It was such great fun to see the children at today's party events! I am sure they are all exhausted after all of the festivities. Once again, we all want to congratulate the children for not only finishing exams but for continuing to display a positive attitude through all of the challenges they have had to face along the way.
Moving into next week, we will be placing a large focus on mental health, something that Mrs Sharman spoke about at our assembly yesterday, where the children will be completing mindful activities.
We will still be asking the children to complete their work to a high standard and to be on time to sessions so that they can get the most out of their final year here at Kerem. We are also looking to move onto more project based assignments in the upcoming weeks.
Have a restful weekend! Shabbat Shalom.
Jewish Studies – 22nd January : 9th Shevat
This week we have continued learning Chumash Shemot. This does not come without its challenges when learning remotely, but the children are making a good effort to stay focussed and participate in the lesson, which was helped this week by the amazing edtech tool, PearDeck.
We have continued our topic of Tikkun Olam, this week having created a Chessed calendar. We have also linked Tu B’Shevat to Tikkun Olam and have started looking in more detail at Tu B’Shevat and the reasons behind needing a new year for trees.
Again, I ask that you please encourgage your child to attend Tefillah at 8:30 each morning – this is part of the school day and they are noticeable in their absence. We always try to emphasise the importance of a Jew starting their day by acknolwedging HaShem, and it would be great if this message could please be reinforced by yourselves too.
Have an enjoyable weekend and a beautiful Shabbat.
Friday 15th January 2021
I am pleased to say that the final week of exam preparations is officially over. Over the next few weeks the children will begin to embark on new topics and projects that they can really dig their teeth into!
I am wishing everyone sitting the Immanuel exam good luck as well as those that still have interviews! I look forward to hearing how they went next week. Please continue to keep us updated with any new information you have received.
Jewish Studies 15th January – 2nd Shevat
Firstly to say how impressed I have been with how quickly and easily the children seem to have adapted to online lessons. They are (mostly) punctual, ready, organised and keen to learn.
We have been continuing our Chumash lessons, using a selection of online edtech tools to help us and have been reviewing our Rashi reading skills too.
Our current topic is Tikkun Olam and we have looked at this from a general perspective – not wasting, recycling, etc as well as focussing on the theme of Chesed and seeing how small acts of kindness can make a huge difference to peoples’ lives.
It would be wonderful to see more of Year 6 at Tefillah in the mornings as well as supporting their classmates at Kabbalat Shabbat on Friday afternoons. Well done to the children who have willingly volunteered to participate in Kabbalat Shabbat so far this term.
I wish you all Shabbat Shalom and a restful, relaxing weekend.
Friday 8th January 2021
We hope you and the children have now adjusted to remote learning. From my end it has been great to be able to see the children fully engaged with their tasks and completing work to the best of their ability. I do also stay online during sessions to give any additional support. I am also contactable through email or the google classroom if they need to have a private conversation with me. The online, whole class sessions have been a fun, new way to keep the class connected with their peers. Each week I will be checking in with them to see how they are finding things.
Monday's work will be posted to the classroom at 7pm on Sunday.
All other work will be posted the day before also at 7pm.
Friday 11th December 2020
What a term! The children have entered year 6 with the understanding and maturity to work above and beyond. I have been immensely proud of their progress and all that they have achieved so far. For those taking exams over the December break, I am wishing you the best of luck.
On Atom learning I have set English and Maths timed papers for the children to do over the break should they wish to, as well as NVR and VR for those sitting ISEB exams soon.
We finalised and published our Chanukah performance, which was sent out yesterday. This year was based on the poem If by Rudyard Kipling. The children performed their lines incredibly well and demonstrated creativity when coming up with the concepts behind the meanings of their lines in particular.
In English, the children went through comprehension papers in small groups and created a few stories during short writes. For Maths the children created their own exam papers in which they had to include several areas of Maths' topics we have covered so far. They also had the opportunity to go through Maths papers in smaller groups, which were closely supported by Mrs. Sondhelm and me.
