Welcome to Year 5!

“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen… can change the world.”  – Malala Yousafzai

Miss Waite

Miss Waite

Y5 Class Teacher (Collective Worship, Library and MFL Co-ordinator)




Physically Active Learning

Mrs Frost

Mrs Frost

Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA)

Dr Prestwich

Dr Prestwich

Teaching Assistant

Year 5 Curriculum Newsletters & Half Term Overviews

Please take a look at our half termly newsletters to find out what we are learning about in Year 5.

Year 5 Newsletter Autumn 1 Year 5 Newsletter Autumn 2  

Year 5 Newsletter Spring 1 Year 5 Newsletter Spring 2

Year 5 Newsletter Summer 1

Please take a look at our half termly overviews to see a more detailed picture into our learning in Year 5.

Year 5 – Spring 2 Half Term Overview  Year 5 – Summer 1 Half Term Overview



Physically Active Learning

In Year 5, we aim to provide our pupils with enjoyable and active learning experiences as often as we can and as and when the curriculum lends itself to such activities! Please take a look through our webpage to see some of the Burn2Learn activities our children enjoy.

Academic Year 2018/19

Welcome back to school! I hope you’ve all had a restful and wonderful summer holiday and are raring to go for a fantastic year in Year 5. Mrs Frost and I are both looking forward to get to know you all and we know we are going to have a fantastic year!

Keep an eye out for all the exciting things we do together, as they will soon pop up on this webpage!

School Trips, Visits and Workshops

It is extremely important to have exciting and engaging experiences to enrich and enhance children’s learning. Therefore, I have planned many trips, visits and workshops in line with the Year 5 curriculum. Please see the school calendar for full details. Here are a few of the opportunities that have been arranged so far for this academic year:

  • One Day Ancient Greek Workshop
  • Shakespeare Theatre Production 
  • RE Youth Ministry Retreat Residential
  • PSHE: SJF Taster Day
  • Murton Park Viking Trip

Y5/6 Statutory Spellings

Please encourage your children to practise these compulsory Year 5 and 6 spellings, these are essential and should be practised alongside spellings set on Spellodrome.

Compulsory Spelling List – Y5&6

Autumn Term 1 2018

The children have settled really well into Year 5 and are proving to be excellent role models now they are in Upper Key Stage 2. They have been introduced to our Hollywood theme to work towards Golden Time. Each day, one child wins the ‘Oscar’ award for impressing myself, Mrs Frost or Mrs Lee. Children can also nominate their peers and if they have noticed something really impressive they can let me know throughout the day. One child wins the Oscar and takes it home for a night and we also have class Oscars which the children collect throughout the half term aiming for Golden Time.

This half term already we have had a drama workshop for Ancient Greece and have had a poet visit us in class. We still have the Shakespeare Company to visit us which I know all UKS2 staff are very excited for!

Please keep visiting our class web page to see what we get up to and what we learn!

Year 5 Collective Worship

Take a look at our Prayer Table in Year 5. This is the focal point of our classroom. We gather around here each morning and we focus all of our prayers this way. We begin our day focusing on it and end our day reflecting on it. We keep Christ at our Centre always.

In Year 5, we have 1-2 child led worships per week and I lead the rest of the worships. We always begin our worships with relaxing music, turning the lights off and turning the candle on to help us to draw and thoughts and focus to that flickering flame – remembering that Jesus is the light of the world. We say our Candle Prayer and our Morning prayer and then listen to the Word of the Lord – sometimes this is a parable or a reading from the Gospels, for example. We spend some time reflecting on the Word for a couple of minutes and we have our own time to talk to God in our mind and in our hearts. We think about how we can live out the Word throughout the day – that might be by doing something above and beyond for someone else, to show our love to God’s creation by picking up one piece of litter, smiling at someone to show our kindness and love to others and many more things. At the end of each day, we come together to think about how we have lived out the Word we listened to in our worship.

In Year 5, collective worship is a time to pray, talk to and develop and strengthen our relationship with God. It can be different for everyone but we respect and appreciate everyone’s thoughts and feelings. Our worships are safe spaces, spaces to relax and be free to talk to God how we wish. Sometimes we do this through silent reflection, praying aloud, singing, dancing and many other ways!

We have been considering how we can care for our Earth, God’s Creation that we were so lucky to receive. The children have been able to think of many ways – all that have linked to our learning in our RE lessons too. We have also started to think about how we care for God’s Creation around the world.

Harvest – Charity: “I try to be just and fair”.

Our statement of the week this week is “I try to be just and fair.” We have been thinking about how it is unfair how some have more than others in our world and how we can work to make things more ‘just and fair’. On a wide scale, we do things all the time through Cafod and Christian Aid but we also do our little bit, for example our Harvest Liturgy and the donations. We also thought about what we can do to help those around us on an even smaller scale. We thought about the famine that is going on in the world and wondered why we have not seen a famine like this for almost a decade. We kept these people in our prayers and also made our own intentions. We thought “What would Jesus do?” We used the Prayer Garden as a way to remind ourselves of the beauty and wonder of our world and how some are suffering so much that they cannot appreciate it. We are using our worship time this week to continue to think about how we can be more just and fair.

One Million Children Praying the Rosary

On the 18th October, the whole school praying the rosary as part of the “One Million Children Praying the Rosary” event. We talked about the mysteries of the rosary and then prayed a rosary together. It was also a nice time for the children to bring in their rosaries from home and I also shared my special rosary with the children that I received during the Sacrament of Confirmation. We gathered around the prayer table together and talked about why it was so special to pray the rosary and linked this back to when Deacon Charlie came to visit us.

We are all Disciples of Jesus

This week, we have focused on our statement of the week which has been “I try to help others when they are in trouble.” We have explored many parables from the Bible and how we have thought about what ‘being in trouble’ means – not necessarily being in trouble at school but being in need, being in a natural disaster, etc. This week, the children led our collective worship for the week and they planned it, delivered it and evaluated it to an exceptional standard. The children were able to use a range of creative ideas to allow the rest of the class to talk to God and to share these ideas in a range of ways too. Thank you to all of these children for their contribution to our collective worship this week in class.



KS2 Collective Worship

Every week, the whole of KS2 join together as a small community to take part in collective worship. This is a special time in our week because we can pause our busy lives, in and outside of the classroom and can take a moment to just be together, listening to the Word of God and considering what this means for us.

Year 5 have led their first Key Stage worship this week which made reference to the Parable of the Hidden Treasure (Matthew 13: 44). The children decided to hide some jewellery underneath a cloth and tell the rest of the key stage. This idea linked to the parable because the children had to believe that there was jewellry underneath the cloth – they could not see it, they had to trust and believe i the Y5 children that they were telling the truth. This is what we do every day with our faith, we cannot see God but we trust and believe that he is around us always. This reminded us that the Kingdom of God is very special indeed so we took some time out of our day to reflect on how special it is to us and what we can do today to remind us of this.

Well done to Year 5 for a very inspiring and engaging Key Stage Worship!

Year 5’s Class Saint Feast Day 

St Therese“The Little Flower of Jesus” 1873-1897

On Monday 1st October, we celebrated the Feast Day of St Therese. We have been learning about our class Saint and know that she was one of the youngest women to follow her call from God and become a nun. The Pope recognised this and this is one of the contributing factors to her becoming a Saint. The children have spent some time doing their own research in class and we reflected on this during our celebrations. The children decided to have a mini tea party so in true British style we drank tea and ate cupcakes and other goodies!

We had a silent reflection to keep St Therese in our prayers and to thank her for her contributions to God’s world. We had time to think about why she is special and inspirational to us. She followed her calling from God and she truly lived the way God and Jesus teach us to. She is an inspiration and we all promised to live more like St Therese!

Macmillan Coffee Morning

In school, we held a Macmillan coffee morning to raise money for the charity. As parents, carers, grandparents and friends joined together in the ICT suite, each class joined in with the biggest fundraising coffee morning in the country. Each child had a biscuit too and we thought and reflected on why people around the country do this for the charity – how the charity help families and those that are sick. We thanked God for our good health and our ability to fundraise and support others. We asked God to help us and pray for those who are sick or in hospital at this time. Thank you to Miss Clilverd for organising for all children to join in with the coffee morning!

Harvest Liturgy

We had a fantastic morning during our Harvest Liturgy where we came together as a community: children, teachers, parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles. We thanked and praised God for the wonderful things he gives us – food to eat, water to drink, a safe place, land to grow crops to reap and sow. We also thought about those who are less fortunate than us – in our local community and in the wider world. We know that there are many who suffer in poorer countries, but we also must remember those closer to us who are also suffering. We asked for donations which the Mini Vinnies are going to visit and share with the SVP Centre in Leeds and the Franciscan Sisters in Wetherby. Thank you to everyone who made donations and well done to all involved for another fantastic Harvest Liturgy!


RE – Gifts from God

This half term we will spend time reflecting on our Gifts from God and parables that link to this. We will begin by digging deep into the meaning of the Creation Story (Genesis 1) and will think about how this story has shapes religion and how it shapes our lives too. We will consider our own gifts and talents and will think about how we can show our gratitude and thanks to God.

Genesis 1: Creation

Year 5 enjoyed using role play and drama to act out the Creation Story (Genesis 1) and placed an emphasis on the recurring line “and God was pleased with what he saw” or “and God said it was good” – depending on which version of the story you read. We talked about the meaning of this story and why the Creation story is so important in the Bible and what it means to us and our lives. The children talked about the fact that without this story, the Bible, humans, earth and everything God created would cease to exist. This raised some fascinating questions about Creation and we then began to ask God our questions about Creation. We all then tried to answer one question that a child asked “Why don’t you perform miracles any more?” This opened up such a detailed discussion – some children disagreeing and saying that God still performs miracles because he answers our prayers, others saying he doesn’t need to perform miracles because we all believe in him. The children were so passionate about this which is something I love to see and hear during our RE lessons.


In Year 5, we have also been working on our Bible skills – being able to reference parables in the stories is very important across our curriculum – not just in RE but also to help us plan our own worships and make reference to these throughout our days. We recapped the structure of a Bible reference (Book Chapter: Verses) and then played Bible bingo to see who could be the quickest at finding the references/parables. This helped us to work on explanations of the Creation story as I wanted the children to find links across the Bible that refer to caring for and looking after God’s creation.

Using our Bible skills and our in depth discussions about the Creation story we all as a class started to think about people that do care for God’s Creation and people that don’t. We learnt that we call these people co-creators and de-creators. The children began to explore the actions of both and were trying to reason with both kinds of people – this led on to discussing how we could persuade a de-creator to become a co-creator and the children came up with some fantastic ideas!

We explored God’s creation using artwork this week and linked this to the story of Creation in Genesis 1. The children used their hands as the ‘tree’ and the coloured dots around the tree as all the elements of God’s creation. The tree represents God’s whole creation – us and everything else in his world. Year 5 were eager to think of what each colour could represent and decided that black represented all kinds of sin: war, famine, pollution, poverty etc. but that amongst the rest of the colour – the sin didn’t seem so bad. This got us all thinking about the world we live in today – how much good there is in our world and how, often, many focus on the bad. The children made some excellent insights and showed their understanding by linking to the bible. For example, Maya made links to “Love thy neighbour as yourself” (Matthew 22:36-40).

