Friday 13th June

Hi everyone

Lots of plants around school are flowering at the moment but we discovered that there are plants that never flower or produce seeds in this week’s science task.

It’s good to see how much more confident the children have become in using the four maths operations. In September memorising times tables facts was tricky for some children but now formal written multiplication of numbers with 2, 3, 4 or 5 digits is no problem at all. Other maths news: the boys beat the girls in a Sumdog competition this week. They answered almost twice as many questions as the girls. However, next week we’ll do the contest again but this time the winning team will be the one that answers the most questions correctly.

On Thursday we learned to make iMovie trailers. The children choose a genre and then add video, photos and sound effects. Next week we’ll turn the classroom into a cinema and watch the finished films. I hope I don’t choke on my popcorn.

My choices Gold Book were Lubaya and Liam.  Liam has made outstanding progress: 24 months in maths and 26 months in reading.  He has a great attitude both in class and in the playground.  Liam is enthusiastic, and always positive and kind.  The most pleasing change in Lubaya in Year 4, has been to see the growth in her confidence.  She has gained a tremendous amount of belief, resilience and determination and that has had a massive impact on her progress and potential for the future. 19 months progress in Maths and 14 in reading.

Annual reports were given out today.  I tried to have a bit of fun by teasing the children about what I had written but nobody was fooled. They all knew that they had a lot to be proud of, and despite occasional barks and growls they know that I care for them deeply.  I have tried really hard to find the right words to express my thoughts and feelings about how your child has progressed in Y4 but please let me know if there is anything that you would like to discuss.

5 days left. I hope that they are days that we will never forget.

Have a great weekend.

Mr. Moore

Friday 6th July

Hi everyone

Even though Birkdale lost once again, Sports Day went very well today. Excellence, determination and effort were displayed in abundance by the amazing ACE athletes and some of the teachers and parents too!  My plans to steal gold by feeding the team jelly beans failed. My theory was that a sugar rush would make them run faster.  It doesn’t. They just talk faster and laugh harder. Hopefully Gareth Southgate has a better plan.

This week I handed my class over to Miss Judge for transition to Year 5.  The children were really keen to tell me about what a great time they had, and they seemed especially excited about performing MacBeth next year.  Miss Judge also enjoyed having my class for a trial period.  She was very impressed by their good behaviour and their attitudes, and she found them all ‘not guilty’.  As you can imagine, I felt very proud and relieved by the verdict.  Hamza, Ramtin and Harley won prizes for being marvellous mathematicians, and Miss Judge also gave her ruling on who should be the Learners of the Week.  Arman and Susan were named as the children who should receive maximum praise.  Susan submitted a wealth of high quality written evidence to prove that she is ready for Y5, and Arman’s incisive comments, questions and his willingness to offer totally honest answers when under pressure were the key factors in Miss Judge’s decision.  Well done everyone, I think we got away with it.

Uh oh!  I spoke too soon.  Apparently we have to prove that we are the best class in the whole world all over again. Next week two teachers from Scarborough will be visiting ACE to investigate how we use Google Classroom to write and collaborate.  A visit to the seaside in September is one of the possible outcomes, so fingers crossed that truth and justice will prevail.

Have a great weekend

Mr. Moore

 

Friday 29th June

Hi everyone

I’ll start with the best news this week; Y4DM will become Y5MJ next year. I am so pleased that Miss Judge will be taking care of my class next year. Her wonderful calmness and immaculately tidy classroom will be a beautiful and well-earned contrast for my pupils. However, they won’t be totally free of my influence next year, as I will be teaching them for at least one or two lessons in Computing and Philosophy.

Well done to everyone for not melting during Sports Day practice today. Everyone managed to keep their cool despite constant annoyance from tiny, flying insects. Some children in Birkdale looked like their yellow T-shirts were a dot-to-dot pattern waiting to be completed.

I was delighted and incredibly proud of the Big Write that the children produced this week. They wrote letters to protest about orcas being kept in sealife centres. Their anger and sadness produced powerful writing that really showed the progress that they have made this year.  Liam, Naza, Susan, Ramtin, Hamza, Abigail, Deacon, Olaseni, Benjamin, Sonny and Stella, in fact, everyone tried harder than ever before to do their very best work.  No one gave anything less than 100% but I just had to send Jess to Mrs. Potter for proving that giving more than 100% is possible.

