Welcome to Badgers Class!
Please find our Spring 1 Curriculum Newsletter below!
Tuesday 6th February 2018
An enormous thank you to everybody that joined us for our Spring Term Learning Together this afternoon! It was so wonderful to see so many shared reading-related smiles over the course of the afternoon - and to hear such brilliant reading and discussion about reading!
Your continued support reading aloud with your children is greatly appreciated - remember that three signatures, included Guided Reading homework, by each Thursday will help us on our way to winning Reading Stars and a new book, chosen by the children, for our class bookshelf! If you would like any clarification or have any further questions about supporting your child at home after today's session, please don't hesitate to come and ask!
Our whole-class performance of the poem 'Carousel', by Rebecca Kai Dotlich:
(I have now added copies of two of Rebecca's poetry books to our class bookshelf - please do feel free to borrow these if you'd like to enjoy reading more of her poetry!)
Wednesday 31st January 2018
What a delight it was to walk round the corner earlier to find a group of Year 4 children laughing and smiling as they enjoyed sharing picturebooks by one of my absolute favourite author/illustrators, Mini Grey, together! They seemed to have found almost her entire works on the shelves in the Book Burrow, including four copies of her latest picturebook, Bad Bunnies' Magic Show, which will be one of the texts at the heart of our Magical Mayhem topic later in the year. More on that after Easter ...
Our focus in Maths over the past fortnight has been decimals, developing our understanding of tenths and hundredths, and we enjoyed applying what we have learnt to an investigation context today. Using 'skipping rope spirals', we had to work collaboratively in groups to order a set of decimals between 0 and 1, giving careful consideration to their relative positions and explaining our thinking. What fabulous reasoning from Year 4 today!
This was based on an NRICH investigation, 'Spiralling Decimals', which can be found at the link below - we just brought it off the page! Perhaps the children can explain to you how they decided where along the spiral to place the decimal numbers.
Monday 15th January 2018
Charlotte brought in a sketchbook from home to show us today and my goodness, she's been busy! Inspired by our artwork inspired by Kandinsky's Circles, Charlotte has painted a whole series of circles of her own in her sketchbook in all different colours! We love them, Charlotte!
Friday 12th January 2018
This week in English, we have been considering our impressions of the Funfair Moon repair team, Jinks and O'Hare, and analysing the techniques that Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre have used to develop their characters and shape our impressions in this way. We have had such fun creating funfair repair duos for our own funfairs and applied what we have learnt about characterisation to write character descriptions. From two sets of funfair repair twins, Ice & Cream and Cotton & Candy, to Chirp & Squawk the funfair repair parrots, to Harry and Hermione, funfair repair duo of the secret Hogwarts rollercoaster, we have astounded Miss Williams with our creativity!
Thursday 11th January 2018
The theme for this half term's Hall displays is enrichment. Inspired by Kandinsky's Circles, we have replicated some of the techniques that he used to create our own 'Circles' artwork. We discussed how we might use shape and colour to achieve the effect of funfair lights, creating our own palettes of colours, and as we painted, we listened to funfair music to help us capture the mood. We have had lots of comments about how striking the finished display looks - super effort, Badgers!
Surrounding the display is some information about enrichment linked to our current topic, 'Hold on Tight!'. As a class, we are creating a sketchbook capturing our journey with Jinks & O'Hare Funfair Repair to send to Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre once we have completed our challenges - we are looking forward to showing them how their book has inspired our learning.
Friday 5th January 2018
Scream if you want to go faster! Today, as part of our 'Hold on Tight!' topic, we worked collaboratively as a class to make a rollercoaster across the ceiling of the classroom! We used cuboid nets without the top faces to make the carriages and then took photographs imagining that we really were screaming from the peaks of a rollercoaster to put in them! Finally, we measured as accurately as we could to mark the tracks on strips of card to make the rollercoaster track. With our guidance, Miss Williams and Mrs. French put the rollercoaster up - we wanted the tightest turns and the steepest slopes possible!
Our next Share Afternoon is straight after school on Tuesday - do come and admire our efforts!
Thursday 4th January 2017
Happy New Year! I hope you all had a fabulous Christmas - the children have been excited to see their friends and eager to share all their Christmas news this week!
Our topic for this half term is called 'Hold on Tight!'. Our new whole-class text, Jinks and O'Hare Funfair Repair by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre, will be at the heart of this topic and inspire our learning across the curriculum. Lots of the children thoroughly enjoyed reading and recommending the other three books by this brilliant author-illustrator duo last term so I have no doubts that Jinks and O'Hare have a lot of fun in store for us!
Sarah McIntyre has a brilliant website and blog, which has lots of information and activities linked to Jinks and O'Hare Funfair Repair - clicking on the front cover will take you straight there! We are extremely excited that Sarah has sent us our very own challenge! There will be a display up in the Hall showcasing some of our initial work from next week - please do ask your children to show you!
As we work towards completing Sarah's challenge, our learning will include:
What a ride we have ahead of us this half term! Watch this space for updates!
Thursday 7th December 2017
I am still feeling absolutely blown away by the incredible creativity and enthusiasm that the children have shown in English over the past fortnight and the stunning writing that this resulted in today!
At the beginning of last week, we enjoyed reading The Pea and the Princess, a fabulous fractured fairy tale that is narrated by the Pea himself! We used a 'Likes, Dislikes, Puzzles, Patterns' grid to frame what quickly became a brilliantly lively discussion about the book and also created a 'story path' as a class, which we walked down as we retold the story.
We have applied what we have learnt to tell the story of Kevin the Carrot's quest to meet Father Christmas from his perspective. Surprisingly, none of us had written a story narrated by a carrot before! We have explored what the world might be like through the eyes of something so much smaller than us - how things that seem small to us must seem so much larger and scarier. To help us, we all laid at the foot of the Christmas tree in the Hall with our eyes at the same level as the (googly!) eyes of our very own Kevin the Carrot and had great fun playing with language to capture his view of it!
The lights look like a million suns beaming down on me. - Jasmine
The Christmas tree is like a magnificent tower leading to heaven. - Libby
The baubles look like shining planets hovering above me. - Sam W
Inch by inch, I scrambled and trampolined off the branches. When I reached a point just over half way, I rested on a giant pillow of tinsel. - Ewan
Amazingly, I found myself climbing inch by inch through a galaxy of Christmas decorations. - Abigail
With a clearer view of the world through Kevin the Carrot's eyes, we considered what it might look and feel like at different moments in his quest in the advert and about how we could use language to capture this. What would it feel like having roast potatoes rolling after you if you're only three inches tall? Would ice cubes seem like icebergs? What about the flames dancing on a Christmas pudding - how big would they seem? And how could we paint a picture of the world from this perspective for our reader?
After some brilliant discussion and experimenting with language, we settled down to retell the story under the watchful (googly!) eyes of 35 Kevin the Carrots in Big Write today! Choosing our Writing Goal Scorers of the Week has been one of my biggest challenges of this week - what stunning effort, enthusiasm, imagination and writing, Badgers!
Next week, we will be choosing our own inanimate objects to bring alive and send on a Christmas quest, which we will also be telling from their perspective. I've already heard discussions about a 'Chris the Cross Candy Cane' - I can't wait to see what he gets up to!