Welcome to Year 6
Teacher: Mrs. Buck
Student Teacher: Mrs. Gledhill
Classroom Assistant: Mrs. Bardell
Learning Support Assistant: Mrs. Fenton
Read through our diary at the top of the page to find out all of the exciting things we get up to as they happen. Timetables, homework information and kit lists can be found towards the bottom of the page and in the middle you'll find information about our curriculum and what we are studying. There will be links to take you to other websites and pages that can help you find out more information or give you opportunities to do some follow-up learning at home. If you'd like to see anything in particular on our page, please let us know.
Nuclear Testing 13.11.19
Whilst at the National Memorial Arboretum a couple of weeks ago, the children of Year 6 got talking to a gentleman whose relative had been on Christmas Island at the time of the nuclear weapon tests. Since then, we have been in contact with the representative of British Nuclear Test Veterans Association (BNTVA) and today he visited us at Millfield. The children were enthralled by Alan's accounts of the weapon testing that took place from the 1950s - 90s and they were delighted with their challenge medals that they were given as a memento of the visit.
Branching Out 12.11.19
We've been making branching keys so that we can sort living things. We started by sorting Liquorice Allsorts and finally produced a key that can sort 12 different broadleaf trees. We know the difference between simple and compound leaves and we can talk about leaves that are arranged in a pinnate or a palmate pattern.
Follow the link below to answer other questions on branching keys and how trees grow:
Commemoration Stones 11.11.19
Thanks to all of the parents who came to school to dedicate a stone to our art installation. We hope to get the stones along the canal bank as soon as possible.
Times Table Rock Stars
Year 6 are well on their way to becoming rock stars with the help of our new times tables program.
The children had a really important lesson this morning - how to help someone whose heart had stopped. They learned that they needed to call for help quickly, put the person into the recovery position, deliver chest compressions and follow the instructions to use a defibrillator confidently.
Harvest Festival Celebrations 11.10.19
Well done to the Year 6 readers who read the prayers for the Harvest Festival at St James' church on Friday. Thank you to all of the parents that joined us.
RAF Cosford 09.10.19 & 10.10.19
We've just had the two most enjoyable days discovering the aircraft of WW1. Armed with our Busy Books we researched the aircraft that had taken part in WW1. We asked questions and listened carefully to the people that worked at the museum who took time to explain about the planes and the history that went with their service.
"Hang on...I just need to write down what that man said before
I forget it."
We made lots of notes and discovered the stories behind the planes and what part in history they played.
"I didn't know writing could be this exciting!"
Some of the craft were huge, we couldn't believe that tanks could fit in them, yet some of the planes were only just over 7m long; nonetheless, the sense of awe and wonder that they filled us with was inspiring.
"Can we come again?"
We sketched our favourite WW1 plane so that we could include it in the report we'll write when we get back to school.
We've been discovering how to use repeat loops in our algorithms.
Branching Keys 01.10.19
As part of our Science learning we sorted Liquorice Allsorts using a branching key system. We're moving on to leaves next!
First Canal Clearance of the Year 27.09.19
Do you remember that downpour that we had on Friday afternoon? We were in it! Year 6 bravely soldiered on through the rain to help make sure that our canal environment is the best it can be.
We litter picked from the towpath and from the water in canoes.
We also had a look at the different anti-social problems that we have on the stretch of the canal that we have adopted. We definitely need to point out the risks associated with dog mess as we had to be very careful not to tread in it and get it all over our shoes which would then get onto our hands when we came to take off our shoes later.
We're going to discuss these issues in class and decide on what we can do to help make the canal environment a lovely place to be for everyone...so watch this space!
Birmingham Dogs' Home 23.09.19
We were treated to a visit from The Birmingham Dogs' Home today. We learned all about how dogs are looked after and how we can keep safe around dogs.
Silver Birch Credit Cards 20.09.19
All you need is your credit card! Well, nearly.
We put masking tape where we wanted the trunks of our silver birch trees to be and then we put a watercolour wash over as the background to our trees. When the paint had dried we used black acrylic paint to give the illusion of the characteristic diamond-shaped fissures that appear on the trunk of the silver birch. To create the effect we dipped the edge of the credit card into the acrylic paint and then drew it over the paper from both sides of the trunk. It looks really impressive when finished.
Strawberries on the Canal 19.09.19
We've been busy this afternoon on the canal bank.
In our science lessons we've been talking about the classification system - in particular the plant kingdom. We were fascinated by the strawberry plant and that it has the ability to reproduce by growing "runners" or stolons which will grow roots and eventually become a daughter plant. We decided to plant strawberry plants all along the canal bank so that next year we will hopefully have strawberries and cream! (We did have to do some weeding first!)
Knife Crime Workshop 17.09.19
Year 6 took part in the knife crime workshop so that they are aware of the dangers that are out there and so they know how to keep themselves and others safe. During the workshop they discussed what a community was and what makes it good or bad. They shared ideas about what their perfect community would look like and how they can all take responsibility for making their neighbourhood a safer place. Year 6 showed great maturity during the session and shared some meaningful insights of their fears and ideals.
Circus Skills 16.09.19
Well, this afternoon Year 6 had some fun learning how to juggle and spin plates. Have a look at the photos to see who had mastered the skill by the end of the day.
We're Back from Beau 13.09.19
It's been a fab week at camp and apart from Monday the only rain we had was whilst we were sleeping! Have a look at the photos to see how Year 6 spent their week.
