We always try to keep you informed about our learning and what’s going on in school by sending home our topic webs, curriculum plans, information letters and texts, but if you’d like a reminder of what’s being taught each half term here’s our current Curriculum Plans.
In RE this half term the children have been learning about the Christian celebration of Easter. They have talked about why Christians celebrate Easter and discussed how their own families or people they know celebrate. The children talked about Easter taking place on a Sunday and that Christians go to church on a Sunday. The children also know that Easter celebrates the death and coming to life again of Jesus and have talked about how some people give chocolate eggs as a gift on Easter Sunday.
Matthew said, “He was in the cave and they put the big rock in front of it. He rose from the dead.” Thomas drew a picture and said, “My family doing an Easter egg hunt.”
This term Year 1 have looked at the Jewish festival of Purim and The Christian celebration of Easter.
We found out about how Jewish people celebrate Purim by wearing special clothes, eating sweet treats and taking presents to friends. We listened to the story of Queen Esther and how she saved the Jewish people and then made puppets of the characters in the story and had a go at acting out and retelling the story.
Some children also made Groggers which are used during the retelling of the story to make lots of noise whenever the name Haman is heard.
When learning about the Christian celebration of Easter we found out about why the cross is an important symbol to Christians and shared the story of Easter and learnt that it is sad but has a happy ending. The children also watched a film about how Christians celebrate and made their own Easter cards.
In Year 2, the children have been learning about the Jewish celebration of Shabbat. The children were really lucky to receive a special video from some previous visitors to our school who shared how they celebrate Shabbat. They were then given the opportunity to think about how they spend their time relaxing, and what they do with their families at the weekend.
The children have also thought about the Christian celebration of Easter and have been part of retelling the story as well as making Easter cards for our local community.
Children talk about their past experiences, including days out with their family and special times such as birthdays. They find out about the past and how life has changed from a variety of sources, including photographs, objects and stories.
During the Spring term, the children learnt about dinosaurs. They found out lots of facts about dinosaurs using a variety of resources.
Year one studied the topic of ‘Our Planet and Beyond.’ The children learnt about the history of space travel including learning about the race to space and the astronauts Neil Armstrong, Yuri Gagarin. They have been introduced to time lines for the events of space travel.
During the topic of ‘Air, Land and Sea’ the children have learnt about Lord Admiral Nelson. They found out about important dates in his life and could use prior knowledge of how a timeline works to create their own timeline for Lord Admiral Nelson. Some of the children were able to expand on the information and wrote additional facts for each date.
As part of their topic on animals, the children have explored the animals living in a variety of environments including the seashore, farm and jungle. Activities included using the tuff tray and books.
The children have used our outside area to find out about the plants and animals living in our locality. We talked about the birds living around us, during an online assembly linked to the RSPB Big Bird Watch.
In Year 1 the children have been Weather Watchers and have been learning all about types of weather and climate in different parts of the world. They created their own weather forecast on a map of the UK. They have learnt how a tornado works and listened to a BBC weather forecaster telling them all about his job. Year one explored places using Google maps. The children used their prior learning about maps to create their own maps with a key and symbols.
Year two have been learning to locate places on globes and maps, progressing with their map work skills from year one. They have been naming and locating the world’s seven continents and the oceans. The children selected a country and found out additional information about it including key landmarks, weather and flags. They looked at, and discussed a selection of objects from around the world and matched these up to the correct continent on a map.
Across the year groups, the children have been asking a “Big Question” about a particular faith or world view and learning more about it to answer their question.
This term, Year 3 have explored the beliefs and practices of Hinduism and have learnt about some of the gods and deities and what they mean to Hindus. We also learnt about some of the Hindu festivals. In the second half of term, our topic has been how Christians worship. We have learnt about the different types of worship in church such as singing, praying and reading the Bible. We have studied Christian baptism and Christian weddings and how these help people feel part of the Christian community. We have learnt about the Salvation Army and how they put their faith into practice in the community and we have discovered how Christians celebrate Easter around the world.
This half term we have been looking at Islam and whether we believe being happy is the greatest purpose in life for a Muslim. The children have had to consider the difference between being happy and happiness. We have been able to showcase what we have already learnt in Autumn term about Islam and have enjoyed consolidating our learning to help us to answer the big question.”
In Spring 1, our learning focused around the question ‘how do Sikhs make sense of the world?’ We learned about Guru Nanak and some of his life stories. We also learned about the 10 Gurus and the importance of the Guru Granth Sahib.
