Fordfield Road, Sunderland, Tyne And Wear, SR4 0DA
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Whilst some of the Year 6 staff and pupils were having an adventure at Derwent Hill, we enjoyed some mini adventures of our own.
Miss Clarke and Miss Richardson became the Taskmasters for the week. They set us some weird and wonderful tasks to complete in teams.
Our first task – to build the most spectacular tower.
There were many different interpretations of the word ‘spectacular’ and lots of persuasive stories to encourage the taskmasters to give their team the most points.
Some of us spent time planning and researching towers; others just went for it and tried many different ideas.
Task 2 – build a bridge that is at least 15 cm long.
There were bonus points on offer for this task (strongest and most realistic bridge).
We discovered that we are a creative bunch during this task!
Task 3 – do something that looks amazing in slow motion.
This took some thinking and we decided to take this task out into our beautiful school grounds. The slow motion videos were hilarious and involved lots of jumping around.
Task 4 – protect your egg!
This task asked us to decorate our eggs first. Then we had to think of a way of protecting our egg from a 5 foot drop. Unfortunately, some of our eggs were broken or damaged in the decorating process but that didn’t mean we were going to give up.
We have been excited to come to school and discover what unusual tasks we were going to be set by the Taskmaster each day. However, we can’t wait for our classmates and Mrs Anderson to return.
At the end of each term, our teachers choose a selection of children from every year group to attend a Pupil Conference. In these exciting meetings, we have the opportunity to share our thoughts on what we have learned during our topic lessons. Yesterday morning, Alexis, Bethany and Abbie were invited along and thoroughly enjoyed telling Miss Gillies and Mrs Telfer all about our Frozen Kingdoms topic.
Alexis: “We shared all our information about the Arcitic and Antarctic and amazed them with our facts. I really enjoyed showing them my work and knowledge organiser!”
Abbie: “We talked about Ernest Shakleton and Miss Gillies couldn’t believe that my work had filled 3 books since the beginning of the Spring Term!”
Bethany: “We had to answer lots of questions about our topic and show off the work we are proud. I think we even taught Miss Gillies and Mrs Telfer a few new facts!”
Our new topic in the Summer term is LifeSmart and our teachers tell us that we are in for a treat as we learn how to stay safe in the wider world and prepare ourselves for our journey on to secondary school!
Through our thorough research, we have discovered that the climate in the Polar Regions is rather chilly, reaching up to -60 degrees Celsius! This made us think…how could we keep warm if we were to travel to a frozen kingdom? After meeting Al Sylvester, we learned that layering is the key to keeping warm and toasty when on the ice because the warm air becomes trapped between the layers.
As part of our DT this term, we have started to make our own fabric to make a blanket to keep us warm when travelling across an icy tundra. We decided to use wool as this is what was used by many polar explorers such as Ernest Shackleton. We have learned how to weave separate woollen threads onto a loom to create our own fabric. We have carefully thought about colour and design to be bright so that we don’t camouflage into the snow and ice.
Learning to spot hazards and knowing how to keep ourselves safe is an important part of growing up. As we begin to think about moving on to secondary school, we know that we are going to become more independent, so developing our life skills will help us be successful at this.
Yesterday, we travelled to Safety Works in Newcastle – an ordinary looking building from the outside. However, inside we discovered a mini town including a police station, hospital, park, metro station and house. In small groups, we moved around each area of this mini world learning to spot dangers and making sure we know how to keep ourselves safe.
Aiden said, “It is important that you do not trespass on the metro and make sure you stand with your back against the wall.”
Alisha said, “I didn’t know how important it was to walk in front of the lollipop person when crossing the road, but I will make sure I do that from now on!”
Look out for us being safe at school, in the community and at home. The biggest piece of advice Year 6 would like you to all learn is to check your smoke alarms weekly, just like we do at school.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to explore Antarctica? Have you ever thought about what it would be like to live in a land of ice? Well last week, Year 6 found out the highs and the lows of an Antarctic expedition from Al Sylvester: adventurer, explorer and an inspiration to us all. We now know how to survive, what training we need to do, how to go to the toilet and how to remain very, very patient in some of the harshest and most difficult conditions on Earth.
