Welcome to Year 4
An overview of Year 4’s curriculum:
To find out more about Year 4’s curriculum, please click on the current newsletter below or speak to your child’s class teacher / Year Leader (Mr Dilkes).
Year 4 - Latest News
Week ending 16th November 2018
On Monday 12th November year 4 took part in the whole school Parliament day.
The children learnt about democracy in the UK, including how general elections work and how governments are formed. Classes conducted debates where children practised forming and justifying their opinions and listening to others.
Some classes were able to watch part of a live debate in the House of Commons where the education minister was answering questions.
Year Group Events
Tower of London Trip - November 2018
As part of our topic on London on Tuesday 20th November, year 4 visited the Tower of London.
The children were able to see the Crown Jewels , the White Tower and Traitor’s Gate. While walking along the Tower’s walls the children were able to spot landmarks such as the Shard and London Bridge.
Ancient Greek Day 2018
On the 8th and 9th October year 4 enjoyed an Ancient Greek day.
The children became residents of Athens in 490BC which is under threat by Persian invaders. They take on typical roles found in the Athenian Agora (marketplace) at the time. They serve as wax tablet makers, pottery painters, fresco painters and jewellers.
The day ended with a Greek theatre in the afternoon.
E.R Reilly visits Year 3 and Year 4.
Today children in Years 3 and 4 at Downside were lucky enough to experience a visit from children’s author Eamonn Reilly! He captured the children’s imagination as he regaled them with stories from his books in his own inimitable style. Children were gripped as he described a child abandoned in a lonely forest and horrified as he describe the disgusting concoction another of his characters had to eat!
As well as his captivating storytelling, Eamonn gave the children some fantastic tips to use in their own writing and set them some writing challenges.
Why don’t you try one of Eamonn’s challenges?
Write a story where you lose something.
Write a story with a dilemma.
Draw a picture of a horrible magic potion – make a story around the potion.
What would you do if you had millions of pounds?
Children make a den and decide to track down criminals – write the story.
Write a ‘who done it?’ story.
Every time you write a story – try to include what is it that the reader will be desperate to find out?
This week Year 4 performed their assembly on the Sikh festival of Vaisakhi to parents and teachers. The parents walked in to the wonderful sounds of drumming from special guest Sarabjit Singh in Year 5. Marble Arch then began with an introduction to the assembly with some interesting facts about Vaisakhi and why it is celebrated by Sikhs. This was followed by a play performed by Piccadilly Circus and Marylebone which showed how the tenth Guru (Guru Goband Singh) created a Khalsa. Oxford Circus then read and poem and acted it out too. Finally, Baker Street performed a colourful Vaisakhi dance. The children and staff worked very hard to pull it off and we think they did a fantastic job and should be very proud! Well done Year 4!
E-Safety Assembly March 2018
Year 3 and 4 had a visit from an e Safety specialist who asked them about the things they are doing online and also the dangers that there can be from using the internet. The children took part in votes to figure out if a website was real or fake to try and get them to think about what makes a website trustworthy. They were also informed that if something doesn’t seem right that they should inform a trusted adult or press the CEOP button which is available on websites to report things.
Year 4 have had a busy day learning lots of new Spanish words with a focus on describing their favourite hobbies. They have taken part in activities including having a basic conversation in Spanish with a partner, colouring in flags with all of the instructions in Spanish, as well as creating a poster of their favourite hobbies using the Spanish meaning.
Qudsiya Khan, Piccadilly Circus, “Spanish Day was very exciting as we learnt new Spanish words!”
Zeeshan Malik, Piccadilly Circus, “Spanish is exciting to learn and I enjoy doing different activities in Spanish.”
Ancient Greece fabulous homework!
Year 4 Book Study - Explanation Text
Year 4 have written explanations about why they could be late for school. The children learnt to use fronted adverbials and nouns for precision. Click HERE to take a read of their writing!
