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Margaret Wix Primary School

Cardinals (Year 3/4)

Welcome to Cardinals Class page. We are taught by Mr Milbourn and supported by Mrs O'Connor and Mrs Jeffries. 

P.E. lessons will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Children should come into school wearing their PE kit on Tuesday and Thursday. There is no need to bring a change of clothes. Please ensure the children are wearing kit that complies with the school uniform policy in order that they can take part successfully. 


Cardinals Class will visit the school library on Friday afternoons. The children will have an opportunity to change their sharing book and their practise book. Please ensure the children bring both books to school on Fridays. It is expected that children read for a minimum of 10 minutes daily and this should be recorded in their reading record. Please visit the reading star at the top of this page where you find lots of useful information about how you can support you child when reading at home.

Home learning will be sent home on Friday and should be returned by the following Wednesday. As well as reading for 10 minutes daily, we would encourage the children to use TTRockstars. This online tool will help the children to improve their times table knowledge. Please see the Maths star at the top of the page for more information. Home learning will involve some spelling practise and other questions or tasks that are directly related to learning that is taking place in class. Home learning should take no longer than 30 minutes each week. Thank you for your support.

Summer Term 2


As the summer term ends, I am able to reflect on an amazing year with a wonderful class of enthusiastic and inspirational children.  I would like thank you for your support over the term, particularly with the recent Year 4 multiplication assessment. It has been a joy to see the children progress academically and socially throughout the year and they have created a classroom atmosphere full of joy, laughter and togetherness.


This half term, in English, we have produced a play script, poetry and a persuasive letter  The children have worked very hard and produced some amazing pieces that have included complex sentence structures, high-level vocabulary and descriptive and emotive language. I am very proud of how the class have embraced their creative selves when they are writing. Our favourite lessons this half term involved writing and drama, as we wrote a scene, based on Mini Grey’s book ‘The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon’, to perform in play.


In Maths, the children have been working on equations with decimal places to extend their place value knowledge. This unit lead nicely into working out money problems and units of time. We have also touched on mass, capacity and rounding numbers. The children have used a variety of techniques and equipment to help them improve their knowledge and have worked very hard to ensure they are ready to move into their next year group.


In P.E. the children have focused on Rounders, specifically throwing and fielding techniques. They have worked throughout the term to improve their knowledge of tactics within a game and how teamwork can help get the opponent out.  The children have also completed their swimming unit. We have been very impressed with their conduct in the pool and received a great deal of praise from the swimming teachers. It has been amazing to see the progress the children have made and the fun they had together learning an important life skill.


In Geography, we have studied world climates and looked at parts of South America to find out why rainforests are so wet and why deserts are so dry. We also thought about our own climate here in the UK. We considered how climate could affect the animals and plants that live and grow in any place. 


In Science, we have studied the topics of Rocks. We were able to conduct many practical tasks to help our learning including making our own fossils! 


R.E. lessons have provoked amazing discussions about commitment and we have learned a great deal about how Christians show commitment to God when they attend church. The children have excelled in music and their class performance at the whole school assembly was simply brilliant!


I feel extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to watch the children progress and grow over the last year. It has been a genuine pleasure to spend every school day with them, laughing, talking, listening and learning. I know they are on a journey to becoming amazing, well-rounded individuals and I feel honoured to have shared part of that journey with them. I wish everyone a wonderful and joyful summer holiday.



Mr Milbourn

Summer Term 1


We are lucky to be enjoying some warm and sunny weather as the May half term approaches. This has been reflected in the classroom where we see confident, happy children each day. We are please to see continued progress and watch the children grow socially and emotionally. 


In English this term we have completed an explanation text. we were inspired by 'Wallace and Gromit' and created our very own inventions, explaining their use and how they work. This was a great chance to see lots of creative thinking. We have also studied ancient Greek myths in English this half term and completed the unit by writing our very own myth. We have learned how to use similes and metaphors in our work alongside other features such as expanded noun phrases.


In Maths, the children have revisited and expanded their knowledge in multiplication and division as well as place value. We have used formal written methods including long division and recently stared to work on decimal numbers. In Science, we have explored plants. This has been a very interesting topic and given us the opportunity conduct several experiments and visit the outdoors. We have used celery to explore capillary action, dissected plants and been on a seed hunt!


We have completed out History learning for this year by exploring Ancient Egypt. This followed on from our workshop in the spring term and we were able to learn about ancient Egyptian artefacts, cultures and beliefs. In R.E. we have completed our learning of Buddhism for the year. We move onto Christianity after half term. We have considered how our choices affect us and the people around us and why good choices are important to happiness. The children have enjoyed several ukulele lessons this term and will move back to music lessons with Mr Mitchell after the break. 


P.E. lessons have been focused on athletics and we have seen some great performances. We look forward to seeing some of our class represent the school at the district sports in a few weeks time. It has also been a great joy to watch the children progress in their swimming lessons and we look forward to more next half term. Our computing lessons have been great fun. We have been programming shapes. Please encourage the children to keep exploring 'Turtle Academy' online. It's a great tool that they have enjoyed using to enhance their programming skills. 


