Lions Year 6
Kingsdown and Ringwould Church of England Primary School
WELCOME TO THE LIONS’ CLASS
Please share the reading and understanding of this letter with your child – thank you.
Welcome to the start of a new academic year at Kingsdown and Ringwould CEP School. The team and I are looking forward to teaching and nurturing your children in their final year at school, encouraging them to develop and apply their thinking skills further, and preparing them both academically and socially for secondary school. They have a busy year ahead of them; I expect them to work hard and I know they’ll be great role models for the younger children in the school. They will be given various responsibilities in the school community to help them grow in confidence and become more organised, independent, responsible and reliable.
The year begins with many children sitting the selection tests for entry to secondary school, but soon a timetable will begin for work in the different curriculum areas. The Year 6 Teaching Team comprises Mrs Chapman, Mrs Calder and Mrs MacKellar. Mrs Chapman is the Class Lead Teacher and will lead Y6 English, Maths, RE, Computing, Art, DT, History, Geography, Languages, PSHE and PE lessons. Mrs MacKellar will lead Y6 Science and Music lessons, as well as support English and Maths and some other subjects. Mrs Calder will support all lessons.
English: Pupils will study spelling, punctuation and grammar, and must showcase these English skills in all writing in all subjects across the curriculum, as well as in a variety of genres in English. These may include newspaper reports, recounts, letters, instructions, poetry, diary entries and narrative compositions. Spellings will be tested by means of dictation, which also serves to hone children’s handwriting, grammar and punctuation skills as a useful by-product. Neatly joined handwriting will be learnt or re-learnt, and expected in all writing across all Year 6 subjects. Children’s reading comprehension skills will be developed further. The novel ‘Holes’, by Louis Sachar, will be used as a quality text to inspire interpretation and writing – read ahead for enjoyment! Reading is equally as important as it always has been, but more than ever before, the question ‘Can you read?’ no longer means ‘Can you figure out what each word says?’, but rather: ‘Did you understand what you just read?’
Maths: The children will work through the National Curriculum for Mathematics, which expects children to become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, enabling them to recall and apply their knowledge rapidly and accurately. They will learn to reason mathematically and solve problems of increasing complexity. The programme of study is divided into Number (including Place Value – know your columns!), Arithmetic (the four operations of +, -, x and ÷, and their methods – ‘algorithms’), Fractions, Ratio and Proportion, Algebra, Measurement, Geometry and Statistics. Children should ensure that they always brush up on their times tables routinely outside of school, such that they can quickly recall random facts (eg. 7 x 8 = 56 – my favourite!), inverse facts (eg. 42 ÷ 7 = 6) and derived facts (eg. 20 x 70 = 1400).
Science: Throughout terms 1 and 2, two programmes of study will be taught: Animals including humans. The children will study the human circulatory system and learn about the functions of the heart, blood vessels and blood. They will also recognise the impact of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle on the way their bodies function. Electricity. The children will learn how to draw and recognise conventional symbols and circuit diagrams. They will also construct circuits that include switches and resistance. Keeping safe around electricity will also be discussed.
Humanities: History: The children will study the civilisation of Ancient Egypt, including how to write using hieroglyphics and how to make a mummy! (Do visit the mummified cat at The Beaney in Canterbury if you’re over that way! It’s in the same building as Canterbury’s library. Alternatively, google search ‘beaney mummified cat’ and it’s the first result that comes up.) Geography: The first Geography topic will be Rivers and will include a cut-throat game of Pooh Sticks at the River Stour. Cross-curricular English work will involve some reading of Carnegie Medal winning novel ‘River Boy’ by Tim Bowler – read ahead if you like!
Computing: In readiness for KS3, pupils will use some Computing lessons to research topics, learning how to ‘safe search’ and to use their research without plagiarising, as well as secure their fundamental and advanced MSOffice skills. They will learn how to create a bibliography of website links and to be discerning with their choices. As we continue to nurture children’s wellbeing, their e-safety needs continue to underpin all computing in school.
RE: During term 1, pupils will comparing and considering Science vs. Religion through the study of the Creation. Then in term 2, through the study of the gospel, children will debate how the gospel can be used. Children will also visit Canterbury Cathedral for a variety of activities and to be able to use their knowledge from the trip to write an RE/English cross-curricular recount.
Languages: Children will use French (and sometimes German) as part of normal class room life. They children will learn French vocabulary, grammar and phrasing to be able to think and converse freely.
Art; DT; Music: Children will create images to the theme of People in Motion, thinking about Egyptians and sportspeople. They will also travel on illustration adventures to show what enters their minds, whilst listening to stories being read. Children’s cross-curricular learning will see them use design technology skills in Science when they make electrical circuits. They will also link DT to their History and Geography topics to make mummies, shadufs and rivers, among other projects. In Music, children will explore singing in rounds and investigate sound sources.
PE: The children will be doing dance and team games. Please ensure that both indoor and outdoor PE kit is always in school, as although PE slots are scheduled for Mondays and Fridays, they are always liable to change due to circumstances around school. The children are to take part in the lessons and will only be excused from the activities either if they bring a little note from a parent or carer to me explaining the reason (on paper or in the pupil’s planner), or if a parent has explained to the office staff, who will pass on a message to me. Children will still do PE even if they have no kit, provided I can ensure their safety.
Planner: As in Year 5, pupils in Year 6 have been given a planner in which they can write down key dates, homework, targets, tasks to do, notes and a record of their reading. Pupils should bring their planners and reading books to school daily and take them home at the end of each day. Please date and initial in the boxes at the start of each weekly double-page if you or another adult has listened to your child read; please do not initial if your child has read to him or herself. The planners will be treated similarly to those the children will use in Year 7 at their next schools, to prepare them somewhat. We will collect the planners in once a week, usually a Monday, and sign off the relevant page for the preceding week. The planners can also be used as a method of communication between home and school: if you have anything you wish to tell any of the Year 6 Teaching Team on any day, please write it in the planner and ask your child to show us; similarly, we may write notes to parents in the planner for your child to show you. The children are expected to keep their planners tidy. If a child loses his or her planner, he or she can purchase a replacement from school at the cost of £5. Whilst pupils’ planners are in our care, they will be kept closed, but in full view of pupils.
Homework: There will be weekly homework for children to practise skills, research topics and to revise and consolidate knowledge. The tasks will help them prepare for secondary school by nurturing their self-study skills, diligence, and the value and pride in doing something well for oneself. Homework will be given out on a Friday and it is expected to be handed in on the very next Monday morning. Weekly English tasks are always: spelling patterns to learn for weekly tests in the form of dictations; reading to an adult outside of school for enjoyment (and/or discussion about the text). Other homework tasks given might be English, Maths, Science or other curriculum subjects. Any written homework given should take up to and no more than two and a half hours per week altogether, in line with government recommendations (NB. This timing does not include the learning of spellings and reading for enjoyment.)
Other: Children should have a bottle of water with them in school daily and may bring a piece of fruit or raw vegetable to school to eat at morning break time.
I hope that you will find this information useful. If you have any further questions please catch me outside school at the end of the day, or arrange with the office staff to come and discuss them with me at a mutually convenient time.
Thank you and kind regards,
(Year 6 Class Teacher)