Welcome to Year 6 - Torak Base!
Buddy Reading with Year 1
When the children were in Year 5, they buddied up with the new Reception children and shared reading with them each week. Now they are all a year older and the smaller children continue to look up to the Year 6 children, who hear their buddies read aloud once a week and then Year 6 read them a story. It is really lovely to see our children taking this responsibility seriously and encouraging the little ones with their reading, including helping them sound out high frequency words.
Week 1 - Flying by!
The new Year 6 class have got off to a magnificent start, working their socks off this week, as they get to grips with a packed timetable, new routines and very high expectations of behaviour and academic work.
As you will soon know, we have renamed our houses Badger (green), Otter (yellow), Kingfisher (blue) and Woodpecker (red) and reallocated children to the new houses, to even up numbers. Tomorrow is the first challenge for our new Year 6 children as some of them put themselves forward to be elected as House Captain or Vice House Captain. To do this, they need to make a speech to their house, explaining why they would make a good House Captain or Vice Captain. The children in that house will then vote, and by the end of Monday, 8 children will have a new responsibility in this, their final year.
PE is outside on a Tuesday with the sports coach and inside on a Thursday afternoon with Mr Marklew. Please ensure your PE kit and suitable PE shoes are in school on these days, or you will be unable to join in.
Homework spellings are given out on a Monday, for testing the following Monday. Written homework is sent home on a Friday to be completed and returned to school on a Monday. For more advice on homework, please see the separate homework section.
Important Dates to note
The Blandford School open evening 20th September
Brenscombe residential trip Weds 26th to Friday 28th September
Year 6 Class Assembly Friday 5th October
Wow! What a show! From reading through the script 4 weeks ago to today's singing, dancing and acting! Many thanks to the parents for their wonderful costumes and to those who helped with the hour of face painting needed before each performance. The children were true professionals and didn't complain about the heat at all, despite rehearsing in the hottest June the UK has ever known.
Enjoy the photos!
Salisbury Cathedral Leavers Service 2018
Today, on one of the hottest days of the year, year 6 were in the cool, airy space of Salisbury Cathedral all day. We were taking part, along with 8 other schools in a day of celebration to mark the end of Primary school in the Diocese of Salisbury.
During the morning, we all learnt songs for the afternoon service, then took part in either drama or art workshops, creating drama and art for the service in the afternoon. The drama and service were put together by the Rise Theatre company, who had also written The Miracle Seed Song for us to learn and perform.
Staying Safe On Line
Today, Year 6 had a visit from Mark from Dorset Police's Safer Schools Team. He talked about the importance of staying safe online and how to behave kindly online. Year 6 were shocked to discover that most of the apps they access are actually for 13 years and over, eg, Instagram, Youtube, WhatsApp. Of the app logos shown in the photo above, only 3 are actually allowed for 10 and 11 year olds.
For further advice, go to ThinkuKnow, which is a police backed internet education site. Also there is a free magazine, called Digital Parenting, produced by Vodafone. You can see the latest issue and the best of previous issues of Digital Parenting on the website www.vodafone.com/digitalparenting.
Here you can find information on specific concerns, such as cyberbullying or sexting, and keep up to date with the social media platforms that are proving so popular with our children.
Water Walking Experiment
In Science this week, we have been experimenting with water and coloured ink, to see if we can make water "walk" from one glass to another.
Read Molly's write-up of the experiment below and admire the quality of her handwriting and sentence construction.
Arts Week in Progress
Just a hint of what you will see if you come to the Year 6 art showcase on Friday afternoon.
Post- SATs Fun Day
On Friday at the end of SATs week,Year 6 were rewarded for working so hard by having a morning of outdoor fun. The challenge was to create a shelter/den out of the tarpaulins, string and natural materials available around the field.
Maths Matters 2018
The Maths Matters Day is when The Blandford School host all of the Blandford Schools Network primary schools for a day of maths problem solving. Each school has to devise and run maths activities for an hour and children are split into 2 groups: one group to be teachers, one group to be learners.
