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A walk around Year 3

Welcome, as the school year progresses we look forward to populating this page with all sorts of interesting information from Year 3.

Term 3 update (February 2019) - It has been another busy but exciting term in year 3, we have loved learning all about our topic Perilous Pompeii. In English we have been inspired in our writing by Christina Balit’s novel: ‘Escape From Pompeii’. We enjoyed writing about Mount Vesuvius as it erupted over the town of Pompeii and have been completely absorbed by the events that occurred back in 79AD. In our topic we looked at the invasion of Britain, including the rebellion led by the fearless woman warrior ‘Boudicca’, as well as exploring ‘What the Romans have done for us’; discussing the legacy left behind by them.

There have been so many highlights of the topic however we were incredibly lucky to be able visit the Roman Museum, creating our own near-minted coins and using model catapults. Roman Day was another fantastic opportunity to explore our topic. We started the day by making Roman shields and learning about the different defence tactics the army would have acquired although we found that it was quite tricky to stay in formation and march! In the afternoon the school hall was transformed into a Roman Market Square and we had to complete as many activities as possible. The activities included: Roman catapults, chariot racing, food testing, mosaic colouring, coin rubbings and Roman children’s games.

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Visit to the Roman museum

In art we designed and created our own Roman Mosaics. At first we explored what the mosaics were like and designed our own mosaics using cubes. This gave us an opportunity to revise our creations before deciding on our final designs. It was a tricky task to work with the small foam tiles and took a lot of concentration however the end results were brilliant and we are really proud of our creations!

We enjoyed our Building Learning Power day in Year 3; with our task being to build a raft that could carry a family of potato people away from Mount Vesuvius. We learnt a lot of important skills during this day. Our first task involved making links between objects, we discussed contrasts and comparisons in order to find out what all the objects had in common. We then explored what materials floated and what materials sank, this investigation helped us to decide what materials we would use to build our own vessel. Furthermore, by recognising links and patterns with objects that do float or sink, we were able to assemble some impressive and sturdy vessels which were tested on the water. Most of them were quite successful.

In order to design our vessels we had the use the skill of imagining. It was important to imagine what our finished boat would look like, and to keep asking those ‘what if?’ questions so we could design best vessel possible. Following the creation time, we had opportunities to revise and improve the models. When it came to testing, we were really excited to see if our vessels were able to carry the potato family to safety, some were able to hold 5 potatoes but some sank quite quickly. We discussed what we would do differently next time and what went well but we are looking forward to using our skills in other areas of our learning!

For Maths this term, we have looked more closely at the highly crucial skills of money, giving change, reading data and measuring. This has really enabled us to get practical in apply Maths skills we have developed during Year 3 already. Each of us were able to tackle some challenging maths problems using strategies of adding and subtracting that we have been working on this year. In Science, our topic has taken us to exploring forces to see how friction affects the way a car runs on a slope and have devised a number of investigations into the uses of magnets and tests to see which materials are magnetic.

Although, we are tired at the end of another jam-packed term we will definitely be raring to go when we return for Term 4 labelled: ‘Treats and tropics’. See you there…

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Term 2 update: As we reach the end of term 2, we wanted to share some of the exciting things Year 3 have been up to over the past few weeks. We are really enjoying preparing for our Christmas production ‘The Amazing Advent Calendar’. As a team we have created props, scenery and costumes during our topic lessons as well as practising dances, songs and learning lines. We hope you will join us for our performances on Monday 17thDecember, it is sure to be a great show!

In Literacy we joined in with celebrating 40 years of the well-known book ‘The Snowman’ by becoming authors for our own versions of this story. Amazingly, we got to see how a famous and successful author writes and generates ideas for a novel as we met Michael Morpurgo during ‘Puffin live’ an online live meeting with him. As well as this, we were taught how to illustrate a snowman by a professional.

In maths we have continued developing our understanding of addition and subtraction, building on new strategies to tackle some tricky questions. Now, we have moved on to solving multiplication and division problems which we are confident will help us with passing those challenging times-tables test.

Each class visited the Cathedral as part of a Christmas experience day, learning about the Nativity and the First ever Christmas. We found it really interesting to see the story told through the stained-glass windows and Christmas displays before making our own stain-glass windows. Also, some of us joined many children from the rest of the school on a trip to the Marlowe Theatre to see the Pantomime production of ‘Cinderella’. Many of us were so excited we were on the edge of the seats.

If you were to wander around our classrooms, you may see some of the amazing art work we have created including a Christmas wreath thinking about things we are hopeful for as we head towards the new year. Additionally, on display, are our incredible firework creations and winter scenes.

It’s been a wonderful term in Year 3 and we are looking forward to a restful holiday before beginning another exciting term. Happy Christmas from all of us!