In Spring 2, we have been learning about Judaism. WE have looked at synagogues and the Torah, even making our own scrolls. We have also looked at the significance of Shabbat and Yom Kippur. We were interested to find out about Kashrut and the strict rules that Jewish people follow around food and we also created art around their symbolism.
Our Big Question in the first half of this term was: Is the biblical version of creation compatible with the scientific view of creation? We read the bible story of the creation of the world and then learnt about the scientific theories such as The Big Bang and Evolution? After some discussion and more investigation, we decided that some Christians only believe in the biblical version, but that some Christians also believe that the story in Genesis is more symbolic and can be compatible with some scientific theories too. All Christians believe that God created the world and that humans should look after it.
During spring term 2 we have been learning about how Christians celebrate Easter and the difference the resurrection of Jesus makes to Christians. We have watched videos about how Easter is celebrated in different churches and learnt what the concepts of hope; salvation; resurrection; incarnation and sacrifice mean within the context of Christianity using art to stimulate our ideas.
This half term we have studied the author and artist Jeannie Baker and her unique collage representations of landscapes. We particularly focussed on her book, ‘The Window’ as we have spent so much time looking out of our windows at home and then the children created their own collage view ‘from their own window at home’. We discussed rural landscapes and cityscapes and how colour was affected by the change in these areas.
While the majority of the school were working remotely, Year 4 children worked on a project to create an African sunset picture. The first task was to follow step-by-step instructions to sketch a range of African animals. Next, the children created an African sunset using a medium of their choice. On top of this sunset, the children painted or drew on to black paper the outline of animals they had learnt to sketch. The results were spectacular!
Once the children had returned to school, we began our second project of the Spring term which linked to studying Islam in R.E. After researching Islamic geometric patterns and Arabic writing, the children designed and made a print tile using card and string. Once dry, the children applied paint to their paint tile to create a whole page of prints. Take a look below!
This half term we have introduced a new collage topic, which we linked to our history studies of the Mayans. We started by making a mood board after looking at various Mayan landscape scenes.
We thought about mood, emotions and textures represented in these scenes. Next, we made a sketch of the scene we wanted to create and added vocabulary to describe what we wanted our collage to look like. Then we carefully selected papers, card, fabric etc to complete our scenes which are now proudly on display in the corridor.
The children in Year 6 have enjoyed sketching illustrations for their ‘Tyger’ poems. They have also successfully finished off their ‘Amazing Americas’ geography topic by looking at some American artists. We started by learning about Ansel Adams, considered one of the greatest American photographers. We looked at his black and white photos, including the Yosemite National Park in California and were inspired to create our own black and white collages using a range of landscape images.
We have also studied a painting by Albert Bierstadt, a German Artist who moved to New York when he was 2 years old. Using the painting ‘Wind River Country’ (in the Rocky Mountains) we have considered form, process and mood.
The children developed their sketching skills to create perspective using lines and overlapping shapes to create their own Rocky Mountain sketches.
Geography and computing
This half term Year 3 have investigated the local area by researching information about Dereham using search engines on the internet. We have also explored symbols used in a key on a map to represent important human and physical features and found such features on a map of our local area. We then presented the information we wished to share about Dereham in a Microsoft Powerpoint presentation created in our pairs.
In the Spring term, while the children were taking part in remote lessons, the focus for learning was E-safety. The children began by evaluating websites then they considered which aspects of internet safety were the most important. To round off the topic, the children could choose to design a poster or leaflet for someone younger than themselves to display all their new E-safety knowledge.
Our latest series of lessons have involved using 2DIY3D on purple Mash, a program which enables the children to create their own game. The activities included creating 2 levels of a game, creating hazards, designing the features of the game and finally writing a set of instructions for others to play the game
We have enjoyed learning about spreadsheets, especially how to use formulas. We have been using the spreadsheets to check some calculations which we had also done mentally.
In Spring 2, the focus has been staying safe online. Specifically, the children have been learning about copyright and plagiarism as well as looking at fake websites and designing their own!
During the Spring Term Year 6 have been learning about Spread sheets. The children learnt how to create a spreadsheet for an event and put in data into it. The children manage to do this at home as part of their online learning. This half term we are doing blogging which is proving very enjoyable, this is being done on Purple Mash.
The children in year 3 have been working on coding, providing specific and detailed instructions to make a car move. We used Purple Mash to complete the tasks and after a lot of perseverance we successfully made our vehicles do what was expected of them.
