Our Year 4 Classes are Whales and Dolphins.
Our Year 4 Classes are Whales and Dolphins.
The Summer Term is well under way and, with it, has come consistently decent weather over the last few weeks. Every day since we came back to school, we have been taking part in our ‘Daily Mile’ exercise. Rather than doing a mile each day, this term we are alternating our route and fitness push on different days to develop our stamina. On one day we might complete the full mile but on the next day we might complete one lap of the field and top yard. On these short routes, the expectation is that we push ourselves as much as we can and aim to complete the lap in a faster time than the last time we did it. This, in turn, is having a huge impact on the longer mile days, where, as a year group, we have all been really proud of much effort everyone is putting in to do the mile.
If you have found a real passion for running, like many children in our year group have, don’t forget to get in touch with Blyth Running Club to take this a step further. Several children in the year group are already signed up and have since taken part in athletics festivals, training evenings and have challenges in mind for the future that we know they will achieve. Find out more here: Blyth Running Club or on their Facebook page.
We had an incredible day on Tuesday, celebrating the Vikings and getting involved in a variety of activities to help us learn more about these invaders from Scandinavia.
During the morning, we found out about the key events that took place in Britain during the Viking invasion and settlement. We watched historical video clips, read fact files and information sheets and even acted as Viking archaeologists, studying artefacts and having discussions about what we thought they might be used by while justifying our opinions. We then used this information to produced a section on a physical timeline in the classroom. These sections included: Lindisfarne, Ripton, York, the Danelaw and Alfred the Great.
We also studied Viking runes and decoded some messages that were found in caves that had been left behind by Viking settlers at the time. We are going to use these Runes to decorate the sails of the Viking Longboats that we are busy making. Have a go yourself at home:
Throughout the day, we were lucky enough to be able to go outside and work in small group to start to make our sails. We used running stitch to create a boarder for our design and next week we are going to add on a Viking rune that either represents a letter that is significant to us or means something that we find interesting.
After handwriting and guided reading in the afternoon, we then started designing and making our own Viking longboats. We created a paper template, cut it out and then drew around it on pieces of cardboard. After we had made two identical sides, we stapled them together and attached a new piece of card to the centre for the mast. Next week, we will be making our shields, painting our ships and adding our finished sail.
Well done to everyone who made the effort to get dressed up, you all looked great. Odin and Frigg would be proud!
Year 4 had an incredible time at the recently opened, £2.5 million STEM centre in Ashington. We took part in four exciting activities that encouraged problem solving, creative thinking and developed our understanding of STEM as a whole.
One of the STEM tasks we took part in was linked to forensics. We found out that forensic facts are anything that can be used by a judge to determine whether someone is guilty or not of having committed a crime. One particular aspect of forensics that we studied today was our finger prints. Every person’s finger print is completely unique to them (unless you have an identical twin) and each one of your ten fingers has its own individual print. We used magnetic ink to scan for a finger print, which was fascinating, and then used a plastic sheet to take a copy of it. Using finger print inks, we then took a sample of our classmates’ finger prints and compared it to the print that was taken. There are definitely some future forensic scientists and detectives in our year group!
Another exciting opportunity we had, was to learn about Chromatography in relation to Skittles sweets. We placed a combination of skittle sweets around the edge of a Petri dish and then added water. As the out layer of each sweet dissolved into the water, the effect this was made was amazing. After we learned what was happening scientifically during this process, we were treated to something really special. We saw a chemical reaction between two different materials occur that was truly explosive!
We were introduced to some innovative new technologies while spending time with Gordon in his lab. He is working with 3D printers, Computer Assisted Design machines and a device that is able to cut and carve any design that is inputted into a computer. When we were given a chance to ask questions, Gordon was really impressed with what we had to say. One of us asked if it would be possible to 3D print food, thinking that it was a strange thing to ask, however Gordon told us that it was completely possible and that he thinks that in 20 years time we will see vending machines that will do this! Gordon clearly explained to us how being an engineer was all about coming up with solutions to problems and he shard a prosthetic hand that he and his team had made, for the tiny cost of £5, that will be used to make the lives of children in Africa with missing limbs better. To know that we will be able to work with these technologies in the future if we want to at places like Northumberland College was really exciting to us.
One of the things that we all loved taking part in was our ‘Engineering in a Box’ challenge. We were split into four teams, given a load of different resources and eight challenges that we had to complete within 20 minutes. All of the members of staff we really impressed by how we were able to quickly organise ourselves, share the workload and come up with interesting ways to solve the problems we had. We know that to be an engineer you must be able to come up with more than one way to look at the problem put in front of us and it was great to find out that for each challenge, every team had come up with a different way to solve it.
We loved our day of celebrations linked to Easter in Year 4 this week. We took part in a load of activities both inside and outside the classroom. We wanted to share some photographs from the day to give you all a feel for what we got up to.
In class, we created our own egg baskets using templates, used problem solving skills to become code breakers, used our multiplication knowledge to colour code Easter images, we drew Easter landscapes, answered quiz questions and so much more.
Outside of the class, we got Easter tattoos, took part in an egg hunt, made crispy cakes with mini eggs, created our own egg design and more. It was a really fun filled day.
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