Year 6 - Birch & Lime
Welcome to Year 6!
18 December 2020
UN Climate Council
We have been extremely busy recently in Year 6 as we prepare to speak to the Chief Scientists at the UN Climate Council this Thursday. It started with an expected letter from the Secretary General, calling on us as biome experts to help convince the Chief Scientists that the biomes of the Earth need protecting. We’ve been working hard to include the most important information in a short time slot, and have been using infographics and split biome art work to make the presentation both interesting and informative. We are informed that the Chief Scientists will be donning their finest lab coats to attend the conference in the school hall, but it will take a lot to convince them to help save the biomes of planet Earth!
As we approach the end of a long and unprecedented term, everyone in the Year 6 team want to commend the children for all their hard work, and thank you all for your continued support!
4 December 2020
Recently, in Year 6, we have been learning about Evolution. First, we visited ‘Clippy Island’, and investigated how natural variation in beak size meant that some ‘Clippies’ were better adapted to their habitat than others. This meant that over four ‘seasons’ some populations managed to survive and reproduce, whilst others went extinct! There were so many small ‘Clippies’ by the end, some children had the job of feeding three or four at a time! We then related this to Darwin’s observations of the finches on the Galapagos Islands, and read the story of the peppered moths. Why not ask your children to explain what happened to the peppered moths and how this explains natural selection?
We’ve also investigated inheritance by designing brand new Mr Men and Little Miss characters who are the children of the well-known cartoons. We discussed how children inherit 50% of their characteristics from each of their biological parents, and discussed what we have inherited from our parents.
Finally, we have had the exciting opportunity to use the new Chromebooks for the first time. They have been helping us with our research and blog writing, and to prepare for our end of term topic finale!
Our learning, particularly in science, has been quite complex this week, and we have been proud of how the children have worked hard to grasp these tricky concepts!
13 November 2020
Bishop’s Stortford Foodbank
During Arts Week, Year 6 focused on foodbanks. Our week started with a visit from Jane Towns, a volunteer from the Bishop’s Stortford foodbank. Jane answered many of our questions, including how and why people access the foodbank, and what we can do to help. Inspired by this visit, throughout the week, we composed our own poetry which explored themes related to the foodbank. We also managed to put a twist on our harvest artwork, creating cauliflowers from a combination of quilled paper and receipts (thank you for the donations!).
This week we have begun our new topic- ‘Island Guardians’. We were impressed with the children’s mature response to our topic hook- David Attenborough’s ‘A Life On Our Planet’. Leading on from this, we will be looking in more details at the impact humans are having on the Earth, and how we can make a difference to stop it!
23 October 2020
Desert Island Escape
Finally, Year 6 have almost escaped our deserted island! We are hoping to catch the attention of a passing plane or boat to come to our rescue, and have therefore been learning semaphore. We put our skills to the test on the field, using flags to pass messages to each other. We mostly managed to decode the words, but some were foiled by the classic 'semaphore ache' in their arms at having to hold their flags up for so long!
Besides this, we have been arguing a lot in class this week, but, don't panic: we have been doing this in the form of our persuasive writing. After reading Armin Greder's The Island, we received a shocking letter from the Governor of said island, who tried to persuade us to banish the stranger who had been washed up on the shore. Appalled and dismayed, we are in the process of replying to the governor to try and convince him to let this poor stranger stay!
We appreciate this has been a long half term, and the children have certainly earnt their half term break. We are all looking forward to starting fresh after a week off and can't wait to get stuck in to our next topic. Thank you for all your support over the past eight weeks and we hope you have a restful half term.
9 October 2020
We have been continuing our survival efforts in Year 6 recently, including measuring the success of our food preservation experiment, and working out how to filter dirty water using the items that we washed up with. We battled through the stench to evaluate which method was the most successful at preserving food, and which food preserved the most successfully; not that any of the food looked that appetising at the end of the week!
In a similar vein, we might be going thirsty on the island as we struggled to produce more than a teaspoon of clear-ish water from the muddy swamp water we gathered. The most successful groups used strips of fabrics to repeatedly and painstakingly filter the water, but we found much of it ended up getting absorbed! We were really impressed by the reliance of the children and the methodical approach they adopted throughout.
Elsewhere, we have been equally impressed by the children’s efforts in their maths and English work, and have particularly enjoyed reading their written work for their survival stories.
25 September 2020
Surviving in Six
Recently in Year 6, we have taken some essential steps to ensure our survival on our deserted island! First, we were visited by Robbie- a fist aid instructor. He taught us the key principles of first aid, including the primary survey, the secondary survey, how to perform CPR, and the recovery position. Please do ask the children to tell you what they know! We would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your contributions which made this event possible.
We have also been investigating how we will preserve our food on the island. With few resources, we’ve had to be inventive! We now look forward to observing the changes in our food over the coming week and establishing which method is most effective and which food preserves most successfully. However, we are less excited by the thought of the inevitable stench!
We are proud of the children for maintaining their positivity and engagement in our learning over the past couple of weeks. We are now looking forward to continuing our efforts for survival.
11 September 2020
Disaster has struck in Year 6 as our boat struck a rock off the coast of a deserted island and we have been washed to shore! With only room for five items, we have had to negotiate with our team members to ensure we have the right items to survive, and over this half term, we will learn new skills to keep us safe and alive, and ultimately help us escape the island!
We have also really enjoyed listening to stories of survival to inspire our efforts and future writing, which have both entertained and horrified us, alongside our class novel which has been much more relaxing!
All the children in Year 6 have enjoyed the opportunity to work across both classes, especially in our topic work, where we have formed survival teams of six including children from both classes.
All the adults in Year 6 have been impressed by the mature attitude of the children on their return to school. They have adapted to the changes in routine brilliantly, and are setting a great example to others in the school. What a great start to the year!