• Fir Tree Junior School

'Learning and Growing Together'

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Maple Year 3

Welcome to Maple Class 



Our teacher is Miss Lloyd and our wonderful teaching assistants are Mrs Bones and Mrs Holley.


On this page you will find information about how things work in Maple Class and some useful resources that you can use to help us in our learning.


This page will be updated termly with information that may be of interest to you regarding projects, timetables, curriculum maps, videos, pictures and more. It will be useful to keep checking this page for any helpful documents and pages that will keep you informed about this year. We have another exciting year ahead!

In the event of self-isolation or further lockdown


In the event of your child needing to self-isolate please use the links above that your child can do in any of the subjects. In the event of our class bubble isolating or a school closure lockdown, we will be using Teams online. Your child will need their username and password to access Teams.

Contact me

Recognition Awards

Term 5 - Our project this term is The Iron Man

Times Tables Support 

Our Learning in Term 4



Maple have continued to explore a range of texts from fiction, non-fiction, and lyrics from songs this term. We have been working on our explanation skills by using evidence from the text to support our reasoning. Alongside this, Maple have continued to work on their retrieval skills, particularly during our lessons from our class read 'The Twit's' by Roald Dahl. 



To celebrate Easter, this term Maple have explored the meanings behind Passover, the last supper and Easter Sunday during Holy Week. We have used our research skills to discover the symbolism behind the Passover seder plate and what this means in Judaism. In addition, we have explored similar symbolistic meanings within Easter Sunday and how Christian's celebrate. 

Fir Tree Garden


During our garden session, we began by preparing the bed that will soon grow strawberries, raspberries and gooseberries. The children attacked the weeds with great enthusiasm using garden forks and spades, during which the children found a total 17 worms which they learnt was very good for the soil. We all got to taste freshly picked sorrel, the majority of whom enjoyed it, with some deciding it was a bit too sour!


"I love doing this!" - Jake

"I do this all the time with my Mum" - Millie

"I wish we can do gardening everyday" - Emie

"This is hard work but we're helping Mother Nature. Mother Nature is all around us" - Teddy

"Gardening is one of my favourite things to do!" - Allegra



This term Maple have been exploring explanation texts. We began by looking at the language used within 'Funny Bones' to help us plan our comic strips. Following returning to school we continued to look at explanation phrases that could help us explain different reasons for how something works or why it happens. The children had a great time creating ideas and explanations for where teachers go after school and explaining why Goldy Locks decided to eat the Three Bears' porridge. We have also used drama in a variety of scenarios to aid our writing.

Fir Tree Forest


Maple had an exciting visit to the forest and pond this term. The children gathered round the pond where Mrs Thatcher gave each child an opportunity to study the frogspawn in the pond and a jar using a magnifying glass to encourage their inquisitiveness. The children were then shown the stages of a frog growing and developing using models growing from eggs, tadpoles, tadpoles with legs, to a fully grown frog. The children were very interested to learn that a grown frog always comes back to the pond it is born in.


Following this, the children took part in the 'flora picture checklist' and searched for various plants that will bloom in the Spring. Some children enjoyed experimenting by creating interesting beats and rhythms using the musical area. Whilst others added to the den using sticks and branches plus experimenting in the mud kitchen. The children also found many different types of insects, with the most intriguing being a beetle which makes interesting designs on tree trunks.

Red Nose Day Comic Relief 2021


To use the power of funny to turn laughs into lasting change, year 3 have interpreted Comic Relief's theme this year by holding an outdoors talent show. This opportunity was very exciting for the children as they got to work collaboratively to demonstrate their range of fantastically unique talents! We were able to socially distanced join the show with Willow class who also performed wonderful talents too. The children created a range of activities including magic shows, football skills, poem reading, joke telling, story reading, puppet interpretations, comedy acts, singing and dancing. In addition to this, the children all wrote a joke sealed in an envelope and sent it to someone in Willow class (who also sent jokes to us) decorated beautifully with the aim of making someone smile or laugh. The children really enjoyed this opportunity to work with Willow. 



This term we have been continuing to work on our understanding of measurements by looking at length and perimeter. This has been followed by starting our work which explores number fractions. We have been building on our knowledge of halves, quarters and thirds by applying our understanding to problem solving scenarios whilst interpreting a variety of visual representations. This work will support us moving into term 5 where we will continue to build on our number fractions understanding. 



