it home a little though just what humans have done to our world. It was lovely when I heard that a number of children wanted to make the school more aware and took it upon themselves to make posters to advertise the animals plight.
Other events this week culminated a frantic , yet fun Friday. Of course at some point we knew we would have class photos – cue the comment ‘boys tuck in your shirt’ ringing out throughout the day. Also I noticed the pony tails and pigtails were in abundance more than usual as well. Alas I do not have any hair to speak of to change in anyway.
The children had drama with Mark today – something they just love as well as PE and art so a truly fun day all round. Even when it is really wet, Alistaire makes PE fun and the children enjoyed a mixture of inside and out activities. History also continued today with a look at the Mayan calendar and of course I just had to mention the disaster movie called 2012- where the Mayans calendar ran out at it was supposed to signal the end of the world. They looked at the symbols and hieroglyphs that represent the months of the year and numbers.
Homework is as always on the right and I would like to mention that I am hoping for a small excursion to Holland Park in the future, but will parent mail you the details.
Have a brilliant weekend
Well it has been an interesting week that has absolutely flown by! Hard to believe we only have about six weeks left together…cue howl of anguish and gushing sobs… or massive sigh of relief and contentment. It depends really how you look at it 🙂 . Maybe you are somewhere in the middle.
Well we must start with our maths topic- that of time. It can always be assumed that we all know how to tell the time on a daily basis. It is only when we get down to the intricate part of learning about time that we realise we have lots to learn.
We have learnt about the different ways of saying and showing a time (eg 7.45pm , quarter to 8 etc) and we have learnt to accurately draw the hands on an analogue clock. the hour hand being a little trickier than we thought. Finally the children were all pleased to get a watch of their own (kindly donated by FOSS) and so cue lots of ‘what’s the time ?’ being heard throughout the school. I told them how much better this was than my own experience learning about time where my Dad made me sit at the table and not leave until I had learnt! It only took about six hours of torture! Ah yes another story from Mr P. See the photos above.
We had a couple of excellent practical lessons again in both science and history. In science we looked at how distance can affect how we hear sound and how the sounds themselves change. The children enjoyed being outside with their measure sticks, chosen items for making a noise (not that this lot need that ) and their science books. Science investigations are always fun! History carried on looking at the Mayan civilization with a research lesson into the Mayan daily life (much more mellow than last time when we looked at human sacrifice). The children are very dab hands at using ipads and laptops. They thought of their own questions ranging from looking at clothing, to learning about their diet. Great work was done by all!
At the end of the week we wrapped the day up with an art lesson carrying on our work on the Tudor era painter Hans Holbein. The children brought a few props in and we went outside to sit and pose in a suitable regal manner- just like the Tudors – although I have to say I do not think the subject in the paintings ever smiled!
Homework is on the right and I will see you all next week. Feel free to ask me in the playground if you wish to see any more photos of my wedding.
27th May 2021
It has been an interesting week that is for sure. As I prepare mentally for the changes in my own life it has definitely been business as normal in Year 4 . The children have been their usual energetic, enthusiastic and bouncy best! They always keep me on my toes that is for sure.
We have spent the week finishing off some topics as well as consolidating knowledge with the odd assessment or two thrown in for good measure. In English we rounded of our poetry topic by looking at the great poem ‘Talking Turkeys’ by Benjamin Zephania. It has some very interesting and thought provoking messages within the poem from a man with a great skill at expressing his views and opinions in a way that makes us think. As a meat eating human it certainly got my thought processes in overdrive. We looked at how poets often began through using poetry as a means to express their emotions, views and feelings. The children then picked an animal and looked at the issues and life styles of that creature and then planned and wrote a poem about them. It was interesting seeing how issues were included from climate change to poaching and from deforestation to pollution, A great topic all round.
In science we have been looking at ‘Sound’. Last time we looked at how sound can cause vibrations and this week we looked at how sound can penetrate materials to greater and lesser degree. As an investigation the children were instructed to move around in pairs in different parts of the school and to listen out for sounds from the classrooms, playgrounds, offices and many other parts of the building. Knowing how lively this bunch is I did go with some trepidation, but the children were very professional and acted brilliantly. We got our results and headed back to class for a bit of an analysis of the findings. Great work Year 4!
We enjoyed our fourth week on the Mayans and once again found very interesting comparisons with the Egyptians by looking at their religion and temples. The children researched some of their practices (they particularly found some of the gorier elements exciting) and at how important the priests were in their society. I may have told you once or twice (and I have certainly told the children many many times) but I just love history! It is equally fulfilling seeing children beginning their own budding love for the subject as well.
We began a new art subject this week , looking at the works of Hans Holbein the famous Tudor era painter. We had a wonderful discussion about frankly how miserable his subjects were! The children discussed why that might be thinking about individuals such as Thomas Moore, Henry VIII and Ann of Cleves and then we drew portraits of some these famous figures. Next time we hope to draw a Tudor style portrait of a classmate.
Finally (at the risk of sounding like an end of term speech) I was absolutely blown away by your generous gift and well wishes for my upcoming wedding. You parents have been amazingly supportive and has helped this tough year (in terms of the lockdown and not my wedding planning I hasten to add) go so much better. The children have been almost as excited about the wedding as my family with many offers of being a bridesmaid, a best man (from one young lady) and a choir! I got given just the most special cards in a beautiful box from all the children and when reading them last night it quite literally brought a tear to my eye. You are all brilliant thank you!
Please have a safe and blessed half-term
21st May 2021
It has been quite a week! With a lot of fun to be had I would like to think!
Although I am aware Covid is here to stay for a while it has been wonderful to see many elements of school and indeed our outside life starting to slowly come back to normal. However as I may have said once or twice before ‘normal’ is not something I would associate with St Stephens.
Well maths was definitely fun this week! We have been looking at money by covering lessons on estimating, comparing and adding and subtracting money. Towards the end of the week the children in my maths group – with fantastic enthusiasm – began working in groups preparing price lists for their ‘shop’. They began on Wednesday with a board meeting to break down the items they would sell and how much they would sell them for. The shops ranged from sweet shops to toy shops – just your average high street ones. After that the children prepared their advertising and posters of prices. Then on Thursday the children visited each other’s shops to buy three or four items and to then work out cost and change from £50. They really got into it and I must admit it reminded me a little of a mini ‘Apprentice’ episode. You will be pleased to know I did not fire anyone!
English this week has also been quite inspiring. Each day we looked at a different type of poem that included haikus, tankas, kennings, limericks and cinquins. The children had completed examples in their book on appropriate topical subjects like nature , mythical and literacy characters such as Voldemort (from Harry Potter) or Poseidon to favourite foods. Then at the end of the week the children chose an animal and produced three poems using three different forms and wrote and then typed them up for a display. There have been brilliant poems all round this week
Today was quite a positive day too. This morning after PE and our spelling test ten children from each class went off to a cricket tournament (great to see a number of children from my cricket club involved too) and at writing this I hope to have we have won! Those left behind also had fun as they had an hour of coding on the computers, clay modeling (organised by the wonderful Miss Tracey and Miss Cummins) and a rounders match playing against the other class. Now I do not like to brag but…..WE WON! There are a few photos on the pottery above.
Next week we have our half-termly D & T day and we are looking at food. Mrs Jeffrey has sent you a parent mail outlining what we will do and a few requests for some items. We are looking at Spanish and Mexican food and will be preparing items on this topic.
In assemblies the last few weeks we have been looking at our vision statement. This is something that runs through our whole school and is what drives us. It is important the children learn the words and we hope they recognise why these words are important. Our assembly on Thursday was based around ‘Excellence’ and how to achieve excellence sometimes we have to take risks and step out of our comfort zone , even if it feels too difficult. Here is a reminder again of our vision.
Through God We Achieve
OUR VISION AT ST STEPHEN’S CE PRIMARY SCHOOL:
To deliver outstanding education in a caring community, with God at its centre.
Joy – we provide a happy and stimulating environment, rooted in Christian values.
Excellence – we are a church school committed to the highest standards in everything we do.
Relationship – we work hand-in-hand with St Stephen’s Church as well as our parents and carers.
Respect – we enable our children to deepen or realise their own faith and respect the freedom of others in their beliefs.
Nurture – our children are cared for spiritually, morally, intellectually, physically, socially and emotionally.
‘Turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding’
Homework as always on the right of this entry and on google classroom.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Well this term is motoring along!
Hard to believe we are so close to the half term and my impending wedding. One child who shall remain nameless has offered to be my best man and I had to politely decline!
English this week was fun as we looked at different forms of poetry – particularly haikus and cinquins. The children had great fun choosing assorted subjects for their poems (usually wildlife based ) and then really working hard to assume they had the correct format to ensure their poems were successful. We played a game with the cinquains where I gave them a folded bit of paper with a mystery noun with examples from King Kong to Mr Perry (why did I put them together ) and then the children had to go and write a cinquin on that topic. Some crackers were written!
In maths we have been solving problems around ‘money’. The children have used their growing decimal knowledge to help order, compare and estimate different amounts.
