Robins - Year 4
Welcome to Year 4!
We are a class of 25 pupils, collectively known as The Robins.
We have two teachers:
Mrs P. Davies who teaches us on Monday and Tuesday, and Mrs J. Routledge who teaches us on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Also working in our class are Mrs Sparkes & Mr Penn who are our class teaching assistants. They work with individuals as well as small groups.
Tremendous Team Building Day
Our final outing with the Robins of 2021-22 was a full day of team building activities at Carey Camp in Wareham. The heat wave had arrived but we were able to spend the day in the shade of the forest and enjoy all the timetabled events.
The children enjoyed exploring the tunnels, where they completed trails and hid objects for their partners to find. The 'Spider's Web' was excellent for encouraging communication skills, especially when the children were blind-folded. The blind-folds were in use again on the paired blind-fold course. The children were able to explore lots of the site whilst taking part in the Orienteering. Another favourite was the archery where the children listened carefully to all the safety information and were extremely successful when aiming at the target.
The whole day flew past with lots of smiles as you will see from the photographs.
A great way to end the term!
International Outdoor Classroom Learning Day
Outdoor Classroom Day
Outdoor Classroom Day is a global movement to make time outdoors part of every child’s day. On two days of action each year, teachers take children outdoors to play and learn. The first Outdoor Classroom Day this year was on Thursday 19 May 2022 and to help the schools of Swanage get involved, the Dorset Coast Forum together with the Environment Agency hosted sessions at Swanage seafront highlighting the areas that are at flood risk and how we currently protect the town from coastal flooding. As part of this scheme the Robin's Class spent a fabulous, sunny morning at Swanage Beach, where we met Sara, from the Dorset Coast Forum, and Diamond, from the Environment Agency. We met at Albert Gardens and looked at the view of Old Harry Rocks and the different types of cliff face we could see from this spot. We walked along past the Mowlem Theatre looking at the sea wall and the blocks which are used to prevent flooding during the Winter Months. On the seafront we found the painted drains and discussed the things that are being put in place to prevent flooding in Swanage. We walked to the pier and looked at the wooden groynes and concrete that have been used to slow down the coastal erosion. We enjoyed our outdoor learning session and look forward to our next opportunity to take part. Sara and Diamond were impressed with our behaviour and the questions we asked and answered.
World Book Day 2022
We begin each morning by learning our weekly spellings, using a range of methods from the Pyramid Technique to a Timed Challenge. We are currently following the Babcock spelling scheme, which includes the Year 4 National Curriculum spelling list but also provides opportunities for looking at a range of spelling skills such as the use of the apostrophe, suffixes and prefixes.
Following our daily spellings we have a 20 minute Guided Reading session. This year we will read the following texts:
- The Dinosaur Garden
- Cliff Hanger
- Flat Stanley
- The Fastest Boy in the World
Each week there is an opportunity for individual pupils to read to the class, but we also read sections aloud as a whole class. It is wonderful to listen to the pupils reading with increased confidence and improved expression. Our weekly lessons involve questioning of the text, word and meaning tasks and an activity based around the chapter of the week, for example writing as one of the characters or predicting what might happen next within the story.
Pupils are taught Numeracy every morning and each lesson begins with a 5-a-day set of questions. This is an opportunity for the children to look back at previously taught aspects of their numeracy as the curriculum covers many areas. During the Autumn and Spring Term the pupils learn the four operations, number facts and the concept of place value. Pupils use efficient written and mental methods to solve a range of problems including simple fractions and decimal place value. One of the key elements in Year 4 is the knowledge of the times tables. By the end of the year pupils are expected to have memorised their times tables up to and including the 12 times table. The children are set a times table to learn for their weekly test. When they have a secure knowledge of a times table they progress to the next one. The test will take place on Thursday and you will be informed of your child's progress via marvellous Me. Our class have access to TT Rockstars to assist with their learning. Each child will be given their own personal login details and password.
Year 4 Multiplication Tables Check
In Year 4 we are expecting all children to complete the Multiplication Tables Check. This is a Government assessment which will take place in the Summer Term. All children are expected to have learnt all of their times tables (up to X 12) by the end of Year 4. To help children with this we will be providing the children with additional practice materials on TT Rockstars (see above).
We read the following texts in our Literacy lessons:
Street Child by Berlie Doherty
Oliver & the Seawigs by Philip Reeve
Stig of the Dump by Clive King
Pupils study the techniques used by these authors and the ideas from the stories are used to generate the pupils own writing of: narratives, explanation texts, play scripts, letters, biographies, diaries & newspaper reports. Pupils begin by studying examples of the text type they will be producing. They create word banks, study the features used such as chronological order, use of the first person and emotive language if they are writing a diary. Pupils plan their writing, produce a first draft and finally re-draft their piece of work. The pupil's re-drafted work is displayed and shared with our Head of School. As we update this page we will be including examples of the pupils writing.
We also read, write and perform poetry as part of our literacy curriculum. So far this year we have studied Jabberwocky by Lewis Carol & read a number of poems by Roger McGough from his selection in Poetry Pie.
The main focus of Year 4 Science is to develop the children’s scientific understanding of the world around them. Our Science lessons encourage the children to ask questions about scientific concepts, and answer those questions through scientific enquiries such as investigations and experiments.