In the Autumn term, the children in year 4 began their computing lessons by taking part in Dance Mat Typing. The aim of this programme was to improve and develop their keyboard typing skills.
After this, the children had great fun learning to send and receive emails to and from each other. These lessons taught the children how to include an email address, how to add a subject and an attachment. Later in the term, the children enjoyed a series of lessons using Scratch. This enabled the children to create programs by dragging blocks of instructions to make animations move. The children were able to think creatively and reason systematically.
The children in year 5 were busy in the Autumn term becoming more familiar with using their blogging page. They have loved using this as a way of communicating with each other both in class and when at home. The children can like posts as well as leave comments. They love to see how many people have gone onto the blog and from where about in the world. Click on the links below to have a look!
The children also created their own stop motion films! Some chose to include their Viking ships that they had recently created in DT. They learned out to create a story using photos and thought carefully about how to show if a character is moving quickly or slowly.
This term we have been working on coding, giving clear instructions, known as algorithms. We used Purple Mash to complete set activities to practise using the algorithms and using different variables to complete different tasks. This culminated in the children creating their own games involving the variables such as timers and directions through Purple Mash. We then looked at and focused on Online Safety and how to keep others and ourselves safe online.
Whilst learning at home and at school this term, there has still been the chance for the children to design and create.
In Reception, the children have continued developing their creative skills and fine motor abilities. They have been able to explore using different materials to build and create with, linking to their fantasy and animals topic. Children have designed with a purpose and enjoyed sharing their creations online with everyone to receive compliments and ask questions. This is the start of how Reception children begin to evaluate what themselves and others have done, and we were able to continue this virtually this term.
In Year 1 the children discussed traveling around on the moon in a moon buggy. They looked at some photos of moon buggies and talked about what features a moon buggy would need such as wheels and a steering wheel. The children then worked hard as they designed and made their own moon buggies and tested them in motion.
In Year 2 the children talked about different ways of travel. The children learnt about parachutes and designed their own. They thought about what materials would be best to use and how to ensure their parachute would fly and support a toy. The children chose their own materials to make their parachutes and tested them to see if their design and build had been successful. They then evaluated their parachutes and thought about what they would do differently next time.
Although we have all been learning at home, there has still been lots of Art happening to celebrate!
This term we have been getting busy throughout the year groups! Reception have been looking at the themes fantasy and animals and been getting creative exploring these. They have explored their creative freedom and practised their painting and drawing skills.
In year 1 the children have explored different ways of creating pieces of artwork at home. They have looked at creating self-portraits, improving their observational drawing skills and using art to express themselves and share what they like!
In year 2, the children have been creating artwork ready inspired by other artists. They have studied the work of Picasso and used the collage and drawing technique to create their own faces, recreated artwork of a water location inspired by the artist Monet, and enhanced their observational techniques by practising self-portraits.
COVID 19 has had a massive impact on Music – Imagine Primary School without singing! It has also meant a temporary halt to our Yr 4 WCIT of Steel Pan, Year 6 Samba and use of recorders in all classes.
On a brighter and more positive note, we now have a beautiful set of yellow ukuleles and have introduced whole class ukulele lessons throughout the year for Year 3 children. Charanga (the online Music resource we use for some of our lessons) has been specially adapted to be COVID safe with more glockenspiel use and sign language versions of songs being taught!
During lockdown we have made use of Oak Academy Music lessons when the majority of children have been learning at home. These are really good fun (Year 3 went ‘cup song’ crazy and have loved the body percussion sessions) and also incorporate lots of simple music theory continuing the skills taught in our usual curriculum.
‘Music from Around the World’ assemblies have been created to be shared in class giving children a chance to experience music from a range of cultures, eras and genres.
World book day this year was a bit different but we all had a really good time both at home and in school.
There were more resources online this year so that everyone could access the resources.
Everyone was able to access the live assemblies, where we heard from all the authors of the £1 books. This introduced the children to a whole range of authors and illustrators that were new to many of them. The themes of the books were:
These sessions really inspired the children, they taught us all a lot about how authors and illustrators gain their ideas.
In all year groups we completed lessons in class and online learning, linked to World Book Day. All year groups started our world book day with an assembly. We then gave a presentation of the Masked Reader videos from across the Federation, guessing which teacher was reading an extract from their favourite books! This caused much hilarity, trying to work out the voices of the readers and seeing the creative masks and disguises the teachers had used.
