Autumn Term 2

Welcome back! I hope you all had a restful half term.Keep a look out on this page to see what we have been learning about. This half term Year 3 have a prehistoric theme following on from the Stone Age. We will travel back in time to learn more about the Bronze Age through to the Iron Age.

Collective Worship

In Year 3, we have collective worship monitors who help prepare the collective worship table in class. They dressed the table with the purple cloth to symbolise that it is the start of advent.

R.E. – Mary, Our Mother

We began our new learning journey by reading the story of the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38) and discussed how Mary must have felt when the Angel Gabriel told her she was going to have a special baby. In pairs we role-played this scene and gave reasons as to why we Mary agreed to have Baby Jesus. Take a look at Year 3 being Mary and the Angel Gabriel.

In pairs we role-played this scene and gave reasons as to why we Mary agreed to have Baby Jesus. We also discussed what we can learn as Christians from Mary’s actions.We used our working wall in R.E to support us with our learning. We discussed how hard it must have been for Mary,as a young girl, to make such a brave decision to follow God’s wishes, but she had faith and trust in God to ultimately guide her. Just as Mary put her faith and trust in God we discussed how we can put our faith and trust in God to guide us when we are faced with worries or problems.

‘ I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.’ Philippians 4:13.


Cafod Workshop- Understanding how to look after God’s world

Today we had a special visit from Bronagh from Cafod. She spoke to us as a class about net zero and how we can be a Zero Hero. We talked all about climate change and the devastating effects that it has on our world. We thought about how we can make simple changes to ensure that we keep the balance and achieve ‘net zero’.


We linked this to how we ‘Live Simply’. We considered how we could walk instead of getting the car for short journeys, reduce our plastic use, recycle and plant trees to look after God’s world. Our class planet protectors are ensuring that lights are switched off when we do not need them on and check that paper is being put in the recycling bin.


We learnt about Pope Francis calling on us to act now to make a change before it’s too late.

English – The Iron Man

In English we are using the narrative story The Iron Man by Ted Hughes, as inspiration to write.  We began by reading the story in guided reading and discussing what had happened as well as making predictions. The children are thoroughly engrossed in the story. We began by identifying expanded noun phrase and similes in the text and discussing how we knew this.

Year 3 then enjoyed going on a treasure hunt around school to locate and find a variety of expanded noun phrases and similes. They had to sort them with their talk partners and give reasons for their choices.


Following this Year 3 then listened to the description of the Iron Man again and had a go at drawing him. They then wrote their own similes and noun phrases around their pictures to describe him. Following this Year 3 wrote a full character description of the Iron Man using lots of expanded phrases and similes.

His great iron head, shaped like a dustbin but as big as a bedroom, slowly turned to the right, slowly turned to the left. His iron ears turned, this way, that way. He was hearing the sea. His eyes,like headlamps, glowed white, then red, then infrared, searching the sea.

Following this Year 3 then began to look at the features of newspapers. In our book area we have lots of First News newspapers so we began by looking at them and discussing what we could see. We then read a newspaper article in our whole class guided reading session and began to highlight the features of it.

Whilst reading the newspaper report Year 3 picked out some unfamiliar words that can often be used in them. They used the Ipads to what they meant and alternative words that could replace them. We added these words to our working wall. The children enjoyed working with a partner to do this.

We identified that newspaper reports contain direct and reported speech. We continued reading Iron Man and practiced adding in speech marks for dialogue between two characters.

Year 3 then began to plan and draft the beginning of their newspaper report. They had to decide which character from Iron Man they wanted the newspaper article to be about, what happened to them, when and where the events happened and finally why. ‘The 5 ws.’

Following this Year 3 then planned and draft the main body of their newspaper article. They considered which character they would interview and role played doing this. Year 3 absolutely loved doing this! They then wrote what the character said using speech marks, which they had previously practiced the week before.

Following this, Year 3 planned what the main character reported had happened to them. We added some modeled writing to our working wall. They really enjoyed doing this and are getting excited to write their final full newspaper!


Maths-Multiplication and Division

We’ve been learning about multiplication this week. We practised recalling 3x’s table facts and used these to recall the 6x’s table facts. Similarly, we practised recalling 4x’s table facts and used these to recall 8x’s table facts. The children have enjoyed lots of different Burn2Learn games, singing songs, dancing and tennis times tables to recall these facts confidently and fluently.


Year 3 have been discussing alternative words for multiplying  and recognising this as being repeated addition.