Salisbury Cathedral Trip March 2018
On Thursday 8th March, Year 6 went to Salisbury Cathedral as part of our curriculum studies in RE and art. Whilst there, they had a tour of the Cathedral. considering it as a historical place of worship and learned about modern links with work in the Sudan. In the afternoon, we had a clay workshop, making gargoyles similar to those on the West End of the Cathedral, then had an entertaining and interesting organ demonstration from the organ scholar.
Snow Day Activities - Thursday 1st March 2018
1. Write a Story
One of the things we were going to do today as part of World Book Day was to write our entries for the National Rotary Young Writers Competition. We were given an extension to the normal entry date, so that we could do this as part of World Book Day.
This is a national competition and the details are as follows:-
To produce a written or typed story entitled, 'A Different Perspective' . The entry could be fiction or non-fiction, a story or a poem, as long as the piece relates to the theme. The suggested length is an A4 page or 500 words. This means that you could write a diary entry, a recount of your snowy day (how Blandford looks in the snow would count as a different perspective), a poem, a report on seeing Dippy the Dinosaur, or a balanced argument/discussion on anything from your perspective.
Entries will be judged on imagination, interest and (if a discussion) your powers of persuasion. You may use a computer and spellcheck, or even enlist adult help with checking spelling. Please bring your entries with you to school and I will ask your parents to fill in the entry form.
2. Interland Game
This is an e-safety online game, (rated very highly by boys in my class), which is not only very safe for children, but teaches them about internet safety as well.
This is great for maths reasoning problems, balancing equations and missing number equations. Choose from easy/medium/hard/expert/master. Start with easy!
I have set one more test on spag.com for you all. It is Key Stage 2 SATs Grammar Test G. Also, finish off any spag tests you haven't yet done.
World Book Day corner book mark competition - just for our class! A prize for the person who makes me the most beautiful corner book mark for the 3 reading books I have on the go at the moment. Some of the bookmarks made for Enterprise were amazing.
As it is World Book Day, why not take some Wild Weather Extreme Reading photos? Send them into the school office email address or to our Twitter account: @bsmprimaryhead
January 2018 - Guided Reading in Year 6
You may have learned from your child, that this year, we have trialled a different way of guided reading in Year 6. Everybody reads the same book, with a copy each, or at minimum, one between two and we read 4 times a week after lunch. Children take it in turns to read a section aloud; all children take part, and the improvement of reading out loud, has been staggering. We have seen a corresponding improvement in children understanding what they read, as the reading out loud is complemented by discussion, questions, opinions and on some days vocabulary work based around the pages read.
So far, we have read Wonder by R J Palacio and Skellig by David Almond. The children have recently written book reviews of Skellig, and you can tell from their reviews the effect this particular book has had on them.
Skellig is a fiction book written by David Almond. This book is about a boy named Michael, who steps into a crumbling garage and finds a creature. First of all, all the creature wants is food, Chinese, 27 and 53, then he gets stronger and helps a baby survive through the operations.
This book is great, and would be appropriate for children, aged 10+. I like the part where Skellig flies away and lives happily where birds feed him.
My favourite character is Skellig, because he inspires me to get stronger and stronger by never giving up. I would recommend this book for people who like creatures that aren't real.
Skellig is a children's book by David Almond; it's a really good book to read if you're in a really bad mood, or in a sad mood, any mood!
I would recommend this book to loads of people. It's just so wonderful to read; I'm in love with this book - sometimes its emotion hits mine. My favourite character is Mina; she is so supportive for Michael and Skellig. Mina is so clever and knows a lot of things from her mum because she is homeschooled by her mum.
My favourite bit was when the baby didn't die, and they called her Joy because she's always joyful. The bit I didn't like was when Skellig was hurt and the baby nearly died.
Spring Term - Mock SATs week
You will have seen from our half-termly curriculum letter that this term we have both enterprise week and our mock SATs.
Mock SATs will take place on the following days and the results will be given to parents during parent consultations the week after, on 5th and 7th February.
Thursday 25th January - Reading Paper
Friday 26th January - Grammar, Punctuation & Spelling papers
Monday 29th January - Maths Paper 1 (Arithmetic) & Maths Paper 2 (Reasoning)
Tuesday 30th January - Maths Paper 3 (Reasoning)
Christmas Week in Year 6
Below are a selection of photographs of this week's events in Year 6. I would like to say a huge thank you to all the parents for extremely generous gifts.