Monday: The children chose where to pitch their tents before having a mountain biking session or foraging for blackberries. After the first night's BBQ, they helped to chop the firewood for the fire that evening.
Tuesday: After cooking their own bacon sandwiches the children either set off for a day canoeing on the canal and river trip or got into two groups for the campsite activities. Those out canoeing travelled over to Wolseley Bridge to travel up the Trent and Mersey Canal and then down the River Trent. The groups staying at Beaudesert enjoyed a knife skills session or made a natural wreath to lay on the graves at the Cannock Chase War Cemetery. The children cooked their own pasta dishes for tea. They were delicious - and they did the washing up!
Wednesday: Today, the children cooked their own sausage sandwiches for breakfast before beginning the activities. The groups changed over today which meant that everyone got a chance to do all of the activities. It was rice night tonight - some of the dishes that the children cooked on the Eco Stoves included chicken tikka masala, chicken korma and beef with noodles.
Thursday: After breakfast we drove up to Dovedale, one of the National Nature Reserves, and walked along the River Dove. We ate our packed lunches in a cave along the route.
Friday: After packing away camp the children had the opportunity of visiting the gift shop before returning to school. Another successful week at camp completed.
We estimated the age of some of the trees in our school grounds by measuring the circumference of the trunk in centimetres at one metre above the ground then dividing that measurement by 1.5, 2 or 2.5. We also estimated the height of the trees using a pencil and lots of metre sticks.
One of the first books that we will read as a class is Over the Line by children's author, Tom Palmer.
A powerful historical novel about one footballer’s experience in the First World War. It’s 1914 and Jack is making his debut as a professional footballer. But the match is marred by a demonstration demanding that the players sign up to do their duty in France. It is not long before Jack is bound for the trenches with the Footballers’ Battalion.
We've been sharpening our map reading skills before we go to camp and now we can use 6-figure grid references. We've made our own OS map of the area that we will be walking in.
In the Autumn Term we begin the topic of War. This year we hope to research many different conflicts including WWI and WWII. We hope to be visiting the Cannock Chase War Cemetery and The Cannock Chase German Military Cemetery next week so that we can lay wreaths at the graves of the soldiers that we have researched.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) website holds a wealth of information about servicemen that lost their lives at war. Click on the following link if you'd like to find out more:
In the next few weeks we are going to research how World War I started and how it changed the lives of people in Britain. Click here to go to the BBC Bitesize site to see how devastating its effects were.
Our first topic this year is Living Things and Their Habitats. We have started by thinking about the plant kingdom within the classification system and have become familiar with lots of the specific vocabulary associated with trees such as serrated and lobed to describe the leaf margin and simple and compound to describe their shape. We can identify a silver birch, oak, horse chestnut, sycamore and willow - just some of the species that grow in our grounds.
Homework is usually handed out each Thursday and is expected to be returned completed by the following Tuesday (Wednesday at the latest). Those children that do not meet the deadline can complete their homework in ‘homework catch-up sessions’.
All of the children know that if they have any problems with their homework they can just ask for help.
The correct school kit is:
Black sweatshirt (can be zipped)
Black jogging bottoms (in winter)
Year 6 will have PE and outdoor education on a Wednesday afternoon so please make sure you have the correct kit with you. If you are a member of the school's sports teams you may need your kit at different times. It is the best policy to bring a clean kit to school on Monday morning and leave it here all week and then you're ready for any impromptu sports lessons that may occur!
Critical Skills Classes
By the end of Year 6, children should have mastered the critical skills involved with swimming which include: being able to swim 25 metres, being competent at two different strokes, having the ability to float and tread water and knowing the rules associated with swimming in swimming pools and open water.
To enable them to accomplish these skills Year 6 will have swimming lessons at some point during the year but this has yet to be arranged.
Children may be invited to attend early morning fun sessions in the swimming pool at 7.30am. During these sessions they can play with the floats, balls and woggles and splash around as much as they like! Children will be informed of any sessions as they become available.
For all sessions in the school pool children must have the appropriate swimwear on - tight fitting trunks for the boys (no baggy shorts) and a full swimming costume for the girls (no bikinis). They are not allowed in the water wearing any jewellery and they must wear a swim cap at all times. Children can only wear goggles if they have a medical need which is supported by a letter from the medical profession.
At times during the weekly timetable, we will spend time outside learning and working in our school grounds. For this reason, it would be ideal to have an outdoor kit here at school at all times. This can be a warm change of clothes that you don't mind getting dirty. We have wellies for children to borrow at school, however, you are always welcome to bring your own.
As part of our curriculum Year 6 children continue to develop their kayaking, canoeing, hill walking and orienteering skills throughout the year. Whatever the weather – we’re out there!!
Year 6 children have the opportunity to go long distance walking – both for pleasure and fitness purposes. The school offers every child a set of waterproofs, thermals, fleeces, walking boots and even a rucksack!
Kayaking and Canoeing:
At different times throughout the year (to be arranged) you are almost certain to find a small group of Year 6 “messing about on the water”. Of course, we have fully trained staff to oversee every session.
We have an outdoor orienteering course in our very own wild area which children get to use as part of adventure days and outdoor learning sessions.
The school has purchased a number of mountain bikes that the children can use on a daily basis at lunch time or as part of a programme to gain their bicycle skills certificates.
Rocket Stove Cooking:
Not just at camp! The school have 5 Eco stoves that the children can cook on.