Within science this term, Maple have had fun exploring the functions of the skeleton and muscles within animal and human bodies. We have used our research skills to find out the types of skeleton and why they are appropriate for different species. We have used our understanding to explain and make comparisons between humans and different animals, alongside interpreting these ideas of what would happen if we did not have a specific type of skeleton or muscle. This has led us to understand the functional importance of the skeleton which is to provide protection, movement and support. We have developed our understanding of the importance of the skeletal system further  by examining the functions of our joints and how these are appropriate for a range of movements and activities. We have used our prediction skills to create initial ideas for discussion in relation to the appropriateness of a variation of joints for different parts of the body and then compared and contrasted the need for these, having carried out our own test. In addition, we have worked collaboratively to further our understanding of the names of the bones in the skeletal system and why each is importance alone and as part of a structure.



This term Maple have had a wonderful opportunity to test their coordination skills within hockey, tennis and cricket. In our hockey sessions we have practised our ball handling skills by passing and receiving the ball in a variety of situations. This has incorporated small game scenarios where the children have had to work as a team to communicate and encourage each other with their passing. Additionally, in tennis Maple have practised their ball control skills with the racket by using a variety of shots under and over arm. We have explored how changing the force behind our shots can enable us to hit and receive the ball with more control. Further to this, we were able to have our cricket taster session which focused on our throwing and catching skills. Maple have worked independently and as part of a team to practise how we receive the ball as well as working on our reaction times during small game exercises. This was followed by small team challenges to bat and ball to each other, practising our control.



Maple have started the term by exploring the artwork of Julian Opie. We have identified what makes Opie's work stand out including; bold colours, flat colour, bold lines, simplified characteristics and portraits. Our research began with looking at what influences Opie and what materials he uses to create his own artworks. We practised Opie's technique by recreating some of his own artworks first by using our observation skills. This was followed by our own interpretation of Opie's work by creating our own self portraits in the same style. Our artwork linked nicely with the beginning of our Science project 'Amazing Bodies' where we look at how the body functions using muscles and the skeleton.

World Book Day 2021


To celebrate world book day this year, Maple have used their fantastic imaginations to come up with some creative potato book character models! The children chose a book and character of their choice, using the only essential requirement for this challenge: a potato. Together we discussed why we liked our chosen characters and books, and what captured our interest about them. We asked ourselves why reading is important and how it makes us feel. Following this, we used our planning and design skills to draw our character on paper, labelled with the materials we intended to use and how we were going to make them. This enabled us to be ready for the making process. 

Our online learning in Term 3 during lockdown




Within our science work this term, Maple have use their skills to plan and prepare two experiments by working scientifically. First, we defined and named the experiment we were conducting by identifying what we wanted to find out. This included preparing equipment, organising results tables, naming our experiment, and identifying variables we need to monitor to allow for a fair test result. We also made predictions by hypothesizing our results and later compared this to our collected results by summarising what we have discovered. We used our results table to outline our findings, which aided our evaluation of how we could carry out the experiment differently in the future. We also compared our results to others, and began to ask questions why there may  have been differences. We also had tremendous fun doing something new and exciting!



P.E. this term has included encouraging the children to stay active at home. We have used the Oxfordshire school's bingo grid which provide a range of activities to test a range of skills such as co-ordination and balance using items of equipment that may be found at home. Some of these have been quite inventive, for example, using their bed's as a 'high jump' the children have enjoyyyed challenging themselves to stay active and think creatively about exercise challenges. 



This term Maple have used their fantastic creative skills to design, plan and construct their own Roman Mosaic's. Maple have applied their understanding of the importance of size, pattern and colour to compose their own pieces using a range of different materials. 



This term, Maple class have used their skills to explore, identify and explain their understanding within Hinduism. We have examined the five daily duties by acknowledging the similarities and differences to our own lives and others following the Hindu faith. We have recognised that Hindu's follow the five daily duties to help guide a person in everyday life by: worshipping god, studying the Vedas and Scriptures, contemplate the teachings of Holy Men, providing alms and showing hospitality. We have also used Hindu stories to evaluate and summarise actions, choices and consequences made by others and interpreted how these link to our researched knowledge of  the 'Four Purposes of Life' which are Dharma, Kama, Artha and Moksha.