Well been another fun-filled week in the life of Year 4 Eliot class! How can it still feel a long week even with a Bank Holiday?
The children have been working very hard in all subjects and been producing excellent results.
We started our new humanity subject on Thursday, moving from geography (Plants of the World ) to history (The Mayan Civilization ). Yes it is no secret I personally love history with most of my personal reading being of a historical nature and I particularly love learning about and teaching lesser known civilizations. I just love it when I get questions like I got this week which was ‘ Why do they have pyramids like the Egyptians and yet are on the opposite side of the planet?’ What a great question and one for me to look up and see if there are any links!
As the title of my entry suggests, although the children had a maths day today it also brought in a real art element to it as well. We started this morning with looking at ‘Parabolic Curves’ and although it was tricky to get it accurate at first – especially using paper without squares – the children persevered and were very proud of their results.
I knew it would be interesting and a little challenging (for me ) when planning for the afternoon, but hoped that the children would have fun. We planned to build 3D robots from various 3D shapes. We had mixed results but it was great to see them all get stuck in.
Please see above for a handful of pictures on the day.
Usually people only mention the weather when thinking of something to say but it has been so odd lately I had to mention it. We have certainly had a mixed bag this past week or so. I was hot on Monday morning , got drenched on Tuesday and thoroughly hailed on this Wednesday. I woke up this morning to a real stunner! A cool day with bright blue sky my absolute favorite. We should have a sweepstake to work out what we will get this weekend. Hopefully it will be weather we love.
Anyway I hope you are finding time to grab that coffee or pint in an outside pub or bar, have a picnic or two with family or visit a friends back garden for a BBQ.
Have a great weekend
I hope you are okay and are getting used to slowly coming back to terms of ‘normal life’.
It has been a fruitful week in class once again with the children working hard and being their usual unique selves!
In science we have rounded up our learning on the digestive system. They looked at all the different digestive parts and their functions by showing their learning in a variety of ‘scientific ways’ (such as a flow charts) all the while laughing at my attempts to pronounce the word ‘ oesophagus’ . For some reason it kept coming out like ‘asparagus’. You could fill in the gaps with the jokes that followed! They were of course very amused (and a little embarrassed) discussing the final product of our eating. Let’s leave it there shall we?
It has been great to see a little more outdoor sport coming into our lives. From the cross country a few weeks ago to the odd additional event by Alistair and Claire. I have been enjoying running a year3/4 cricket club and it was lovely to see the excitement on the faces of those who played a friendly this week.
In English we have engaged in tasks such as getting in character and describing scenery in work related to our class book (The Tin Forest). We have had a heavy emphasis on editing writing to spot mistakes and improve vocabulary. I have added an element of this to the spellings homework as well.
Our humanity topic has also wrapped up this week as the children researched ‘mega- diverse’ countries that home a large number of the worlds plants (and animals) with a focus on finding plants in those countries that are unique and can only be found there. In RE we began our second module on Buddhism and began by looking at Buddhist symbols and their meanings all the while making comparisons to symbols used in other religions.
In art we once again gritted our teeth as we looked at the potential chaotic mess about to explode in our classroom. The children used glue, pasta, lolly sticks straw and many other resources to create a scene of a scrapyard that comes directly from our story the Tin Forest. A lot of fun…and a lot of mess! See the pictures above!
These are a few snippets of our learning this week and I am sure the children will fill you in on our other subjects.
A few important notes to wrap up. Homework as always is situated on the right of the blog. There are a couple of elements I want to emphasis.
We are going to be having an informal X table test later in the year something that in a normal non-covid year all Year 4 classes around the country would be doing. I have put a link for a practice program that we will use in both Google Classroom and on the website.
Miss Mahon also had an assembly last week on Mother Earth Day . There is a homework task on this also in google classroom and on the left. This will be required to be done instead of reading comprehension.
Finally a few thoughts about children collection at the end of the day. As it can be a bit chaotic at hometime, Mr Schumm has asked that we all go and sit on the floor, both those going to after school club and those being collected at 3.30. I will send all those going to Green Gate once we are all seated.
I hope you have a great bank holiday weekend. I do not know about you, but for me there is something about the feeling on a Sunday night when I do not have to go to work the next day that is really special…not that I do not love being with your children!
Welcome back and I hope you had a wonderful Easter break. It is lovely that things can get back to a little bit of normal slowly but surely. I have had a few very chilly cups of coffee sitting outside a café and my fiancée has been able to spend my money at Westfields, but at least this is possible in some form!
The children are definitely back with a bang and I am just about keeping up with them.
In English we have started our fantasy topic looking at a book called ‘The Tin Forest’. We have discussed and written about how the author brings to life the story through both illustration and language. The children have been learning how to predict where the book might be taking them by taking in clues from the pages we have read so far. They have written some excellent observations and descriptive writing so far and have been working hard editing their writing as well.
We are spending the next couple of weeks wrapping up a few topics in Science and Geography by finishing up our modules on ‘plants of the world ‘ and the ‘digestive system’. This week in geography we looked at how extensively we use plants beyond just eating and using the wood from trees. Then children researched how we use plants in hygiene products , clothing and many other examples. The children looked at the digestive system in science and researched their own questions based on the different parts of the stomach.
Today was of course St Georges Day and so we all enjoyed an activity where the children made little dragons . They do so love an art activity! Our reading comprehension homework is based upon St George and the Dragon.
This is on the right as well as on google classroom . We will have reading comprehension, spellings and Mathletics.
I hope your entry back into the school week has been smooth and hope you have a great weekend.
Now where is that late opening cafe?
I have parent mailed you with a few thoughts and notices and so have nothing more to say other than …
Bring on the boxsets, the beautiful walks, an occasional eggy treat and above all the celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Bless you all
It was great speaking to most of you this week. Sorry if we missed each other, hopefully we can catch up over the next few days. I hope you found it useful.
I love the Easter season! Not only is it the most important festival in the Christian calendar, but I love how it usually brings a break in the winter weather. Then of course there is the evidence of new life all around us. It makes me really appreciate all those places in our vicinity such as Kew Gardens, Richmond, Gunnersbury and Osterley parks and Virginia Waters. The fast approaching Easter break is definitely my favourite school break…not that I am counting days or anything.
On that note Mr Schumm would like to also politely request that more Easter eggs for the school raffle are donated please. Here is a little video from him.
In class we have been moving on with our topics. The children love to write, especially narrative writing and they have been enjoying various books this term. So much so, that quite often when we use an excerpt from a book in English, the whole book then joins our reading list. So far we have read Varjak Paw (first time for me and I loved it ) then a Narnia book over lockdown and we are currently knee deep in the first Percy Jackson book. Now the class wants to read the rest of the current book we have been basing our writing on in English – ‘Charlie Small’. This week I noticed that a child was reading…THE VARJAK PAW SEQUEL! So that one has definitely joined our list as well.
Sorry I digressed a bit. So we have been planning and writing pieces linked to the Charlie Small book. The children produced excellent pieces describing a rainforest and then over the last couple of days have planned and written the next part of our story based on an escape from a Gorilla village! I have to say, today I was so impressed with their writing, as I saw each of them focus not only on their success criteria but also on their individual targets as well. Some wonderful work, all around. In science we have focused on our digestive system, with a current focus on our teeth and how we keep them healthy.
It was just brilliant to get the children out of the school for the cross country run. It made me realise we had not had a trip of any kind all term. Apart from a few wonky radars (which had a couple of children veering off course) they did brilliantly with some very fast finishes. All of them did finish and I was very proud as they all crossed the line.
Another quick reminder that next week we have our virtual Easter bonnet parade and our end of year virtual Easter service. Let us hope and pray that we all can get back together soon for these events.
Have a wonderful rest and beginning of Holy Week with Palm Sunday this weekend and I will see you all next week.
Wow is it really 19th March already? In a weird way the year has flown by and yet at the same time has simply crawled. Does that make sense?
We have been as busy as ever. The children have been enjoying singing in class this week. They do love putting themselves forward this bunch. We are thinking about our end of year digital service in a couple of weeks. As RE leader I usually put the services together and although we will not be able to all be together we will have a zoomed service which all can be a part of. We are singing two of my favourite Easter hymns, ‘Colours of Day’ and ‘Lord of the Dance’. Ones I remember fondly from my own primary school days.
My assembly this week has been all about ‘Going for Gold’ (goals) and we had a fun task where children from different classes had the chance to win a prize (sweets for the whole class) or do a forfeit and what forfeits! Did they want to risk a hard task for a goal or not take the chance? Well I had great fun watching classes do tasks such as fifteen laps of the playground, ten press ups in the class and fifty star jumps and no-one won the prize! Our class had to thoroughly clear up the whole playground. I was accused of fixing it …shocking!
Our lessons this week have incorporated a number of skills from reading maps, editing descriptive writing to sketching and drawing a rainforest picture. This morning was particularly important as we discussed in RHE the UN rights for children. As well as being horrified that in countries some children – especially girls – were not allowed an education they were also disappointed that it is not their right to eat sweets or go to bed when they want. Sorry about that kids! We adults are mean.
