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Year 4

Friday 14th June

 

It has been a busy, albeit short, week. 

 

It was wonderful to see so many parents at our learning event on Tuesday morning, getting ready for Shavuot. The children enjoyed working out the prices of the many items and the scratch card reveals were exciting! 

 

In maths this week, we have been learning about lines of symmetry in polygons (shapes), working hard to understand which shapes have one line of symmetry, which have more than one, and which have none at all. The children also completed shapes with lines of symmetry, using their problem solving skills to determine what the missing half of the shape would look like. They enjoyed colouring squares to make symmetrical patterns, finding it exciting when the pattern came together.

 

In English, we have been creating story mountains for Kaspar Prince of Cats, determining which moments in the book are key events of the story and which parts add detail. We put this into practise when, using our story mountains from last week on Jack and the Beanstalk, the children retold the story, adding detail to the simple plans they had created on their story mountains. We continued reading Kaspar and are up to the main problem of the story - the sinking of the Titanic. We ended on a cliffhanger and the children are very excited to continue the story.

 

Our history lesson saw us examining portraits of Henry VIII for the information they can give us about this iconic figure. We discussed how, although we know so much about the king, we can learn a lot from primary sources and these can be used to support our previous learning. The children were excited to discover the number of different portraits of Henry and how, even though they all look different, they all depict the same person and provide an historian with a wealth of information.

 

Next Tuesday is sports day. The event is taking place at The Wilf Slack Sport Ground, East End Road, N3 2LE and all students should arrive around 9am. Please ensure your child has a packed lunch. A letter was emailed on the 9th May detailing more information. 

 

Please note, there will not be a before school session on Tuesday as our day begins at the sports ground.

 

Shabbat shalom, 

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins.

 

Friday 7th June

 

What a great week back we have all had, full of fun and learning. It was wonderful to see so many of the children’s parents at the Rosh Chodesh learning this morning, thank you for joining us. The children really enjoyed learning with their parents and giving a lovely rendition of hallel in tefillah. Thank you also to those who joined us for our internet safety workshop this afternoon. Internet safety is so important in the world and is something that the children have worked on during the year in computing lessons, but it was so valuable for them to have the opportunity to understand this alongside their parents and gain the skills to be safe in the wider world. 

 

Speaking of safety, the children were fortunate to have had a first aid training session on Wednesday, allowing them to continue and build on their learning from last year. The children were taught important first aid such as applying bandages to wounds and CPR, and were reminded that even calling for help or 999 is still first aid. They worked hard throughout and were excited to learn these skills that they could use to help people. 

 

In maths this week the children have been learning about shapes and angles. We started by physically demonstrating clockwise and anti-clockwise as well as quarter, half, three-quarter and full turns. This then gave the children the knowledge to understand acute, obtuse and right angles and identify them. We moved on to learn about triangles (which was excitedly recognised as a compound word made up of tri or three and angles) and quadrilaterals. They discussed the properties of equilateral, isosceles, scalene and right-angled triangles and worked on identifying them. Not only that, the children applied their knowledge in order to solve problems such as working out the perimeter of shapes. It was good to see their love of learning come through in lessons. 

 

In English, we have been continuing our focus on Kaspar, Prince of Cats. We read more of the story and discussed a ‘story mountain’ and how what we are currently reading (the chapter entitled: Stowaway) falls into the build up of the story and we have not yet encountered our main problem. We also looked at how dialogue can move a story forward and give us information about what is going to happen next in the story. The children are enjoying Kaspar and getting a lot out of the unit. 

 

In computing the children were  introduced to Spheros - ball shaped robots that the children can ‘drive’ using an app on their iPads. They all enjoyed making the Sphero follow their commands, changing colour and direction. Some groups even made their Speros complete obstacle courses or mazes! We are very lucky to have such a fantastic resource for the children to practice their computing skills on!

 

We created circuits in science with handmade switches. Each pair was given a different type of switch to create out of cardboard, split pins and paperclips or binder clips and worked hard showing persistence to make a bulb light up. They enjoyed the practical aspect of the lesson and worked hard to understand the purpose of switches in circuits, comparing their own circuits and switches to ones that they used in daily life such as a light switch. We discussed how switching components off can help us save energy which is incredibly important and can help save the environment. 

 

In spelling the children learned about words with the /f/ sound spelled ph. 

  • cacophony 
  • paragraph 
  • pharaoh 
  • pharmacist 
  • phenomenon 
  • phlegm 
  • phobia 
  • physical 
  • physiotherapy 
  • symphony 

The common exception words were: particular, peculiar, perhaps, popular

 

This week also saw the return of Forest School. It is truly wonderful to see the children getting so involved with nature and having such a wonderful time playing games needing teamwork such as using ‘lily pads’ to cross the ‘river’ (see pictures) and finding beetles and bugs in the long grass. Each session begins with an introspective moment where the children think about how they are feeling and work on using language to voice that. 

 

Next week is a shorter week because of Shavuot on Wednesday and Thursday. We finish school at 1pm on Tuesday and have a lot of exciting Jewish learning opportunities before that to get ready for Shavuot. 

 

Reminders

  • As the weather gets warmer, please remember to send your child in with a water bottle every day. 
  • It can sometimes get cooler during the day so please send your child in with a jumper in their bag if they are not wearing one when they get to school. 
  • Many children need items for their pencil box, such as a glue, a pen, ruler or a number of items. Please ask them how much money they need to replace these items.
  • We have begun to notice that children have started to come to school wearing trainers. This is not part of our school uniform, though completely black trainers are allowed. These must not have a white or grey (or any other colour) sole, tick, stripes etc. Many thanks for your support with this.

 

It has been a pleasure to be back with the class after a couple of weeks away and we are looking forward to a fantastic and busy few weeks as we get to the end of the school year.

 

Shabbat shalom,

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins

 

 

Friday 24th May 2024

 

This has been a lovely week in Year 4, and the children have worked productively in their lessons. 

 

In maths this week we learned about partitioning a ‘whole’ into tenths and hundredths, eg. 0.8 (8 tenths) + 0.2 (2 tenths) = 1, and 0.68 (68 hundredths, or 6 tenths and 8 hundredths) + 0.32 = 1. Moving on from this, we learned about decimal equivalents for ½  (0.5), ¼ (0.25), and ¾ (0.75). They  also practised how to calculate fractions of amounts and quantities, such as ⅔ of 18.

 

In English lessons we read chapters 3 and 4 of Kaspar Prince of Cats. They learned about present perfect tense and used this to write an informal note to Lizziebeth from Johnny. They also practised writing multi-clause sentences using subordinating conjunctions, such as when, because, while, unless, if, although, using the context of the story.

 

In computing the children continued to hone their coding skills using the programme ‘Move the Turtle’. 

 

In DT (Design and Technology) we explored the design aspects of different types of torches, and how they differ according to their intended uses and the needs of their user. The children each received the profile of a client in need of a torch for a specific purpose, and the children’s task was to design a torch to fit this brief. They all did a brilliant job and it was fantastic to see different ideas the pupils came up with.

 

This week in our spelling lesson we continued to learn about words with the suffix –ous. When there is an ‘ee’ sound before the ous ending, the ending of these words will usually be spelled -ious, although some words are spelled eous. If the root word ends with ge, a final ‘e’ must be kept if the  sound of ‘g’ is to be kept, eg. outrage- outrageous

  • courageous 
  • outrageous 
  • advantageous 
  • gorgeous
  • courteous
  • spontaneous
  • hideous
  • nauseous
  • righteous
  • simultaneous

 

Topic/ Common Exception Words: 

  • occasionally
  • often
  • opposite
  • ordinary

 

After half term, Year 4 will be having weekly forest school sessions every Thursday, starting on 6th June. The PE uniform days will be Tuesday (for PE) and Thursday (for forest school). 

 

We look forward to seeing the children after half term for the final stretch of Year 4!

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 17th May 2024

 

On Monday Year 4 went to the Yom Hazikaron Tekes (ceremony), which was incredibly moving and especially poignant this year. It was lovely to see some parents from our class in attendance. This was then followed by Yom Ha'azmaut on Tuesday, where the children had a brilliant day celebrating! After tefillah and Hallel, the children took part in an art activity inspired by the artist and sculptor Yaacov Agam, followed by a PE lesson with Mr Antony. They then decorated beautiful Hamsas with gems and beads. Later, we participated in a whole-school sing-along, Israeli dancing and even a flag-march in the playground. It was a really special  time celebrating together.

 

In maths, lessons the children learned about hundredths this week. We looked at hundredths as fractions, with a denominator of 100, and the children were reminded that this means that a ‘whole’ has been split into 100 equal parts. The children then learned about hundredths as decimals. We used a place value chart to do this and to help the children understand the place value of this new column. Please ensure that this is used for any work at home, as we have spotted a lot of confusion and unhelpful misconceptions. This should also be used when dividing numbers by 10 or 100, with the digits moving one (when dividing by 10) or 2 (when dividing by 100) place value columns to the right.

 

In English, we are all enjoying reading the story Kaspar Prince of Cats by Michael Morpurgo. The children recapped their understanding of noun phrases, eg. the wooden bench, identifying these in Chapters 1 and 2, and noticing how they are woven into the text, rather than in one part where description takes place. The children then extended some of these by adding additional information, eg. the wooden bench, which sat under the oak tree, or the black cat, with glossy fur and a red leather collar. The class then explored Johnny Trott’s feelings and emotions throughout Chapter 2. We plotted these on a graph to show the highs and lows of the chapter, finding evidence in the text to annotate how Johnny was feeling at key times.

 

In science, we learned more about electrical circuits, and learned about the components used to create them. The children then made a variety of different circuits themselves using cells (batteries), wires, bulbs and buzzers. They investigated how to make more complex circuits using for example two lightbulbs or a lightbulb and a buzzer, identifying extra components that were needed to complete the circuit. 

 

In history, the children found out about the reign of Henry VII and the many problems he faced as king.

 

Our spelling rule this week saw us learn about words with the suffix ‘ous’ or ‘ious’.

  • serious
  • famous 
  • obvious
  • curious 
  • dangerous
  • enormous 
  • jealous
  • poisonous 
  • various 
  • nervous

Topic/ Common Exception Words: 

  • explore
  • chocolate
  • special
  • question

 

The Kerem Shabbaton takes place this Shabbat, 18th May in HGSS. A number of Kerem pupils both past and present will be taking part in the service, and all current Kerem pupils in attendance that morning (after the children's services) will be invited to join a Kerem Choir to sing to and with the community. The service will be followed by a special celebratory kiddush. We hope to see many of you there! In houses tefillah this week, the children were each presented with a special Kerem 75 badge, it would be wonderful if the children wore these on Shabbat.

 

As Miss Simon is nearing the end stages of her teacher training, she has not been with us in class this week but instead been on her final placement. Next week she will also be out of the classroom as she will be supporting the Year 6’s with their end of year trip. She will be back with us after half term.

 

Shabbat Shalom, wishing you all a fantastic weekend,

 

The Year 4 Team

 

Friday 10th May

 

It has been wonderful to see everyone again after the Pesach holiday. We have had a fantastic first week back. 

 

We welcomed a new teaching assistant to the classroom, Mrs Rosenthal, who is going to be with us for the rest of the school year. The children are excited to have an additional adult in their classroom, supporting their learning. 

 

In maths, we have started our new topic of decimals. The children used place value grids  and counters to understand the concepts of decimalisation before applying it in their division of one and two digit numbers by ten. We revisited Gattegno charts to help us not only understand place value with decimals but also to support our division. A lot of good quality work was achieved in their lessons, largely due to the curiosity and interest in learning this topic.