Maple have had great fun exploring Roman Britain this term. Some of the things we have explored include: Roman Roads, Hadrian's Wall, Roman food, the life of a Gladiator, Mosaic's, the Roman Empire, Boudicca, the Roman Army, Julius Caesar and Roman Emperor's. We have used our knowledge of Roman life to fuel our writing as well as artwork and design skills. Here are some examples of our project work:



Our writing work this term has used 'Escape from Pompeii' as our writing stimulus. We have used our five senses to help us construct and imagine what it would be like before and after the eruption. We have gathered ideas through discussion online and mind mapping key vocabulary together. Having used the pictures as inspiration, we demonstrated our understanding of what it might feel like by composing our ideas within a setting description. We have collected key verbs, adverbs and adjectives to use within our descriptive language. As well as applying our knowledge of prepositional phrases to help set the scene. 



Within Maths this term we have continued to compare statements, multiply and divide two digits by one digits and applying this knowledge to solving scaling problems. We have also explored pounds and pence by converting, adding and subtracting money plus also giving change. We applied our knowledge of money to problem solve and discuss problems. Finally, we ended the term by looking at pictograms and bar charts. This work involved comparing and interpreting the data shown and applying our number knowledge to different types of tables. 



Within reading this term, Maple have explored a range of texts applying their prediction, summarising, explaining, inference and retrieval skills. We have explored songs and lyrics as well as fiction and non-fiction texts. These lessons have included retrieval of information from within the text, followed by discussion and individual thinking questions. Our sessions have then concluded with either writing our response by apply our practised skills of predicting, summarising, explaining, inferring and retrieving for our chosen text. 

Take One Piece


Maple have started term three by exploring the musical work of Johannes Brahms. We have used our research skills and the 5W's to retrieve information about the composer and musician. In addition to this, we have focused our work on Brahms' piece 'Hungarian Dance No.5'. Together we have mind mapped our ideas and visual imagery related to the music and have used this to fuel inspiration for our Hakiu poems. The choice of vocabulary we have been able to generate, was followed by carefully selecting how we would plan and write our own Haiku poems responding to the music. Maple had great fun sharing their poem ideas by clapping the ssyllables of each line to each other on screen.

Our learning in Term 2


Maple Christmas Party


To celebrate the end of term and the fantastic work the children have made, we began decorating the classroom by challenging ourselves to see how long we could make a paper chain from our scrap paper. Maple really worked as a team to create the decorations and were so proud of each other for contributing towards a goal. We then sat down to enjoy our Christmas lunches with some festive music in the background. This was later followed by a silent disco in the hall, which the children were incredibly excited about! Merry Christmas Maple Class and a Happy New Year!



This term Maple have been learning about Christianity and in particular the story of the nativity. Maple have also enjoyed learning about Christingle and it's symbol of the Christian faith. We have identified that the orange represents the world; the red ribbon around it is the love of God; the fruits/sweets symbolise God's creation and the candle represents Jesus, the light of the world. 


In relation, Maple have also relished the opportunity to learn about Diwali which intertwined with Maths week. To bring these two subject areas together, the children designed and created their own Rangoli patterns to display in class. Rangoli patterns are colourful designs made on the floor using coloured rice powder and are used by Hindus during Diwali celebrations to traditionally welcome good luck. Within Maths, Rangoli patterns have been a great way to explore symmetry, reflection and tessellation. 





During our reading this term, we have formulated, described, predicted, retrieved and explained ideas relating to our class read 'Oliver and the Seawigs' by Philip Reeves. During our lessons the children have begun by using their retrieval skills to answer 'quick quiz questions' about the text such as 'Who is Stacey de Lacey?' and 'What is the Hallowed Shallows Seawig Competition?'. This has been followed by opportunities to discuss with a partner and the class, questions relating to the text. These often form discussion about the way the text is written as well as exploring unfamiliar vocabulary. Our lessons have then concluded with written answers which challenge the children to predict what might happen using inference skills, explain their answers and reasoning using evidence from the text. I have been very impressed byy the discussions within class during these lessons. 


As a result of Maple's love for reading 'Oliver and the Seawigs' we decided to design and interpret our own 'Seawig Competition' posters by summarising some of the key features of an event poster. We managed to compose some very creative ideas together. I was so impressed with Maple's enthusiasm, that I promised the class I would 'Tweet' Philip Reeves and Sarah McIntyre our designs to see what they thought. We were fortunate enough to get such a wonderful response...

