Please be aware that all children are expected to have their PE kit in school every Monday ready for the week ahead - we will be checking this so please support your child by helping them organise themselves.
Please see our Spring Term Curriculum Newsletter for details on what we will be learning until Easter.
September 2018: Creating our Solar System
In our first few days of this term we all worked on creating a 3D solar system. We each had a planet to decorate using our knowledge of the appearance of the planets. Saturn was quite challenging to make due to its rings so we worked on this planet in pairs. The finished planets look great and we now have 3 solar systems displayed in the classroom and along the corridor!
September 2018: Roald Dahl Day
In recognition of the amazing talents of Roald Dahl, we joined many other schools nationwide in celebrating Roald Dahl Day on 13th September. Some of us chose to dress up as a Roald Dahl book character - we had James and Aunt Spiker from 'James and the Giant Peach', Charlie from 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', Sophie from 'The BFG' to name but a few! Can you tell who was dressed as which character in the photo below?
Some of us wore something yellow in colour instead of dressing up - this was in recognition of yellow being Roald Dahl's favourite colour.
During our English lesson, we looked at Roald Dahl's 'Revolting Rhymes' in which he puts a comical twist to many well-known fairy stories. We had fun acting them out to the class and performing each entertaining tale!
September 2018: Visit to Winchester Science Centre
To kick-start our Space topic, Y5 and Y6 visited the Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium. We took part in a Discover Space workshop where we looked at how light is used in telescopes to explore the Universe beyond our reach. We then had time to explore the new interactive zone called Explorer: Space where some of us even dressed up in an astronaut suit. The highlight of the day was the awesome Planetarium where we took part in a show called Our Solar System and Beyond. Comments heard from the Y6 class were "This is so cool!", "Wow look at all of the stars!" and "This is unbelievable!" In addition to all of that excitement, we also had time to explore the hands-on exhibits, all of which demonstrated Scientific concepts.
September 2018 - Preparing for the commemoration of WW1
November 2018 marks the 100th anniversary of the end of World War 1. As a school, we were fortunate to have a visit from Councillor Gill Birch from Bracknell Forest Council - she gave an assembly to explain how Bracknell Forest will be commemorating this anniversary and also gave us lots of fascinating facts about WW1. Did you know that tissues and tea bags were invented during the Great War? Or that Bracknell was a small village then but lost many of its young men who had gone off to fight? We were also told of some exciting competitions being held for children. Year 6 have entered a Poetry competition after a workshop to help us write War Poetry. We also completed some artwork and had a class vote to decide which pieces of art should be reproduced onto canvases and entered into the competition. These canvases will be displayed in an exhibition at South Hill Park - what an amazing opportunity for our young artists!
October Homework Projects
Year 6 were tasked with creating a Space project of their choosing in the first half term of the school year, to link with our cross-curricular topic in school. The work produced has been phenomenal and all of the children who produced a project have presented their work to the class with confidence and clarity. There were some amazing solar system models with information as well as an amazing satellite, rockets of various shapes and sizes and even a fantastic lunar rover!
Staying Safe Online
On 16th October, Year 6 went to St Michael's Primary School to join the Year 6s there for a very lively and entertaining production all about Internet Safety. Throughout the play, we learned about digital resilience, online bullying, critical thinking, online peer pressure and also privacy settings. The children were all encouraged to question the information which they find online, including the profile details of strangers. They were also asked to think twice when posting comments which might be meant as a joke but which might actually upset or hurt someone. The performance was very informative and gave us much to think about.
Restart a Heart training
Across the UK, there are over 30,000 cardiac arrests outside of hospital every year, but the survival rate is less than 1 in 10. 16th October is National Restart a Heart Day every year and this year, Year 6 were very fortunate to receive some training from several Paramedics and people from the Fire Service. We were shown how to carry out CPR on the mannequins so that we can all now act to restart a heart. Hopefully, we will never need to use this skill, but if we do, we could make a big difference to someone's survival.