Some of us were lucky enough to try on Al Sylvester’s expedition kit, which included many, many layers. Kaiden quickly realised how warm Al was when travelling across the ice. Kaiden said that his favourite pieces of advice from our favourite explorer were, “Always wear a face mask or you will grow snot icicles and mittens keep your hands warm and gloves do not.”
Our wonderful visitor talked to us about explorers who inspired him as a young child, including the infamous Ernest Shackleton. To our surprise and excitement, this week we discovered that Ernest Shackleton’s lost ship Endurance has been discovered in pristine condition, hiding 3 km below the icy surface. We have been enthralled by the footage and would love to share this with you: https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/60673759
Year 6 were set the task to encourage all Highfield children to make every day count at school by being on time, every day. Immediately, we decided to make posters to share around school and on our website. Using our creative talent, we designed characters and slogans to share a very clear message that by being at school every day, you will achieve.
Take a look at just a few of our designs. Have they encouraged you to improve your attendance?
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to spend two years living in a Polar region? Within our History learning this week, Year 6 have been learning about a famous explorer named Ernest Shackleton and his determined efforts to cross the Antarctic. One of his expeditions took two years to complete!
Using sources such as photographs and diary entries, we began to make inferences about Shackleton. One very interesting source was the advert Shackleton put in a national newspaper inviting men join him on his expedition. Once we read it, we were not encouraged to apply but we discovered over 5,000 men applied to be part of his crew. Harvey said, “I wouldn’t apply because he’s not offering much money and he has said we might actually die on this trip!”
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s our Year 6 Attendance Heroes!
As mentioned in the Highfield Herald two weeks ago, each class were set the task of coming up with an attendance initiative. This is ours! We are collecting a sticker everyday and zooming up through the percentages, aiming for 100% each week. Our aim is to be Here Everyday Regularly On time for two weeks and we will win ‘Hero Time’ - an hour of fun and games every other Friday afternoon.
Come on Witham and Wensum - let’s improve our attendance and be the superheroes we know we are!
How was the world created?
Have you ever sat quietly in your bedroom on a wet and rainy day and pondered about the world and how it all began? Have you ever thought about why the waste product of trees (Oxygen) plays an essential part to the survival of humans? These are just some of the big questions that were pondered about when our wonderful visitor, Andy, taught us about Christianity this week in our RE lesson. Andy had us thinking about big things, asking lots of questions and laughing our socks off playing a couple of games. We can’t wait for our next session!
You’ve got a friend
During our music lessons this term, we have been learning to sing You’ve Got a Friend by Carole King. Along the way, we have been appraising just a few of her songs, some of which she didn’t even sing herself! Some of our favourites are Locomotion and Will You Love Me Tomorrow?
We are now learning to accompany the song with Glockenspiels - a musical instrument made from long and short pieces of metal. Miss Clarke was so impressed with our musical talent that she decided to film us playing along. Our next challenge will be to sing with the accompaniment of Glockenspiels. We can’t wait!
Multiplying fractions? …Easy!
Although we are only in the first few days of the New Year, there has been no time wasted in maths! We were straight back on to our fractions work and we have even begun to multiply. First we tackled multiplying a fraction by an integer (a whole number), then we moved on to multiplying a fraction by a fraction. Not sure how to do it? Ask one of us to explain as our reasoning and explanation skills are coming on wonderfully!
Next we move onto dividing fractions with a little help from Adele! Intrigued? Have a go yourself:
The Perfect Hiding Place
Our first writing focus this year takes us to an unexpected place as we go with Lucy through those magical doors of the enchanted wardrobe and find ourselves in Narnia. This week has been all about improving our descriptions using figurative language (metaphor, simile and personification) and the sentences we have produced as some of the best our teachers have ever seen! See what you think…
Adam – Above, the moon was a glittering shield defending the stars.
Ty – The wind swept through the branches like a wolf hunting its prey.
Lauren – The cold breeze whispered its icy breath ear to ear, luring me on into this world of magic and mystery.
Lily-Mai – All around Lucy, snow danced until it dropped to the floor.
Alisha – The snow was a thick blanket of snow hugging the trees.
We are sure you’ll agree that our writing is developing very well. Our plans are written, so stand by on Freeflow for our finished setting descriptions by the end of next week.