In the next few weeks before Easter there are a number of events and activities happening that Mr Schumm wants us to let you know.
Next week we firstly (for the third time of trying) are going to take the children for a cross country run. This will happen on Wednesday morning at Ravenscourt Park. The children will need a good (warm) top and water bottle.
Then on Wednesday and Thursday (24th and 25th) we have our virtual parents evening so if you have not already please sign up. I would also remind you that the appointments are 10 minutes and that the system does move us on after. So if we log on five minutes late then we only get five minutes.
Finally we have two events on the last week of term. We have the Virtual Easter bonnet parade on Wednesday, 31st March. This is an opportunity to get the children to think about using recycled materials and to wear their hats to school. On the last day (Thursday 1st April ) we have a virtual whole school Easter service at 9.10am
Homework will be available on both the website (look right) as well as on google classroom. The children were given a gentle reminder today not to forget Mathletics too.
Well what an odd year or so we have had. I always find it interesting when people say ‘It is good that schools are open again’. I have to say then that they were never closed! Still it is a joy to have all the children back together in the class. To hear a full playground of children’s laughter and to be greeted by ‘Hello Mr Perry’ from children of all ages around the school.
So we have been easing ourselves back into the old routine gently. We have started new topics in most subjects and have lots to look forward to. The children have really enjoyed the practical elements of our subjects The Digestive System and Plants of the World in Science and Geography respectively.
A few notices going forward. As it stands the children need to come into school with PE kits for gym on Monday and Kick London on Friday.
We are looking to see if we keep using Google Classroom for homework moving forward but you will get a letter from Mr Faith to let you know if that will be the case.
Finally I must mention our castles. The Art Room was quite literally invaded by them. I was really amazed by the efforts the children produced and in the variety of ways and styles they did so. The photos on the website just give you a flavor of what the children created and very proud of the effort all round. I am looking forward to reading the written parts over the next few weeks. What an effort!
Now to address the little elephant in the room. I am sorry they had to go home so soon. We have records of them and had a lovely afternoon sharing them with each other. I would have loved to have kept them for a bit and maybe even created a display but we simply did not have the space in the school. Year 6 are also bringing their own WW2 projects on Friday so space is a minimum. The projects were wonderful.
Homework will be spellings for next week. mathletics and a little research task on ‘Inspiring Women’. It can be found opposite and on Google Classroom.
So yes we are back and what a joy that is and … when is the end of the term?
18th December 2020
Well it is quite unbelievable that we are already a third of the way through the academic year!
This week has been the usual mix of joy and groans! From the children I hasten to add 🙂 . I have had many accusing stares as I have laid out end of term assessments or told them we WILL finish our English writing or Humanities topics. ‘But it is Christmas’ they would cry!’ We did manage to watch my favourite Christmas movie – ‘The Muppets Christmas Carol’ – and as they watched Ebenezer Scrooge at work I did get a few suspicious looks in my direction as they began to compare us. Although I would like to think they have all had a Christmas theme, with tasks that have included designing and giving an explanation for a toy making machine for Santa’s elves, a couple of Christmas themed Maths quizzes and a D & T day that involved making levers for pop ups of reindeer, Santas and snowmen. Then we had our Christmas dinner and jumper day on Wednesday (thanks to Cookie and team for all their hard work) and a few other festive games and activities.
I have thoroughly enjoyed teaching your children this term. They are a fantastic and lively class and I’m loving getting to know them. We have worked hard, but we have also had a lot of fun. They have an amazing sense of humour, being able to put up with me at my (nicely I assure you) sarcastic best and have been brilliant at taking jokes. They are a supremely talented bunch and I have been truly impressed with them. I promise you they all have a bright future. A few highlights which stand out for me are the amazing art pieces they have produced, some fantastic pieces of writing , the D & T days and of course just the sheer energy they produce. As much as I have come to care about them I am VERY glad to pass them back to you in the afternoon and – as my weekly updates suggest – go home and collapse!
This term we have also had the joy of welcoming four families to our Year 4 Eliot fold and what wonderful additions those children RG, FAD (L), CCT and MD have made to us. They have been brilliant and have fitted in so well to this school and the class. There has been sad news though as we had to say goodbye to the families of SS and EK. These children leave a legacy and have been amazing and we will deeply miss them and their families.
Of course this term has been nothing we would have thought would happen just a year ago. It is hard to believe it WAS a year ago we were beginning to get wind of this awful virus that has hit us and just how life has been affected for us all. For me though it has also highlighted what a fantastic bunch of teachers and staff we have here, a truly brilliant FOSS and of course our amazing head Mr Schumm all of which have kept us going as much as possible, to give your children as enriching an experience we can as a school.
At this Christmas tide I do wish you a peaceful Christmas, no matter what you have been through this year. I know that many of us have been separated from our older or more vulnerable loved ones, many of us have had uncertainties about jobs and financial income and all of us have had the natural flow of life halted or changed completely. I pray none of you have lost loved ones, but if you have I wish you a special peace this Christmas and a chance to celebrate the season with your wonderful children and be able to remember lost ones with joy as well.
I would like finish by coming back to Advent. I have been hosting assemblies once a week and advent has been my theme. The four candles represented are especially poignant for us as a school as each of the words are associated with a year group’s spiritual identity.
HOPE – May all of us have hope in Christ’s coming and hope that 2021 will be a good year
PEACE – May all of you find the peace of Christmas with your loved ones
LOVE – I pray we all experience the love of God this Christmas and the love of our family around us
Joy- I wish you all a joyful and special Christmas as we celebrate the birth of God’s son and time with our family.
Oh and if you have not guessed – NO HOMEWORK . Ebenezer Scrooge indeed! Merry Christmas to you all 🙂 .
Thank you so much for all the Christmas gifts, you have all been so generous and it is hugely appreciated. Mrs Cummins has also asked me to thank you on her behalf.
May I take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy Christmas and fruitful New Year. I hope you all have a lovely and restful break and I look forward to seeing you in January.
God Bless you all this Christmas time
Friday the 11th December 2020
Been another busy week. To be fair I could start all my blogs this way, but I am not complaining.
Disclaimer alert …there will be no art mentioned in this blog! My sleep patterns have not recovered from last week and is still keep finding glitter in my pockets. Besides we have D & T day next week to ‘look forward to’ as well. Still it is not about me but the children. I hope their stocking from last week has a pride of honour place in your household.
As I am sure you know the children recorded their Christmas song – Good King Wenceslas – on Tuesday and I am sure the option of a disk will be made available soon. They loved singing it and were as wonderful as I am sure you can expect.
In English we have started a new topic, that of explanation texts. Although we have looked at assorted natural, scientific and mechanical object texts as a focus, I hope to round it off next week with a Christmas theme. The children will design a toy making machine for Santa and write instructions for the elves that will be controlling it.
We have been finishing up and recalling topics in maths with a particular focus on times tables and, like last week, showing our knowledge through how we can depict different number statements as well as writing our own word problems to match the problems. The children are recognising the importance of key skills such as inverse and estimation to help them solve problems. We have a timed tables challenge task the children particularly love and each week they are keen to beat their own personal best and reduce the time they are given to complete them.
We rounded of our humanities subject of ‘Village Settlers’ with a task the children really enjoyed, especially as it had a bit of an arty element to it. Oh dear I mentioned the ‘a’ word again! Using their learning from the topic, the children designed and drew a bird’s eye map of a village, used a key to include symbols to represent buildings, farmland and other features and then some descriptions of their choices. They were excellent designs and rounded of the subject well.
I hope my wish last week of a carnage free Christmas preparation is coming to pass, yet if my plans are anything to go by I suspect not. Having Covid in our vicinity will of course influence who we visit and how we do so in terms testing negative etc but I am still hopeful of a family orientated Christmas. Having the challenge every year of thinking what to get my legion of nieces , nephews and God children is causing my usual levels of high blood pressure , extra challenging as they get older , and I have sent my imploring texts to their parents to get me a few hints. Who is still into unicorns or Minecraft? Who is beginning to focus on clothes, makeup and other such items? Still I do love Christmas.
Speaking of carnage …Tuesday the will be our rescheduled Cross Country run. Children will be required to bring in their PE Kit, preferably with tracksuit bottoms as well as it is very cold at the moment. Then on Wednesday will be both our Christmas Jumper Day and our Christmas Dinner. Thankfully not on the same day or running after the potatoes and mince pies…that WOULD be carnage!
Our RE topic linked well with my assembly this week which focused on ‘Peace at Christmas’. That is the topic for our RE module and this week also looks at the Second Advent candle – Peace. The children saw that wonderful Sainsburys advent based on the true event during WWI where the German and English soldiers came out of their trenches to share gifts and play football together to celebrate Christmas. A little peace in the heart of a terrible war. I hope we can all find a level of peace no matter what is going on in our lives.