 

Electricity is our science topic this term. The children explored how often we use electricity in our daily lives. We then challenged them to think of what we would do if there was no electricity, thinking about how normal events like washing our clothes, making a cup of tea, or lighting or homes would be different before electricity was common. The children looked at the differences between mains and battery power and sorted household items and appliances into categories based on their power. We looked at different sources of electrical power - from nuclear power to solar power - and even explained the rules on solar panels on houses in Hampstead Garden Suburb! 

 

Our DT topic is torch making. The children are able to utilise the learning from their science lessons each week to support their understanding when learning about parts of a torch and how different torches are used for different purposes and by different people. 

 

The children had a lot of fun in our history lesson, acting out the Battle of Bosworth when Richard III was defeated by Henry Tudor. The children displayed tableaus of important aspects of the battle, including the discrepancy in numbers between the fighting sides, the power that Lord Thomas Stanley had over the battle, the death of Henry Tudor’s flagbearer, and the crowning of King Henry VII. 

 

In English we have begun reading Kaspar Prince of Cats. As well as reading the first chapter and making predictions based on the front cover of the book and the chapter, we also explored the history behind the book. The children related what they had learnt in science about the invention of electricity and what the home looked like before electricity was widespread to the 1912 setting of the book. Some children mentioned that they had brought hte book to read at home and, although we have a number of copies at school, it can be beneficial for the children to have their own copy of the book to read at home. 

 

Next week is Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut. All parents are invited to join us for the Yom Hazikaron Tekes. An email with an RSVP was sent out on 7th May if you would like to attend. On Tuesday, Kerem are celebrating Yom Ha’atzmaut with many exciting activities planned by the Ivrit and JS department.

Miss Simon is not going to be at school next week as she is going to be on a placement at another school. Mrs Collins will still be with the class as normal. 

 

We hope you have a lovely weekend.

Shabbat shalom,

 

Miss Simon, Mrs Collins and the Year 4 Team.

 

Friday 12th April

 

It has been a busy and emotional end to our long spring term. 

 

We said goodbye to two members of Year 4 this week. The first is Mrs Lenz, who has been with the class since Year 2! She spent her last day as the class teaching assistant at an amazing model seder and a wonderful picnic in Ivrit. We will still be seeing her as a volunteer next term but we look forward to welcoming our new teaching assistant in the new term. We also bid farewell to Ely who is leaving us to go to a new school.

 

This week has seen the children work hard to complete assessments in English and maths. They all showed resilience and persistence in getting through these tricky tests and we are incredibly proud of the work that they have put in. 

 

In English this week, the children were split into groups to rewrite a stanza of The Highwayman into prose, in order to understand that narrative poetry tells a story. This was a difficult task but the children rose to the challenge and, together, have rewritten the entire part 1 of The Highwayman poem which will be used for a display in the coming term. Not only that, the children used their artistic skills to draw and paint scenes and characters from the poem. They all enjoyed using the descriptive language to inspire their artwork.

 

We had an exciting visit from Tribe, who came in to do an escape room style workshop with the children. They had to use their knowledge of the pesach story and of ancient Egypt to solve puzzles and escape from Pharaoh. Working in teams, the children showed excellent collaboration with each other and worked hard to solve the puzzles. 

 

They also took part in the model seder on Thursday. The children sat with their siblings in house tables and celebrated pesach together. They loved ‘selling’ their chametz, drinking four glasses of wine (grape juice) and singing song after song accompanied by Rabbi Louis on the piano. A few even gave wonderful dvar torahs, showing their risk taking skills by standing up in front of the whole school and delivering their speech. 

 

The children (and adults) all enjoyed the Ivrit picnic on a sunny afternoon in the playground. It was a lot of fun eating all the wonderful food that the children brought in to share and they all practised their Ivrit skills whilst asking for the wide variety of food on offer. It was a wonderful afternoon.

 

In the new term,  new expectations will be put into place for the children when they are playing champ. This is to ensure the safety and happiness of all the players. The expectations have been explained to the children and all adults on duty will be following the same expectations. These are going to be across the entire school. 

 

Over the holidays, we are sending out optional, additional learning for the children to do for maths and English. The English includes comprehension style questions and the maths involves fun learning opportunities to solve puzzles. This is a good way for the children to hone their skills without being too much work or anything to be worried about. There is no pressure for them to complete any or all of the activities but, if they want to hand it in, we would be happy to see their work. They should do it on lined paper with all the normal presentation expectations and ensure that their name is on each page. The children must ensure they are reading for at least five minutes every day. 

 

We hope you have a restful holiday and we wish you a chag kasher v’sameach. 

 

Shabbat shalom,

The Year 4 Team

 

Friday 5th April 2024

 

The children all settled down well to working this week, despite the long weekend!

 

In maths, the children continued to focus on fractions, looking at fraction families and equivalent fractions. They all enjoyed using the concrete manipulatives that we have in the classroom to support learning and these really helped embed understanding of this tricky concept. We also worked on adding and subtracting fractions with the same denominator, including mixed numbrs and improper fractions. We had a problem solving lesson that the children all enjoyed as it tested their understanding of the concepts and allowed them to practice their problem solving skills.

 

We did some excellent work on the Highwayman poem in English which culminated in performances of the first five stanzas of part 1 of the Highwayman. The children collaborated well in their groups and came up with brilliant performances, highlighting the emotive nature of the poem and retelling the story very well. We had some gallant and galloping highwaymen, some long-haired landlords daughters, some jealous ostlers and narrators. There were also a large number of ‘gusty trees’ in the classroom!

 

Our guided reading text was chapter 1 of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by CS Lewis. The children worked hard to understand the text and extract evidence to support answers that they gave to questions like ‘do you think Lucy should have been going through someone else’s wardrobe?’ They also summarised the character of Mr Tumnus into one word, using evidence from the text to justify their answer. These verbal comprehension lessons are a really good way to model answers and ensure the children are able to pick out important information from good quality texts. A number of children expressed an interest in continuing to read the books!

 

In geography the children continued to learn about where our clothes come from. They looked at a variety of different items of clothing, identifying where each one was made on the care label and making a list and a tally chart to show this. Most of the clothes were made in Bangladesh, and all of them were made in Asia. The children then used an atlas to find, colour and label these countries on a world map, drawing a line to represent the journey that the clothes have made to get to the UK. 

 

In D&T, the children used their previously cut pattern pieces to begin to sew their very own Egyptian slippers based on the previous class text of Egyptian Cinderella. A lot of resilience was displayed throughout the process, especially with the tricky task of embroidery. It was great to see how much effort was put into the sewing and embroidering of their slippers and how much the children wanted to ensure they were proud of what they had created. Have a look at the photos below to see them at work!

 

We hope you have a lovely weekend. 

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins

 

Thursday 28th March

 

What a week!

 

Purim started the week off with a splash of colour. The children looked incredible in their costumes and we all had a fantastic day. We started with whole-school tefilah, which is always special. The children then made their own hamantaschen, carefully weighing out the ingredients and collaborating with their group to make sure that jobs were distributed fairly. After that, the children had a Zumba session in aid of Jewish Care- if you have any sponsorship money at home, please send this to school. We also made masks and took part in the school’s Purim parade. In the afternoon, the children decorated and swapped mishloach manot, and had a session with an entertainer. We all had a brilliant day.

 

In English lessons this week, the children were introduced to narrative poetry - poems that tell a story. They read the narrative poem The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes and were given some of the historical context of the poem and who/ what the highwaymen were. Time was spent defining unfamiliar words and phrases, and summarising the story of the poem. They then wrote a description of the atmosphere in the setting of the poem, using words and phrases from the text as well as their own vocabulary.

 

In maths lessons the children continued to learn about fractions, and were introduced to the concept of improper fractions. The children know that a proper fraction is when the numerator is smaller than the denominator, and an improper fraction is when the numerator is greater than the denominator, and we have extended this to include the conceptual understanding that this means that proper fractions are less than one whole, whereas improper fractions are more than one whole. For example ⅞  is less than one, and 11/8 (eleven eighths) is equal to 1 ⅜ (one and three eights), so more than one. 

 

We planned our new investigation in Science and spent some time in the STEAM lab. The children learned about the impact of heating and cooling, and that some substances will change their state when heated or cooled. We began with the question ‘do all types of chocolate melt at the same temperature?’ and wrote a prediction for what we thought might happen and why. In the STEAM lab the children tried this out for themselves, each receiving some warm water and a small foil container to watch their chocolate melt in. Each child received a piece of either white, milk or dark chocolate, and timed how long it took to melt, observing the changes taking place in the chocolate.

 

We had an exciting return to our DT project this week, and the children learned about sewing patterns, why they are needed in the production of clothes, and made their own pattern for their Egyptian slipper using the design they have made. Have a look at the photos below to see them at work!

 

We hope you all have a wonderful Bank Holiday weekend and look forward to seeing the children back at school on Tuesday.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 22nd March 

 

It has been a busy week at school. The children have all worked incredibly hard all week in all their lessons and produced fantastic work that they can definitely be proud of. 

 

On Thursday we all came together at the end of the day to say the Shema as a school. In doing this, we joined with people all around the world, all saying the Shema at the same time on the fast of Esther in order to give our prayers the most meaning. We had all of Israel in mind as we prayed for peace as a community. 

 

In maths this week we have been studying fractions - looking at mixed numbers on a number line and comparing the mixed numbers to work out which are larger or smaller. The children collaborated well whilst working on placing numbers on the number lines, recalling the knowledge that was covered earlier in the year with intervals and midpoints. Similarly, the effort and curiosity with which the children approached comparing and ordering mixed numbers was delightful and showcased their love of learning. We have also done a lot of work on times tables, encouraging the children to do timed times tables test in order to practice. The children should be practising their tables every day and recapping those tables that they are not as confident with. 

 

We finished our non-chronological reports on life in ancient Egypt this week in English. The children worked hard to transform their notes from last week into full sentences and paragraphs, using conjunctions and fronted adverbials to enhance their writing. The information that was included in the non-chronological reports was fascinating and showed how interested the children were in their research and the topic as a whole. They used all of the features of a non-fiction text that have been learnt in the last few weeks, ensuring they had subheadings and paragraphs that included specific details. Many of them also included wonderful drawings to bring their reports together!

 

Our word of the week this week was bonus and some children did use this word in their writing. Many managed to successfully use it in their non-chronological reports - the number of ‘bonus facts’ was really astounding!

 

This week also saw the class get stuck into an important PSHE lesson about what to do when someone is mean - how to react and how to support themselves. The children enjoy the PSHE lessons, especially when they are able to sit together in a circle and share their thoughts and ideas. The children are able to open up in these sessions and they are always reminded of the importance of kindness. 

 

Please ensure that children are able to make the most of their soft start time by arriving as near to 08:30 as possible. There are always tasks for the children to be completing as well as giving them time to sort themselves out and go to the toilet before the school day begins. 


 

Shabbat Shalom and Purim Sameach,

 

Mrs Collins and Miss Simon

 

Friday 15th March

 

It has been a wonderful week and we are so impressed with all the hard work that the children have put into their endangered animal posters. They look fantastic and some of them have presented their posters and information to the class. We look forward to the rest of the children presenting their beautiful posters over the next week or so. 

 

Monday saw us complete our learning on the topic of ancient Egypt. Some excellent factfiles on ancient Egyptian gods and goddesses were produced by the children using information from a number of different sources. Then they tackled the tricky challenge of using a primary source such as to get information. The children were all historians and approached the task analytically, coming up with insightful ideas about the usefulness of the source. 