An overview of Term 1:

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Hola, our learning this term has been based around our ‘Yabbadabbadoo!’ topic and our text ‘Stone Age Boy’.

We have all had a go at writing our own version of the story in which the protagonist travels back in time to learn about how people lived in the Stone Age, meeting wild cave bears along the way. We have really focused on expanding our vocabulary in both our reading and writing lessons, and we’ve had a go at using drama to get in to the role of the different characters.

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To further get into role, we have made prehistoric inspired jewellery and used our Forest School session to create Cave Art using natural materials. Some of us got in quite a mess! As did we, when making Stone Age bread in the school kitchen!

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Year 3 were extremely excited when the local expert on fossils, Dr Skinner came to visit. The Year 3 area was turned into a museum exhibition and the children had a real hands-on experience, looking at his collection of fossils. Similarly, one of our topic lessons was spent having a go at being archaeologists, when we examined some artefacts from different periods of history, found many years ago during the Canterbury Big Dig.

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Our topic lessons, have also led to us investigating different features from the Stone Age, Bronze Age and Iron Age eras, including the tools and weapons used and the homes they lived in. We’ll be continuing with this next term, when we learn about the different animals alive in those times and the foods eaten.

Science lessons have seen us exploring different types of rocks and we have studied how different rock types are formed. We even investigated which rock would be most suitable for building a statue of Mr Pywell in the school grounds. We determined that granite would be best as it would stand the test of time, just like him. 

As this has been our first time settling into the Junior School we have also invested time in developing our teamwork and collaborative learning. To this end, we have participated in several house team games where we got to know other members of our Year 3 team and we have spent time developing our growth mindset skills. In Year 3, we wholeheartedly believe in ‘The Power of Yet’.

The term finished with each class pulling together to perform their Harvest Festival piece in the church. The teachers were really impressed with their performances and behaviour throughout the service. What a smashing end to our first term!

Hasta la vista.

Week 4 Monday 24th September – Friday 28th September - Vamos España!

This week in year 3 we celebrated European Day of Languages. With our passports and boarding passes we headed for the departure lounge to board our flight to Valencia! Of course we had to try a variety of Spanish delicacies, including Tortilla Espanola, Paella and cured meats. Also, it would not be a trip to España without some flamenco dancing. Most importantly we had a go at speaking the language, which will carry on during our Spanish lessons throughout the year.

In English we have ventured back to the Stone Age and we have loved exploring Satoshi Kitamura’s book ‘Stone Age Boy’. We are focusing on our value of creativity and making the story our own. We have enjoyed being super imaginative and can’t wait for the finished pieces.

In Science the Year 3 children have been given an extremely important job, we have been recruited to help Mr Pywell decide on the correct type of rock for his new statue. We have had to put our investigative hats on, and tested the hardness and permeability of rocks. It was a lot of responsibility, but by using our investigative and reasoning skills we decided granite would be most suitable.

It has been another busy week in Year 3 but we cannot wait to explore our Yabadabadoo topic more next week!

Term 1 Week 1

The children’s first week at the Junior’s has been an interesting one to say the least! On Tuesday morning, in our first year group assembly, Mr Raffell burst in to the room to inform us that some unusual tracks, a strange object and something rather disgusting had been found on the school field. We put on our detective hats and used the clues left behind to predict what had happened inside the grounds so close to our classrooms! There were various hypotheses and many questions posed – it was interesting to compare our speculations with our friends. We were so desperate to discover what was inside the egg that some of us continued to observe the scene during our break and lunch time!

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Dippy the dinosaur

wk1t1 d   Dippy, the Natural History Museum’s iconic Diplodocus cast is going on a natural history adventure across the UK.

We enjoyed developing our debate skills by arguing either for Dippy to STAY or for him to GO. Debating is a very important skill and we had to ensure we listened carefully to the opposing sides argument and respond politely and clearly with our own view. Here are some of the reasons we came up with:

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Challenger Troupe - 6th and 7th September 2018

All children in Years 3 and 4 started their new term enjoying some outdoor activities with their class and teacher with the Challenger Troop. The Challenger Troop team visit us each year and provide an exciting range of challenges to encourage our children to get to know each other, develop their communication skills and challenge themselves by completing an Obstacle course.

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This visit introduces Year 3 children to our core school values of Independence, Respect and Creativity. The activities encourage their independence and the way they communicate with their peers and staff. Participating develops the children’s ability to think round problems and come up with solutions to nurture their creative thinking skills.

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Head Teacher: Mr. Stuart Pywell Address: Hales Drive, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7AD Tel: 01227 464119 Email: admin@ststephensjuniorschool.co.uk
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