Genesis 2: Adam & Eve / Genesis 3: The Fall

We have now moved on to exploring the Book of Genesis further. The children were given scripts for The Fall and had to explore the what happened in the Garden of Eden. Each child had a role – whether this was God, Adam, Eve, the serpent or the narrator. We started performing in the classroom and made our way to the woods in our school grounds. The children used their surroundings in such an effective way that enhanced their performances even more. The children had to explore how they thought each character could have felt, whose fault they thought it was that Eve took a bite from fruit of the tree of life and knowledge. We also discussed why they thought God put that specific tree in the Garden of Eden.

“Maybe it was God’s plan all along – to create a perfect world, to place Adam and Eve on his perfect earth to then tempt them with fruit from the forbidden tree so that they knew good and bad, right and wrongs. Then sin came into the world but this was God’s plan because he knew he was going to send his Son to save us.” – Olivia & Finlay

English – Myths and Legends

This half term we will study myths and legends linking to our Ancient Greece topic. So far, we have explored Heracles and the 12 labours (also known as Hercules) and have learnt about one of his first labours – the Nemean Lion. The children have been writing descriptions of the lion, using more adventurous vocabulary – such as adjectives and adverbs and using thesauruses to up level these! We will continue to explore Hercules’ labours and write a character and setting description relating to these myth. We will then explore other myths and legends such as Medusa and the Trojan Horse – linking to our Drama workshop!

We have been working on our use of ‘vivid description’ in our writing. We have explored writing techniques to have great impact on the reader including adjectives, adverbs and a range of figurative language such as similes and alliteration. The children have really impressed me with their excellent writing skills!



In Year 5, we have a huge focus on spellings. Each morning, we practise our weekly spellings and any spellings we have gained through our work in class. Spellodrome is a great way to practise spellings but we also have 9 fun and creative ways to practise spellings in school too!

Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night

The Shakespeare Theatre Company visited St Joseph’s and as always, encapsulated us with pure enjoyment! The plot of the story and the contrasting characters really engaged and intrigued the children – Sir Toby Belch and Malvolio, two completely different characters but both absolutely hilarious in different ways! All children and staff watching were brought to tears (laughing tears) watching the fantastic performance. The cast of the performance involved the children in being the characters, the setting, the atmosphere and a fantastic, memorable experience was had by all! This is going to be an excellent stimulus for our writing! Thank you to the Friends of St Joseph’s and all of the parents, grandparents and carers who support their fundraising, as without this, we simply couldn’t arrange these experiences for the children.

Maths – Place Value

Year 5 have really impressed me so far in mathematics. We have explored numbers in lots of different ways, including using counters, Base 10 and numicon to represent and visualise numbers in different ways. Year 5 have learnt how to read, write, compare and order numbers up to one million and have worked really hard on their rounding skills. Place value is one of the most important topics in maths as it underpins everything else we learn about – if children can be secure on this aspect of mathematics then this will be an excellent foundation for the rest of Year 5 Maths!

Place value has really become embedded in our daily practice now and the children are confident with rounding numbers up to 1,000,000 to the nearest 10, 100, 1000, 10,000 and 100,000 and have proven to be confident in reading, writing, ordering and comparing numbers. We will be moving on to addition and subtraction next!

In Year 5, we encourage and value independence. This includes the children challenging themselves and choosing their level of difficulty in their work depending on how confident they are. The children really enjoy using the Chilli Challenge as a way of self-differentiating and it has boosted the children’s confidence in ‘having a go’!


Science – Earth & Space

The children enjoyed learning a range of mnemonics to remember the order of the planets and also making their own up. We have been researching interesting facts about the planets in our solar system and will continue to learn about the size and movement of the Earth and Moon in relation to the Sun.

In Year 5, we love active lessons to help us enjoy and embed our learning. This week, we have been exploring the Earth and Moon’s movement in relation to the Sun. We have learnt that the Earth is tilted on an axis and rotates once a day, we learnt that this is what creates day and night. We learnt that the Sun is a very large star and that other stars are still in the sky during the day, the sun is just so bright that we don’t see them. We also began to explore why we can see the Moon during the night – and why it looks like the moon has its own light.

To describe the movement of the Earth in relation to the Sun and Moon: Day and Night.

Year 5 have been thinking about why we have day and night – the children have already been asking inquisitive questions about this and have been talking amongst themselves as to why we have day and night and how the Earth moves around the Sun. Today in science, we used a concept cartoon to explore different views that children may have and to see if anyone agreed with any of them.

Some children decided that they agreed with Jason, some thought Joanne might be on the right lines – but some children were confident that all three children were wrong! After talking about how the Earth actually moves, through videos from the BBC and through visual demonstrations – including the children being the Moon/Sun. We discovered that the Moon orbits the Earth 12 times a year because it takes it one whole month to orbit the Earth. Whilst this is happening, the Earth orbits the Sun and completes a full orbit once a year.

The reason we have day and night is because of the way the Earth is tilted on its axis and because it completes one full rotation every 24 hours. For example, when England or the part of the Earth that England is on is facing the Sun, it is day time, but when the Earth rotates and this part of the Earth is now facing away from the Sun – it is night time.

The children then made models to show the movement of the Earth, Sun and Moon. This really helped all children to visualise the orbits of the Earth and Sun.


The finished models!

To explore how the sun appears to change position in the sky through shadows.

In Science, we have been learning about how the Earth orbits the Sun but how the Earth also rotates (completing one full rotation every 24 hours). We discussed how the sun appears to move during the day but talked about why this actually was – because the Earth is actually rotating which means we are moving, not the sun. This was proven by exploring how shadows change length and position throughout the day. We had to go outside at every o’clock hour – starting at 10am and ending with 3pm – this meant that we were extremely busy!

Take a look to see what happened throughout the day… You can see in some of the pictures that my shadow moved throughout the day – we used chalk to draw around the shadow and then used metre sticks to measure how long the shadow was at each hour. We found that the longest and thinnest shadow was at 10am which was 5.8 metres and the shortest shadow was at 1pm at 3.65 metres. We were able to clearly see that the Earth rotated because the sun was in a different position to where I was standing. This seemed a difficult concept to grasp but all children were so excited to get back outside to see how the shadow will have moved again – meaning they were beginning to see how the position of the shadow proved that the Earth rotates!

History – Ancient Greece

One Day Creative Workshop

We have begun our very exciting first topic in Year 5 which is Ancient Greece. In our second week of Year 5, we were very lucky to have a One Day Drama Workshop based on Ancient Greece. We explored the famous Trojan war, politics and the hierarchy of Ancient Greek times and a range of myths and legends (Medusa and Pandora’s Box being 2 of them). The children had so much fun exploring all of these things through a range of drama techniques – many that we are going to use throughout the rest of the year. Thank you Annabel and thank you One Day!


Linking to our Science topic, in Art this half term we will explore spheres (not Sophias). We had to learn how to say this tricky word – at least we will be very knowledgeable of this shape when we move on to Geometry in Maths.

We started our Art lessons by exploring the blackness and hardness of different pencils, identifying the pencils that would create a really thick, black shade and the pencils would create a very light shade. The children were eager to start practising their drawings so once they had experimented with shading they moved on to trying to create shadows.


Mr Cooper has joined St Joseph’s again (Our Total Sports coach) and has been working with the children on their general sporting skills. He recapped the movements that you have in sport, such as throwing, jumping, running, agility and so on. More recently, the children have been working on their throwing and catching skills and their attacking and defending skills through a range of really fun games. I saw evidence of some fantastic team work and peer encouragement from the children which is always great to see!

The children also had a taster of hockey more recently and this worked on skills such as hand eye coordination, posture, control of a hockey stick and a ball and also their spatial awareness to ensure they were only touching their ball and also not running into anyone. To help them with this, they had a go first just with the hockey stick and ball and eventually once they became confident using their hockey stick, we added a bean bag that they had to keep balanced on their head. This encouraged the children to really think about their posture and the way they were holding the hockey stick.

Run a Mile

In Year 5, we have started to use the “Run a Mile” initiative to not only be healthy and make sure we get the exercise we need throughout the week but to also boost our positive outlooks and our learning attitudes. All of the children have loved it – especially using the special equipment to measure out how many laps of the field amounted to 1 mile.


In PE, the children were developing skills of refereeing a game and coaching teams on how to get better. This involved many skills, including communicative skills – to be able to speak loudly and firmly to stop and play games. We used the game hockey which was extremely fun, yet competitive! Each referee had to explain to both teams their rules, e.g. how to use the hockey stick and what actions were not allowed. All children excelled in this skill and we are looking forward to develop these skills even more.

Playmakers Award

The children were given their certificates for taking part in the Playmaker training in Year 4 on the last Friday before half term. This involved discussing what they had learnt during the one day intensive training course, receiving their certificate and then playing and recapping some of the activities they had learnt – including being able to lead their own games and activities.


Scoot to School Training

This week, on Monday 1st October, Year 5 had Scoot to School Training which they thoroughly enjoyed! We recapped on the Green Cross Code which is what we use all the time when crossing the road – that means, Think! Stop! Look! Listen! (and keep looking and listening)!

The children first got a helmet and a scooter and had a go at scooting around the playground. Once they were confident on their scooters they had some agility style games to get them used to using the brake and the steering on their scoots. Then, we went outside of school on to the pathways to learn how to be extra safe when scooting near roads. The children had an excellent time and all of them now know how to scoot safer on pathways near roads. Even Mrs Frost and I got involved!

We have an assembly next week to follow up on this learning!


Every Thursday we have a music teacher from Art Forms that comes in and works with Year 5 for an hour. So far, Year 5 have developed their body percussion skills and have learnt a range of rhythms and beats and begun to use the “Bamboo Tamboo” instrument sticks and have been working on their hand eye coordination as well as their rhythmic and musical skills to improve their timings and develop a repertoire of rhythms and sounds.

Autumn Term 2 2018

Welcome back to school. We hope you have had a very restful October half term. We have a very exciting half term ahead of us and are very looking forward to the build up of Advent and dare I mention it….Christmas!! This is the lead up to mine and one of Mrs Frost’s favourite time of year and we are sure it is some of the children’s favourite time of year too!

The children earned all of their class Oscars last half term and had their Golden Time treat on the last Friday before we broke up! This means they have a clean slate again – hopefully they can earn all of the class Oscars again and will have another treat before the Christmas holidays! Please see pictures below from our Golden Time treat before half term – we watched Hercules which linked to our Ancient Greece and English writing topic. The children used all of the bean bags, cushions and blankets from our reading corner and made themselves cosy to watch the film! Everyone had a great afternoon!

RE – The Commandments

To retell the story of the Ten Commandments

Year 5 enjoyed using role play, drama and freeze frames to explore the story of Moses on Mount Sinai receiving then Ten Commandments from God. The children acted out a range of commandments and also Moses actually being given the commandments too. They have shown an excellent understanding of the Ten Commandments so far! We have explored what life would be like with and without rules and have also thought about why it is important to have rules.


Armistice and Remembrance Day

To mark the special commemoration of 100 years since Armistice, we have been doing lots of work all around this and Remembrance. We have used this as a stimulus across the curriculum, including English, History and Art.

‘In Flanders Fields’ by John McCrae

We started by looking at John McCrae’s “In Flanders Fields” poem and thought about the meaning of it. The children then got the opportunity to then learn the poem and add some actions to the poem and then perform it. The children really enjoyed it and although some language used in the poem was difficult to understand the children were fascinated that John McCrae has been a medical solider and had written this in 1915 (one year into World War I).

The children really enjoyed performing to the rest of the class. “In Flanders Fields” is my favourite poem and always has been since I was at primary school myself so I was so glad the children enjoyed it too!