Reading Corner


Maple have shown great passion for exploring different texts within our reading lessons. It has been exciting to hear each others' thoughts and opinions on a variety of books. Consequently, some of the children were very eager to use their summarising, explaining and evaluating skills to write short book reviews for texts they have read to help other children choose new books. In order to further boost this enthusiasm and a love of reading, I asked the children to provide descriptive words for how they would like their book corner to look. Taking this important feedback on board we managed to design and apply these changes to the area to make it more inviting and exciting with a focus on the 5W's and how. What? Where? Why? Who? When? and How? The idea was to summarise that reading can take you on many adventures and journeys!



Within our writing this term we have focused on interpreting ideas related to William Grill's 'Shackleton's Journey' book which tells of an Antarctic explorer and his crew. Maple have taken role as a crew member and imagined they are taking part on this voyage. Our writing has first consisted of constructing instructions for how to pack a bag for an Antarctic expedition. This included using sequencing words, imperative verbs (bossy verbs) and adjectives to provide really detailed and informative instruction writing. 


Following this, Maple have used drama, freeze framing and hot seating to get into character and imagine they are stranded in the Antarctic. Shackleton's ship the 'Endurance' finally became stuck and began to disintegrate by the harsh icy conditions. The children used their senses to express how they might be feeling in their writing by questioning what they might hear, see, taste, feel and smell. We have used class discussion to collate these ideas which have then been selected and applied in their own writing. This writing took the form of a diary entry before and after the 'Endurance' became stranded. The children explored questions about what they would do next, how the might feel, what do they think their crew members might be feeling and how will the survive? This was followed by understanding the features of a diary entry and practicing this with our own ideas independently. 

Our learning in Term 1


Science - Light and Dark


Maple have continued their enthusiasm for learning about light and dark through their writing and designing skills. The children first planned and used their imagination to write a short story about an Antarctic expedition within 'Writer's Workshop'. We then used these ideas to design shadow puppet characters to be used to present their story to the class using a shadow puppet theatre. 


To link this learning together, Maple have explored how light travels differently through a variety of materials by using comparison and observation skills. We have learnt that opaque, translucent and transparent materials can also affect an objects shadow. To secure this understanding, the children were able to visualise the effect of using the puppets against the baking paper screen and projected light from behind. 

Children In Need 


Maple enjoyed getting active for children in need by challenging themselves to see how many laps of the field they could run. Altogether, including the teachers, we managed to run 215 laps!! We are very impressed with how determined and up for the challenge everyone was. The most amazing part of this activity was how smiley and excited the children were to be outside having fun to support a good cause. Well done Maple Class!! 

Fir Tree Forest Visit Term 2



Science - Light and Dark


Our science work this term has been all to do with light! To kick start our learning journey, Maple had a go at experimenting with how light travels using a light box, glass prism and different coloured filters. We have learnt that light travels in straight lines and what can happen when we try to bend it. We were able to create our own rainbows by breaking up the white light with the prism to aid our understanding of how this is mimicked with raindrops and light with rainbows we see in the sky. 


We have also experimented with mixing different coloured filters whilst predicting and writing up our findings, just like scientists. Maple were very excited to take part in this experiment. It has been fantastic to see such brilliant eagerness to learn.

Fir Tree Garden Visit


The children enjoyed their first visit to the garden. We learnt about what sort of things the school grows, including some of the veg we use in our school meals. It was very exciting to see a variety of jobs we can hep with as a class throughout the year. 

Our First Term

Maple Class have settled into their first term at Fir Tree by creating wonderful work relating to our Take One Picture project. 'Starry Night' by Vincent Van Gogh was our chosen piece and the children have enjoyed experimenting with pastels to recreate their own Starry Night artwork.


Following this, we have started our History Project about The Stone Age. The children enjoyed using their pastel skills to create their own messages through Stone Age cave art.

Fir Tree Forest Visit

This term we also had our first visit to the Fir Tree forest where we met Mrs Thatcher. We spent our time exploring what we could find which included discovering a number of bugs, bones, feathers and plants. Maple class were very excited about their time inside the forest!
We have also had lots of opportunities to use drama to support our writing. This includes getting into character and acting out different stories. Similarly, we have demonstrated our knowledge of geological processes such as how a fossil is formed or the life of historical figures including Mary Anning using drama to help us remember what we have learnt.