Menu
  • Fir Tree Junior School

'Learning and Growing Together'

Home Page

Ash Year 4

Ash Class 2020/2021

Welcome to Ash Class 2020 - 2021! We are a class of 28 bright, caring and enthusiastic children. Mrs Hillier is the class teacher but we are also very lucky to have Mrs Hutton and Mrs North, the teaching assistants that are on hand to help with anything. We are all really excited about coming back to school and having some fun! 

Please can you bring your own pencil case to school (due to Covid).

 

In the event of self isolation or further lockdown

In the event of your child needing to self isolate please use the homework links provided for activities. In the event of our class bubbles isolating or a whole school closure due to lockdown, we will be using Teams online. Your child will need their username and password to access Teams.

Contact us

Please leave your message below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Term 6

 

This term, our project is all about Early Settlers, including the Anglo-Saxons and Vikings. We shall be exploring their lives and legacies, famous stories, artefacts and important people amongst many other things!

 

P.E will be on Wednesdays and Fridays. Please come dressed in kit on these days, wear sunscreen if appropriate and bring a sun hat.

 

This is the last term of brass lessons. If your child is interested in continuing their instrument, please look at the Oxfordshire County Music website for more information about group lessons and also let your teacher know.

 

Please do look at the documents below which will give you more information including ideas about the ‘Surprise Me’ homework which is due in on the week beginning 12th July.

Our amazing Early Settler surprise-me homework!

Sports Day!

Sports Day

Still image for this video

IMG_7693.MOV

Still image for this video

IMG_7668.MOV

Still image for this video

IMG_7666.MOV

Still image for this video

IMG_7640.MOV

Still image for this video

IMG_7639.MOV

Still image for this video

Anglo Saxon weaving

More maths - angles

"To help us to learn all about angles, we went around the school and tried to find as many different angles as possible. There are lots - the tricky part was to identify the angles when they were not on a straight line. We really enjoyed this - it was fun! Thanks for helping us to capture the evidence," Ash Class comments

Brass lessons are going really well - if you want to continue into year 5 with lessons, please let Mrs Hillier know.

Booster maths - we played card games

Maths in term 6 - statistics

Year 4 are working on statistics in maths. We are learning how to collect data and the best way to present it. We collected uniform data by using a tally chart, then we made a real-life bar chart to display the data before drawing a bar graph in our books.

We were then able to ask questions about the data like

"How many people in total?"

"How many people are wearing a cardigan?"

"How many more people are wearing a polo than a dress?"

Playground games

We have worn non-uniform today to celebrate NSPCC’s Childhood Day. We also spent time learning retro playground games like ‘duck, duck, goose’ and skipping games. We enjoyed learning the rules for the old fashioned games too!

 

Term 5

 

This term our project is ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ by William Shakespeare.

Over the course of the term, we shall be exploring the life and historical times of William Shakespeare as well as this famous play and story. We begin with looking at examples of other fantasy story settings so that we can compare the work of Shakespeare with modern day equivalents, drawing on parallels between settings, character relationships, character analysis and plot.  We shall be tapping into drama and role play to explore ideas and dilemmas through techniques such as freeze frames, role on the wall and conscious alley.  Our writing will recreate the features of fantasy writing and include high levels of description and writing techniques.

 

Please see below for the project overview for term 4 for a further breakdown of learning to be explored and also the home learning ideas sheet for pursuing areas of interest.  We always welcome surprise me homework related to our projects!

 

This term, PE is on Tuesdays and Friday

Athletics will be with Mr Hutton on Tuesdays and rounders will be with class teachers.

 

We are pleased to announce that brass lessons resume once more on Monday afternoons, with Mr Browne, a specialist from the Oxfordshire County Music Service.

Lighthouse Keeper's Son (science circuits and storytelling)

Tudor Houses

To be able to light up our Tudor Houses we learned many things:

First of all we had to learn how to make a circuit - we did this in our science project on electricity.

