What a start to the year! Mrs Mellen and Mrs Couchman were so upset not to welcome all our super Seals back after Christmas; at the start of a new term, we really looked forward to seeing you all again and hearing all your news. It seems a long time ago now, but we hope you had a lovely Christmas and New Year despite the restrictions.
Luckily we are all getting used to the new online way of learning, although we know it is totally different from learning face to face and collaboratively from each other. You are all so good at sharing your own and listening to each other's ideas, that is something we cannot replace with our learning portal, Purple Mash.
You have all been working incredibly hard with your parents, despite distractions at home and your adult’s caring and work commitments. You have shown great resilience in just 'having a go' and not giving up. The Maths videos and worksheets seem to be going well, and you did great learning with multiplication and now division. Keep on practising number facts like times tables and number bonds.
In English, I have been very impressed with the effort many of you have made in handwriting; much neater with letters formed correctly, nice tall ascenders and descenders hanging below the line. Everyone enjoyed “The Firework Maker's Daughter,” and then the series of non-fiction text comprehensions. Remember to use evidence from the text, answer in full sentences and read between the lines.
You have also been doing wonderful water posters in Geography, and in RE you have written some very thoughtful reflections on Martin Luther King Jr and other inspiring people. You are still showing us your many talents in Art and PE. We have still had our “Pupil of the Day,” which is awarded when people go above and beyond their usual effort and achievement. It has been lovely to see you all and share some news in our Zoom meetings, which will now continue through the term.
Here are a few moments from the learning you have shared with us; keep up all the great work, Super Seals!
Please login to your Purple Mash account each day to find your Home Learning tasks from now on. Each day there will be new activities for you to complete and hand in. Contact your Class Teacher if you need help with any logins for Purple Mash, Mathletics or Reading Eggs.
A big 'Hello!' to everybody from Mrs Mellen and Mrs Couchman. We are missing you all since Seals went into isolation on Thursday 3rd December, but we know that you are safe, working at home and being good, sensible Super Seals in the last couple of weeks before the Christmas holidays.
Before we left, you all did an amazing job of writing a non-fiction explanation text for an alien about Christmas all over the world. You should all be very proud of how much and how well you can write now compared to when you first came into Year 4; give yourself a pat on the back and shine up your medal!
Those fascinating facts you discovered about what children put out for Father Christmas (shoes, stockings) and who helps him (a witch, a saint, elves) and how he travels around (reindeer, sleigh, horseback) and what he likes to eat (mince pies, nuts and oranges, milk, carrots) have found their way into your writing in Purple Mash. Remember to do as much as you can, written in paragraphs - not just one line sentences! Don't forget punctuation and 2A sentences as well.
We are so pleased with how you are using Purple Mash and watching the videos which I, Mrs Couchman and other teachers are putting up there for you. Do as many as possible, and remember there is no need to return the video to me. Parents please follow the suggested links for PE on the class page.
As we may not all get to see the all-important Christmas panto at school until the New Year, look out for many other free seasonal entertainments online such as:
Maybe you could find and watch the wonderful traditional Christmas ballet 'The Nutcracker' about a little girl, Clara, who receives a nutcracker toy soldier who comes to life... Here's one of the whole performance https://uk.video.search.yahoo.com/search/video?fr=mcafee&p=Nutcracker+ballet#id=3&vid=54c20bce0ce2dc4fea5e7d7346a29fdb&action=click
Remember you can contact me by email and I will try to help however I can. Stay safe and be happy learning Seals!
Another two weeks of learning has flown by for the Seals; quite often the children are so immersed that they are surprised when 3.00pm comes and it is time to go home.
In Maths, we have moved on to 'Length and Perimeter'. We have been learning how to use equivalent units, how to add and subtract length of objects and also distance. At home it might be good to measure heights of children and adults, and work out the differences between them in metres and centimetres.
In English, we completed our unit on poems after having thoroughly enjoyed reading and writing a variety of poems in different forms. We decided to start thinking about Christmas with our new text - after all it is just one month away and many people have their trees up at home. The story, which you can watch with the children on Youtube, is called Coming Home. It is about a plucky little robin and his epic journey home.
We have learnt all about robins - ask the Seals for top facts - and also drawn and coloured a beautiful bird's eye view of his flight. We still enjoy spotting different things in the natural world on our walks and the children were fascinated by the 'mackerel' sky one day.
As PE takes place with the coaches outside in the MUGA, weather permitting, please ensure your child has a thermal vest or t-shirt on underneath their uniform on Thursday as it can be a little nippy! Children should also have their winter PE kits in school, which could consist of tracksuit bottoms and a hoodie of any colour. A beanie hat is also a good idea as we lose most of our body heat through our heads.
Celebrating success is so important and we want to share the wonderful art work Year 4 did for their display, with biographical writing about Keith Haring and images of his famous jelly baby people breakdancing and having fun. Another fun art activity was designing odd socks to remind ourselves of Anti-Bullying week.
There have also been several new ways for individual success to be recognised. In addition to the well-known Star of the Week, we now have Pupil of the Day in Seals class. This is awarded for someone who impresses the adults with their learning and social behaviour in and out of class. An award which is very popular with the children. In the playground, the Midday Meals Supervisors now award positive behaviour with a Lunchtime Award. Finally, in Seals class, several pairs of pupils are finding out how to be a learning mentor by being a Seals Buddy. This aspect of collaborative learning has been incredibly successful for both parties and is something we will develop in the future.
Well done all the Seals for your continued enthusiasm and hard work - we are really proud of you! Also a huge thank you again to all parents and carers for supporting your learning with reading at home and exploring Mathletics, Reading Eggs and Purple Mash. As always, we are here to help and if there is anything you think we can do, please let Mrs Couchman or myself know. Have a happy two weeks.
