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Hauxton Primary School

Being The Best We Can Be

Kestrels Yrs 3 & 4

Welcome to Kestrel Class!


Your class teacher is Mrs Parks-Connolly* and your TAs are Mrs Denton, Mrs Wilkinson and Mrs Cox.


*The children call me Mrs Parks still smiley


Our topic this term is Roman Britain.  Naturally, our question is.... "What did the Romans do for us?"   


We are starting with looking at the foundation of Rome, what life was like for Romans and how they built their massive empire before exploring life in Britain before and during Roman rule.


no Useful things to know mail


  • Each child needs both an indoor and outdoor PE kit, to be kept in school all week, as PE days are subject to change:
    • Indoor: Plain white t-shirt, plain black shorts or bottoms.  
    • Outdoor: Plain white t-shirt, a long sleeved jumper, plain black long bottoms, trainers and spare socks for children in tights.
  • A water bottle is required every day. The children are welcome to leave their bottles in school during the week, to refill at the fountain.  The children are not permitted to drink squash or juice from these bottles.
  • Spelling tests will be on Mondays. It is vital that your child practices a little bit every day. They are expected to evidence this practice 3x a week in their spelling journals. For those who find Look Cover Write Check tricky, there are more kinesthetic learning ideas in their journal.
  • Times Tables tests will be on Fridays. Year 3 will start with the 2x table, year 4 with the 3x table. The year 3s will be required to pass the test two weeks running in order to move on to their 5s, 10s and 11s, before starting on the 3s, 4s, 6s, 7s, 8s, 9s and 12s.  I am providing year 4 with revision weeks before moving them on to the tables they were working on last, last year.
  • Reading records must be handed in weekly - the children have been told to bring them on their Guided Reading day so that I can check them. 
  • Please ensure homework is handed in on time.
    - The deadline for MyMaths homework is Mondays
    - Once a fortnight your child will have a comprehension activity to do. This must be brought in, to be marked as a class, on Friday.  When there is no comprehension activity, there will be a activity to do.
    - Activities from the Homework Menu may be presented to the class on a Monday of your choice, which is when there is a timetabled slot.



We are encouraging children to take responsibility for their own organisation and learning behaviour through metacognition.  The children are being encouraged to practice their spellings and times tables independently at various times in the week as well as at home.



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 2020 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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We are starting the year with work on place value and mental strategies.  Ask your child to round numbers to the nearest 10, 100 and 1000.  Ask them how they know whether to round up or down.  Practice number bonds to 10 and 100. Discuss the patterns.  Discuss the value of digits within 4 and 5 digit numbers. Ask them to add/subtract multiples of 10, 100 and 1000.  A little bit every day will help to consolidate their learning.

Calculation methods in Kestrel Class

English: Our class book is: The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo


The children have adored studying this book, so far.  We have been reading one to three chapters at a time and responding to the story through discussion, writing in-role, poetry and lyric writing.  I highly recommend buying this book for children to revisit (and you parents to enjoy!) at home - but please wait until we have finished the unit, so that the story is not spoiled for them! 


I strongly suspect that this book will be heavily featured in our class assembly.




Edward - and the children - has now experienced love and loss! He is a changed rabbit. As the story reaches its conclusion, the children have written 1st Person Narratives from the perspective of one of those that loved Edward and they have explored the concept of imagery and symbolism in Edward's first-ever dream. They have produced their own impression of the dream, using colour to convey mixed feelings of freedom, despair and heartbreak in the dream. 



I have been very impressed by how well the children have not only engaged with this complex book but also the way they have managed to keep track of everything that has happened including small details that are tricky to recall without pictures. 


Kestrels and I will feel quite bereft when we finish this book!

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane


The children are focusing on "Cycles" in nature;  weather cycles, seasonal cycles, life cycles and the water cycle.  So far we have discussed how nature is affected by the seasons, how seasons are caused and why the equator does not have seasons in the same way we do; the life cycle of a plant from seed to seed and the life cycle of a chicken with a focus on the development of the chick inside of an egg.  


Don't worry, parents, we have established that the eggs bought in shops are unfertilized

History and Geography


The children were extremely lucky to be visited by a time-travelling Roman soldier on the second day back!  They had a fantastic morning creating Roman perfumes, wax tablets, ink, bronze brooches, mosaics, clay pots and clay charm animals, all the while being recruited into the legion and spreading rumours and gossip! In the afternoon they were archeologists, descovering artifacts and identifying which part of the fort they were digging in.


We have since learned the legend of Romulus and Remus, about Roman social hierarchy and what life was like for ordinary Romans. The children have been asking many interesting questions including, "What were marriage ceremonies like?"



On Thursdays the children will be working with Premier Sport.  On Wednesday, they will be doing PE with me.


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!