Remembrance Day Non-Chronological Report

After studying the poem and learning a little background about what the war might have been like, the children learnt about the features of a non-chronological report to be able to write their own all about Remembrance Day. The children had an opportunity to spend some time researching in the planning stage of the writing – this included researching the difference between Remembrance Day, Remembrance Sunday and Armistice and why poppies are such an important symbol for Remembrance. The children then wrote their own non-chronological reports on Remembrance Day. They were fantastic! They then wanted to print off pictures to make their report as interesting as possible! Myself and Mrs Frost were very impressed!


Show and Share with Parents

Year 5 have had an absolutely brilliant first week back to school! This was because the children were able to share a lesson with their Mums and Dads! We invited parents into school to join in with our class Collective Worship and then a Maths lesson. We used a range of fun, active ways to learn our times tables – something a little different to the rote learning that we so often use with times tables! We got our heart rates going and had lots of fun whilst making our brains work hard! The children had an absolutely fantastic time and the feedback we received from parents was extremely positive! A lot of fun was had by everyone, including myself and Mrs Frost!

Here are some pictures from Wednesday’s Show and Share session. More pictures from Friday’s session to follow…




We have started our new topic of Materials and have begun by revising the states of matter (solids, liquids and gases). We discussed how the particles are formed in all states and did this through a range of ways. The children pretended to be the particles to get an idea of how they moved and how they were formed. We found that in a solid, the particles are formed very tightly together and the slight movement is through a vibration so the children stood super close together and just ‘shivered’ to allow them to move slightly. For a liquid, I gave the children a specific area to move in and they were able to slide past each other. For a gas, the children were completely free and were able to run around and go ‘crazy’ as they called it – this was a really active way to demonstrate how the particles are formed in the different states.

We then drew how the particles are represented scientifically and described how the particles move. The children then had to group and classify a range of materials, such as oxygen, sand, water, cream etc. some that were quite difficult too!

Separating Mixtures: Yorkshire Water Project

The children were working separating a mixture in Science. We pretended that Yorkshire Water had sent them a sample of dirty water from the River Wharfe and they had to work out how to clean it. The children hadn’t actually used any of the equipment before so the initial part of this Science lesson was exploring with the science equipment and finding out substances were in the mixture. The children then had to plan how they were going to separate the mixture. This involved picking out larger substances such as rocks, leaves and paper clips, using a sieve to remove the smaller substances such as some of the mud, little stones/rock parts and other small substances. The children were then unsure of how to remove the remaining dirt from the water to make it clear. They than began to experiment with filter paper and funnels. It was actually Isobel, Sophia and R’Dli’s group that obtained the clean water first and they were so pleased! By the end of the science lesson, all children had managed to obtain clean water from the filthy, dirty mixture. A very fun and educational science lesson indeed!


As part of our D&T project, we had to explore electric circuits. The children began by building simple circuits that contained a battery and a bulb. This then advanced bit by bit to include a switch, and eventually a motor. We recapped the scientific symbols for these items within a circuit and the children then had a go at drawing the circuits in their books scientifically. We learnt that when the electricity travels round the wires this is called a current. We explored this with our actual bodies too – the switch acts as a ‘door’ to let the current pass through or to not let it through. We have these in our rooms – light switches etc. We also learnt that the metal part of the wire is called the conductor as this ‘conducts’ the electricity – without a conductor, electricity could not travel. The children then wanted to know why there was a coloured plastic piece around the metal on the wires and we talked about what would happen if the metal was just open and exposed. Therefore, we learnt that the plastic acts as an insulator – it protects the electricity from electrocuting or escaping and allows it travel its specific path. We learnt so much in such a short amount of time and we were then able to apply this to our D&T project!


This half term, we are continuing our topic of Ancient Greece. The children loved it last half term and it is one of my favourite periods in history too. To start with, we have learnt even more about the Ancient Greek gods and goddesses. We did through a really active, blood-pumping activity. The children had clues given to them on pieces of paper and around the school were envelopes with information/pictures about the gods/goddesses. They had to use the clues and figure out where the envelopes were placed around the school and then come back together in the classrooms in their groups and match the pictures, names of the gods/goddesses and the information. The children then wrote fact files about gods/goddesses of their choice.



Armistice/Remembrance Day

The children designed their own artwork based on inspiration taken from the poem “In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae and a piece of artwork that highlights the importance of the symbol of the poppy. They used a range of colours to build up the layers in their artwork and then added statements in their artwork such as crosses or silhouettes. Some children did paintings similar and some took inspiration from the poem and created their own artwork.



Year 5 enjoyed a taster session into fencing this week and they absolutely loved it – I even joined in with the children and it certainly was so much fun! They learnt about the fencing stance called “en garde” and the range of equipment used. They also learnt a little bit of history into the sport and about the history of right/left handed traditions. Fencing classes run in Harrogate every Wednesday and flyers are available from the office for those interested.


As the children have earned the Playmakers award, we have asked the children to start leading warm ups in PE lessons to ensure that all children are building their confidence, communication and leadership skills. Warm ups need to get our hearts pumping to get our muscles ready for physical activity so it great to see the range of activities that the children come up with! Myself and Mr Cooper even join in with the warm up activities too!

The children have been working on their dodging, catching and throwing skills in PE and enjoyed through an adapted game of dodgeball outside. We are looking forward to develop our invasion skills even more.

Design & Technology – Judderbot Project

Year 5 had a fantastic D&T themed day with a huge project to complete! They began by recapping on some Science skills that were needed to be successful in the D&T work – this was electricity. The children then familiarised themselves with the equipment and materials needed to create the Judderbot. They then explored the instructions and read through them, identifying any areas that needed more support – this used their English and Reading (inference) skills to be able to find out what to do. Then, measuring using a ruler was involved to have the correct length of wood plinths and pieces of card. We were very busy! 

This was half way through the project and the day… the Judderbots were coming along nicely!

The children then had to use their wood skills and use saws to cut through some small pieces of wood that were needed to create the Judderbot before assembling it all together. Before they had nearly finished, the children used their knowledge of understanding of electricity to wire up the circuit so that the Judderbot would actually move (this was after a long process of building and assembling the Judderbot).

Finally, the children then used their Art and Design skills to create an attractive and pleasant looking body for the Judderbot which would complement the design and build of the Judderbot. The children had so much fun and myself and Mrs Frost really enjoyed it too! Miss Milivojevic even came in a couple of times to see how we were getting on and was absolutely amazed with the results. We will use our D&T projects in a Computing project next half term so watch this space!

Some of our finished products! The children and the staff were extremely pleased with the results! We can’t wait for our next D&T day!




Before the Christmas holidays, the children received a Road Safety Christmas themed pantomime. It was very light-hearted and had a great comedic value that brought the themes and messages of Road Safety across to the children really nicely!  We really enjoyed it as a whole school and thank the Leeds Road Safety team for coming out and performing for us!

Spring Term 1 2019

I hope you had a very restful and peaceful Christmas holiday. We are excited to be back at school and have got some very exciting things lined up for this half term. Our whole class theme this half term is all around “Our World” with a specific focus on the wonderful picture book called “The Arrival” by Shaun Tan. 

Please keep checking our web page to see all the exciting things we get up to!

RE: Inspirational People

This half term we will be learning about Inspirational People around the world and how this links to being a true disciple.

The children have already started to consider what makes an inspirational person and the qualities and traits of someone that is inspirational. They have considered the people in their own lives that inspire them and others whom they recognise as being inspirational. We will move on to thinking about how we can use our own gifts from God to inspire others and we will learn about key and famous people that are now known for being inspirational.

KS2 Collective Worship

Year 5 led their first KS2 worship of this half term and it was all about Rejoicing in the Lord. Our statement of the week was ‘I can laugh and have fun’ and during the worship, the girls that prepared and delivered talked about the gift of happiness and laughing that God gave us.

Year 5 Residential – Youth Ministry Retreat at Emmaus Youth Village

Year 5 had an absolutely fantastic time on their residential this week. As always, behaviour was absolutely impeccable and the children really represented St Joseph’s fantastically! We are all extremely proud of them!


The theme was “Shine” and the children responded so well to this theme. The metaphor that was used was – if you were walking in darkness and had a lantern, you wouldn’t cover the light, you would let the light shine to guide your way. We all have lights inside of us, talents from God and we need to use those to let our lights shine!

Welcome Activities

We had lots of welcome activities to get to know another group of children who were also a Year 5 class from St Mary and St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Primary School near Gateshead. Lots of our children commented on how quickly they had formed new friendships and the whole group got on really well as a whole. The activities included learning some new songs and dances to use throughout their stay and some fun games to get to know each other’s names.

Our Accommodation

The children were very excited on the bus in the morning to find out who they were sharing a room with and when we had time to settle into our chalets, the children were very grown up in unpacking their belongings, hanging things on hangers in their wardrobes. It was all very exciting – especially the bunk beds!

Adventure into the Countryside

We then went on a long, freezing, but fun walk to a local park. This was another opportunity to bond with the other school – through a friendly football match, rounders match, tig, frisbee and so much more! Even though it was freezing, everybody had so much fun! Some children said this was their favourite part of the whole residential! Not to mention, the beautiful scenery we could take in on the walk – we were very lucky with the beautiful weather!

Reflecting on the Creation Story

Whilst we were at the park, we continued to think about the Creation Story we had heard before we left on our walk. Becca asked each child and adult to pick up a blade of grass. She asked everyone to study that blade of grass and think about what they could see – the colours, textures, length and size of their blade of grass. Each child, when asked, made different comments about their blades of grass – some were dark green, some were light green, some had a hint of yellow, some were really long, some not so long. Becca explained that we are like those blades of grass – they are all individual and unique in their own way but together they create a beautiful field. We are all individual and unique but together, we can be a great team!

It’s a Wonderful Life

When we returned back to the Youth Village, we were told a great story about a man called George – the adults recognised this story to be from “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Becca started the story to give the children a bit of background and then part of the film was played. It showed George say “I wish I had never been born” – which then came true and he could see what the world would have been like if he hadn’t been born. The children commented that because George wasn’t born lots of bad things were happening, for example, his brother had died. The clip ended with George crying saying “I wish I had my old life back!” 

The children then were split into groups and had to create a piece of drama to show what they thought happened after George was crying. The pieces of drama were amazing – some groups thought that George gave all the money back, some groups thought that George saved a man from drowning and that Mr Potter was taken to jail, another group’s drama piece just showed George at home with his family eating a nice meal. The children then watched the ending and found that everybody in the town where George lived had raised funds to help George pay back his debts. His brother then said “You are the richest man in this town!” Some children thought this meant rich with money, but the children discussed that actually he had meant rich with happiness, love and friendship. 

Tuck Shop!

After dinner, the children were very excited to spend their pocket money on the tuck shop! They used their Maths skills to add up how much their items they wanted to buy would cost and how much change they should get from their money!

Thank you to Emmaus Youth Village for such a wonderful experience! We feel very grateful to have attended the fantastic retreat and will never forget it!





This half term, linking to Our World, we will study the fantastic picture book by Shaun Tan. 

“This silent picture novel is the story of every migrant, every refugee, every displaced person, and a tribute to all those who have made the journey.”

The children have been really intrigued and engrossed already with this picture book. Having no text whatsoever has really allowed the children to engage their own imagination with the story and they have been really excited to share their own thoughts.