Friday the 2nd December 2020
Why oh why do I do it to myself ? I thought that this afternoon we could have a nice quiet comprehension task or perhaps a mini maths assessment. Instead however I went for my favourite … art! So with a classroom abounding in tissue paper (not from my tears), glue , GLITTER (yes you heard that right) and colours we decided to make a Christmassy stocking. Don’t ask but I think I will be clearing glitter and glue out of my hair for a month, and with the amount of hair I have that is no mean feat.
Subjects have been motoring on, as us teachers are thinking about just how we could fit everything in from the curriculum before the bells toll 12 and the ghosts of Christmas come calling…or maybe that is just for me. I have been telling the children that our school days are going to extend over Christmas just to complete all our subjects. I think some of them believe me!
So what have my class of little Bob Cratchit’s been up to? This week we have wrapped up our work on Tobago and Gregory Cool and we have been writing an excerpt showing a day in the life of one of two characters. The children have written in character, and described settings that are of Tobogan origin all while meeting collective and individual grammar targets. I have observed some excellent work over shoulders and I look forward to marking them in detail over the next few days.
Maths lessons for my group have been all about expressing knowledge. We are acknowledging that sometimes actual methods are straightforward and we are comfortable with them, but what can we do with that knowledge? The children have been depicting equations dividing and multiplying by 10 and 100 in a variety of ways, they have focussed on the describing rather than the actual final answer and have looked at how the methods in our head can be used to solve a variety of questions.
Science lessons have focussed on coat hangers, balloons and chocolate. Okay well that is not all (although nothing surprises me in this classroom) but we have been looking at the theories behind differences in solids, liquids and gasses and what happens when changes are made to those states. The big questions this week were what happens when chocolate is melted and does air weigh anything? Lots of fun!
So Christmas is here, or almost. So that means in these strange times there will be no celebrations, carols, performances, Christmas cheer…Hey wait! This is St Stephens so of course there will!
Over the course of the last nine months or so I have actually watched Mr Schumm waiting for latest DFEE updates just to see what we could physically do at the school, keeping to government guidelines of course. So our term ended for the Year 6’s last year with a wonderful send off, not our normal way but still special all the same and this Christmas we are doing as much as we can once again. It is a shame we do not have the wonderful ‘Carols by Candlelight’ in its normal fashion, but it is great that we will have a show of sorts to show you and I must say the children singing ‘Good King Wenceslas’ today brought a tear to my eye. I understand there are amazing solo voices too. I hear those of you with children in lower years will have a chance to see their ‘Nativities’ in a more live fashion, so that is great too.
Whether Christmas is your thing or not, or if you are not fond to the build- up to the season, with all that goes on, it IS a special time of year. I have been telling the children in assemblies how important Advent is. Yes we are waiting for the celebration of the birth of Jesus when he came the first time, but also those of us who are Christians also believe we are looking forward to the second time he comes. Tomorrow’s assembly will be on the first Advent candle – that of HOPE. I hope we are all feeling that first stirring of hope about the news of the vaccine and hopefully we can all get a chance (if we wish it) of a belated Christmas present soon.
Finally our Christmas topic in RE is all about peace at Christmas, it’s message from God, and how Christmas brings us peace …amid all the stressful carnage of course!
As you think about how you will celebrate with loved ones this year I wish you as carnage free a Christmas as possible.
It has been a bit parky the last few days don’t you agree? Still not complaining I prefer the cold to rain and hot sun. I even conducted a school zoom assembly on Thursday in the playground while Mr Schumm was busy. The looks I got from passing children and staff while sitting by the adventure playground talking to a laptop! Still I had my big coat on and a cup of coffee so all was okay. Oh dear I am starting to sound like someone at a get together with nothing to say and end up talking about the weather!
Anyway on with the show so to speak. It has been another busy week and Christmas preparations are becoming more and more in evidence. Rev Denis and I have been looking at the lead up to Christmas from a Christian point of view and our assemblies have had an Advent theme which is of course all about the anticipation of the first Christmas and those of us who believe there will be a second coming of Jesus. The children have been given a ‘good deed’ advent calendar and our comprehension homework this week will be based upon the overall topic Advent.
In English we have been continuing our work on Gregory Cool and Tobago. The children, after completing their fact file, have also created a presentation on powerpoint around the island. They have really enjoyed it and have produced some very creative work on the subject. We have been pushing our spelling focus and have been encouraging the children to spend ten minutes a night practicing.
This afternoon the art pens and creative juices were flowing once again. Miss Amelie, a staff member who helps with 1:1 work and supports art clubs, gave up her afternoon to provide a wonderful task for the children linked with our English topic. The children created very colourful turtles, starfish and coconut trees. I hope to get some pictures for you soon.
Yesterday we had a really fun, yet very important, lesson for ‘Relationships and Health’ on the importance of personal space, the children’s rights in that regard and not to intrude on others personal space. The children reveled in the initial party atmosphere as we had an exercise that was basically like ‘musical chairs’ and discussed how we felt when our ‘island’ got a little crowded. We then looked at the importance of being able to ensure our space and our body is not infringed upon. Finally we came up with statements for our wall display that made these points clear. Then to round things off we had a proper game of musical statues with a ‘wispa bar’ as a prize…just because we could.
Homework this week will be the usual spellings, mathletics and as I said earlier it is also comprehension week. As Christmas is approaching, we also have our song to practice and although sadly we cannot have our carol concert, we will be recording the children singing their song. Ours is ‘Good King Wenceslas’ and the words are linked in the homework section.
Well that is the lot I think for this week. I have decided it will be the new me. Less coffee, healthy walks (try the All Trails app) healthy eating and only a little Netflix. I am all set up to go.
I will start next week!
Have a great weekend.
It has been another wet couple of days! Is it just me or has this autumn been wetter than normal? With lockdown rules restricting what we can do or who we can see at weekends I seem to be collecting wet and muddy trainers and walking shoes at my front door. My mop and bucket is also seeing more use than normal, but small problems I suppose. Saying that my Netflix shows or sports podcasts can somewhat distract me a little, but it is good to make you all think I am a domestic champion.
Anyway on with my next dazzling entry. Reminds me of the old James Herriot books (the show ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ are based on these) where each chapter is another incident in the life and times of a Yorkshire vet. How about the life and times of a Shepherds Bush primary school teacher? It has a nice ring don’t you think? I think we could change the name to ‘All Children Great and Small’.
I have put above our blog webpage our Year group bible verse (and stuck it in the inside cover of their h/w book). I would like them to learn it off by heart please. We promote in our school each year group having a spiritual gift and identity. We in year 4 look at TRUST. In RE we are starting to look at our Christmas module. Ours is titled ‘Peace at Christmas’ and we have begun by looking at the difference between internal and external peace. What brings us internal peace? Do we have a special place or activity we love?
In English we are looking at a book about a boy who goes to his grandparents’ home on the island of Tobago. It is called ‘Gregory Cool’ and the children have identified how and why life in Tobago was different to life in England from food and weather, to terrain and habitat. The children have worked this week on a fact file about Tobago through using research and will moving toward a narrative as though they are Gregory just arrived on the Island.
In maths my group have been using the skill of multiplying and dividing by 10, 100 and 1000 to help them to be able to convert metric measures. We have also learnt how to solve word problems on this topic by picking the key words, numbers and mathematical language out that helps them solve them. Their Mathletics homework will be based on this. Please encourage them to complete their tasks on time so Mrs Jeffrey and I do not have any little surprises waiting for us on Tuesday. Please send me a little email or note if your child is struggling with a particular task and we will go through it with them in school.
Homework this week will be the usual spellings, mathletics and a little art task by Cookie. I believe the best ones will be used to help advertise our menu for lunch over the weeks leading up to Christmas.
Thank you again to FOSS for always finding new ways in these uncertain times to raise money. I saw all the brown bags on the tables this week and my curiosity got the better of me and – after I asked my class – they all knew it was wine with a bit of salami. How did they know that? I also understand Mr Schumm’s re-imagining of scene from ‘When Harry Met Sally’ was quite a thing to remember at the quiz night! There is only one Mr Schumm that is for sure. Thank you again though to our very generous parents. Your support is truly wonderful.
I think that is my lot for today. As much as I would love to outline the amazing activity I have planned for the weekend to enrich and inspire my life…I won’t as it involves a muddy shoes, a T V show, a pie, copious amounts of coffee and probably a mope or two…or is that mop ?
Have a great weekend.
Friday 12th November 2020
Firstly thank you for all who came to the parents’ evenings. It was a pleasure talking to you and I would like to reiterate that I have really enjoyed the first term teaching your lovely children. They are a talented, bright and VERY lively bunch of children! It is interesting hearing some of the impressions the children feed back to you after getting to know me. Great titbits have included my coffee habit, my enthusiasm for history (where I have deduced I may talk too much ), my drawer that will have the odd kitkat lurking and my sense of humour – or lack of! It has been fun getting to know your children’s own unique characteristics too.
As well as parents evening we have been doing a little learning too. In our English lessons we have been wrapping our poetry work up with a poem about their magic box. We have looked at fun, creative and powerful ways to describe what we would have in our own personal boxes. The children have used all sorts of descriptive tools to bring to life their items which have included sunsets and ice cream on holiday destinations, favourite dishes from mums and grandmas, animals that have special meaning and much much more. It was fantastic to see how they joined items up by putting things together – such as an elephant on a beach at sunset drinking coffee – and found new and wonderful ways to describe them.
