What a very busy week we have had as we race towards half-term. Years 3 and 4’s excitement and enjoyment of their Mayan day was palpable and I’m certain that you will enjoy the recount of the day. There was more excitement when I joined Year 5 as they learnt about the safe and correct use of bunsen burners. Learning across the whole school has been a real adventure this week!
This week, the children in Reception had some very special visitors… a cat, a dog, a goose, and a little red hen!
The children enjoyed retelling the story of ‘The Little Red Hen,’ using actions and puppets.
In Maths, they helped to order the hen’s feathers according to their length, and they were fantastic at putting the ears of wheat in order, according to its height.
Making bread was a fabulous way to end the week. Well done, super chefs!
In English this week, Year 1 have been reading the story, ‘Handa’s Surprise’ by Eileen Browne. They started off by predicting what they thought would happen just by looking at the front cover and then used story maps to retell the story using phrases from the book. The most exciting part of the week, however, was tasting some of the delicious fruits Handa packed in her basket for her friend, Akeyo. All of the fruits were popular; the passion fruit was a really nice surprise! The children have also been working hard to create Papier Mache plates which they will decorate with traditional African patterns next week.
Year 2 have been researching and preparing information about an Australian landmark in small groups. We have used the internet safely to find interesting facts and have compiled our facts on a planning sheet.
Next, we will prepare a poster of information about our chosen landmark and present it to the other members of Year 2. It has been an exciting activity! In Maths, we have been looking at comparing number sentences and using inverse operations to check our work.
It has been a very full week! In RE, we have been thinking about Harvest Festival and offering thanks to God. We have also made a pumpkin with strips of paper listing all of the things we are grateful for. In Science, we have learned all about a ‘Fair Test’ and how to create one.
We then put our learning to use and created an experiment to test the effects of sugar on our teeth (using egg shells). We have added an egg to 300ml of water, 300ml of Coke and 300ml of orange juice. The results have been very surprising!
Years 3 & 4
On Wednesday this week, Years 3 and 4 proudly wore the Maya headdresses they had created and took part in their much anticipated ‘Ancient Maya day’. We spent the day with Ha Nohoch Ni’ (Big Nose), the leader of a Maya tribe, exploring areas of the Ancient Maya culture through a variety of informative and interactive activities.
The children began by learning how to count from one to ten in Mayan. Following this, they learned about the different methods of human sacrifice and how it was considered an honour to be sacrificed to the gods. Then, of course, we tasted Maya chocolate. This consisted of 90% cocoa and definitely resulted in a split vote!
Moving on, the children demonstrated excellent drama skills and team work. They worked in mixed groups to develop and perform scenes to ‘teach’ their peers about particular aspects of the Ancient Maya culture, including the ball game, ‘Pok-a-Tok’ (in which the winner was sacrificed!), death rituals and sacrifice. The groups were scored against their story-telling, volume, acting and stage positioning.
Years 3 and 4 looked closely at a selection of Ancient Maya artefacts and suggested their purpose or use. Ha Nohoch Ni gave wonderful demonstrations of how some of the instrumental artefacts were played. The children were amazed at the volume and indeed the animal sounds created by these Ancient Maya carvings.
The children’s next challenge was Maya maths! They learned the symbols for zero, one and five and applied these to write the Maya representations of two and three-digit numbers. We were impressed by the children’s determination and perseverance to solve the problems.
We ended our memorable day with the Mayan Creation Story, in which we all played a part. The children thoroughly enjoyed seeing Miss White and Mrs Newman playing the roles of the gods, while they enacted the creation of the world and the human race.
An amazing day was had by all. We would like to say a special thank you to Robert at ‘Past Productions’ for his enthusiasm and knowledge about the Ancient Maya and literally bringing the children’s history learning to life.
The children earnt their Bunsen Burner licences this week. With great maturity, they showed a calm and sensible approach to lighting them and changing the flames. They also identified the differences between the different flames and thought about what they could be used for and why they changed. Now, they will be able to use them in Science as we continue our study of materials and their properties. We will be starting to look at ways to separate materials and can now look at evaporation without having to wait for the sun to heat water! Very fortunate at this time of year.
Thank you, Year 6, for continuing to share a variety of very interesting historical artefacts from home. Perdie brought in three rounds from a1942 Browning machine gun plus a 1939 Spitfire pilot’s leather helmet.
Jos found three very old bottles near his home, one of which used to hold ginger beer.
Speech & Drama
Just a gentle reminder that if you want your son or daughter to sign up for individual lessons then all parents need to contact me first by e mail on firstname.lastname@example.org
This week five or six children came up to me and said their parents had agreed but obviously I cannot start until I have formal agreement.
I have a few spaces available either after half term or from January.
Look forward to hearing from you.
Mr Jonathan Woolf
Annual Childhood Flu Immunisation Programme
If you would like your child to receive the flu based immunisation (nasal spray) at school on the 24th November 2020, the deadline to give consent has been extended until 23rd October 2020. Please follow the link below.
Understandably, given the current climate, we are unable to hold our usual, full school Harvest Festival next week. However, each class is enjoying learning a new harvest song and the meaning of harvest will be shared in assemblies and in class. This year, we will, once again, be donating to our local food bank, organised by Newmarket’s Open Door charity. The charity would be extremely appreciative of the following donations:
- Tins of vegetables or meat;
- Tea and coffee; and
- Loo rolls, toothpaste and all sanitary items.
Please bring in your gifts throughout the week for collection on Friday. Thank you.
This week, Kindness Cups were won by Hugo in Year 2 and jointly by Isabella and Lefkianna in Year 3. Well done, children!
This week, we wished a happy birthday to Freya and Tommaso in the Nursery and to Lottie in Year 4.
With my best wishes for a lovely weekend with your children,