MyMiniMaths tasks are having a really strong impact in improving arithmetic skills in Y4. The children have become much more confident in using written methods for all four maths operations. Singher has been an unbeatable mathematician this week. Her score of 40 out of 40 on the end of year test and her ability to explain how to divide with 2 digits proved that she is more than ready for Y5.

Thanks so much to Lubaya, Lilly Anna, Harley and Fatimah, who put a huge amount of energy and effort into preparing our stall for the Summer Fair. Many other children got involved and helped with the project but without their enthusiasm and help we would have had no stall at all. Way back in September my class showed that they were fascinated by our study of how materials can be solids, liquids, gases and also a state of matter somewhere in between; plasma. The craze for creating slime has continued all year with many children showing their keenness for Chemistry by teaching/forcing their parents to create slime in the kitchens all over Alwoodley, Moortown and as far away as Birmingham. Despite spending several million pounds on supplies for our Summer Fair project, our attempts to make slime failed miserably. For a while, the shared area in KS2 looked like a laboratory from a mad scientist’s nightmare. Thankfully, we were much more successful in making ooblek (cornstarch based slime) which meant a quick change of pricing and advertising but at least we had product to sell on our stall.

Reviewing what you have written is a really important part of the creative writing process. Y4DM can now create documents online, which they can simultaneously edit with other children. The potential for using this skill to improve peer feedback is enormous.

Learners of the Week have chosen themselves. Fatimah achieved very impressive scores on the assessments and she has been a driving force in getting the Summer Fair stall up and running. Miss Judge will love having such a great organiser to help her next year. Sadly, my next Learner of the Week won’t be here to make Miss Judge smile. Elyssa left our class today to attend a school closer to home. We will miss her very, very much. Her smile and positive attitude has lit up our classroom, and her progress and confidence has been fantastic.

Enjoy the warm weather while it lasts. It will be gone before you know it.

Mr. Moore

Friday 22nd June

Hi everyone

Dylan Mottley Henry, a professional football player came to visit us today. He gave us some great coaching tips and got everybody involved in some fun training drills. I was really pleased that Dylan went out of his way to remind the children about how important it is to work hard at school. Clever in the classroom + brilliant with the ball + determination = unbeatable.

We had more fun than is probably allowed at school when we made our own posters from Edvard Munch’s painting The Scream. We placed our own heads in the picture and gave it a personalised caption. My favourite was ‘When Harley discovered there was no wi-fi at Brownie Camp’.

Our writing focus this week was to look at some of the reasons for and against keeping orcas in captivity. When the children write their arguments in full next week I’m sure that they will be passionately and powerfully persuasive.

We are revising Maths topics at the moment and I was very pleased with how much some children have managed to remember. Susan scored 44 out of 45 on a test of all Year 4 objectives, Singher got 43 and Ramtin was third with 41. There has been excellent progress from many others, especially Arman, Lubaya, Evie Rae, Naza and Abigail.

Learners of the Week are Andrea and Kyron. Andrea has been chosen very recently but her effort and progress is relentless. Summer holidays haven’t started yet and Andrea intends to keep working hard right until the last minute of the last day. I have chosen Kyron for having one of his fabulous weeks. Every week is good but this week he has been bubbling with enthusiasm, optimism and energy. His positive attitude has really helped to keep us all smiling during assessment week.

Have a great weekend

Mr Moore

Friday 15th June

First of all, Happy Eid to everyone who is celebrating today.

Secondly, hooray! We won the Leeds Sumdog contest and earned a free six months subscription. My class answered 22724 questions, and Stella, Liam and Singher were in the top 10 of the 251 students who took part. Best of all, we finally beat Mr Kay’s class!

Once again, this has been a week filled with kindness and generosity. All over school, children had been showing that they understand the value of humility and why we should put others first. Isla, the Leeds Children’s Lord Mayor came to see us on Wednesday to find out what we were doing for Generous June. She was so impressed and so pleased with what she heard and saw that she said she didn’t want to leave.