We had to make sure there is a complete circle so that the electricity can flow.

We did lots of experiments to work out how to make the bulbs lighter and how many batteries to use

 

Once we had worked out how to make the bulbs work, we had to make our houses.

In the beginning, we researched the type of house Shakespeare lived in. Many Tudor houses had an overhang, the one where Shakespeare lived didnt - it looked huge. They had different types of walls - make of beams - these are black. They also had leaded windows. 

In pairs, we constructed the houses and decorated them so that they looked authentic.

Then we cut out a window and put the circuit inside. 

Look carefully and you can see the light.

 

Brass

Science - electricity!

Wow! That was the best science lesson ever. We learned how to make a circuit using wires, a battery and a bulb. Then we experimented using more and fewer batteries, wires and bulbs. We found out the more batteries the brighter the bulb. Some of us also found that the circuit can be continued with pencil sharpeners - that is because they are conductors. 

A recipe for a fantastic family

Do you have a fantastic family? If not, follow some of our recipes!

We have been looking at what makes a loving and safe family environment. To write our recipes we also looked at quantities and measurements.

Some of the comments the children made 

"You need some arguments so that you learn to discuss an issue in a good way"

"You don't always have to agree with someone"

"Our family has lots of bad Dad jokes"

"We have to learn to share"

"I love my family, even if we don't always get on"

"We are all special - have you noticed everyone has a different type of family"

 

Skipping

We learned many new skills during our skipping taster session. These included:

Learning to hold the handles properly - it made skipping so much easier

Learning to jump into the big rope being swung round - it was a bit scary but I did it

Learning to skip backward - I've never done that before

The best bit was learning to do tricks - they were great - I need a skipping rope!

Term 4

 

We begin this term with a ‘Take One Tale’ focus followed by ‘Creepy Crawlies’, a science- based project.

 

For our week long ‘Take One Tale’ project, we have chosen ‘Anansi, the Spider’, an African and Caribbean myth. We shall be exploring and further developing storytelling techniques, resulting in being able to confidently retell the story. Cross-curricular links will be made to art, history and geography too.

 

Our ‘Creepy Crawlies’ project will be exploring the characteristics and classification of minibeasts. Exploration of different local habitats is central to our learning as is the impact of human and natural changes on environments.

 

Please see the project overview for term 4 for a further breakdown of learning to be explored.

 

 

Please note our PE days are MONDAY and THURSDAY. Please come to school wearing your PE kit.

Model creepy crawlies

Easter learning

Tennis lesson

We have been learning a broader range of skills, enjoying communicating and collaborating with each other. We had to evaluate our successes and recognise where we could have made improvements.

"I liked it when we used the racquet to hit the ball to each other"

"I learned how to hit the ball more accurately"

"I know I have to tap it lightly to get it to my partner"

"I learned to use my racquet to hit the ball to my partner, because I had rehearsed it with my hand first."

If you can be anything ... bee kind!

Ash Class collaborative artwork celebrating our return to school 

Branching Database - our science learning

We have been learning about the classification of living things.  By asking scientific questions with a yes or no answer, we were able to sort a group of 8 rainforest animals into individual groups. The questions had to be based on facts about the characteristics we had learnt about the animals rather than opinion.

‘Does it run fast?’ and ‘Is it cute?’  are examples of questions that are a matter of opinion. ‘Does it have wings?’ and ‘Does it have two legs?’ are more specific and scientific.

Make them smile! Our Red Nose Day quiz! Can you guess the smiles?

Ash Class visit the garden

The children always enjoy going out into the garden with Mel, this week we were able to weed the front of the school grounds. Here are some quotes from the children,

"I love the garden - it helps me learn about our world"

"I found creatures!"

"I learned what plants are weeds and how to pull them up"

"I think we've tidied up the front of the school - doesn't that look better?"

 

Ash Class - teamwork!