Aiyana presented a fantastic assembly to the whole school all about Diwali which she celebrated with her family on 7th November. She told us all about the story of Rama and Sita; showed us clothes that she and her brother wear for the celebration; shared a photograph of some of the food she ate and also enthused about the fireworks she had watched! She spoke confidently, answered questions from the audience and also involved other children by questioning them about their celebrations. Great job Aiyana!
Congratulations from the Mayor of Bracknell
On 13th November, the Mayor came into the school assembly to award certificates to Year 6 for their World War 1 poetry completed earlier this term. Summer and Zuzanna also received special commendation certificates for their work. All children were complimented on the standard of their work.
As part of our Space topic this term, we have been finding out about the composer Gustav Holst and his famous piece of music, The Planet Suite. One of the compositions within the whole suite is named Uranus and in this piece of music, Holst used a motif which is a repeating pattern of notes, played by many different instruments throughout. Using this idea, Year 6 created their own motifs using the glockenspiels and xylophones. Some of the pairs even managed to compose a piece of music for their motif to repeat throughout.
Miller's Farm Visit
A big thank you to the PTA for funding and arranging a visit to school from Miller's Farm. Our playground temporarily was a home to sheep, goats, donkeys, pigs, chickens, geese and rabbits! The children were allowed to join their animals in their pens if they wished to do so and so had a real hands-on experience with the animals.
It's Panto Time!
On December 4th, the whole school went to South Hill Park to watch the pantomime of Dick Whittington. It was a very entertaining performance enjoyed by all - and our very own Mrs Ball had a starring roll! A big thank you to Mrs Coxell for providing us all with snacks and drinks in the interval too.
On two very cold and wet, murky days in December, 9 members of Year 6 took part in Bikeability training. This is similar to the old cycling proficiency and is designed to ensure our children are able to ride safely and responsibly on the roads. The trainers were very complimentary towards the children involved and were impressed with their behaviour and attitudes. All 9 children completed both the level 1 and level 2 course successfully - a big WELL DONE to all of them!
Since September, every two weeks, the ladies from St Michael's Church have been coming into Fox Hill on a Wednesday morning to perform a Bible story with the whole school. Children are often needed to help with the performance and Year 6 are in the privileged position of often being asked to provide these additional actors. The photos below show a performance of Daniel and the lions which taught us all about making good decisions and not being easily led by other people who may not have our best interests at heart.
Maths, Art and DT all in one lesson!
As we come towards the end of our topic on Space, we have put our Maths skills to the test in creating a scaled model of the solar system. We all started off with a lump of clay which had to be split into tenths to start with. We then followed instructions on how many tenths needed to be amalgamated to create each of the gas giants and the remaining clay was then put together and split into tenths again. Each of these tenths were either added to the gas giants, used to make smaller planets - or split into yet more fractions to create the tiny Mercury! Once the clay had dried, we then used paint to ensure the planets were coloured appropriately, adding detail to them and rings around Saturn. Lastly, the planets needed a 'galaxy' to be displayed on which was created using various materials.
The Spring term kicked off with an Athletics competition held at Bracknell Leisure Centre. Fox Hill was represented by some Year 5 children (Gladys, Mikey, Akhil) and several Year 6 children: Lucas, Dale, Ebony, Sophie A, Alfie E, Kelsie. Although we didn't qualify for the finals, all of the children performed brilliantly and were fantastic representatives of the school. Thank you to Mrs Collins and Mr McBride for making this possible.
On January 22nd, 4 members of Year 6 went to Eagle House School to participate in a Maths Challenge. Scarlett and Aiyana formed one team while Advait and Ananth formed the other. They were competing against over 80 teams from other schools (both private and state schools) and had to perform maths calculations under pressure in several different rounds - countdown, algebra and word problems. We are immensely proud of the children for holding their nerve is such a pressurised atmosphere - especially as they scored so highly! The girls were positioned 20th and the boys 44th - fantastic! Thanks again to Mrs Collins for taking the children and for helping the afternoon run so smoothly.