We have been solving times table problems. Year 3 have a times table key ring attached to their pencil cases which they use to be resourceful and independent learners.

Year 3 have recalling and using multiplication facts for the 3, 4 and 8 times tables. Following this we have be writing and calculating two digit numbers times one digit numbers, using mental methods and shortly will be progressing onto using the column method to multiply. Year 3 have also been dividing two digit numbers by a one digit number, practising and learning our timetables has really helped us solve these tricky calculations! We did this by grouping arrays to help us divide.

We’ve also been stretching our brains to solve some very tricky multiplication and division problems too. The children are fantastic at choosing their own resources like numicon, counters or hundred grid squares to help support them with their learning



Animals and Humans

This half term in Science we will began by thinking about questions we want to find the answers to. We added these questions to our Science working wall.

Some of these questions were:

What is the largest bone in the human body?

Where is the smallest bone in the human body?

Why do we need bones?

Does every living thing have bones?

How many bones we have?

What are bones made out of?


St. Joseph’s Science Week


The theme for science week this year is Our Diverse Planet. To launch this week we had a whole school class assembly about ‘biodiversity’ and what this means . We learnt that biodiversity comes from two words. Bio which is short for biology (living things) and diversity (variety). Biodiversity means the mixture of all life on earth.
It includes all the species, habitats and ecosystems (including humans) which exist on our planet. This theme encourages us to think the variety of life on our planet

This has linked brilliantly to kick start our learning journey this half term with learning about the diversity of humans and  animals we have on the planet. It links with learning new scientific vocabulary and knowledge about the human skeleton too.

Skeletons workshop

During our Science Week, Hands on Science visited and delivered  a fact packed  workshop for Year 3! The workshop linked in brilliantly to the questions the children had first thought about at the start of the topic. The children found out how many bones are in the human body, what the smallest and largest bones are in the human body and learnt about what bones are made from. Year 3 acted out what it would like if we didn’t have any bones in your body. One child said,

If we didn’t have any bones in our bodies we would just be like a big puddle of skin on the floor!

The children had to then create their moving skeleton and think about how the different bones in the human body fitted together. We discussed as a class who might  need to know the names of bones as part of their job and how they work. We also looked at different x-rays and discussed what they see.

St. Joseph’s Science Fair

Wow! What a fun packed week it has been in school. To finish the week Year 3 and 5 were set a home work challenge to design and make their own Science game or experiment  that other classes could play too. We had such a range of stalls in school for the Science Fair, including balloon cars, games to explore your sense of smell, touch and taste, quizzes and even a lemon clock! It was a very busy morning and all the children loved being able to wear their homemade lab coats too! Check the photos of us in action! A big thank you to Miss Waite and all the children who took part in Year 5 too for making it a great success. Also, a huge thank you to the children and parents of St.Josephs. They raised over £110 from the Science Fair to buy new science equipment for our school.

Working Scientifically

Year 3 had a brilliant time working scientifically to investigate;

How does the skull circumference of a girl compare with that of a boy?

They choose how to investigate this and selected their equipment to measure the circumference.

Art- Cave paintings

Linking to our History topic, in Art this half term year 3 will be creating their own cave painting. To begin with Year 3 used the computers to find images of cave paintings that they liked and would use as a source of inspiration. They used the snipping tool to cut, paste and then print their images. Following this Year 3 discussed why they had chosen their cave paintings and wrote about what they liked about them, how they replicate the image and the story they thought it told about life in prehistoric times.

Take a look at our learning journey so far.

Once the children decided on a final cave painting that they would use as a source of inspiration, they used water colours to create a wash for the background. They practised first making sure the wash was smooth and covered the whole piece of paper.

Once the backgrounds dried, the children added experimented with creating mood using paint. This added another layer to the backgrounds. The children again practised doing this technique first and used their chosen cave painting as sources of inspirations.

The next step on our learning journey was to add detail onto the background to create the cave painting. The children drew on their chosen pictures at the start of the learning journey to replicate. Year 3 used pastels to add a variety of prehistoric animals and people onto their pictures. The final step was to use black to outline the animals and add further detail. Take a look at our final cave paintings. We are very proud of the effort we put into producing these!