We have started our English topic with writing a diary entry in role as one of the characters. The story starts with a man who is packing up his belongings to embark on a journey. The pictures take the reader through the morning of when the father leaves and it shows him saying goodbye to what we think must be his wife and daughter. The children chose either the father, mother or daughter to write in the viewpoint of. I am excited to see what other ideas the children come up with throughout this story.

Take a look at our learning wall in our classroom so far…

Thank you Letters to Emmaus Youth Village

After our fantastic residential trip, Year 5 wanted to use their skills of writing formal letters to write a thank you letter to the staff at Emmaus Youth Village. They have done a brilliant job and we now have a big envelope full of letters to send to the Youth Village!

Instructions – How to Fill a Bucket

Linking to our PSHE Choose Respect (Anti-Bullying) Fortnight, we have been writing instructions in English. We started by recapping the features of instructions. This included: a title to tell the reader what the instructions are about, an introduction to give the reader more information about what they are making/doing through the instructions, an equipment/ingredients/you will need list, the method and a conclusion and any top tips you might want to give the reader.

Our stimulus was linked to the bucket filling activity we did last week. We were all writing instructions on how to fill someone’s buckets – this was a great started to the week as we all got secret Bucket Buddies whose buckets we have to secretly fill over the week without them knowing. 

The children were so excited to get writing their instructions and they had so many wonderful ideas – for example, the children said to fill someone’s bucket you would need a sprinkle of laughter, a cup full of love, 1x 10cm long smile and much more! The ideas were so creative!

We started by planning – this included planning each section of the instructions as to not miss anything out! We also recapped imperative (bossy) verbs and time connectives to use in our writing. 

The final results are great and I have really enjoyed reading their instructions – the children really do know how to fill someone’s bucket and I hope this comes in useful throughout the week when they have to fill their Secret Bucket Buddy’s bucket too!




We have started the half term with a Statistics focus and have begun to study line graphs. I have really enjoyed teaching this as once you understand the key parts of a line graph they are really easy to use. The children have developed their understanding of y and x axes and the way they link. They have also studied the key features of a line graph such as axis labels, a chart title and a key. They have read and interpreted line graphs and have spotted errors in pre-drawn graphs and have had a go at drawing their own. 

The children realised that the key to a good line graph is ensuring that the scale has equally spaced intervals, once the x and y axes are complete, plotting the data is really easy. We have really enjoyed our first week in Maths and will be moving on now to reading and interpreting tables, two way tables and timetables. 

The children are now very secure with Statistics and have told me that they really enjoyed this part of Maths. They have realised that these skills will actually transfer across to many other subjects as we have already used bar graphs and tables in Science and bar graph in Geography too!

Perimeter and Area

We have moved on to measuring and calculating the perimeter and area of rectangles and compound shapes. The children have demonstrated that they are really skilled in this area so we have been able to revise the basics and really deepen our understanding through reasoning and problem solving!

This is what we have in our classroom to help us remember what perimeter and area are!

We have also enjoyed using Burn 2 Learn activities in our Maths – the famous ‘Tiggy Triangles’ that some of our parents enjoyed during the Show and Share session last half term. We used this activity in Maths to calculate the perimeter of shapes, to find missing lengths of shapes when given the total perimeter and to think about what the sides could be. This had to be quick thinking but also tested their knowledge on perimeter! All of the children really enjoyed themselves and found this helped them also with their knowledge and understanding of perimeter.


This week, we moved on to looking at equivalent fractions. We tried to make the lesson as practical as possible as in Year 5, we think that practical lessons are best for fractions! The children worked really hard to match the fractions with the pictorial representations to show their equivalence. We will be moving on to converting improper fractions to mixed numbers and vice versa!



This half term, we will continue our topic of Materials. The children loved this topic last half term and really enjoyed the investigative nature of then work.

Already, the children have written a letter to Yorkshire Water to explain how they separated a mixture of dirty water and how they came to obtain clean water. This was through a long process of separating with their hands and a sieve and then a more complex process called filtering using filter paper and funnels. The children learned that patience was key and a thorough investigation achieved the best results.

To recover a substance from a solution.

We have revised how a substance dissolves in a liquid to form a solution and we are now observing to see how we can recover that substance from a solution. The children dissolved salt into a small amount of water and once all the salt had dissolved and formed that solution they poured it into a petri dish. They have then placed their petri dishes on a surface that they can spend time observing over the week to see what happens. The children predicted that the water would ‘evaporate’ to leave the salt in the bottom of the petri dish. We are going to continue to observe this over time (which is one of our Working Scientifically objectives) and see what actually happens!

Here is what we have so far…

We have continued to think about dissolving and have thought of scientific evidence we can use to support/refute arguments/ideas. The children discussed what they thought the words support/refute mean and decided this was like agreeing or disagreeing with someone. We used a concept cartoon to address some ideas and the children had a discussion in their talk partners and in groups as to who they agreed/disagreed with and why and how they could back this up!

These were the results we found after a 5-7 days of waiting. We found that the water evaporated, leaving the salt solid particles in the petri dishes. The children are going to use their results and create some scientific diagrams in Computing to explain the process of recovering a solution. Year 5 loved coming into class on a morning to see if their solutions had changed – it took a long time for anything to happen, but suddenly, overnight, we saw salt in every single petri dish!

The children used their Computing skills to create labelled diagrams to explain the reversible change that they were able to observe over time. Their task was to insert the images into a word document, insert arrows to label the petri dish and the solution (explaining what it was) and then to insert the picture of the salt after it had been recovered and explain how the salt had appeared again – due to evaporation! (Where a liquid turns into a gas).

Reversible and Irreversible Changes

We have been studying reversible changes for a while now and now know that some mixtures and solutions can be separated (which means some of these changes are reversible, e.g. a salt solution can be recovered through evaporation as we have recently discovered so this is reversible). However, we have now moved on to looking at irreversible changes. 

We started with a Burn2Learn activity to explore all the kinds of changes that we can experience with common materials we might find at school or in our houses. Some of these included frying an egg, cooking popcorn in the microwave, baking a cake, toasting some bread etc. All of these changes we realised are irreversible because we cannot ever get the original material back!

We organised the changes that we found into ‘reversible’ and ‘irreversible’ using hoops from the PE cupboard. We then all gathered round to see if we got the same answers – there were two changes that we were not sure of. Some children thought that wax melting and miking oil and water together were irreversible. So we came back inside and watched some videos BBC Bitesize to see if that could help us – we realised both of these changes were reversible!

We then learned how carbon is made. This is chemical reactions between the wick of a candle and a flame. The only way to create carbon is by reducing the oxygen to the flame – enough so as not to put the flame out. I demonstrated this with a candle and some scissors as this was the only thing we could think of that wouldn’t be damaged from the flame but would show the carbon. It worked and the children were fascinated! 

Irreversible Reactions – Chemical Changes

Today in Science, we explored an irreversible chemical reactions. This was after the children became interested with what happened when vinegar and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) has mixed. We began by seeing what happens when vinegar and baking soda are mixed together. The children predicted that an ‘explosion’ would happen – I asked the children what evidence they had of this, how this might not necessarily be a reasonable prediction. The children predicted that the vinegar and baking soda would mix to cause a foam/rising substance. First, we had to explore our materials!

We labelled our resources and equipment so we all knew what we would be using during the lesson. Then, we worked together as a whole class to demonstrate the irreversible chemical change that takes place when vinegar and baking soda are mixed. We watched and observed as members of the class helped to demonstrate the chemical reaction.

The children learned that when vinegar and baking soda are mixed together, they form a gas called “Carbon Dioxide” otherwise known as CO2 and that this is the gas we breathe out. We then explored the question: What would happen to a balloon if this gas had nowhere to go? Some children predicted that the balloon would pop, some children predicted the balloon would shoot off the neck of the bottle and others predicted it would just inflate. Everyone had a go!

These were our results!

Please click on the links below to see this science lesson in action (Videos)!

Step 1: Set up the bottle with the vinegar and the balloon with the baking soda.

Step 2: Pour the baking soda into the bottle and see what happens!


This half term, we are moving on to a Geography focus and we are studying Our World. We will look at the similarities and differences between different countries around the world and the one we live in and we will explore the geographical characteristics of the locations where people leave their homes to find refuge. We will analyse data and other information to draw conclusions about locations around the world, such as distribution maps. Learning about the rate of immigration in a particular place might be able to tell us about that country’s economic status, distribution maps that show weather and climate temperatures can tell us about the living conditions of that location. I am very excited about this topic!

We have started our Geography topic with recapping the continents, oceans and major seas of the world. The children enjoyed using the atlases for this task and were quite quick at identifying and locating the aforementioned. We then labelled our large map on our learning wall so we always had that knowledge for future reference. We moved on to then study some important geographical language: for example, latitude, longitude, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, Equator, Prime Meridian etc. These are all very wordy and quite tricky to understand! We did our best at understanding it and discovered this new vocabulary through a Burn 2 Learn treasure hunt activity in the playground – getting active whilst we learn is one of our favourite things! We then drew these ‘invisible’ lines on the large map together, again so we have these for future reference.

Here is our ever-changing learning wall for Geography!

The children were really engaged and hooked with exploring a range of different pictures to get them thinking about refugees around the world. I wanted to really tap in to some of the stereotypes the children may have had about refugees and get them thinking about what opinions they may have and why that might be. The children then started to look more closely at a picture of a beautiful, stunning temple and a picture of sheer destruction. They came up with a wide range of adjectives and descriptive words/phrases to describe both pictures and both were of such a contrast. 

I then explained to the children that the pictures were from the same place. The beautiful, stunning picture was Syria before the war and the picture of destruction was Syria after the war. I shared a story with the children of a refugee I met who had lived in Syria before the war, had a job and a good life and then after the war had to come over to the UK to live in safety. The children were really shocked that it could be the same place but it was also a ‘Eureka’ moment because the children realised that sometimes not everything is as it seems. This is what the children came up with. They were really surprised that there was such a contrast of words and description on the flipchart paper and that that could be possibly be the same place! We are going to use the feeling we had of contrasting the pictures and then finding out they were the same place in some writing next week.

Year 5 wrote fantastic letters to change someone’s view about refugees. They had a homework research task to collate their ideas before the writing process in class and came up with so many brilliant ideas as to why refugees should be treated equally, fairly and with respect. For example, the children learnt that refugees don’t actually want to move to another country, they are forced out of their home. They actually work really, really hard in the jobs they manage to get in their country of refuge and some of those jobs the national citizens sometimes wouldn’t want to do. The children’s letters were formal, informative and really struck a chord with the importance of treating everyone with respect. Year 5 naturally linked this to the commandment of loving others as ourselves and I thought this was a great link!

To describe how countries and geographical regions are interconnected and interdependent.

Year 5 have been fantastic today! The above objective is a very difficult concept to grasp and understand, even for adults, but the children gave it a good go and came up with some fantastic ideas! We learnt that being geographically interconnected is where people are connected to different parts of the world because of their actions or choices, for example, what they choose to eat, where they choose to travel etc. and that geographical interdependence is when countries rely on each other for the manufacturing or organisation of goods or materials that we need, such as cars, clothes, food products etc. The children soon realised that a lot of the products they use day in and day out are not locally sourced and are actually grown, made or come from lots of different places around our world.

