Welcome to year 3 and 4’s blog!

Here you will find updates and photographs of our learning over the weeks.
Back to the class overview

Friday 17th November
In English, we have been continuing our work based around the picture book, ‘I am Henry Finch’. On Monday, the children were presented with a very peculiar picture from the book whereby they had to use their inference skills to try and predict what was happening. In pairs, they had to try and answer the following 3 Key Questions: Where is he? How is he feeling? What does it remind you of? Following on from this, they had to write their own diary entry as if they were Henry Finch experiencing whatever they had predicted. Something which produced some very interesting reads! On Tuesday, Miss Glynn read to us the rest of the story, which left us with the somber realisation that Henry Finch, although incredibly brave, met his unfortunate fate. To help us develop the skill of summarising, we were challenged with having to retell the whole story in exactly 50 words – and although incredibly tricky, we absolutely loved this challenge! Finally on Friday, we looked at similes and how they can help to make our writing more descriptive and therefore more interesting. We then followed this up in English by drafting a short epitaph for the late Henry Finch. 

In mental maths this week, the children were engrossed in their time tables practising. Some of the year 4s have developed their own ‘Times Table Game’ where they pick a times table, all write a selection of questions and then race one another to complete it first. Some of the year threes have been working so hard that they have progressed onto their 9x tables this week – an incredible feat. Here are some of them practising on our ‘Speed Test’ table. 

In PE on Wednesday morning, year 3/4 faced their biggest challenge yet: to keep moving around the school field for 20 minutes! They were allowed to sprint, run, jog or walk but they had to ensure that they kept moving. This was great for them in developing their own understanding of how to pace themselves. Some of the year 4s managed to run as whopping 39 laps (equivalent to 3 miles!)

During our topic time this week, 

 

Friday 10th November
This week, we embraced the Barvember Challenge: a daily maths challenge focused on supporting children to use the bar model to tackle a variety of complex maths problem. On the left, one of Florrie and Theodor’s year 3 problem whilst Heather and Otto wrack their brains around the year 4 problem! 

 

During SPaG time, we have begun learning about the make-up of a dictionary, developing our understanding of how the words are organised and finding new ways to look for words more effectively. In English, we have been continuing our work around the picture book I am Henry Finch. Having read up to page 7, we then created a new character, Bob Finch. The children then planned and wrote their own short story on Monday and Tuesday based upon where they thought the story could go next.

Our Topic this week revolved around computing – designing our own Prey vs. Predator game and writing (programming) our own set of instructions that would allow the prey to safely navigate across the grid without being eaten by the predator.
 

Wednesday 8th November: Feathers and Fur Workshop
On Wednesday, we were incredibly lucky to welcome Sadie, a falconer at Feathers and Fur Falconry visit our school hall! She brought with her three birds of prey: Wiggy the barn owl; Milo the harris hawk; and Bourneville the kestrel. We learnt of the significant differences between the three birds. 

With Wiggy, we learnt that barn owls don’t have oily feathers meaning that we were allowed to stroke him without harming his feathers. We had to remain extra quiet whilst Wiggy was out as his hearing was so advanced, he could hear our hearts beating! Sadie brought along a skull replica for us to see how small owls heads really are underneath all of those incredible feathers.

   

Next, we were introduced to Milo, the harris hawk. Milo’s feathers were exceptionally oily, allowing him to hunt in the rain. As a result, we weren’t allowed to stroke him as the oil on our hands could damage him. Sadie explained that she’d raised Milo from a baby and she brought pictures to show how small he was! As with Wiggy, Sadie also brought another skull replica to show us how big a hawk’s eye sockets are. This helped with our understanding of the phrase ‘eyes like a hawk’. To view our video, please enter the password 3400

Year 3/4 Birds of Prey Workshop from Ella Glynn on Vimeo.

Finally, we were introduced to Bourneville, the kestrel (a small falcon). We learnt that falcons are the only birds, which can hover above their prey by circling their wings. Each of us were allowed to hold Bourneville, which made for a perfect photo opportunity with birthday boy Dylan, Nancy and a wing-flexing moment for Jasper! 

All of the children had a fantastic time and thoroughly enjoyed the workshop.
Have a lovely weekend!

Friday 3rd November
Welcome back! The year threes and fours looked fresh and ready for learning on Monday morning after a well earned rest. We delved straight into our new English unit on Monday morning, with all of the class being shrouded in mystery as they were given blank, white masks to make and wear. We discussed what life would be like if we were all the same and had no identity of our own. 

  

To keep us in suspense a little longer, without revealing the front cover of the book, Miss Glynn told us the name of the book… I am Henry Finch. We then had to predict what we thought he would look like. On Friday, we played a game where we had to work in partners, taking it in turns to describe a page from the story and then make predictions based on what we had been told by our partner. Our predictions developed as we read more of the book! 

