Welcome to Year 4!

Welcome back to school and welcome to Year 4! I hope that you have had a really good holiday and are ready to work hard. All of the children have settled well back into class after the holidays and have started to show what they are capable of already. Keep an eye out on the blog to see what we have been doing this year.

To battle or not?

Mrs Cook set Y4 a challenging piece of homework to complete over the school holidays.

To design a colourful board game based on a Roman Battle. A basic board design was provided to help the children develop their ideas further. The standard of work returned after the school holidays blew Mrs Cook’s socks off! The children have thoroughly immersed themselves in completing this task and deserve a BIG bravo!!

A lot of thought has gone into creating character pieces, questions, clues, paper dices and problems to overcome on route. Players battled around the board, missing turns, going back three spaces, sliding up and down objects or returning to the start if they landed on a particular coloured square.

Today the children presented their board games to the rest of the class explaining what their game was called and how to play it. We then held a vote on whether the rest of the class found their game enticing. The games were called:

Roman numeral snakes and ladders26
Dec’s dangerous dash29
The battle of Roman Road20
Gladiator War30
The Roman street battle29
A very violet battle33
The battle of York28
Swords and Spears – Roman Edition31
The battle of Watling Street23
Back to Boudicca35
The life of Londidium’s24
The clash of the Romans30
From Hadrians Wall to Watling Street28
The Roman Run33
The Battle of Watling St 234
Boudicca’s Rebellion28
Y4 Board Games and points scored from votes for best game based on presentation and playing.

After the show and tell presentation, children partnered up and tested out the games. We held a second vote asking the players to score the game experience out of 10. All the games passed, scoring the maximum points available. See below photos showing Y4 testing out the homemade games:

Art – Collage

At the beginning of the Summer term we started our new art project, learning the skill of collage, pronounced Ko-lahj. Collage is a fine art skill that became popular in the early 1900’s and was popularised by artists such as Pablo Picasso. In the simplest terms collage means pasting or glueing papers onto a surface.
We linked the theme to our Roman topic and chose either apples or pears to create our pieces of work. Did you know that the Romans introduced over 50 new kinds of food and plants to Britain when the settled in AD43.

The first skill to master, was the tearing skill and keeping to the form. Next we introduced tonal changes to practise overlapping.

Using print patterns from milk cartons and food magazines to add texture and depth.
Experimenting with shades using different colours from crisp packets and sweet wrappers.

Our final technique was layering. The process of layering adds texture, subtle colour shifts and tangible depth to the piece of artwork. After experimenting with 3 different types of minimalism art the children created their own backgrounds for their pieces of art: horizontal strips, bright colours with no lyrical or mathematical composition and geometric random quadrilateral black tiles. The overall results were very impressive.

Horizontal and geometric backgrounds showcasing apples and pears.

Science investigation: Ways to insulate sound

First we discovered how fast sound travels through a solid. Working in partners, children took it in turns to listen to a soft tapping sound of a glue stick, travelling through a piece of wood. Children noted how the sound changed when they placed their heads onto the table top. We repeated a similar test using our index fingers to closer to our ears. We discussed how sometimes we needed to shield our ears from excessive noises such as passing traffic or noisy machinery. The main experiment was to workout how to muffle sound. We set up a fair test and played ‘Happy’ by Pharrell Williams at the same volume for 10 seconds each time and decided to experiment with 4 materials.

First we all made a predication of how our different materials would muffle sound. Initially we experimented using our hands. Then using biodegradable paper cups as ear muffs we tested cotton wool, sponge and shredded paper. The results showed that hands worked best as the seal around the ears was better than the cups. Although the results were varied shredded paper proved to be the worst both in insulator and mess! Sponge was the best sound proofing material. Science bit: A sponge has bigger gaps of air which makes it harder for the sound’s energy to pass through the material thus slowing down the sound.

Cotton wool test.
Shredded paper test
Sponge test

Roman Topic Update

At the beginning of the Summer term the class started work on their Roman topic. The first task was to place Ancient Rome on a timeline starting from 753BC to AD410. Working together the class reorganised the mixed-up dates and put them in descending and ascending order (see photo). We then took a closer look at a famous Roman Emperor – Gaius Julius Caesar and wrote a mini biography. Did you know he was the first Roman Emperor to wear purple? Since then, the colour purple is often used for Royal occasions. In week 2 the class used their geography skills to locate modern day countries previously conquered by the Romans. The children discovered how the current capital city of Rome grew near the river Tiber, and how the Roman civilisation spread across Europe until it reached Britannia, which was conquered in AD43 (see map photos). In week 3 we looked at why Britain was invaded for its raw materials and how the Roman army were successful. We practised a Testudo formation in the playground with our Scutum’s (roman shields) – see photo. In week 4 we investigated how the Romans influenced how we live our lives today. Did you know they invented fast food – aka the Burger. With 10,000 soldiers in Britain, convenient food on the go was essential. In week 5 the children became archaeologists and discovered how we know about the Romans existence today. They created a fact file of historical places and learnt about a recent discovery of a Roman villa located in Scarborough just last month. Before the Spring bank break Y4 made their own Roman numeral tablets, carving their age into soap. A skilled activity which they all achieved well. (see photos).

Practising the Roman Testudo Formation
Carving Latin numerals into a soap tablet.

Spectacular Skipping

Year four enjoyed an amazing hour of super skipping tuition when Dan came in to deliver his skipping workshop.

We practised skills from beginners – using ‘the penguin’ stance, to intermediate with ‘double skipping’ to advanced, with tricks like, ‘crossover’ and ‘arm wrap’.

It was great fun and even the teachers joined in. Mr Brocksom looked like a proper expert, but poor Mrs Ellis needed to be sent to the back of the classroom!

Pitch Experiment

Today, we completed a scientific experiment all about pitch. We cut different lengths of straws and investigated the pitch that was created. It was really fun we learnt a lot about this area of sound.

Number Day

On Friday 7th May, our children were able to complete a really fun day based all around numbers. They were able to come to school in clothes that were number related, they were able to complete loads of fun activities relating to Maths and we even raised a large amount of money (£300). We completed an enjoyable Buddy challenge where there were prizes given out to the winners and there was also time to go outside to complete some Maths work on the field. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the day and I am so proud of them for raising so much money. Well done everyone!

So Far So Good!

We have just got to the first break of the day and so far, so good. The children have created their base layers for the mask using Papier-mâché layering technique. We had to make sure that they were double and even triple layered to ensure that they would be stable enough to hold the features. We also had to make sure that there were no gaps. We have just started the facial features which we have practised twice already. We are going to learn from our mistakes and ensure that they are thick enough and that we don’t rush.

Christmas Dinner and Dancing

Today, we celebrated our Christmas dinner in the most unconventional approach I have seen in my time at Kexborough Primary School. This is understandable but it did not stop us from having a fantastic time as you can see by the pictures below.