We hope you enjoy our pictures of the frost we found on the playground.
After a relaxing half term, Seals were soon raring to go. They must have missed school! They love writing about their weekends and holidays and seem to have done lots of exciting things over the break, so thank you to all the adults for keeping them interested and active.
We have been reading and writing poetry in English and the children have really enjoyed experimenting with form and language. They understand that a poem paints a picture and expresses emotion and have composed some very powerful poems themselves. They have written a Haiku, which is a Japanese form with strict rules, and a free verse poem, which has none.
In History we are developing our knowledge of Ancient Greece by investigating their myths, looking at stories like Medusa, Icarus, Pandora and others. There are many films on these themes, which are often helpful to a broader understanding.
In Science we are learning about Animals including Humans, focusing on how animals digest food. The children can say - and even spell - some quite tricky words like oesophagus! They are very interested in what happens to food when it leaves the fork and enters our mouths, so please talk to them about it.
We marked Remembrance Day by reading some war poems and wrote a poem about what a soldier would put in a Magic Box, and also observed the two minute silence at 11 am. You would have been proud of how seriously the Seals took this solemn moment.
In Computing we are continuing our work on coding - writing little programs for games - and also exploring the many learning opportunities on Purple Mash. Together with Mathletics and Reading Eggs, these are very important platforms for learning outside school, and the Seals have been discovering how to access tasks and send them to me online. All the logins have been sent home, so please make sure they are all in a safe place ready for use whenever you need them.
Finally, we fit in some little mini lessons like how a spider makes a web and the children love to find them covered in dewdrops like a crystal necklace.
Stay safe and happy Seals and families!
It's nearly Halloween and the Seals can't believe how fast the term has whizzed by. In the last couple of weeks we have secured Place Value and moved onto Addition and Subtraction in Maths. The children love racing Mrs Mellen in column method calculations and are very good at it - so challenge them parents!
In English we have focused on an international heroine of courage - Harriet Tubman. The Seals can tell you her inspiring story because they have written a biography and Harriet's own story. Absolutely everyone in the class has made progress in writing and their work is very impressive. Seals are collecting new words, using the dictionary and ‘magpieing’ from their reading. Handwriting has improved and the hands don't get tired so quickly!
We celebrated Black History Month by drawing portraits and making maquettes of Harriet Tubman, and British Values Day by looking at Individual Liberty.
As it has got a bit chillier, we still do PE outside but the hardy little Seals run around to keep warm and their coach has awarded certificates for resilience (keeping going when it's tough) and great participation. Please send jogging bottoms for PE and wear a vest on cold mornings.
Last week, we ran the Race for Life and had a lesson about what we were helping and positivity, writing some beautiful Happiness poems. We have also learnt about how food affects mood and how to stop negative thoughts with positive ones.
Again lots of reading raffle tickets have been awarded and almost all Seals are continuing to impress us with homework, and some are doing extra projects like writing stories and creating artworks.
Finally, we have marked the new season with poems about Autumn and I'll just share one with you all –
A beautiful leaf
Under a tree
Trees filled with colour
Until winter comes
My spirit filled with joy
No one sad anymore!
Have a lovely Half term and don't eat too much pumpkin!
Over the last two weeks, Seals have continued their brilliant learning with work on four digit numbers in Maths and counting up to 10,000! In English, we completed a story about a dilemma set in a funfair, and made a display of our writing and colourful pictures. We are also very good at using prepositions and time and place conjunctions (but need practice on a or an).
In Science, we have carried out investigations about how sound travels by making pan pipes and cup telephones. We had an exciting lesson logging on to the new computers and found out about a website with free e-books to use at home, Oxford Owls.
The children have also received laminated cards with their Mathletics and Reading Eggs logins and both websites offer challenges for achieving fun activities at home. Reading is still going well with over 40 tickets in the raffle and we have started our Times Table Challenge.
Thank you all, parents, for continuing to support our super Seals with all their learning, we are so proud of our children and families.
The Seals have been working really hard for the last two weeks as we all get to know each other and make friends again back at school. It's been hard work but we've had fun - drawing round our bodies on the playground, trying out the new MUGA (multi use games area) and going for sound and nature walks. We've discovered Henry Moore in art and have a few budding artists in the class. Everyone has been reading at home and ten people have already had reading raffle tickets! Parents and all your adults are proud of your progress, keep it up Seal cubs!
Our two Stars of the Week were both for brilliant settling down, while our two PE stars were for great listening and following instructions, and this week, for enthusiasm. (11.09.20)
Welcome back to your new year group
Year 4 Seals!
Mrs Couchman and I were both so excited to meet all the new Y4 Seals this week, and couldn’t believe how smart and grown up they looked in bright uniform and shiny shoes, beautiful plaits and haircuts. The new Seals immediately showed us how ready they were to return to school and were eager to start learning and having fun with their friends.
This week the Seals got off to a good start with writing and illustrating booklets about themselves, doing place value number games, making a class rainbow and practising their speaking and listening skills. They also wrote their own and evaluated the school’s Golden Rules.
We are enjoying a class novel, The Firework Maker’s Daughter, and in the next few weeks will be reading and writing stories about dilemmas in English. Other exciting topics are Sound for Science, learning about how music is made and how we hear, and Ancient Greece, learning about the art and architecture, people and how they lived. And, of course, we are also finding out about seals and how they live in the harsh habitat of Antarctica.
Although the world has changed since March, the children have taken this in their stride, due to the wonderful support of all their families at home. The Seals have quickly and sensibly adapted to changes in the classroom, such as new seating, hand washing and sanitizing routines, and socially distanced seating in the dining hall.
It’s been a busy and productive week settling in and we are all looking forward to the rest of term and all the fun learning we will have together.
Thank you all, Seals and families!