Pity, horror and anger are some of the emotions that the children felt when we learned about the plight of orcas held in captivity. They were truly shocked to find out that some of these magnificent creatures are denied the freedom to swim in the oceans just to entertain us. Stella’s was the first voice to demand that we write letters of protest. When we watched a video about Keiko the killer whale, everyone cheered and applauded as they saw him swim in the seas and join a pod of orcas after 20 years of living in a tank. I like to think that I’m pretty good at writing but I simply cannot find words to express how proud I was of my class at that moment.

Leigha and Guzal are the Learners of the week. Guzal has been getting through her work really quickly, showing concentration and a desire for learning in all lessons. Progress this week has been remarkable. Leigha has had a superb week too. She has tried to give maximum effort and focus in every single task and she kindly and generously gave up lots of her breaktimes to help make our indoor and outdoor classroom a better place. I have been extremely impressed.

Nature taught us another lesson about humility, generosity and kindness today. This afternoon some children helped to clean up the outdoor area at the back of our classroom. Andrea, Ronnie and Abigail were even brave enough to help me to clean up our wildlife pond. Whilst we were working we were able to share knowledge, ask questions and to learn in the most natural and fulfilling way. After removing several trees worth of decaying leaves, we watched the frogs and tadpoles swim freely, and within seconds of cleaning the birdbath, Ronnie and I stood in amazement, 2 metres from a sparrow, watching it as it drank thirstily and gratefully. Isla’s idea that Kindness Costs Nothing is true but I think we can add some extra words.

Kindness costs nothing and is more precious than anything.

Have a good weekend.

Mr Moore

Friday 8th June

Hi everyone

My class kicked off Generous June by opening the Kindness Kiosk. If anyone is feeling lonely at playtime then they can visit the stall to find a friend and receive a sticker with a kind message on it. Well done to those children who have given up their time to help with this part of the project.

We made another contribution to Generous June by making and selling Bombay potatoes with Mrs. Walker. The proceeds will be donated to St. Gemma’s Hospice and Dogs’ Trust charities.  Next week, Isla, the Leeds Children’s Lord Mayor will be visiting ACE to find out about all the generosity and kindness activities that have been happening all over school.

There has been plenty of deep thinking going on in Year 4 this week.  We have explored the concept of kindness and generosity, discussed the advantages and disadvantages of having a Viking as a friend, and we have thought about how to create a predator that would be at the very top of the food chain.

The Talent Show this afternoon was a great way to start the weekend.  Although Singher had the enormous pressure of being the first act to perform, I thought she did really well. It must’ve been very stressful for Euanson too as he had to wait until the very end to show his amazing skills. Team Unicorn’s dance showed great balance, strength, flexibility and, of course, wonderful teamwork. I was very proud of all of the children in my class who took part.

The homework focus for Maths is problem solving with money, as well as a challenge about prime numbers, and the English topic is spelling sounds.

Deacon earned 21 units on Lexia this week and Ramtin has answered 2201 questions on Sumdog in the last 7 days.  Wow!  However, I have chosen two children to be Learners of the Week to link in with Generous June.  Both Rhys and Susan set great examples by their attitudes to learning and their attitudes to all pupils and adults in school. They generously give their best in their work, and they are humble and kind towards others.

Have a good weekend

Mr Moore

Friday 25th May

Hi everyone

Unfortunately, we didn’t manage to complete some of the tasks that I had planned for this week. If it were up to me, I would cancel the holiday. Not because we have so much more still to do, but because we are having so much fun and loving learning.

I’d like to start this week’s roundup with sharing the outstanding musical talents of Singher and Euanson.

This week Ramtin, Hamza, Jessica and I formed a Garageband band. I taught them how to use major and minor chords to make simple songs. At the moment we’re a guitar group but we plan to find a drummer and a lead singer next term. We’re negotiating right now with Singher and Euanson to see if they will agree to be our keyboard players. However, even though we’ve not even recorded our first album, I’m a bit worried that Ramtin’s going to realise he’s incredibly talented and then split from the band. Yesterday I set the children the task of composing some music using Garageband to use as a backing track for their Viking saga. Ramtin created a piece in E minor, exported it to iMovie, added the writing he had done by importing the Key Note file from his Google Drive, and then looped the music to fit the movie. Ramtin then posted his work to the assignment on Google Classroom. If this sounds a bit complicated and clever, it’s because it is; and it sounds great too.

