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Welcome To Our New Website!
Russell Lower School

Spring 2023 2nd half

Spring 2023 2nd half

Over the last half term, the children in year 4 have been making great progress in maths. As well as all of their fantastic practise on times tables rock stars, they developed their multiplication and division skills by learning the formal written methods. We started with the expanded method for multiplication, and with sharing and partitioning and division. We also introduced the topic of area, which they will then build on in year 5 and 6 at Alameda. We have been working hard in our fractions topic – the children have so far explored unit and non-unit fractions, equivalent fractions and adding and subtracting fractions. We will continue to work on this throughout the next half term, and also learn about decimals.

 A real highlight of our English learning this term was our visit from the author, Keith Hatton. He did fantastic drama workshops with the children which inspired some amazing writing all about a gladiator fight. We then used this to write newspaper reports. We also write biographies about a famous person who has inspired us, after researching them and finding out all about their lives. We then explored Michael Rosen’s poetry and wrote our own chocolate-inspired narrative poems which were very entertaining to listen to!

 We loved learning all about Italy in our topic, Viva Roma! We located Italy on a world map, thinking about where it is in relation to the UK, and then explored its bordering countries, regions and major cities. We learnt about some of the physical geography of the country, including the two major mountain ranges, and then the human geography such as famous cities and landmarks and Italian culture. We found this very interesting and loved comparing it to life in the UK. To summarise our learning, we created short imovies in our computing lessons which were all about Italy. Following on from our Italy learning, we will be finding out all about the Romans next. We will find out about the Roman Empire; how they successfully invaded Britain, what life in Roman Britain was like and then identify major achievements of the Romans that have impacted our life today.

 Science was all about the ‘states of matter’ – solids, liquids and gases – and we carried out various experiments to explore how materials can change state, for example what the melting temperature of chocolate is. We learnt about the processes of evaporation and condensation and what happens to the particles in water and water vapour when they are heated/cooled. Our next science topic is all about sound – we can’t wait to find out more about how sound travels. In RE we found out lots about Islam and were able to compare Islamic beliefs to our own beliefs and beliefs of the other major world religions. As well as our imovies, in computing we were also able to produce fantastic fact files using Microsoft Word and Microsoft Publisher, using the internet to research.

 The children have really developed their art skills over the last half term. We began by exploring collage and evaluating various artists’ work, for example the famous artwork of Eric Carle in ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ books. We learnt all about the colour wheel, specifically complimentary colours, and then explored this further by created organic shapes on contrasting backgrounds. We pulled all of our work together by creating our own beautiful collages inspired by the fabulous work of Henri Matisse.

 We are very excited to learn all about the Romans, particularly on our trip to Verulamium. Lots of other exciting things are also going on this half term, for example our weekly swimming lessons at Flitwick Leisure Centre. The children have really impressed us with how sensible they are each week, as well as their determination and resilience in the pool. And, of course, we are all now preparing for the eagerly awaited Condover trip in April!