Your class teacher is Miss Parks and your TA is Mrs Denton.
Our topic this term is: Local History: Hauxton.
We are very excited about a topic that has the children putting together what they know about the history of England with such a small area that's on their doorstep.
If anybody has any historical artifacts they are happy to share with the class, please do let us know!
Useful things to know
We are encouraging children to take responsibility for their own organisation and learning behaviour through metacognition.
The children are learning to use these prompts to help them work more independently and to consider what it is that they need in order to complete a task, what helps them to complete a task and what is hindering them when they are attempting a task.
Sometimes it is as simple as, "I don't have a pencil" or "I left my P.E kit at home", other times it's, "I'm not sure what the steps are to complete this." It is also about helping children to think how they are going to overcome the barrier to their learning - "I will find a pencil" or "I will get a spare kit from the lost property box."
We start with Me: How I feel about the task given
Then we Plan: Do I know what to do? What do I need?
Then we Self Regulate: How do I know I'm on task? What do I need to do now to finish?
Then we Evaluate: How did it go? What did I find tricky? What can I do better next time?
Help your children by reminding them to think out loud and to model this behaviour when supporting them with their homework.
Reading for pleasure!
We are encouraging Kestrels to read a range of genres and authors this year. The book shelf has been organised by reading band, selected authors and by genre.
We have also set aside a basket for children to add books that they recommend the rest of the class try to read.
Some children are still working on the skill of finishing a book before reviewing it!
To encourage your child, when reading with them, talk about the book they are reading.
What do they like about it? How could it be better? What was the best bit? Did it make you laugh, cry or excited? Would you recommend it to a friend? Why - what would your friend get out of it?
To help vary the reading diet of the class, each child has been given a Book Bingo sheet (another copy can be downloaded in the letters section of this page) to be stuck inside their reading records. The children are challenged to read new books from a variety of genres. I have asked that children try to read books they have NOT read before - with the exception of the "Re-read a book you have read before" challenge - as this will help them discover new authors and stories.
The children have to log the title and author of the book in the reading records and I am encouraging them to write a comment about whether they liked this book more or less than another by that author or in that genre.
The children must bring in their reading records every week.
Unfortunately the majority of the class did not get into the habit of bringing their reading record in this year and I'd like to rectify this. The children must bring their books in on the day of their guided reading session - their timetable is in the classroom and the children know which group they are in.
The children have been enjoying the adventures of the Finn Family Moomintroll and have already been using a wider range of vocabulary in their writing. We are going to be finishing this term writing our own adventure stories, with A Comet Comes to Moominland as the main source of inspiration.
The children are expected to plan and write stories with a Hook, Problem, Complication, Problem-being-solved and The Ending parts.
The children have been revisiting simple, compound and complex sentences and are practising using punctuation and carefully chosen language to build tension. They have just been learning about relative clauses.
Here is a reminder of the expectations, when learning multiplication tables:
By the end of year 2, they should know their 2x, 5x and 10x table.
By the end of year 3, they should know their 3x, 4x, 6x and 11x table
By the end of year 4, they should know their 7x, 8x, 9x, and 12x table.
Please, please help your child to learn their times tables. Knowing these by heart and being able to recall them quickly is invaluable to their learning. It helps them to progress more quickly with problem solving and multiplying and dividing larger numbers.
In 2019, a national times tables test will be introduced to year 4, to ensure that these expectations are being met.
Knowing their times tables means being able to answer an out-of-order multiplication question without thinking very long, such as: 5 x 5 = 25. 9 x 10 = 90. If your child is only able to count up in jumps of 2 or 10, make sure that they begin to apply each jump to a finger, and that they are aware that they are counting multiples.
It also means that they are able to solve the inverse, such as: 90 divided by 10 is 9. There are five 5s in twenty-five.
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For the entirety of this term, the children will be focusing on Multiplication and Division, and Fractions and Decimals.
They will be mastering the written methods as well as mental strategies, and using time on Friday mornings to learn a multiplication table each week.
Although strategies for learning these are being taught in class and the children are taking ownership of their own progress, please do keep practising these at home. The more securely the children know their times tables, the easier and more quickly they will be able to solve more complex problems.
As we discuss and introduce new methods, I shall upload photos of them so that you can see what we are doing.
The children are looking at States of Matter.
They have sorted household products into Solids, Liquid or Gas and have explored the properties of gases using balloons, bubbles, smell and pouring liquids into containers filled with bark, marbles and compost.
Art and Design Technology
Already the children have created wonderful images of the planets, based on what they heard of Holst's The Planets.
They will be looking at artwork by various artists and mimicking their techniques to create their own astronomical artwork.
On Thursdays the children will be working with Premier Sport. They will be doing dance with me, with the weekly day to be confirmed.
Please ensure your child's PE kits are in school every day. Sometimes time tables change or need to be moved around and your children need to be prepared for any eventuality!
What have we got up to?
In Autumn term we had a very successful residential trip to Grafham Water! This year the children had the opportunity to climb great heights, kayak, paddle board, go mountain biking and try their hands at map-reading. Everybody had a fantastic time and many were sad to leave. I believe the food was also a great highlight!