We have lots to look forward to in the final half term of the year including a trip and Sports day. Let's hope for more sunshine too!



Spring Term 2


As the Easter holidays approach, we can reflect on a busy and exciting spring term. The children have recently completed their spring assessments. They can all be very proud of the progress they are making. We have taken part in several whole activities including Science week, International women’s day and World book day, since the half term break. There has been laughter and learning a plenty.


In English the children have produced a letter and a diary entry based on a wonderful book ‘Azzi in Between’ which tells the story of a young refugee and her journey to a new country due to war. They have also studied an African folk tale and produced an alternative narrative and most recently produced wonderful non-chronological reports. These reports describe our school mascot, the butterfly, and the children have enjoyed learning all about this beautiful creature. Do not forget to ask them for an unusual fact.


In maths, the children have explored perimeter and more recently area, in detail. They have worked hard to understand different ways to recognise shapes and identify efficient ways to calculate the perimeter and area of rectilinear shapes. They have also been working hard to maintain their knowledge of addition, subtraction and multiplication through regular retrieval practise.


This half term has seen us complete our spring topic in science of ‘Animals including Humans’. The children have explored different types of skeletons, muscles and diets. They have thought about the different categories of food, and what a healthy, balanced diet looks like. The practical experiments have been great fun and the children have even designed and built their own bionic hand.


Science week linked perfectly with our geography topic this half term and the children have been very curious about sustainability. They have thought about how we can be more sustainable at home and school, and how we can help to reduce greenhouse gases. Production of energy has been discussed at great length and generated some amazing ideas. Look out for an energy free day in Cardinals class in the summer term.


R.E. lesson have raised some amazing discussions as always. Our focus has been on Christianity this half term but the main theme of our learning has been forgiveness. We have considered why forgiveness is important, when we find it hard to forgive and if it is always possible.


Our computing topic has been about collecting and analysing data. We have found some interesting ways to record and input data and considered why this may be important. In P.E. the children have developed skills in tennis and hockey, trying to understand technique and some tactics to help them score a point.


We have enjoyed a history workshop in the last week of term and now we are looking forward to studying ancient Egypt next term. The children have shown a great deal of commitment to their learning and progress. They deserve a well-earned break. The Cardinals team wish all the children and their families a happy holiday. We look forward to the sun and warmth of the summer term and cannot wait to see the children back in class in April.

Spring Term 1


The first half of the Spring term is short, but it has been full of learning and new experiences in Cardinals Class. We enjoyed welcoming parents into school to sample our marvellous maths and we enjoyed several whole school events such as Safer Internet Day and Children’s Mental Health Week. There are lots more special events to look forward to in the second half of the term. We hope to have visitors into school to present some workshops to the class related to our current history and science units. Keep an eye on your e-mails for details.


In English we have worked hard to develop our writing by adding more detail to sentences. The children have thought about how they can ask questions and use their senses to develop characters and story lines. We have based a newspaper style report on an alternative version of the well-known story of ‘The Three Little Pigs’. We have also written poems using Kennings (a great way to add extra detail) and we are ending the term writing a story based on a television advert. It has been great to see so many children receiving certificates for their achievements in reading. Ten minutes at home, every day makes such a difference. Well done everyone.


In our Maths lessons, we have explored shapes, angles and fractions. The children have worked very hard and made great progress, moving onto some advanced techniques that help them to think mentally about how to add or subtract fractions and identify angles. We are currently developing the formal written method for addition and will explore subtraction after half term. We are now starting to see more of the children practise their times table at home. Keep it up! We welcomed several parents and carers of our year 4 pupils into class to discuss the national multiplication assessment in the summer term. Please do stress the importance of regular exposure to the times tables to your children.


In Science, our topic this half term has been 'Animals including Humans'. We will continue this unit throughout the Spring term. Our focus so far has been the human skeleton and muscles. We have thought about how the skeleton supports and protects our body. We had great fun designing and building our own bionic hands, which helped us learn about joints and movements.


Our R.E. lessons have focused on the teachings of the Buddha and we have asked the question ‘Do his teachings make the world a better place?’ We have read some of the stories of the Buddha and discussed their meaning. We have thought about our future selves and the type of person we would like to become. In PSHE, our topic this half term has been 'Dreams and Goals'. We have explored how some people in the world have difficulties in their everyday lives. We have worked in teams to design and present a garden that meets the needs of an individual.


History lessons this half term have followed on from the Autumn term. This time we have explored the Bronze Age and the Iron Age. We have thought specifically about people in Britain during those eras and how they may have lived. We have also thought about how the lives of British people changed throughout all three periods and why those changes took place. In P.E. the children have had a lot of fun using the gymnastics equipment in the hall and have thought about strength and flexibility. In Dance sessions, the children have created sequences of movements using different parts of their body. Mr Tate, has been very impressed with progress.


We hope you have a restful and enjoyable February half term and we are looking forward to the spring days ahead. The children have been a credit to themselves and we look forward to welcoming everyone back for more fun and learning after the break.

