Welcome to Gwithian Class!

A huge welcome to the first of our Year 4 blog of 2017-18 where we will endeavour to explain what we’ve been up to and show off the achievements that have been made. First of all, I’d like to say that it was great to meet some of you at the general parent meeting this week and that I hope the information came across well and not patronisingly! For those of you who were not able to attend, I hope the information sent home made for interesting reading. We hope to work with you all throughout the year!

For the last couple of weeks, the children have been learning all about fantasy stories in English. They started off by watching a short film called ‘The Dream Giver’ which enabled them to see how this type of genre can inspire us to write. It also gave them an opportunity to develop their retelling of stories as well as inference of characters feelings through noting down how they feel at certain points of the film. The children will be reading lots of different extract from well-known fantasy stories to help them write their own over the coming weeks.

In Maths, we have been focussing on rounding numbers to the nearest 10 and 100. They have learnt the rounding rule and have also developed their reasoning skills in order to solve problems. TTRockstars has been introduced and have spurred them on to enjoy learning their times tables off by heart. This online platform will be used a lot this year in order to improve their speed and recall of multiplication with related division facts; please encourage them to login for a short while to keep them motivated!

Mr Davy has been teaching the children all about the digestive system in Science which has seen them label different parts and find out about what the function and purpose of each part is. Through research and presenting their findings, the children have begun to understand the importance of our bodies!

P.E has seen the children learn basic skills in basketball including chest and bounce passes as well as some dribbling and shooting techniques. Harry Parton has been helping us develop these skills. On a Monday the children got put through their paces during our first circuit training session. This will improve their overall fitness, stamina, agility and co-ordination! We get the music pumping and work in pairs to complete different activities. We select at least one star player from each P.E session to recognise effort during the lesson. In week 1, Ethan became our first winner and Isaac became this weeks as they both tried exceptionally hard! Well done boys!

We’ve started to think about our overall topic of ‘mining and smuggling’ and brainstormed all the things we already knew. We shall be learning about the locations of mine in the next couple of weeks before our trip to the mighty Geevor Tin Mine on October 9th!

Mrs Eddy has started teaching children Cornish Tin Mining songs to fit beautifully with our topic and we’re hoping to sing these to you during our end outcome at the traditional Cornish gathering!

Over the past 9 days, the children have also learnt some R.E with Miss Brant, created some geometry art faces (displayed in the classroom), had a PSHE/Jigsaw session based on what it feels like to be included in something, done a Big Write, completed a 10 minute writing challenge, completed AR reading quizzes, finished a mental maths, spelling, times table, reading comprehension test as well as participate in a handwriting session. It’s no wonder we’re all tired!

Next week brings much more fun and I truly hope your child has settled in well and are enjoying their time so far in Year 4!

A massive well done to Mia, Alfie, Sonny, Matt and Emma who all have writing displayed on our wow wall and also a huge congratulations to Alfie who became our overall star pupil last week and Mille who became this week’s star pupil – awesome job guys!

Please note that the times table for each week during this half term is on our class webpage and the Autumn Photos/videos page has been updated – go take a look.

A big thank you to Miss Rowe and Mrs Ballard on their hard work for the first two weeks and to you for your support.

Thank you for reading the blog – have a fab weekend all!

Mr Larter

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Erupting volcanoes!

The penultimate full week of the academic year has brought exciting times yet tired children (and teachers!) Three of our children participated in the Year 6 Kwik Cricket county finals…and won! They then went to the regional finals in Bristol and did brilliantly almost getting to the semi-finals. We’re very proud of James, Hayden and Lewis for their efforts and behaviour whilst on these trips.

In English this week, we’ve written our explanation texts using success criteria to ensure our final piece of writing of the year was successful. I’m so proud of their progress this year and I hope that when they bring their books home towards the end of next week, that you’ll visibly see it. Not just handwriting but content too!

We’ve had a boot camp maths session remembering the 4 main efficient methods for addition, subtraction, multiplication and division on Monday. We then moved onto converting lengths e.g. mm in to cm, cm in m and vice versa. It’s important we keep the structure of routines of the everyday life in class because some children just can’t cope without it, especially at this time of the year. Next week, we’ll be doing lots of team work problem solving murder mystery styled maths to see who can win some prizes!

We’ve erupted our volcanoes – wahoo! As you can imagine, the children LOVED this and it was great to see their reactions. I will post the videos on our class website this weekend so the children can watch them over the summer – enjoy!