Please stay safe over the holiday and have a relaxing break.
Jewish Studies – 25th Kislev - 11th December
How the class has shrunk this week – from eleven down to just two… though it’s all about quality, not quantity – and those that have been in school this week have worked incredibly hard and diligently. We continued our Chumash-Rashi study, having learnt up to verse ten, and have completed a few pieces of written/creative work based around this learning.
In our Chanukah lessons we have discussed the link between Chanukah and Jewish pride, looking at pirsum haNes (publicising the miracle of Chanukah) and what it is that makes us be proud to be Jewish.
I look forward to having a full class back again in January, where we will be launching our new mini-project in conjunction with the Ivrit department entitled Different Faces of Israel… watch this space for more details.
Wishing you all a wonderful Chanukah, a peaceful Shabbat and a happy, safe and healthy winter break.
Jewish Studies - 4th December 18th Kislev
Year Six have been learning about the Chanukah story this week, looking especially closely at what is meant by the word Hellenism and the effects that Hellenism had on the Jews in Israel at the time of the Chanukah story (165 BCE). We have also continued our study of Sefer Shemot Perek Bet with a focus on text analysis and understanding of Rashi.
Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom,
Friday 4th December 2020
This week the children have been working extremely hard to finish the school's mini mag which will be available to purchase next week! The proceeds will go to charity - We are asking the children to decide which charity to donate to next week.
Atom homeworks have been released on their due date. If you are keen for me to stop homeworks earlier for your child please get in touch. There are mock tests for children sitting exams in December available from today. When we do break up from school next week we will be releasing at least two or three mock tests per subject. We only have access to a certain number of tests so please do use these wisely.
Next week the children will be taking part in the PSHE lesson that they had missed last year. This lesson is part of the curriculum for year 5 and so they will receive their year 6 PSHE lesson in the Summer term.
Maths - Volume and surface area, papers, reasoning questions
English- Classic text, Creative writing, Comprehension, End of term spelling test
End of Term!
Have a great weekend!
Jewish Studies 11th Kislev - 27th November
This week in Jewish Studies we have continued our study of Parashat Shemot. We analysed the text to understand from where the Midrash of Batya's arm stretching out far enough to reach Moshe's basket came from. We learnt from this the idea that a task is never impossible - if we try hard to achieve something, HaShem meets us half way. We also learnt a new skill - that of reading Rashi text. With the help of some online resources, we had mastered the skill within just one lesson.
Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom.
Friday 27th November 2020
It was lovely speaking with and seeing you all on Wednesday evening. Reports are being sent home today along with the children's work that they have emailed to themselves to show you. I am also sending home their creative writing books. Please remind the children to have these back at school on Monday.
I have introduced 'secret student' in the classroom to push the incentive of our Kerem characteristics. This will support the children's resilience and initiative when completing work in the classroom. The 'secret student' gets randomly selected at the beginning of each day. If they have shown one or more of our Kerem characteristics, they receive house points for their team.
They worked really well with year 5 in PE this week and showed excellent team work on the pitch when playing rugby. I had been very impressed with the effort they put into this lesson and the sports coach had been very impressed by their collaboration.
Coming up next week:
-Maths: Area and perimeter of compound shapes, maths papers, problem solving and reasoning activities.
-English: Texts, comprehension papers, SPAG modal verbs
NVR practice activities!
Friday 20th November 2020
This week for anti-bullying week the children have taken part in lots of ways to generate Chesed/Kindness at Kerem. They have written stories, painted pebbles for the pebble project, and have watched and been involved in online interactive scenarios. This will be a topic that we will continue to provide support throughout the year.
Atom learning mock tests will be available for those sitting for selective schools. These again will be for Maths, English, Verbal and Non-verbal reasoning. They are not compulsory- but are definitely great practice.
Coming up next week:
Maths- Reviewing ratio and proportion and again going through Maths papers.
