Years 5 and 6

Year 5

Our learning during the Autumn Term will have an overarching theme of Mental Wellbeing, and will be based around our core texts: ‘Boy in the Tower’ by Polly Ho-Yen and Breadwinner’ by Deborah Ellis. We will use these inspiring novels to explore various areas of the curriculum and the global learning goals in an exciting and creative way, giving our pupils opportunities to grow and develop via relatable experiences that will allow them to reflect on their own mental wellbeing and how their current decisions can impact their future.

Over the first half term in English, we will be developing our fictional writing. As we read our core text, ‘Boy in the Tower’, we will be building an awareness of the characters, the relationships they create and the choices they make by writing a narrative, based on key events in the story. We will be looking at how figurative language and sentence structure have an effect on a reader. During the second half term, we will be learning the skills required to write a split narrative perspective from two main character’s points of view.

In Maths, we are focusing on developing our understanding of place value, addition and subtraction. We will then apply our knowledge of these methods to solve a range of real-life problems. In the second half of the Autumn term, we will continue our learning of the four operations by moving on to multiplication and division before moving on to statistics, area and perimeter.

In Science, we will focus on the topic: ‘Properties of Materials’. We will be sorting and classifying everyday objects based on their properties. We will be conducting lots of experiments to investigate reversible and irreversible changes, and which solids and liquids will create a solution. We will be building towards applying our learning when carrying out a scientific enquiry in order to plan a comparative test and explain and present results in a clear way.

In Art, we will be focusing on the work of Colin Ruffell; we will explore his approach to landscapes to create our own tower blocks. The children will consider mark making and observational drawings, linking closely to our core text. Linking to our core text in Autumn 2, children will be exploring portraits through the use of various media.

This half term year 5 will be split to complete two different projects. Half of the year group will be participating in the Shakespeare School Festival. They will be performing Macbeth at Greenwich theatre just after half term. The other half of the year group will be holding an open day to build awareness of positive mental health through various activities.  

In Year Five, pupils are able to change their reading book each week.  Parents can support their child's learning through reading and discussing the books daily, and by giving children the opportunity to visit the local library to read about and research our topics.  

In line with the weekly theme, there is regular homework, which consists of Maths and English tasks, and occasional project work linked to our topic.  We welcome parental involvement in the life of our school. If you are able to visit the school or help in any way, please contact your child’s class teacher.

Year 6

At Woodhill Primary School, we ensure that learning is planned for in a cross-curricular way, this ensures that children are able to make links within their learning and away from school. Lessons challenge all pupils through a variety of activities, providing opportunities for feedback from adults and peers. Through high expectations of everyone at Woodhill we aspire to achieve outstanding outcomes. During the Autumn Term, Year 6’s learning will be based on our core texts: ‘Wonder’ by R.J Palacio, and ‘Pig Heart Boy’ by Malorie Blackman. We will be using these enriching texts to explore individuality, identity and diversity, reflecting on how everyone is different we should embrace and celebrate our unique qualities. Through these texts, we will be challenging our pupils in a variety of ways, through problem solving, reasoning and hands on learning that will result in high-quality learning outcomes.

Over the first part of this term, children will continue to develop their fictional writing style as they write past-tense narratives in role of Julian – a character encountered in Wonder. They will learn to empathise with characters in the novel, such as Auggie, who has learnt to cope with growing up having a facial disfigurement, before applying this to their own narratives and building upon their writer’s voice. Children will learn how to include a balance of dialogue and description to create imagery for the reader whilst also moving the plot forward. They will also be exposed to techniques that will allow them to switch appropriately between levels of formality; these include the use of technical vocabulary and ‘slang’. In the second part of the term, children will be writing in role of alternative characters from the text: ‘Wonder’, as they write a letter to an agony aunt discussing their worries and fears. Children will then switch their writer’s voice to create a thoughtful response from the agony aunt, offering advice and empathy. We will use both writing opportunities to develop the children’s voice as a writer and awareness of their audience, whilst simultaneously weaving in principles of sentence structures, spelling, punctuation and grammar.

In Maths, children will revise and extend their knowledge of place value, and how this relationship between numbers underpins all of mathematics. We will re-cap the four main operations in a range of contexts and problems whilst children will still be encouraged to explain their reasoning and thought-processes when solving them. Alongside extending their proficiency of using known calculation methods to aid their problem solving, the children will be exposed to new procedures, such as long division to calculate with increasingly large numbers, including decimals.

In Science, children will be exploring the topics ‘Light’ and ‘Animal including humans’. We will be creating our own investigation about how light changes throughout the day and children will be encouraged to work scientifically as they plan, carry out and evaluate these investigations.  The children will learn about inheritance and how it can create characteristics in animals that are classifiable.  They will be using their knowledge of classification to follow and create dichotomous keys and look at how physical traits can be exaggerated over time.

In lead up to SATs in the summer term, daily sessions will be spent sharpening our calculation skills through explicit arithmetic sessions, focusing on the four operations and fractions, decimals and percentages. Similarly, we will focus on developing our knowledge of key grammatical rules and terminology through engaging grammar sessions that will link closely with our learning in English. Children will continue to practice their French in class by learning how to have basic conversations, relating to their day-to-day routines.

In Year 6, pupils are able to change their reading book once a week.  Parents can support their children's learning through reading and discussing the books daily, and by giving children the opportunity to visit the local library to read about and research our topics.  Please encourage your child to be reading for 30 minutes every night and to record their comments in their reading journals. We welcome parental involvement in the life of our school. If you are able to visit the school or help in any way, please contact your child’s class teacher.