20th November 2017

There seems to have been a bit of a bug going around Year 4 this week with many children off sick. We only achieved 92.2% as our weekly attendance, so please make sure you are washing hands and thinking about hygiene so we don’t keep spreading our germs! We were awarded 7 handshakes, but are getting very excited as Mrs Alford has hinted that there might be a bit of a shake-up in how we collect handshakes soon. Only the class councillor, Ruby, knows the secret, and she hasn’t told us yet!

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Whilst it has been a busy week overall, Friday was particularly busy as it was Children in Need. Thank you to everyone who donated £1 for their non-uniform day and biscuit. Please bring in the money as soon as possible if not so we can donate it to this worthy cause. It has also been Anti-Bullying week, so we spent Friday afternoon talking about a short animation called Daisy Chains. We had lots of excellent discussion about images from the story and asked lots of provoking questions. After watching the clip, we talked about what bullying is and in particular the need to be aware of cyber-bullying and how anything we share on the internet can be instantly accessed by people all over the world and can never be permanently deleted. 

I have tried especially hard this week to make sure that nobody has forgotten to take home their reading books and diaries, and look forward to giving out lots of stickers on Monday for all the reading you have been doing! 

13th November 2017

Of course, the big event for 4DE this week was the long-awaited trip to Beaumanor Hall. We had a fantastic day and once again everyone impressed with their behaviour and thought-provoking questions to ask our guides. Whilst some children found aspects of the trip a little upsetting, we all agreed that it was an amazing opportunity to see what WWII would have been like for British citizens and were reminded of how lucky we are. 

Upon arrival, we learnt about evacuation and how children were expected to be ‘seen and not heard’ – which some of us found more difficult than others! We also discovered that boys in the 1940s were expected to look after their female counterparts, and a particular shout-out goes to Leo who was very reliable in remembering to hold the door for ladies to enter a room first! We were taken into a real bomb shelter in the basement, and experienced the terrifying sounds, sights and smells that people would have suffered through. 

After lunch, we went to a school room and, in addition to completing postcards and ID cards, had to prepare a shopping list to cook Mrs Goulder a delicious 1940s meal. We took turns to visit the shop and spend our ration vouchers, and learnt about which foods were rationed and why. 

Our final activity of the day was to walk over to the original Listening Station used during the war, which was cleverly hidden inside some worker’s cottages. In here, we got to listen to and decode messages. We learnt about how hard this job would have been in real life – 6 hours of sitting still listening to crackling radio signals with not toilet break!

I am sure that everyone would agree that this was a unique experience and one we are all glad to have taken part in (although many of us would not like another trip to the bomb-shelter!) It has greatly enhanced our learning and we look forward to sharing more with you during our World War II Experience Day, coming up in December. Thank you to everyone for taking part in this trip, and well done again on your excellent behaviour.

Back in school, we were slightly below our usual standard for attendance and so failed to receive an award. We did very well with a total of 22 handshakes, but as the winning class had a whopping 40 handshakes we missed out on Class of the Week too. We had a fantastic first lesson back on Friday, and all impressed Mrs Goulder with our attempts to write quotes and captions using AFOREST  to include in a persuasive leaflet, which we will be creating over the next few weeks.

6th November 2017

We have had a great, but very busy, first week back in 4DE. We may have only received  6 handshakes, but are back on form with our attendance, hitting 99.1% this week – another certificate earned for the cake fund! 

As the children have shown a great interest in anything spooky and gruesome, our reading this week focused on the poem, The Bogeyman. We completed lots of activities focusing on identifying and defining unknown words, using expression in our reading, and thinking about impact words. We also studied poetry in English, and each created our own Blackout poem. These were created by taking pages from books and painting out words so that we were left with just 1 sentence. Everyone really enjoyed this, and it was a great chance to practice our fine motor skills as we had to use our paintbrushes very carefully so that we only painted over the words we didn’t want! Check out some of the examples below.

In Maths, we began to look at column subtraction that involves exchanging. Whilst some people found this easier than others, it has been lovely to see how everyone supports each other in their learning. We will be continuing this topic next week, with children being grouped according to their needs so that everyone is pushed to the best of their abilities.

We have been continuing to complete our Blitz artwork in Topic time, and are very much looking forward to our trip on Thursday. Don’t forget to dress up!

It was great to see so many parents at parent’s evening, and thank you to all who attended. If anyone ever wants to meet for a chat, please either call or send a note in your child’s organiser and I will be happy to arrange a convenient time. As discussed with those who attended, we are now completing our spellings using the online program, Purple Mash. All children have access to this site and in addition to practising their spellings, there are a range of really engaging and beneficial maths games, as well as hundreds of other activities to investigate.

23rd October 2017

We have finally reached half term and 4DE definitely deserve their break! We have worked very hard this week on planning and writing descriptions of an illustration from the WWII story, Rose Blanche. We found it quite difficult to remember to use all of the different features we have been learning about (eg, adjectives, adverbs, expanded noun phrases, fronted adverbials…), but had a very good try.  However, when we compared our writing to our attempts a few weeks ago it was quite clear just how much progress everyone has made in just a few weeks – well done! 

Everyone has also been working really hard to memorise and perform our class poem, Little Red Riding Hood, by Roald Dahl. Working in groups, we learnt our parts and practiced using tone, expression and body language to enhance the poem. We later watched back videos to review our performances, and voted on our favourite to be uploaded to the class website. We chose Izzy, Alannah and Ebony’s performance – we particularly enjoyed their use of humour, as well as their clear, expressive voices. Well done girls!

After all our hard work, we enjoyed some time creating artwork based on the blitz. We blended different colours of paint to create a dramatic background, and will complete our pictures with a silhouette of the London skyline when we return after half term.

Whilst we are very pleased to have a week-long break, we were very sad to say goodbye to Phoebe who is leaving us to go to Jamaica. As a leaving gift, we wrote some personal messages to her in a copy of Letters from the Lighthouse (our class reader), so she can remember us and not miss out on the ending of the story! We have also exchanged email addresses and look forward to hearing from Phoebe and her family when they settle in. We would also quite like to organise a class holiday to visit her!

I hope you all have a great week off – but don’t forgot to keep up with your reading! I will be introducing some new incentives next term to keep up our levels of motivation, as regular reading is essential in improving our success in ALL areas of learning!