Year 4 Book Study - 'How to train your Dragon'
Archived News from Year 4 - (1)
Week ending 5th October 2018
In Literacy, Year 4 have been exploring the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. After identifying the features of a good myth, the children practiced embedding these features into their own ideas. By expertly inferring Ariadne’s thoughts from her actions, the children wrote statements linking Ariadne to the characteristics of a hero. In understanding the character of Ariadne, we worked together to look at the events of the myth from her point of view whilst crowning her as the main protagonist and heroine. This allowed the children to create a storymap of the events focussing on Ariadne’s actions and thoughts rather than Theseus.
In Numeracy, the children have been discovering the effects that multiplying by 10 and 100 have on a number and the place value of each digit in that number. We hope to carry on with this a little bit more to ensure a thorough understanding.
In RE, we have been researching weddings from different religions and cultures. After identifying the main themes of commitment, joy and happiness, we were able to compare and contrast the similarities and differences in the ceremonies. The children enjoyed sharing their own experiences of weddings whilst also listening to the experiences of others.
Week ending 28th September 2018
In Literacy, the children have been exploring explanation texts further by coming up with their own excuses explaining a late arrival to school. The children have started to use different sentence types to enrich their writing. In identifying the use of subordinate clauses, the children wrote some sentences placing the subordinate clause first. In addition to this, nouns for precision were also embedded into the children’s writing. By the end of the week, the children had completed an explanation letter including fronted adverbials, subordinating conjunctions and nouns for precision.
In Numeracy, the children have been honing their skills of addition and subtraction including solving sums with multiple exchanges! Putting their skills to the test, the children tackled problems and sums involving numbers with up to 4-digits.
In Topic, the children have compared life in Ancient Greece to life in the UK right now. Comparing democracy, schooling, work life and the impact gender could play compared to the UK, 2018, most nearly everybody was in agreement that the world we live in now is much fairer then what it was.
Week ending 14th September 2018
In Literacy, Year 4 have been exploring and identifying the features of an explanation text. After reading both a story and an explanation of how the first Rhinoceros’ skin became crinkly and wrinkled, the children compared and contrasted the features of both. We then read a story about how the first camel obtained his hump. In preparation of writing their own explanation texts, the children created a story map detailing the main events.
In Numeracy, the children have been sharpening their rounding skills by not only rounding to ten, but also to the nearest hundred and thousand. To further this, the children then put their skills to the test by solving tricky word problems and reasoning questions.
In Topic, the children have been exploring the areas of great importance, from Ancient Greece, on a map. In identifying and labelling the different towns and cities, the children were then able to discuss the difficulties the mountain ranges bordering Greece could have caused the ancient civilisation. This resulted in a discussion based on how the ancient civilisation worked to overcome these difficulties in order to remain a powerful.
Week Ending 7th September 2018
Welcome to our Year 4 blog, where you can read about all the amazing things we learn and do in school.
In Literacy, Year 4 have been exploring poetry about an abandoned cottage. After identifying the vocabulary which highlighted the abandoned state, the children then used their imagination to write about how the cottage could have been before it was abandoned. Inferencing ideas from the text, the children also wrote some fear inducing accounts explaining how the cottage fell into destruction.
In Numeracy, the children have been working with number and place value. The children have identified the value of each digit in a four digit number, compared numbers and also calculated 1000 more than and 1000 less than any given number.
Our Topic this half term is Ancient Greece. In Topic, the children have been researching the story of creation from Zeus’ viewpoint. By identifying the main events which lead to Zeus’ leadership, the children were then able to write a powerful recount of what the Ancient Greeks believed to have taken place.
W/C: 18th June 2018
This week has been very busy for Year 4 with a special visitor and Spanish Day.
The special visitor was Walter from Animal Edutainment who brought a wide array of mini-beasts and other creatures for the children to look at and learn about as well as hold. The children were enthralled by Walter and his incredible knowledge so they were all engaged and interested.
