Archive – 2013/2014 – Year 4

Autumn Term 2013


back to school

Welcome back to another exciting year of learning in Year 4!

It was fantastic to see so many smiling little faces returning to school last week after a safe and enjoyable summer break.  I have been hearing all about Y4’s ‘Grand Days Out’ and it made me tired just listening to them!  It certainly sounds like they, and their families, had a busy but very exciting holiday!

Over the last 2 weeks the whole school as been working on a mini topic inspired by unleashed.  I was totally impressed with the range and quality of home learning that took place over the summer and the way in which the children shared their learning with such enthusiasm.  We had everything from diaries of great days out to giant vegetables grown by the children.  The children will shortly be presented with certificates for their efforts and their work is on display in and around the classroom.  There are also photographs on the Y4 blog showing the learning we have enjoyed in school during this project.  Thank you to families for supporting the children during this project.  Crackin’ job!







Our main topic for this term is called I’m a Survivor and will see the children learning lots of skills in school which they can apply in the real world.  Their end of term goal is to spend two nights ‘surviving’ away from home at Cranham Scout Centre on our Y4 residential trip.  This experience will give the children’s learning a real sense of purpose and hopefully ignite a sense of having something to work towards.  You will have a received a letter with the details of this trip and you can also find an electronic copy below.

As always, it is essential that the children steer their own learning.  With this in mind, the children and I spent some time planning the topic together and putting together our Learning Journey.  The topic overview can be found below although please be aware that this is very likely to change and evolve as we get stuck into the topic.  The home learning grid to accompany the topic is also posted below.  Please note that this year I have set aside specific dates for the children to bring in and share their home learning.  These dates can be found in the welcome letter, which also contains some useful ‘housekeeping’ information, an electronic copy of which is also posted below.

lit fest

This year, for the first time ever, each class will be given the opportunity to go to the Cheltenham Literature Festival which takes place from 4-13 October.  It is hoped that by taking part in workshops led by inspiring and often high-profile figures in the literary world, the children will develop their sense of reading for pleasure as well as the notion that good readers go on to become good writers.

Years 3 and 4 will be going to the festival on Friday 4th October to take part in a workshop called Comedy Capers with Jeremy Strong.  Jeremey has written several children books including the My Brother’s Famous Bottom series, The Hundred Mile an Hour Dog series and The Cartoon Kid.

The cost of this trip will be £5.00 per child and can be paid via ParentPay in the normal way.  The coach will leave school at 12:00 and we will return by the end of the school day.  All children will need a packed lunch as we will leave before the school kitchen opens for hot lunches.


Tuesday 24th September – Green Day.  Children may wear bright neon colours to school and the day will focus on the environment and doing our bit for the planet.  Further details in the newsletter.

Thursday 26th September – European Day of Languages.

Friday 4th October – Year 3/4 Literature Festival visit.

Thursday 10th October – Non uniform day – bring a bottle

Monday 14th October – INSET day.

Friday 18th October – Harvest festival.  More details nearer the time.

Tuesday 5th November – Y4 Residential Trip information evening.  7pm in the Y4 classroom.

Friday 8th November – Peter Pan pantomine in school.

Monday 11th November – Parents evening.

Wednesday 13th November – Parents evening.

Wednesday 20th NovemberFriday 22nd November – Y4 Residential.

Friday 29th November – INSET day.

Letterbox stuffed with mail

Welcome Letter Autumn 2013

Topic Overview

Y4 Residential Letter 2013

Year 4 Home Learning Autumn 2013 – I’m a Survivor

Year 3/4 Cheltenham Literature Festival letter


Documents to help you to support learning at home.

At parents’ evening, some parents suggested that they would like to know a little more about what the children are learning in Reading, Writing and Maths to enable them to better support the children at home.  I hope that the following documents will compliment the topic home learning grid and allow those children who wish to do more at home to push themselves a little more.

Ideas for writing 1

Ideas for writing 2

VCOP pyramids

Key questions for reading

Mr Rickaby Spellings Autumn Term

Miss Clements’ Group Spellings Autumn

Securing level 2 Maths

Securing level 3 Maths

Securing Level 4 Maths

Securing level 5 Maths

Spring Term 2014
Happy New Year!