The children have received certificates for completing the six week course of the WOW project with Jo Smith. It is a well-being initiative that ensures children are aware of how to communicate their thoughts and feelings and channel these in the correct way.

They have also been busy creating portraits of themselves as well as copying out a poem using their neatest handwriting so that these can be put into their portfolios. I always love seeing their progress from one year to the next and it’s staggering just how much children have made! The Year 6’s will receive their portfolios on Monday afternoon at the leaver’s assembly.

Science, D.T, R.E, music, computing, and Mathletics galore have also been taught this week so they have been fully engaged and kept busy – it’s no wonder we’re all shattered!

Although it was not announced (but will be on Monday), a massive well done to Demelza who becomes this week’s star pupil for an all-round excellent effort. Last week’s star pupil was Val because he had tried so hard in all aspects of school life.

Have a great weekend everyone – reports are out next week so I hope you enjoy reading them. Please, PLEASE use the reply slip to let us know any positive or negatives of the year as these are always so valued.

Mr Larter

 

Our book is now on sale!

 

What a fantastic Mazey Day turnout – such great support from parents – it really is appreciated.

Our book has now been published and is on sale. A MASSIVE thank you to those who have bought at least one copy. You can use the letter we sent home to order to pop in and see Dot as you’re able to buy as many copies as you like. We still have plenty left! The children have been excited about their poetry being showcased and would hate to see copies not being sold. We’re hoping that more parents or family members will purchase a copy as they make for a lovely keepsake especially at the end of year 4!

In Maths this week, the children have constructed bar charts in two different ways. They carried out investigations and then recorded the data. They produced scaled bar charts as well as graphs using excel spreadsheet; they were very excited printing them out! It was like Christmas has come early. Next week, they will learn to interpret continuous data and line graphs.

In English, the children have continued to learn about language features of an explanation text and have watched an awesome stimulus to produce their final piece of writing next week. Click onto the following link to have a look yourself. You get to type in your postcode and an action packed video is created showing a fire-tornado approaching your area: http://perfectstorms.history.ca/yourStorm/ the children loved it and their task was to create a fire-tornado survival machine labelling all its part so they can write how about it work in detail next week.

Those who were not at cricket on Monday, had the opportunity to create earthquake-proof structures in teams. They were given a newspaper, 3 paper plates, 3 plastic cups and a full roll of masking tape to make the sturdiest structure. We then rated them out of 10 by testing their strength by putting a full bottle of hand gel on top to see if it would fall off. They then learned all about how different countries prone to earthquakes design their buildings in different ways to enable them to be safe. The children had to design their own earthquake-proof buildings establishing reasons why they chose the parts/materials they did. This also will help them in their writing task next week. Pictures are, as usual, on the website.

Well done to Lewis who showed great sportsmanship, Harry for great manoeuvring around the court and Ben for great defence skills as they became this week’s star players in P.E. Mrs Randall taught the children a different kind of bench ball to get them thinking more strategically developing their tactical skills. We split the class in half so they had quality P.E whilst the others created bar charts using laptops with myself!

The children have also learnt science, music, computing and PHSE this week – only 3 weeks left to go…scary!

Well done to Jacob Mann and Harvey Rule who becomes our star pupils this week for an all-round excellent effort!

Have a great weekend everyone,

Mr Larter

Mazey day madness!

Did you all enjoy the weather? Wasn’t it glorious? During one lunch time, we had to come in early because the heat was so intense that children were suffering. We also did P.E in the hall because else we certainly would have had problems! We filled both water jugs up 6 times during the session as we needed it!

In maths this week, we’ve interpreted and created pictograms understanding why they’re used relating this to real life contexts. They’ve also collected data through measuring long jumps and line jumps and inputted the result into frequency tables. We’ve started to learn how to draw bar charts and will continue this next week.

English has seen us continue to explore explanation texts, identifying their language and structural features so that it will be easier to create our own from next week. They’ve learnt how to use subordinating conjunctions, time adverbials and technical vocabulary. We will learn how to plan and begin to write about how to survive a natural disaster. A massive well done to Logan who becomes our star writer for his excellent, emotional diary entry of the earthquake scenario last week.

Our Big Write was based on a tornado (a weather related natural disaster) so I’m hoping they’ve aced it using effective description and accurate use of speech punctuation. These will be used to help assess the children’s writing ready to input into reports.