MyMiniMaths tasks are really helping to improve fluency and confidence with arithmetic skills. It is a great website to use if you want to do extra homework.

Homework for the holidays: antonyms crossword and a writing task (English), and a worksheet on using a calendar (Maths). As usual, I will set Sumdog challenges, assessments and contests, and please try to make sure that Lexia usage targets are met.

Learners of the Week are Ramtin and Andrea. Ramtin has been an exceptional example to everyone this week through his eagerness to work and help as much as he can, and for simply being exceptional. Progress is why I have chosen Andrea. Not only is her confidence in Maths improving rapidly, she is also making terrific steps forward in writing and with reading comprehension.

Enjoy the break

Mr Moore

PS Happy birthday Kyron.

Friday 18th May

Hi everyone

This week has left me exhausted. Hopefully more than a few children feel the same but I think that some pupils need to think about whether they have given all that they could.

There has been no lack of effort from Sonny.  His Viking saga has grown even longer and is now even more thrilling and entertaining.  Next week we will record at least some of his masterpiece when we work on bringing the best ideas of Y4 together in a collaborative story.

Please ask your child why King Alfred is called The Great. We found the answers by searching the Internet with our new iPads (thank you Mrs Stott). More knowledge and computing skills were gained when the children used KeyNote, Slides or Pages to record and present information about the countries that will take part in the football World Cup in Russia.

Gold Book stars today were Lubaya and Euanson. Lubaya was chosen for excellent progress in Maths. Through hard work and determination she has become more confident, more able, and best of all, she actually enjoys Maths lessons nowadays.

Euanson is an outstanding mathematician but he has been selected for Gold Book for helping to inspire good reading habits in class. Whenever he has a spare moment Euanson can be found with his head buried in a very thick and challenging book.  Many of the boys now follow his excellent example.

Lexia Legend is Kyron (33 units), and Sumdog Superstar is Susan (355 questions – 100% correct answers). We must make sure that we make the most of these online opportunities. The impact of regular Lexia usage is extraordinary. There has been a 66% increase in the number of children working at or above age group expectations in reading. Average progress in Maths measured by Sumdog is 10 months.

Giselle, Jessica, Andrea, Olaseni, Deacon, Stella, Rayhan and Ramtin have impressed but my choices for Learners of the Week are Arman and Hamza. Both of these boys bring positive energy to our classroom. They have shown that they are keen to learn and to make progress. Whenever they have found their work difficult, Arman and Hamza have demonstrated the vital learning skills of resilience and resourcefulness. They also completed their homework tasks.

All pupils were given just one piece of homework today. I am hoping that everyone will complete it and return it. Too many children still think that homework doesn’t matter. There are less than 400 school days left before they will be doing SATs.

Let’s try to make every day a good one.

Have a good weekend

Mr Moore

Friday 11th May

Hello everyone

We’ve had a very productive and positive week despite it being shorter than usual.

Thank you to Miss Linsley for taking the class to Alwoodley Tennis Club on Tuesday afternoon, and thank you to Miss Linsley again for telling me that everyone behaved brilliantly and had a great time.

I am really pleased by the progress of the extended Big Write that we started on Wednesday. The children wrote the first chapters of their Viking sagas. Jessica, Susan, Ramtin, Rhys, Kyron, Ronnie, Benjamin, Fatimah, Stella, Harley, Hamza, Euanson, Sonny and Singher have all made a heroic start to the tale. Their bold language, fearless sentence starters and their brave punctuation makes me think that they might be able will complete this quest. Next week I am sure that many other children will be added to the list of legendary storytellers.

I think that almost everyone has now mastered how to use coordinates to find a point on a numbered grid. Thanks to Euanson for his tips on how we can remember to find the x before the y coordinate. Go along the corridor then up the stairs.

Food chains were the theme for our Science lesson this week. We hit a stumbling block almost immediately when the children told me that they didn’t know what a chain was even though they could say how a chain might be used. Fortunately, I had a huge metal chain in my cupboard of everything so I was able to explain was a chain was in a practical way. Thank you to Arman for not complaining too much when I used the chain to make him my prisoner for a brief time.