English- Modern text, Spag- Idioms, Comprehension Papers
Friday 13th November 2020
This week I have set non-compulsory mock tests for English, Maths, Verbal and Non Verbal Reasoning for the children to complete. As exams are nearly around the corner, we thought that it would be a good idea to set mock tests so that they get used to the online exam style.
This week all year six prefects took part in the Kerem Cares Council elections, where they chose two children from each year group to be a part of the three councils- Kehilla, Tzedakah and Tikkun Olam. The year 6s who were part of a council last year will still be continuing it this year.
For Remembrance Day, the Year 6s created a video describing what Remembrance Day is and why people all around the world honour it. They also recited a poem. This video was then played to other classes in the school before stopping for a minutes silence- I have also attached it under the blog if you would like to watch.
The kids looked terrific today all dressed in red for Mitzvah Day. They had also taken the time to make cards for one of two Israeli charities which are ALEH and Save a Child's Heart.
Coming Up Next Week:
Parents Evening- Wednesday
Maths- Algebra, Atom Learning and Practice Papers
English- Classic and modern texts, comprehension paper, Atom Learning and SPAG (using active and passive voice)
Science- Learning how the immune system works
Art- Continuing to recreate Rene Magritte Artworks
History- Discuss events from WW1 - Signing up and propaganda posters
Jewish Studies 26th Cheshvan – 13th November
This week seems to have flown by. We have continued our study of Shemot Perek Bet, concentrating on the birth of Moshe and how his parents knew that he was destined for greatness. We spent time practising our Hebrew reading and reviewing some of the more complex reading rules and we wrote an essay about what we learn from Avraham. The children came up with a number of thoughtful and intelligent points in their essays, which they shared with their classmates and accepted feedback from each other about their work.
Have a lovely weekend and Shabbat Shalom!
Friday 6th November 2020
Our first week back after half term has flown by! This half term, we are going to be continuing to use our online platform of Atom Learning to distribute homework for children to practise at home. This will be for English, Verbal/ Non Verbal Reasoning and Maths. The children all have access to the website and should know their usernames and passwords- Please let us know if there are any difficulties when accessing the site. The children seem to be engaging well in Atom Learning and have completed homework set this week.
Tea Party nominations have now been reintroduced and I am happy to announce that this week's recipient was: Mia B. We look forward to selecting children each week who go above and beyond to demonstrate Kerem characteristics.
Please note that due to Covid-19 regulations, class windows will need to be open at all times. It is imperative that your child is dressed suitably- They are welcome to wear vests and thermals underneath their clothing so as to prevent them from feeling cold in the classroom.
Coming up next week:
Year 6 Kerem Cares leaders will be selecting new members for their chosen councils and their first council meeting should begin next week!
Children should have their lines learned off by heart for Remembrance Day (Wednesday). We will be rehearsing up until that day.
Mitzvah Day (Friday)- Children should come into school wearing red clothing and bring in £1 in order to support AJEX- Association of Jewish Ex-Service men and women.
The collections are as follows:
Non-perishable food items (tinned fruit, tuna or beans, pasta, rice etc) for Food Bank Aid (inc GIFT)
Reading Glasses (Africa)
stationery (pens, pencils, felt tips etc) (Goods for Good)
toiletries (shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, nappies) (Goods for Good)
Jewish Studies 19th Cheshvan – 6th November
This week in Jewish Studies, Year Six have continued to impress me with their enthusiasm for their Jewish learning. We learnt Shemot 2:1-2 in detail, with the children putting hugely impressive effort into their understanding and analysis of the text.
We have also discussed possible Chesed projects for next term and made Refuah Sheleimah cards for Rabbi Lord Sacks. We wrote an essay entitled “Explain why keeping Kosher is an important Mitzvah,” in which many of the children came up with really excellent suggestions and we had an interesting discussion during our Parashah lesson, having first reminded ourselves of the tunes we used to sing at Kabalat Shabbat. We also reviewed some of our basic general knowledge and discovered that not all the children were able to remember the Hebrew alphabet. I have challenged them all to learn it for next week.
