Welcome back Class 4! I hope you have had a brilliant holiday and a relaxing break. We have another very exciting and busy term ahead!
Our topic for this term is focused around the Ancient Greeks.
In Literacy this half term, we are reading ‘Who Let the Gods Out?” by Maz Evans, the hilarious story of Elliot, a normal young boy who finds himself in a surreal situation when he meets Virgo, a Zodiac goddess on a mission. We will follow the pair on their adventure after they accidentally release Thanatos, a wicked death daemon imprisoned beneath Stonehenge, and they’ve got nowhere to turn for help but to the old Olympian gods. Our written work will be based around our class text, and we will be practicing key grammar skills and extending our vocabulary, as well as writing our own Greek myth from first person perspective, developing our understanding of characters’ thoughts, feelings and motives.
We will then move on to ‘The Rhythm of the Rain’ by Grahame Baker-Smith. With striking illustrations, this book follows the spectacular journey of a young boy’s jar of water as it races the sparkling streams, tumbling over waterfalls, rushing through rivers and bursting out into the vast open sea, travelling to a drought-ravaged village on the other side of the world. This beautiful story will help us to develop our understanding of the water cycle as part of our Science topic and lead to us writing some fantastic explanatory texts.
In Maths, we have made a superb start to the year so far. I am extremely proud of how well the children have adapted to our mastery approach to our lessons, developing their reasoning and problem solving skills and beginning to gain a much deeper understanding of key mathematical concepts. This term, we will be focusing on multiplication and division, fractions and decimals. We have now learnt all of our times tables up to 12 x 12 and will constantly be revisiting our times to become more confident with recalling our times table facts at speed. As always, your help and support at home with this is much appreciated.
In Science, we will begin the term by exploring states of matter. Through a range of exciting experiments, we will explore, observe and classify a variety of everyday materials, helping developing our understanding of the states of matter and exploring the phenomena of melting, freezing, evaporating and condensing. Linked to this, we will also investigate the water cycle with the help of our class text “The Rhythm of the Rain”. In the second half term we will have the opportunity to explore the Apollo Moon Missions in conjunction with Space Camp and British Science Week. Using a range of resources, we will undertake independent research on the missions, locate lunar landings and investigate meteorites!
History and Geography
In History this half term, we will be investigating the question “How have the Greeks shaped my world?” In order to answer this question we will find out what role the Ancient Greeks played in the development of areas such as astronomy, mathematics, medicine, democracy, sport and philosophy. We will then think carefully about the impact this has on our lives in the present. We are keen to become inquisitive historians, considering a range of primary and secondary sources to find out about the variety of ways in which the Greeks shaped our world.
In Geography, we will be investigating the question “What can we discover about Europe?’ We will be exploring the fascinating physical and human features of our continent, using satellite images, an atlas, GIS images and a variety of maps, including thematic maps to help us with our research. We will look at where the countries are located and some of the major cities, mountain ranges, rivers and weather patterns. We will also have the opportunity to draw upon our previous learning on natural resources to discover what is made, grown and mined within Europe.
We will use our computing skills to help us in our research in both history and geography.
This half term, we will continue to develop our linguistic and cultural knowledge of French through learning about our family members and how to describe them. We will use our knowledge of French phonics to help us with our pronunciation, and our understanding of bilingual dictionaries to help us extend our vocabulary. In the second half of the term, we will be focusing on our written French skills, by writing an email to a French pen pal discussing our school life. We will continue to develop our grammatical understanding of the French language through learning about pronouns and gender agreement, as well as conjugating some high-frequency verbs in the present tense.
Art and DT
In Art, we will be focusing on our printing and fabric skills. Our work will be based upon geometric Greek art, exploring its use in Greek pottery and creating our own meander. We will have a go at recreating our meander using batik, inspired by the work of Peter Goldphin, as well as printing using string and paint.
In DT, we will be using our historical knowledge to research, design and create our very own labyrinth. We will think about the use of tricks and traps and use our knowledge of mechanical systems such as pulleys and levers to create some of our very own traps in our labyrinth! We will complete the design process by evaluating our designs. We hope the minotaur won’t escape!
This term in RE we will be considering how different religions demonstrate their commitment. In the first half term, we will focus on Sikhism, thinking about how and why Baisakhi is celebrated. We will then consider the concept of Lent in Christianity, exploring the question “Why is Lent such an important period for Christians?” The children will be given the opportunity to reflect the ways in which they show commitment in their lives and special ceremonies or rituals they may have taken part in.
We are very lucky in Year 4 to continue have the opportunity to go swimming every Thursday. Please ensure your child has their swimming kit in school every Thursday to make the most of this fantastic opportunity.
Across the term we will also have the opportunity to learn dances in preparation for the Year 3/4 Performance in Spring 2. To ensure that everyone can take part in PE lessons, it is important that children have their PE kit in school, sports trainers and a water bottle.