Avocets - Mr Danes
Welcome to our Avocets Class!
Our class are a mixture of Year 3 and 4 pupils taught by Mr Prior. Mrs Duncan is always close at hand to provide extra support! Mrs Seaton teaches us PE on Tuesday afternoons, while Miss Roberts leads our weekly drama sessions (also on Tuesdays). Mrs Baker and Miss Paul will be spending time with small groups and Mrs Lomas is a familiar face who listens to us read regularly.
The overriding theme for the spring term will be The Ancient Egyptians. In this unit we shall find out about the way of life of the Ancient Egyptians. We will develop our understanding of how they lived, what was important to them and the legacy left by this hugely influential group of people. The unit will link with Geographical skills and be supported through the use of ICT, Art and D&T. In addition, our KS2 theatrical production (due to take place at Easter) will be a terrific opportunity to draw together a multitude of skills learnt – including singing!
As ever, we shall be looking to enhance learning through a local educational visit ... watch out for the newsletter (and Class Dojo) for more details!
We should have our reading books and book records in school every day and endeavour to read at home as often as we can; the Barbosa Reading Record Booklets allow us to chart every time we read during the week for 20 minutes or more. This can be either alone in a quiet place, or to an adult – either way we must make sure we have written down the number of pages read and the date in our booklets. The school library is accessible every day but our class has a special time booked on Mondays and Fridays to change reading books. This half term, our main class texts will be ‘The Gold in the Grave (Egyptian Tales)’ by Terry Deary and ‘Flat Stanley: The Great Egyptian Train Robbery’ by Jeff Brown, to link with our topic. We will look at a variety of other fiction and non-fiction texts during Shared and Guided Reading sessions.
We should have our kit in school every day. We need shorts and our House Team coloured T-shirt for indoor PE; we use our field all year for PE, so tracksuits are useful (even essential) on cold days! We need plimsolls for indoor games and some dance activities, however bare feet is best for gymnastics. Trainers are essential for outdoor games as well as lunchtime activities. We MUST make sure we have our full PE equipment!
Maths and English homework will be set each Friday and should be handed in the following Friday. This allows a weekend and several evenings to be able to complete the tasks. A homework club will take place during Wednesday lunchtimes if we need extra time or help. In addition to English and Maths, we will receive a set of spellings/ rules to learn (again, given out on Fridays for a test the following Friday). Other pieces of work may be set for us to carry out at home, relating to on-going learning in class for us to earn ‘bonus points’!
We are given opportunities every day to develop our reading, writing and communication skills. ‘persuasive texts’ will be the main focus for our first piece of assessed writing in the run up to half term – this will allow us to really use our sentence skills and put our writing to the test, once we have learned about different characteristics and techniques.
The essential objectives are:
Reading: Read words accurately and understand a variety of different texts.
Writing: Draft, edit and present pieces of writing; set work out neatly, spell and punctuate correctly; construct sentences and paragraphs carefully; write with a purpose, use imagination and organise ideas appropriately; adapt style and presentation to suit the purpose and appeal to the audience for which it is intended.
Communicating: Listen carefully and understand what is being said; Develop a wide and interesting vocabulary; Speak with clarity, developing expression to sustain interest; Tell/ re-tell stories with structure; Hold conversations and contribute ideas. Our new PATHS Curriculum (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) will also serve to improve communication skills, as well as boosting our self-esteem!
During Maths this half term we will be consolidating and revising methods covered so far, focussing on the four operations (adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing). In line with the new curriculum, Maths is organised into units of work. Sections are revisited each term so we can practise, consolidate and develop our skills throughout the year. We have access to lots of different equipment to help us with:
- Number and Place Value
- Addition and Subtraction
- Multiplication and Division
- Geometry – position and shape
Regular mental maths and ‘Times Tables Rock Stars’ makes sure our mathematical skills are kept sharp. Our teachers assess the extent to which areas are understood, as well as concepts needing further learning or practice.
Inventors and inventions
During the first half of the term, we shall learn about how scientists study the world around us using the scientific method and how they perform experiments to find out how nature works. We will also find out what important contributions scientists have made to improve our lives and discuss possible inventions of the future! Who knows, we may have a ‘Dyson’ in the making right here at Holly Meadows!
After half term, we will look more closely at ‘sound’. This will lend itself more readily to lots of practical investigations!
We will work scientifically, asking and answering our own questions. When opportunities arise, we will conduct fair tests and investigations, making and recording detailed observations using labelled and annotated diagrams.
Over the course of the year, we will be given opportunities to:
- Use a computer to sequence short pieces of music using a small selection of pre-record sounds.
- Independently record video for a range of purpose, paying attention to the quality of the video capture.
- Take photographs for a specific reason or project and/or find appropriate images online.
- Create a video out of still images.
- Use the computer to preform photo edits and create a range of digital creations using photos.
In addition, we will be able to use ICT to research information and create our own PowerPoint presentations!
Remember to check our Class Dojo for weekly updates and photographs!