In other subjects we have continued our topic of ‘How we feel’ in our relationships and health topic. Yesterday the children looked at the difference between being unkind, teasing and bullying. We played out some sketches about pressure situations and where the pressure may come from – not always from the people actually involved and how it may cause uncomfortable situations. See photos above for some pictures of this lesson. We had great fun in our science lesson too as we looked at the differences between solids and liquids and how materials such as sand, salt and sugar may pour like liquid but are yet solid.
Today was another art fest! We rounded our work on ‘The Magic Box’ by…well by making a magic box of course! Why do I do this to myself? It is lovely though seeing the children’s faces light up when the word art is mentioned though, so I cannot complain. I look forward to the day when we can show you their work properly in the future. As I may have said once or twice they are a very talented bunch. Thank you to Mrs Cummins who put a lot of effort into preparing the afternoon and they are all looking excellent. I will keep them here this week and take a few pictures next week to put on the website.
We had an assembly this week on Remembrance Day and have looked at a few moving videos about why we have such a day – whether we believe in a just war or not. As a result the children’s reading comprehension homework will be based upon this.
Homework as always is to the right of this screen.
Okay I am shattered and a good Viking show is waiting for me at home on Netflix so I will sign off. Have a wonderful weekend.
Well we are back with a bang! Does anyone else feel as though they never had a holiday?
The children have this week been using inverse in their calculations to help them to check their written work and to understand the relationship between the operations. Starting with learning to break down two step addition/subtraction real life problems by recognising the important information (numbers and maths vocabulary ) , they have then learnt to use subtraction to help them check addition problem answers (and vice-versa). Towards the end of the week we moved towards a new subject – that of finding missing sides measurements in rectangles and then working out the shape’s perimeter. As always their Mathletics homework will be based around these subjects and my group are to learn their 8 times tables. Please help your children by encouraging them to practice regularly.
In English we are looking at poetry, starting with understanding some of the tools poets use – such as alliteration , similes, metaphors and repetition and rhyme. The children have looked at famous poems by poets including Benjamin Zephaniah, Lewis Carol and of course our own class poet T.S Eliot and picked out key words, phrases and styles. They are recognising that poetry can have slightly different rules to normal English texts including elements of culture and accent (Benjamin Zephaniah) made up words (The Jabberwocky by Lewis Carol) and an older style of language. As we moved through the week we began to look at the poem ‘The Magic Box’ and the children have begun to list and illustrate creative elements they would like to include within their own box. Next week they will write their own ‘Magic Box’ poem.
On that note we want to round off next week with an art lesson based around this subject and want the children to bring in a shoe box so they can create their own magic box.
In our other subjects we have begun new topics in Humanities and Science – Village Settlers and Changing State respectively. We have had mini assessments on the previous subjects of Electrical Circuits and Anglo Saxons as well. In RE we have a small two week subject (The Beatitudes) before we begin a Christmas module. Our topic this week was the teaching of Jesus at the Sermon of the Mount on the Beatitudes. We broke down what each one meant and then the children began to create their own with some wonderful examples such as ‘ Blessed are those that recycle , because they can protect the planet for themselves and future generations’ and Blessed are those that feed the homeless , because they shall have a reward in Heaven.
We have also been celebrating ‘Parliament Week’ with classes having various activities based around parliament and the right to vote – quite apt with all the goings on across the pond at the moment. As a school the children had the right to vote for a meal to be included in their menu, so Cookie laid out five boxes with pictures of five meals on them and the children chose with counters which one. In class we had debates in pairs about all sorts of subjects from banning school uniform to Gaming vs Outside Sports. We had a comprehension on the story of Guy Fawkes (apt for Parliament Week) and finally a class debate on the subject of having homework. We have a few pictures of this above.
We have kept homework fairly light this week with mathletics and spellings, but would encourage you to remind your children to be ongoing in your learning of their spellings, timetables and being engaged in regular reading.
A couple of last points before I let you go. Firstly thank you so much for your support in these troubling times as we try and give your children as rich a learning experience as possible. There will be plans that are made and changed (such as the cross country) but we will endeavour to give them as much an experience as possible. I pray you all stay healthy both mentally and physically in these times.
Last point – I look forward to seeing you all at the parent’s evening next week.
Have a wonderful weekend and a safe one (if you are doing anything with fireworks) and I will see you all next week.
With the first half of the term now over, we can all stop and take a breath. What an eventful few weeks it’s been: School council elections, Red Card to Racism day , Hispanic Day, Black voices Week, and our DT day. Even in a reduced timetable due to Covid we are still extremely busy it seems. It has been a pleasure getting to know your children during this time and I’m looking forward to the year ahead.
During Black Voices Week at St Stephen’s, we have been doing standalone lessons and have looked at the life of Walter Tull. Walter was the first black officer to lead white soldiers in the British army (during WW1) and the second black professional football player (he played for Tottenham Hotspur). Just through our research, as well as Mr Schumms assembly yesterday, his strength, resilience and determination simply shone through. He suffered verbal abuse and a fight to be respected all his life, yet still pushed on and achieved great things, eventually giving his life for his friends and country. We also looked at the book ‘Look Up’ as well which was written about a little girl who always looked up. Yes her passion was astronomy, so looking at the stars was a normal thing for her, but there was another message within that about always looking up and forward and keep pushing on to achieve, despite the obstacles we might face. The children then created their own mini booklet on the same theme.
Yesterday was our half-termly ‘Design and Technology’ day. Sometimes I feel I am the only person in my family that does not have an ounce of savvy with creating things with my hands but with the guidance of our new school art leader – Miss Hall – and the wondrous help of Miss Cummins…and Miss Tracey…and Miss Kaisa…and Mrs Jeffrey we muddled on! Hey even Miss Tami our needle work expert popped by in the afternoon with some sage advice. Anyway, as you know, the title of the day was creatively called ‘Bag Day’. With all the t-shirts (thank you btw for the extras donated), and plastic bags in the class it began to look at first like one of my old cub scouts jumble sales. With a design in place and needles and scissors at the ready we got cracking. To be fair we did not suffer too many pricked fingers or tears (and I promise I stopped crying after the first tearful mishap with a pin) as we turned our t-shirts into holdall bags. The children had fun and they did very well. Phew glad that one was over, well at least until autumn 2 term anyway.
Homework is on your right of the screen for half term. Please I would ask if you could support me in helping the children be organised in both completing homework as well as not losing it or not packing it into their school bags. We have been getting a few more cases of this lately than normal.
May I finish by saying that I hope you have a great break and I look forward to seeing all the children refreshed after half-term. Pictures of D & T day are above.
Our week was dominated this week by two of our big extra curriculum school events – Hispanic Day and Red Card to Racism Day, but more on that later!
We’re all exhausted after another busy week! In English, the children have continued working on developing their grammar and sentence work. They have looked at fronted adverbials and how they help put a sentence into context and at determiners that help a reader identify the nouns. We are leading on to a writing a chapter about our current muse – ‘Varjak Paw’ – a book we have all been enjoying immensely. There is a little grammar homework to complete this week – see over.
In my Maths group, the children showed me what they have been learning by completing a mini assessment on place value and they have shown me excellent progress in that regard. We are moving on to long addition and subtraction next week.
We have been motoring forward in our History, RE and science topics as well. The children had great fun yesterday putting together various circuits based on their theories they have learnt last week. They are indeed an excitable bunch. They certainly let me know when a circuit had come together so to speak! Have a look at the photos.
In RE the children have been continuing to focus on the theme of ‘What is a Buddhist?’ . The last few lessons have been looking at how Buddhists are taught to set a ‘good example’ to others and to always be kind. Kindness and a role model is definitely something we promote in St Stephens and the children were also able to compare how this teaching can coincide and agree with other faiths as well. They created their own ‘recipe’ for a good person as well as listing their on top four rules for a person to follow.
Today was Hispanic day and our class is representing Puerto Rico. We had a brief lesson on Puerto Rico geography and culture. The children then created a fun fact file by using laptops, library books and assorted flip charts to show key food, monuments, people and art from that country. After lunch, we discussed how a particular type of Frog is the national animal and then the children designed their own patterns and colour schemes for a painting of a frog in the colours of the Puerto Rican flag. On top of that the children had a dance workshop with Annabel looking at a particular form of Hispanic Dancing.
Red Card To Racism Day
Yesterday there was a sea of red in the school in honour of the initiative from the football leagues – Red Card to Racism. The children looked at a touching video put together by the group for assembly and we had a number of discussions and activities throughout the day about what racism is and how it is manifested – even in ways not so obvious. We learnt that having jokes at peoples expense about race, colour, religion and indeed many other situations from disabilities, wearing glasses/braces is NEVER ‘just banter’ and that we should all respect each other. It is wonderful that we can have days like this in school, but equally to understand it is not just about the ‘day’ but about how we treat each other on a daily basis.