Our Spanish Day gave the children the opportunity to learn about the parts of the body and they took part in the song ‘Heads, shoulders, knees and toes’ in Spanish. They also learnt to say, read and write the numbers 0-100 in Spanish and they noticed patterns with the words.
W/C: 4th June 2018
In Literacy, Year 4 have been exploring how to plan and write a suspense story. After identifying the features of a good suspense narrative, the children practiced embedding these features into their writing. By expertly using empty words to add to the threat and by creating a scary atmosphere, the children had created some nightmare worthy scenarios complete with hints of danger.
In Numeracy, the children have been working with time. The children converted the time from analogue to digital whilst also solving some time word problems.
In Topic, the children have been researching the life of mini beasts. After establishing that mini beasts were not tiny mythical creatures, the children the explored the use of identification keys to see the different ways that mini beasts could be grouped and distinguished.
Nearly all of our caterpillars have eaten to their full and have now formed their chrysalises. We are eagerly awaiting their emergence.
W/C: 23rd April 2018
In Literacy, Year 4 have been exploring the life events of the historic heroine Boudicca. After story mapping the main events, the children analysed the characteristics which made Boudicca who she was using evidence to support their inferences. Whilst exploring the Literary techniques used by Micheal Morpurgo, the children identified how writers can use hints to depict what they are trying to say.
In Numeracy, the children have been working with decimal numbers and their fraction equivalents. The children ordered and compared decimals with up to two points. They then moved onto rounding to the nearest whole number.
In Topic, the children have been researching the life of Roman Emperor Claudius. Intrigued by what made him so famous, the children discovered that despite his many disabilities, lack of family support and presumed inability. He was actually the only Roman Emperor successful in his bid to conquer Britain.
W/C 5th March 2018
Year 4 children have been busy planning their own fantasy story in Literacy this week based on a part of Alice in Wonderland that we explored. They have been continuing number work in Numeracy and have done lots of rounding to the nearest 10, 100 and 1000.
On Friday, the children took part in a WOW day for our topic, Islamic Golden Age. The children spent the day being creative and created a tea light by painting and decorating a glass jar. They also created a pattern on a foam tile and used this to create a repeating pattern. Some classes made origami stars out of coloured paper and others made a repeated circular pattern on paper. It was a day enjoyed by all.
W/C: 26th February 2018
In Literacy, the children have been divulging into the world of Wonderland with Alice. After watching the amusing tea party scene from Alice in Wonderland, the children used their senses to describe the scene by showing and not telling. They established this through the use of various sentence types and by piecing together words to create imagery rich sentences. The final product for this week was a description filled paragraph rich with similes, personification and onomatopoeia.
In Numeracy, the children have been working with place value in ordering and comparing numbers with up to 4 digits. They then moved onto rounding to 10 and 100 which was followed by counting down through to negative numbers. We hope to carry on with this next week.
In Topic, the children have been introduced to an era of trading, the sciences and maths, the Islamic Golden Age! The children have explored the amazing round city of Baghdad and all of the features which made it so brilliant and indefensible. On top of this, they have explored the importance that education played in that era creating links between now and then whilst also focussing on the development of writing. Having attempted writing callieform, most everyone was in agreement that writing on paper with our letter symbols was a development for the better.
W/C: 19th February 2018
Welcome back! I hope you’ve all had a lovely break!
The children have learnt mental methods for both addition and subtraction- followed by estimating answers using rounding. The children then applied this new learning to solve a range of problems.
It was Poetry week! The children had a selection of poems to learn and perform. The children absolutely loved the ‘Chocolate cake’ poem enthusiastically performed by Michael Rosen. After watching the poem, the children created success criteria. This enabled them to perform their chosen poem with clarity and expression. We then recorded the performances and peer assessed the performances. It was a brilliant start to the term!
This week saw Year 4 learning about multiplication facts in numeracy and learning about commutative law of multiplication.
In literacy, the children began writing their own story following the structure of The Last Wolf and The Jungle Book. They created their own characters and settings and have written some incredible descriptive paragraphs.