 

This week in maths we have begun to focus on the topic of fractions. The children recapped their understanding of the whole. When the whole is divided into equal parts, each part becomes a fraction. We also worked on mixed numbers, where a whole number and a fraction is used together, such as 2 ½  - both counting and partitioning these. The children worked so hard this week and we will continue to look at this topic next week.

 

In English, the children have been looking at non-chronological reports. They started by investigating conjunctions and how to join two sentences together to create one longer sentence with multiple ideas. Then they worked on finding information that will go into their reports. The subheadings they used were food, clothing, houses, entertainment and jobs.

 

We conducted an investigation in science this week, looking at the weight of gases in fizzy drinks. The children weighed the drinks immediately out of the bottle and then again after they had stirred them and got all the bubbles out. By doing this, we could conclude that gases do have a weight, as the drinks weighed less once the bubbles (carbon dioxide) had gone. 

 

We hope you have a lovely weekend. 

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins

 

Friday 8th March

 

Year 4 have really enjoyed celebrating book week this week. From shared reads with different teachers, reading with their Kerem house team, to learning about non-fiction texts, the children enjoyed a range of learning opportunities. We were so lucky to have had a visit from the author Nikki Sheehan who inspired the children to write about their memories in a guided session with her. It was wonderful to see the children all dressed up as characters from non-fiction texts. We know that book week is always exciting and we are very grateful to Ms Rose for organising such an amazing one. Both children and staff particularly enjoyed the daily ‘masked reader’ videos.

 

Not only that, Year 4 were joined by Hannah from The United Synagogue Chesed Team and Rafi from Tribe to help us think about the mitzvot of Purim. The children had the opportunity to pack Mishloach Manot boxes which will be distributed to Jewish families in need. As well as revisiting the mitzvah of Mishloach Manot, the children learnt about ruet, the concept of friendship and offering friendship through giving Mishloach Manot - both to those we know and those that we don’t. They made insightful comments about the importance of fulfilling mitzvot and looking after others. In total Year 4 packed 132 boxes!

 

It was lovely to see so many parents at the showcase this week. The children are so proud of their work and love being able to show it off to you. 

 

All this being said, lessons were not neglected this week! In maths, the children continued their topic of perimeter, working out the perimeters of rectilinear shapes with missing lengths and the perimeters of regular and irregular polygons. We are proud of the effort the children put in to these difficult topics each lesson.

 

In English, we focussed on the theme of book week - non-fiction texts - and created our own fact files of a person. The children learnt about the features of a non-fiction text before researching the person that they chose to dress up as for book day. They used all of this knowledge to put together fact files about their person, ensuring that they were using the features of non-fiction texts as well as all of the grammatical structures that we have covered this term. 

 

In science, we covered the third state of matter- gases. This week we were writing up an experiment that we will be doing next week, in which the children are going to investigate whether gases weigh anything. The children have so much curiosity about the world around them and the enthusiasm with which they approach science is wonderful. 

 

In computing, we began a new topic on an app called Move the Turtle. Using their collaborative skills, each table directed one of their number to walk around the table following instructions given. This showed the children the importance of clear instruction, something which is important when coding. After that, they began to work on Move the Turtle, getting to grips with the new style of coding that was expected of them. We will be using this app to teach the children how to draw symbols and logos in code. 

 

This week also saw the culmination of our doughnut project! The children were incredibly excited to finally build the class doughnut that we designed last week. Each child was able to use the ingredients in their own way to create their smores doughnut and we were amazed by the creativity. There was a lot of perseverance and resilience on display throughout the lesson when something would not go to plan and we were impressed with the childrens’ abilities to think on their feet. 

 

This week, the childrens’ homework is to use the great information that they found and wrote in their English homework books to create a poster about their endangered animal. All of the information is on Google classroom and has been discussed with the children. 

 

Please ensure that your children are able to buy stationary they need for their pencil pots. We have had many children without pens this week and it is somewhat disruptive to their learning. We suggest that they have 50p in their bag so that they can replace an empty pen in a timely manner.

 

We hope you have a lovely weekend. 

 

Shabbat Shalom,

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins

 

Friday 1st March 

 

It has been a busy first week back after the holidays. It was lovely to see so many of you at the Seed Clean Speech morning on Thursday. We know the children enjoy these workshops and we are glad that you were able to share in their learning. 

 

The children have been completing reading and writing assessments in English this week. They have all worked incredibly hard throughout the week to ensure they showcased their best work and we are proud of their mature approach to these tests. 

 

In maths we have been working on the perimeter of rectilinear shapes. It was amazing to see the understanding the children have of shape and how quickly they were able to grasp the tricky concepts that were being taught. We discussed how to draw shapes that needed to have a specific perimeter and how to work out the perimeter of shapes that had already been drawn. 

 

The children had an engaging and hands-on experience with Vex robots in our computing lesson. They were given the option to use a handheld coding device or create their own code on iPads, directing the Vex robots to follow their instructions. The coding adventure didn't stop there – the children applied their skills to play a lively game of football with their Vex robots and a ping pong ball. The progression of their coding abilities and the joy they experienced while honing this valuable skill were evident throughout the lesson. These practical experiences not only make learning computing enjoyable but also contribute to the development of essential problem-solving and logical thinking skills. 

 

In science the children enjoyed a practical lesson in the steam lab. We have started a new topic on states of matter and the children used this weeks lesson to learn about the properties of solids and liquids. We began the lesson with discussing if rice is a solid or a liquid. The children came up with many thoughts, opinions and questions. Then they were given the opportunity to experiment with rice and other food items to investigate their states of matter. 

 

In Geography the children have been introduced to our new topic- Where do our clothes come from? We began with a lesson about globalisation and explore the meaning of this (‘the increasing connections between places and people across the planet), what this looks like today, and factors such as advances in technology and transport that have enabled this.

 

We have also discussed the doughnut project with the children, collating all their ideas before deciding on a class doughnut that we are all going to be creating on Friday 8th March. The children were, understandably, excited and are looking forward to the culmination of their DT project next week.

 

The homework for this week is different to usual. The children will be working on a science project on endangered animals. Information on the project is on google classroom and we have discussed what is expected during class. We are excited to read all the information the children have found out on Tuesday when the first part of the homework is due in. 

 

Please ensure that your children are able to buy stationary they need for their pencil pots. We have had many children without pens this week and it is somewhat disruptive to their learning. We suggest that they have 50p in their bag so that they can replace an empty pen in a timely manner.

 

Next week is Book Week and we are looking forward to sharing a number of engaging activities with the children, including the non-fiction dress-up day on Wednesday. Please refer to the email sent on 16th February for more details. 

 

A polite reminder that we are not able to consistently check emails throughout the day. Please be mindful of this when contacting us about time-sensitive matters, such as pickup or clubs. We are often only seeing these some time after the school day has finished.

 

We hope you have a restful weekend.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

Miss Simon and Mrs Collins



 

Friday 16th February

 

What a fun filled week we have all had!

 

This week was our school wide faces of Israel week where the children were learning all about Russian Jews in Israel. The children had a fantastic time learning Russian dances such as the Hora and traditional Russian dance steps. They also learnt all about the geography of Russia and the climate of this enormous country. We talked about Russia post USSR and the Jewish movement to Israel which the children all found incredibly interesting. We were lucky to have a wonderful visitor - Mrs Gubbay - who led a fascinating discussion about her life in Russia and making Aliyah to Israel. 

The children always love these faces of Israel lessons and we want to thank the Ivrit department for organising such a brilliant week. 

 

We all enjoyed our school trip to Whipsnade Zoo on Monday. The adventure began with a captivating workshop led by a ZSL educator, Marcus. During this engaging session, the children learned about conservation and delved into the topic of animal habitats and adaptations. They had the opportunity to examine models of different animal skulls, and the highlight for many was the colossal hippopotamus skull! The session sparked excitement as the children explored the adaptations that enable these animals to thrive in their respective habitats.

 

Following the workshop, we explored the zoo, and the children had a fantastic time at the giraffe viewing platform, enabling them to view them at giraffe's head height. Their enthusiasm was clear as they measured themselves against giraffe vertebrae on display. The African hunting dogs provided another highlight, with the children joyfully watching the dogs race around their enclosure. Despite not spotting the gorillas outdoors, the children marvelled at the climbing frame within their enclosure.

 

After a restful lunch break, our journey continued to the aquarium and butterfly house. The children immersed themselves in the underwater world, playing hide and seek with geckos and lizards, and viewing the vibrant fish in the aquarium. The real magic happened in the butterfly house, where the children encountered blue morpho butterflies – a species they had learned about during our rainforest topic. The excitement reached a peak when one of these beautiful butterflies landed on a member of our class, creating an unforgettable moment for everyone. 

 

We continued our work on animal adaptations and habitats by looking at endangered animals in our timetabled science lesson this week. The children learnt about the Red List and the designation of animals on this list which explains the extent to which we should be worried about their extinction. The children learnt a lot in this lesson and were also introduced to a project that will be taking place after the half term holiday in which the children will create their own informative posters on an endangered animal. We know they are excited to begin this and will be sending out more information after the holiday.

 

In our maths lessons this week, we concluded our exploration of multiplication and division by tackling correspondence problems, dividing numbers by 1 and themselves, and multiplying three numbers together. The children demonstrated admirable effort, engaging with concrete manipulatives like counters to enhance their understanding of these challenging concepts. 

Although our weekly times tables lessons are concluding after the half-term break, we encourage the children to persist in practising their times tables regularly, as this foundational skill will continue to benefit them throughout their mathematical journey.

 

In English, the children have been hard at work crafting their Egyptian Cinderella stories. Armed with the well-thought-out plans and the array of grammar and creative writing techniques we've explored this half-term, the students poured their creativity into their narratives. Following the completion of their stories, we delved into the important process of editing. The children used a checklist to ensure the incorporation of all the features we've discussed. This exercise not only honed their reflective skills but also empowered them to enhance the quality of their writing.

 

The children created vibrant and textured collages inspired by the fur and coats of animals. Building on the work they started in previous lessons, the students completed their collages with resourcefulness and persistence. These colourful pieces are now proudly on display in the corridor at school, creating a visual feast for all to enjoy. We can sense the excitement among the children as they see their hard work showcased for everyone to admire.

 

We wish you all a shabbat shalom and a restful and relaxing half-term holiday. We look forward to seeing the children back on Monday 26th February.

 

Shabbat shalom,

 

Miss Simon, Mrs Collins and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 9th February 2024

 

This week was childrens’ mental health week and the children all enjoyed the activity they did in which they drew what was important to them within their day-to-day lives and in the wider world. It was interesting to see what each child was interested in and influenced by and we know that they will enjoy discussing these with you over the next week.

 

In our English lessons this week, the children embarked on an exciting journey of creativity as they diligently worked on crafting their own Egyptian Cinderella stories. A key focus was placed on the significance of creating a simple and clear plan, emphasising the inclusion of only the main important details rather than exhaustive descriptive elements for every small event in the story. They then translated their plans into the beginnings of their own creative writing pieces. Next week will be equally engaging as the children continue to build on their narratives.

 

In our recent maths lessons, we delved into division using concrete resources to solidify the understanding of this fundamental concept. The children were introduced to dividing two-digit numbers by a one-digit number, initially without exchange, progressing to scenarios with exchanges, and divisions with remainders. They then moved onto dividing three-digit numbers. To reinforce their learning, the students practised using place value grids and part/whole models, providing essential visual support for the division process. This approach not only aids in the current level of division but lays a crucial groundwork for tackling more complex divisions in the coming years. Understanding the theory behind division is vital for the children to confidently tackle the challenges that will arise in the future. While we briefly introduced the 'bus stop' method in the context of our physical workings, our primary focus was on ensuring a solid grasp of the underlying principles. 

