When you have the same class teacher for two or three years, there is no downtime at the start of the year. Our 4th Class are really working hard right off the bat.
Writing: The children are enjoying beginning to learn about the Odyssey. This week they have written great dialogues from inside the Trojan horse; they are working on making their writing engaging for the reader with rich vocabulary and on using the correct punctuation and spacing for direct speech.
Dictation: We have begun a weekly program of dictation to help children practise giving their full attention with a focus on handwriting and spelling. Each week, using our spelling focus, the children will copy text (using their cursive script as much as they can), and then write the text in a dictation.
Maths: we have been revising and learning new strategies for adding and subtracting in our heads, and also moving on to practise formal algorithms and problem solving. They are all making progress and showing courage and determination to push through challenges. We are also having weekly times tables tests. They are each working at their own level and aiming at being able to answer 50 questions correctly in 5 minutes. Chanting tables in the car, listening to a CD, having quick quizzes on the way to school are all great ways to practice this essential maths knowledge.
Science: we began our new Science unit on forces today by exploring what makes things move and how we can change the speed and direction in moving an object. They discussed what a force is and did some hands-on experimenting with push and pull forces in class and in the playground with a selection of equipment.
History: we are beginning to learn about why explorers set sail and about who they might have met on the way. This week they finished researching pirates or privateers who profited from stealing from trading ships using the Chromebooks.
PDHPE: This week Fourth class visited Healthy Harold who is still a very popular character. They were led through some excellent activities to teach them about the different systems of the body and what we can do to keep our bodies healthy. We discussed diet, the effects of smoking and the need to drink plenty of water (rather than soft drinks). Our teacher, Louise, showed us how much sugar was in soft drinks which gave them all a fright! The program also looked at bullying and they role-played what they could do and say in a situation of being bullied. The children were all sent home with some information following the session which outlines more fully what was discussed.
Homework: Children should refer to their homework diaries and ensure they have packed up their homework each week to hand in on Fridays. Inside their homework diaries they have pasted log-ins for the online Sound Waves program. There are many games on this site that they can play to practise the phoneme (sound) and graphemes (letters that represent the sound) that we are focusing on. This week we looked at ‘b bb’, next week is ‘a’.
Digital Technologies User Agreement: Yesterday the children were given a ITC agreement which they discussed in their library lesson with Mrs Slaven. Please read this again with the children and then have then sign and date it, alongside your signature – thank you. Currently, 4th class are using Chromebooks once or twice a week for research as part of our History unit.