Welcome to Beech & Birch
This week, we investigated different substances in science – salt, sand, rice, oil, honey, washing-up liquid and oobleck (cornflour and water) – and we discovered that not all materials follow the simple rules of solid, liquid and gas. Salt, sand and rice are solids which can be poured like liquids, but they pile up into a heap unlike liquids! Oobleck can be poured like a liquid, but if you hit it or move it quickly, it crumbles like a solid – very mysterious!
Today was year 4’s turn to lead worship for the KS2 classes and they did a fantastic job – greeting everyone, speaking clearly, taking ideas from the other children and leading our prayers.
Our theme was ‘A Better World Through Education’. We considered our own school day routines and then compared the school days of two children, one from the UK and one from Bangladesh (4,925 miles away!). We also looked at two articles from the United Nations ‘Convention on the Rights of the Child’, understanding that all children throughout the world are entitled to free primary education and different forms of secondary education must be available too. We also also talked about how this is not always the case and how lucky we are to be able to come to school.
Please protect children who cannot attend school, especially those whose cannot get to school because of conflicts, emergencies, and natural disasters.
Bless all children and help provide opportunities for learning so that through education, all children can find the hope and skills for a better future.
This year for maths week the children have taken part in a Money Sense workshop, solved maths puzzles in PE and completed a maths-themed escape room.
Money Sense Workshop
The children used their maths skills to help the Clark family save money whilst saving the planet!
During PE, the children completed 2 activities, solving 11 maths problems in each. Once they’d solved the problems, their answers formed a code to search for letters in two 11-character words. All groups solved activity 1 and two teams managed to solve activity 2 as well!
Time Thief Escape Room
A prisoner is freed to help steal a time machine… and destroy it!!! Taking on the role of the freed prisoner, the children had to solve 7 maths puzzles to find the code to start the self-destruct sequence and destroy the time machine.
Today was a very different day in year 4 and across the school. With only a small number of children actually in school we did things slightly differently!
In class, the children enjoyed playing on Times Tables Rock Stars and completing their Reading Plus activities. At 10am, a TTRS tournament started between Beech and Birch to allow both those at school and at home to compete together to steer their class to victory. At 3pm, when the tournament finished, Beech emerged victorious with some very strong competitors playing at home! Well done Beech 🎉🎸⭐
As we couldn’t go outside for break time, year 4 joined year 5 for a Bench Ball competition and gave year 5 a run for their money!
After lunch the children spent time on mindful colouring, thinking about Friendship our value for this term. We also had a rare appearance of Film Club and all enjoyed watching Elemental together (quite apt with the elements causing today’s upheaval!)
We’re back and ready for another busy term of learning.
Alongside our maths’ learning this term, our focus at school and at home is to learn the 6-times table.
The Year 4 team
Mr Houghton and Miss Fellows
Miss Hatwell, Miss Wayland, Miss Ellis and Mr Shearn.
This term, Year 4 have been reading ‘Hope Jones Saves the World’ by Josh Lacey and today we were lucky enough to be able to speak to him and ask him questions about his books.
The children asked lots of questions and were really interested in Josh’s replies. They were amazed that he had written over 40 books so far and that it takes around 2 years to create a book from initial idea to published article. Josh explained how he edits his books and how hard he finds this process, which the children really agreed with, but they understood how important it is to do it to make sure your finished story is the best it can be.
Josh also told them how he works with lots of different people when publishing his books, from editors who look at the words of the story to illustrators and designers who create the look of the book. Sometimes he doesn’t even meet the people face-to-face because they live in other countries!
It was a lovely afternoon and we are very grateful to Josh for giving up his precious time to speak to us.
On 12th / 13th October, Beech and Birch classes spent 2 days and 1 night away from home at the wonderful Kench Hill Centre near Tenterden. The moods in the days leading up to the trip were ones of excitement and worry – excitement about the amazing activities they had heard about, and worry as for many this was their first time ever away from home.
After everyone had arrived, we started with a welcome from Barney and the team and we were shown around the grounds, seeing some of the activities we were going to take part in, meeting some of the other team members as well as the animals – ponies and chickens!
Day 1 – Morning Activities
Our first two activities were shelter building and orienteering. We split into our two classes for these activities, swapping half-way through the morning.
In shelter building, we went into the wooded area next to the Kench Hill grounds and the children built shelters using the living trees, large wooden branches and tarpaulin. The aim was to make them waterproof and they were going to be tested at the end!
The orienteering activity started in the classroom to allow the children time to familiarise themselves with map orientation, compass points (N,S,E,W) and map keys. When they headed outside they were guided to various points on the map, ensuring they kept the map orientated correctly at all times. Once they were ready, different maps were distributed to the teams and they were set off on their task to find codes to release the treasure. The children had to work as a team and no new clues were given unless the whole team arrived back to provide their answers!
Day 1 – Afternoon Activities
After we a shared a lovely lunch, the afternoon was packed with 3 different activities. The classes were split into 3 groups and rotated around the different activities throughout the afternoon. They had a go at the climbing wall and the blindfolded obstacle course, circus skills and soft archery.
We finished our day after dinner with hot chocolate and a snack around the campfire, singing our favourite songs and enjoying watching the flames crackling in the fire pit.
Day 2 – Morning Activities
After a night’s sleep (well, most of the night anyway!) and breakfast, we had two different morning activities – animal habitats and breadmaking.
Day 2 – Afternoon – Kench Hill Olympics!
We finished our time together at Kench Hill with team games and problem solving activities as part of the Kench Hill Olympics! The children were in 8 groups and they had to choose a country to represent – we had Great Britain, Spain, Portugal, India, United States of America, Turkey, Australia and Italy. And our winners were… Spain!
The children all had a fantastic time and did not want it to end
This week for our arts week project “we are architects”, the children have been creating pictures of houses using their sewing skills. They started by sketching several pictures using various images for inspiration. They chose their favourite picture and transferred it using pencil or markers to the felt backing. Once complete, they used running stitch and backstitch to create their house, adding different fabrics and buttons to add detail.
Sketchbooks and Final Pieces
Today, year 4 were outside in the sunshine for their PE lessons. Birch were learning basketball skills and Beech were practising the ball control in tennis.
Birch played some short basketball games in small teams.
Beech practised controlled hitting over a net of cones to their partner.
Today, year 4 led our key stage 2 worship in the hall. Our theme was Jesus’ teachings about our actions. Our worship leaders from last year presented alongside our new worship leaders, handing over the reins to them for this year.
The children read from Matthew 7:15-20 in which Jesus talked about good and bad trees – good trees produce good fruit, bad trees produce bad fruit. Jesus was talking about us and how our actions (our fruit) speak louder than words. Other people know us by our actions, often before even meeting us, so it is important that we show our best side at all times.
One of the children became a fruit tree, bearing good fruit from the suggestions made by the children across years 3 to 6. You can see their suggestions for good actions in the pictures!
After we sang together (When I needed a neighbour…), the children finished our worship with a prayer:
May our actions always be good so that people will know us by the good ways we behave.
Help us always to try our best to follow your ways.