 

In art, the children have been immersing themselves in the exploration of various animal textures and learning how to represent them using different artistic media. Currently, they have embarked on creating collages featuring their chosen animals. We have plans to showcase these wonderful collages in a display once they are completed.

To add a personal touch to their creations, we invite the children to bring in any magazines that  they would like to use in their collages. This opportunity for individual expression will be available on Tuesday, as we aim to conclude this engaging art project.

 

Our final forest school session of this term took place yesterday. Despite the wet and muddy weather, the children's spirits remained high, and they relished their time outdoors. During the session, some children showcased their artistic talents by designing and sculpting items out of clay, adding a creative touch to the forest surroundings. Others collaborated in true teamwork fashion, constructing a bridge over a muddy puddle, allowing them to traverse the terrain with pride. The imaginative prowess of the children shone through as they dug the 'River Wile,' demonstrating incredible creativity in their outdoor pursuits. 

 

A number of children are missing equipment for their pencil box at school, including pens, glues, white board pens and rulers. Please make sure that your child has a spare 50p or £1 in their bag so that they can re-stock quickly. We recommend that each child gets themselves an extra writing pen, as these are more problematic when missing. 

 

We are all looking forward to our trip to Whipsnade Zoo on Monday. The children will need to bring fruit/vegetable snacks and a water bottle with them in a backpack but lunch will be provided. 


 

Shabbat Shalom!

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 2nd February 2024

 

The children have had a very busy week, with the King Alfred football match on Wednesday being a real highlight. It was lovely to see so many of you there supporting the children and we know they all got a lot out of the game. 

 

They also all enjoyed the Israeli theatre company that visited the school on Thursday and performed a play about twins. It was wonderful to see the children get so involved in the play, even though it was in Ivrit. We are lucky to have such great opportunities for the children to practice their Ivrit in informal and fun settings.

 

In maths this week, we continued working on our formal methods of multiplication. The children worked on multiplying a two digit number by a one digit number before moving onto multiplying three digit numbers by a one digit number. This is a difficult skill that they have all worked hard to master. We can see the progress being made in this important aspect of maths that they will continue to work on as they progress through their education. 

 

The children are also making good progress in their times tables/ division facts knowledge. This is something that needs to remain a focus, so please remind them to keep practising!

 

In our English lessons, the children continued their exploration of our class text, "Egyptian Cinderella." The week began with a comprehensive recap of the story, with the students actively sequencing events and discerning key elements. Subsequently, we engaged in insightful discussions surrounding the story's structure, breaking it down into the beginning, build-up, problem, resolution, and ending. The children demonstrated a keen understanding as they placed significant events into these categories. We then embarked on the planning phase for our own version of the story. The class enthusiastically created storyboards, mapping out the narrative elements that will serve as a foundation when they start crafting their individual versions of the tale. This process not only enhances their storytelling skills but also encourages creative expression and critical thinking.

 

This week in computing, the children dedicated their time to learning about online safety, absorbing valuable insights that they then applied to create excellent posters. These posters reflect their understanding of the importance of staying safe in the online world, showcasing both their knowledge and creativity.

 

In our science lessons, we delved into the fascinating world of invertebrates—animals without a backbone. The children enthusiastically learned about the diverse species of invertebrates that inhabit the English countryside, gaining insights into their unique characteristics and roles in the ecosystem. To bring their learning to life, the students embarked on an invertebrate hunt in Lyttelton field. With excitement in the air, they eagerly scoured the surroundings for both pictures of the various invertebrate species and real animals lurking in the mud. This hands-on experience not only deepened their understanding of the subject but also allowed them to connect theory with real-world observations.

 

We all enjoyed a muddy forest school this week, learning about the spring celebration of Imbolg - a Gaelic tradition - and discussing the signs of spring that we were beginning to see. We also played a very fun game of frost sprites and robins, running around to try and tag each other. Even the teachers got involved! Digging was undoubtedly the favourite activity of the children when they were allowed to go do their own thing, but some also chose to learn how to weave rushes and wheat sheaves together and others worked hard to create a shelter using ropes and tarpaulins. 

 

In spelling lessons we learned about words with the prefix ‘ir’, which acts in the same way as our previously learned prefixes- ‘im’, ‘in’ and ‘il’, changing the root word to its opposite.

The words on the spelling list are: 

irrational

irresistible

irrelevant

irreparable

irregular

irreversible

irresponsible

irremovable

 

This week’s common exception words are: 

  • February
  • forward
  • fruit
  • Grammar
  • pharaoh



 

Arrival at school

Our school day is really busy, trying to fit lots into the day to give the children the most from their time in school. Soft start begins at 8.30am and ends at 8.40am.  It is during this time that they get out their water bottles, snacks, reading books, and catch up with their teacher and friends before heading into the first session of the day. If they arrive at the tail end of this time or even after it, then they miss out on this important part of the day. 

To help your child get ready for the morning in a calm rather than rushed manner, it would be great if they could arrive at school closer to 8.30am than 8.40am.

Please ensure that the children are wearing either school shoes or any completely black shoe, and their house badges each day. 

Your support with this would be greatly appreciated. 

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

The Year 4 team

 

Friday 26th January 2024

 

The children have worked hard this week and produced some excellent work in all their subjects.

 

In maths the children spent the week showing how well they can apply their understanding of place value and their knowledge of multiplication facts. They used their prior knowledge to derive further calculations, such as the fact 5x7=35, to understand that 5x70=350 and 5x700=3500. We looked at a variety of informal written methods used to multiply a two digit and one digit number together, using a variety of manipulatives to physically work out the answer. Following the informal methods, we then progressed to the formal written methods for multiplication. Manipulatives such as Base 10 and counters were used to illustrate how important place value columns are when multiplying as well as demonstrating the correct order in which to do a multiplication.

 

The children are making good progress in their times tables/ division facts knowledge. This is something that needs to remain a focus, so please remind them to keep practising!

 

In English lessons the children were introduced to our new text, The Egyptian Cinderella, by Shirley Climo. We compared the structure and fairy tale elements, such as the glass slipper, unkind characters (stepsisters), and animal friends, between the traditional tale of Cinderella and this Egyptian version. The children then learned about comparative conjunctions such as while, whereas, but and although, writing sentences such as ‘While Rhodopis was gentle and kind, the servant girls teased her every day.’ The children then applied their reading and inference skills to identify the ‘show not tell’ technique, in this case, when the author describes the behaviour of the character to show how they feel, without naming the feeling.

 

The children are really enjoying our new science topic of habitats and animal adaptations. This week they learned about classification keys, which help to identify living things through a series of yes/ no questions. In art we explored collage as an artistic technique, and experimented with how it can be used to represent animal print and texture.

 

On Thursday, the children celebrated Tu B’shvat at school. It was wonderful to see their fruit-themed hats and hair bands. They joined together with Year 3 to share fascinating facts about the fruits they had brought into school - some of which the teachers had never even heard of! They learnt the brachot for the different types of fruit and got to eat 15 different types of fruit! 

 

In forest school this week, the focus was on trees, which linked really nicely with our celebration of Tu Bishevat. We started with a trust activity - the children had to pair up and one of them put a blindfold on. The other partner carefully navigated them through the wooded area, making sure to point out any potential obstacles in their path. They then stopped by a tree and the blindfolded partner touched, smelt and generally investigated the tree, without being able to see it. This encouraged the children to really connect with the tree. Was it soft or knobbly? Was it damp? Did it have shoots coming out of it? After being led back to base, the blindfolded partner took off their mask and then had to try and identify the tree they had been taken to by using their touch memory. It really was a fascinating activity.

 

Next, the children chose whether to sit and relax in hammocks, dig in the (plentiful!) mud, use watercolours and charcoal to draw/sketch trees or make different crafts out of branches and leaf litter. We then finished the session by asking everyone to contribute something they felt thankful to trees for. The children had some really thought-provoking responses.


 

In spelling lessons we learned about words with the prefix ‘im’, which acts in the same way as our previously learned prefixes- ‘in’ and ‘il’, changing the root word to its opposite.

The words on the spelling list are: 

improper

imbalance

imperfect

immature

impractical

impatient

impolite

immobile

impossible

 

This week’s common exception words are: 

  • experiment
  • extreme
  • famous
  • favourite

 

Please ensure that the children are wearing either school shoes or any completely black shoe, and their house badges each day. Thanks for your support with this!

 

We have really enjoyed hosting Mrs Drew for her 2-week exchange placement. She has taught brilliant lessons, maintained our high expectations for the class, and has supported the children with warmth and consistency. Thank you Mrs Drew!

 

We look forward to welcoming back Miss Simon on Monday.  

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 19th January 2024

 

This week we welcomed Mrs Drew to our class and to Kerem School! It has been lovely to have someone new in class and the children have enjoyed getting to know her and being taught by her in some lessons.

 

In maths, we revisited place value, exploring what happens to the value of each digit in a number when multiplying by 10 and 100. In a place value grid, each column is 10 times greater in value than the last, so when multiplying by 10, each digit moves one place value column to the left, and when multiplying by 100, each digit moves two place value columns to the left. One common misconception that cropped up is that you simply ‘add a zero’ or two zeroes. This is not correct, because it neglects the changing value of each digit as well as the key role of the digit 0 in a number, which is to ‘hold’ the place in an empty place column. The class then went on to learn about dividing numbers by 10 or 100, in which case each digit moves one (for ÷10) or two (for  ÷100) columns to the right. 

 

In English, lessons this week we continued our work on developing the children’s writing to embed their understanding of starting sentences with fronted adverbials, followed by a comma before completing the rest of the sentence. They also practised using apostrophes in contractions such as aren’t, won’t and I’d, separately learning about apostrophes to show possession, which will be worked on in more detail in future spelling lessons. 

 

Continuing our animal adaptations and habitats unit, the children learned about classifying animals this week in science, focusing on the 5 different types of vertebrates. The children worked in groups to research and present information about either mammals, fish, birds, reptiles or amphibians.

 

In History the children learned about pyramids and why they were built- as burial chambers for the Pharaohs.

 

In Art the children continued to explore animal textures and how these are represented in art using different media.

 

This week’s spelling rule was the prefix ‘il’. The children noted that all of the root words began with the letter ‘l’, such as legible, legal and logical, meaning that each word has 2 ‘l’ s. Last week we learned that the prefix ‘in’ changes the word to its opposite, eg. active - inactive. Before a root word starting with l, in– becomes il. The words on this week’s spelling list are: 

illegal

illegible 

illiterate 

illogical 

illegitimate

The common exception words we looked at were eighth, enough, exercise, experience.

 

Despite the freezing temperatures, we kept ourselves warm with lots of exciting activities at Forest School this week. We started with a team-building game, in which the children were split into groups and had to pretend to be penguins looking for space to stand together on polar ice sheets (tarpaulins). At the end of each round, the tarpaulin had to be folded and each 'penguin' had to fit back on it. By hugging, standing on one leg and the odd piggy back, each team got to round 4, which is pretty impressive! The children also learnt about hibernation and where animals living in different habitats go for their winter sleep. We were reminded that humans are mammals and that we also need to slow down and take more time to relax during the winter months. This was a wonderful link to our science topic.

 

Our class are taking part in the exciting Doodle Back-to-School Competition! This runs from today, 19th January, until 2nd February, and is a great way of ensuring the children adopt the habit of regular practise of their skills. Please encourage your child to stay in the ‘green zone’ by practising using Doodle Maths/ Tables/ Spell little and often. We could win some great prizes!

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins and Mrs Drew

 

Friday 12th January

 

What a busy week we have had!