Today I gave the children a really simple job. Each child had to hold a couple of chocolate buttons for me. It was a test of their patience, self-discipline, restraint and tolerance. Arman was the first to crack. After only a few minutes he could resist no longer and scoffed the chocolate. I think it was his revenge for chaining him up. Actually, the lesson was really a test of my forbearance. I too had to have patience, self-discipline, restraint and tolerance, mixed up with lots of forgiveness as no buttons were returned. Only Andrea, Singher and Evie Rae were successful in the challenge but sadly I didn’t get the chocolates back as they had melted them. Oh well. I think we all learned something.

Learners of the week are Guzal and Deacon. I have chosen Guzal for super listening skills, extra focus and excellent progress in Maths. Mrs. Cooper, Mrs. Bentley and I have all been very impressed by her determined and positive attitude. Deacon has been chosen for improved handwriting, for enjoying reading, for the effort he has put into all his work and for his politeness, kindness and gentleness.

The homework focus for English is the soft and hard ‘c’ sound, and in Maths the children should complete the page on coordinates. Spellings will be uploaded to Google Classroom on Sunday, and they will be printed on Monday. Well done to Liam for being a Homework Hero. He is always super keen to make sure he continues learning at home.

Have a great weekend

Mr. Moore

Friday 4th May

Hello everyone.

As I was successful in sneaking a bag of Mrs. Moore’s fabric out of the house and to school, we were able begin sewing our Viking purses. It turned out to be one of the most popular lessons of the week.  Everyone who had a go found it to be really enjoyable and therapeutic. Time seemed to slow down for a while, and we had more than just a moment to talk to each other and to think, share stories and to laugh a bit more.  Susan, Lubaya, Lilly Anna and Naza already have amazing skills but Deacon, Olaseni, Ronnie and Sonny will soon be experts too if they continue to work and sew so enthusiastically.

This week some children in my class have been quietly proving that they meant what they said when they promised to help serve others. Arman, Elyssa, Stella, Fatimah, Ramtin and Harley are just some of the children that have been taking on responsibilities without being asked.

The Science topic for this term is all about classifying animals. I asked the children to show me what they already knew. Some interesting ideas were put forward but it’s clear that we still have a lot to learn about mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, birds and insects.  Please encourage your child to do some research, and to develop some expertise on his or her favourite animal.

Y4 have completed their plans for the Viking sagas that they will write next week. We decided on a basic story, which the children have adapted and planned through making notes and by drawing a storyboard.  Sonny’s plan was immediately stuck on the working wall so that others can be inspired to aim high.

In our Maths No Problems lessons were have been revising what we know about fractions and learning some new skills. As well as converting improper fractions to proper fractions, we have been learning how to change a fraction to the decimal equivalent using the bus stop division method. The maths topic for next week is coordinates.

Spain are the most likely team to win the FIFA World Cup this year.  My class confirmed this when they made paella with Mrs. Walker this week.  It was an incredibly popular and wonderfully tasty dish and deservedly went through to the final stages of the competition. Don’t worry though, I’m sure that Yorkshire pudding and vegetarian gravy (England) will at least get through to the semi-finals.

The Learners of the Week are Sonny and Evie Rae.  I have chosen Evie Rae for consistent effort, her gentle nature gentle nature and also because she is just enjoying being young and she isn’t trying to grow up too quickly.  Plus she gained 31 Lexia units this week!  Sonny is chosen because of his passion for learning.  He has loved every task, and his focussed energy and high standard of work has been a great example to everyone.

Homework – pages on paragraphs in the English books, and revision of fractions from the Maths books (p32 and 33).  Spellings have been posted onto Google Classroom and I will print them out next week.

Next Tuesday afternoon, all Y4 children will be going to Alwoodley Tennis Cub for their PE lesson.  Please ensure that your child has PE kit, a hat, drinks and any medication that they might need.

Enjoy the long weekend.

Mr. Moore

PS I’ve just remembered that I always ask Mrs. Moore to proofread this blog.  I’m going to be in so much trouble.