Finally as our country continues to go through changes to lifestyle due to the virus and necessary government restrictions, for many to income loss and to mental health issues as well. I wish you all peace and God’s Blessings.
I am grateful we have such a wonderful community at St Stephens and that so many work so hard to keep that community functioning in these tough times. To FOSS for your wonderful support in continuing to raise funds so we can have such days as Hispanic Day, Family Supper at home and the special extracurricular events coming in the future. For the staff who not only work their normal school day (well nothing is normal these days ) but also the extra effort I know that goes in to running clubs, organising special school days and above all keeping the children’s and each other’s spirit’s up. This is a wonderful school to be a part off, from working in other schools trust me I know! St Stephens is a true blessing.
Next week is Black Voices Week at St Stephens so here is a look at the story we are going to be focusing on in Year 4.
Have a wonderful weekend and kind regards.
PS Homework as always is on the right of your screen.
We’re all exhausted after another busy week! In English we have started looking at our new topic of fictional writing. We have looked at the difference between where we put apostrophes depending on how many items or people we are talking about and have spent time learning how to use a dictionary properly. As part of the topic we have been reading a book ‘Varjak Paw’ which the children have been enjoying immensely. They have been using evidence to predict what will happen next (making excellent comparisons so far with classics such as ‘101 Dalmatians’ and ‘The Lady and the Tramp’.
In Maths, the children in my group have been consolidating their knowledge on place value looking at counting ahead in 1000s and 25s and spotting patterns within the numbers. The latter part of the week has included work on negative numbers (of which my group will have written homework as well as mathletics) to complete over the week. It was lovely to round our mathematical week off by bringing in a little history by looking at Roman numerals.
On that note here is a little note from Mr Gane who is our school Maths leader regarding Mathletics.
From Mr Gane
Can I please ask parents and carers to make sure that your children complete their Mathletics homework. We do not want to go back to setting work on paper. The children should be: reading the questions online; accessing the animated ‘help’ if required; working out their answers on rough paper; entering in their final answers. While Mrs Bouwman does run a Mathletics Homework club on Thursday lunchtimes, this is primarily aimed at children who might have difficulty accessing the internet at home. There is not capacity for 20+ Y6s or Yr 4s who have left their ‘homework’ until the last minute. Thanks indeed for your help and understanding on this matter.
Other subjects have included continuing our topic of electricity in science, where the children have looked at the difference between objects that use mains electricity and those that have batteries. We have looked at the dangers and the absolute ‘no nos’ of behavior around electrical power sources. I am sure many of you parents are of an age as me, and It was interesting recalling and explaining to the children the computer suites from school with the green screens (and no pictures), the first proper home PCs followed by briefcase sized laptops. There were also the VHS videos our class teachers showed us about the dangers of electric pylons and generators. I remember the flared trousers and chequered shirts of the actors in the films! Boy am I old! Still the point about safety is still the same and the children designed their own safety posters around electricity.
We do have a ‘Family Supper’ which is wonderful. As we are getting to the new normal of social distanced events and gatherings we may as well join the party at St Stephens. Cookie has been working hard getting little packs together of ingredients so we can all share the same meal online together. These events can be fun! During the lockdown I had countless family dinners chatting online and with my film club we organised film nights from our own homes watching the same film, with the same food and chatting online as we did so. I hope you can get involved in the Family Supper.
On Thursday 15th October, we have ‘Red Card to Racism’ day for the third year in a row. All children are encouraged to come in and where something red to show their allegiance to the anti-racist movement. We will be having a special (streamed) assembly and all children will carry out an anti-racism activity in their classes. Next term, our ‘Relationships and Health Education’ learning unit is ‘Valuing Difference’, which will continue the conversation from Thursday. We can’t collect with the buckets this year due to Covid but should you wish to/are able to donate via text.
Please text ‘RED’ to 70470 to give £1, ‘RED5’ to give £5, ‘RED10’ to give £10 or ‘RED20’ to give £20 if you are able to.
Please see alongside for homework.
Have a wonderful weekend and kind regards.
It is the end of another busy week at St Stephen’s. In Maths my group has been focusing on counting on and back in 10s 100s and 1000s. We have looked at what happens when we add and subtract those numbers that cross the barrier. We have also continued to look at solving problems around greater and lesser symbols. We will be moving from next week on to the seven times tables. As we discuss in class the old motto ‘practice makes perfect’ this is no truer than with times tables and the children should practice for ten minutes a day. We have mathletics homework based upon this set today.
We have been loving our humanities topic of the Anglo Saxons. The children have been researching, illustrating and writing up theories on Anglo Saxon life and practices. There have been some fantastic examples of work.
Speaking of fantastic …we have finished our topic this week on the Iron Man. I have been so impressed with the quality of the persuasive letters produced in the class. The children have given solid and powerful reasons for keeping him imprisoned (or releasing him) with all the features of the framework of persuasive writing included. I am really starting to realise just how bright this class is. Homework is similar to a task they looked at this week in describing the Iron Man. This time they are to choose a family member, teacher or friend and find new descriptive words to describe them.
In terms of spellings, we had a chat today and many children honestly told me that they only looked at the spellings when they were writing the sentences. Like the times tables , the only way they will truly go in and for the children to be confident in them is if they practice and they have agreed in spending ten minutes a day looking at their spellings. I hope you will support us in encouraging this.
It has been a wet and miserable day today, but we have managed to cope (that glass of wine and Netflix is beginning to call to me though ) and have had some fun doing so by having a drama lesson with Mark and an art lesson drawing cave painting art…What fun! We even managed our PE lesson with Alastair in the classroom, I say we… I managed a sharp exit for that one! Once again it showed me just what talented children you have.
I hope your weekend does not become too wet and bedraggled and I will see you next week.
It has been a busy week in Year 4. We have all been getting used to our daily routines and systems and the children have been adapting well. Well done to all for settling in and getting stuck into life as a Year 4 child. I have been getting used to them, but equally they have been getting used to me so probably equally challenging 😉
My group in maths this week have continued working on place value and we have been looking at organising numbers in order and solving problems using the greater and less than signs. Homework on matheletics will reflect their learning. In English we are looking at developing our sentence structure using expanded noun phrases, checking our punctuation and reminding ourselves of correct homophone spellings. We had our weekly spelling test today.
In Science we have been begun looking at electricity and the concept of human and natural made energy. Circuits are always a fun topic and the children have begun to learn about the components and parts of a working circuit.
It is weeks like this at school that can really bring home the fact we have a pandemic and by necessity need to do things differently. Normally it is around this time we have the Family Supper, Harvest Festival and the children in Year 6 head off to PGL. I am partly grateful for our existing health and the support around us, but can also feel a little sad too about the changes we all experience. The children are learning that it is okay to feel sad sometimes, as long as they do not hold it in.
On that note, please look out for a letter from me regarding the Harvest Festival to all the parents about what we are doing this year and suggestions for donations.
Another important focus this week is what we as staff and in turn the children will do if we have another lockdown (either national or local) or if our Year 4 bubble has to go home to isolate. With the rising cases we hear about in the news, it is important to be aware that this cannot be ruled out in the future. The children have looked at logging back into google classrooms, teachers will register them as well as occasionally teach a lesson online. Mr Schumm and Mr Faith will keep you informed regarding what systems we will have in place. I believe it is important that the children are confident, aware and are able to log in to google classroom.
Homework this week will be the usual spellings, reading comprehension and online Mathletics.
There are a couple in the year group who are behind in Mathletics and so would appreciate if children caught up.
Have a great weekend and kind regards.
Did we have a summer holiday? When was it? It seems so far away…cue a bit of winging and sobbing in a corner…followed by a large glass of wine!
These past few weeks (and over the half term) I am getting to know the children’s learning habits through classroom activities, informal assessments and looking at their gaps, particularly in light of missing so much of the Year 3 curriculum due to Covid. These do not count in any way in a formal manner, but purely as a way of helping them recall learning and for me to look at how I can support them better. Don’t be alarmed if your child moves into different class groups and there may be movement in the maths classes in the coming weeks as Mrs Jeffrey and I get to know the children.
We have started our maths and English topics in earnest. In maths, my group have looked at face value, understanding the value of parts of four digit numbers and what happens to them when we add to or subtract from those numbers. Finally toward the end of the week we have looked at what happens to numbers when we round them to the nearest 10 or 100 and the rules that inform the method. We have also continued our work on the 6 times tables (there will be an informal test next week). My group have some maths stuck into their homework books and a little on Mathletics to help show their learning.
Homework – Please see opposite for the homework which will be spelling, comprehension and math’s.
In RE we have completed some work looking at our class spiritual word –Trust. The children have written prayers and created a front page with their bible verse in their RE books based on their idea of Trust in each other, close family and most importantly – God. We also have started our worldwide religious topic on understanding what Buddhism is and where it started , by looking at the story of Prince Siddhartha – who of course went on to later become The Buddha.
Today we held class elections for school council. The children voted for who would be our school council. Well done to all those who went for it.