Our Topics this year include:
Autumn 1 – Living things and their habitats (1)
Autumn 2 – Electricity
Spring 1 – Sound
Spring 2 – States of Matter
Summer 1 – Animals, including humans
Summer 2 – Living things and their habitats (2)
In our RE lessons, we embrace the opportunity to explore and look in depth at different world religions, whilst also exploring the Christian faith and its teachings. Our lessons include research, recording of ideas, and also discussion and the sharing of views and opinions, as we explore together.
Our Topics this year include:
Autumn 1 – Buddhism
The Buddha’s Teachings – Is it possible for everyone to be happy?
Autumn 2 – Christianity
People of God – What is it like to follow God?
Spring 1 – Buddhism
The 8-fold path – Can the Buddha’s teachings make the word a better place?
Spring 2 – Christianity
Gospel – What kind of world did Jesus want?
Summer 1 – Christianity
Kingdom of God – When Jesus left, what was the impact of the Pentecost?
Summer 2 – Judaism
Rites of passage and good works – What is the best way for a Jew to show commitment to God?
Jabberwocky Discussion and Performance
Our weekly topic lessons cover the following areas:
Autumn: The Victorians & A Victorian Christmas
Spring: Rivers & The Romans
Summer: Ancient Greece & Natural Disasters
Where ever possible we include 'hands on' experiences for the pupils to bring these topics to life. During our Victorian work we looked at a range of primary sources, working out what each item could have been used for and the modern equivalent today for example a toasting fork and toaster. The children also made replicas of Victorian Christmas decorations. These activities were designed so the pupils gained an understanding of the impact the Victorians have on our lives today. The children were astonished by how many of our Christmas traditions started in Victorian times.
This term we are planning a trip to Dorchester Museum to take part in a 'bones & metals' workshop and visit a Roman Town house. Check out this space for photos later in the term.
Dorset County Museum Trip
We launched our new humanities topic 'The Romans' with a visit to Dorset County Museum where the children participated in a 'Bones and Metals' workshop. The children became archaeologists and were able to discover 'grave goods' and use these to work out which status their replica skeleton held within Roman society. Emma and Brian (the museum staff) were both so knowledgeable and enthusiastic that the children were spellbound from the minute we arrived.
After the children had uncovered all the Roman artefacts they visited the Roman Exhibition to see if they could locate their 'finds' and learn more about Dorchester or Durnovaria as it was called by the Romans.
The class also had an opportunity to dress up as rich and poor Romans. Looking the part, the children walked to see the examples of Roman mosaics displayed in the museum.
Roman Town House
Our final activity was a visit to the Roman Town House. Here the children learnt about the layout of a rich Roman home by studying the remaining walls with Emma and reading the information boards. The opportunity to sit in a replica amphitheatre, which is just one year old, while looking at the only entire Roman Town House in Britain will hopefully be one the children will remember for many years to come.
This is new to our school curriculum and the children have risen to the challenge of speaking a new language. We have learnt how to introduce ourselves; to count; name the days of the week and months of the years and how to say colours in Spanish. We are currently learning about aspects of school life for example to name the subjects, classrooms and what is inside our pencil case.
In Year 4 we have two lessons of PE every week and also take part in a daily run. Our curriculum for each term is outlined below:
Autumn 1: Health Related Exercise & Tag Rugby
Autumn 2: Gymnastics & Football
Spring 1: Dance & Basketball
Spring 2: Outdoor Adventurous Activities & Hockey
Summer 1: Tennis & Fielding & Striking (Rounders & Cricket)
Summer 2: Athletics & Swimming
The children also have access to a wide range of clubs and take part in a number of sporting competitions and festivals. See our PE page for more details.
Cross Country Competition
PSHE is taught using a scheme called Scarf. This scheme supports our pupils social, emotional and physical well-being. There are many opportunities for discussion & role play within these lessons. We also include PSHE afternoons when National School Topics arise so far this year these have been Anti Bullying & Mental Health & Well-Being for Children.
The children will be given a personalised set of spellings to practice each week and there will be a spelling test every Monday to check the progress of the children.
The children will also be expected to learn their times tables each week and they will have a test on this every Thursday. Children can practice on TT Rockstars or Hit the Button. Each child will be given personal login and password for TT Rockstars.
English and Maths Homework will be set every Friday on IXL, and should be completed by the following Thursday. (Maths or English will be set on alternate weeks). All children will receive a personal login code and password. Any child who does not have access to the internet will be provided with a paper copy of the work set. Please have a chat to the class teacher and we will ensure this is organised for your child.
The children will also be expected to complete one piece of homework each half term based our class Topic. This usually involves a piece of research, Art or DT, and we are constantly amazed at the ideas the children have, and the work produced, often involving the whole family!
Reading is given high priority at St Mark's and all children are expected to read at home regularly. Each child is given books linked to our Reading Scheme and suited to their reading level, or, once a Free Reader, is able to choose a book from our extensive library. Each week there is the opportunity to win a book of their choice by being awarded with a Golden Ticket. In order to win a Golden Ticket, your child should read at home at least 4 times during the week, and their Reading Log should be signed by an adult. They will then be entered into the draw which takes place every Friday during Praise Assembly. Good luck!