Welcome to Year 4
with Mrs King
with Mrs Evans
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As of October 2021, we began using 'Cornerstones' curriculum throughout the school so that we can ensure a solid progression of skills and knowledge acquisition in the foundation subjects, and particularly Science and English.
What is the Cornerstones Curriculum?
The Cornerstones Curriculum is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the 2014 primary national curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. It is based on a child-centred pedagogy called The Four Cornerstones and is delivered through Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs) and Knowledge Rich Projects (KRPs), which provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of children’s learning. We believe children learn better when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our curriculum provides many learning challenges throughout the academic year that require children to solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively. Cornerstones also provide a rigorous skills and knowledge framework that outlines the end of year expectations in all subjects. These skills and knowledge are tied to activities and are age-related .
Whole School Curriculum Overview
Contacting the Year 4 Team
Although we may not be able to meet face to face currently, we are more than happy to receive emails on the above links. Please bear in mind that we may not be able to respond until the following day.
At times, you may prefer to arrange to speak to us over the phone. You can do this via email, again using the addresses above, or by calling the school office on 01305 783876 and leaving a message.
The School Day
To ensure safety of families, pupils and staff, the school drop off and pick up times have altered from last year. Children can enter from 8:30 to be settled for registration at 8:40am, after which teaching will begin.
Leaving times have changed slightly so that students with surnames beginning with N - Z will leave school at 3.05pm. The remaining students will leave at 3:10pm.
Traditionally, spellings have been tested weekly, using Statutory Word lists, prefixes and suffixes learned in class. However, we have noticed that the pandemic has negatively impacted our students’ retention and produced gaps in their learning.
Although Spelling Shed is an important part of helping our learners to improve their vocabulary, it is not necessarily useful to all our learners. Some students may like to continue to rise to the challenge by using the app, but others may need a differentiated approach.
As reflective practitioners, in Year 4, we know that some of our students will benefit by revisiting our Phonics programme, Read Write Inc. We will be working on specific phonemes, prefixes and suffixes as we move through the year.
We have already started identifying any gaps and aim to deliver a more personalised programme to improve your child’s progress. This means that students can be at different stages in their spellings, reading and handwriting. Each half term, we will be able to re-assess your child, and adjust our support accordingly.
Spelling lists will be sent home in children's Blue Spelling Book, with a view to learning the vocabulary to be tested on the Friday of the following week.
We encourage all students to read widely with a grown-up at home, discussing the content of books they read so your child becomes fluent in vocabulary, grammar, inference and comprehension skills, maximising their experience and enjoyment of reading.
Children should bring in their book bags every day, along with their Reading Record. New books will be issued on Mondays, so students can read with their adults at home and at school over the week. To enhance the experience, Year 4 children are also encouraged to use Oxford Reading Buddy regularly at home, as they do in school.
Oxford Reading Buddy moves students automatically through Oxford Levels. Once a student has met specified thresholds, based on the number of quiz scores above 80%, they are ready to move up to the next Oxford Level. Threshold numbers vary between levels, and numbers reduce at higher levels because the texts are longer and take more time to read.
The conditions for movement through Oxford Levels have been based on expected rates of progress and achievement. In the event that a student runs out of books at a given Oxford Level without having met the thresholds necessary to move up to the next Oxford Level, previously-read books will appear at the start of their eBook library ready for re-reading, and quizzes will be reset for a second attempt.
We are coaching students regularly on how to improve their book Quiz results in the classroom. As there is no time limit and no sense of competition in the quizzes, we are focussing on taking the time to read the questions and search the text before committing to the answer, just as students will need to in a Reading Comprehension Test. Consistently scoring 80% or more will maximise their progression to the next level, where many more e-books will be available.
Year 4 students are expected to know their times tables up to 12 x 12 by June 2023, when they will take part in the Multiplication Tables Check. This is a series of 25 questions with 6 seconds to answer and with a 3 second gap between questions. It is hard, requires maximum concentration and the multiplication facts really do need to be known ‘off by heart’ in order to pass. To this end, we encourage all students to practise these at home and school, as well as participate in TT Rockstars.
There are links below to some sites that may support additional learning at home.
Children should wear full school uniform to and from school with black outdoor school shoes, which should be suitable for field play and wet weather. A warm, waterproof or water-resistant coat should be provided in wet and cold weather. When the playing field is muddy, students are encouraged to wear their PE shoes in the classroom, rather than their muddy shoes, when returning from outside breaks.
Our PE lessons will take place on Tuesday afternoon. Students are asked to wear their kit to school that day. Since we will also be continuing our swimming lessons from 13th Setptember 2022, students that are swimming on Wednesday and Thursday should wear PE kit for the day. This will greatly reduce changing times, maximising your child's time in the pool.