I wish you all an enjoyable weekend and a Shabbat Shalom.
Keep safe and stay healthy.
Friday 23rd October 2020
Assessment week is officially over. Every child showed great perseverance and determination to complete papers for Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning, Maths and English.
I will be discussing their results with you all at parent’s evening after half term.
The children have been sent home with mini packs of practice papers with answers attached. These are optional and I do not expect or need them to hand these in after half term.
It may also be helpful to go over interview preparations with your child over the break to ensure they are confident when visiting schools.
Please remember to send in your secondary transfer forms!
I hope they have a well rested break.
Jewish Studies - 23rd October – 5th Cheshvan 5781
This week in Jewish Studies, Year 6 have really impressed me with the standard of work that they have produced. We began learning Sefer Shemot ch. 2 in Chumash. The class analysed the first few verses of the text, suggesting a number of interesting ideas and values that could be learned from these verses and making a number of wise hypotheses as to the deeper meaning of the Torah words.
We also wrote our first JS essay this week, for which the children had to write why Chanukah is such an important festival for the Jewish people. I was really impressed at the thought-provoking and sensitive points that the children made – donuts and dreidels didn’t get a single mention!
The children have their Parashah sheets to complete over the week and please do continue to encourage your children to keep up with their Hebrew reading practice – the link to the reading is on the JS Google Classroom.
Have a relaxing, enjoyable and safe half term and I look forward to seeing your remarkable children back at school after the holidays.
Friday 16th October 2020
This week the children re-visited Geometry including topics such as: translations, reflections, 2D shapes, 3D shapes and nets. This is something that will continue to pop up in their exams- not only for Maths but also for their Non Verbal Reasoning, so it would be helpful to keep going over this with them.
In English, the children were taken outside to observe and relish the changing season as we are beginning to enter Winter. They then went back to write about this experience. Some created very thought provoking poems, others stories and the rest an inward personal reflection. Overall it was an excellent learning experience, which we then related back to the poem 'Leisure' by William Davies.
Coming Up Next Week:
There will be assessments for English, Maths, Verbal and Non-verbal Reasoning. These will be discussed with you at our virtual parent's evening. I understand that the children have been working very hard not only at school but at home as well, which has really enhanced their overall learning in the recent weeks. We will also have a half termly WOW (word of the week) Quiz, as well as a half termly spelling quiz.
Next week a form will be sent out for you to complete; this will be used for their secondary transfer reports.
Any questions, please feel free to email.
Jewish Studies 16th October 2020 - 28th Tishrei 5781
This week in Jewish Studies we have been reviewing our basic Chumash skills, including prefixes and suffixes. We have been using JiTap to help reinforce our knowledge. In honour of Shabbat Bereishit we have considered the verse from Tehillim, Mah Rabu Maasecha HaShem – how wonderful is Your world, HaShem, and are creating posters to elucidate this passuk. We have looked more deeply into the waking up Tefillah of Modeh/modah ani, asking what it is we are giving gratitude for, recognising the good things in our lives and trying to appreciate all that we have.
Hebrew reading homework sheets are on Google Classroom – many of the children have regressed in their Hebrew reading due to little-to-no reading during lockdown. I urge you to please encourage your children to practise their reading – little and often is best.
Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom, Chodesh Tov and an enjoyable weekend.
Jewish Studies 21st Tishrei 5781 – 9th October 2020
It has been an unusual week in Jewish Studies for Year 6 this week as they learnt to cope with being taught in their classroom with me at home on Zoom. To their credit, they dealt with it amazingly well and - with thanks to some excellent ed-tech tools - we were able to work collaboratively online. We learnt some of the laws of building a kosher Sukkah, with the children producing their own ‘Ikea-style’ videos on how to build a halachically acceptable Sukkah (I’m sure your children will be happy to share these with you!). We also looked at a variety of unusual and creative Sukkahs, deciding whether or not they were halachically acceptable – this included a Sukkah on a boat, on a camel and on the back of a lorry.