The children had a fun Burn2Learn activity where they had to find different foods that were around the school – they then had to come back to the ICT suite and using their Computing skills using the search engine safely to find out where this food was produced or grown. Some of the foods the children explored included coconuts, satsumas, cocoa beans, lemons, grapes, rice, wheat and much more! What the children found out was that all of the foods we take for granted, and some foods that the children thought were grown in England, are produced and grown from countries that are far away. The children learned the key words ‘import’ and ‘export’ to describe how products and goods are transported around the world. 




This half term, we are using our shading skills and knowledge of different blackness and hardness of pencils to create life-like and realistic drawings. We will develop our skills of creating shadows and reflections and will build up these skills to draw the eye of a refugee. We will explore what a refugee might see and will use our art skills to present this creatively and artistically.


In PE, the children have been developing their gymnastics skills. They have worked on a gymnastics circuits of exploring jumps including straddle jumps, tuck jumps and straight jumps, rolls such as pencil/straight rolls, or forward and backward rolls and other ways of using their body in gymnastics. The children have also been working on leading their own warm ups which is a skill that they are continuing to develop in Y5.


Year 5 have been developing their Dance skills and have been choreographing their own dances. They have used “ASDR” to help them choreograph an effective dance. This stands for Action – what move are they going to perform? Space – where are they standing/what space are they using? Down stage/upstage/centre stage? Dynamics – how is the actions being performed? Slowly? Quickly? and finally, Relationships – is everyone dancing together? (Unison) Is everyone dancing one after the other? (Canon).

Myself and Mr Cooper were very impressed with all of the groups as they all managed to choreograph a dance with 4 counts of 8 – as this is how we count the beats in the music. Well done Year 5!

Control & Accuracy in Throwing

Year 5 have been developing their control and accuracy in throwing. They started with a quick warm up to get their hearts racing and their blood pumping around their body. Year 5 then explored different types of throws which Mr Cooper demonstrated with one of our pupils. We explored underarm throws, chest passes, overarm throws, bounce passes and many more. The children discussed their stance they need to have when getting ready to catch. It is all about keeping your eye on the ball and being ready to catch it! Year 5 developed their skill of throwing and catching in pairs and then continued to develop this skill through a game of dodge-ball with a range of skills and rules to remember! To link to our Anti-Bullying 0 b

Accuracy and Control – Cricket

Year 5 explored bowling, batting and fielding today playing cricket. They explored first without bats to be able to explore the role of a back stop, a fielder, a bowler and a batter and this skill was then developed to include using a cricket bat (or a tennis racket to make it a little easier for some children). The children worked using great team work and even said to me at the end of the lesson that they felt their skills had developed because they found using a cricket bat quite difficult! Well done Year 5!


Anti-Bullying Fortnight: Choose Respect!

We kicked off our Anti-Bullying fortnight with a fantastic assembly from the School Council members that really gave us the message loud and clear – when everyone chooses respect, the world is a much better place! We thought about what not being respectful looks like and how respect is all around us – at our sports teams, clubs, at home, in our school and even on the television – for example, during the Olympics we see lots of respect when athletes help others who are hurt/injured. We also listened to “Respect” by Aretha Franklin – a great song to start a Monday morning! Year 5 would like to say a huge thank you to the School Council along with Mrs Holmes and Mrs Reddiex who have put so much time and effort into organising a fantastic 2 weeks for us!

Bucket Filling

We have had our first Bucket Filling lesson to complement our Anti-Bullying: Choose Respect fortnight! We started by reading the story “Have you filled a bucket today?” by Carol McCloud. To make this extra special, we went to the library to listen to the story and we thought lots about how the people in the story were different and similar, what actions looked like bucket filling and what actions looked like bucket dipping.

Back in class, we discussed what bucket filling and what bucket dipping looked like using a range of statements. We then, as a class, put the bucket filling actions into our new “Bucket Filling Bucket” and the bucket dipping actions in the dustbin. This was a great way to explore even the most simplest actions and words can really make someone else’s buckets full!

The next part of our Bucketfilling lesson was actually filling our own buckets. Everyone in class wrote their name on their own bucket and then, slowly and one by one, every single person wrote something in every person’s bucket to fill it up. By the end of this activity, every single person’s buckets were completely full and overflowing with positive and kinds comments from all of their peers. Once everyone had written something in every single person’s bucket, the children had the opportunity to digest their full buckets and read all of the kind and positive comments they received from their class.

“I liked this because even the people you don’t play with or speak to every day had something nice to say about you. It was really nice reading them.” – Millie

“It was so nice knowing that that’s what everyone in my class thinks of me.” – William

We are all unique and special!

To show that we are all unique and special – everyone wore odd socks today to show that everyone is different! We designed our own socks in class to share our likes, hobbies and favourite foods, colours, tv programmes, films – anything that we especially loved! Every single sock was completely different and this just showed how different everyone is! We are all special and unique in our own way and should remember that! Differences are to be celebrated! Here is a selection of some of the children’s socks.

Safer Internet Day

Tuesday 5th February 2019 marks Safer Internet Day. At school, we have had lots of activities to help us to understand the importance of being safe on the internet.

We started our activities by thinking about what ‘consent’ and ‘permission’ means. The children had lots of ideas and essentially knew that it was when you told somebody they could do something or have something. All of the children linked their understanding of permission and consent to school trips where their parents have to sign a consent slip to give their child permission to travel on the school mini bus for example. We then explored a range of questions about how we use the internet and how we behave online. The children came up with lots of ideas and were really engaged in the discussion.

We all talked about what we would wish for if we had “one wish for the internet”. Every child said that they wished the internet was safer. We then moved on to talking about how actually, being safe on the internet is dependent on how you use it.

We also learnt about age restrictions and why these are important. The children came up with lots of their own ideas: such as, some things on the internet are not meant for children to see, you might hear rude language. These were just some examples of the children’s ideas which was absolutely correct. We explored how the children use the internet and how they can continue to stay safe on the internet. Thank you to Mrs Waterhouse for finding such great resources to support us with our learning and understanding of Safer Internet Day!

Year 5 used drama to explore ‘consent’ and ‘permission’. Some of the drama pieces included exploring what happens when someone shares something online without asking you first, some groups explored cyber bullying and what to do in this situation and finally, some groups also created drama pieces that showed what to do if you were in a situation online where you hadn’t given consent or permission for something that had been shared: tell a trusted adult.

No Pens Day: Dyslexia Awareness

To mark No Pens Day, Year 5 had lots of fun activities to raise awareness of Dyslexia. We linked this to respecting everyone – no matter what! We had a discussion in class about how our classroom was dyslexia friendly and thought about how we could further improve our dyslexia friendly classroom. We had lots of different activities that gave the children an insight into what it might feel like to be dyslexic. One of the activities was trying to read a passage that was really difficult to decipher and decode. There was a key that the children had to use to figure out what the passage said – e.g. the word berechuqes translated to parachutes (b – pronounced p, e – pronounced a, q pronounced t) and the children had to use the key to find out what the word/passage said. The passages were also printed out in plain white paper with black text and on a coloured background which is a dyslexia friendly strategy used across school. All children said that they found it easier to read the passage on the paper with the coloured background because they could focus on the words better. The children really developed their understanding of what it it like to have dyslexia – as much as they could. They really enjoyed no pens day!

Restorative Practice Launch

To mark the beginning of the second week of our “Anti-Bullying: Choose Respect” fortnight, Mrs Holmes led our restorative practice launch assembly. We are adopting a restorative approach in school which will eventually encourage and allow our children to resolve their own conflicts and prevent further conflicts in their friendships.

Back in class, the children used drama to explore the 4 Restorative Questions that the children will use when resolving their own conflicts. Here are the four questions we explored:

The children created dramas that included fictional/made up conflicts/arguments that we would resolve using the 4 questions above. Year 5 loved being able to explore this through drama and hopefully this will give them the tools now to use this if they ever needed in their own lives. 


Year 5 have also been learning about stereotypes in PSHE and how these can affect our opinions and views of other people and other groups of people. We have explored a range of stereotypes and ways to avoid stereotypes. This included watching a range of TV adverts and analysing them – we thought what product is being advertised? Who is the advert aimed at? How do you know? What stereotype is being shown? For example, an AutoTrader advert showed a Dad and his son washing their car before taking a picture of it to post to sell – the children asked why it wasn’t a woman doing it and why the child had to be a son. They decided the stereotype here is that all men and boys like cars and that looking after cars is a man’s job.

We also explored a range of statements and tried to match them up to people. E.g. “I like basketball.” “I am good at Maths.” “I am an engineer.” “I have a criminal record.” It was really interesting to see what the children came up with and who they linked the statements to. What was really interesting was that no group had the same set of pictures/statements matching! The children are now continuing to develop their understanding of stereotypes and are thinking of lots of different ones even they, themselves, have experienced!








Year 5 have been using Inkscape to explore Graphics. They’re really enjoying their Computing lessons with Mrs Waterhouse.



Year 5 have been learning how to play the xylophone and have been developing their musical knowledge and understanding of key terms too. Recently, they have been exploring a simple musical scale called a pentatonic scale using the xylophones. They have been able to create, learn and play different tunes that use the pentatonic scale such as Jingle Bells at Christmas time, Happy Birthday and they have also been creating their own tunes too. Year 5 have been learning how to play in a group (ensemble) and how to play on their own (solo) and with a partner (duet) – this all takes skill and practise because playing with others means you have to be really aware of being on time and not going too quickly (tempo).

Young Voices

A large group of Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6 pupils attended the Young Voices Concert in Sheffield last week – and what a blast we had!! We had so much fun and loved every second! The children behaved fantastically and really did our school proud performing in such a large choir. There were over 5,000 children singing in the choir together! I know that the staff and children were also very happy with the surprise entrance of Tony Hadley – GOLD! Although, this is all the children knew Tony for! Mrs Doran and Mrs Frost even got to meet Tony Hadley! We had such fun and I know that all the parents and other family members that attended the concert had great fun too! Thank you to the children for making that experience so fun! Here are some pictures from the day and the night of the concert!

Spring Term 2 2019

Welcome back to school. I hope you had a restful and happy February half term. Our topic this half term is “The Environment“. We have got so much going on across the whole curriculum that fits in really nicely with this so I thought this was a great topic to focus on! We have a special visit this half from “Energy Heroes” who will be working with us to become even more energy efficient – this will all contribute to our caring for God’s world and working towards our Live Simply Award. Our class text will be “The Secret Garden” which will link with an exciting performance we have coming into school to mark World Book Day Week. 

Please keep checking our web page to see all the exciting things we get up to!

RE: Reconciliation

This half term, our topic in RE is all around the Sacrament of Reconciliation. We will learn about the concept of sin and that when we sin, we hurt ourselves and others and damage our relationship with God. We will begin to understand that God loves and forgives us if we are truly sorry and learn that God heals our friendship with Him and others through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. We will learn how we can prepare ourselves to receive this Sacrament and learn what happens during the Sacrament of Reconciliation.


We have been exploring what consequences our actions can have on others and how making the wrong choice can lead to those consequences. We have thought about what sin is and linked this back to our work in Autumn 1 when we studied the Creation Story and discovered ‘Original Sin’ from Adam and Eve. We have also thought about what it means to be truly sorry for our sins and have begun to think about how to make up for things that we have done wrong.

We spent some time reflecting on a wrong choice we had made in the prayer garden. For this, we picked up a small, dirty stone. We considered our wrong choice as the stone and when we rubbed the stone on our hands, it left dirt on them. I reminded the children that all wrong choice and sins can have lasting effects, just like the stone leaves dirt on our hands. We talked about how we could get rid of the dirt from our hands and the children suggested washing them. I asked them if this reminded them of anything and they came up with “Wash away my sins” in our Masses. We linked this to the Islam faith when Muslims take a pilgrim to throw pebbles at the Mecca. The children really enjoyed doing this and it was a really active and physical away to literally ‘get rid’ of our sins.

