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Chestnut Class (Year 5)

Spring 1 – Walk Like An Egyptian


This half-term, Year 5 have been learning about the Ancient Egyptians as part of their topic ‘Walk Like an Egyptian.’ During the half term, the children have been able to take on the role of Howard Carter and became archaeologists in the classroom where they had to sketch and investigate the treasures inside his tomb. A wonderful visit to Highclere Castle followed, where the children were able to deepen their learning about Howard Carter's expedition and see artefacts from Lord Carnarvon's family's exhibition. This visit helped Year 5 write their own Howard Carter diary entry on the day that he discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb using 1922 style language.


Within our class guided reading sessions (blended reading) we have focused on the book ‘Secrets of a Sun King’ written by Emma Carroll and it has been lovely to see how enthused and engaged they have been with the Egyptian themed narrative. Some children even bought a personal copy of the book as they were eager to find out what happened next.


Within Art, the children have had the opportunity to make their own canopic jar out of clay and they have painted these with intricate Egyptian designs ready for transportation of organs to the afterlife – should they pass the final judgement of Osiris (the God of the underworld).


Within History we have been following a line of enquiry which sought to understand why tombs were so important to Ancient Egyptians. By doing this, the children studied the complex mummification process and even performed this procedure upon their own doll or Barbie! The children had a lot of fun and followed the steps with great precision, including hooking the brain out of the nose!!


In their Maths sessions, the children have been reading and interpreting different representations of data, learning about the conversions of measures and continued to revise the four operations. To top this all off, the children composed their own Egyptian style dances and performed these in front of their classmates.


Next half term we will be looking at life in the Amazon Rainforest in our topic ‘Walk on the Wildside’. We have a number of visitors lined up to meet the children, many of whom might have more than two legs!!

Autumn 2 – Celebrations and Festivals


Year 5 have had a fantastic half term learning about the different celebrations and festivals observed across the world during their topic, for example: Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Remembrance Day and Bonfire Night. The children have also had the opportunity to research and present information about a celebration of their choice based on family heritage and personal preference. The children have been able to gain a wider understanding and a new appreciation of some of the differences and similarities between diverse cultures and religions. The children used their new knowledge to create non-chronological reports about Hanukkah, Remembrance Day letters and wonderful bonfire descriptions.


In Maths, the children have been securing their knowledge of the four operations and learning how to apply these methods within a variety of word problems. They have also at adding and subtracting fractions, equivalent fractions, percentages and decimals, as well as how to use place value to multiply and divide by 10, 100, 1000. 


In History we have been learning about the heritage of different celebrations, with a focus on how Christmas traditions have changed over time. In Science the children have been looking at how light travels in straight lines. They have even planned and conducted their own light experiments, thinking about how to record their results accurately. In PE, the children have grown in confidence with their hockey skills, despite some bad weather! We would like to thank Mr Watton, a qualified hockey coach, for helping the children to build on their previous skills from Year 4 and helping them apply these skills to game scenarios.


After Christmas we will be looking at Ancient Egypt in our topic ‘Walk Like an Egyptian’. We will learn about the mummification process, study the infamous Tutankhamun and visit the incredible exhibition at Highclere Castle.   

Autumn 1 – ‘Ooh La La’


This half term the children have been learning all about the different aspects of French culture through our ‘Ooh La La!’ topic.


During our Literacy lessons, we have written a description of a walk through Paris, instructions about how to make a Croque Monsieur and Paris travel brochures which are being displayed in Toucan Travel in Chineham. As well as this, our Maths lessons have involved solving lots of French word problems linking money with the four operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. We have delved deeper into the importance of place value within our calculations and also looked at calculating missing angles.


During our Art lessons, we completed an artist study of Claude Monet and tried to replicate his famous ‘Water Lily Pond’ painting. The children loved focusing on the different tones that he used within his painting and tried hard to use the tache technique to create a similar effect within their own artwork. The children have also learnt plenty of new French vocabulary throughout the topic whilst being able to grasp simple conversations about our hobbies, family and school.


To conclude our wonderful topic, the children became food connoisseurs by visiting a French Café. They tasted a variety of traditional French foods including: pain au chocolat, quiche Lorraine, crème caramel, brie and wine (grape juice!). The children were brilliant at trying the good they hadn’t tasted before and being honest with their descriptions of the food.


Next half term we will be focusing on different celebrations and festivals from around the world on the lead up to Christmas. The children will learn all about Bonfire Night, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Remembrance Day.


Welcome to Chestnut Class 2019-2020


Welcome back! We hope you all had a great summer holiday; we can’t believe how quickly it went. The children have settled back into school quickly and have enjoyed the learning opportunities that Year 5 has to offer – they are definitely rising to the challenge of being in the upper school. This week, the children have taken part in a variety of literacy, maths, art, topic and PE lessons and are already been very curious about our new topic, Ooh La La.


We have some exciting learning coming up such as an artist study of Claude Monet, exploring the diverse geography of the French landscape, increasing their French vocabulary and most importantly…tasting French cuisine.


For your information, our outdoor PE sessions will be held on a Tuesday and our indoor PE will be on a Friday. However, PE kits must be in school every day just in case these days change or we have visitors.