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Y4 2015/16

Summer Term 2016

Welcome back, I hope everyone had a fantastic Easter holiday.

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                  Literacy Focus

This term the children will be introduced to a story which is set in Victorian times: Runaways! by Jim Eldridge. In this unit they will explore this historical setting and use it to immerse themselves in the story. The setting and period will then provide inspiration for their own writing.


In the non-fiction unit, the children will broaden their knowledge of the Victorian period by looking at journalistic texts that are typical of the period. They will learn about the features of newspaper articles and entries. Then they will write their own entry for a class newspaper set during the Victorian era.


Suggestions for wider reading




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                Geography Focus




This term we will learn about what a rainforest is and where in the world they can be located. We will find out about the climate and layers of vegetation. We will talk about deforestation and how this can impact upon people and places. We will learn about people who live in rainforests.  

                    Art Focus




This term we will be focussing on the artist Henri Rousseau. Henri Rousseau was born in France. He never had any art lessons and started painting when he was older. He never visited the jungle! He painted house plants and wild flowers for his jungle paintings and often looked at pictures in books.


He used very simple pure colours.

He had very clear outlines.

He filled jungle paintings with animals in the foreground and lush green plants in the background.

He painted leaves and grass piece by piece with clear outlines. He often painted huge over-sized flowers.





                Science Focus    




This term we will be focusing on  comparing and grouping materials together, according to whether they are solids, liquids or gases. We will observe that some materials change state when they are heated or cooled, and measure or research the temperature at which this happens in degrees Celsius      (◦ C). We will be identifying the part played by evaporation and condensation in the water cycle and associate the rate of evaporation with temperature. 


Spring Term 2016


Happy New Year! Mrs Colley and I hope that you all had a lovely Christmas holiday and that everyone is ready and eager to continue their Year 4 learning journey and achieve the best that they can.

Literacy Focus

This half term we will be reading 'The Bogey Men and the Trolls Next Door' by Kaye Umansky. It is a story told in rhyming narrative verse. We will be using drama and discussion to explore the humour in this engaging tale. We will pick out strands from the story to form the basis of the children's own writing.


Recommended Reading

In order to support and enhance our literacy work, we recommend these books as wider reading for the children in their spare time.


Trolls Go Home ( Troll Trouble) - Alan MacDonald

The Secret Book of Trolls - Danny Willis

Troll Wood - Kathryn Cave and Paul Hess

Jabberwocky and other Poems - Tig Thomas

Night of the Gargoyles - Eve Bunting and David Wiesner

Science Verse - Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith  



We are learning new vocabulary from the story. Please encourage your child to use these words with friends and family so that they can be embedded in your child's own spoken and written vocabulary.

fateful  - very important, often in a disastrous way

desolate - bleak and depressing

indignant - annoyed, outraged

destination  - place of arrival, journey's end


Listen to us perform this poem by clicking on the link below.

We made some troll sculptures using a variety of paper techniques.

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Merry Hill Bird House Story Competition

Year 4 let their imaginations run wild when they were invited to write a bird themed short story and design a front cover to accompany the Big Birdhouse tour that has flown into Merry Hill. The story challenge coincided with the tour which has seen 15 birdhouses land in the Merry Hill shopping centre to show shoppers why interacting with bird wild life is important and help to raise funds for the RSPB. The birdhouses were designed by celebrities including Rebecca Adlington. We took part in a prize presentation where the Mayor of Dudley attended to hear the winning stories performed by a professional story teller. Well done to everyone, all of your stories were truly amazing. The winning story in year 4 was written by Grace Harris.



Visit from Brierley Hill Fire Service

Brierley Hill Firefighters visited year 4 to talk about fire safety in the home. They talked about the importance of having smoke alarms and an escape plan. We watched video clips to spot fire hazards and recapped on making an emergency call to the fire service. We practised 'stop, drop and roll'so that if ever our clothes caught on fire we would know what to do.

Visit to the Ezone

We visited the Ezone to learn about classification of living things.  We had a busy day creating nature pictures, searching for minibeasts and also pond dipping.



This term Year 4 will study the Egyptians including the pyramids, the Rosetta Stone, hieroglyphs, wall art, the discovery of Tutankhamen's tomb, famous Egyptians, mummification and the importance of the Nile. Visit the library to see what you can find out about the Egyptians.  




This term the children will learn to describe the simple function of the basic parts of the digestive system in humans. They will look at different kinds of human teeth and understand their functions. They will plan, set up and report findings when investigating the effects of different drinks on teeth.


Autumn Term 2015

Welcome back everyone. Year 4 have had a fantastic first week and have settled into their new class wonderfully. Working in Year 4 are Mrs Humphreys and Mrs Colley. Mrs Colley and I have commented how super smart everyone looks in their new school uniforms. 

English - Fiction Focus 

Our first unit explores the themes of relationships, suspicion and trust. We have been reading a special new story 'Lost or Stolen?' in which one of the characters faces a dilemma. Ask your child if they can explain what the word dilemma means. We have needed to find out some facts about a Hindu festival called Raksha Bandhan. This festival is important in our new story. Please ask your child if they can tell you all about this celebration. 


Word Power!

We are learning new vocabulary from the story. Please encourage your child to use these words with friends and family so that they become embedded in your child's own spoken and written vocabulary.   

incessantly - non-stop, constantly

exasperated  - frustrated, irritated

despondent  - downhearted, glum

trepidation  - nervousness, anxiety


Special Phrases 

In our literacy work we are also becoming familiar with special phrases which we will be able to use in our own writing. The special phrases we are thinking about use similes to create powerful images. Similes compare different things. They usually use the words 'like' or 'as'. Here are a few examples  -My mum is busy as a bee. The boy can swim like a fish. Encourage your child to create some examples of their own.  


Why is a story like a roller coaster?

Ask your child to explain why.


Wider Reading

Here a few suggestions for fiction stories which have a dilemma to solve. 








In Year 4 it is extremely important that your child knows all of their times tables by the end of this year. Practise these facts as often as possible. Your child should answer just like they say their name.



In science we will be learning all about Electricity. The children have already thought about electrical safety and have made some simple circuits. We will be making switches and identifying common conductors and insulators. 


Our History focus is based on the Romans. We have already thought of lots of questions we would like to answer. Here are just a few ...

Where did the Romans come from?

Where and how did the Roman army train?

Who was the leader of the Romans?

Did the Romans play musical instruments?

What did the Romans do in their spare time?



Important Messages

P.E. will be every Monday. A big thank you to all parents who have provided their child with a new P.E. kit for this term.


Planners and Homework

Planners will be sent home every Friday. These are a valuable tool for parent/school communication. Please take the time to read and fill in your child's planner every week.

Homework will be given out every Tuesday. This homework will need to be handed in on Friday.