St Joseph’s Feast Day

To mark the special feast day of St Joseph, our school saint, we had a very special collective worship in class together. We thought about how Joseph trusted in God so much and how even through difficult times he always looked to God for guidance. We thought about how through Lent, we might be finding it a little bit difficult to keep going with our Lenten Promise but that we always should look to God for guidance. The children said their own prayers to Joseph in their hearts and out loud if they wished. We had a really special time together to reflect and pray to St Joseph. We are so thankful to have such an inspirational school saint.



Living in Leeds Week

We had a very busy week during our Living in Leeds Week. We had many lessons linked to our curriculum surrounding Living in Leeds including RE, Art and Geography. 

In RE, the children learnt about different religions that can be found in Leeds and we used our Maths skills to interpret some statistics. We had a really fast paced, exciting Burn2Learn activity where we had to write what we thought about each statistic. I then shared with the children that these statistics were linked to religion in Leeds. The children straight away felt like they might know more about what the statistics would tell them. We had lots of fun trying to guess which statistic matched which religion and the children were really surprised!

English – The Secret Garden

This half term, we will focus our descriptive writing around the fantastic book “The Secret Garden”. This will link nicely to our World Book Day event and performance that we have got coming up too!

Our Working Wall

We have started our half term of English by revising sentence structures to ensure that we are always using a range of sentence structures in our writing and also thinking about the impact this has on the reader. The children enjoyed a Burn2Learn activity where they had to run to the bucket to pick out a sentence, run back to their group and decide whether that sentence was a simple, compound or complex sentence. The group with the most correctly placed sentences at the end won!

The Secret Garden Performance

The whole school were very fortunate to watch a performance of “The Secret Garden”. An adaptation of the novel written by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It was absolutely fantastic and the children enjoyed it from start to finish! We most definitely will enjoy using this as a writing stimulus, as well as reading the book in class during Guided Reading. 

We have since used the Secret Garden as a stimulus for our writing and have begun by drawing our own ‘secret’ garden. We have explored figurative language and have talked about the use of personification in Frances H-B’s novel and how this helps to create a vivid image of the garden and the living things within it. The children then used the iPads to research different types of flowers, trees, bushes, birds, insects etc. to include in their writing. We talked about describing a garden and what we have in all of our different gardens at home and we found that sometimes we have similar plants, trees etc. but not all gardens are the same so we need to specific in our descriptions in order to paint a vivid picture for our reader. 

Recommending Readers

An important skill in Year 5 is to be able to recommend books to others with clear reasons as to why someone else would enjoy reading the book. Year 5 enjoyed working in table groups to recommend their books to their peers and the groups then chose the book they all most wanted to read – they did this by voting and the person/book with the most votes would then go on to the next round. We then had a group of children/books that had all been chosen as the books their groups wanted to read so these children had to then recommend their book to the whole class! They had to summarise the plot/story line without giving anything away, explain why someone else might enjoy it, describe the theme and another book that their book is similar to. They were so brilliant at it and since I have had lots of children tell me that they have read the books that their peers recommended! Well done Year 5!




This half term, we will revise the written methods for subtraction and multiplication and will the continue to learn about fractions and decimals. 

Energy Heroes

We have had a really exciting visit from Energy Heroes who visited to talk to the whole school about being more energy efficient but to also work with Year 5 in order for all children to actually become Energy Heroes. We had a fantastic assembly from Energy Heroes that explored the importance of caring for God’s World as we only have one world. The assembly covered lots of topics such as fossil fuels and natural gases such as wind turbines, solar energy and energy from waves (sea). We had lots of helpers throughout the assembly to help demonstrate lots of things (such as the gas, carbon dioxide, that currently is creating a toxic blanket around the world).

Year 5 then had a really exciting Maths lesson with the team from Energy Heroes. We practised the skill of percentages and fractions whilst also learning about energy used in the UK (from energy created by transport, factories, homes etc.) to energy used within homes and exploring what used the most energy. We had great fun and learnt so much about energy usage!

We then had a team of our very own Energy Heroes go on an energy walk with the team around the school. This was to evaluate how energy efficient the school is and how we can improve. The children learnt so much and came back with so many ideas about how we can improve and how we can become more energy efficient. The group of 6 Energy Heroes have decided to meet weekly to discuss what they are going to do to help the whole school to become Energy Heroes!

Science – Living Things and Their Habitats

This half term, we will be studying the living things that are all around us within our immediate environment and also around the rest of the world. We will study life cycles of different kinds of living things, such as plants, mammals, birds, amphibians and insects. We will consider what is similar or different about these life cycles too. We will explore a chosen animal’s habitat and make links with Geography to consider what makes this a perfect place for that animal to live. Finally, we will be exploring the parts and functions of a plant in depth to ensure that we have a secure understanding of all living things in our world.

To identify and explain the function of the parts of a flower.

In Science, we enjoyed a Burn2Learn activity where the children had to find the words (parts of the flower) that were hidden around the school grounds, in the playground, on the field, in the woodland area. They had to find all 10 words and then they came back to class to explore what they were. Some children knew the parts of the flower but others had never heard of the words stigma or filament. This was a great way to introduce the children to new vocabulary in our Science topic! Plus, we also were able to enjoy the beautiful, sunny February weather!

Science Week

As part of our Science Week, Year 3 and Year 5 had the very exciting task of preparing, creating and putting on a Science Fair for the rest of the school. They did an absolutely superb job and I was so incredibly amazed with every single Science Fair stall! Not one group did the same thing and they were all just as creative and educational as each other. I definitely couldn’t have come up with such good ideas! We had lemon volcanoes, glowing water, lava lamps, “solid or liquid?” slime, separating mixtures, sound games, solar panels to charge up devices, optical illusions, “guess the bone”, and a battery conductor buzzer game! WOW! is all I can say!

Check out this fantastic video of the children creating a ‘freeze frame’ effect of their Science Fair stalls in action!

Year 5’s Science Fair!

The whole school visited the Science Fair and it was a huge success! Every single class loved it and commented on how ‘cool’ and ‘exciting’ each stall was. Not to mention, all children definitely came away with some new knowledge (as did some of the teachers and teaching assistants I think)! Thank you to all of our Year 3 and Year 5 pupils and a huge thank you to anyone that supported our children at home in preparing and creating their fantastic Science Stalls! What a huge success!

Nature Walk

As part of our Science Week linked to Journeys and our topic of “Living Things”, Year 5 really enjoyed a nature walk on Friday afternoon. They first had to plan their walk and think about where they were going to go and then, as a class, we predicted what living things we thought we might see. This included animals, insects, flowers, plants, trees etc. We then got going on our nature walk. We explored the playground, the school field, the woodland area and the sports field! We found so much! The children really enjoyed themselves and this has really helped us to think about animals’ habitats and if we see a particular thing living in a particular area, what else might we see around there too?

We had so much fun! The children especially loved feeling like very important scientists with their pens and their clipboards! It’s the simple things in life!

Geography – The Environment

This half term, we will studying North and South America and consider how the environments differ when comparing continents, countries and cities. We will begin by locating all of the countries in these continents as well as their human and physical features. We will also consider the effectiveness of different geographical representations that we use to find out about the rest of the world and decide which ones we prefer.

The children have been using their computing skills to research the human and physical features of North and South America. They all created a two way table to present their findings. 

The children then used this knowledge to consider how the physical features of a location affect the human activity, for example, if a desert is lived in, the quality of life is going to be very different to that of a rainforest. The children also considered the benefits of certain physical features, for example, living near a lake can provide a water source for drinking, bathing and for travel.



Art & Design

The children used their art and design skills to create Mothers’ Day cards to give to someone special in their lives. They created a fantastic 3D effect using lots of love hearts cut out – the final product was a 3D flower!


Dance Workshop: The Rainforest and its Animals

Year 5 really enjoyed their dance workshop today. This was a perfect kick start to our Dance unit in PE and was a great link to our Science and Geography topic. We learnt all about the 4 layers of the rainforest and where some rainforests are found. For example, the Amazon Rainforest in South America. We also learnt about animals’ whose habitat is the rainforest!

The children began exploring how specific animals from the rainforest would move and how they could use this as a dance move. We focused on a snake (for the undergrowth), a treefrog (understorey), a monkey (canopy) and a parrot (emergent layer). This also was used to introduce the concept of levels in dance to the children. When creating or performing any dance, it is always much more interesting when there are a variety of levels incorporated – ground levels (on the floor), low, medium and high. 

The children came up with a variety of words to describe how the animals moved and then had a few others things to think about – this included the pathway and direction of their dance, the way the children were positioned e.g. altogether in a line, in a circle, and how large/small the movements were.

The children had lots of time to explore their ideas for each animal and then worked in groups to create and perform a 16 count piece – a motif. They were absolutely brilliant and I was mostly impressed by the fantastic team work I saw from each and every group! I can’t wait to continue with our Dance unit and see what else the children can create!

Below is a selection of videos of some of the children’s dances! Check them out as I am sure you will be just as impressed as I was and still am!

Group 1’s Dance

Group 2’s Dance

Group 3’s Dance

“Cheer Dance” – Cheer Leading Taster Session

Today, Year 5 thoroughly enjoyed their taster session with Nicola from Leeds Rhinos. They enjoyed a speedy, heart raising warm up and then learnt a range of motions (arm actions), jumps and balances. These were gymnastic skill based and the children showed great skills! Some of them were tricky so the children really surprised me! All of these actions, jumps and balances were arranged into a dance like sequence that even involved canon (one after another). The outcome was fantastic, especially with the pom poms included! Check out the video below to see the full routine in action and the rest of the pictures of the children in action. Thank you to Nicola from Leeds Rhinos for a fantastic taster session!

Year 5’s Cheer Dance Routine

Rounders – Initial Skills

The children have been introduced to rounders and have begun to learn the rules, techniques and strategies of the game. They have learnt that every game needs two teams (the batting and fielding teams). A batter, a bowler and fielders are the main parts of the team and that there are ‘posts’ within the game. The children just explored the batting, bowling and fielding aspect of the game before learning the rules of rounders!

Judo Taster Session

This morning, we had Glynn (Wee Man) to deliver a taster session of Judo for Year 5. The children had so much fun and loved every second of this fantastic taster! They learnt a range of Judo actions, moves and skills and also played lots of fun games that were developing their techniques to be able to perform the judo moves well. The children showed great teamwork and support of one another and they really threw themselves into it (quite literally, as a lot of time was spent on the mats)! Thank you to Glynn! 

Control and Coordination – Tennis

Year 5 have been working on their control and their coordination through the very popular sports – tennis. They first had a very quick, blood pump, heartbeat raising warm up – which our pupils are leading themselves now. The children then had to work on balancing a ball on their tennis racket. This involved bouncing the ball up and down on the tennis racket and, for those that could, twisting the racket back and forth whilst bouncing the ball too. The skill then progressed to trying to put other people off whilst still maintaining their bounce of the ball (this took great concentration and skill)! Well done Year 5!

Design & Technology

To understand the importance of the correct storage and handling of ingredients.

