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Margaret Wix Primary School

Excellence, Creativity, Individuality!

Monarchs (Year 6)

Welcome to Year 6

 

Our class is called Monarchs. We are taught by Miss Abbott and supported by Mrs Green.

 

PE

Monarchs have PE lessons on Tuesdays. They are taught by PE specialist teachers from ASL Education as well as Miss Abbott. Children will need to wear their PE kit to school on Tuesdays and will remain in it all day. On Thursdays, Monarchs will be going swimming in the Autumn term. Please ensure that they have the correct kit so that they can successfully participate. 

 

Library

Children in Monarchs will have the opportunity to visit the school library every Thursday. They will be able to choose a book to take home to read. If they need to change a book, please ensure that they have it in school on a Thursday.

 

Home Learning

Reading - Children are expected to read for at least ten minutes every day and should record this in their reading record. Your child's reading record must be handed in every Thursday. In year 6, children are not expected to always read to an adult, however a parent/carer will need to sign their reading record to show that they have read at home. We hope to see lots of children becoming Reading Ambassadors this year! 

 

Times Tables - Times tables (and the associated division facts) are a vital part of mathematical knowledge and understanding. It is crucial that your child practises these skills at home by logging onto the Times Table Rockstars website daily, for at least ten minutes.

 

English and maths - Children have three short English and three short maths tasks to complete each week. These should be completed in their home learning books. Home learning is set every Friday and should be handed in the following Wednesday.

 

Spelling - In school, we will teach the children spelling patterns and rules. At home, we would like the focus to be on learning and practising the Year 5 and 6 statutory spellings (you can find these by clicking on the spelling star at the top of this page and a few each week are included in your child's home learning book)

This week's (Friday 27th January) home learning is...

English CGP book - Pages 10 and 11 (structure)
Maths CGP book - Pages 50 and 51 (finding missing numbers)

Autumn 2 Update (December 2022)

At Margaret Wix, we are proud of the varied opportunities afforded to our pupils and in the second half of the autumn term, the children have been able to develop various key life skills, including cooking and cycling, alongside all of the learning that has taken place in the classroom. Monarchs have approached tasks with ever-increasing confidence and have demonstrated our learning powers and values throughout. I am finishing the term feeling very proud of all that we have accomplished!

 

In English, this half term, we have explored poetry, narratives and persuasive writing. During the week of Armistice Day, we spent time reading a poignant story called 'Where the Poppies Now Grow'. This gave us ideas for our own writing, including descriptive and emotive language. Cinquain poems, which we were focused on, have a specific syllable structure so we then spent time ensuring that each line of our poems were the correct length. We shared some of our completed work with the rest of the school in our Remembrance Day assembly. A favourite series of books with many of the children in Monarchs is the Harry Potter series. Of course, they are a favourite of mine too so we just had to use the texts in some of our English lessons this term. Over a couple of weeks, we wrote descriptively in role as various characters, acted out the dramatic troll scene, and even wrote a new chapter entitled 'The Malfunctioning Typewriter' in which Harry got his own back on his Uncle after being treated horribly yet again. Finally, we have taken on the challenge of writing persuasively. First, we read a book called 'The Spider and the Fly' in which a naive spider is lured into a trap by a cunning spider. We wrote to other insects trying to persuade them not to fall for his lies. After this, we linked our English with our geography topic on climate change and wrote to the Prime Minister to try to convince him to take further action to help stop global warming. It was brilliant to see the children use the facts they had learned during their geography lessons in their letters, in order to support their persuasive arguments. I think Rishi Sunak is going to find it difficult to ignore Monarchs as they very successfully used emotive language, rhetorical questions and flattery in their very formal letters to him!

 

Maths this half term, has seen Monarchs tackle fractions, decimals and percentages. We've spent a lot of time learning how to calculate each of these separately, but have also had to try to understand how they are all linked and master converting between them. It has required a lot of self-belief and resilience but we have certainly made great strides. As we know that these are three areas of mathematics frequently tested in SATs, in addition to being valuable to understand for real-life contexts such as shopping, we will definitely be revisiting this learning again! In recent weeks, we have explored properties of 2D shapes, learned how to calculate area and solved problems involving the diameter and radius of circles. We've been very busy!

 

We have loved being super scientists this half term, conducting a variety of investigations related to our topic: forces. We've pushed and pulled objects to test friction, made parachutes to test air resistance, crafted boats to test water resistance and created pendulums to investigate gravity. This hands-on way of learning has really helped us to develop a good understanding of quite abstract concepts.

 

Geography, as mentioned, has involved us learning about climate change and its impact on our planet. The children have been extremely interested and shocked to learn that heatwaves, bushfires, floods, droughts, polar regions melting and sea levels rising are all results of the way we are mistreating our world. They have drawn upon skills from other areas of the curriculum in these lessons, creating graphs, designing flood defences and more. There are many strong opinions regarding what we should now do as a school to help reduce the impact of global warming; keep your eyes peeled for an update from our Environment Minister in the new year!

