British Science Week in Year 4

Year 4 had a great time in British Science Week learning about different types of “Journeys”.

As part of our week, we all had the chance to create a tasty lasagne made from ingredients we could by in shops in Dereham…but where did these foods come from? We carried out our own research and were really surprised to find out how far some of the things we eat might have travelled. For example, Chloe found out that most olive oil comes from Greece (1927 miles to the UK), Autumn was surprised to find that most of the world’s peppers are grown in China (5,551 miles to the UK) and Daisy was amazed to learn that some of our tomatoes travel 2244 miles by sea from Jamaica to reach our shops!

During the week, we also thought about some of the journeys that plastic objects make after we have finished using them. We were all very concerned about the effect that our waste plastic can have on wildlife all around the world. We researched animal species that live in the Mediterranean Sea and created a display to show what this habitat could look like. We all thought we should try to remember to always recycle plastic if we can.

Everyone in Year 4 really enjoyed British Science Week and learned loads!

Year 4 Anglo-Saxon Day

What an amazing fact filled, fun fuelled day Year 4 have had exploring Anglo Saxons and how some lived so many years ago!

Year 4 immersed themselves in the daily lives of Anglo Saxons.  We learnt all about runes  – the language system they used to record events.  We decoded a message written with runes, created our own message for partners to decipher and used clay to make our own runes.

We were able to create our own pots using one of the three methods the Anglo-Saxons were known to have used – thumb, pinching or coil.  We then shaped the pots into various styles to try and follow the design we had created based on Anglo Saxon pottery uncovered by archaeologists.

To taste Anglo Saxon cooking, we used an authentic Anglo-Saxon recipe for Honey shortbread and worked in pairs to create this delicious dish.  We were able to use our maths skills: Measure and showed how well we could work as part of a pair in the kitchen.  Loved ones have been able to sample the Anglo-Saxon recipe as we took it home for eating at the end of our busy Anglo-Saxon Day.

After lunch, Year Four were engrossed in the tale of Beowulf and then took part in riddle making a favourite Anglo-Saxon pastime.  We were told riddles from Anglo-Saxon times – which were really difficult!  Then we created our own riddles ready for the riddle competition later on in the afternoon.

Having experienced Anglo-Saxons at work and at play, we then took part in Anglo-Saxon dancing.  It was quite tricky and not like modern dancing.  First, we learnt how to complete the dance sequence really slowly, then we added faster Anglo-Saxon music and had a dance off with each other.  It was brilliant and really tiring – the Anglo-Saxons were very energetic and fit!

Finally, we learnt how to play an Anglo-Saxon board game: Nine Men’s Morris.  It was a little like Tic Tac Toe but more complicated.

Year 4 meet the Anglo-Saxons

On Thursday, 7th March, Year 4 enjoyed a fascinating day at Norwich Castle, learning all about the Anglo-Saxons.

As they arrived, the children met a metal detectorist who discovered a brooch in Norfolk that reveals the story of Thurweald, an Anglo Saxon King and his people. As part of the day, the children met different Anglo Saxon characters who revealed the story of Thurweald, who had died. The children enjoyed making replica Anglo-Saxon broches, they met a trader and handled some genuine artefacts, sat with a wonderful story teller to act out the legend of Thurweald’s defeat of the monsters in the forest and even learned how the Anglo-Saxons buried their dead.

One of the children said, “I enjoyed the trip because I actually thought I was an Anglo-Saxon. I learnt how the women had their legs bent when they were buried but the men’s legs were straight.”

Another commented, “I learnt about how the Anglo-Saxons traded things, even to India! It was amazing!”

Winterwatch Comes to Toftwood Federation

On Thursday 31st January, the children of Year 4 enjoyed an amazing Science opportunity. Along with children from all over the country, they took part in a special online live lesson from BBC TEACH who teamed up with Winterwatch to bring wildlife into our school.  With lots of cross curricular learning, the interactive lesson examined the mountainous and snowy habitat of Cairngorms National Park. The children came face to face with incredible animals, learnt how to classify animals based on their common features and explored how animals adapt as their environment changes. They were able to apply their Geography learning to describe the wilderness and also spotted the presenters using the adventurous vocabulary we have been studying in our reading sessions. The children particularly enjoyed observing the astounding wing span of a Golden Eagle and the soft, downy coat of the Artic Hare.

Year 4 Roman Day – Autumn 1 2018

The children in Year 4 had a very special visitor on Wednesday 26th September. To link in with their history topic, pupils were immersed in all things Roman.

Starting the day, the children learnt about key historical figures, significant places, weapons and battle techniques and important dates relating to Roman Britain. After splitting into the three classes, each group participated in themed activities. These included playing a Roman board game called ‘Delta’ which involved sliding counters and scoring points using Roman numerals; learning about and handling real Roman artefacts; and finding out lots of facts as part of a Roman quiz.

