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Princes Risborough Primary School

An Academy of the Great Learners Trust


Spring Term 2019




Year 3/4 Autumn Term Review


Dear parents and carers,


First of all, I would like to thank all of the children for an amazing term. We have achieved so much in the classroom and beyond with so many really positive learning experiences. I would also like to thank you all for your continued support, be it contributions to WOW days, helping out with trips, resourcing, or encouraging home learning.


This term we have been studying ‘life in the freezer,’ and much of the curriculum has been adapted to help broaden and deepen the children’s learning. In all subjects we have endeavoured to include solid and meaningful links back to our main topic. We hope you will agree that it has been enjoyable and successful.


English: We have studied several texts related to our topic: The Rainbow Bear by Michael Morpurgo, Ice Trap by Meredith Hooper, Shackleton’s Journey by William Grill, and The Polar Bear Son retold by Lydia Dobcovich. The children have written short stories, comics, letters and diaries as expedition members, and even a full size information text about the Shackleton expedition. During the week of the centenary of the First World War we spent a special week learning all about the conflict with special reading activities and a study of One Boy’s War by Lynn Huggins-Cooper.


Maths: This term has been dedicated to studying number and place value for the first few weeks, and the four operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) for the rest of the term. Pupils have consolidated their learning with problem solving tasks and regular marathon miles and number bond tests.


Science: We began the term by studying animals and classification and moved onto studying humans as well. Memorable moments included the bug hunt in the field and trying to dissolve eggs in various liquids to demonstrate how tooth decay occurs.


Topic: ‘Life in the freezer’ has mainly been a study of geography this term, but has linked also to the history of Shackleton’s expeditions to the frozen wastes. We have learned about the geography, features, and location of the Arctic region and the Antarctic and compared their ecosystems and climates. We have also thought extensively about how to survive in these unique habitats. Our learning was concluded with a fantastic ‘WOW’ day where the whole phase wrapped up warm and went onto the field to pull their expedition sledges around a course designed to test their teamwork and stamina!


PE: The children have been learning slightly different things in their classes in different orders. This term has mainly been dedicated to tennis and gymnastics.


ICT: The IT focus for this term has been E-safety, which has been taught as part of our assemblies as well.


PSHE: The children have been learning about healthy lifestyles. This has included lessons about good nutrition, hygiene, and maintaining positive relationships with peers.


RE: As part of our new phase timetable, two of the classes have been learning about founders and prophets and have moved onto learning about religious festivals. The Panthers class will move onto these topics in the spring carousel.


French: Madame Sinclair has been teaching the children numbers to 30, ‘meet and greet,’ and colours and clothing.


Music: Panthers class have been learning the trumpet in their weekly lessons. The other classes have been singing a range of songs throughout the term.


Art/DT: The term began with a study of the northern lights in oil pastels and continued with some work on Seurat and pointillism. We finished the term by creating polar dioramas from shoeboxes.


Looking Ahead: Spring Term

Next term’s topic is ‘a journey through time’ and will cover British history from the Stone Age to about 400AD.  There will be an opening WOW day in January on a Stone Age theme, a special Roman day later in the term, and a trip to the Chiltern Open Air Museum in March. Details about the trip will be sent out in January. Leopards class be going swimming and having trumpet lessons in the spring term.  


English: The children will be studying various texts linked to the topic, the first being Stone Age Boy by Satoshi Kitamura and Stig of the Dump by Clive King. The children will be developing their descriptive writing skills and will have the chance to also learn about a range of non-fiction writing styles such as newspaper writing in the context of the Boudicca uprising.


Maths: The children will continue to study multiplication and division methods and problem solving before moving on to study measurement (length, area, and perimeter) then decimals and fractions for the remainder of the term.


Science: The unit of study for the first part of the term will be sound, and after half term we will be studying states of matter.


Topic: The children will begin the unit of study with a Stone Age WOW day and learn about British pre-history. After half term the focus will move on to the Roman invasion and the Boudicca uprising.


PE: The main topics of the term will be dance and invasion games.


ICT: The children will be exploring coding with Scratch and Kodu and finding opportunities to use the internet for research in their topic studies.

PSHE: The spring unit of study will cover relationships, friendships, managing emotions, and resolving conflicts.


Music: Leopards class will be learning the trumpet this term and all classes will be singing Stone Age songs from the sing-up scheme of learning.


Art/DT: We will be studying and making our own cave paintings and also examining and reproducing the mosaic art of the Romans.


French: Madame Sinclair will be teaching the calendar in French, names for parts of the body, and all about food and French cafes.


RE: As the carousel timetable for the phase shifts (for several afternoon subjects) the different classes will be studying founders and prophets, religious festivals, and symbols and symbolism according to how far along they are in the syllabus.



Children will continue to have cross-curricular homework set every Friday, alongside their usual spellings which are tested weekly. Children will continue to be tested once a week on their times tables and number bonds. It is also expected that children present their reading records at least once a week, and that there is evidence of reading happening at home (either independently or with a parent) at least 3 times a week.


PE kit days:

In the spring, Panthers and Cheetahs will be having PE on Mondays and Fridays, and Leopards will have PE on Tuesdays and swimming on Fridays.


Finally: On behalf of the entire LKS2 teaching staff I would like to say thank you once again to all of the Year 3/4 parents and carers for supporting us in the classroom and beyond. The children have done marvellously well this term because of it. We look forward to another fantastic term in January!


Mr L Jackson

Year 3/4 Phase Leader