We played bench ball on Tuesday whilst there were 12 children out at a cricket tournament. It was great fun and I joined one team to help them out – it was a very hot day so we had to have ‘drink’ breaks to cool down. We changed the rules after every game to increase the challenge which worked well, developing their tactics all the while. Our star players were Harvey, Alfie and Molly who all worked the court extremely well, intercepting the ball and tried their very best!

The children learnt about how to measure earthquakes this week using the Richter scale and had to order the levels of devastation. They also got to paint their volcanoes so they can be covered in PVA before being able to be erupted in a couple of weeks’ time – something to look forward to!

Our class poetry book has been sent off to the publishers and we’re really excited to see the outcome! They will be on sale soon but we shall send a letter home to ask how many copies you’d like to buy before we sell the rest at the summer fayre. We hope you’ll buy at least one to give the children a memento of their year with us; a truly lovely keepsake with photos galore!

We’re incredibly proud of all of our cricketers this week. 3 children (James, Lewis & Hayden) were involved in a trip to Taunton where they were up against private schools…they did extremely well in the heat and should be very proud of themselves. These 3 children as well as Cody, Alex, Val, Ollie B, Ben, Logan, Ollie H, Noah & Harry also took part in a tournament on Tuesday against other teams in the local area. Two teams have qualified for the Cornwall Cricket at some point in July – no-one can say we don’t give them opportunities! Well done boys!

Jo Smith came in and did her third session with the children which was based around knowing how our minds work when we feel different emotions. She used icing and food colouring to show that when a feeling intensifies whenever things get better/worse and gave children strategies for how to relax and break a negative cycle. (Apologies to Ruby who had smurf hands for the next few days!) Jo gave them words to put into categories to recognise where different emotions may fit into including happy, angry and frustrated. They also had to write and colour in figures of a boy or a girl displaying their current feelings and when they are happiest.

Miss Brant taught the children how to investigate the speed of ice melting and what happens during the process. There are pots and towels (scrunched and un-scrunched) around the room and will be left until next week where they will interpret the results, displaying them appropriately.

A big well done Cody who becomes our star pupil for an excellent all-round effort!

Have a great weekend and see some of you at Mazey!

Mr Larter

Pictures on the website!

It’s been a massively busy, action-packed week what with sports day, smoothie making, earthquake scenarios, Mazey day making, sport left, right and centre as well as the usual day to day learning that school life brings.

In Maths, the children have been learning about perimeter. It’s always controversial learning about area and perimeter so close together because the danger is that they’ll mix the contexts up! However, with time running out this year, it’s impossible to fit everything in. The children have been gangster rapping (ask them to show you!) as well as using cubes to investigate the perimeter of shapes. Pictures are on the website.

We haven’t covered much in English due to so much going on this week. However, the children have started to learn about explanation texts. First they’ve written a ‘cold task’ to see what they already know about the structure and language. Then we’ve started to learn a funny text about cats being dishwashers to learn off by heart much similar to that when we learned the historical story. They’ve answered and designed their own questions based on the text to further interrogate its features. Next week, we shall pull the text apart learning about conjunctions, adverbials of time and the use of paragraphs.

We devised an earthquake scenario without the children knowing during lunch time on Thursday. Some helpful Year 6’s helped us turn the classroom into utter devastation and also lay injured or dead. Tables, chairs and furniture were thrown around and other bits of paper were strewn all over the ‘rubble’. The children didn’t have a clue what was going on but the sound effects in the background helped to set the scene! The children then had to imagine they were part of the community to clean up the classroom back to its original state. Some super writing was the outcome that have been added to their project files. Photos of the wreckage and the community clear up are on the website.

Gwithian class were so lucky in having the opportunities to learn all about healthy smoothies as Chartwells (the company who create our beautiful lunches) came in and did some interactive demonstrations. The children chose different fruits and used hand held blenders to create delicious smoothies. They LOVED it and even wrote down the recipes to try at home – more photos are on the website.

Jo Smith (Mentor of the Web of Well-being project) came in and did her 2nd session with the class based on thoughts, feelings and actions. The children explored this and played with play-dough to show that anything can pop into our heads meaning that we have free space to think about important issues. They learnt that thoughts lead to feelings and these lead to behaviour. As a consequence of our behaviour, actions happen and sometimes these are not for the good. Therefore, it’s about making the right choices with a little bit of foresight!

The class have also been taught computing with Mr Davy, music with Mrs Eddy and Science with Miss Brant – sheesh! Our children are given so many opportunities – it’s fantastic. We’ve brand new displays up in the class and we’re in the middle of compiling our end of term project book.