In the afternoon, we experienced the thrills and excitement of the Colosseum.  This included the procession of the powerful Emperor and his loyal wife into the arena followed by their guards, slaves and a band of musicians playing their instruments and wailing to ward off ghosts and evil spirits. The children enjoyed learning about how gladiators fought, and especially about some of the very strange helmets they wore for their contests. We ended the day by watching our very own gladiators battle each other, showing off their skill and daring before the Emperor decided who would live or die. The children thoroughly enjoyed these experiences and meeting Vulpus. Their excellent learning behaviours during the day were a real credit to them.

Year 4 Summer 2 2018 – Easton Farm Visit

Year 4 Trip to Easton College

As part of our Geography learning, the children had an exciting trip to Easton College. First up, was a guided walk around the college farm, taking in information about how the land is used. The children were surprised to discover that they grow lots of different crops- some used to feed people and some for animals. They could even spot the difference between spring and winter barley. Using their geographical skills, the children completed a map of the site using their own symbols. In the afternoon, they examined and investigated different types of seeds and discussed different ways to sort them. They also looked at a range of farm machinery and used their observational skills to identify the purpose of each piece of equipment.

The college staff remarked on how well the children behaved and how interested they were in everything they saw. The Year 4 team wanted to say a big thankyou to our parent volunteers and members of staff who accompanied us on the trip as without their help the trip wouldn’t have happened.

“I enjoyed our trip since I learnt about the parts of a combine harvester and about the crops that are on the farm like barley and sugar beet.” – Adam

“I learnt that barley could be different sizes depending on when it is planted.” – Ella

“Overall, the day was amazing and I learnt about the structure of a combine harvester and how it works.” – Ffion

“The information and facts they told us were super accurate!” – Ryan

Year 4 Trip to Norwich Cathedral

As part of the RE curriculum, Year 4 visited Norwich Cathedral to learn more about the building itself and the Christian festival of Pentecost. The children had a guided historical tour around the cathedral, taking in the stained glass windows and spent time exploring and identifying different types of bird hidden all around the monument. Also, they learnt about the significance and the changing colours of the Christian calendar. As well as this, the children really enjoyed finding out about the Peregrine Falcons currently roosting on the spire of the cathedral. They had the opportunity to observe their nest through a telescope and compare their arm span to that of a range of birds of prey. Everyone had a fantastic day and the children were a credit to themselves and their school.

“I was impressed that the cathedral was built over 900 years ago and it’s still there.”

“I liked the stained glass windows, as they shone brightly in the darkness.”

“I learnt that celebrations for Christians have different colours.”

“I learnt that a bishop’s hat is a symbol of the flames of Pentecost.”

Year 4’s Great Bake-Off!

Autumn 2 2017

Our Design and Technology work for this half term ended up being absolutely delicious! The task was to design and build an attractive and effective cake stand to display the winter themed cupcakes that they were going to bake – the children thought it was “quite tricky to do but really fun”.

Throughout the project, the children needed to use lots and lots of different skills. They began by thinking about the features a cake stand needed and decided that it had to be stable, flat and strong enough to hold their cakes. After that, the building process required very accurate measuring and cutting as well as some re-thinking when things didn’t go quite right.

During the building stage, the children found out why lamination is useful and decided how different parts of a structure can be held together e.g. by using flaps and slots.

To complete their projects, the children worked together in groups to create their batches of delicious spiced apple cupcakes. One big part of the task was to effectively work in their group, they needed to carefully follow the instructions and decide who would do the different parts of the task so they were able to get everything finished in the time they had.

At the end of their project, the children were really proud of what they had achieved, completing their strong and stable stands ready to show off their scrumptious cakes.

We hope you enjoyed their efforts too.

A Visit from Vulpus!

On 16th October, Year 4 at Toftwood Junior School were thrilled to have a visit from a “real life gladiator”!

This “living history” experience was part of the children’s learning about the Roman Invasion of Britain and the children thoroughly enjoyed dressing up to become ‘real’ Romans for the day.

This thrilling day included topics such as: a close up look at the equipment used by Roman soldiers; the blood-thirsty story of the revolt of our local Iceni tribe lead by Queen Boudicca; what Romans did in the bathroom and even involved a ‘trip’ to the amphitheatre to see gladiators fight to the death (the children even learned how to appeal to the Emperor to either kill or spare the life of the defeated fighter).

The children thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learned so much from the day; here are just a few of their thoughts:

“I enjoyed today because we got to learn in a more fun way by acting out everything.” Phoebe

“It was interesting because I got to learn more about the Romans and we played games and held pieces of brick and things Romans had in their hands 2000 years ago!” Max

“The day was great because I enjoyed holding the Roman things like a brooch and a real mosaic and I got to learn more about the Britons and how they fought against the Romans.” Adam

“Today was so fun because we got to hold real Roman equipment and art. Also, we got to be entertained by seeing Roman fighting.” Martina

“It was an educational day because we learnt lots of things we didn’t know before!” Dani

“I liked today because I got to handle real Roman things. I liked the story because it told us about how the Romans fought.” Kobe

“It was awesome, I got to act as the Roman queen! Also, we could touch all the artefacts like a broach and bits of a mortariolum (a mortar used in a Roman kitchen).” Natalie

“I had a really, really good day because we got to dress up as a Roman and we learned A LOT!” Josie

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