Speaking of elections, we also saw the videos and presentations prepared by the Year 6s and voted for the house captains. As a prior Year 6 teacher I know how important these elections are and told my class just how the confidence of many house captains have risen as a result of being elected, the amazing fund raising they have been a part of and the pivotal role they have in school daily life. The children took the responsibility of voting very seriously and I am sure they have made excellent choices.
Just to round off I would like to say your children are certainly a group full of character and energy. I see myself having a long bath before sinking into my couch every Friday when the week ends with a glass of wine and a box set on Netflix as I try to recover ;). Seriously though they are wonderful children and I am having great fun teaching them. They are a credit to you!
Dear Parents ,
This will be short as I am planning to head home to collapse on my sofa and catch up on one of my favourite historical fiction shows!
The first week back with the children can often be shattering, but in the same way very rewarding. I am starting to get to know your children and I look forward to continuing to do so over the coming weeks and months. They are quite a bunch of characters that is for sure 🙂 .
Well done to Conrad, Rose and Lolly as our stars of the week. They were chosen not just for fitting in so well to their new class and school, but also for individually showing me just some of their positive talents. They will be great for this school and for Class Eliot!
Just a few notes before I go. I hope you are now aware of our timetable and know that for this term we have three sports sessions, so the children will need to be in PE kits Monday, Tuesday and Friday.
Library books are changed every two weeks and the children will be in two groups of 15. They will attend a library session with Mrs Pereira every other week.
Homework will start this week and will be due in every Tuesday. On a normal week it will be very similar to what they would be used to from Year 3.
They will have spellings where the sentences will be written in their homework books and we will have a test every Thursday. They will usually get a comprehension or some work related to our Science and Humanity topics and we will set Mathletics online for our math’s groups. The comprehension should also be completed by Tuesday and the Mathletics for my group by Thursday.
Phew glad I got that out of the way. Please do not hesitate to contact me on my email. I usually check them in the morning of a school day first thing and throughout the day until around 6 or 7 pm. I promise I will not ignore you though 🙂
Have a great weekend.
Welcome to Year 4 Eliot!
I hope you had a wonderful summer holiday and are ready to start the new school year. It is of course a fresh start for all of us, as I too am in new territory teaching Year 4 after nine years in Year 6. I always loved teaching Year 4 (I taught Year 4s for five years before going to year 6) and they are at a lovely age in their development and also they begin to get my humor (or lack of) as well. It is fantastic once again to meet new families, siblings of old students and to welcome our three new children. We are all in this together as we start our year 4. I look forward to getting to know your children (and you of course) in the coming weeks and months ahead.
Miss Kaisa has been wonderfully helpful over the last few days and we thank her. She will be moving on to other challenges soon and we welcome a new member of staff who will be our TA – Miss Cummins. She has over twenty years’ experience as a TA and is a welcome member of the Year 4 team. As I am sure you are aware – Miss Tracy will be working next door with Mrs Jeffrey.
They have begun today sharing about themselves by creating a coat of arms that represent them and have included with them topics such as family, interests and talents. They have learnt a bit more about me and my interests, hobbies and expectations. I look forward to hearing more about their own summer and what they love to do in their play time. In light of the times we live in, we have also discussed what would be the same and what would be different in school because of new and ever changing Government guidelines about keeping us all safe. The children have been following the new guidelines sensibly.
Our timetable will look similar to previous Year 4 timetables and the new timetable will be published on this blog in the next day or so. In Maths – Year 4 will be split into two groups. I will be teaching the more independent group and Mrs Jeffrey will be teaching the other group supported by additional adults. On Mondays (Gymnastics), Tuesdays (Cricket) and Fridays (PE – Kick London) the children should come into school in their PE clothes which they will keep on for the rest of the day. Having cricket is a wonderful bonus the children have once a year for half a term, this term being our turn. The weather looks fine and warm this week but make sure your child has long track suit trousers/joggers and a school cardigan or jumper for the cooler days ahead. There will be no trips planned until further notice.
Reading books will not be issued this week but will go out every Monday and should be returned by Friday when they will be ‘quarantined’. Children will visit the school library every 2 weeks for 15 minutes only. Homework will be issued every Friday and should be returned by Tuesday. Mathletics tasks are part of the weekly homework and should be completed weekly.
I am looking to meeting you all properly but at the moment, all adults are encouraged to leave the school site as soon as you have picked up your children. Please do email me with any questions. If you would like to discuss anything in detail – we can arrange a face-to-face meeting or a Zoom call.
My email is email@example.com
Our words this week are mixed again. Some of which we have looked at in the past. There are instructions on the sheet that ask you to write sentences that include subordinating and coordinating conjunctions.
We have a short assessment next week (Wednesday) based on our times tables so the children should be practicing them for at least 20 minutes a day.
The class teachers will add mathletics on the system for the children to complete.
You have been working really hard on learning how to tell the time and my group have also been converting to 12 hour digital clocks as well. We hope you enjoy the watches. Your homework will be mathletics tasks based on time and we are recapping some work we did in autumn on Perimeter of rectangles.
You have spelling words that are a bit of a mixture of words we can often get a few letters mixed up or confused’ . See sheet for instructions but we really want you to practice understanding your verb past and present tenses as well. So your sentences should reflect that.
This weeks text is based on an excellent text called ‘The Mango Tree’. Remember all answers come from or are based upon information in the text.
I have posted some tasks around previous subjects and a starting point for our next one (Time). Mrs Jeffrey has placed some similar tasks for her group.
Here are this weeks spellings. As usual please write neatly and try and be creative with your sentences .
These are based around words that use possessive apostrophes and are ‘Shun’ words.
Half term task
I want you to write about an event/day out in half term with an illustration. If you had a quiet time then please thinks of a day in the past.
I have posted some quests and tasks around the subject of Money on google classroom for my group . Mrs Jeffrey has placed some similar tasks for her group.
As we have been doing poetry this week based mainly on nature , this task is a comprehension based on a poem on a dragon fly. Where necessary do not forget ADD QUOTES from the text to back up your opinions and views.
Here are this weeks spellings. As usual please write neatly and try and be creative with your sentences .
These are homophones so although the spellings are very straightforward for most of them it is important you understand the correct meaning and to remember for future writing tasks.
Mathletics has been set and is ready to go. It was brilliant that I did not have to chase anyone up to complete last week. Keep it up 🙂
Please see below the spellings for the week. We are looking at prefixes and how they change the words. Once again please ensure neat handwriting and creative sentences.
RHE – I am Special!
I want you to do a poster about your self. You are pretending you are nominating yourself for an award showing off just how wonderful you are! Promote your talents and the characteristics your friends and family most find special about you.
This week we are looking a group of Year 4 curriculum spellings that do not have particular pattern.
Again do not rush your sentences and use this as an opportunity to practice your handwriting as well. We have been looking at simple and compound sentences in English this week so please look carefully at the instructions for the work.
There are a few different tasks this week. I have set for my group some end of unit mini assessments based on our arithmetic skills and how we are doing with our times table knowledge. Mrs Jeffrey would have set tasks based around her class focus.
This week we have begun our learning on our new history topic – The Mayan Civilization. I have put in a task based around the Mayan Codices along with facts about other ancient writing.
This week, we have celebrated ‘Earth Day’. This is a great day where we take a moment to acknowledge how we treat this beautiful planet we are lucky enough to call home. As part of your homework activity, we would like you to do one of the following and then write in your homework book/on the assigned google classroom document what you did and draw/upload a picture of you completing this activity.
Go for a walk or cycle (or scoot) instead of using a car.
Plant something in a pot for your windowsill or garden.
Use public transport (if you feel it is safe to do so) instead of a private car.
Create a recycling system at home.
Create a simple bug hotel with a plastic bottle, twigs and leaves (here is a link with some ideas) http://www.gardenplotters.org.uk/making-a-simple-bug-hotel You will need an adult to help you cut the bottles.
Draw around your foot on a piece of (scrap) paper and in side your drawing list some ways you will help the environment – stick this up somewhere you will see every day. For example you could ensure the lights are turned off when they’re not being used, turn the tap off while you’re brushing your teeth or be mindful of buying less plastic wrapped items – we’re excited to see what you come up with!
Use this as an opportunity to work on our writing targets as well. When doing your sentence work I want to see your best handwriting, thoughtful vocabulary ( obviously using the spelling words) and check your punctuation as well.
For my group I have some work on what we have been doing this week (ordering decimals ) and some end of topic questions to recap previous topics.
We are noticing that there are a lot of spelling mistakes with word containing double consonants so we have put some examples up to learn. Think about other examples we use in our writing regularly that we could learn to spot.
Your teachers will have set examples of work we have taught or that needs a revisit. Please remember to have these done by Tuesday morning.
As today is St Georges Day I have placed some reading comprehension on both google classroom and on the website around St Georges Day.
This week we are looking at ‘atian’ words and I would advise we check ( and use ) the words we are not sure of. I would like the children to be very proactive writing creative sentences, checking punctuation and editing sentence structure.
To those children still behind I would advise you to keep chipping away at the tasks to catch up. They are ready to go on Mathletics.
Science and Geography task.