New Age Kurling
On 23rd January, Frazier and Jack (from Year 5) and Jamie F and Konrad (from Year 6) took part in an inter-schools New Age Kurling competition. This was a totally new sport for all participants and an exciting opportunity to be part of. All 4 children represented the school brilliantly and were placed an admirable 5th overall.
Beowulf New Reports
As part of our learning about the Vikings, we have been studying the story of Beowulf in English lessons. After spending some time looking at and discussing the story, we created news reports as if we were reporting on the death of the famous warrior.
Every morning, Year 6 practise their times tables on Times Tables Rock Stars. There has been a noticeable improvement in the speed of recall of times tables facts by some of the children, especially those who arrive at school promptly and get onto the ipads quickly. The class regularly challenge each other and are becoming very competitive!
From Monday 25th February, Fox Hill had a school-wide Healthy Week which included the whole school doing the daily mile and lots of other different activities. The week was kicked-off by Mrs Smith in Monday's assembly when we all got moving and thought about what we put into our bodies. Less than half of the school thought that they ate 5 pieces of fruit or vegetables each day and some children did not seem to realise how bad it is that nationally, children eat 3 times more sugar than the recommended amount each day on average. Year 6 spent some time investigating the amount of sugar in everyday foods and the most startling findings were that there is 350g sugar in 1 kg of crunchy nut cornflakes - that's over a third of the box!! And that tomato ketchup has more sugar per 100g than a can of Coke.
After learning about the sugar content of some foods, we then spent some time thinking about easy exercises and in particular, skipping! Some of us really struggled to skip with a rope but some of us could do various skipping tricks! We all enjoyed using the long rope to skip in small groups and challenged each other to see who could run-in and jump the most. It was quite exhausting!!
Butser Ancient Farm
As part of our Topic learning about the Vikings, we visited Butser Ancient Farm in March. We were lucky that it didn't rain as we were outside all day - much like the Vikings would have been! After some time in a longhouse learning about how it had been built using traditional methods, we then had a series of workshops trying our hands at various Viking skills.
First we had some sheep's wool to try to spin into wool - this was really tricky and even though we all had a length of wool by the end of the session, we would have barely been able to make a scarf for a mouse with it all! Our second activity was carving - we used a piece of flint and a lump of chalk to practise carving letters or pictures, just like the Vikings may have done. We also learned how to use a dock leaf to 'paint' the rock green which we could then carve into for a more impressive effect.
After some lunch, our last two activities were archaeology and wattling. We were taught how real archaeologists 'dig' gently and carefully - and then had a go at doing so ourselves. We found all sorts of 'treasure'! Lastly, we used long branches of hazel to weave between some posts to make a fence. This was harder than it looked and needed some brute force. The Vikings would have then daubed a mixture of clay, straw and animal poo onto the wattle fences to create the walls of their houses - thankfully we were not required to do that bit!
We were very lucky to have a visit from a team from Google to talk to Key Stage 2 about how we all use the internet. The focus was on using it safely and also protecting ourselves. It was a fun and interactive assembly which hopefully we all learned from.
National Science Week
To mark this national week of recognition, the whole of Fox Hill (from Nursery to Year 6) embarked on 5 days of Science investigations, experiments and tests. Each day started with an assembly which was followed by Scientific activities back in class. Our findings were then reported back to the rest of the school in the following day's assembly. All children embraced this opportunity to develop enquiring minds and to use more scientific vocabulary.
On Monday we all investigated which biscuits are best for dunking! Although there were a few anomalies in our results, most classes agreed that Rich Tea biscuits are the least likely to fall apart in your cup of tea! Year 6 considered the fat and sugar content of the biscuit selection and realised that the less fat and sugar there is, the less likely the biscuit is to fall apart in a liquid.
Easter Experience At St Michael's Church
We were fortunate to be invited to St Michael's Church on 18th March for their Easter Experience. We took part in 6 different mini-workshops which focused on reflection and contemplation using the Easter story as a stimulus. Some of the children thought deeply about the dilemmas and difficulties we face every day and considered how we can help ourselves cope with these.