Welcome to Year 6 - Torak Base!
September 2019 - July 2020
Lest We Forget
As part of our work towards Remembrance Day and Armistice Day, we made felt poppies, as well as charcoal pictures, to share at our school Remembrance Service.
An Old Dorset Legend
After Brenscombe, the children learnt a legend called Bowerman's Nose, which was performed during our class assembly. They then rewrote it as a Dorset legend, to explain how either Dancing Ledge or Hedworth Quarry were named. Here are some of the legends, which have all been displayed in the classroom.
Brenscombe September 2019 Outdoor Education
Icebreaking activities on arrival
Welcome to Year 6 Information Meeting 9th September 2019
Please find attached links to the Curriculum letter and map, and also the Powerpoint from the meeting today.
Year 6 Music Lessons
As part of our wider curriculum, Year 6 are learning to play the Glockenspiel in their music lessons this term. Watch our for their performance at a future class assembly! You can see the enjoyment and concentration on their faces from the photos!
8th September 2019
Our term has got off to a fabulous start, with the children welcoming one new pupil to the class, and showing myself and Mrs Dolman, just how ready for Year 6 they are.
We have prepared for and held the hustings for House Captains and Vice House Captains. The voting was very close: there are many children able and willing to be leaders in this class and other roles and responsibilities will come to them in due course, I am sure.
The children are tackling their first taste of Year 6 homework this weekend. Please do not allow them to spend longer than 15 minutes on each subject, so 45 minutes unaided in total. The marking is as important as the completing of it, because this is where you can be involved in their learning and support them. We all know that instant feedback is more effective than waiting 2 or 3 days. They will have told you that we completed and marked the GPAS homework together in class, so that they understood the whole homework learning cycle.
They also have their first set of 10 words to learn for a spelling test on Monday 9th September.
Visit to the Houses of Parliament 20th May 2019
Earlier in the year, the whole school took part in Parliament week and we booked this trip then to build on the children's understanding of democracy and government.
Everything about this day ran smoothly: we were under way by 6.22am; there was no traffic, no-one felt travel sick; behaviour was superb; we managed to arrive early enough to look at the statues in Parliament Square and play in Tower Hill Gardens before going into the Parliamentary Education Centre. These photos just give a snapshot of the day and you can read the children's recounts and opinions in their English books! Here are some extracts of the really excellent writing completed upon their return, which describe the order of our tour and activities.
"On Monday 20th May, Year 6 went to the Houses of Parliament for around 6am, as a great treat. It was a 4 hour coach ride, which is not really too long for me. Once we were almost there, in the central London, there were some really cool super cars, which I loved". (Blaze)
"It was a swift coach journey to London - with a stop on the way at Fleet Services - until we reached Parliament Square. It was absolutely filled with statues of famous people like Winston Churchil,l, Lloyd George, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi and even Millicent Fawcett (who fought for equal rights and was an outstanding suffragette.) Our amazing head teacher - Mr Carter - took some lovely photos of us, then we had a short 5 minute walk to Tower Hill Gardens and had a relaxed play on the grass and a snack". (Grace)
"Before we passed through to the Education Centre, we sat outside and had a snack. I nearly ate all my lunch by accident. After that, we went to look upon the sparkling River Thames. I was too short to look at it but I got a step, so did everyone else. Then we went through the doors of the Education Centre and we were given visitor badges and we went through a metal detector, so they knew we didn't have a bomb or any type of weapons." (Dom)
"We strolled into the Sovereign's Entrance, only to be amazed by all of the vibrant colours, such as red, green and gold! Red represents the Lords, green represents the Commons and gold represents the Monarch. A copy of the Magna Carta was also there." (Vincent)
"The Robing Room is where the Monarch puts his/her robes and crown on. As the Monarch approaches the staircase, there are cameras watching her, but not when she is getting changed. There is a copy of the Magna Carta in the Robing Room, Also, there are loads and loads of gold decorations and all of them are made by hand". (Stella)
"The next room we went into was the Gallery, where they had a painting of King John, when he sent his army fight another army. He only made laws for himself, then he signed the Magna Carta and he lost some of his power to make laws." (Harvey)
"The House of Lords is made up of experts in different subjects and professions. This is because if they need to have a debate about education and schools they have expert teachers and headteachers, who know what effects it will have on the students." (Shelby)
"In the House of Commons all the seats were green . In both rooms, there was a public and a press gallery; one for the public and one for reporters and people who work for The Times and things like that. In this room, there was not a throne for the Monarch. They were very different in their jobs. Anybody who is an MP, Member of Parliament, can be in the House of Commons." (I)
"The Westminster Hall was being renovated at the time we were there. The hall in Harry Potter was based on Westminster Hall, because it was so big. Also, it is 900 years old. King Henry VIII played tennis and put guts in tennis balls!" (Seb)
"After a long day in Parliament, we went to St James' Park for a little bit before getting on the coach. While we were there, we saw black swans, grey herons, coots, teal ducks and baby ducks. The mum duck was feeding the baby duck and it was adorable. We then walked back to the coach and hopped on. It was amazing, because I slept for about an hour. Altogether it was an amazing experience and I recommend it. I really enjoyed visiting it". (Shaye)
Arts Week May 2019
During Arts Week this year, we concentrated on Sculpture/DT and 3D work; all the things that take too long to fit into a weekly art lesson. By the end of the week we had created Modroc Picasso owls, cardboard and wire bird sculptures, origami peacocks and newsprint effect birds.
