Elm Class 2020-2021
Rivers and Coasts - Summer 2
English Focus Text
This half term, we are reading Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotson.
It is 1910 and Maia, tragically orphaned at thirteen, has been sent from England to start a new life with distant relatives in Manaus, hundreds of miles up the Amazon. She is accompanied by an eccentric and mysterious governess who has secret reasons of her own for making the journey.
World War 2 - Summer 1
As part of our Topic studies, Elm class carried out an investigation to see what materials would have been the best to use to block light from shining through the windows during The Blitz.
First, pupils tested different types of transparent, translucent and opaque materials in a home-made 'light' box, then they look their investigations further by combining materials to see if that had a better effect.
Pupils used their scientific knowledge from Year 5 (Properties of Materials) and Year 6 (Light) to conclude that while the tin foil was was the best for blocking out light, it would have allowed light shining on the windows from outside to reflect back, making it easier for the enemy to identify where buildings were.
World War 2 Artefacts
We were very lucky that some pupils were allowed to bring in precious family artefacts from World War 2, to share with the rest of the class. The classroom was turned into a WW2 memorabilia museum and pupils had the chance to examine the delicate pieces that had been brought in. Artefacts included: photos, ration books, army discharge booklets, letters to home written by family members who served in the war, a diary and even newspaper cuttings about tours that family members had served as part of.
English Focus Text
In English this half term, we will be reading Goodnight Mr Tom by Michelle Magorian.
When the Second World War breaks out, young Willie Beech is evacuated to the countryside. A sad, deprived child, he slowly begins to flourish under the care of kind old Tom Oakley. But then his cruel mother summons him back to war-torn London...
Will he ever see Mister Tom again?
Due to the restrictions of lockdown, Elm class was unable to complete the planned art unit, where they were challenged to design and sew a story tile to add to a whole class quilt, incorporating the styles of the Bayeux Tapestry and Faith Ringgold's art. Therefore, we decided to complete the task once we were back at school, and the results are very impressive. The theme for our quilt was to tell our own story of Lockdown or what the pandemic has meant to us - creating our own representation of an event that will foreve be remembered in history.
The Normans - Spring 1
Here is a selection of the amazing work that was produced as part of our Normans topic last half term, during the period of lockdown. The effort that has gone into producing such fantastic work during such a challenging time is astounding and is an absolute credit to positive work ethic of the pupils of Elm class.
In art, we looked at how the story of the Norman Conquest was told through the Bayeux Tapestry. Pupils were then given a picture stimulus and asked to imagine a story surrounding the image and tell it through pictures.
Next, pupils looked at different ways of creating images using a range of textiles and techniques - adding embellishments, securing different shapes of material together and embroidering designs onto fabric.
Finally, we looked at work by the artist Faith Ringgold, who is famed for her narrative quilts, which focus on civil rights and gender equality, African American life and culture, family joys and hardships, and the education of children.
As part of our English work, Elm class read the novel Anglo-saxon Boy, by Tony Bradman, which tells the story of Magnus Haroldson, son of Harold Godwinson, who was one of the contenders to the English throne in 1066. The story is based on historical events that surround the Battle of Hastings, told through the adventures of the character Magnus.
Using the events of the story and information learned during our Topic History lessons, pupils wrote a newspaper report about the Battle of Hastings, using a variety of reporting techniques.
English Focus Text
To support our Anglo-Saxon Topic, this half term in English our class text will be Anglo-Saxon Boy by Tony Bradman.
1065: Magnus is the son of Harold Godwinson, lord of the Southern Saxons and ruthlessly ambitious claimant to the throne of England. Overnight, Magnus finds himself cast centre-stage in the blood-soaked family feud that led to one of history's most famous battles.
This is the family tragedy behind 1066:
live it with Magnus, as the wolves of history close in on his Anglo-Saxon boyhood.
Plague, Pox and Antibiotics - Autumn 2
Bread making WOW-Out
As part of our Topic this term, and also linked to the Science we have been learning about, we made bread. Bread has been a s5taple part of humans' diet for hundreds of thousands of years and as our topic has been looking at illness and medicine through the ages, it seemed fitting to investigate this ageless classic.
First, we tasted different breads that are currently on the market and saw how bread is mass-produced. Next, we thought about what ingredients would have been available to people in Tudor times (where our Topic started), to see what we could add to our dough to make it more appealing. Finally, we each made and shaped bread dough, adding in an extra ingredient or two.
Once the bread had baked, we tasted and evaluated what we had produced - MOST of the class really enjoyed their bread!
The discovery of Penicillin
As part of our Topic investigation into how medicines have advanced through the ages, we found out about Alexander Flemming and his discovery of penicillin - a mould based medicine which destroys many different bacteria.
In groups, pupils were asked to perform a freeze to show which point in the discovery timeline they felt was the most significant to the production of the medicine that we know and use today.
Plague Pox and Antibiotics Wow-In
To kick-off our new Topic, Elm class took part in a carousel of activities to explore Tudor medicine, the weird and wonderful remedies used and 'medical' roles that were undertaken by society at the time. Pupils had the opportunity to:
- Make a Plague Doctor mask
- Create natural 'healing positions' like the Apothecaries at the time
- Research remedies and useful information like Monks
- Use picture sources to explore Barber Surgeon tools
- Investigate the healing properties of herbs that Herbwives prescribed
English Focus Text
This half term in English, we will be studying a book by a significant author: Northern Lights by Phillip Pullman.
Lyra Belacqua and her animal daemon live half-wild and carefree among the scholars of Jordan College, Oxford. Her destiny will take her to the frozen lands of the Arctic, where witch-clans reign and ice-bears fight. And the extraordinary journey that awaits her will have immeasurable consequences far beyond her own world...
Sahara Desert - Autumn 1
English Focus Text
Elm class's first focus text for this year is set in Egypt, on the edge of the Sahara Desert. The Day of Ahmed's Secret, by Florence Parry Heide & Judith Heide Gilliand, sees the young Ahmed going about his daily work, whilst carrying an exciting and potentially life-changing secret...
Trucks and donkeys, cars and camels, carts and buses... the bustling streets of Cairo are exciting, but today Ahmed will share his secret, which is even more exciting.