Have a look at the food in your cupboard and fill out the table below. There are four points to look at .
a) what is the food?
b) What country does it come from?
c) What other foods does it go well with?
d) Is it good for you?
This week we have been extremely cross curricular with the topic of rainforests. Our comprehension is a non -fiction text on that subject.
These are topical words related to our learning this week Once again I would like the children to be very proactive writing creative sentences, checking punctuation and editing sentence structure.
As I said last week this can often be ‘forgotten’ or missed. Both Mrs Jeffrey and I have given children gentle reminders today on the need to ensure it is done. We have put work on mathletics based on our class learning over the last week.
Have a great weekend.
Homework can be found and should be uploaded on Google Classroom.
I really want us to get back into taking care with all our writing , not just what we do in our English books. Please write creative sentences using the spelling words with accurate punctuation.
This week we have been looking at inspiring and pioneering women for ‘International Women’s Day’. Thee children have heard assemblies from Mr Schumm and myself and have been listening daily to videos from Miss Mahon about assorted ladies who have been both inspiring and pioneers. I want the children to use the fact file template below to research and create their own profile of a woman who has inspired others.
This can often be ‘forgotten’ or missed. Both Mrs Jeffrey and I have put work on mathletics based on our class learning over the last week and latter weeks in lockdown. These should be completed by Monday night.
Have a great weekend.
From me to you NO HOMEWORK . Merry Christmas and a Happy New year
Design, draw and label a Santa sleigh. Ensure he has all he needs for his very long and special night on Christmas Eve. What extra gadgets will you include? How will the reindeer fit into the sleigh? Does he have a special present delivery system?
Remember this is homework so although I hope it is fun you HAVE to do it. You can use the template below or go it alone on separate paper.
A quick note to say we are finding a number of children are clearly rushing homework and not putting as much effort into your sentences. I know the priority is ten minutes practice a night , but I also require quality writing as well, that meets your English targets. So please write detailed and challenging sentences for your spellings this week.
We are consolidating knowledge at the moment so there will be tasks around times table and corresponding division facts and addition and subtracting methods.
Good king Wenceslas
Keep on practicing. You all sound amazing.
Please keep working at your English targets as you write. Not just the spellings themselves and remember 10 minutes a night practicing.
My group have been assigned some work based on a few weeks back – long subtraction – to see if they remember the strategies. I have also set a task on ‘Pyramid puzzles’ where the children have to use those adding and subtraction skills to complete little pyramids. As we are really concentrating on times tables at the moment I have also assigned tasks on 6 & 7 times tables facts. Mrs Jeffrey will have assigned her own work on class focuses.
Children will be tested on the verse next week so it must be learnt off by heart.
Please start learning the words of this oldie but goodie Christmas Carol ‘ Good King Wenceslas’. They will be recorded week of December 7th.
As we have been looking at Advent in assemblies and some year groups are talking about it in Year 4 I thought I would base our comprehension homework this week on Advent . Below are both word and pdf versions of the homework.
Focus is on the sheet . Please download and read carefully. I am really focusing on handwriting too at the moment. So take your time when writing the sentences and remember you must do 10 minutes practice a night even after you have handed book in.
There will be homework based on class learning for both groups on mathletics and as always the times table focus will be on the spelling sheets. Mrs Jeffrey has added another task based on the 6 times table.
There is an art task sheet in the children’s books. This is based around Cookies Christmas menu.
As always using the trickier words is important to understand them as well as staying focused on our English targets of sentence structure, spellings (not just our weekly ones) and punctuation, our focus this time is HANDWRITING. Something we talk about a lot. We also recognsee homework can be rushed sometimes as well. So take your time and be as clear and neat as possible.
Work will always be based upon the work we have been doing in class or on work that we have learnt that will benefit other tasks set.
Spellings will be all on words with Tion and Cian sounds at the end. As always please choose five words that are trickier for their sentences. I have also spoken to the children today about the importance of practicing spellings ten minutes a day. Many admitted they only looked at them when writing their sentences.
Time table focus for the groups are on the spelling sheet and my group have Mathletics tasks on long addition.
Please can you provide your child with a shoe box or a box of a similar style and size for art next week to round of our work on the Magic Box.
We all have Mathletics set by your maths teacher. Please log on in the normal way to complete.
Mr Perry’s group.
I have attached two pieces of work to complete in the holidays. The sheet on Roman numerals is optional as a little problem solving activity you might enjoy.
The long subtraction and addition sheet is not optional. You have also looked at what to do if there are missing numbers in class so should be confident with them. There are three challenge questions at the bottom to cover this. Please download the work and complete the questions in your homework book. Also I want you to be confident in your 6 & 7 times tables. we are looking at the 8 times tables after half term.
Please find attached the comprehension on Black Voices Matters. These should be completed in your book.
We also have our spellings as well. Please practice those you may have got wrong in your last spelling test.
Remember you only get homework because I care 🙂 !
Spelling and Fronted Adverbials
This words are based around prefix’s . Please see sheet below.
I want to see ‘Fronted Adverbials’ that we have been learning in English , included in all your spelling sentences. See the examples on the sheet.
There will be no additional work this week in our books. So please complete the Mathletics work set and work on your times tables.
Mrs Jeffreys group – 3 and 6 times table
Mr Perry’s group – Practice 6 and continue learning 7 times tables.
Here again is the link Miss Bell has asked us to look up in preparation next week for Black Voices Week
Subject: Look Up
Both groups have Mathletics set based around work we have been doing in class.
Mrs Jeffrey’s group have some additional sheets in their books on Roman Numerals and my group have work based around negative numbers.
Spellings will follow as normal. Please read the instructions on the attached sheet. A reminder the children should write sentences around the words they are not so sure about.
Comprehension sheet is attached as normal. Please complete the questions around the Poem about Autumn. You can either print of the sheets or write answers in your books.
An-Ode-to-Autumn-homeworkWALK WITH US ON W/C 5 OCTOBER!
Get your happy feet on, it’s time to celebrate.
St Stephens has decided to take part in the greatest national Walk to School celebration, where pupils and grown-ups around the UK unite for one week of walking to school. Each pupil will be challenged to walk, cycle, scoot or park and stride to school every day for one week
Our five-day walking challenge aimed to be fun and engaging all week long, raising awareness and celebrating walking for all. Pupils will be well on their way to reaching their recommended 60 minutes minimum of physical activity per day before even reaching the school gates! Not only will it set them up for a positive day in the classroom, it will also help create healthy habits for life.
This year we invite you to join us in celebrating the incredible physical and mental health benefits walking brings to every individual.
Strong hearts, healthy bones, increased muscle strength are all well-documented outcomes of walking, but the benefits for the mind are just as powerful. Increased sense of calm and self-esteem, time to connect with friends, family and the natural world, awakened creativity and improved overall cognitive function! All that makes for a happy, healthy child set up for success in and out of the classroom.
Class teachers will be awarding daily house points to all those who walk, cycle, scoot or park and stride into school next week. Mr Schumm will announce the class winners in next Friday’s Stars of the Week Assembly. So check out the weather, waterproofs or wellies, cycles or scooters, jumpers and jackets – join us for Walk to School next week.
Carrying on from class learning and looking at our next fiction topic. Our goal is learning new powerful words and using them with skills including alliteration , expanded noun phrases and similes. The children have a sheet stuck into their homework book.
We are setting homework based on the learning in class and our Place value topics. We are also continuing to practice our times tables. I want to move on to the 7 times table from next week so we should all be confident now with the 6 times tables.
As I mentioned in my blog , we have all agreed to spend ten minutes a day to help the spellings go in . It was obvious last week this had not happened. Here are the spellings.
All homework due on Tuesday 30th September 2020.
Please find the link below of this weeks spellings. This time we are focussing on words beginning with ir, ill, and im, and in.
As before please choose the trickier words to write sentences about.
Please look closely at the key words in the questions which could include words such as ‘infer’, ‘compare’ and ‘summarise’. Double check you have answered the question in the correct way.
This text is based upon the topic we have been studying in Humanities at the moment – Sutton Howe and the Anglo Saxons.
There are four sets of questions for my group and three for Mrs Jeffreys. Please ensure you do not do more than that, as we will use them for future homework’s, although you are more than welcome to go on the maths games and activities on the Mathletics website after.
Work will be based on class learning.
All homework due on Tuesday 22nd September please. Spelling tests will usually be on a Friday.
For spellings this week I have asked the children to choose the trickier words to use in their spelling sentences so they can understand their context. Especially important as we are looking at homophones again.
Reading to be completed in their books again on the text from Michael Rosen please. We have not given them the sheets in their books as we are doing our bit (when we can) for the rain forests.
My math’s group to be practicing their 6 times tables.
Both the teachers have stuck work related to their learning in their books. These are to be completed for Tuesday please.
Mathletics has been set for our groups based on class learning in the week.
To be completed in their homework books. They will be informed of their spelling groups which may change over the coming weeks.
Questions to be completed in their
For the next few weeks we are concentrating on our time tables. The children have their Mathletics log ins and there are tasks set for them.