Mini beast inspired artwork - using natural resoures

We learned so much during our session outside making mini-beast inspired art using things we could find within nature. Some quotes from the children:

"I had to learn to improvise because the shapes and things I would have used were not available:

"I learned to share resources"

"I learned the best places to find things, then I told the other groups"

"I can't believe we made something so lovely out of sticks and leaves"

"I can't wait to do this again at playtime"

"I used my imagination to make the butterfly"

"I also learned to work in a group, take it in turns to discuss my ideas and use someone else's ideas"

 

Anansi the spider - take one tale

Term 3

We begin this term with a classical music focus. Our project explores a piece of music in depth whilst making cross curricular links to history, art, drama, storytelling and dance.  We shall be looking at the life of the composer and the circumstances, purposes and visions for the music. Characteristic sounds and motifs will be explored and replicated using body, voice and percussion instruments whilst learning further musical terminology. The class will be working towards an end performance.

After ‘Take One Piece’, without Covid, we would have been working towards a Year 4 production of ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’. The same skills will be practised and developed, covering many drama elements and we aim to record aspects of the work for you to enjoy. Our writing will be exploring characterisation and script writing.

Making puppets of the characters is going to be a design and technology focus which promises to be fun, exploring and refining sewing skills.

Please note that PE will be on Tuesday and Fridays this term and children still need to come to school dressed in their PE kit on these days.

Please ensure that pencil cases are replenished with writing and colouring pencils, a pencil sharpener, glue stick, ruler and rubber where possible.

Our online learning in Term 3 during lockdown

 

Toothpaste

Mini projects to research the history of toothpaste, the science of its ingredients, then learning how to use a net to construct a box. Decorating the box to make it stand out - using keywords to grab the attention of potential buyers. Some children also wrote and recorded their own adverts!

 

Lockdown learning - maths

Lockdown learning - poetry

As well as our Fantastic Mr Fox project, we have enjoyed reading a range of genres. This week we read two poems, the classic 'From a Railway Carriage' by Robert Louis Stevenson and a nonsense poem 'Walking with my Iguana' by Brian Moses. The children voted 15 - 9 in favour of From a Railway Carriage - loving the rhythm of a train created by the words (Charlie) and its beautiful imagery (Vi). Lily preferred 'Walking with my Iguana' saying 'It's funny' and Ben liked the 'rhythm', but some thought it was too repetitive (George) and that it didn't make sense (Ryan).

Here is some of the work completed using the poems as inspiration

Ms Khan's assembly message

Fantastic Mr Fox - Puppet Design

This week we have been given the tricky task of making a puppet - choosing the character, materials, pattern and style. There were many problems to be solved before the design element started. Children thought carefully about their learning:

Lisa " I will improve my art skills"

Violet "I will learn how to use fabric and sew"

Freya "I learned how to use black card and carefully cut out a shape"

Ben "I learned to sew and made a puppet with felt and buttons"

Other skills learned - investigation (to find out why the eyes won't stick on!), imagination and perseverance! 

Writing our own play scripts 

Sam, Evie, Oliver and Ben demonstrated their knowledge of converting a comic into a play script. They all learned how to carefully choose adverbs!

"I have learned that I need to put how the character must talk"

"We wrote the S2S together then had to write our own script from a cartoon"

"It was fun deciding how the characters would say the words"

 

Writer's Workshop - The Lighthouse

We used a film of 'The Lighthouse' to inspire our writer's workshop, choosing to write stories and poems

Fantastic Mr Fox - map making

Our first task was to construct a map, using all the information in the text. Such creative ideas ranging from Minecraft, models with clay, 2D paper maps using perspective and large 3D models. Children's comments:

"I learned how to make it look like the tunnel was underground"

"I wanted to make mine on Minecraft because there are chickens on there - like the farmers"

"I took ages to get this to look just right" 

Fantastic Foxes Gallery

Please enjoy this gallery of artwork at a time when children are missing seeing what their classmates are achieving through not being in school due to lockdown. This is an opportunity to share and enjoy completed work, celebrating the differences and uniqueness of each piece. It was not possible to dictate using a particular medium for this task, as not everyone has access to the same resources at home, hence why the task was purely to include a fox using mediums of choice.

