Spotlight on: Year 5 & Year 6
Our Year 5 and Year 6 teachers on their year group's activities this term
Year 5 – Miss Agata Wygnanska and Miss Edie Stewart
Year 5 has had a very exciting start to the year! Most of the girls’ learning has centred around Mediaeval England and Renaissance Italy. They have explored the depths of Sherwood Forest, searching for Robin Hood and his band of Merry Men; investigated the many inventions of Leonardo da Vinci and looked at how the Renaissance sparked the Scientific Revolution. This has also been a great springboard to the next topic: Space. After half term, the girls will also continue to look at key historical figures, such as Galileo and Copernicus.
Year 6 – Mrs Sarah Cliff, Ms Jane Freebairn and Mrs Susan Mackay
Some of the highlights outside of the classroom include visits to: The Centre for Computing History, All Saints Church and a visit to the Gunpowder Mills.
The first allowed the girls to learn more about the history of computing, and of course, see the advances women have made in this area. How many of you remember the old BBC machines? The girls enjoyed coding on these and creating Morse code messages.
The remaining two visits allowed the girls to tie in their classroom learning of the Victorians with some practical work. The trip to All Saints Church was an opportunity for the girls to see the beautiful and historic church with the William Morris décor. The girls, eager to show their learning in the classroom, were quick to put their hands up to answer questions set by our wonderful guide. Once they had had time to answer and ask questions, they set about on a rotation of activities: writing poetry, searching for clues around the church and stamp making. It certainly was a breath-taking afternoon.
The topic this half term has been all about adaptation and evolution, and the girls have certainly enjoyed their learning. They have been creating new animals, especially adapted to specific environments, and have learnt how to extract DNA from strawberries and also about cladograms. The strawberry extraction was particularly interesting. With goggles on and a 'secret' extraction solution in place, the girls learnt about and discussed ways of extracting DNA. The classrooms certainly had a fruity smell but thankfully the experiments were successful and DNA was extracted.
The girls have been appreciating the work of Oscar Wilde and Charles Dickens. They have looked at Oliver Twist in depth this half term, and have honed in on their creative writing skills too, developing some fabulous stories with powerful vocabulary and excellent turns of phrase. Recently they looked at answering questions in detail: making a point, evidencing it and then explaining. As the year progresses, this will become a focal point to their learning.