Year 4 Curriculum Newsletter for Spring 2
Here is an overview of what your child will be learning this half term in the different subject areas. The Learning Challenge focus usually encompasses several curriculum areas. If you have any questions about the learning this half term, please contact us as we are more than happy to discuss any queries with you.
Victoria Henson, Robyn Hayton
Learning Challenge: Can we save the world?
As part of their topic work this half term the children will be learning about human geography. We will be asking the question, 'Can we save the world?' as we consider the effect global warming is having on our planet. We will learn about the different things humans are doing to affect the environment, including deforestation, burning fossil fuels and our carbon footprint. We will consider some of the changes we can make in our own lives to reduce the effects of global warming such as reducing, reusing and recycling. They will find out about land use and how it alters around the world. The children will also learn about the impact of humans on their planet and global warming. The children will then go on to consider how to live responsibly in the environment and the responsibilities of large scale industries and governments. They will develop this further through a creative project.
Using a short film-clip from Wall-E as inspiration, the children will be learning about how to write poetry using similes, metaphors and personification. In their non-narrative work, children will be building on some of the persuasive writing they covered in the Spring term, and write letters to persuade others to make changes in their lives to reduce their carbon footprint. Children will explore spelling rules and patterns in daily lessons and should also continue to learn the Year 4 spelling lists. Handwriting is, as always, a strong focus for us at Springbank and children are given regular sessions to practice different letters and joins. Year 4 are also excited to be continuing our class novel ‘Varjak Paw’ by SF Said. The children will carry out a range of follow up activities in our reading sessions to look at the story in more depth. These will contain discussion aspects, not only to develop the children’s reading and understanding, but also speaking and listening. We will also use the book to teach a weekly reading comprehension lesson, this half term these will be moving towards interpreting the text and justifying our ideas with evidence. We will also be using this book as a stimulus for children to plan and write their own stories using lots of figurative language and description.
In maths this half term, there will be a focus on fractions. An important strand to this unit is converting between fractions and finding how they are equivalent. The children will explore this in depth, developing their understanding of fractions of amounts as well as refering to their understanding of division to problem solve. Children will continue comparing fractions, considering their value as well as learning to add and subtract fractions and the way that this works. We will be using the phrase, ‘equal amounts of a whole’ throughout the unit and developing childrens conceptual understanding of what this means. Alonngside this, children will continue to develop their times table fluency through our Times Table Rockstars approach and children will continue to build on their learning at school by practising on Times Table Rockstars regularly.
This half term our science topic is all about changing states. The children will learn about solids, liquids and gases and discover how matter changes between these states. Linking to our learning challenge the children will discover how this links to the water cycle and answer the question “Why do puddles disappear?”
Geography will be taught through the learning challenge this half term.
Our R.E this half term continues the theme of words of wisdom. This unit uses examples from Sikhs, Christians and Muslims to enable pupils to think for themselves about sources of guidance or wisdom in their own lives. Stories and sayings from the religions are used, not for skills of recall and memory, but for the opportunity they provide to reflect upon the pupils’ own values and experiences. The unit is a very holistic one, which encourages children to be reflective and contains methods of stilling (such as meditation and mindfulness), guided story and guided reflection. The unit helps the children to learn from religion about their own individual spiritual development.
This half term, the children will be continuing their swimming lessons on Mondays for 4HA and Friday for 4HE. The children have been really enjoying these sessions and are showing signs of good progress. In our further lessons at school, Year 4 will be developing their hockey skills.
During Spring 2 the children will develop their understanding of risk taking and decision making. They move from looking at general risk-taking activities to considering choices related to taking risks with their health. They will learn to identify factors that affect their choices and practise skills for resisting peer pressure and other influences. They learn the importance of making informed choices about their health. There is a specific focus on alcohol.
This half-term in French, the children will be learning how to ask questions and give responses about themselves. They will take part in lots of speaking and listening activities to build on their confidence in having short conversations. They will be writing descriptions of themselves too. They will learn about Easter traditions and will be writing sentences using their knowledge of adjectives and conjunctions.
The children will be using garage band on the iPads this half term and will be working in small groups to create a song about the environment to go with our ‘Can you save the world’ topic.
In Music this half-term, the children will be singing with awareness of features that influence the ‘tone-colour’ of the singing voice. They will sense the pitch movements in song melody and show this using hand movement. They will use chime bars to illustrate pitch changes. They will also be exploring music from a range of genres and learning about the history of some of this music, as well as some well-known musical artists.
As part of our work on sustainability this half term, children will be designing and making a recipe which uses sustainable food ingredients. As part of this project, children will have the opportunity to plant and maintain their own vegetable plot in the school garden.