Welcome to Year 6!
Welcome to Year 6 - otherwise known as Owl Class. Thank you for visiting our class page. On this page you will find key information about our curriculum and our classroom. We will also be sharing some of our learning with you so please come back to visit to see what is new!
It is a privilege for me to teach your child and I look forward to working with you and the children to make their final year at Icknield a very special one.
Year 6 is an important year; it provides new opportunities for the children including our four-day residential visit to CEES Stibbington Residential Centre near Peterborough (from Monday 14th October 2019), new roles of responsibility (including house captains for those elected, and for all to become a ‘buddy’ to a child in the Reception class). In addition, we will be preparing for national tests (SATs) in May 2020 and transition to secondary school. I will expect the oldest pupils in the school to exhibit exemplary behaviour at all times, to adopt a positive, active approach to their own learning and to work very hard with me to raise their achievement by the end of KS2.
Although we provide pupils with all of the stationery they require - along with a zip wallet to keep it all in - they may bring a pencil case of their own, if they wish to do so (as long as it will fit comfortably inside a classroom tray). A school bag is very useful for carrying books and letters between home and school on a daily basis. Please encourage your Year 6 child to pack his/her own school bag, returning reading book and reading record every day. Please ensure that your child has a named water bottle in school at all times. This should contain only water, not juice or squash. Pupils will be invited to drink water when they come in from break times and on request if needed. Pupils may bring a fruit snack for morning break times.
Please ensure that you are signed into Class Dojo and refer to this for regular news and updates regarding Year 6, including homework details.
I look forward to watching your child flourish this year and to discussing their progress with you at consultation evenings. Should you have any concerns regarding your child’s progress or welfare, please do not hesitate to come and see me. Daily attendance is vitally important to your child’s learning. We encourage the children to arrive in school and begin working from 8.45am and although you may be able to catch me or a teaching assistant briefly to pass on an urgent message at this time, it would be very much appreciated if you could try to see us at the end of the school day. Please come in to see me on any Wednesday or Friday, or contact me via Class Dojo to arrange a meeting at another mutually-convenient time.
Year 6 teacher
English subject leader
Staff in Year 6
Our class teacher is Mrs Arnold, who is a very experienced teacher in her fourth year of teaching Year 6 full-time. She has been a maths subject leader for many years, but has recently become English subject lead instead. She is also the deputy headteacher and a governor at Icknield.
Mrs Debbie Farragher (teaching assistant) provides allocated pupil support on a full-time basis in Year 6 and Mrs Hodson, a qualified HLTA (Higher Level Teaching Assistant), joins us to provide targeted TA support on Monday mornings and as an HLTA to provide teaching cover for Mrs Arnold on Monday and Thursday afternoons.
Please be aware that Mrs Arnold will be teaching the class all day on Tuesdays, Wednesday and Fridays and in the mornings only on Mondays and Thursdays due to 'PPA' (Planning, Preparation and Assessment) release time provided for a class teacher and also for her other role of deputy headteacher.
Year 6 have a weekly session of PE (outdoor games), taught by Mrs Chris Seymour (sports coach) on Thursday afternoons. In the first half of the autumn term, the other weekly session of PE will be dance taught by Miss Christina (visiting dance teacher) on Monday afternoons; in the second half of term this will be replaced by gymnastics taught by Mrs Arnold on Friday mornings. Please see further information regarding our weekly timetable.
Our topic this term is 'Journeys'. Much of our work across the curriculum will relate to this overarching theme:
In science, we will be investigating the journey of blood around the human circulatory system, the journey that light takes from source to eye and the journey of electricity around various circuits. A project in design technology will be linked to our work in science.
In history, we will be journeying back in time to discover the causes, nature and key turning points of World War 1 and 2. During our residential visit, we will roleplay taking a journey as WW2 evacuees and experience what life was like for children in 1940. Our art work this term will relate to the world at war. In music, we will listen to and learn some wartime songs as well as developing part-singing in preparation for our Christmas concert. In computing, the children will revise e-safety before carrying out online research about the world wars. They will then complete a programming project relating to WW2 spies.
In English, we will be reading 'War Horse' by Michael Morpurgo, which recounts the journey of horse and owner through World War One. Among other pieces of writing, we will compose newspaper reports based on the consequences of Goldilocks' journey into the forest and about events that triggered WW1 when Franz Ferdinand took a journey into Bosnia. We will also write narratives based on the book 'Kensuke's Kingdom' in which the main character journeys around the world and links are made with WW2.
In geography, as well as the practical fieldwork relating to map reading and rivers (carried out during our residential visit), we will take a journey around the world to revise and develop locational knowledge.