In this week’s guided reading, the children practised and performed a poem in small groups called The Invisible Beast which they all enjoyed as it is quite a scary poem.
In the penultimate week of our book study on The Last Wolf, the children have located all of the important events on a map using an atlas and also compared the Highlands in Scotland with Vermont in America where the main character ended up.
Weekly blog W/C 22 /1/2018
This week in literacy, having compared themes by two different authors, the children in Year 4 planned their own stories against the known plot structure. This involved deciding on a character and a setting for the main characters. The children creatively engaged in developing a loving relationship between the main characters. They then used their knowledge from last week to come up with an interesting dilemma ready to write their stories next week.
In numeracy, they have been looking at using the different strategies for mental addition and subtraction. The children further developed their understanding of reading, interpreting and recording data by solving problems presented in simple time graphs and tables. In addition to this, we have learnt to multiply and divide by one and zero, and have shown our understanding by applying our knowledge to in-depth reasoning questions.
In science, the children continued to explore the impact of friction on different surfaces. The children planned a fair test to find out which surface or footprint has the most friction. First, they predicted which surface material has the most friction and then then carried out an investigation to test their prediction. Children used applied their learning from Numeracy to record their results in a table and draw bar graphs to compare data.
We have had a very interesting week in Year 4.
In Numeracy, we have been learning all about reading, interpreting and recording data. We can construct Bar and Line Graphs to represent data. We can also read the graphs to answer and solve problems.
In Literacy, we have found ourselves immersed in the beautiful narrative and setting of The Jungle Book. Using our poetic skills from last week, we have also endeavoured and succeeded in creating imagery rich settings in the form of poems, enhanced by descriptive use of the five senses. We have also explored how the themes in The Jungle Book correspond to The Last Wolf. To do this, we compared the thought processes and character profiles of key characters in both narratives when faced with a decision to make.
The Last Wolf continues to hold our breath, as we face new hurdles with the main character, Robbie, in our Reading Lessons. In Topic, we have been studying how Robbie reacts when presented with a dilemma, and which emotions effect his final decision. We have written some excellent diary entries from Robbie’s point of view, highlighting the difficult process of decision making and reinforcing how one choice can define a character. We are eagerly anticipating the impact of Robbie’s decision to keep Charlie, the wolf cub, and we cannot wait to read on.
We hope next week will be as fulfilling as this one.
W/C 8th January 2018
We’ve been very busy this week in Year 4!
In Maths, we have been learning all about fractions. We now know how to find equivalent fractions, count in hundredths and even find fractions of amounts. In Literacy, we have been looking at descriptive poetry, and have used our learning from this to write our very own poems describing different animals. We then moved on to poems that describe a setting, ready for next week’s learning.
As you know, our Topic for this half term is our book study, reading ‘The Last Wolf’ by Michael Morpurgo. We are really enjoying the story far, and in Topic we have been learning all about the place where the story is set, as well as some of the history that the story is based upon. This has linked into our reading lessons, where we have looked more deeply at how a character is brought to life through use of language, and how the use of repetition in the texts helps to contribute to it’s meaning.
We also had some special visitors this week. An officer from Bedfordshire Police came into visit- with her friend Chase from Paw Patrol! They led a special assembly for Years 3 and 4, surrounding the topic of Road Safety.
We hope next week will be as good as this one!
In numeracy this week, we have been learning how to add amounts of money using the formal written method including decimals. They used their knowledge of rounding to estimate and solved problems involving money in pounds and pence.
In literacy, the children used their plan to write their story about sea otters using the skills they have learnt so far; verb openers, speech for characterisation, subordinating conjunctions as openers and possessive apostrophes.
This half term, our new topic for science is Light. The children started off by identifying as many different types of light sources and then investigating what happens when light is reflected from different surfaces. Next week, we will be investigating and discussing how shadows are formed.