This half term, our learning was focused on living a healthy lifestyle and how our eating and how we prepare food can contribute to living a healthy lifestyle. We explored how to store food properly in the fridge and the children learnt why it was important to store raw meat on the bottom shelf and why, once you open most foods, it is important to keep it in a sealed bag or wrapped in cling film to keep it fresh but to also not contaminate other food items in the fridge.  we also talked about how all fridges are designed differently so it might be that the fruit and vegetable drawer is at the bottom of the fridge or some fridges may have specific drawers for raw meat. The children were really fascinated and loved talking about what they had in their fridges!

To plan, create and review a fruit salad.

We then took our learning to the next step and thought about creating a healthy fruit salad. The children had to design their fruit salad – considering the fruits they would select and why they would select these. They also had to consider how they would present their fruit salad, what cutting skills would they use to make their fruit salad look ‘aesthetically pleasing’ and would they use any specific, ‘fancy’ skills – such as flowering a strawberry? 

Once the children had designed their fruit salad, they had chance to choose their ingredients and start making it. The children had chance to use a sharp knife and they had to think about how they were going to keep themselves safe whilst using it. By the end of the lesson, every child said they felt like they had improved their skills of cutting and chopping and some children said that they’d never actually used a chopping knife before.

The children were really happy with their final result…here is a selection of some of our pupils with their fruit salads.

….and the best part? They got to eat their creation too! Well done Year 5!

Easter Themed – To measure accurately and calculate ratios of ingredients to scale up or down from a recipe.

To link to the up and coming Easter holidays, the children created some Easter themed rice krispie cakes. There were many skills involved, including measuring, assembling, using a microwave safely, stirring the mixture, measuring the mixture into bun cases etc. The most important skill that was involved, however, was calculating ratios of ingredients. The children were given a recipe that would create a set number of rice krispie cakes – they needed to make a certain amount too. They had to use the information given to them in the recipe to calculate how much of each ingredient they would need to make the rice krispie cakes for different amounts of people. This involved a range of Maths skills – including division, addition, and multiplication. The children were excellent and managed to calculate how many ingredients they would need to make enough for their group!




NSPCC Assembly

NSPCC came and delivered an assembly to the whole of KS2 as part of a programme that is being delivered to many schools around the country. They talked about the worries that children might have and used a worry sack as a way of showing this in a visual and physical way. Each worry that a child might have, e.g. being bullied, getting lost, falling out with a friend, forgetting your homework, seeing your mum/dad/carers argue, arguing or falling out with a sibling, falling over in the playground and hurting yourself – and many more, acted as a large brick that was inside the worry sack. We then talked about how to get those worries out of the sack and this was by telling a trusted adult. Each time a worry was talked about, it was taken out of the worry sack and therefore weigh less on the person’s shoulders.

The children then learnt about the different types of abuse in a really child friendly way – this covered: neglect, physical abuse, emotional abuse and sexual abuse. 

The children learnt how Childline is a service that is always available to all children – that it is free, it doesn’t show up on the phone bill and that someone is always there 24/7 – even Christmas Day! We then learnt a ‘finger dance’ to help them remember the number for Childline – 0800 1111 

The resounding message that the children heard today was that they all have the right to speak out and stay safe. If anything ever worries them or if they are upset that they can always talk to a trusted adult who will always be there to help! Thank you to NSPCC for delivering our assembly with some really important messages in such a child friendly way!

NSPCC Workshop

Year 5 had a specific workshop in their class that explored the issues we had covered in the assembly in more detail. The children explored consent and when certain scenarios are and are not ok. For example, keeping a secret. The children said that if it was a nice secret, like a surprise, and that the secret would end when the surprise was revealed then this would be ok but if someone was asked to keep a secret about their friend being bullied, for example, this would not be ok as that friend wouldn’t be safe and wouldn’t be happy. We talked about a ‘gut feeling’ and that when something doesn’t feel right it’s because it usually isn’t. The children were so engaged and the NSPCC volunteers commented on how willing the children were to share their ideas and participate. Well done Year 5 and thank you again to NSPCC!




What is the internet?

A tricky question to answer! Don’t you think? When Mrs Waterhouse and I asked the children what the internet was they came up with all sorts of ideas: Google, social media, games, emails etc. It was actually R’dli who explained that they are just services we use but the internet is the actual thing that allows us to use those services. We used the metaphor of a letter being posted: the letter is a virtual email we want to send, when posting a letter – we post in to a postbox, just like when we hit the ‘Send’ button on our email. The postman collects the letters from the postbox and takes them to the ‘sorting office’ where they are then distributed again to wherever they are addressed to go. The address includes a postcode – this tells the postman where the letter is to be delivered to. Every laptop/internet user has something called an IP address and this is similar to a postcode – it tells the internet where we want that email to go. It goes to a data centre and then travels up to the satellite in space through the telephone wires and stands we see all around and eventually goes through the router in someone’s house and arrives in their email inbox. This also happens like the speed of light! Well done Year 5 – you developed a great understanding of what the internet is!

Website Design

After developing a good understanding of what the internet was, the children were ready to be introduced to our web design topic. First, the children had to think about the content of their website and the pages within their site and they had to plan it. The children are creating their website on an animal from either North or South America (linking to our Geography and Science topic and our half term theme). They had to first research animals safely and effectively on the computers that came from North or South America and then had to think about what their pages on their website would be: some children came up with things like habitat, diet, appearance, behaviour etc. The children had time to discuss their ideas in groups and time to write their ideas down and then were given time to work independently whilst researching where they then filled in a planning template to guide them when they create their websites. They had some time to research their animal but this has now been set as a homework task ready for our next computing lesson when the children work on the very beginning of creating their website. 


Year 5 have been exploring ‘Film Music’ and have been listening to lots of sound effects that are used in films all the time. They have had chance to describe the musical instruments and the structure of the music that they hear within these sound effects. Using their analysis of the different sound effects, they have then moved on to creating their own Film Music using a specific notation.

Modern Foreign Languages – German

Year 5 are learning German in Modern Foreign Languages and are really enjoying it so far! They have started by learning some basic greetings and have had a chance to use this new language they have learnt in a conversational situation. The children not only have learnt the words orally but have had to try to read them and write them. They are going to continue to work on greetings and will eventually develop these skills further so they are able to have a conversation with another person using their new learning.

The children showed real confidence when using their new learning and some had the chance to speak using the new greetings in front of the class, whilst the rest of the class had to make sure they were pronouncing every word correctly and answering correctly!

Days of the Week

Year 5 have been learning the days of the week in German and have had lots of fun reciting, writing and putting the words into sentences. The children are absolutely loving the language and are finding new and fun ways to help them remember the vocabulary and new words that Mrs Lowe teaches them. 

The children used their whiteboards to have a go at writing the words down and then had a super fast quiz to test them on their new learning. They then applied their learning in a writing task and challenged each other in testing from English to German or German to English.




Summer Term 1 2019

I hope you all had a very rested 2 week break and are enjoying the preparations to the upcoming Easter Weekend. Our first week back will be focusing on Holy Week – we will be looking at the Stations of the Cross and reminding ourselves of why Easter is such a special and important time for us and for the Church.

Our topic this half term is The Mayan Civilisation. All of our learning will be focused around this and I am very much looking forward to delve into this with the children. I have been to Mexico and went on a tour of one of the famous Mayan cities so I am excited to share my own experiences with the class. Please keep checking out our web page to see all of the exciting things we get up to!

RE: Life in the Risen Lord

Our topic this half term is very fitting and is all about the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We will begin our RE topic by recapping the Stations of the Cross and reminding ourselves why Holy Week is such a special time for Christians. We will then recap the story of the resurrection of Jesus Christ and will consider how Mary Magdalene felt when she discovered the empty tomb. 

Stations of the Cross

The children used freeze frames to study the Stations of the Cross – each group had to perform their freeze frame and the rest of the class had to guess which station of the cross they had chosen. We talked about the significance of the Stations of the Cross and why each Catholic Church has them mounted on a wall or as a specific feature. We linked back to Holy Week as these were the events that led up to the death of Jesus Christ on Good Friday. The children were so well informed of the Stations of the Cross – I was very impressed with their knowledge! They really enjoyed this freeze frame activity!

Resurrection Story

We have been exploring the story of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We learnt about the story of Jesus rising again from the viewpoint of Mary Magdalene and how the disciples came to finding out that Jesus was still alive. We explored how Mary Magdalene may have felt at the time and the events that followed after she discovered the tomb was empty. We stepped into the shoes of Mary Magdalene and wrote a diary entry to explore the events that followed and the feelings of Mary Magdalene and the possible feelings of the disciples. This is something we are going to explore even further during the half term.

Live Simply

We are very proud to announce that we have been accredited the Live Simply Award and we are the first school in the Diocese of Leeds to gain the accreditation! Year 5 have been working so hard since the beginning of the Year 5 on ‘living more simply’. This included our big project last half term linking to Energy Heroes. Our new Planet Protectors have been working hard to ensure that our whole class are living simply. As part of this, we now have a watering can in our classroom allowing us to reuse the water we would otherwise waste. For example, when filling our water bottles up, instead of pouring the old water down the sink, or leaving the tap to run waiting for it to go cold, we pour the water in the watering can first or let the water run into our bottle and pour it into the watering can whilst we wait for the water to get cold.

We have since had a full watering can so our Planet Protectors reused this water to water some of our plants in our outdoor area! A fantastic idea from all of St Joseph’s Planet Protectors! Thank you!


Modal Verbs

The children used role play to explore the use of modal verbs. They pretended they had been invited to a party and that they had to persuade their parents to let them go. The children worked in their talk partners or in small groups and had to try and come up with as many scenarios/conversations as possible whereby they could use a range of modal verbs. The results were brilliant and the children had great fun coming up with the different conversations!

Developing a character, setting and a plot

In English, we are using our Mayan topic as a stimulus to write a story – developing a character, setting and plot. We learnt in History that archaeologists discovered Mayan cities that had been abandoned during the time of 900AD. Historians are still unsure as to why these cities were abandoned and throughout history, many theories have been suggested: such as an earthquake, volcano eruption, alien abduction, food shortage or war. The children had to create their own theory or buy into one of the theories to include in their story. We used role play to explore why the Ancient Mayan cities could have been abandoned.

The children then chose to use storyboards to plan their story where they could draw a picture and include some written information to guide them. I asked the children to then choose one box from their plan to write about as in Year 5, writing a whole story would take a long time! Most of the children chose the action part – where the disaster happens (the reason the city is abandoned)!

We talked about ‘Exploding the Moment’ and how we can add detail to our writing through description. As always, we are trying to vary our sentence structures as much as possible and use a range of sentence openers so the words ‘THE’ and ‘I’ were limited and some words were banned as sentence openers! The children then used self and peer-assessment to find evidence of a character, setting, plot and sentence openers which really put their writing to the test! Their ideas and theories on why the Mayan cities were abandoned really were so creative! Well done Year 5!


Volume, Tone and Intonation: using our voices

A skill in reading is varying the volume, tone and intonation in our voices as this can really enhance the way we read or the impression of a character, atmosphere etc that we present whilst reading. We have also started to think about persuading in our English lessons and thought about the use of our voice for persuading someone too. In reading, we will be presenting a speech on the importance of protecting rainforests. Before we even begin to think about this, we had to be clear on how to use our voices. The children had analysed the persuasive features of a letter in English so then used the same letter to explore their voice. We talked about the meaning of volume, tone and intonation:

  • Volume: how quiet/loud you use your voice (e.g. whisper, shout, scream, talk at a normal level)
  • Tone: the way you say something, this might be attitude in your voice (we like to call this the character in your voice)
  • Intonation: the differing pitches in your voice (e.g. usually when you ask a question your voice goes up at the end).