Watch out for a Christmas calendar coming home next week! There has been some beautiful artwork going on in Year 6 this week.
Year 6 have started making hand sculptures out of modroc plaster bandages. It is very messy and a lot of fun, required latex gloves to protect skin, vaseline to make sure the plaster slides off and plaster bandages. The trick, we discovered, is to start wiggling your fingers before the plaster has set, before the hand is completely immobilised!
Buddy Reading with Year 1
Once a week Year 6 help with reading in Year 1. They each have a "buddy" who they befriended last year and on a Tuesday, they hear their buddy read.
Harvest Service 11th October 2017
On Wednesday afternoon, the whole school walked to Blandford Parish Church to take part in our Harvest Service. During the service, the school sang 3 songs, prayers by Year 3 & 4 were read and the choir sang "Time for Everything". The children listened to a short talk by Jonathan Triffitt, and upon their return to school Year 6 wrote reflections upon Harvest, some of which you can read here. There are more on display in the classroom and in our Year 6 Class Reflection Diary.
Reading World Cup
Back on Transfer Day in July, the children took part in a Reading World Cup, where they reviewed 20 or more books that had been selected for Year 6. They then voted and came up with a list of books, which they wanted read to them.
Top of the list was Stormbreaker, which we finished before we went to Brenscombe. If you haven't read it, then do! Ask your child about this book. We are now well into the next book, Cogheart.
Brenscombe Outdoor Centre Trip September 2017
Wow! What a trip! The teachers had a great time, despite the lack of sleep. Between us we sent 10 or more tweets, took 350 photos and lots of video. You can find some of the photos and videos below.
Come to our Class Assembly on Friday morning to hear first hand from the children about their experiences.
15th September 2017
We have had a whirlwind first 2 weeks in Torak Base, as the children pick up new routines and begin to understand the responsibilities and expectations that come with being in Year 6. We have elected our School Council members: Lily and Ryan and have elected Houses Captains and Vice Captains, who will begin to take up their roles next week, beginning with the ever-important tallying up of House Points gained in the first 2 weeks of school.
I am delighted to say that we won the weekly Attendance Cup for our 100% attendance during the first week of term!
Games is scheduled for Monday afternoon and PE for Thursday morning, but please get into the habit of bringing your PE kit (indoor and outdoor) to school on a Monday and taking it home on a Friday for a wash. Planners and your reading books need to be in school every day. Have a read through the Powerpoint presentation that has been put together to help you.
Our Class Charter
At the start of term, we always spend some time talking about what makes school work well and the children draw up a class charter of agreed behaviour, rights and responsibilities.
Reviewing some of the week completed at the end of their last week in Year 5, I was very taken by the following work done by one member of the class on her personal "10 Commandments" (although there are 8!).
1. Respect different religions and their opinions.
2. Love one another and make the world a loving place to be.
3. Help the people who need support in their lives.
4. Don't judge people about their looks and differences.
5. Look after the environment.
6. Be grateful for what you have and what you need.
7. Be honest and tell the truth to make life an easier world.
8. There is always a way out of things. Just look on the bright side and find a solution to problems.
THIS MARKS THE END OF 2016 2017 ACADEMIC YEAR
RESULTS FOR SATS WERE 92% PASSED GPAS, 88% PASSED MATHS, 83% PASSED READING, 80% PASSED WRITING.
67% PASSED READING, WRITING, MATHS COMBINED. ABOVE NATIONAL TARGETS.
GO BLANDFORD ST MARY PRIMARY!!!
EXTRAORDINARY RESULTS FROM AN EXTRAORDINARY BUNCH OF CHILDREN.
Alice the Musical - July 2017
Well, what a show! Yet again, the children from Year 5 & 6 exceeded expectations and entertained the audience, with a riotous mixture of talent and comedy. First time I have heard the headmaster laugh out loud helplessly, so well done the Mock Turtle going for his cadenza!
Below are some of the photos taken at rehearsal (before all the set was up - sorry!)
House Points and Ace Points
The first few children have gained their House Points and Ace Points. Well done all of you!