 

In RE, we have been learning about how Christians celebrate Christmas and have been asking if their traditions help them to understand who Jesus was and why he was born. We were interested to find out how a number of Christmas traditions may have originated as religious ways of celebrating at this time of year, but now are enjoyed by many people in a secular way. We created questionnaires to find out if everyone in our class celebrates Christmas and if so how - we heard about lots of lovely family traditions that some children enjoy and are very much looking forward to over the coming weeks. It was also wonderful for children from different faiths to share knowledge of celebrations they partake in and explain how they are similar and different to Christmas celebrations.

 

We have some future computing experts in Monarchs class, I am sure! I have been so impressed with the children's work this half term: they have designed and created their very own websites! Each child chose a subject to create a site about and then they have worked hard to add everything from images and texts to hyperlinks in order to make their websites fully functional. It's been brilliant to see how excited they have been each week to get the laptops out and enjoy developing these skills.

 

Our latest PSHE unit of work was titled, 'Celebrating Differences' and we have certainly done that in Monarchs class! We have discussed what makes each of us special and unique, and thought about how these things are positives and shouldn't be used to judge or discriminate against people. The mature discussion that takes place in our classroom every Friday in our PSHE lessons is wonderful and I feel privileged to be involved. I can really see the children taking the time to think carefully before they share ideas and they are all showing great respect when faced with differing opinions.

 

As the term drew to a close, we enjoyed getting creative and undertaking a collage project based on the work of Gustav Klimt. We first looked at some of his artwork and noticed how he often layered linear patterns over geometric shapes. After taking inspiration from his paintings, we had a go at creating some of our own. First we created collaged backgrounds out of various colours of tissue paper cut into a variety of shapes. Then, we added our Klimt-inspired patterns over the top. We finished with a few metallic details, which is something Klimt was known for doing in his artwork too. You can see our masterpieces on display in our classroom.

 

DT lessons have involved cooking and electronics this half term but, thankfully, not at the same time! Monarchs have been lucky to have cookery lessons with HCL and enjoyed making a range of foods including fajita wraps and sweet breads. As Christmas draws nearer, we are looking forward to making some delicious gingerbread reindeer too! Our electronics project involved us designing and creating buzzer games. Although putting the circuits together was challenging, we had a number of successes and the children enjoyed testing how steady their hands were while playing these classic games.

 

Mr Tate has been extremely impressed with Monarchs during PE lesson this half term. They have enjoyed developing their tag rugby skills and he has noticed a real improvement in their skills, stamina, teamwork and sportsmanship as the half term has progressed. In the second PE session of each week, Monarchs have been honing their swimming skills. This culminated with the sponsored swimming session. The children tried extremely hard to swim as many widths as possible in order to raise money for our class - thank you to those of you who have already sent the sponsorship money in. If you are yet to, please do so before the end of term.

 

We have begun French lessons this half term and are gradually getting to grips with a new language. Our focus has been on our school: we've learned how to name different places in and around our school in French as well as explain what subjects we learn at school. Tackling a new language is always challenging, but I've been impressed with how willing the children have been to have a go! 

 

We have crammed a lot into a busy half term - as well as all the learning taking place in class, we've enjoyed taking part in the Christmas music concert, watching the pantomime and nativity, welcoming parents into our classroom for Wondrous Writing Week, participating in Anti-Bullying Week and Just Talk Week, working with visitors from the NSPCC and much more! The children have certainly earned a rest over the next couple of weeks.
 

I wish those of you who celebrate, a very merry Christmas, and look forward to seeing all of your children again in the new year, feeling refreshed and ready to learn again!

 

Thank you for your continued support,

Miss Abbott smiley

 

Autumn 1 Update (October 2022)

What a brilliant first half term we have had in Monarchs! The children have quickly settled into school routines and shown me what enthusiastic learners they can be. They've risen to the challenge of being top of the school and are striving to always demonstrate our learning powers and values. It was fantastic to see democracy in action as we voted for our House Captains, elected our Pupil Parliament members and chose our charity committee members - the children in these roles are already working hard, organising playtime equipment, leading school tours, sharing their ideas with Mrs Gibbs and more. I can't wait to see their impact throughout the year.

 

In the classroom, the children have been working extremely hard. We have focused on four different genres of writing this half term: reports based on the picture book 'Zeraffa Giraffa', diaries written in role as 'Hermelin the detective mouse', poetry written with clips from David Attenborough's documentaries as inspiration, and finally explanations and survival guides in the style of a wonderful text called 'How to be a world explorer'. Throughout, we have been concentrating on ensuring that every sentence makes sense and is correctly punctuated as well as trying to widen our vocabularies and make use of ambitious words and phrases. Our most recent unit of writing has been particularly enjoyable, with the children working in small groups to make their very own explorer's guidebooks. They have done everything from designing the front cover and illustrating each page, to providing detailed instructions for how to survive in treacherous conditions, and even writing the blurb. These guides are going to look fantastic in our library - I'm sure the rest of the school will love reading our published books.