Today we learnt about Simchat Torah and read the famous excerpt from Samuel Pepys' diary, written after he had inadvertently passed by a Shul on Simchat Torah, comparing what he witnessed there to 'brutish behaviour'!
Hebrew reading practice sheets were shared on Google Classroom a few weeks ago – please do encourage your children to keep up their Hebrew reading. For this term I am not setting regular reading work (as discussed at the curriculum evening) but please do try to read with them a couple of times a week in order to maintain their previously-achieved level.
I wish you all a Chag Same’ah – enjoy the end of this festive period and have a beautiful Shabbat too!
Friday 9th October 2020
Twice this week, Year 6 were able to visit and have their lunch in the Sukkah. It was a very special experience considering that this would be the final time they got to be inside the Kerem Sukkah.
Today I am sending home the children's lunch menu cards so that you can tell them in the morning what they will be having for lunch that day. Please make sure that they should only be bringing in fruit and vegetables for morning break.
Alongside this, we are giving the children a tube of smarties, which they will need to bring back to school. This will need to be completely filled with all the 20p coins they can find and fit inside the tube!
Coming up next week:
Maths: Geometry (shapes, angles, nets/cubes)
English: Story analysis, Grammar- practice paper
Science: Continuing mould experiment
Geography: Weathering and Erosion experiment
Art: Still life- Shading and light
Chag Sameach and Shabbat Shalom
Fri 2nd October - 14th Tishrei 5781
It has been a slightly unusual week this week as we have moved from the seriousness of Yom Kippur to the joyfulness of Sukkot, and from the 'normality' of teaching in school to teaching the children remotely once again. Nonetheless, the class have worked extremely hard and coped really well with having their teacher appear in giant-size on the whiteboard screen!
We began the week by examining the Torah Sources for both celebrating Sukkot and for using the Arbah Minim. We then moved on to explore the Halachic rules of constructing a kosher Sukkah - the different measures, materials and locations which are/are not permissible. The children then worked in groups to produce an 'ikea' video explaining how to construct a kosher Sukkah. They make fascinating viewing!
I wish you all Shabbat Shalom and Chag Same'ah - stay healthy and stay dry in your Sukkah!
Friday 2nd October 2020
This week we were proud to announce our new prefects! After reading each of their applications, we were astounded by the effort and thought they had placed in to the role/s they wanted to apply for. As one of their responsibilities, it is important for them to display their new prefect badges each day on their uniform. A huge well done to all of our prefects :)
It is important to recognise each child's resilience, where they have worked well together and supported one another in the classroom. It has been quite a turn around since the beginning of September, as now the children are slowly starting to mesh together and show a greater understanding of each other's feelings. I hope that this continues to flourish.
Coming up next week:
Maths: Decimals, Fractions and Percentages
English: Short writes, Analysing a classic text, Grammar- Semi-colons
Science: Mould experiment
Geography: Weathering and Erosion
Art: Still life drawing- self-portait
Friday 25th September 2020
The week began with a wave of prefect forms being placed on my desk. It was great to recognise all of the children's excitement as they put themselves forward for positions of responsibility. The children will be informed of the new prefects in a few weeks time.
Reading has been a key focus in Year 6 this week. Over the past few days we have incorporated D.E.A.R (drop everything and read) time into our daily timetable. This will support their vocabulary as well as help them understand different texts and themes. I would therefore wish for them to bring their books to and from school daily so they can take part in this activity.
Thank you for making the time this week to speak with me about your child- these proved very helpful.
Topics coming up next week:
Maths: 4 operations with fractions
English: Short writes, Modern Texts, Grammar - Colons and Words of the week.
Science: Identifying Microorganisms
Geography: Weathering and Erosion
Art: Drawing from still life
Jewish Studies – 7th Tishrei – 25th September
In Jewish Studies this week, the children have continued to impress me with their positive attitudes and enthusiasm to learn. We have been focussing on Yom Kippur across the week, including studying the relevant verses in Vayikra which instruct us about the Mitzvot of Yom Kippur and learning a text from the Mishna regarding who will and who won’t be forgiven by HaShem on Yom Kippur. We also discussed why so many famous Jewish athletes, actors etc choose to keep Yom Kippur even at the expense of their day jobs and what it is about Yom Kippur which makes its observance so crucial for Jews everywhere.