Weekly blog W/C 30/10/2017
The start of the new half term meant the starting of new topics all around. Our area of learning in numeracy this week was subtraction and the children learnt how to subtract 4 digits by 4 digits and used their subtraction skills to help answer word problems using the bar model.
In literacy, we have started looking at animal stories and the children have planned the problem, solution and ending to a story about sea otters.
This half term, our new topic is London and the children started off by locating London and Luton on a map of the UK and also thought of some interesting questions that they would like to find out by the end of the topic. All of the children are looking forward to our visit to London next week for our trip so look out for pictures and a recount of the day next week.
Weekly blog W/C 09/10/2017
This week in literacy, the children in Year 4 have used their own ideas to plan their own myth. The children have been taught how to use inverted commas to punctuate direct speech and write complex sentences using a wide range of conjunctions.
In numeracy, they have been looking at using the different strategies for mental addition. The children have been encouraged to use their knowledge of rounding from previous learning to estimate the answers. They then learnt how to add four digit numbers using the formal written method and used this method to solve two-step word problems.
In science, this half term’s topic is magnets and the children learnt that magnets have a North and South Pole. First, they predicted whether two magnets will attract or repel each other, depending on which pole they are facing. They then carried out an investigation to find out if all parts of a magnet are equally strong and presented their findings using labelled diagrams. Next week, the children will continue to look at myths in literacy, and place value and reasoning in numeracy.
Weekly Blog W/C 02/10/017
In Literacy, the children were introduced to our new topic Myths. We began by reading and discussing the popular myth Perseus and the Gorgon and identifying the meaning of unfamiliar vocabulary and how the meanings of words change when used in different contexts. In preparation for next week children have planned their own myth following a clear structure.
In Numeracy, the children started by comparing triangles based on their properties and sizes. They also learnt about lines of symmetry in 2D shapes and had a chance of reflecting 2 D shapes along a line of symmetry.
During our topic lesson this week, the children have had the chance to write a diary entry about a boy in Sparta and how he might have felt when he moved away from his family. They produced brilliant diary entries which included the use of fronted adverbials for when, conjunctions and emotion words. Next week, the children will continue to work on myths in literacy and move onto column addition in Numeracy.
Weekly blog W/C 25/09/2017
This week in literacy, the children in Year 4 have been very busy making up excuses for the reasons why they were late for school. They have had some amazing ideas and are now starting to write their letter explaining why they are late. The children have been taught how to write sentences with fronted adverbials, sentences with the subordinate clause first and using nouns for precision.
In numeracy, they have been looking closely at decimal numbers, they have rounded them to the nearest whole number, ordered them, written the equivalent fraction and even looked at negative numbers.
In science, this half term’s topic is magnets and the children have been busy investigating which materials are attracted to magnets and which magnets have a stronger force. They have used a range of different magnets and have been encouraged to ask their own questions around the topic. Next week, the children will be moving on to looking at myths in literacy and shapes in numeracy.
Weekly Blog WC 4/9/17
Welcome to Year 4! It has been lovely to see the children prepared and ready for the challenges ahead!
This week, during literacy, the children read and analysed a poem about an abandoned cottage and selected vocabulary and phrases to identify why the cottage had been left in this state. The children were taught how to make inferences from the poems. Questions such as:
‘Why did they think the cottage was left like this?’
‘What language has been used to describe the cottage?’, encouraged the children to delve deeper into the meaning of the poem.
Children were supported in selecting phrases and vocabulary that supported their ideas. They then used pictures to predict what the cottage might have looked like before it was left in such disrepair!
In Numeracy, the children applied place value knowledge into solving a range of problems. They looked at the values of each digit and used these same digits to create the highest and lowest values.
Our topic this term is Ancient Greece and the children have read some amazing myths. They explored the myth that explained how Zeus became the king of the Gods and rewrote this from Zeus’ point of View. It was interesting for the children to get an insight into the Ancient Greek religion. Next week, the children will be experiencing life as an Ancient Greek child in out Living History day. Pictures and reviews of the day will be posted on the website. Keep a look out!
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