On this page you will find out about all the exciting things that are happening in our classroom throughout the year.
Please come back regularly, as we will be putting lots of photos up celebrating children’s work as well as information on what we are learning so that parents can support their children throughout the school year.
We look forward to a very busy year with lots of fun learning!
Reading is a huge part of learning by the time children get to year 4. This not only helps them carry out research independently but also helps massively with their speaking and writing skills. Because of this, we encourage children to read as often as possible both in school at home. Our class book shelf is stocked with a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction books. We have done this so that every child can find a book that appeals to them and have set up a reading area that is a catalyst for a love of reading. We firmly believe that there isn’t such a thing as a child that doesn’t enjoy reading; they simply haven’t found the right book. To try and encourage some of our reluctant readers, I will be running a Premier League Reading Stars club at lunch times. This was hugely successful last year and accelerated progress was made in both reading and writing by those children who took part.
Throughout the year, the content of our reading corner will be supplemented by books based around the topics we will be doing in that half term. This not only allows the children to gather ideas and information independently but also models what a good piece of writing looks like so the children can then try and mirror this. As well as allowing children to access books based around the topics we are covering independently, we also have daily guided reading and literacy sessions to facilitate their progress.
To supplement children’s learning in school, we encourage children to read at home with their parents, or an older sibling, as often as possible. This is vital in building up a child’s vocabulary but also in improving their comprehension of what they are reading. This is vitally important as they move further up through school as children are assessed by what they understand in a text and not simply by how fluently they can read it. To help improve a child’s comprehension when reading at home you could ask questions such as;
- What has happened so far?
- Can you predict what will happen next?
- What do you think about the characters?
- Are there any words you don’t know?
- How do you think the characters feel?
Children will be writing every day in year 4, giving them an opportunity to cover many different genres. By year 4, children are encouraged to self-assess and peer-assess each other’s work using marking ladders and the success criteria they have identified as a class.
By year 4, they are beginning to appreciate the way that vocabulary, punctuation, grammar and sentence structure are tools which real writers use to enhance the content of writing. We are working towards quality pieces of writing which are imaginative, interesting and thoughtful. We make children aware that these skills are transferable across all subjects and the children produce one piece of cross curricular writing every week in which we assess whether these skills taught in literacy sessions are being applied. These different skills are revisited many times over the year to ensure that by the time children move up to year 5, they are confident, competent writers.
To encourage children to produce the best piece of writing they possibly can in every lesson, we pick two authors of the week. The recipients of this award receive a rosette each in celebration assembly on Fridays as well as having their work published on POBBLE, a website where children’s work is shared online so that it can be appreciated by parents, children and teachers from around the world.
Throughout the week, children will carry out daily spelling sessions in which we look at various ways of learning that week’s spelling rule –usually through various games and activities.
For example, if your child is looking at ‘-dge’ words that week then the list may contain fud ge, judge, bridge and dodge but then they may also be tested on words that are not on their list such as badger. It is important that children spend time at home learning their spellings, to supplement the work they do in school.
These are statutory word lists provided by the government and children must learn to read and spell the words below.
During this process, children WILL get things wrong and we have a culture within the classroom where this is OK. The important thing, is understanding where we went wrong and making sure we learn from it in order to improve our mathematical thinking.
Although learning written methods for tricky calculations is important in year 4, we encourage children to work calculations out mentally where possible. This is quicker and can often be more accurate when the calculation isn’t too testing. To help improve their mental maths recall, we run ‘mini maths’ sessions three times a week in which the children practise their times tables in small groups. By the end of year four, children are expected to know all the times tables up to 12×12 so they may need to do some extra practise on them in order to meet this target (Hit the button is a great game children can play at home to learn these and is on the useful links part of this page).
As part of the year 4 curriculum, children will be doing a lot of work on telling the time and working out the duration of activities. This is an aspect of maths in which many children struggle so if you could do some work on telling the time at home and working out the duration of TV programmes, travelling to places, making tea, etc. then that would be very much appreciated and help your child massively with the learning they will do in class.