Welcome back to school and an exciting Spring term of learning.  I hope that the children and their families all had a happy and safe festive break and are as excited as I am about what this term has in storyoung apprenticee.
We are very grateful for the continued support of the 4 parent volunteers who will continue to hear children read 9.00-9.30 this term.  This support means that all children can be heard read weekly and enjoy the benefits of sharing a book.  If any other parents or carers would be willing to spare half an hour a week, I would love to hear from you.  As always the children can change their books whenever necessary.  There is a selection of books in the classroom as well as those in the school library.
This term one of our PE sessions will be with Mr Lott, our PE specialist.  As always, days will change with the weather so having a PE kit in school all week is essential.  Similarly, we would like to make use of the outdoor area much more this term, so having a pair of trainers or wellies in school all week really is a must.
The class Free Writing book will continue to do the rounds this term and I have really enjoyed reading the children’s creations to date.  Thank you for your support with this.  I am also in the process of arranging access to the Y4 Writing Wall section of the website for the children from home.  Hopefully this will provide another platform for the children to practise and improve their writing – more details to follow.
Home Learning will work in much the same way as last term.  I will make the grid available on this page later this week.  Dates for sharing will be 17th Jan, 31st Jan and and 14th Feb this term.  There will also be Maths and Spelling Home Learning for my groups this term.  I will send out hard copies of these and update the website with the details.
Our topic this term is called The Young Apprentice and will work in a similar fashion to the BBC TV series.  Children will work in small teams on set tasks which will enable us to cover lots of areas of the curriculum.  Whilst I don’t want to give too much away just now, there is likely to be a DT task, a Science task and an Art task.  The topic overview will outline the areas of curriculum we intend to cover and again I will make this available by the end of the week.
If any parents, carers or family members have any skills or expertise related to entrepeneurship or any of the individual tasks when they are set, we would love to hear from you.
Documents and Letters
The Young Apprentice – Home Learning – Thank you for letting me know that the links within the grid weren’t working.  Below are the documents you need!
Maths Home Learning
Week 3 – 24.7.14 – No ‘official’ Maths Home Learning this week as we have been working on symmetry which is difficult to send home.  We have been working on reflecting shapes in horizontal, vertical and diagonal mirror lines.  We have also looked at lines of symmetry within shapes and learnt that regular polygons have the same number of lines of symmetry as the number of sides.  Children should also be able to explain/demonstrate rotational symmetry.  Order will be retored next week with the home learning!
Dates for your diary
Monday 6th January – Term 3 starts
Friday 10th January – Science day at Rednock for Y4 and Y6
Wednesday 22nd January – Year 3/4 football at Rednock
Thursday 13th February – Year 3/4 PE enrichment event at Rednock
Monday 3rd March – Parents’ Evening
Wednesday 5th March – Parents’ Evening
Thursday 6th March – Dance festival at Rednock TBC
Wednesday 12th March – Year 3/4 Rugby at Dursley 1.15pm TBC
Thursday 13th March – Art gallery evening details TBC

Woodlands Junior School have some fantastic, free spelling games and activities that children can access at home.  Separated into clearly defined categories, children can select the particular area that they need to work on.

The Times Spelling Bee – a great site for spelling and learning the meaning of new words.  We often use this in class.

Spelling advice for parents and carers – this is an American website that is full of great tips, advice and game/acitivity ideas designed specifically for parents and carers who want to support their children in spelling but don’t feel confident to do so.

Ideas for spelling games and activities that can be done at home – does as it says on the tin!

Summer Term 2014

happy summerimagesCA4UKHH6

Welcome back to terms 5 and 6; I hope you all had a fantastic Easter break.


This term our topic learning is going to focus on History.

In term 5 (22nd April – 23 May) we are going to learn all about The Romans in a topic called Radical Romans.

Topic Overview

(NB as always the children will be driving the learning and so the overview is very likely to change slightly).

Home Learning Grid

(dates for sharing are 2nd May, 9th May, 16th May and 23rd May)

After half term, in term 6, we are going to have a whole school history week based on ‘The Fascinating History of Communication’. We will look at different ways humans have communicated throughout the ages: cave paintings; cuneiform and marking on stone;  inventing and using paper, use of pigeon; printing; invention of the telephone; semaphore and the use of flags; the invention of computing and the world-wide-web (and some bits in between!).  The focus here will be on chronology, encouraging the children to place the developments on a whole-school timeline and to begin to recognise how these developments have shaped the world.

Also in term 6, I would like to focus on an aspect of local history.  Not only is this an important part of the National Curriculum, but it is vitally important that the children understand that their local area has a rich historical background and I’m sure that this could pave the way for some exciting local historical enquiry.

House Keeping

PE Kits – Our indoor PE session will be on a Wednesday afternoon.  Please continue to ensure that kits are in school all week as I’d like to get outside as much as possible this term as we tackle athletics, cricket, rounder and swimming.  A seperate letter will be sent out regarding swimming.

Reading – Although the vast majority of the children in the class have a book which they are actively reading regularly, there are still a few who are backwards and forwards to the bookcase almost daily and never really seem to get ‘stuck in’ to a text!  Please encourage reading whenever and wherever possible!  For those children reading at Level 3 and above, they don’t necessarily have to read to you if they prefer not to.  They need to focus on proving their knowledge of the text, talking about characters, settings and events and reading between the lines to piece together to clues.  Perhaps they could listen to a story being read to them and then talk about it afterwards?  For those reluctant readers, think outside the box.  Is there a Kindle, Ipad or tablet at home that they might like to read on?  There are several good sources of e-texts which can be accessed from any computer.

Writing – Quite simply, the more opportunity to write, the better!  Get children practising their very best handwriting in occasion cards to friends and family.  Do they have a friend or relative they could pen a letter to?  How about keeping a diary?  Again, think outside the box – writing doesn’t have to involve a pen and paper.  Could they use a computer or laptop, Ipad or tablet to write a masterpiece?  Chalk could be used in the garden at home or even writing in the sand on that weekend visit to the seaside. 

WOW Day Friday 11th July 12:15-15:00

WOW! day letter

Here are some ideas for Roman recipes…  I would suggest the children still bring their lunchbox as normal just in case they don’t like the Roman delicacies on offer!

Roman Recipes Adapted for Modern Life

Carrots in sweet & sour sauce

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