Computing- Coding

This half term in Computing, we have been developing our coding skills. We have been thinking about ‘computational thinking’ and why specific instructions are really important. We first started by giving instructions to each other to instruct our partner to move from one place to another place. In order to move from A to B, one partner had to give really explicit instructions such as how many steps to take, how large/small the steps were, how to turn etc. This is just like on a computer, iPad or phone – technology needs really clear and explicit instructions.

Following this,we continued to further develop our understanding of computational thinking through the use of the app ‘A.L.E.X’ using our iPads. Pupils had to work through a number of levels with increasing complexity. The levels required pupils to move the robot forward or to the left or the right. As the levels increased in complexity, portals were introduced and having to turn a multiple number of times to face the right direction. Pupils would have to input all of the instructions before they could ‘run their code’. This then allowed pupils to further explore the concept of ‘debugging’ – thinking about what didn’t quite work and going back and attempting to fix it before running the code again. This deepened the understanding of the need for clear step by step instructions.

Pictures to follow



This half term Year 3 have been practising counting forwards and backwards. We discussed patterns in French numbers especially the teen numbers. We worked with our talk partners to play ‘guess my number.’

They also enjoyed another game of the music dance mat where they had to match the word to the number. This is a fast, active and fun game where the children could see progress each time as the score improves round by round.

We also played a fun, active Burn 2 Learn game where we had translate the french number into English and then the English number into French. This certainly got our hearts pumping and our brains thinking!


Year 3 then practised playing shop and asking how much an item is to buy. One person role played being the customer and the other child role played being the shop keeping and saying how much the item is. We have been working really hard on improving our pronunciation of the words, phrases and even full sentences. Next, Year 3 learnt how to say the different names of foods and discussed whether they are good for our health or should be be eaten in moderation. We used google translate to support our learning and understanding of vocabulary we found tricky.


The children listened to ‘The Hall of the Mountain King’, this is an orchestral piece by Edvard Grieg composed in 1875.  Children did a music and movement exercise, moving in ways that they felt reflected the music.

They learnt about the instruments of the orchestra and watched a video of how they are played in the piece.  Following this, they  learnt the story and wrote the lyrics to a song that retells that story, working out an accompaniment of chime bars, xylophone and percussion.  This was great fun and a good way of helping children to access orchestral music.


Year 3 then listened to learnt the ‘new’ Scooby Doo them tune and enjoyed being active to compose and perform music in small groups, to accompany various scene ideas for the TV show.  The children recalled the skills they have learnt so far of playing together as an ensemble, using repeated melodic and rhythmic ideas and either leading an ensemble or following a conductor as part of an ensemble.  This was great fun and really got the children thinking creatively. They also had to think about playing their instrument skillfully and in tune too. This meant performing  with an awareness of others. The children absolutely loved playing their personalised, melodic tunes together.

” I enjoyed playing together as a band.” Cara

“I loved playing the drums.” Marius

“I am proud of how we worked together.” Shevaun

“This was so much fun.” Aran

Inspiring you Week- Music

Mr. Mercer spoke to Year 3 about his passion for playing and teaching music. He said he initially learnt to play the cello, at an early age, but soon realised he wanted to learn how to play the guitar. Mr. Mercer explained that his music teacher inspired him to practice, work hard, be resilient and continue with his love for learning this instrument. He said he studied it as school, college and went on to achieve a degree in music at Edinburgh University. Initially, he said his inspiration was the rock band ‘Oasis’ and he wanted to be rock star too but then he found he his real passion was to be able teach music. Following this, Mr Mercer then studied to become a music teacher. Year 3 were active listeners and asked lots of questions to the lifelong learner Mr Mercer.


P.E- Tennis skills

in PE with Mr Cooper, the children have been practising throwing the tennis ball to a partner and gently hitting it back to them. They thought about their aim, power and and the accuracy of the controlled volley. The children really enjoyed doing this. Afterwards, the lesson progressed onto using and applying these skills in a game. At the end of the lesson, the children reflected on the skills they had used and how they could improve them.




Aikido- Inspiring you week

Year 3 were really fortunate during our Inspiring You themed week to have an Aikido taster session with Mr Grundy who is an active and passionate Aikido instructor. The session started with some history about Aikido, a traditional Japanese martial art and what it is used for. Mr Grundy explained that it is a form a self defence.