We’re off on a Polar adventure…
After a fantastic Autumn term learning all things World War Two related, we were eager to begin our new Spring topic this week: Frozen Kingdoms!
We began by starting a new class novel, Sky Song by Abi Elphinstone. Sky Song is a magical, mystical story of good versus evil set on the Arctic-like plains, mountains, forests and caves of Erkinwald. So far, we have been introduced to the two main characters, Eska and Flint, not to mention a mischievous fox pup called Pebble! Both classes are thoroughly enjoying the tale so far and it is really helping us with our frozen kingdom related vocabulary.
Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, Jack Frost nipping at our noses, yule tide carols being sung by our choir and Year 6 dressed up as evacuees. Year 6 had a wonderful trip to Beamish Museum to celebrate the end of our World War Two topic and what an experience it was!
Dressed up as evacuees, we went back in time and were evacuated to Home Farm where we were expected to help with life on the farm: looking after the animals, picking the fruit and vegetables and picking up the horse manure with our bare hands! After a day’s hard work, we cosied up by a coal fire and had a chance to write a postcard home to our families. It was difficult to know what to write as we were homesick but we didn’t want to worry our families either.
After our evacuation, we explored Beamish Museum. We were lucky enough to travel on a tram to visit the town and talk to many of the shop keepers there. Wensum visited the park and leaned about the cannon there. Kaiden asked if the class could have a minutes silence to remember those who had lost their lives in combat and the rest of Wensum agreed, which made Miss Clarke and Mrs Beaton extremely proud.
The town was decorated with Christmas trees, wreaths and garlands which made it the perfect setting for us all to sing some festive songs. In front of the large, beautifully decorated tree in the centre of town, Wensum and Witham (lead by Mr Bianchi) sang sweetly, which soon gathered a very appreciative crowd. A wonderfully festive day was had by all.
A very special thank you from all in Year 6 to Mr Bianchi for helping us make this trip so special.
Mrs De Muschamp’s Christmas Chocolate Challenge
This time of year, when going for your weekly shop, I am sure you are tempted to place one or two tubs of Quality Street chocolates in your trolley to begin Christmas preparations. Have you ever wondered about the maths linked to these delicious festive treats? Year 6 have done just that! Did you know that the sweets are contained in an octagonal prism shaped tub? Or that there are twelve iconic chocolates to choose from? Or that the complete tub weighs 650g? This simple tub is actually filled to the brim with maths!
Year 6 have not gone crazy but were set an extra special festive challenge this week by Mrs De Muschamp: to create mathematical problems based on a simple tub of Quality Street. Our prize for succeeding in this challenge? To consume the contents of this tub!
Working in teams, we began collecting numbers and data that could be used in mathematical problems. We then thought about the mathematical areas that the problems could be based on, e.g. fractions, ratio or measurement. Finally, we got to work and here are our favourite festive, chocolate-themed maths problems. Why don’t you have a go at solving them…and reward your efforts with a chocolate or two.
Year 6 would like to say a huge thank you to Mrs De Muschamp for our Christmas challenge and the delicious boxes of chocolates. We can’t wait to see what Easter brings!
Our Christ-maths problems:
Future Olympic gymnasts …
We are really enjoying our PE lessons this term!
Over the last few weeks, we have been improving our strength and gymnastic skills such as jumping, leaping, balancing and rolling and then challenging ourselves to use them creatively with the apparatus. We are so proud of the progress we have made, particularly with our ‘can do’ attitude and overcoming some fears.
The Amazing Disappearing Colour Wheel!
We have really enjoyed our disappearing colour wheels this week!
As part of our Science lessons, we have been learning about the amazing observations of Isaac Newton as white light streamed through his window one morning. The light happened to pass through a glass prism, creating a beautiful rainbow. From this, we discovered that white light is actually made up of seven different colours: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. We placed these colours onto a wheel and then made it spin. We were shocked with the results…the seven colours turned back into white!
Beyond the lines…
Searching the rusted, cramped boat, the boys were trying to figure out where they were. As they looked around them, all they could see was a vast ocean of metal helmets clashing together. Silence filled the sky as the boat approached the shore. You could slice the atmosphere with a knife. Suddenly, the boat came to an abrupt halt against the rocks of the blood-soaked shore. The heavy ramp allowed the soldiers to disembark. Heavy boots rhythmically clumped across the grains of sand, searching for a Czech hedgehog. (Written by Gracie Maddison – Wensum)
Do you feel like you are there? Can you feel the anticipation of the characters as they enter a war zone?