In our group lessons, we discussed how to achieve the texture of the fur, lines, details, proportions, shades and tones.

Fantastic Mr Fox Masks

Friday’s creative challenge was to produce a mask for one of the animal characters in the story, ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’. Many children took on the full challenge like a designer and explored the different processes involved, researching masks, planning their design, making it and finally evaluating it.

Some people found making templates useful and practising bits that they thought were going to be tricky. They were able to improve their cutting skills. 

Please enjoy looking at the gallery below and see if you can guess who is behind each mask!

Hello autumn!

Term 2

This term, our main project is entitled ‘Disgusting Digestion’. We shall be learning about key organs in the body and their functions. There is a lot of technical vocabulary with this project and we would appreciate it if you could reinforce this language at home. Many of the keywords are written on the project map sheet for you to refer to. Tea-time is the perfect opportunity to discuss some of the ideas associated with this project, although it is not for the faint-hearted!

We begin the term with a local history and geography focus, centred around Oxford. A key text will be about an Anglo-Saxon princess entitled, ‘The Princes Who Hid in the Tree’ which is about Saint Frideswide who has a medieval shrine in the cathedral in what is now the site of Christ Church. Her tale is one of adventure, courage, danger, friendship and kindness.

Thank you and well done to all those taking part in the ‘Street Tag’ challenge. It is pleasing to see so many children from Year 4 taking part and having fun! Keep up the good work here!

Our learning in Term 2

Christmas week

Stained Glass Windows

We learned the story of Saint Frideswide, the Patron Saint of Oxford. We wanted to demonstrate our learning by making stained glass windows, like the one that is dedicated to her in Christ Church Cathedral.

We collected information and decided to make our windows using a collage effect with tissue paper. In the process of making the stained glass window, we have learned to use a variety of techniques for cutting, overlapping and layering and we designed a silhouette in the window which considered a key element of the story.

Unfortunately, we couldn't have an open morning, but here is a selection of the learning we would have shown you!

Andy Warhol inspired art

Disgusting Digestion - our shared learning

My World construction morning

In constructing 'My World' we learned 

To use our imaginations,

To plan our ideas and think about the resources we needed,

We used a range of techniques - painting, cutting, gluing, moulding and building with bricks which developed our artistic techniques

After we finished, we described our finished worlds using a range of vocabulary.

Ash Class thoroughly enjoyed making their 'My Worlds; what an imaginative bunch they are!

We celebrated Christingle and learned about the symbols behind each part

We've really enjoyed our Chance to Shine Cricket lessons

Maths Day - we created tally charts and bar graphs to represent the number of letters in words in our reading books

Maths Day art - using symmetrical patterns

Ash Class fun in the forest!

Surprise me homework

Term 1 

 

This term, we begin with a mini project, ‘Take One Picture’ where we will be looking at a painting by Wassily Kandinsky. We shall be exploring the artwork, the artist, the historical context and making links with different curriculum areas. Recreating the artwork, exploring how it makes us feel and writing about it descriptively will be a large focus of the work we do.

Our main project is ‘River Journey’, with largely a geographical and scientific focus looking at how rivers form and the water cycle. There are many new scientific terms to learn which you can find on our project map for the term. We would strongly recommend a visit to ‘The River and Rowing Museum‘ in Henley.

Our overriding goal this term is to settle the children back into school routines and support their social, emotional and academic progress. Please drop us an email via the school office with any worries or concerns.

Our learning in Term 1

Science - water cycle in a cup - how is yours developing?

Celebrating the meaning of Harvest Festival

Ash Class visited the garden!

Science has been all about investigations

Surprise me work on rivers - I've already been blown away by some children bringing in model rivers and research - well done!