Autumn term 2


Cardinals class have enjoyed a fantastic second half to the autumn term and we have seen motivated, hard working and enthusiastic children throughout. We have already enjoyed some special events including a wonderful day at Capel Manor Gardens, exploring living things and their habitats as well a workshop with a published poet and author. We enjoyed welcoming you into school to sample our wondrous writing and we hope you enjoyed our sharing assembly. There are lots more special events to look forward to in the final week before the Christmas holidays and the children must remember to wear their dancing shoes for the final day of term.

In English we have worked hard to develop our vocabulary this term and focused on finding alternative words with the same meaning to improve our writing. The children have produced, amongst other things, a persuasive speech based on the book 'The Spider and the Fly', a free verse poem and a narrative based on their own research. We also had great fun writing and publishing our own books based on 'Mini Rabbit Not Lost' by John Bond. It has been great to see so many children receiving certificates for their achievements in reading. Ten minutes at home every day makes such a difference. Well done everyone.

Our R.E. lessons have focused on the nativity and we have been thinking about what part is the most significant for Christians. We have explored symbols and how they represent and give meaning to an object, person or place. We have also thought about why Christians give and receive gifts during the Christmas celebrations. In PSHE, our topic this half term has been 'Celebrating Difference'. We have had meaningful discussions about the differences and similarities between, ourselves, our families and communities. We have explored several scenarios that involved bullying and discussed how we as individuals can make ourselves and others feel better if we are anxious or sad. The children have been very respectful and contributed to these lessons with enthusiasm. 


Geography lessons have been great fun this half term as we explored changes o our local environment. We have looked at the changes that have occurred in our local area and beyond as a result of human impact or nature. We even found a very early photo of our school hall. The children have enjoyed thinking about their local area and the changes that have taken place. We spent time looking at how WWI affected St Albans and what times were like for school children during this years. In P.E. the children have worked hard to improve their tag rugby knowledge and skills. We hope to show them off in a whole school event in the new term and our new sports coach, Mr Tate, has been very impressed with progress. 


Everyone on the Cardinals team would like to thank you all for your support through the whole of the Autumn Term. Our classroom is full of joy. We wish everyone a restful break over the Christmas holidays and we hope you are able to spend quality time with those who are the most important to you. We very much look forward to seeing everyone again in 2023!

Maths lessons have seen us explore multiplication, proportion and geometry. We are now starting to introduce a lot more worded problems into our learning and this means the children often have multi-step questions to solve. They have shown how they are able to draw on their previous learning in the first half of the term to select the method that they think best helps them to solve the problem. We have used a range of equipment and visual aids to help us. We are now starting to see more of the children practise their times table at home. Keep it up!


In Science, our topic this half term has been 'Forces and Magnets'. We have been able to conduct a number of experiments in the classroom and this has helped us to think scientifically. The children have recorded their experiments using the scientific model and have enjoyed various activities such as turning a paperclip into a compass and moving a toy car without touching it. We have also been able to think about the work of important scientific figures such as Isaac Newton and John McAdam.

Autumn Term 1


Thank you for all your support during the first half of the Autumn Term. The Year 3 children have settled fantastically into the routines of key stage two and all the children have contributed to a positive learning environment for their new classmates.


In English, we have already based our writing on three different texts. We have worked hard to master techniques to extend sentences, provide detail and use descriptive vocabulary. The children have worked hard to transfer their spoken ideas to the page and we are already seeing progress in handwriting and spelling. We have used a whole class approach to guided reading and the children are analysing their weekly text, retrieving information and learning new vocabulary (and how to expand it) with dictionaries and thesauruses. It has been wonderful to see so many children reading regularly at home and in class. Exposure to different texts and authors will help to expand vocabulary.


In Maths, the children have re-visited place value and started to think about applying different techniques to solve addition and subtraction equations. They have been exposed to a variety of challenges and it is great to see many of them making their own choice about which technique is most helpful to solve a problem. Please keep encouraging the children to use TTRockstars at home. We will be using this tool more in class after half term but times tables knowledge is very important in key stage 2.


In Science, we have been studying the topic of ‘Living things and their habitats’. The children have applied a range of skills including observing, classifying and recording data. We have thought about how animals adapt to their environment and what traits they need, why food chains are important and how humans impact the habitats of other animals. We are very much looking forward to our trip to Capel Manor Gardens after the half term break to explore this topic further.


In History, we have explored how Stone Age humans lived in Britain and how their lives changed throughout that period. The children have enjoyed learning about artefacts from that time and we had a lot of fun inventing Stone Age and modern day anachronisms. In R.E. this term, the children have incorporated learning about Buddhism while asking questions about happiness. We had a wonderful debate about how we might use one million pounds! P.E. lessons have focused on hand skills this term and it has been great to see the children further develop qualities such as teamwork, communication and decision making in these sessions. Quidditch day was definitely the highlight! Our computing lessons have been varied and fun this half term. We have explored the topic of ‘The Internet’, learning about how data moves around the internet and who owns it. We have used laptops to explore web pages within websites and look at common features of websites to help us navigate them.


We hope you have a wonderful half term break and all of the Cardinals team looks forward to welcoming the children back to class on 31st October.