 

In English we have been focusing on grammar techniques, learning about expanded noun phrases, verbs and adverbs, adverbials and fronted adverbials. The children have put a lot of effort into learning these techniques which can be put into practice in their writing. They wrote a short setting description about a haunted house in which the children used all of their new skills. These were started at the beginning of the week but it was amazing to see the progression of the descriptions once the children began to add different grammatical structures towards the end of the week. 

 

In maths, the children worked on factor pairs and how to use them to help them complete multiplication equations. We used factor bugs to help find our factor pairs, ensuring that the children were aware that 1 is always a factor of any number and the pair for 1 is the number itself - for example 1x12 is 12. This is used when multiplying larger numbers together such as 24x8 as we can factorise 24 to 2x12 meaning we can rewrite the equation as 2x12x8. If you complete 12x8 first to get 96 you can then multiply this by 2 to get 192. They were able to answer questions using these skills.

 

We had a fantastic history lesson, with the children being introduced to the new topic of ancient Egypt that we will be studying this term. The children became archaeologists, investigating different aspects of ancient Egypt that we will be studying in more depth as we move further into the topic. They enjoyed learning about four famous Pharaohs - Queen Hatshepsut, Queen Cleopatra, King Tutankhamun, and King Ramses II - deciphering hieroglyphics, analysing artefacts, and discovering important aspects of mummification. They are all looking forward to the continuation of this subject.

 

Our science lesson began with a question - what makes a living thing? The children all wrote their own answers to this question before the lesson began and then went back to it at the end, once they had learnt the answer to the question, to show what they knew. We learnt about MRS NERG, what each letter stands for, and how every living thing exhibits these life processes. The children then worked on classifying animals. They were given pictures of different animals and, in pairs, worked to sort these into different categories. These included: animals that live in cold places v animals that live in hot places; animals with no legs v animals with two legs; animals in the cat family v animals in the dog family and many more. 

 

Our spelling rule was the prefix in- which is used to mean not.

Word list:

independent 

indigestion 

inedible 

inefficient 

inexcusable 

inexpensive 

insignificant 

insincere 

invisible

Our common exception words were 

disappear

early

earth

eight

 

Reminders

Miss Simon will not be here for the next few weeks. She will be covered by Mrs Drew from Clore Shalom school. Mrs Drew is very excited to get to know the children and support them on their learning journeys.

Miss Simon will be back at school from Monday 29th January.

 

Please ensure that the children bring in their reading folders on their designated reading days. We endeavour to read with each child on their reading day but due to time constraints that is sometimes not possible. As such, free readers will be read with every other week. It is important that they continue to read at home, aloud to an adult. 

 

Shabbat Shalom

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon, and the Year 4 team.

 

Friday 5th January

 

Happy New Year! 

 

It was wonderful to see everyone back this week after a long time away. Although it was a short week, we managed to fit in a lot of learning. 

 

The children enjoyed writing about their holidays in our English lessons this week, making sure to use expanded noun phrases to better describe the wonderful times they had over the long break. They recapped what a noun was - an object, person, place or thing - and what an adjective was - a describing word used for a noun - before showcasing these in a short write about their time away from school. For the next few weeks, we are going to be working on writing skills, ensuring that the children understand the role of different word classes (nouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs for example) and can use these to affect in their writing. 

 

The children also showed the work they have put into practising their times tables in the tests that we did this week. The children will be having times tables (and division) lessons weekly but it is important that they practise daily, both in school and at home, and we appreciate your support with this. 

 

It is very important that the children read for at least five minutes each day. This will help them develop their English skills, expand their vocabulary, and ensure that they are able to write in a more mature and meaningful way. This is especially important as we start our verbal reasoning lessons - the first of which we had this week - where the better the childrens’ vocabulary, the more they will be able to access and answer the questions.

 

Today we had a visit from the MP for Finchley and Golders Green, Mike Freer, allowing the children to ask questions about his career in politics and what it means to be an MP in England. ‘Is it a lot of pressure to stand in front of the Prime Minister?’ and ‘is it embarrassing to have an idea that people disagree with?’ were just some of the excellent questions that the children wanted to discover the answers to.

 

A real highlight of our week has been the start of forest school. It was wonderful to see Emma again, and the children enjoyed joining in with all the games they played. They then collected twigs and leaves from their environment to make a mobile, or hanging ornament. As always, the children got so much out of developing their skills and characteristics and working together outside in the open air.

 

We look forward to continuing our learning next week.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins and Miss Simon

 

 

 

Friday 8th December

 

This week has been very busy, culminating in our end of term show! The children worked hard at rehearsals and I am sure you can all agree, produced an excellent performance. The show was a great end to the term and showcased what they had learnt over an exciting time.

 

But, as they said in the show, it wasn’t all play! We also got a lot of work done this week.

 

This week we started our new DT project. The children have embarked on a journey of designing and advertising their own unique doughnut creations. Throughout the lessons, they explored a myriad of flavour ideas and combinations, some of which were delightfully unconventional, before settling on a single doughnut design. Their imaginative and reflective thinking came into play as they considered practical aspects for the upcoming doughnut-making sessions next term. It's been a captivating start to this project, and we are eager to witness the children’s continued enthusiasm and ingenuity as they bring their doughnut visions to life.

 

In science, we finished our investigation about tooth decay. Having placed eggs in four different liquids— water, vinegar, cranberry juice, and Coca-Cola— to observe the effects of these liquids on our teeth, the children wrote up their observations and what we could conclude from the results. Most of the class hypothesised that the Coca Cola would have the greatest impact on the eggs but, actually, the egg in the vinegar was the most changed- its shell had become completely soft! 

 

This week in maths, our focus has been on time. The children have dedicated themselves to learning how to read and understand a clock face, with a particular emphasis on mastering 'past' and 'to'. Additionally, they've been actively solving worded problems related to time, calculating the duration of events like TV programmes and train journeys. Understanding that time can be a challenging topic, we encourage you to support your child's learning at home, perhaps by introducing an analogue watch. This hands-on approach provides daily opportunities for your child to practise and hone their time-reading skills. The children have shown commendable effort and perseverance, and we are confident that with continued practice, their understanding of time will become even more secure. 

 

In our English lessons this week, we have been working on advertisements, specifically exploring the elements that make an advert captivating. The children delved into the features of an advertisement, including attention-grabbing slogans, clever wordplay, and vibrant text. To apply their learning, each child crafted their own advertisement inspired by the doughnut they designed for the doughnut Design and Technology project. The creative process involved brainstorming brand names, designing logos, and formulating catchy slogans for their doughnuts. The result was a collection of impressive posters, and in the upcoming sessions, the children will have the opportunity to recreate these on the computer. It's been a delightful week of imaginative exploration, and we look forward to seeing their continued enthusiasm for creative expression.

 

We wish you all a very happy Chanukah and Shabbat Shalom.

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the year 4 team


 

Jewish Studies 18th Kislev - 1st December

This week has been another busy one, looking at basic Chumash grammar including prefixes and reviewing our gematria. 

 

We have also been learning the story of Chanukah, including a dingbat version of the story to help us remember it. We have started looking at lots of different halachot (laws) concerning lighting the Chanukiah. We will be continuing with Chanukah next week.

 

Wishing you Shabbat Shalom!

Friday 1st December 

 

The children all looked fantastic today with their mad hair! It was really wonderful to see them all get involved in this worthwhile charity event. 

 

Thank you also for bringing in gifts for the Chanukah Gift Project this week. The children each created a bag to put their gifts into which will be sent to Israel where they will be enjoyed by children who have been displaced by the war. 

 

It was lovely to again see so many of you at tefillah on Thursday morning. It really demonstrates the strong community we have at the school which is so important.

 

In our maths lessons this week, we delved into the concept of area. The children had a practical introduction by measuring the area of their whiteboards using post-it notes and creating shapes with blocks that had the same area. Subsequently, they honed their skills by counting squares to measure the area of rectilinear shapes and creating their own shapes with straight lines and right angles. The week also saw the students working diligently on their reasoning skills, answering questions that required written explanations.

 

In English we finished our persuasive letters and are ready to make a display of the childrens' hard work. We also worked on writing our own dilemma stories, starting by planning a dilemma based around a tree in the rainforest. The children chose a variety of trees to base their stories on and spent a lesson writing up their stories, using their plans to help. This is an important skill and one that we will be focussing on more over the coming year.

 

In the art lesson this week, the children completed their Henri Rousseau portraits, finishing their pencil drawings with vibrant colours using oil pastels. Their dedication to making the portraits as vivid as possible mirrors Rousseau's own style, and we look forward to showcasing their masterpieces to the school and wider community.

 

Our science lesson saw us begin an exciting experiment. We placed eggs in four different liquids—water, vinegar, cranberry juice, and coca-cola—to observe the effects over the next week. This experiment serves to illustrate the impact of these liquids on our teeth, and the children are eagerly anticipating the results.

 

In general knowledge this week, the children researched St Andrew’s Day which was celebrated on Thursday. They looked at why it is celebrated and where it is celebrated and found out some fun facts about the day. The children would love to share what they learnt!

 

This week's spelling rule was: words which have the prefix auto which means ‘self’.

autograph

autobiography

automatic

autofocus

autocorrect

autopilot

autorotate 

autonomy

autocue

 

Topic/ Common Exception Words: 

different

difficult

decide

describe

few

 

This week also marked the election of six children to the Kerem Cares committees. The students participated in a secret ballot, providing them with a firsthand experience of the election process. We commend all the children for their hard work in crafting speeches and displaying bravery when delivering the speech in front of the class. While not every candidate could be elected, we are proud of each child who took the initiative to put themselves forward.


 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon, and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 24th November

 

It was lovely to see many of you on Thursday for our whole-school tefillah. Seeing so many of our families come together to support each other reaffirms that we are not just a school but one community. Thursday tefillah will continue until the end of term.

 

The children had a wonderful time making challah at the whole school challah bake on Thursday. Hopefully you are all enjoying the challah they shaped! Not only was it brilliant to see everyone come together for a joyous event with lots of singing and community spirit, the children also received videos from soldiers in Israel who have benefitted from our activities here. 

 

This week in our maths lessons, we extended our exploration of multiplication by focusing on the 6 and 9 times tables, building on the foundation laid in the previous week's unit. The children looked at the patterns between the 3, 6, and 9 times tables. They also continued working on identifying multiples of 3, 6, and 9, finding the digit sum of numbers, and if that sum was a multiple of three, understanding which of the times tables the original number would be a multiple of. This exercise not only reinforced their multiplication proficiency but also deepened their grasp of number patterns and relationships. It's worth noting that, even as we transition away from the specific multiplication and division topic, the importance of mastering times tables remains paramount. These foundational skills are not only integral to our current unit but will serve as essential building blocks for future mathematical concepts. Thus, we encourage continued practice and reinforcement of times tables as we progress through various mathematical topics.

 

In our recent English lessons, the children demonstrated remarkable dedication and skill as they engaged in the task of crafting persuasive letters addressed to a woodcutter. Imagining themselves as rainforest-dwelling animals residing in a Kapok tree, they embarked on a journey to advocate for the preservation of their habitat. To equip them with effective persuasive tools, we began by exploring various devices that could enhance the impact of their letters. The children delved into the intricacies of rhetorical questions, negative commands, and the incorporation of true facts with statistics. These elements served as powerful tools to persuade their intended audience—the woodcutter. To ensure a structured and well-thought-out approach, the children had the opportunity to create a plan. This planning phase enabled them to articulate the reasons compelling the woodcutter to reconsider the decision to cut down the tree. The plan became a valuable resource during the drafting process, guiding them through the initial composition and serving as a reference point during subsequent refinements. The result was a collection of highly persuasive letters, each uniquely crafted to convey the urgent plea for the preservation of the Kapok tree. The children's efforts have not only showcased their growing proficiency in persuasive writing but have also demonstrated a keen awareness of the importance of protecting our environment.