In maths, our focus will be on number and calculation, revising place value up to ten million and calculation strategies in all four operations, We will also develop understanding of the properties of number (e.g. multiples, factors and primes) and of fractions, decimals and percentages.
In addition, separate topics will be covered in RE, PSHE and PE.
Some important dates for your diary
Monday 14th - Thursday 17th October 2019: Year 6 residential visit to CEES Stibbington Centre
Monday 21st - Friday 25th October 2019: Half term holiday
Monday 4th - Thursday 7th November 2019: Travelling Book Fair in school
Friday 8th November 2019: Remembrance assembly with The Royal British Legion for children and grandparents 2.30pm
Thursday 12th December 2019: School Christmas lunch and KS2 Christmas Concert 7pm - 8pm at St Mary's Church, Sawston
Wednesday 18th December 2019: Last day of autumn term for children
Monday 6h January 2020: Children back to school for spring term
Tuesday 21st and Tuesday 28th January: SATs information evenings for Year 6 parents and pupils
Monday 11th - Thursday 14th May 2020: Year 6 pupils take national tests (SATs) in reading, SPaG (spelling, punctuation and grammar) and mathematics (please ensure your child is in school this week)
Key Weekly Information
Outdoor games will be during Thursday afternoons with additional PE on Monday afternoons in the first half of term and Friday mornings in the second half. Please ensure that your child has a full, named P.E kit in line with school guidelines, including a jumper/sweatshirt additional to the one worn in class, a pair of outdoor P.E shoes, preferably trainers, and - in the colder weather - a pair of tracksuit bottoms. It is useful if PE kits can remain in school for every week day.
Pupils in Year 6 are currently expected to read an appropriate book from home or school - at least five days per week and the equivalent of at least ten pages per day is recommended. Reading a variety of fiction and non-fiction, from novels to recipe books. Please continue to hear your child read as often as possible; even if your child is a fluent reader, it is vitally important to comprehension that they are questioned about what they read. You are also strongly encouraged to read to your child regularly, particularly in order to expose him/her to vocabulary and sentence structures found in higher-level texts that children may not yet be able to read easily for themselves; discussion about the content of such texts is invaluable in developing children's understanding of more sophisticated material and can also have a very positive impact on their writing ability.
Daily practice of the spelling rule or letter pattern being learnt in school each week (communicated to parents via a sheet brought home with the children and/or on Class Dojo), as well practising approximately 5 words per week from the Year 5/6 spelling list (sent home at the beginning of term) is the expectation.
Please make a point of checking that your child can recall addition and subtraction facts up to 20 at some speed (without having to count) e.g. 8 + 6; 13 - 7 etc. These facts should have been learnt off by heart in earlier years and Year 6 children need them 'at their fingertips'. Times table facts up to 12 x 12 and related division facts should have been learnt by the end of Year 4. If your child cannot recall all of these facts without resorting to counting, it is vital to practise any unknown facts at home. During the autumn term, a weekly practice sheet will be sent home to support practising tables three times during the week - this sheet will show you the facts your child is currently working on, but please note that children who do not yet know all of the tables should still be practising daily. They may enjoy practising facts using 'Times Table Rockstars' which children can access online using usernames and passwords provided for each child by the school. The expectation is that all tables will be learnt no later than Christmas.
Please note that all of the above is ongoing and should be happening continually, whether or not children bring home specific lists or activities at the end of each week. Spelling rules (as opposed to a particular set of words) as well as multiplication and division facts will usually be tested towards the end of each week (on Thursdays and Fridays) and progress with the Year 5/6 spelling list will be checked at least once each term.
If your child's handwriting is not yet joined, this is something that should now be practised at home - maybe your child could read and copy out some poems that they enjoy. The aim is for all Year 6 children to have earned a pen licence by Christmas. If your child finds it challenging to write at length and/or to use punctuation accurately, practising some writing at home - about anything of interest - would support learning in school. Please do not hesitate to come and see Mrs Arnold if you feel that your child would benefit from additional work in particular areas of learning e.g.maths concepts, as she will be happy to advise you on supporting learning at home. Alternatively, many Year 6 practice books for maths, English and science are available from any of the larger bookshops and many websites provide online practice of key skills in preparation for SATs.
Occasionally, the class may be asked to carry out additional activities e.g. fact-finding tasks relating to the class topic, activities to consolidate learning in a particular area such as maths, or later on in the year, practice activities relating to SATs. These tasks are designed to support your child's progress with learning in school but are usually optional.
Please refer to Class Dojo for weekly updates regarding homework.