We’ve finished our class read ‘I Survived the Tsunami’ and have now moved on to Michael Morpurgo’s Kensuke’s Kingdom. Every class has the same book and listen to an audio tape so as to hear varying voices apart from my own! This really helps to see how punctuation is read properly and tones/expression change.

A massive well done to Theo who becomes our star pupil this week for an excellent effort with learning and behaviour – well done!

Have a great weekend everyone

Mr Larter

4 days

A short but busy week for some. I hope you all had a truly great break.

Our English this week has been fantastic. Children have learnt all about Tanka poetry which is a 2 line extension of a Haiku poem which has 3 lines. The pattern of syllables is much similar too. The outcome of this whole entire natural disasters topic is a poetry book that will be sold in a few weeks time. We’re really excited about publishing it so will get in touch with you in due course! It’ll take me a little while to compile it. Plus, as some children have been away for the whole poetry unit, they haven’t written any at all.

In Maths, children have learned all about how to calculate the area of rectangles. Knowing that it can be done in two ways has helped: either add up the squares or multiply the length by the width. With their new found knowledge, they were tasked with designing a luxury house floor plan for victims of a volcano. They had great fun whilst doing this and helped to engage them in the topic.

We had 7 children participate in the Penwith Athletics Championships at Carn Brea on Thursday. We had some awesome results alongside a 29 squad of KS2 athletes including GOLD in the relay (Alaina, Ava, Gabe & Rory), a SILVER by Alaina & Gabe in their sprint finals and a BRONZE by Lola who ran incredibly in the 600m run. Other amazing athletes from our class were Oliver B and Logan. A massive well done to them all. Some will go on to represent the whole of Penwith at the Cornwall championships on the 5th July at Par running track.

The children has an awfully messy but fun time when applying Modroc to their group volcanoes. It was a great session and the photos are currently on our class webpage under ‘Summer Photos’. Soon we will paint and glue/varnish these structures before exploding them later in the term.

In Science, the children learned about melting and did an investigation based on temperature by using thermometers. They had to measure in various locations before recording the results in a table and line graph – a great cross curricular link to maths.

A short blog due to a short week. A massive well done to Molly who has become our star pupils for an all-round effort – well done!

It’s sports day on Monday so we hope to see lots of you there.

Have a fab weekend,

Mr Larter

 

Despite lots of illness, happy half term!

 We’ve had lots of children absent this week due to horrible bugs going around; I hope you all manage to have a healthy half term break! Because of the sunshine, this will be a short blog.

This week, the children have learned all about Haiku poetry. This is Japanese influenced and is very short. They are only 3 lines long following a pattern of 5, 7, 5 syllables. The children have been playing around with language to create powerful, impactful poems based on natural disasters. They’ve then edited these using dictionaries and thesaurus’s to ensure they give the reader a clear, vivid picture. I’m hoping to compile these poems into a book for our end product. Most will go on display in the classroom or just outside our front door on our new display board. We’ll next focus on Tanka poetry, a similar style of poetry with 2 extra lines – sheesh, will they cope?

In Maths, the children have continued their knowledge of shape learning how to identify lines of symmetry in polygons in different orientations. It’s clear that some children just ‘see’ it and others need time to develop strategies to recognise them! We’ve used folding techniques and mirrors to develop their knowledge. They loved reflective symmetry where they were tasked with identifying patterns on mirror lines. Their mini assessments showed off what they had learned but many had forgotten basics of differing between pentagons and other shapes. We shall move on to finding the area of shapes after half term.

P.E saw the children practise for sports day – it’s only a 4 school days after we get back until they have to show off in front of the parents so it was much needed. Our star player was Ava for her focus and beautiful running style.

Miss Brant taught the children Science, developing their understanding of solids, liquids and gases whilst Mrs Eddy taught the children music.

Mr Davy took the children out on the field to compose their garage band music – a much needed relief at what feels like a very long half term!

With Mrs Randall suffering from illness all week, Miss Rowe has been an absolute godsend so I wish to thank her for the hard work and effort she has put in throughout this week. I also hope that everyone who was ill, manages to get some fresh air and returns back to school healthy.

Our star pupil is Phoebe because she has worked incredibly hard all week, remaining focused and producing some excellent work.

Many thanks for your continued support, I can’t believe it’s only one half term left of Year 4!

I wish you a sunny half term!

Mr Larter