 

In art, the children continued with their Henri Rousseau inspired drawings. They are all using oil pastels to add the signature bold colours Rousseau favoured in his artwork and creating beautiful pieces of work that we look forward to putting on display. 

 

The children also enjoyed a general knowledge lesson this week, where they were given the opportunity to research facts about animals to answer three questions:

  • Which animal has the largest brain?
  • Which animal has the most bones?
  • Which animal has the largest bones?

If you ask your children about these questions over the weekend, we are sure they will be eager to share their findings!

 

Spelling:  The spelling rule we learnt about was: words with the prefix ‘anti’ which means the opposite of.

antiseptic

anticlockwise

antisocial

antidote

antibiotic

antivenom

anti-aging

antifreeze

antiperspirant 

antigravity

 

Topic/ Common Exception Words: 

circle

complete

consider

continue

 

Coming up next week:

The children will be voting for 2 children to be on each of the Kerem Cares student councils. These are:

Kerem Cares Kehilah- Making decisions based on the school community and environment (a classic student council)

Kerem Cares Tzedaka- Deciding how we can support different charities and other acts of chesed the school gets involved with

Kerem Cares Tikkun Olam- Involving themselves with the environment and how they protect our world as a school

 

Children who would like to put themselves forward for one of the councils should think about why they would like to get involved, and what they feel they would bring to the role. They do not have to have something written out in order to read, but they need to be able to speak confidently to persuade the other children to vote for them. They should be prepared for Monday. The time, day and frequency of meetings has not yet been decided, but we will let the children know when this has been decided. Meetings will begin at the start of the spring term.

 

On Monday 27th November, all of the children at school will receive a gift bag that they will decorate during an assigned lesson. We will explain to the children that the gifts are for children in Israel who are less fortunate than themselves. The information will be explained in an age appropriate way. The class teachers will not be going into more detail than that as we know the children know different things about the situation. 

We are hoping that each child will be able to fill the bag with the following new gifts:
 

A plastic water bottle

An A5 plain papered drawing pad/notepad

A pack of colours/a new pencil case with colours and pencils in

A small cuddly toy

A small gift such as a yoyo, bubbles, hair accessories, toy car, balls.

 

Gifts need to be received at school on Tuesday 28th November.
 

Shabbat Shalom

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team. 

 

Jewish Studies 4th Kislev - 17th November

 

It's been another busy week in Year 4 JS this week, as we have been reviewing and learning our gematria rules, with a focus on the two less straight forward numbers of 15 and 16.  The children especially enjoyed working out the numerical values of their names.  Also this week we have revised our 6 basic Hebrew prefixes in preparation for learning parashat Toledot in Chumash. 

 

We also learnt the story of this week's parasha of Toledot, and made lots of interesting observations on the parasha.

 

Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom - and  may we all hear good  news from our beautiful Israel very soon!

 

Shabbat Shalom 

Friday 17th November


 

This week marked a significant milestone as we hosted our first showcase on Monday evening and Tuesday morning, providing a wonderful opportunity for the children to share their books and all their work with their parents. It was lovely to see the active participation of so many parents during these events. The joy and pride radiating from the children as they showcased their favourite pieces of work was truly special to observe.

 

The collective spirit and meaningful connection in the Kerem community were demonstrated once again during the whole school tefillah on Thursday. Seeing so many of our families come together to support each other reaffirm that we are not just a school but a unified community. The presence and engagement of parents contribute immensely to the positive and nurturing environment we strive to cultivate. These community tefillah sessions will continue on every Thursday until the end of term.

 

This week has been anti-bullying week for the whole school. The theme this year was ‘kindness’ and the different forms that this takes. All the children have been engaged in a range of activities on offer for them; from odd socks day to lunchtime events. The week included the creation of empowering posters focused on standing up to bullying. It's heartening to know that the impact of these activities lasts beyond the week – the children still proudly point out the posters they crafted last year, displayed prominently throughout the school.

 

This week, our focus in maths was on the 3 and 6 times tables. Building upon the foundation laid in Year 3, we delved deeper into the intricacies of the 3 and 6 times tables, and the links between them. The children not only revised their knowledge but also expanded and deepened their understanding. A key concept they explored was identifying multiples of 3 and 6. By examining the digit sum (the totla of the digits added together, such as the digit sum of 363 is 3+6+3, which is 12) and checking if it was a multiple of three, they could determine if a number was a multiple of three (12 is a multiple of 3, therefore 363 is also a multiple of 3). Moreover, if the number was even, it would also be a multiple of 6. This approach empowered them to confidently assess larger numbers, such as determining whether 1296 was a multiple of 3 or 6. We also introduced a game where the children went around the class, calling out numbers. If the number happened to be a multiple of 3 or 6, they engaged in a corresponding action. This interactive approach not only reinforced their understanding of multiples but also added a layer of fun to their learning. The children thoroughly enjoyed this game, and it proved to be an effective way to solidify their knowledge.

 

In our English sessions this week, we continued to explore "The Great Kapok Tree" continued. We recapped the use of inverted commas, or speech marks, and discussed their correct application. We went on to emphasise the necessary punctuation accompanying speech marks – a comma at the end of the reporting clause preceding the speech, a full stop, comma or exclamation mark concluding the speech within the marks, and a capital letter initiating the speech. Additionally, we delved into the strategic use of dialogue in writing, emphasising its role in advancing the plot or giving the reader extra details about characters or friendships—a pivotal target for our students to incorporate into their writing.

Our commitment to breaking free from the verb 'said' persisted as we explored synonyms for 'said' and actively applied them in our written exercises. This was culminated in a brief writing activity, during which the children wrote an imagined conversation between two characters from "The Great Kapok Tree."

Moving on from this, we introduced the idea of persuasive devices- the techniques used in writing to convince or persuade the reader to do or not to do something. The children enthusiastically embraced the challenge of persuading us to share ou imaginary bag of chocolate with them. They were very convincing! Furthermore, we closely examined a letter from a character in "The Great Kapok Tree," identifying and discussing persuasive devices employed, including rhetorical questions, personal anecdotes, negative commands, and references to the future.

 

This week in spelling, we have been looking at words which have the prefix ‘super’, meaning ‘above or beyond normal’. 

Word list:

superficial

superfine

superhero

superhuman

supervise

supersede

superpower

superimpose

supernova

 

This week’s common exception words are: 

caught

centre

century

certain

 

Please make sure that the children practise these until they have learned how to spell and use them in sentences. Thank you! Spelling homework has been set and is expected to be handed on Monday. It is important to note that a number of children gave these in late. Please encourage and speak to your child at home to hand their work in on time. 



 

A few reminders:

  • Please remind your child to wear their house badge every day. If they have lost their badge they need to bring in £1 for a new one. 
  • Many of the children are missing stationery items. Pens are particularly problematic, and this is having an impact on our work. If your child needs an item please send in 50p for them to buy it in the morning. Keeping a spare 50p or 2 in their bag will mean that they are prepared should they need to replace something.
  • Our expectations in terms of presentation of homework are similar to our classwork expectations, and it is important that the children understand this. As such, please can we ask you to remind your child to produce their best work at all times, including presentation. This includes using a handwriting pen or a friction pen rather than a biro, preferably in blue, doing their maths work in pencil just as they would at school, and ensuring there is a date and title at the beginning of their work. Many thanks for your support with this.

 

Mitzvah Day ( held on 19th November), a global Jewish-led initiative, champions the ethos of "Tikkun Olam" or "repairing the world." Annually celebrated, it calls people to unite through acts of kindness, emphasising our shared responsibility to make the world a better place. This year at Kerem, our contribution was to create a joke/puzzle book for children that will be sent to one of the Great Ormond Street Hospital children's wards. Children from Years 1-6 have contributed jokes, riddles, and puzzles to entertain the children during what surely must be a very difficult time. We are also planning to translate the book into Ivrit over the coming weeks, so that it can be sent to a hospital or hospitals in Israel. Please do ask your child about their contribution to this collaborative project.

 

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon, and the Year 4 team


 

Friday 10th November 

 

With such an exciting week last week it was quite nice for the children to return to normal.

 

In English lessons this week the children were introduced to our new class text, The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry. The children considered the setting of the story and then designed their own tree setting, researching different trees that can be found growing in tropical rainforests. They then learned about the structure of the story- it is a dilemma story and this involves a main character, a dilemma that they face, then a period of waiting during which they ponder their dilemma, think about their options or receive advice or guidance from another character. An important part of the story is then the resolution, where the character decides what they are going to do, and the reader learns about the consequences of this. The children explored different dilemma scenarios in groups, decided on what the resolution should be and then acted them out for the rest of the class. They really enjoyed this! The children were also tasked with using their imagination and thesauruses to find different words for said when using direct speech in stories, as we declared that ‘said is dead’. They came up with brilliant words such as ‘commanded’, ‘exclaimed’, and ‘announced’.

 

This week in maths, our focus remained on addition and subtraction. Specifically, we delved into the column method for subtraction, tackling progressively more challenging calculations involving no exchange, one exchange, and multiple exchanges. The children worked hard on this skill and demonstrated a strong ability to solve complex subtraction problems with confidence.

Additionally, we explored efficient subtraction strategies. The children learned to discern situations where the column method may not be the quickest and easiest approach. For instance, they tackled questions like 248-199, utilising key instant recall facts to recognize that adding 1 to both numbers would create a simpler equation with the same answer. 

 

In our art lesson this week, the children continued their journey with Henri Rousseau-inspired portraits. They dedicated their efforts to crafting the foreground and midground of their ‘jungle’ landscapes. By incorporating leaves, plants, and even the addition of animals in Rousseau's distinctive style, the children showcased both creativity and attention to detail. The upcoming week will see them adding vibrant colours to their masterpieces using oil pastels, bringing their visions to life.

 

Our guided reading piece centred around why we wear poppies and the Poppy Appeal in preparation for Remembrance Day on Saturday. The children read a Newsround article that detailed the origins of the appeal. Subsequently, we engaged in a lively class discussion where they shared their findings. One of the notable debate topics was whether people should wear poppies. The children actively participated in the discussion, expressing thoughtful perspectives and contributing to a rich and meaningful dialogue.

 

The spelling rule we learned about this week is words with the prefix ‘inter’, which means between, among or within.

interact

interfere

intercity

international

intermediate 

internet

intergalactic

interrupt

intervene

interlude

Topic/ Common Exception Words: busy, business, calendar

Homework was set on Wednesday and this is due in on Monday. Please support the children by encouraging them to practise their spellings as often as possible.

 

Next week is Anti-Bullying Week! Each day is brimming with exciting activities designed to explore the importance of kindness and standing up against bullying. Monday will be Odd Socks Day and we encourage everyone to come into school wearing odd socks. 

 

We also look forward to seeing you at the showcases that we have next week where you will have the opportunity to view the childrens’ work in their books. These are taking place on Monday from 3pm and Tuesday from 8.15am. 

The event will include:

  • opportunities to look at your children's exercise books with them, with guided questions to help you to have meaningful conversations about your child's learning 
  • a main school subject showcases where you will be able to see how children's work progresses over their time at Kerem and learn more about the resources your child uses at school
  • hands on opportunities to explore the technology and computing resources available for your child's learning

 

We know how difficult the recent weeks have been and how important community is at this time. As such, we want to remind you that, from Thursday 16th November, we are inviting parents to join us at 8.40am on Thursday for Tefillah. This is an opportunity for the wider Kerem community to support each other and be together in a meaningful way.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon, and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 3rd November

 

Our week kicked off with a fantastic trip to Legoland on Monday. The children had an amazing time, participating in two different workshops that encouraged collaboration and creativity. In the first workshop, they worked together to build iconic landmarks of each continent of the world using Lego bricks. The second workshop involved creating moving fairground models complete with lights and sounds. It was a wonderful experience for the children as they honed their teamwork and problem-solving skills. Additionally, they had the opportunity to explore Miniland and even completed a fun scavenger hunt worksheet.

