Autumn 2020 2nd half

Memory Box

As we continued our theme of memory box the year 4 children continue to embrace all aspects of the curriculum and, as in previous years, they have found our studies of life in World War I fascinating. In both English and history lessons, the pupils have become immersed in the day to day lives of soldiers from 1914 to 1918 and appreciated the sacrifices people made going off to fight and on the home front.

Reading War Horse has had a very positive impact. Michael Morpurgo describes life in the first world war whilst using Joey, the much loved family horse as a focus, we have found it a sensitive way to learn about the positive and negative side of war. The children have used freeze frames from War Horse to help their writing and even adapted this to a soundscape which they found very moving. Shortly before Remembrance Day, we looked at war poetry from famous war poets. The resulting poems which the children wrote were extremely powerful.

Our history lessons have included facts about the advancement of warfare, life in the trenches, the use of animals as well as leaning about local people from Ampthill who were part of The Great War. This has brought cultural capital to the children’s learning. As teachers we also have really appreciated the work from the learning logs which has arrived in the classrooms, each piece shows a considerable amount of effort.

It was great to start the term with two walks around Ampthill with Alister from Sustrans. Starlings and Woodpeckers learnt so much when using pollution meters with surprising results. As these meters were linked to computers, recordings were able to be analysed in the classroom afterwards. As you know the second lockdown prevented Kingfishers from completing this walk but it is still hoped they will be able to do this when the situation allows.

Electricity has been studied in science since November and the first time the pupils create an electrical circuit they are told to enquire and investigate as opposed to being told how to assemble the wires, bulbs and cells. The grin on their faces when their bulb lights up is a joy to behold. We combined our knowledge of circuits with design technology and the children have designed and built their own torches. Whilst we did have limited time to do this we know many pupils returned home and continued to improve their master pieces by adding switches or decorations. Well done year 4.

We continue to be truly amazed by the impact of Times Table Rock Stars on the current Year 4. The children are now participating in several sections of the software and “Studio” allows them to progress up the Hall of Fame, on the wall in each classroom. The competition is fierce and of course each of the year 4 teachers are looking for their class to be top of the leader board! Only a little competitive!

Next term we will travel back further in time with our learning and we look forward to seeing everyone in January.