 
 
 

In Topic this week, we began our new unit, Predator! We firstly looked at what it means to be a predator or prey and distinguished the clear differences between them. Using our knowledge, we were then able to sort animals using a Venn Diagram. On Friday, we looked at herbivores, carnivores and omnivores and grouped animals again into the different categories. 

   

This term, we will be doing French on a Monday afternoon. We have learnt how to say, “Hello”, “Goodbye” and “My name is…”. We moved onto to learning the poem, ‘Deux petits Oiseaux’, which incorporated the phrases we had learnt. We created finger puppets to help us recite the poem!

  

Please note, due to a mystery guest on Wednesday next week – Times Tables tests will be on Thursday. 

Have a lovely weekend and please stay safe around the fireworks! 

Friday 20th October
In Maths this week, we concluded our work on place value by looking at Roman Numerals. We discussed where in life we might see them: clocks, watches, chapter books, sun dials, in Rome, on movie titles etc. The children were challenged with a range of activities including a number to Roman Numeral match-up, code breaking and colour by Roman Numerals.

In our RE lesson on Tuesday, we continued to learn about the Hindu festival of Diwali. We learnt that Diwali is the festival of lights and so we produced our very own lanterns to symbolise Sita and Rama returning to their home like in the famous Hindu story. 

On Wednesday, the threes and fours took part in a Twitter Competition were they were asked to answer the question, ‘What does reading do for you?’ in only 140 characters. There can only be one entry from the whole school and so Miss Roberts will be deciding the winner from KS2 for who she will put forward! Here are some of our best entries: 

In English, the year threes and fours have been recounting their experience of Windsor Castle. We first produced our ‘vomit draft’ – something the children loved. This was an opportunity for them to get down the main details of their recount without needing to focus on spelling, punctuation or grammar. After they’d written their drafts, the children got into pairs to begin their proofreading. We used numerous strategies to help us check that what we’d written made sense – we read our sentences backwards, forwards, to ourselves and out loud. We moved on to checking our spellings by firstly underlining anything we weren’t sure of and then using a dictionary, the working wall or our word book to help us! Finally, we checked our punctuation – making sure that all of our sentences had capital letters and full stops.  

On Friday morning, six children were awarded their pen licence! A massive well done to: Otto A-B, George C., George I., Malita H., Nancy  W. and Lucia K.! Afterwards, we wrote up our recounts in neat. All of the children were so focused on their work – it showed what a fantastic attitude to learning they have right up until the end of term. 

After break, the children were allowed to get into pairs to solve our traditional ‘end of term’ maths mysteries. This time, they had to use what they’ve learnt about place value this term to solve who had stolen the secret recipe from the Chocolate Factory! They had to use their knowledge of sequences, greater than and less, organising digits to create the largest number they could and identifying the value of digits in a 3- digit number. 

We wish you all a lovely half term break! 

Friday 13th October
What a crazy busy week we’ve had in lower key stage 2 – it feels like we’ve barely spent any time in our classroom! The children are continuing to work on their Bayeux Tapestries, which they started last week. I’m pleased to announce that once completed, Goring Library have agreed to display the children’s artwork for all of the village to see. The piece will be on display from the end of next week up until early December – please go and take a look, it’s fabulous!


 

In Maths this week, we looked at negative numbers and counting backwards through 0. We looked at how these scales can be looked at in either a vertical form (usually on a thermometer) or a horizontal form (number lines). All of the children were challenged with answering word problems to bring the concept to life. 

On Friday morning, we set our sights on Lardon Chase! Once we’d managed to sneak past the bulls and make it to the top we were able to study the surrounding area, using our eyes along with some Ordnance Survey maps to help us. We concluded that in 1066, Lardon Chase would’ve been an optimum place to build a castle; the mound would’ve given a fantastic view of the surrounding area; the River Thames would’ve provided water as well a suitable means of transport into the capital; Common Wood would’ve provided wood for fire, furniture and architecture; the local farmland would’ve been suitable for growing crops and farming livestock. All of the children behaved impeccably and we loved getting out of school to explore the local area! 


  

Wednesday 11th October: Windsor Castle
Our trip got off to a very busy start on Wednesday – which began with us chasing after the guards who’d left the castle earlier than anticipated, which meant all of the year three and four children pacing through the streets of Windsor – fortunately, we were able to use the sound of the marching band to help and we were able to catch the end of the parade. 

Our workshop was incredibly informative. We built upon our knowledge of castle features and why Windsor was such an incredible stronghold. We learnt about when it was first built of wood following the Battle of Hastings. We also went to see the Norman Gateway, which features three murder holes and protected the castle’s keep where the Queen stayed. We learnt how to distinguish when the Queen was in residence at Windsor. 