 

On Tuesday, the children had their second World Religions lesson, where we focused on Islamic religious festivals such as Eid al-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, and Ramadan. They learned the significance of these festivals and compared them to the Jewish ones they are familiar with. It was a great opportunity for cultural enrichment and understanding.

 

In Science, the children continued to be enthusiastic about learning. They wrote up their digestive system investigation that they carried out before the half-term break. They used scientific language and took the time to evaluate their experiments, building their scientific skills and knowledge.

 

This week in mathematics, we concentrated on addition, specifically dealing with numbers with four digits. We explored the column method, a helpful technique for calculations involving multi-digit numbers. The children tackled various types of calculations, including without exchanges, with one exchange, and involving more than one exchange. It's been impressive to see their dedication and persistence in developing this essential skill.

 

In English, we concluded our unit of work on the book "The Explorer" by writing a diary entry as if they were the main character, Fred. They applied their learning about the features of a diary entry from before the half-term break, ensuring that they included features such as writing in the first person, using informal and colloquial language (with "hmph" being a favourite), and conveying thoughts and feelings. Their creativity and writing skills shone through in this assignment.

 

This week in spelling, we looked at words where you need to double the final consonant of the root word when you add a suffix. These words all have more than one syllable.

 

Word list:

forgetting 

forgotten 

beginning 

beginner 

preferred 

preferring 

occurred 

occurring 

forbidden 

committed

This week’s common exception words are: breath, breathe, build. Please make sure that the children practise these until they have learned how to spell and use them in sentences. Thank you!

 

We hope to be able to update the blog later, to let you know how everyone is doing on the Shabbaton. We are looking forward to seeing you all at 6:15 pm after Shabbat for Havdallah, after which it will be ‘home time’.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Jewish Studies 5th Cheshvan - 20th October 2023

 

Dear Parents, I hope that this blog finds you and all your families safe and well, whether here, in Israel or anywhere else around the world.  Our hearts go out to all of Am Yisrael, and we send so much warmth and love to them all from Kerem.

 

Preparations are well under way for our upcoming Shabbaton. The children have all created their own Shabbat board games, which look amazing (see pics below). They have all also been given a topic for a short Dvar Torah which they should be writing at home, and sharing with me for the first day back after half term. The Shabbaton will be a wonderful experience for all the children, and I for one and really looking forward to it!

 

I wish you all a safe and enjoyable half term and a really beautiful Shabbat, and we pray that the new week ushers in a renewed peace for our beautiful State of Israel.

 

Shabbat Shalom

Mrs Hill

Our Shabbaton Board Games

Friday 20th October 2023

 

Firstly, we want to say well done to the children who performed admirably during the challenging assessment week this week. They completed assessments in reading, spelling and grammar, and maths, as well as producing some excellent self portraits for their art assessment. Their attitude towards all the assessments was fantastic and the children all worked hard to do their best. 

 

Year 4 took part in a wonderful yet gruesome science lesson, in which the children carried out an experiment to show how food is digested by our bodies and becomes poo! We crushed up crackers and bananas in a sandwich bag (representing the stomach) and then we squeezed this into some stockings (representing our small intestine). Finally, the children enjoyed pushing out the final chunks into a bowl representing our poo! We discussed how the body absorbs the nutrients from the food we eat and distributes them to where the body needs them through our bloodstream.

 

This week, our focus in English class has been on limericks. Limericks are a delightful form of poetry known for their playful and rhythmic nature, and the children have shown great enthusiasm in exploring this unique genre. We discussed the key features that make a limerick stand out, including its five-line structure, AABBA rhyme scheme, and a specific rhythm that gives it a lively and catchy quality. The students identified limericks within a collection of poems. They were able to apply their understanding of the limerick's distinctive features to distinguish them from other types of poetry. As a class activity, the students collaborated to write a limerick. It was a fantastic exercise that allowed them to apply what they had learned about limericks while working together to create a fun and engaging poem. This is the limerick they wrote:

There once was a young girl called Kat

Who wore her long hair in a plait

Until one fine day

Her hair went away

Forevermore she wore a hat.

The children's creativity and enthusiasm for poetry have truly shone during this topic. They've had a great time experimenting with limericks and exploring the creative possibilities this unique form of poetry offers.

 

We also began our World Religions topic this week. This year the children are learning about Islam and the Islamic faith. Our exploration of different faiths is an enriching and enlightening experience for the students.

We began the lesson by discussing the key features of Islam and the similarities to Judaism. This included ritual washing, facing a specific way during prayers, and both the religions originating in the Middle East. The students actively engaged in the learning process by creating a page that summarised important aspects of the religion. Through this activity, the children not only gained a better understanding of Islamic practices but also developed skills in research and presentation. It was inspiring to see their curiosity and respect for different cultures and religions.


 

The spelling rule we learned this week was adding the suffixes -er, -ing, and -ed, when the root word has 2 syllables and the consonant at the end of the root word is not doubled. 

Word list: gardener 

gardening 

limited 

limiting 

offering 

offered 

benefited 

benefiting 

focused 

Focusing

Common exception words: believe, bicycle, thankful, syllable

We also recapped the suffix -ful and what happens when the root word has only one syllable and suffixes are added. Short vowel sound: a, e, i, o, u eg. slap, run, the consonant at the end of the word is doubled- slapped, running

Long vowel sound (pronounced ay ee igh oh you) eg. hope, slide, the consonant is not doubled and the e is removed before adding the suffix- hoped, sliding (please avoid implying that just a ‘d’ is added, as this leads to misconceptions)

 

Please point out these words when reading and see if your child can make their own sentences using them.


 

Reminders

Please remember to bring in the form for the shabbaton on Monday or Tuesday after half term. We understand the anxieties a lot of the children have about the shabbaton so we will be talking about it in PSHE lessons during the first week back. Over half term please remind them that there is no need to be worried about the Shabbaton, it will be a lot of fun and is not something that should be daunting. 

 

Please keep reading with the children at home and send reading folders to school on their reading day. It is important for the free readers to bring the book that they are reading into school on their reading day. 

 

Many children need 50p for pens and other pieces of stationery. We will remind the children to ask if they do need more stationery but if you could also ask that would be very helpful. 


 

We hope you have a restful and relaxing half term.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon, and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 13th October

 

 

We hope this blog finds you and your loved ones in good health. In light of the events in Israel this week, the children began the week with a prolonged PSHE lesson in which they shared their thoughts and feelings. There was excellent reflection from all the pupils as they listened to their classmates.

In our maths lessons, we carried on working on the essential skill of rounding. We started by rounding numbers to the nearest hundred and later progressed to rounding to the nearest thousand. Rounding is a crucial skill that helps students estimate numbers quickly and make sense of large quantities. We used various methods and engaging activities to practise rounding, including number lines, real-world examples, and interactive games. The students have shown great progress in this area and are becoming more confident in their ability to round numbers accurately. 

 

In English, we continued to read The Explorer by Katherine Rundell. The children are enjoying getting to know the characters and joining them in their adventures and experiences in the Amazon. We looked at an example of a diary entry, and used different colours to show examples of the features of this text type. Features include written in first person, in a chatty and informal style, description of thoughts and feelings, among others.  

 

Our spelling rule this week was the -ssion suffix. We discussed how this particular combination of letters creates the distinctive 'shun' sound in words. It's an important spelling pattern that appears in many common words in the English language. We engaged in various activities to help students understand and internalize this spelling rule including ‘look, cover, write, check’ to embed the knowledge. We provided numerous examples of words containing the "-ssion" suffix, such as "mission," "expression," "discussion," and "impression." By exploring these words together, the students had the opportunity to identify and practice the 'shun' sound in different contexts. We encourage you to reinforce this learning at home by incorporating "-ssion" words into your conversations and drawing attention to them when reading with your child.

Spelling words: expression, discussion, confession, permission, admission, transmission, possession, profession, depression, impression

Common exception/ topic/ commonly misspelled words: answer, appear, arrive, stretch, challenge, different, which 

 

Our primary focus this week in art was on drawing portraits inspired by Henri Rousseau's artistic vision. We revisited his artistic style that the children had written about in their artist factfile last week. Rousseau's lush, exotic landscapes and the intricate details of his work have been an ongoing source of inspiration for our young artists.We discussed how Rousseau's paintings often featured people and animals in captivating and whimsical settings, and we decided to bring this concept into our own art. We will continue these portraits in a later art lesson.

 

In science, the children had the opportunity to visit the new STEAM lab. Here they used our VR headsets to explore the digestive system and even ‘hold’ the different organs involved. We also recapped the journey that food makes through the digestive system and labelled the organs, including the liver and pancreas.

 

Reminders:

Please read with your child at home a number of times each week in order to ensure their progress in reading.

Free readers should bring in their reading folders and reading logs on their reading day, when they will be checked by one of our team. They should bring in the book that they are reading, so that we can read with them.

 

Homework has been set this week- spelling is due on Monday, and maths will be due on Tuesday. Please let us know about any struggles your child experienced with the homework, so that we can adapt what we set next time and ensure that the work is manageable.

 

Please ensure that all school uniforms, water bottles and snack containers are named, so that we can return any misplaced items.

 

We can hardly believe that we have one more week of school before half term. We are sure that it will fly by.  

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

 

 

 

Jewish Studies 21st Tishrei - 6th October 2023

 

Moadim LeSimchah to you all!  What a week we've had! From learning the theory of the Sukkot Mitzvot to putting them all into practice.  We've waved our lulavim north, south, east, west, up and down each morning during Hallel, having learnt the correct way to hold the arba minim.  We have also loved being enveloped in the warm hug of the Sukkah, having made lots of Sukkah visits throughout the week!  We give huge thanks to families Mansfield and Abrahams for having hosted the class and made us all feel so very welcome! It really has been a special week for us all!

 

I wish you all Shabbat Shalom and Chag Same'ach.

Mrs Hill

 

 

 

 

Friday 6th October 2023

 

We have had a wonderful week in Year 4. The children really enjoyed the special Succot Tefilah each day, with hallel and the children’s ‘arbah minim’- it was lovely to see so many children bringing their lulav and etrog to school.

 

On Thursday and Friday we were lucky enough to be able to visit the sukkot of 2 of our classmates! Many thanks to families Mansfield and Abrahams for having us. An additional big thanks goes to Mrs Hill for organising this for us as well as all the other classes in the school.   

 

In English this week, the children worked on their basic sentence writing skills. The children learned that sentences are ‘built’ using clauses. A clause contains a subject and a verb (something that the subject is doing). A simple sentence is made up of one clause. An example of a simple sentence is ‘The mango fell.’ Mango is the subject, fell is the verb. This can then be enhanced by adding adjectives, adverbs and prepositions, however it is still a simple (single clause) sentence. 

The ripe, juicy mango fell heavily from the tree. 

The children used their reading skills in science, as they completed a comprehension about the digestive system. Have a look at the photos of our displays in the slide show below.

 

In maths, we extended the work we began in English by spending more time practising how to mathematically reason and explain both verbally and in writing, with a focus on sense, clarity and of course mathematical vocabulary! This is something that we will continue to work on. 