Post SATs fun day
On the Friday after SATs finished Year 6 had a fun day, based at school, where they prepared a picnic for their parents, built shelters outside and watched the DVD of "Holes", which we have been reading in class.
VALUES FOR LIFE - RESPONSIBILITY
Each of the year groups has been tasked with making a banner for the school hall to portray one of our new school values. Year 6 have the task of making the banner for the value of Responsibility.
After brainstorming and coming up with a series of images, all the children have been working on their own small part of our banner. Tasks have included drawing and cutting out hands, a dove, a world map, little people and an image of God!
You can see all the children getting to grips with sewing today!
IT'S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN!!!
After the Easter holiday fortnight, we have 9 days of lessons before the children take their SATs papers. I am personally quite excited about it all, because the children have made such HUGE progress this term, and I would like that progress to be officially recognised by their SATs results.
Needless to say, we will be working our socks off for those 9 days, revising and practising papers. To help things along, I have made available on the SATs star above some packs of SATs papers for further practice. Don't forget about SPAG,com, where I will set lots more tests, all of which can be repeated up to 4 times, as each time the children learn from their previous mistakes.
Don't forget also the CGP SATs buster books which we have provided. All of the maths books could now be completed if you wish, but as a minimum, all of the Arithmetic booklet should be completed and marked.
Have a lovely holiday and I look foward to seeing some of you at the Easter booster classes.
As a school, we have paid for a subscription to spag.com for each child in Year 6 to help them prepare for their Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling paper in May. The children have been given their own log-in and may complete tests and exercises which I set them. They can then click on the questions they have made a mistake in and see the correct answer. Children who regularly practise on spag.com gain higher marks than those who don't!
Today the children have done a 50 mark online spag test, which they can sit one more time at home. I will then set other exercises based on the mark analysis.
Whole-school Science Day March 8th
On Wednesday the whole school took part in a Science experiment day, based on the problem of how to protect strawberries from a drop. The children had to plan, design, test and review their devised experiments. Here you can see in the photos some of the ingenious ways they came up with to protect their precious strawberries.
Reflections on Life
Amaya wrote the following diary extract after being part of the group that visited Castleman House:-
Today is World Book Day and I was one of the fourteen children chosen to go to an elderly home, which is called Castleman House. To get there, we went through the meadow, up the trailway and up the road. My friends and I dressed up as the three little pigs. All fourteen of the children chosen had prepared jokes, poems, quotes and stories. My friends and I did the story of the three little pigs.
After we had all done our readings, we had juice and biscuits. I had thought that me and all the other children coming to the elderly home meant nothing to them but an ordinary day. Then I thought more carefully. I saw one man that had lost his arm; also most of the other elderly people were in wheelchairs. I realised that it's a moment when the elderly people can foget about all their problems in life and remember that life can be fun.
This experience has made me realise that the most littlest of things can make a big difference to someone else and that by doing the most simplest things can make the world a better place. I'm looking foward to going back and helping the elderly people as much as I can and I want to get to know them better. Also I want to hear all about their lives.
World Book Day
Today on World Book Day, a group of Year 6 children went to Castleman House in Blandford to perform a selection of poems, stories, and jokes to the residents there. The residents were delighted with the children’s costumes and performances, as we had children dressed as the BFG, Dobby, Alice In Wonderland and the Three Little Pigs among our children. Lois stunned everyone with her performances of poems she had written herself, Thomas told the story of Beadle the Bard and Nathaniel and Daniel were a very entertaining comedy duo, who performed Nathaniel’s jokes. Nathaniel has written a series of jokes which play on homophones. The residents particularly enjoyed joining in the telling of the Three Little Pigs.
Spring Term 2nd Half
Rotary Club Young Writers Competition
The closing date for the Rotary Young Writers Competition is Monday 6th March for our school. Some of the children have chosen to complete theirs at home and type them up and these need to be back by Monday 6th March at the very latest, along with the relevant permission slip.
World Book Day - Thursday 2nd March
We are looking forward to World Book Day when some of our class will be going to Castleman House (dressed up as book characters, including staff!) to celebrate World Book Day with an informal presentation of poems, stories and songs. The children have volunteered to be part of the important task of beginning to establish deeper links with our community in Blandford. We hope this will be one of regular visits that the school will make to Castleman House.
