Autumn Term 2 2023

Welcome back! I hope you had lovely half term break and you feel ready to dive into our brand new topic. We have lots of exciting things planned! A great way to be starting our new topic of Victorians will be a  Victorian themed day! On this day, we will turn into Victorian school children who experience a 19th century themed day. I can’t wait to see what creative costumes Y4 come in!

Collective Worship

Collective worship is a special time for us all. We all gather together and listen to a reading from the Bible. We listen and respond to God’s word and consider how this relates to our lives. We reflect on how we can learn from the Bible and what choices we should make going forth. Together we like to pray, listen to songs and sit quietly to remember how lucky we are to be part of God’s beautiful creation!

Our class worship table looks lovely after the children have dressed it themselves. They chose different artefacts for the table. Mary was especially important to the children as our topic in RE is trust in God and they wanted to remember Mary’s trust in God’s divine plan for her life.

Year 4 had a collective worship about Remembrance Day. We reflected on some Bible Scriptures about love and peace. This served as a small, simple reminder of those who have done so much for our country and those who continue to do so today.

During Advent, Year 4 enjoyed listening to the Mark 10 Missions and praying and singing along with the videos. We also kept opening the CAFOD Advent Calendar to learn more about how CAFOD helps various communities and the inspiring individuals who dedicate their time and effort to helping those who are in need.

RE – Trust in God

In RE the children will learn about Jesus’ teaching on how important it is that we trust Him. The children will explore the importance of trusting God as well as the difficulties it brings through the stories of Jonah, Zechariah, Mary and Joseph. We will be reflecting on the importance of having trust in each other and making promises.

We learnt about Jonah and his difficulty to trust God. The children applied their English skills and read about Jonah’s story. They then answered questions where they had to retrieve the information or interpret the people’s feelings. They also had to reflect on why it was hard for Jonah to trust and how God helped him. The children then had to make links to their own lives and think of what might they do if they were asked to do something that the did not want to in the first place.

Trust-building is an important component of teamwork at any age. Developing trust within Year 4 can help build bonds, teach children to work together to meet a shared goal, and improve communication and cooperation skills. We tried various activities that helped us understand what it means to trust each other and to be trusted. We tried the buddy walk, trust fall, human knot and the zipper.

English

In the centre of our Victorian topic is our class text, Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. We will be exploring the classic novel and use Oliver’s story to learn more about the history of Victorian England. We will look at the vocabulary used in the book and work out the meaning of words and phrases from the context. The children are beginning their learning journey by becoming reporters and interviewing various characters from the story of Oliver Twist.

Before diving into the new class text, we made predictions as we got familiar with the front cover and the blurb of the book. The children had great ideas and quite a few already knew a lot about the story of Oliver Twist which was a great bonus for their writing task!

During our Victorian Day, we were busy with our reading and writing! We used our ink pens to write in our neatest handwriting ‘Children should be seen an not heard’. Our reading comprehension of the day consisted of fables. We read about the lion and the mouse and the ant and the grasshopper. We then answered questions about the fables and discussed the moral of the stories.

We have been reading about Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens and using the book to explore vocabulary choices. We had to find adverbs in the text and we practised using adverbs in our own writing to apply what we have learnt and practice adding description to our writing. We have also worked on identifying and using various sentence types: statements, questions, commands and exclamations. The children worked through an active Burn2Learn activity and had to find example sentences which they then had to sort into the correct categories. They worked well as a team and then discussed their findings as a class.

This half term Year 4 have written both an informal and formal letter linking to out class text Oliver Twist. Year 4 will also focus on writing a narrative linked to Oliver Twist.

Maths

At the start of this half term, children will further develop their understanding of addition and subtraction using the column method. Later on in the half term, we will be learning more about making accurate estimations and using various checking strategies to check our answers are correct. As we explore length and perimeter calculations, the children will be converting between different metric units of measurements. We will learn and practise all our times tables up to 12×12 by the end of half term.

We have been busy working on our addition! We have been using the column method to clearly show our working out and when we are exchanging. The children have really developed their confidence using the method efficiently.

During our Victorian Day, Year 4 worked very well on their arithmetic skills! We chanted times tables, used Victorian money to work out prices of toys. We also had to write on slates with our slate pencils which seemed quite an incredible feat!

We practise our fluency in the back of our books to build our maths skills. The children had to work on their addition fluency with the column method using multiple exchanges.

We keep working on addition calculations using various representations. The children have to interpret the different representations and work out the answers using the column method as well to build their skills with the formal written method. We have also been working on our independence and we use calculators to self-assess our work. If the answers are incorrect, the children have to go back and show their working out to show the totals.

We practise our Key Instant Recall Facts (KIRFs) daily in Year 4. A fun way that we keep our skills of mental maths bubbling is by working on our fact families. The children worked on addition, subtraction, multiplication and division facts which they need to recall quickly. We had an active way of assembling these number sentences using a Burn2Learn activity. The children also learnt what inverse operations meant. We are always trying to build our speed of recalling number bonds and quick number facts.

We have also been working on reasoning and problem-solving questions with addition. The children really enjoyed asking their own questions and then working out the answers as practise. They could then highlight key words and show their working out to answer questions.

We carried on working with the column method for subtraction. The children have become very confident and they try their best to keep their presentation smart and clear in maths. We have been working on our fluency with and without exchanges.

Science

This half term Year 4 will be focusing on the topic ‘Wonderful water’.

Firstly, we explored the three states of water linking to our prior learning on the states of matter.

We then focused on learning the individual processes within the water cycle. We have explored the processes of evaporation, condensation and precipitation through diagrams, videos, experiments and discussions.

