Welcome back to a new school year, particularly to those children who are new to Upper Key Stage 2 in Tornado Class! We hope you have all had a relaxing summer and are ready for the very busy term ahead and in some cases for your final primary school year!
Our topic this term is “Dynamic Dynasty” and we will be learning about the life culture and legacy of Ancient China, with an emphasis on the Shang Dynasty, We will begin by creating and understanding a timeline of the Shang Dynasty building on the children’s chronological understanding by looking closely at how this aligns with the same period elsewhere in the world including Britain.
In English we will be reading King of the Cloud Forests' by Michael Morpurgo. This adventurous tale will inspire the children to write their own stories. We will use a wide range of other texts, including poetry and non- fiction to reinforce structure and style. There will be a strong focus on improving the accuracy of spelling, grammar and punctuation and the quality of handwriting. Reading and understanding the complexities of different texts will be given a high priority throughout our English lessons. In Guided reading we will develop the children’s ability to read ‘between the lines’ and infer the reasons and motivations behind characters’ thoughts and actions. When children are reading at home, we would strongly recommend that you have regular conversations with your child about what they are reading and whether they are enjoying the book or not.
In Maths we will begin by looking at place value and Roman numerals, before moving onto the four operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Mental recall of all times tables up to 12x and the inverse is essential and mental maths will continue to play an important part in all of our maths lessons. Due to their importance, we ask that you help your child to practice times tables at home each day using Times Tables Rockstars.
Science and Computing: During the first part of the term we will be looking at the planets in our solar system. We will discover that a moon is a celestial body that orbits a planet. Remember if doing independent study at home, it is NOT safe to look directly at the sun, even when wearing dark glasses.
Children will discover how ideas about the solar system have developed over time, learning about the work of scientists such as Ptolemy, Alhazen and Copernicus. We will work scientifically, comparing the time of day at different places on the Earth; create models of the solar system and look at shadow clocks and sundials.
During the second part of the term we will focus on forces: friction, gears and pulleys and gravity. We will explore falling objects and ask questions about the effects of resistance. We will investigate how objects move and explore the effects of friction on movement. In this half of the term we will look at the work of Galileo Galilei and Isaac Newton and how they helped to develop the theory of gravitation. Our focus in Computing will be communication and collaboration including Internet safety.
In RE we will build on our understanding of Christianity and in Music our focus will be exploring sound sources and choral singing. The children will continue to learn French through our Language Angels programme.
Art: In the first half of the term we will learn about bronze casting and calligraphy and will explore a range of materials before creating our own piece based on the work of contemporary Chinese artists. In DT we will be exploring mechanical systems and will design, make and evaluate a product which incorporates pulleys or gears.
In Upper Key Stage 2, the children will participate in PE twice a week. It is important that your child wears the correct PE kit for school and that all items are clearly labelled. PE kit should comprise: blue t-shirt, dark blue or black shorts/skort, long socks and suitable outdoor training shoes (not plimsolls please). In addition, it would be a good idea to bring tracksuit bottoms and a warmer top for outdoor activities in colder weather.
To fit in with our PSHE learning (‘personal responsibility’) our aim in Upper key stage 2 is to promote resilience by supporting the children to be far more independent; reinforcing good learning habits by supporting them with self-motivation and organisation in both their school work and homework. The children are expected to read for at least 15 minutes each evening and make a note of pages read in their Reading Diary. They are also asked to select ONE longer activity weekly from the list in their Reading Diary to complete each week. The Diary should be handed in every FRIDAY. Spelling lists for the term are available on DB Primary and it is up to the children to practise those spellings ready for their weekly spelling test. Each Friday your child will be set a Maths task on Mathletics. This should be completed before Wednesday morning. It is your child’s responsibility to talk to their class teacher if they have any difficulty with their homework.
Bags: The cloakroom area for the children is limited.. Please ensure that all bags brought into school are of a reasonable size and that all personal property is taken home on a Friday. The children are encouraged to be responsible for their own belongings, however, it is still worth checking for letters etc.at the end of each day.
The children will have access to drinking water throughout the day and should bring in their own bottle. If your child has an inhaler, please could you make sure that it is clearly named and in date. Their inhaler should be in school, to be accessed at all times. If your child requires any other medication please could you make both class teachers and the office staff aware.
Formal parents’ evenings will be held in October to discuss your child’s progress. However, if you would like to discuss any aspect of your child’s education or have any concerns at any time throughout the term, please do not hesitate to make an appointment. We look forward to working with you.