Enterprise Week Market
The children have learned about the whole design process from original ideas, to concept board to design briefs. Then they were tasked with making the products, advertising them in poster and in a sales pitch, and finally selling their goods at the Enterprise Market this afternoon.
All of our home-made items sold extremely well. We sold out of Jelly Bean Creatures and Magic Balloons before the end of the fair. We had to discount a few products to clear them and we made a loss on the glow-sticks. Overall, our profit was £45 and we came 4th.
Some children showed a real flair for selling, and loved it. All the children were generous with their time helping the younger children sell their goods and handle money. You can see below the photos from today and some of the design work that the children have completed this week.
Next week, we will be designing, creating and selling our products for the Enterprise Market on Friday afternoon. We will be making products on Monday afternoon, Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday afternoon between 2 and 3.15pm each day. If you are able to come and help, an extra 2 or 3 adults on each afternoon would be most helpful, but be prepared to get sticky!
This is a little preview of the products we will be making:- (click on the links below)
If you have any of the following at home, and would be happy for us to recycle them/use them, please could you send them in.
Broken wax crayons, all colours
Heart shaped baking trays
Brightly coloured nail varnish, ie bright blue/green/orange/pink/neon for putting decorations on the pegs for the butterflies.
Year 6 have been demonstrating some superb writing this week, in response to the book The Tear Thief. Some of the work, in newspaper report form, was so entertaining that it deserves to be seen by more people than just the teacher and TA!
Year 6 Assembly 13th January 2017
This morning, year 6 shared some of their learning from the last week. They have based this on The Tear Thief and shared role-play drama, story-telling and some of their creative writing. We hope the photos below will give you an insight into this book.
January 2017 - Happy New Year
This term is going to be packed with learning! We have made a great start on a beautiful English story called The Tear Thief and would love it if you could join us this Friday 13th January for our Year 6 assembly, when we will be telling the story of The Tear Thief.
We had a fabulous party day yesterday in year 6. The children were beautifully behaved, polite and courteous. Santa arrived in the afternoon with presents for the class, which they are going to play with today, before our final assembly. Thank you for a great term, year 6 and for your cards and presents.
HAVE A REST!
We have been enjoying lots of different craft activities this week. Below are some of the pictures from our wreath making and calendar making sessions The wreaths were very fiddly and prickly to make, but looked beautiful with the fresh holly and ivy from Mrs Newlin's garden.
The children were offered a choice of homework tasks last weekend; one of the tasks being to write a poem on the topic of Dorset.
Wonderful, wild Dorset,
Thomas Hardy's home.
Where thriving nature grows,
and hunter-gatherers did roam.
Dinosaurs once roam the county,
searching for its glorious bounty.
And the place that I call home! by Lois
Who am I?
Lurking in the shadows,
Ferociously for a fight.
Feasts on worms and grubs,
Not many see the light.
It is known to be a type of drink,
And an unhealthy one, at that!
They have two black stripes upon their head,
Like a fluffy, woolly hat! by Nathaniel
Music World is a Charanga programme especially for children to use themselves. It's a safe online space where children can learn more about music and practise their instrument if they are learning to play. Every child in Year 6 can access Music World as part of our school's licence.
Children love Music World with its avatars and fun music activities and they enjoy playing the musical games and earning coins and badges as they progress. All the children have their own passwords and there is no "chatroom" type access, so it is completely safe for them to use. Charanga Music provides simple independent learning for children.
We have started reading Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver as a class reader and using it as a starting point for English work and cross curricular work for science and geography.
We have also listened to some of the book on Youtube, read by Sir Ian McKellen and the link is here
Here is a selection of the artwork connected with the book that the class have just finished.
BRENSCOMBE RESIDENTIAL TRIP 2016
We took many short videos and over 400 photographs of the class during the Brenscombe residential trip in September 2016. Some of the photos and video you have seen in the Brenscombe video, which we premiered in our Class Assembly in October. Below are some short video clips, which offer a snapshot into the Brenscombe activities of raft building and bushcraft.