After the workshop, we went to see Queen Mary’s doll house, which was a stunning 2 meters tall! We then explored the State apartments and got to see a selection of some of the massive rooms that are inside the castle. 

 

 
    


Friday 6th October
Having spent Monday studying the Feudal System – a social class structure invented by William the Conqueror, we moved on to looking at a diary excerpt, which we rehearsed and converted into a short drama piece. We each worked in groups of five and took on either the role of a peasant or a baron. We had to think about how we would feel in our character’s situations, their emotions and their reacts to their own circumstances. We had to consider our homes and the food we would eat and incorporated this into our performances.

The rehearsals:

The performances:

In Maths, we have moved on with our place value work to look at finding more or less than a given number. The year threes were challenged with finding 100 more or less of numbers of various sizes. The year fours were extended further to find 10, 100 and 1000 more or less in numbers with up to 7-digits! To help support our understanding, we used numerous resources that also helped to develop our reasoning and problem solving skills in context. 

In PE on Wednesday, we did circuit training in the hall. We each got into pairs and had to attend ten different stations from star jumps, step ups, tricep dips, sit ups, jogging on the spot, jumping squats and even the dreaded burpees! We were all glad for break time after the lesson but we thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it! 


On Wednesday afternoon, we were delighted to welcome the parents to join our art lesson. Having researched the Bayeux Tapestry in depth, we challenged ourselves to recreate our very own rendition depicting all thirteen scenes from Edward the Confessor’s death through to William’s victory following the Battle of Hastings. 

Please remember that our trip to Windsor is next week! 

Friday 29th September
In Maths this week, the year threes and fours were first set themselves the challenge of getting into height order in complete silence to help with our understanding of the words ‘ascending’ and ‘descending’. The year threes were then challenged to demonstrate their understanding of these terms by ordering numbers up to 1000. The year fours were presented with a similar challenge but with much larger numbers going beyond 1000. On Thursday, we revisited the crocodile symbols: < and > and began using them in context to compare numbers. 

In English, we have been continuing with our Kenning poetry work and have composed our very own Kenning related to 1066. The children used images of Norman armor, knights and weaponry to help inspire their writing. Once they had jotted some of their initial ideas down – they were given time to draft their poems by writing them out on the desks and experiment with the order to see which they preferred.

Today, they all wrote up their own poems in neat. Their handwriting and presentation was so neat that they were all allowed to write their poems in pen – which they absolutely loved! Their work will be available to see at Book-Look on October 10th. 

 

In Computing, the children were introduced to Purple Mash, a new programme to help with all areas of the curriculum. Each of the children were given their own login card, which has been stuck into their reading records alongside their Mathletics details. Please feel free to have a browse at the website as activities may be assigned for homework in the coming weeks. 

In PE this week, Miss Halls introduced the children (and myself) to cheerleading! Miss Halls taught us several different moves. We then got into two groups and composed our own mini-routine, which even included a lift! The lesson certainly got all of our hearts racing and all of the children thoroughly enjoyed themselves. We look forward to doing it again in the future! 

The children have been reminded that the shield homework is due in on Monday.
On Wednesday 4th October, you are invited to come along and help with our Topic lesson where we will be trying to recreate the Bayeux Tapestry through drawing and sketching. The lesson will be from approximately 1.15-2.40.  
Have a lovely weekend!

Friday 22nd September
What a crazy start to the new school year we’ve had! Years three and four have really hit the ground running with their learning this term and all of the children should be proud at how quickly they’ve settled into the new school year. 

In Maths, we have been solely focused on developing our understanding of number and place value. We have been using a wide range of equipment from number squares, number lines, place value counters and diennes blocks to help visualise the size of numbers.


As I’m sure you’ve heard, our topic this term is called ‘1066’ and is focused on the Normans. Our English work so far has seen us produce some very persuasive job applications (some even resorted to bribery!) to be the King/Queen of England in 1066. This past week, we’ve moved onto Kennings, a form of poetry. In our topic lessons, we have been learning about who was fighting for the throne in 1066, and how this led to the Battle of Hastings. We even got to watch a video of Harold Godwinson as he tried to explain why he thought he was the rightful heir. The children then produced their own storyboards documenting the order of events during the build up and in the battle itself. 

 

Our PSHE lesson this week saw us have our very own democratic vote to select who we wanted to represent us as the year 3 and 4 student councillor. The results were very close but a massive congratulations goes to Felicity (year 3) and Otto (year 4) respectively. 

During our PE lessons this term, we will be learning two different sports! On Wednesday mornings, we will be taught netball by our teaching assistant, Miss Halls. On Thursday afternoons, we will be taught hockey by Miss Johnson.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend!