It has been a very busy half term! We have been joined by a couple of new people in year 5! Mr Dillon-Morris is a student teacher from Edge Hill University who will be with us all term, teaching alongside Mrs Staples. Mr Dillon-Morris will be leading on a Maths and Reading group as well as leading on Computing, Geography, Science, DT and PE. This will be a team teach approach with Mrs Staples. We also have Mrs Al-Saraj joining our team. She will be teaching on a Monday, leading on arithmetic, RE, Spanish and Computing. Mrs Wilson will continue as our LSA to support all day and Mrs Taylor will continue as our intervention teacher in a morning. Mrs Lingard will join us on a Thursday afternoon to lead on some intervention work.
We are incredibly lucky to have so many amazing people in our year 5 family!
As always, any questions or queries should be directed to Mrs Staples as class teacher.
This half term we have studied two very different texts. At the start of the half term, we were enthralled by the narrative poem ‘The Highwayman.’ As this is quite an old poem, the language was difficult to understand so we used lots of practical resources to learn some of the unfamiliar vocabulary. We went on to think about each of the characters and their journeys within the poem, we particularly focussed on Bess, The Highwayman and Tim (ostler) by creating a thought, speech and heart bubble for different parts of the poem. The children sequenced the poem from the point of view of these characters, discussing how each character has a different perspective on the events.
Following this, we studied the Tim the ostler who we found to be one of the most interesting characters as the poet does not explicitly say what role Tim has in the death of Bess and The Highwayman, but we can form our own conclusions from the events that take place. For our independent write, we wrote a confession letter to the landlord from Tim. The children used some of our key vocabulary such as ‘lovelorn’ ‘unrequited love’ and ‘lugubrious.’
After this, we studied the picture book ‘Belonging’ written by Jeanie Baker. This tells the story of Tracy who grows up whilst the area is going through gentrification. We began by discussing what the word ‘belonging’ means to us and how it can mean different things to different people. We spoke about the idea that we believe we own land, but other cultures believe that we belong to the land, and we have a responsibility to it. We took an image each and tried to draw what we thought the area looked like 5 years previously and gave reasons for this. We then looked at the area and discussing the deprivation and the changes that take place over the 22 years.
We looked at how subtle changes were being made to create more greenery, we discussed the pros and cons of gentrification for an area, discussing the implications for the residents. We then focussed on Tracy’s neighbour who was leading the campaign to ‘Reclaim our Street.’ From the pictures, we saw that the community built a garden, planted trees and plants in each garden and that a lake was created. We wrote a diary as the neighbour at different points in the 22 years, using emotive language and switching tense where necessary, which was a challenge!
This half term we have been developing our arithmetic skills particularly linked to fractions. We have become more confident in finding equivalent fractions, simplifying fractions and changing improper fractions to mixed numbers and vice versa. We spent a long time perfecting these skills and embedding our understanding of fractions. Moving on from this, we learnt how to find the common denominator in order to add and subtract fractions. We have touched upon finding the lowest common denominator, but this will become part of our morning work as we become more fluent with our times tables. In the final week of the half term, we learnt how to multiply and divide fractions. Arithmetic around fractions will continue throughout the rest of the year alongside the four operations, decimals and percentages (once we have studied these next half term).
This term we are learning about Living Things and Their Habitats. For this half term, we have particularly focused on plants. We have looked at the life cycle of a plant, the parts of a plant and photosynthesis. Our key vocabulary has been ‘pollination, seed dispersal, fertilisation and photosynthesis.’ We created diagrams of the parts of the plants and the children have been fantastic at using scientific vocabulary to explain the life cycle of a plant. We used the outdoor space to imitate pollination. Some of us were flowers with lots of pollen, some were flowers that needed pollinating, and some were bees. We used post-it notes as the pollen and demonstrated the process – it really helped us to understand how pollination works. We also discussed wind pollination and how the shape of the plant is different.
We have started an investigation based around seeds and what they need to grown into plants. Our hypothesis is ‘All plants need the same requirements to grow.’ We have sowed some mustard and cress seeds and placed one set on the windowsill, one on the sink and one in the cupboard. We will use our first lesson after half term to observe what has happened and we will write up our conclusions.
From here, we compared the life cycles of mammals, amphibians, birds, and insects. We started by recalling prior knowledge of life cycles from the Very Hungry Caterpillar and then the life cycle of a frog. We looked at the life cycle of a human and the children then created the life cycle of a bird. We learnt some more key information from here, including ‘incubation’ and ‘metamorphosis.’
We will continue to learn about Living Things next half term and Mr Dillon-Morris will be leading on this alongside Mrs Staples.
We have continued with our enquiry ‘What was life like in Baghdad during in the golden age of Islam?’ We have learnt about Al-Jazari, an inventor from Baghdad who created hundreds of different ideas, and these impacted on our lives including the ‘crankshaft’ which is a key part of a car. This was the last of our ancillary questions to investigate and then we moved on to writing our explanation piece to answer the enquiry question. As this is an independent piece, it has taken more than one lesson and will be completed after the half term holiday.
Our next enquiry will be Geography based ‘Where in the world is the most valuable thing and who owns it?’ Mr Dillon-Morris will be leading on this alongside Mrs Staples.
This half term we have been focussed on Perspective, light and shading in a piece of Art. We used The Highwayman as a theme to create different pieces. We have used different mediums to create pieces such as pastels and pencil. We will be using a final lesson after half term to compare which medium we preferred and evaluate the pieces we have created.
This half term has been based on dance. We have used The Highwayman as our focus following on from our English work. We started by thinking about some of the key words used in the first verse such as ‘torrent of darkness’ ‘ghostly galleon’ and tried to use our movements to show this to a piece of music. We then thought about the characters and how they would move, their facial expressions, we showed this through partner work and mirroring movements. We used a new way to perform, where children were able to perform independently or alongside other groups which allowed the children to build confidence.
Next half term we will be looking at gymnastics and Mr Dillon-Morris will be leading on this alongside Mrs Staples.
Our unit has been ‘spreadsheets’ this half term and we have used Purple Mash to investigate how a computer spreadsheet can compute numbers and answer questions we have in minutes! We have learnt about how to input data and create an instruction linked to cells to prove or disprove hypotheses. We have also linked this to maths as we have had to navigate cells using coordinates and using coordinates to locate cells during a list of instructions.
Next half term we will be learning about databases and Mrs Al-Saraj will be teaching us.
Children’s Mental Health Week
It was Children’s Mental Health Week from 13-17th February and in year 5 we have been on a journey to learn about emotions and have had a huge push on Emotional Literacy. We always talk openly about how we are feeling and how this impacts on our actions. We use lots of tools to regulate our emotions including sensory boxes and the use of the Calm Area. As part of Children’s Mental Health Week, we watched an assembly that spoke about who we have to support us. We created support balloons which we will hang proudly in our Calm Area as a reminder that we have lots of people to turn to when we need a little extra support.
SWAT (Schools Working and Achieving Together)
This half term we have been lucky enough to take part in a project alongside other schools in our SWAT cluster. We have focussed on one of the biggest events in History – Queen Elizabeth 2nd Platinum Jubilee. Using workshops organised by Burnley Youth Theatre, the children have learnt and sung the National Anthem – all three verses! They have taken part in a drama activity depicting the coronation through freeze frames and they have created portraits of Queen Elizabeth using the grid method.
This half term the R.E. theme was Hindu Beliefs. Our key question was – How can Brahman be everywhere and in everything?
We learnt that Hindus believe in a universal soul or God called Brahman. Hindus believe that there is a part of Brahman in everyone, this is called the Atman (like the essence of someone). Atman means ‘eternal self’. It is often referred to as ‘spirit’ or ‘soul’ and indicates our true self or essence which underpins who we are. Hindus believe that Brahman takes on many forms which some Hindus worship as gods or goddesses. These gods are sent to help people find/understand the universal God (Brahman).We looked the three main Hindu deities (the tri-murti); Brahma – creator, Vishnu- preserver, Shiva – destroyer. We then matched the deity to its role using word and picture cards.
In Spring One in PSHE we have been looking at Dreams and Goals. We have investigated the value of money in our lives and how important this is in achieving what we would like to be when we grow up. We have researched our dream jobs and found out more information about what those jobs are, what you need to do in order to get those jobs and how much those jobs potentially earn. We have then looked at the dreams and goals of Mary in Kenya (one Mary in the city and one Mary in the village) and how different or similar these are from each other and ourselves.
Here are some pictures of the last exercise we did where we presented similarities and differences for the two Mary’s to the class.