An example of what we worked on is:

4,752 is greater than 3,999. First, I looked at the thousands column, because this is the place value column with the highest value in 4 digit numbers. One number had 4 thousands whereas the other number had 3 thousands, therefore I knew that 4,752 is the greater number.

3, 204 is greater than 3,132 because although both the numbers have 3 thousands, when I looked at the hundreds, the place value column with the next highest value, I saw that one number had 2 hundreds and the other had 1 hundred, therefore 3204 is the greater number.

As you can see above, the children learned how to compare and order numbers, and began learning about rounding numbers to the nearest 10.

 

In art the children looked in more detail at the work of Henri Rousseau, and created fantastic fact files about his life.

 

In spelling lessons, we continued learning the spellings detailed in last week’s post: Words that end with the sound ‘chure’, which is spelled -ture.

  • creature 
  • picture 
  • nature 
  • furniture 
  • capture 
  • culture 
  • moisture 
  • future 
  • gesture 
  • structure

Topic/ Common Exception Words: address, although, column, stretch, beautiful. Please keep practising these words in particular. From next week, we will be working on new words and rules each week, as we will be setting homework tasks to consolidate the weekly rule and common exception words. We will also be adding some words we have noticed are commonly misspelled in written work throughout the week.

 

In geography, the children learned about the climate in tropical rainforests. They began constructing a graph showing the temperature and precipitation throughout the year in the rainforest. They utilised many maths skills to do this, including using a ruler, deciding on a scale for each measurement, discussing the unit of measure used (mm and ℃), X and Y axes, labeling each axis, and many more. Bars were drawn for rainfall/ precipitation, and a line for temperature. 

 

Reminders:

Homework- The children will be receiving their first pieces of homework next week. They will receive English/ spelling homework on Wednesdays and this will be due in on Mondays. Maths will be set on Fridays and will be due in on Tuesdays. This information can be found in the ‘useful information’ section above. Our homework is not designed to be challenging, the aim is to consolidate key knowledge and skills. We do not want homework to be a cause of stress for children or their families. Please email us if the homework has been too much for your child to manage, and bear with us while we guage what will work best for different pupils.

 

Legoland- We are all so excited to be going to Legoland on Monday! The weather forecast looks warm, so please apply sunscreen before school and pupils should wear a cap. Children must bring a backpack, a leakproof bottle of water, and some snacks, adhering to the school policy.  Please aim for an 8:15am arrival at school, so that the children can visit the toilet and say tefilah before we leave. We are really looking forward to this experience with the children.Children will be expected to wear their full school uniform including comfortable walking shoes e.g. trainers.

 

Please find below a poster about the BBC's 500 word stories competition, for ages 5+. There is a short video on the website with several of the famous authors, who judge the competition, talking about the types of things they like to see. Click through to the website from the link to find all the details, should your child like to enter. Good luck, and enjoy!

 

Well done to the children who played at the Maccabi football tournament, we are sure that you showed your resilience, persistence, and good middot!

 

Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

500 Word Stories

Friday 27th September 

 

We have had a busy and productive week!

 

In maths, the children have worked so hard to secure their understanding of place value, which underpins all other areas of number so is crucially important. We used place value knowledge to find 1, 10, 100, 1,000 more or less than a range of numbers, including those where many digits change, such as 10 less than 6005. We then moved on to learning about number lines to 10,000, where the start number might be zero or could be a different number. The class learned how to use division to work out what each interval is worth. Following on from this, they discussed suitable estimates from the information given on number lines and the value of each interval, justifying their choices. As well as a lot of practice to help the children embed these skills, there has been plenty of stretch and challenge. 

Helpful mathematical vocabulary for these lessons includes: value, interval, midpoint, start point, end point, estimate, position, crossing 10/100/1000, place value column, less/ more.

 

In English, we are really enjoying reading and exploring The Explorer by Katherine Rundell as a class. The pupils examined 3 different front covers of the book and used the blurb to look for clues and make predictions about what might happen in the story. We also completed a formal comprehension on chaper 2. We will be continuing work on The Explorer next week.

 

The children were excited to learn more about the rainforest in geography. They earned what the term ‘biome’ means- a large natural area with its own unique ecosystem, which includes climate, geography, and the plants and animals that live there. The tropical rainforest biome can be found around the equator in the tropic of cancer and topic of capricorn. The class worked in groups to 

find these on the word map and our class globe, before marking them on their own maps in their exercise books and listing all the countries where tropical rainforests can be found.

 

This week in spelling we learned about words that end with the sound ‘chure’, which is spelled -ture.

  • creature 
  • picture 
  • nature 
  • furniture 
  • capture 
  • culture 
  • moisture 
  • future 
  • gesture 
  • structure

Topic/ Common Exception Words: address, although, column, stretch, beautiful

 

Reminders

All reading folders should now have a label on them with your child’s reading day/s. These are the day/s that we have allocated for them to read with one of us at school, so please make sure that the reading folders come to school. If your child’s book needs changing on another day, you’re welcome to send them in and we will do our best to get the book changed.

 

Before school interventions and booster groups begin at 8.15am. Soft start begins at 8.30am and gives the children time to get ready for their day in a relaxed way whilst also giving us time to address any misconceptions from lessons with specific children. Please ensure that your child arrives on time for these, but similarly not too early. 

Next week we will be continuing with our lessons and celebrating Succot in school in a number of special ways, including whole school tefilah with Hallel and ‘arba minim’, eating in the succah in the Max Weinbaum hall, and visiting the succahs of 2 classmates - many thanks to families Abrahams and Mansfield in advance.

 

Wishing you all chag sameach and Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Jewish Studies - 14th Tishrei - 29th September

 

This week we have moved swiftly from the seriousness of the Yamim Noraim to the happy festival of Sukkot.  Year 4 have been learning about the arba minim, looking at the Hebrew and English names of each of the 4 species, and learning about how we hold them correctly.   They have also learned that each of the 4 represent different parts of the body, and have looked at different mitzvot that we do with each of those four.  The children are really looking forward to the Sukkah visits next week - Sukkot is a time of happiness and celebrating our relationship with Hashem - so here's hoping and praying for a happy, warm and dry weekend so that we can all enjoying being in our Sukkah!

 

I wish you all Shabbat Shalom and Chag Same'ah.

Friday 22nd September 2023

 

Shana tova to all our Year 4 families, we hope you had a wonderful Rosh Hashanah.

 

This week we have been working hard to get some work finished for 2 new displays we are planning in the corridor. One will feature the children’s rainforest descriptive writing, which they have carefully developed and redrafted, and a display of the children’s work about the digestive system in science.

 

In maths, the children learnt about how to represent 4-digit numbers in different ways, including using concrete manipulatives (base 10, place value counters), pictorial drawing and diagrams, numerals and words. They then moved on to learn about how to partition numbers into thousands, hundreds, tens and ones (1432 = 1000 + 400 + 30 + 2), pushing this one step further to partition in a  flexible way (1432 = 1,100 + 300 + 31 + 1 for example though there are many other possibilities). We used Base 10 to make this easier to understand and the children did a brilliant job. Some of them even moved on to making an exchange of some piece, for example 100 for 10 tens, allowing them to be more flexible with their partitioning. 

 

In art we began an exciting new project, researching the life and art of the French painter Henri Rousseau. 

 

We wanted to signpost all parents to the links under the Year 4 heading, which will take you to a page with suggested spelling activities, as well as the Year 3 and 4 Common Exception Words list, and useful information including PE uniform days reminders, our weekly timetable and recommended reading list. 

 

This week in spelling lessons we continued practising words that end with a ‘zshur’ sound, which is spelled -sure. Words with this ending include, among others: 

  • treasure
  • measure
  • pleasure
  • closure
  • exposure
  • enclosure
  • leisure
  • pressure
  • composure

There is an assignment set on Doodle Spell to give the children additional practice.

The exception words for this week were; actual, actually, accident and accidentally.

Some topic words that have been misspelled a lot this week include: practice, column, stretch, beautiful. Please encourage your child to practise these, along with the words above.

Reminders

  • Free readers must bring in their reading folders every Monday, when we will check and sign them.
  • All the children should now have a label on their reading folder, saying which days are their reading days. Please make sure that these are brought in to school on that day/those days each week so that we can read with them. If your child’s reading folder does not have this, please send it in on Monday so that we can make one for them.
  • If at all possible, please aim for your child to arrive in the classroom for 8.30am each day. Soft start is a time for the children to say hello to their friends, prepare for their day (including going to the toilet, filling water bottles, buy stationery, sharpen their pencils and get ready for their day), and a daily activity is prepared. It would be brilliant if all the children had the opportunity to benefit from this time.
  • The weather is becoming a lot cooler and wetter. Please send in appropriate weather-wear for break times.

 

We wish you well over the fast to those who are fasting, and a good year.

 

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Friday 15th September

 

What a busy week we have had in Year 4! The children have been settling into new routines and expectations fantastically, and have produced some amazing work.

 

In English, the children worked on writing a sensory description of the rainforest. We spent a number of lessons focusing on creating and using a mind map as a planning tool and to help develop ideas. We sectioned the mind-map off for each of the 5 senses, and thought about, discussed, shared and developed ideas for each sense separately, going back to different senses when new inspiration struck. The children then used these ideas to write their own descriptive pieces, which we hope to redraft and up-level next week and use to create our first corridor display!

 

In maths this week, the children earned about thousands and we touched on tens of thousands and why the next place value column is not millions. They represented 4 digit numbers in different ways, and applied their knowledge of 1000= 10 hundreds and 1000= 100 tens in different ways. Our remote lesson on Roman numerals shows that they have a good foundation, though the concept that is a numeral with a smaller value precedes a numeral with a larger value then this is subtracted rather than added proved to be a little tricky. There is an assignment set on Doodle Maths so that they can practise.

The spelling rule the children learned about this week was words that end with a ‘zshur’ sound, which is spelled -sure. Words with this ending include, among others: 

Treasure
Measure
pleasure
closure
Exposure
Enclosure
Leisure
Pressure
Composure

The exception words for this week were; actual, actually, accident and accidentally.

Please find some spelling ideas above.

 

In guided reading this week, the children have been focusing on Kid Normal by Greg James and Chris Smith. We have spent a number of lessons reading the text and discussing what is written in depth, gaining understanding of the literary techniques used by the author and how they make the reader feel. The children were all encouraged to read aloud to the class, something they were keen to volunteer for! 

 

It was fantastic to see many of you at our Meet the Teacher evening on Wednesday, thank you for coming. A big well done to the children who participated in our remote lessons, you all did brilliantly.

 

Reminders: To encourage a sense of connection with their school house, please help your child to make sure that they wear their house badge every day.

Some children already need 50p for new equipment for their pen box (lots of ruined pens). Please check with your child and send this in, as some are struggling to remember until they are in a lesson. Consider including a spare coin for next time. Many thanks.

 

We have attached a document below that you could use to help you some questions you could ask your child to help you find out about their day.

 

Questions to ask your child instead of “How was your day?”

Shabbat Shalom and Shana Tova,

 

Mrs Collins, Miss Simon and the Year 4 team

 

Jewish Studies - 22nd Elul : 8th September

Welcome to the new school year - I have really enjoyed starting to get to know your children over the past few days.

 

This week we have started to learn about Rosh Hashanah, refreshing our memories of all things Rosh Hashanah by playing Taboo.  We talked about the concept of Teshuvah, and the children were given a scenario to act out, and to then create a successful form of Teshuvah. I was really impressed by their understanding of this tricky concept as well as their acting skills :)

 

I look forward to meeting with you at the Curriculum Evening next week, and I wish you all Shabbat Shalom and a lovely weekend.

 

Mrs Hill

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