The children then had the opportunity to have a go. This started with a tag game where the children took on a partner and had to intercept an object tucked behind them; they were not allowed to run around to dodge their partner, rather they had to make body contact and grab around their partner’s body.  This was great fun.  The next activity involved removing your opponents wrist band. They started in a sitting position back to back and were not allowed to rise to a standing position. There was lots of body contact and adrenaline running as it was extremely exciting. The children worked up quite a sweat! At the end of each game the children had to bow to one another as a sign of respect. Mr Grundy explained that whether you win or lose the game it is traditional in the sport not to show any emotion. At the end of the session the children discussed the qualities that are needed to become an inspiring Aikido player with Mr.Grundy. We agreed that these are hard work, dedication, being active, committing to training and being resilient when faced with challenges and set backs. Year 3 had such a fantastic morning. Thank you to Mr.Grundy for delivering this workshop!


P.S.H.E- Physical Health and Well being

What helps me choose?

To be healthy, nutritious food is needed to provide energy for the body. A variety of food is needed in the diet because different foods contain different substances that are needed to keep you healthy.  An average meal should be made up of one-third carbohydrates and one-third fruit and vegetables, with the remaining one-third split between dairy, protein and a little bit of fat. Year 3 discussed what affects their daily food choices and thought about how many portions of fruit and vegetables they had eaten.

We then played a Burn 2 learn game where the children sorted the food into the different food types. This linked in perfectly with our science topic of exploring that  humans need the right types and amount of nutrition.

Looking after our bodies-Health and Hygiene

Year 3 have also been revisiting how to keep themselves healthy, and one really important thing to be very aware of and improve further is basic hygiene including hand washing to ensure that germs don’t spread. We revised how to wash hands properly and practised this. We discussed that you need to thoroughly rub the soapy, warm  water into your hands whilst singing ‘happy birthday’ twice. Some children were shocked they had to do this for that length of time!  We discussed why. We also talked about the importance of catching the germs in tissues from coughs and sneezes, getting the tissue immediately into the bin and then washing hands again.


Catholic Care- Solving conflicts 

Year 3 had a workshop delivered by Catholic Care on how to solve conflicts. We discussed times when we might have disagreements with our friends and discussed ways to resolve these problems. We looked at categorising them into agreeing to disagree, conflicts that need sorting out but are not urgent and problems that need sorting urgently. We also discussed how it made us feel and who we can talk  to when we have problems. We drew our own helping hands and wrote names of people we can talk to for help when we need it.

Inspiring You Week

To mark our fantastic themed week called ‘Inspiring You’. Year 3 used a dictionary to look up the meaning of the word inspiring and what to inspire means. They thought about the people who inspire them and why.


The children reflected on what they would like to be when they are an adult and why.

“I want to be a vet because I love animals and want to be able to look after them.” Amelia”

“I want to be an inventor because I would invent robots to help people.” Raphael.

“I’m inspired by Bear Grylls and want to become an explorer. I would find out about different plants and animals.” Zac

“I want to be a teacher because I’m inspired by Miss. Costello. I want to teach new things to children.” Lola

” I want to be an athlete because I enjoy running. I know this will be take a lot of hard work but I’m determined and will work hard to exercise.” Marius

” I want to be an artist. I really want to be an illustrator for children’s books.” Shevaun.

Year 3 used the ipads to research how they would achieve their dream jobs and what qualifications they would need to progress to achieve it.


Changes in Britain- The Bronze Age and The Iron Age

In History this half term, the children have continued exploring and finding out all about prehistoric life. Year 3 tested their knowledge and understanding of this time period bu ordering significant prehistoric events onto a timeline. We discussed the word chronological order and added this word to our working wall. The children enjoyed a Burn2learn activity where they had to find the hidden artefacts around school and then place them onto the timeline. We discussed what BC and AD meant on the timelines.


Have a look at some of our timelines. We also had to estimate the date of some of the time intervals and add these to the time line. Finally, we used the IPADS to research a significant event from the prehistoric time period and added this to the time line. There was lots of maths skills involved in this lesson!


Year 3 looked at why the time period The Bronze Age is called the Bronze Age and how bronze was made. We discussed how technology was now changing after the Stone Age.

Geography links

Following this Year 3 identified the countries in Europe were Bronze was made. We used the atlas to locate these countries. We discussed how to use the contents page of the atlas to find the most appropriate map to use. We also discussed what a key is on a map and its purpose. We found different keys in the atlas’ and practised being able to read and understand them. Year 3 then used a blank map of Europe to locate the countries in Europe where bronze was made. We also created our keys to add to our maps. We really enjoyed using the atlas’ and spoke about when they are used and who might need to use them as part of their profession.