 

Maths this half term has predominantly focused on number and place value. This has involved ensuring that we understand the value of every digit in numbers up to ten million. We have been ordering and comparing numbers, rounding them, multiplying and dividing them by 10, 100 and 1000, and much more! Towards the end of this half term, we revised properties of number, in particular revisiting factors and multiples from learning in previous years. Understanding of this is particularly important as we move onto learning about fractions. I've been pleased to see many children practising their times tables regularly at home - this also helps to ensure that they can access our learning in class and feel confident to tackle other areas of maths. Keep it up!

 

We have been immersed in our Earth and space topic this half term; the children have loved it! We've seen how ideas about the solar system have changed over time and we couldn't believe that people once thought the Earth was flat! We've found out a whole host of facts about the different planets including the order in which they are from the sun. Making our own models of the solar system helped us to understand how all the planets orbit. We enjoyed finding out about the Apollo II moon landing and became journalists from the 1960s, writing our own news reports about the events that were watched by millions globally. Finally, we investigated the phases of the moon, using Oreo biscuits to model the changing visual that we see from Earth - great fun and tasty too!

 

Our ancient Egypt topic has been fascinating! The children have loved finding out about the gruesome mummification techniques, designing and making canopic jars, learning about the interesting hierarchy of ancient Egyptian society, and discovering the importance of the River Nile. The topic has really sparked our curiosity for history and we have asked lots of intriguing questions and had many interesting discussions throughout this unit of work.

 

In RE, this half term, we have been learning about the five pillars of Islam and how Muslims show commitment to God. There are a number of children in class who have been able to act as experts, sharing their own knowledge and experiences with the class. Others have considerately and thoughtfully asked questions to deepen their own understanding of how people show commitment in different ways to themselves. We finished by evaluating whether we believed there to be a 'best' way to show our commitment to something and concluded that time and effort were key. We thought about things that we were committed to, such as learning to play an instrument or attending a club, and how we try to remain committed even when faced with challenges.

 

In computing, we have been learning about systems and networks, with a focus on communication and collaboration. We learned how data is sent from one computer to another using IP addresses and data packets. We discussed methods of online communication, such as email, social media, video sharing sites, instant messaging, video calls, and more. We thought about the benefits and drawbacks of each method including how private they were and whether they had age restrictions. Next, we used one method of communication, Microsoft Teams, to work on a collaborative project with people who were sitting on opposite sides of the room to us. We linked this learning to science and made fact files about planets with our group members, sharing our ideas and working online only. 

 

This half term's PSHE unit was titled 'Being Me in My World' and involved us thinking about our goals for this year as well as universal rights of children and how our behaviour and choices can impact others. We compared things we want with things we need and thought about how there are many people, less fortunate than ourselves, whose needs are not met at all. Black History month, in October, involved us finding out about the lesser-told black history of Britain. We looked a timeline and learned about a number of inspirational black Britons such as Lilian Bader and Paul Stephenson. October also included World Mental Health Day. We spent time reflecting on the little things that we can do to improve our wellbeing each day and also wrote positive affirmation cards that made us feel good.

 

Our PE lessons have included netball and swimming this half term. I have heard lots of great things about the successes in swimming, with children showing great self-belief, swimming further and developing stronger strokes. Netball lessons have included lots of skills development. We've learned different types of passes, developed our shooting technique and learned some of the key rules, such as the three second rule. We enjoyed a mini tournament in which we put all our skills into practice and demonstrated how well we can work together in teams.

 

In art, we've completed a unit of work on portraits. We learned about accurate proportions, different grades of pencil and how they can all be used to created different effects, and how colour can be used to convey emotion. We looked at a number of famous portrait artists, including Picasso and Frida Khalo, and compared their differing styles of artwork. I been so impressed with the artistic talent in Monarchs and our final pieces of work showed great care and attention to detail; the children drew and painted their own portraits that included carefully chosen symbolic details. We definitely have lots of future artists in our class!

 

Our learning has extended beyond the classroom this half term with trips to Crucial Crew and the Science Museum. We enjoyed learning about hazards and finding out how to keep ourselves and others safe on our Crucial Crew visit. Exploring the Wonderlab and Space Gallery at the Science Museum was a fantastic way to end our science topic - the children loved being able to see some out-of-this-world artefacts, such as satellites, as well as have a go at a variety of hands-on activities that brought their learning to life.

 

It was a pleasure to meet many of you at parent consultations this week. Many of the documents referred to, such as reading lists and questions, and grammar glossaries, can be found by clicking on the relevant star at the top of this page. Thank you for your support this half term - together we can help your children to reach their full potential. 

 

Finally, what a jam-packed half term it has been; I hope the children enjoy a well-earned break next week and I look forward to seeing them all again on Monday 31st October.

 

Kind regards,

Miss Abbott

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