Year 4 recreated the water cycle as a burn2learn activity.

To complete our ‘Wonderful Water’ science topic Year 4 wrote a non-chronological report on the water cycle.

 

Art and Design

In Art and Design, we will begin to develop our printing skills. We will learn about the work of the Victorian artist William Morris and use his art to create designs in a similar fashion. Taking inspiration from our natural and built environments, we will make our printing blocks out of cardboard. After creating our printing blocks, we will be experimenting with repeating and rotating patters, various layers of print and different effects.

We began our art learning by having a look at the artwork of William Morris. The children commented really well on colours, shapes, lines and patterns to express their likes and dislikes. We then had a go at sketching natural objects and using hatching and cross hatching to create shadows. We used different pencils from 4H to 6B. We did this as part of our Victorian Day.

We have been evaluating the work of William Morris and the children had to choose some of his prints and express their opinions using their English skills. The children had to reflect on the colour use, patterns and they also applied their maths learning when they were exploring how some artwork was symmetrical.

To get ready for creating our printing artwork, the children planned their printing block designs and created their printing blocks. We kept the theme of natural things to get the same inspiration as William Morris. We had to apply our maths skills to measure and cut out 10cm by 10cm printing blocks. The children then had to cut out their shapes and use their pencils to create patterns that would show on their prints.

When it came to printing, we had different materials to explore. The children used their cardboard printing blocks, explored using foam and plastic to create their prints with. They used colour mixing and evaluated if they wanted any symmetrical patterns when they practised on their drafts and then created their final pieces of artwork. 

We then evaluated our own final prints and also gave each other feedback on what went well and what could have been improved.

Computing

 

Internet safety plays an important part in our Computing curriculum. This term, Year 4 discussed how keeping personal information secure is truly important and how we can tackle cyberbullying to keep ourselves safe online. We put great emphasis on Stop! Block! Tell!

 

History

Our topic is linked to History this half term. To kick-start our new topic, Year 4 will take part in a 19th century style themed day. We will experience what a Victorian school day was like as we dress up as Victorian school children. We will deepen our knowledge and understanding about the lives of children throughout the Victorian times.

To kick-start our new Victorian topic, Year 4 took part in a 19th century style themed day. To get into character, we dressed up as Victorian school children. We experienced what a Victorian school day would have been like as we had to obey strict rules, write on slates, chant our times tables and solve arithmetic problems related to Victorian money. We also had to use impeccable handwriting in our copy books, read old fashioned fables and find the moral of the stories.

 

The children have been learning more about the lives of rich and the poor in Victorian times. We explored various aspects from the past, including people’s work, housing, clothes and schooling as well. We also learnt about local history when we read about Victorian Leeds. The children had to do their research and recorded their findings relevant to the Victorian lifestyles.

We have worked on placing historical events and artefacts on a timeline. We worked with many inventions from the Industrial Revolution and the children also had to place on the timeline the many laws that were made to protect the poor and working children throughout the Victorian era. 

We applied our English skills and found out more about children’s jobs in the Victorian times. The children had to read and retrieve information and reflect on what the difficulties of the jobs were.

We did more research about our local history of the Armley Mills and what jobs children had to do there. The Year 4 pupils then had the opportunity to deepen their understanding and apply their English writing skills to write a diary entry as one of the worker children from the mill. They had to also make links to other Victorian jobs and their prior learning from previous year groups too. 

MFL

This half term in French we have worked on the topic ‘schools‘. Firstly, we explored what school in France is like and compared it to our own experiences of school in the UK.

We then focused on learning how to say different school subjects in French.

Finally, we learnt how to say which school subjects we like and don’t like and which is our favourite subject.

Music

Year 4 has been practising singing Christmas songs alongside the other KS2 classes. Everyone gave it their all and the Liturgy Service in Church was a great success where the parents were blown away by the amazing singing performance.

PE

In PE, the children will be developing their skills in playing ball games. They will be exploring the different rules in sports like hockey, football, tennis or basketball. They will also learn about the importance of timing and being able to read game situations correctly.

During our outdoor PE lessons, we have been working in teams to work on our passing, dribbling and shooting skills. We had to complete various tasks and work on our power and accuracy as we moved around.

The children have been great at working on their throwing skills and their spatial awareness. The had to work through various relay races and pay attention to each other in many different ways to be able to efficiently, quickly and accurately carry out the activities. They had to jump, hop, throw and receive balls as well as quickly pass each other.

It was time to work on our skills where we had to pay close attention to our partners. The children had to come up with different moves to warm up and get ready to work with their equipment as well as their partners. They then used tennis rackets and balls to improve their accuracy and precision.

PSHE

In PSHE, we will explore the topic of identity, society and equality with links to our British Value of individual liberty. At the beginning of the half term, we will discuss what is important to us to maintain our physical health and wellbeing. We will also learn about how a growth mindset can help us embrace further learning challenges and how we can build our resilience further.

We have learnt about various scenarios where we had to make good choices. Whether this was about being kind and generous with our friends, or knowing what good and bad touch are, the children could explain their reactions and had to consider the feeling of others. They all had to explore different points of view to help them with their reasoning.

We are responsible members of the class in Year 4. We all aspire to become valuable members of our community and we like to start early! The children already had jobs around the classroom, so now we decided to shuffle things around and add some new, well-needed positions to our existing ones. We proudly display our jobs in our classroom!

We reminded ourselves of the anti-bullying rules we have in school. The children know if something unkind is being done several times on purpose, then they need to start telling other people. We celebrated Odd Socks Day to show that we are all the same but we are all different and how important it is to live in peace with each other and appreciate each other for who we are!