Firstly the children had to create an owl shape out of chicken wire, by bending and folding it, and stiffen it with newspaper packing to retain the shape. Then they put paper tape all over and Mrs Newlin attached the wires to create the feet. The children then had to apply Modroc plaster bandages and shape the wires into feet to support the bird. Once dry, paint with black paint to create features. Not all of the owls were ready for the Art Gallery, so look out for more pictures coming up!
Fantasy Bird Sculptures
The children were given the challenge of creating a free-standing bird sculpture, using cardboard and wire, with as many feathers and decoration as they wished. This was really fun, although the hardest part for all of the children was cutting the wire with wire cutters. We all learned some valuable lessons about safety goggles and how to use wire cutters correctly.
Origami peacocks and swans!
Newsprint bird pictures and Matisse-inspired paintings
Post-SATs fun day Friday 17th May
To celebrate the hard work of the children in Year 6, and how proud we are of them, each year we celebrate the end of this week by having a fun day. This year we will be starting the morning with some baking (blueberry muffins and cheesecake!) and some art, and then after break we will head out to the field for some den-making. During the afternoon there will be PE with Mr Marklew and the day will end with our usual celebration assembly.
If you have any tarpaulins, old blankets, ropes or bungee cords please send them in to school with your child.
Trip to the Houses of Parliament Monday 20th May
We are incredibly excited about our trip to the Houses of Parliament on Monday 20th May. This was booked months ago, shortly before we took part in Parliament Week at school. During the visit, we will be having tours of the Houses of Parliament, learning about the journey to democracy and meeting with our local MP in his offices. The only downside is that early start in the morning, which is necessary to beat the traffic to get to Westminster for our tour.
Maths Matters Day 13th March 2019
Today was our annual Maths Matters day at The Blandford School where all the Year 6s from the feeder schools come together to share maths activities, learn some exciting ways of doing maths, and experience using the school canteen.
World Book Day
On World Book Day, as well as dressing up as book characters, decorating potatoes as book characters, having a book quiz and doing normal lessons (!), the children had the opportunity to make digital book reviews. We also had a parent in to help with our "Share a Story" theme.
Below you can see a review of Cogheart, the book we have just finished as a class read.
Enterprise Market Place Friday 15th February
All the goods that Year 6 had made and marketed so well sold quickly - especially the tins (thanks to some clever marketing as football team colours or unicorn tins!) and some stunning bookmarks were made, with help from Mrs Moscrop and Mrs Wirtzfeld during the afternoons.
All in all, an enjoyable and creative week!
Enterprise week 11th-15th February 2019
During Enterprise Week, as well as designing, producing and marketing their goods for the Enterprise Market Place on Friday afternoon, the children have had the chance to listen to 2 different visitors, talking about their jobs and their career path.
Our first visitor on Wednesday, was Mr Regler, who runs a courier company. The children were fascinated by the technology tracking system, that enabled Mr Regler to monitor where his vans were, their speed, and how long the journeys were taking.
As Seb wrote, "Mr Regler owns a company that delivers stuff everywhere. He once delivered parts of a dead monkey to a lab. He can track his drivers' speed and he can see where they are. He has been to San Diego 5 times and sometimes gets calls at midnight. He has been to both Ghana and Scotland delivering goods. Also, he has been working at Astral for 24 years."
On Thursday our visitor was an Optometrist, called VJ. VJ works in Dorchester Hospital for the NHS and was inspiring to the children, as she showed them pictures of her work. The children learnt about squints, eye patches, how to treat droopy eyes and wobbly eyes. VJ stressed that she loves working with both babies and adults and every day is different: she has to be a detective to work out what is wrong. At the end of her talk, the children were fascinated to go on the NHS job website, and see which jobs their quiz questions matched them up with.
The Lost Words 7-11th January 2019
We started the term with a unit of poetry and art, based upon the beautiful book The Lost Words. This book was written to highlight the disappearing words from children's vocabulary: words such as bramble, wren, kingfisher, fern, acorn. The book is a mixture of poems and illustrations and there has been a crowdfunding campaign to put a copy of this book in every primary school in the UK.
The poems are crammed full of word imagery and vocabulary, some of which you can see has been used in the poems interspersed with the artwork below.
Carol Singing at Castleman House
This morning, most of Year 6 and some children from Year 5 went to Castleman House to entertain the residents with carols. This is the 3rd year in a row that we have been to Castleman House and we are happy to have this community link. The residents there love seeing our children, as many of them miss their own grandchildren, and always give us a warm welcome and generous applause.
This week we have been printing designs for 2019 calendars. This has involved designed prints in polystyrene tiles and testing them out in our art books, until the children were confident with handling the right amount of ink to let the design show.
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.