Over the last couple of weeks, Year 6 have thoroughly enjoyed using all of their writing skills to create wonderfully atmospheric stories set on an action-packed battlefield in France during D-Day. We were inspired to write these narratives after watching a beautiful yet very emotional animation called Beyond the Lines.
So sit back, relax and enjoy some of our favourites.
Can you remember a time when somebody was kind to you? Perhaps a person allowed you to go in front of them in a queue. Maybe your friend phoned you to ask how your week was going. Or perhaps someone you know helped you in a much deeper way. There are a million ways to offer kindness. And at a time when the world seems to have so many problems, Year 6 have started to take the issue of kindness very seriously indeed!
In our RSHE lesson this week, we have been learning about the difference between kindness and being nice. We were also shocked to discover that kindness can fall into three categories. The first is interpersonal kindness. Some examples are donating old clothes to charity or giving a compliment to another person. The second is environmental kindness, which could mean simply recycling or organising a group event to clean a local park or beach. The third category is less obvious: personal kindness, which means treating yourself kindly. Some examples are taking a walk in nature or setting yourself an objective to complain less.
This term, Year 6 are dedicated to demonstrating kindness in all that we do. Look out for us at home and at school finding little ways to brighten up your day.
“When you’re a Kid in WW2”
In music, Mr Bianchi has found a fantastic song that teaches all about life in Britain within the war years (1939-1945). Take a look at us perfecting the tune and lyrics, and why not learn the words yourself…
Our science this half term is ‘How we see things’ and learning from the master himself, Sir Isaac Newton, we have discovered that it is actually the spectrum of colours within lights that determines and objects colour!
“I was shocked to realise that white light is actually made up of the colours of the rainbow!” – Demi
“We learned that Newton was ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’ as many scientists that came before him had tried to prove how we see things. Newton won the race to prove his theory though!” – Zach
You will not believe what we have been doing in this week’s maths! We have been using our knowledge of times tables to calculate complex problems involving long division. We learned the steps to success were to estimate, calculate and use inverse (doing the opposite calculation) to check that we had reached the answer. Take a look at us hard at work, if you look carefully you may see steam coming from our ears!
“The thing I love about Year 6 is that everything links!”
We are really enjoying delving into the past in Year 6, and the majority of our lessons focus on important aspects, events, places and people linked to World War Two.
In one of our first history sessions, we listened to the same radio broadcast declaring war that was heard on the wireless in September 1939. We then read the transcript of what Neville Chamberlain had said to prepare our country for battle, and we knew one thing: we could do better!
In our English lessons that followed, we built up a huge bank of formal (posh, as some of us call it!) vocabulary and we got into the role of a fearless leader ready to lead his fellow Britons into war. We hope you enjoy reading some of them here – don’t forget to put on your best Chamberlain voice whilst you read!
One of the most prestigious roles we can hope for in Year 6 is the job of House Captain! It is our responsibility to set an example of good behaviour, sportsmanship, learning and friendship to the other children in school. We also share words of encouragement on our weekly assembly zooms in front of the WHOLE school!
Throughout the week, we make sure that our teams are on track and on a Friday lunchtime we put our maths skills into practise when we count up the points for our teams in each class throughout the school.
So far this term, we have seen a good amount of points earned in each house team…but we can always do better. Come on Hartley, Clanny, Dawson, Doxford and Swan – work hard and let’s succeed together!
What a great start of the term we have had in Year 6! Our days are already jam-packed with the learning we are doing and the children are giving 100% effort in all of their lessons.
Our classes are named after rivers in the UK this year; Miss Clarke’s is Wensum and Mrs Anderson’s is the river Witham. We are all part of a big Year 6 team and are doing brilliantly settling into a new routine.
Our Autumn term topic is World War Two and we are already diving into the key facts and information in our lessons. Witham and Wensum are eager to share our work with you, so if you don’t yet have access to Free Flow, please get in touch with your class teacher or the school office!