St Pauls CE Primary School

St Paul's CE Primary School

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Year 4

Great Barrier Reef Class Autumn Term overview and parent information


This term we are starting with some exciting non-fiction work based on the Great Barrier Reef. Then we will be travelling from Australia to the steppes of Central Asia. For this unit we will be looking at a book called Tales Told in Tents, a collection of short stories based on traditional life in this area. Using this book as inspiration the children will be writing detailed setting and character descriptions and learning how to punctuate speech.


We are combining science and geography while we study the Great Barrier Reef. Learning about conservation, ecosystems and the delicate balance of life. We will develop our atlas skills and understanding of different cultures through our work on Central Asia.


States of matter is our topic for this term. The children will be exploring different materials and their properties as well as learning about evaporation and condensation in relation to the water cycle.

Grammar is taught discreetly and also embedded in the teaching of creative writing. Handwriting is taught regularly, working towards a fluent and joined hand.

Spellings are given out and tested on a Friday. Please help your child to learn these by using them in context of a sentence rather than in isolation. Please feel free to ask me if you feel unsure how to do this. Spellings will be based upon patterns and rules, including phonetic and grammatical rules. Sometimes they will include topic vocabulary and high frequency rules.


All pupils are expected and encouraged to read at least five times a week at home. Please support them to do this, their reading logs need to be filled in regularly so they can be checked. Reading logs should be handed in on a Friday so (whilst we get into our routine) help your child remember to have put in their bag Thursday evening.


Mathematics is taught daily with a regular focus on investigation and applying in addition to securing calculation methods. Problem solving skills are developed with the aim of enabling all children to become confident at ‘having a go’. All children are given tasks with appropriate challenge and depending on their competency will be supported and/or encouraged to be independent learners accordingly. Checking, estimating and generalising are essential mathematical skills that are developed through the whole of KS2.

We also work on mental recall of facts and calculation methods frequently, with the intention of children achieving their bronze, silver, and gold times table awards. Please help your child secure their times table facts with regular times table practise at home. Again, please feel free to discuss with me ideas about how this can be done.


The Great Barrier Reef is the inspiration for much of our art in the first few weeks. Later in the term the children will be using traditional felt making techniques to make their own piece of felt, using a Central Asian design.


Generally speaking, if your child is well enough for school they should also be well enough to take part in PE.  However, if there are any exceptions to the rule, please speak to the office or the teacher and provide a note.

Ourdoor PE - Tuesday . The children will need to have trainers or other suitable sports shoes. If it is a cold day the children may wear black leggings or tracksuit bottoms. 

Indoor PE - Wednesday.


We will begin our ukulele lessons this term, which will be led by an external music teacher. All children will be given a school ukulele to take home a practise. All aspects of music will be covered in the lessons including learning standard notation, singing and percussive accompaniments.


Pupils will have a dedicated French lesson every week with a specialist teacher, building upon their previous learning.


We will be using the ipads and laptops to explore coding using Espresso Discovery. We will also be discussing ESafety and how to stay safe online.


The theme for RE is vulnerability this term.



Weekly Reports:

You will be familiar with the weekly report sheets from last year.  Please remember that these will not give detailed accounts of progress, but just let you know that things are generally going well or let you know of any other messages.

The ticks relate to our chart in class and are linked to house-points and sticker/ certificate rewards.

Please remember to sign the sheet and return to school every Monday.


Homework is given out on Thursday and needs to come back to school on Tuesday.   The expectation is that homework is done, and presented in line with how we expect pupils to present their class work – neatly in pencil or pen (not ballpoint please).   The work will be based upon what we have covered in class so pupils should be able to complete it independently, but please support your child by scanning over and encouraging best efforts.  

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to talk to me after school for a brief chat, or make an appointment for a longer meeting if necessary.


Spellings Autumn term

17/11/17              17/11/17 meanings



For holiday spellings look back over your spellings from this half term







Homework Autumn term