The children in Reception have been celebrating World Book Day by taking part in lots of animal themed activities.
Over the week, they have been listening to stories read by staff such as ‘The Little Monkey’ and ‘Blown Away.’ On Friday, the children took part in a drawing assembly with the author and illustrator Rob Biddulph to learn how to draw a penguin and a kite.
The children have also been enjoying watching Toftwood’s, ‘The Masked Reader’ and have had fun trying to guess who the staff members are before they are revealed! Some children have also had a go at filming their own version and these have been shared on the live Teams lessons for their friends to guess.
Alongside the Book Week activities, the children have been following craft tutorials recorded by Mrs Ratcliffe, Mrs Brown and Mrs Partridge. They have been busy making chain snakes, lion masks, frog puppets, handprint elephants and sloths!
For world book day celebrations in year 1, the children enjoyed watching the masked reader that the teachers had recorded. They loved using the clues to have a guess at who was reading the story and were really tricked by some of the masks.
We read the story ‘Man on the Moon’ which linked with our topic of ‘Our Planet and Beyond’. As we had been finding out about space explorers the children thought about what they would take with them if they could go into space. We then looked at part of Tim Peake’s diary from his space trip in 2015/16 and the children had a go at writing their own entry to a space diary. The children also thought of questions that they would like to ask Tim Peake if they could.
The children in year 2 celebrated World Book Day by watching some amazing authors talk about how they create and write their books. One author was Serena Patel, author of Anisha the Accidental Detective. Year 2 have now started reading this as their class reading book and are really enjoying it!
The children were mesmerised by the poet Michael Rosen reading his famous poem of chocolate cake. They were all giggling at the sound effects that he was making and the repetitive language he used when reading his poems aloud. As part of an assembly, they did a draw-a-long with the author and illustrator Rob Biddulph for the World Book Day mascot!
World book day was unusual this year as our lessons took place virtually but year 3 thoroughly enjoyed it nonetheless. The children reported that their favourite activities were the draw along sessions provided by the Bournville Book fest website; in these we learnt how illustrators read the descriptions of the author to create their interpretations of the characters. We drew Dobbie with Johnny Duddle, Doris from the ‘Nothing to see here hotel’ series with Steven Lenton and Toothless with Cressida Cowell ( we were very impressed at the fact that, not only is she the author and illustrator of her stories, but can also teach how to speak Dragonese).
The children were given some free time to create a ‘hilarious story’ using a family anecdote after we learnt that Serena Patel based her series of books on funny things that happened with her family. The children all had a giggle at some of the stories their friends were going to use from runaway lobsters to pretend spiders to leaky loos!
Lastly, the children listened to author Tom Palmer talk about how he turned his love of football into a series of books. He talked about using knowledge from an area of interest/passion to inform writing and the children used his advice to write a short story about something they were passionate about. At the end of the day, the children read their stories aloud and we learnt lots about what things the children in our classes are passionate about and spend their spare time doing!
Year 4 children created their own questions (with answers) for a World Book Day quiz that we held across the year groups later on in the week. We were really impressed with the diverse questions and the well-chosen texts that meant nearly everyone had read them and we were enthusiastic participants in the quiz!
Year 4 also looked at the World Book Day £1.00 book: “Little Badman and the Radioactive Samosa” by Humza Arshad and Henry White. We listened to their video and then read Chapter One of the book.
The children were asked to think about a favourite food or drink that when they ate it would give them superpowers – just like the character in the book: Humza.
The children were very enthusiastic with their task and enjoyed it immensely.
In year 5 the children got inspriation from the Scholastic authors who led various live lessons. The childen had inspiration from such authors as Simon James Green, Kimberley Pauley, Lisa Thompson , Helen Rutter and Vashni Handy
This gave the children inspiration to then go off and wrtie their own stories, which many are still continuting past book day; a truly inspiring day for all.
Lastly in year 6 the children did a series of workshops, run again by published authors, many of whom are familiar to them from Reading Gladiators and from them visiting our school.
They learnt how authors create imaginary worlds (our writing unit at the moment) finding inspration and how to create worlds. Then we learnt about how to create stories from our pictures. This day we have followed this up in class, as they realise that many authors write from what they know, using names, places and people that they are familiar with.
Overall the childen have been inpsired to write their own stories. There are many new authors now emerging, as many teachers are sharing new stories the children have been writing at home.
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