I wish you all an easy and meaningful fast and a beautiful, relaxing Shabbat!
18th September 2020
In Maths the children where using their multiplication and division skills to solve problems involving decimals. These skills were challenged later in the week with reasoning problems as well as exam based questions.
In English the children unpicked a descriptive piece about a location, which they then had to replicate using a different location. We received excellent pieces of writing from them which we were very pleased with.
The topic for Science this year is All living things, so year 6 had started learning the 7 life processes followed by annotating and understanding plant and animal cells. Next week we will be using microscopes and researching a famous microbiologist, which I am sure they will all enjoy.
Our artist this term is Paul Cezanne. For this children have begun to study his work by understanding how he uses colour, texture and movement in his work. I then took the children outside to draw/sketch in the style of Cezanne, which turned out very well. As for next week, children will be bringing in a small item from home in order to complete a still life drawing. I hope to share these with you in the coming weeks.
Please see below what is coming up next week:
Over the coming days I will be sending emails requesting to meet with each of you to discuss where the children are in terms of their assessment results as well as any additional support or plan put in place.
I look forward to speaking with each of you.
Shana Tova and Shabbat Shalom
Friday 11th September 2020
It was lovely 'meeting' you all on Wednesday during our Meet the Teacher evening. It definitely felt strange seeing you all on a screen rather than in person but I hope it was helpful nonetheless.
We are now reaching the end of our first full week into year 6 and I cannot stress enough how amazing it has been to get to know the class as a whole and find out about their individual personalities. I hope they are all ready for the year ahead and are willing to put in the work to help them be successful in everything they do.
This week we have been incorporating a lot of PSHE lessons based on friendships. These lessons will be ongoing as I hope that the children can learn to empathise with each other and work together to support and uplift one another. I will keep you updated about their progress.
There are a few requests that I would like to share with you. The first is that children should be bringing in two snacks for morning break, as they often tend to be hungry when coming in from break. The second is to be wearing correct school uniform: School shoes- not trainers unless there has been a letter written to us to let us know new school shoes are being ordered and Tzitzit and Kippot (boys).
Have a restful weekend and Shabbat Shalom!
Jewish Studies - 11th September 2020 - 22nd Elul 5780
After just one week back, it feels like we have never been away. It's good to have lockdown behind us, and here's praying that this school year and new Jewish year are meaningful, positive and filled with 'togetherness' and good health.
In Year Six this week we have been focussing on two main areas - i) our roots and our personal connection to the Torah and Judaism and ii) Rosh HaShanah. We have been using the edtech tool called Sutori which we have greatly enjoyed and, amongst other things, have created a mosaic of our Jewish selves, a poster for Teshuvah, Tefillah and Tsedakah, as well as deciding why it is an apple - rather than any other fruit - which we dip into honey. We will be looking into some of the Rabbinic sources on this topic next week as well as examining the ten given reasons for why we blow a Shofar on Rosh HaShanah (Do you know why?).
Also, please note that the children's Hebrew reading homework is published on the JS Google Classroom - please do encourage your children to keep up their Hebrew reading practice.
Wishing you all a Shabbat Shalom and a lovely weekend - enjoy the sunshine .
It has been great to see all of the children back where they belong and it has been a pleasure actually seeing their faces in person. They have settled in well over the past two days and are slowly but surely getting back into the routine of being at school. I am looking forward to speaking with you all at 'Meet' the teacher evening on Wednesday - even though we have now moved to Zoom calls, I will always be available to speak with you if you have any questions.
Please can I just remind the children to bring in a substantial snack for morning break and perhaps rice cakes to keep them going until lunch. I think this would really help their concentration in class.