We worked in groups then to practise varying the volume, tone and intonation of our voices by reading the persuasive letter that we had previously analysed. This was really useful because there were some specific words we had already highlighted as we had said that these were particularly persuasive so the children could then add emphasis on these words whilst speaking. They did really well and when presenting back to the class, every child was able to notice how they were using their voice.



Year 5 have been working so hard in Maths and I can already see such great progress! We are continuing to work on fractions, decimals and percentages. The children have developed their understanding of decimals – including the place value of decimals, rounding decimals to the nearest whole number and to 1 decimal place. We have also worked on finding fractions of amounts and finding equivalent fractions, decimals and percentages.

The children enjoyed a fast-paced, competitive Burn2Learn activity in Maths where they had to match decimals, percentages or fractions to their equivalent on the sheet they started with. They had to run to the other side of the playground and pick up a fraction/decimal/percentage and then come back to their groups and work out if it matched any (and explain why) or if it didn’t match any (and also explain why)!

Science – Forces & Magnets

To understand that magnets have two poles and predict what happens when you put opposite poles and same poles together.

Year 5 really enjoyed revising magnets this week. We recapped that both ends of a magnet are called poles and that they are called North and South poles. The children then predicted what would happen if we put the same coloured ends together and what would happen if we put opposite ends together. The children then used the magnets to see what happened and wrote up a short explanation in their books. Who knew that magnets could bring such joy in a classroom – even for me!! We learnt that the forces evident in magnets are a push and a pull. The pushing force was a repulsion between the similar poles and the pulling force was an attraction between opposite poles.

To understand the effects of gravity.

We have moved on to learning about other forces that exist in our world and have learned about Isaac Newton – the founder and discoverer of GRAVITY! The children instantly were excited about this because they really wanted to just drop loads of things and see what happened – obviously we knew they would all fall to the floor (because of the force of gravity pulling all objects towards the centre of the Earth). We learnt that Isaac Newton discovered gravity because an apple fell on his head whilst he was sat under a tree. He was confused why the apple had fallen down and not up – the children all found this amusing – but Isaac Newton did not know about such things as gravity so of course was confused. This led to him discovering the force and making the realisation that everything is pulled towards the centre of the Earth.

We discussed how gravity was measured and the children learnt that all forces are measured in Newtons (because of Isaac Newton) and that we use a force meter or a ‘Newton Meter’ to measure forces. We discussed the difference between ‘mass’ and ‘weight’ and how ‘mass’ actually refers to the amount of matter that an object is made from (what we usually refer to as weight and usually in grams, kilograms, stone, pounds etc.) and the ‘weight’ is the amount of force acting on that object (Newtons).

The children then wondered if the mass changed the force of gravity and we thought of ways we could test this. Some children thought we could conduct a test where we change the object (where the objects have different masses), dropping the objects from the same height and timing how long it takes for them to reach the ground, or measuring their weight (force of gravity) using a Newton meter. We will be putting this hypothesis to the test next week when the children plan and conduct their own investigation to test their own hypothesis!

To understand the effects of air resistance.

We began to explore air resistance by dropping a piece of paper on the floor. I asked the children to predict how the paper would fall to the floor and all the children said it would almost flop side to side before it reached the ground. I asked the children why they thought this was. One child said because of the wind. However, we were inside and the windows were closed so there could be no wind – this made the the children think even more! One child then said because of the actual air and this led us on to talk about air resistance! To introduce the children to the idea of air resistance even more, we went outside and used running to show the children the how air resistance acts against a force. For example, when dropping a piece of paper, air resistance acts against gravity. 

First, the children had to run back and forth across the playground just in their normal uniform.

Then, the children had to put a coat/cardigan on and open it up to run with.

The children immediately noticed running was harder and realised it was because the coat was taking up more space which meant they had to push through more air. This then opened up the discussion of surface area and how this might impact the effects air resistance has on an object – yet another hypothesis to put to the test! We really do have some budding scientists in Year 5!

History & Geography – The Mayan Civilisation


The Mayan Civilisation was located in what we now know as South America. Most of the cities were around and amongst tropical rainforests due to the area being close to the equator. In Geography, we have been learning about the structure of the rainforest and the importance of rainforests for human life and for our world. Last half term, we really enjoyed a dance workshop as part of our environment topic which touched on rainforests so we thought back to our learning and the dances we created and how this linked to rainforests.

We enjoyed using outdoor learning to explore the structure of the rainforest. First, we had to match the 4 key words to the 4 key structures of the rainforests: emergent, canopy, understory and forest floor.

We then created actions to match each layer of the rainforest and enjoyed a Burn2Learn activity to memorise the structure. We also studied the trees around us to consider how a rainforest’s structure might be similar/differ to that of the trees around us. E.g. in a rainforest, there are lots of trees that are close together with very thick leaves and branches that touch to allow the animals that live in the canopy to jump from tree to tree. The children really enjoyed their learning and hopefully will remember the structure of the rainforest with the actions we learnt! We are going to develop our understanding of rainforests even more and will be writing a persuasive text in English on why it is important to protect the rainforest, as well as presenting persuasive speeches in our reading lessons!





This half term in PE, Year 5 will be learning the rules of rounders fully and will develop their skills to play a full game. Some skills that will be involved in rounders will be batting, fielding, bowling with accuracy and developing tactics within a team for the game. We will also be looking at being respectful and motivating team members to one another – being a ‘good sport’! 

We enjoyed a very wet, rainy PE lesson this week. The children were introduced to some of the initial rules such as even if you don’t hit the ball, you still run; if you hit the ball behind you, you can only run to first base; if you get to second base, it’s half a rounder; if you are at a base, you can run as soon as the bowler releases the ball. The children played fantastically and showed a good understanding of a lot of rules! Even if we were absolutely drenched when it came to the end of the PE lesson! Well done Year 5!


We are also developing our athletic skills on a Wednesday in our PE lessons with myself and Mr Cooper from PE Partner. The children explored their speed, agility and coordination in some fast-paced drills, including dodging in and out of cones, jumping over larger cones, and quick steps over hoops. We then developed this by focusing on jumping over tall cones – an initial development in the skill leading up to jumping hurdles. We also used the fast-paced drills to create an agility course which we think will help us so much in our preparation for Junior Warrior towards the end of June! A much warmer, drier and sunnier PE lesson this week!






After a very hectic half term in Spring 2, we have continued our web design topic this half term and the children have finally completed their websites! Year 5 have learnt how to insert an image – they did this through either saving the image and inserting or copying and pasting the image on to their page. They then also learnt how to insert a hyperlink to their website which would direct the user to another web page for information on their topic. For example, a website about a panda might link you to the WWF website to give you more information on the protection of pandas.

Here are some screenshots of some of our Y5 pupils’ work – I can really see some of our children going into web design in the future as they are all so fantastic!




In Music this half term, we are learning how to create an ostinato. An ostinato is a repeated pattern of notes. In pop music, it is referred to as a ‘riff‘ or a ‘loop‘ – but all three words mean the same thing.

Over this half term, the children will be working on creating an ostinato through a range of instruments and through using their own body percussion and vocals too. Please continue to check this section of our web page to see what the children get up to in music!


Modern Foreign Languages – German

Counting to 10

Year 5 enjoyed a fun Burn2Learn activity to help them learn their numbers to 10 in German. They also learnt a song to help them remember the German words for each number. I keep testing them and they have definitely mastered counting to 10 in German – I wonder if we can get to 20 next! 


Photos of the children in action to follow…



Summer Term 2 2019

Welcome back to school! I hope you all had a very rested half term. Mrs Frost and I cannot believe that we are already into the last half term before the summer holidays! We have some very exciting things planned for this half term so please continue to check our class web page to see what we get up to!

This half term, our main focus is all around the Anglo-Saxons and Vikings and our topic is called “Let the Battle Commence!” We will be using our topic across the curriculum in History, Geography, Computing, English, DT, Science, Maths and much more! 


Race for Life

It was with great pride to hold St Joseph’s first very own Race for Life event! This event could not have happened without the fantastic organisation and support from Mrs Towse and our sponsors – so a huge thank you to everyone involved in arranging such a wonderful event. Cancer Research is very important to all of us here at St Joseph’s and we are very proud to have raised so much money for such an important cause. The amount is still to be counted when all sponsorship monies are collected next Friday.

The children were absolutely fantastic! Not only their determination and resilience whilst running the race for life but also their sportsmanship and the way they cheered and support the rest of the school too! Mrs Frost and I were so proud of Year 5 and I know that it was a great day had by all!

RE: Other Faiths

This half term, we will explore other faiths in our world and will focus on Judaism. We will look at the different symbols and meanings of other faiths and we will also look at the symbols of Judaism itself. We will think about how Judaism is similar yet different to our own faith and reflect on what we can learn from it too.


We will initially be using the Leeds Children’s Mayor project as a focus for our writing. Year 5 will be writing a persuasive letter as to why they should become the next Leeds Children’s Mayor using all of their writing skills they have developed throughout the year. They will then learn to summarise longer passages into a shorter amount of text and will summarise their letter into a 200 word manifesto, ready to be submitted if they wish to apply to be the next Leeds Children’s Mayor.


Year 5 have really enjoyed Maths this week. We kicked off our first day back at school with some exciting Burn2Learn games to learn our square numbers – this also included learning a catchy song! The children worked really hard and were so tired and out of breath by the end of the lesson. They had fun and now know all the square numbers off by heart! Well done Year 5!


This half term in Science, we will continue to learn all about Forces!


History & Geography – Let the Battle Commence!

Using historical vocabulary to communicate events

Year 5 incorporated Maths skills into their History lesson today as they ordered the events that took place in the Anglo-Saxon and Viking age. They had to first order the events and then describe the range of dates that they saw. For example, how many centuries did this time period span over? (8 centuries = 800 years). They then had to space out their events accurately using scaling. To do this, they had to work out the difference between the events and use their addition and subtraction skills and then decide if their events were spaced our accurately enough. Some children had a timeline given to them whereas some children used ribbon and had to decide completely independently on their own spacing. It was great to see the children using their Maths skills in a History lesson.


Circus Workshop

Year 5 enjoyed a circus workshop during our Fun, Food & Fitness Week where they had the opportunity to experience some of the key circus skills. They had a go at juggling, walking on stilts, plate spinning, diablos and much more! The children had a fantastic time and we would like to thank Miss Mac for organising such a fun workshop. Pictures speak a thousand words so have a look at Year 5 in action!


Scooter Training

Year 5 enjoyed their Scooter Training session during our Fun, Food & Fitness Week. They were able to draw on their skills previously developed in a scooter training session at the start of the year and developed their knowledge of road safety awareness whilst riding a scooter around the roads. Thank you to Harriet and Maria, our scooter trainers, who made our training session fun and informative!

Computing – Makey Makey Project

Using Graphic Design to create a Viking Shield

The first step of our Makey Makey project was to create a Viking shield using graphics. The children could choose between using Inkscape (a specific Graphics program) or PowerPoint where they can use a range of Graphics skills too. They had to create their shield so that they could then attach foil to it in order to allow the Makey Makey computing system to work. Their designs were so artistic and this was all created through their graphics skills! Here is a random selection of some of Year 5’s Viking Shields.




Useful Links


Websites are a fantastic way for children to continue to learn at home. Below are some excellent websites that are linked to our learning.