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St Alban's Catholic Academy

St Alban's

Catholic Academy

First Avenue, Harlow, Essex, CM20 2NP

Through God’s love we learn together, grow together and achieve together.

This term, our topic is Magnificent Machines!  

Our Science focus is on magnets and electricity.  The children will identify the forces acting on objects and conduct a fair test into how the type of surface on the table affects the speed of a toy car travelling on it. We will explore magnets, including the materials that are attracted to a magnet and magnetic poles as well as how magnetic forces can act at a distance. We will learn about some inventions that have shaped the world and come up with an invention of our own that can help to build a community of peace. In their learning about electricity, children will identify common appliances that run on electricity, learn to construct a simple series electrical circuit and explore conductors and insulators. Finally, the children will put all their learning about electricity into practise by designing and making their own torch for explorers. 

In English, we will be covering many different genres. This half term, we start with free verse poetry in which the children will create their own free verse poems about robots, using alliteration and onomatopoeia, inspired by the poem The Magic Box by Kit Wright. Next, we move on to explanation texts when the children will learn how to write their own explanations of how to use a Teacher-Pleaser machine as well as a Tidy your room machine. We will be using the book Runaway Robot by Frank Cottrell-Boyce to help the children learn about adventure stories. Our Guided Reading book for the term is The Wild Robot by Peter Brown. This is a great book which focuses on the themes of friendship and family as well as the environment and technology.  

In Maths, we will continue to revisit all of the areas that we have learnt already this year 3. We will work on securing understanding of addition and subtraction and rehearsing sound mental strategies, extending to adding and subtracting fractions. We will be developing understanding and skills in multiplication and division, including using tables facts to solve scaling problems, multiplications using the grid method, and divisions using chunking. Children will be learning to draw and interpret pictograms and bar graphs with different scales and using these to record and analyse data in the context of measuring weights. We will be developing understanding and vocabulary of shape and angle, including measuring perimeters; and on telling the time 5, 10, 20 minutes later using am/pm and 24-hour clock. We will consolidating written multiplication and division strategies, securing understanding of the relation between division and fractions, and moving to finding tenths of amounts.

In RE, our topics for the term are Energy, Choices and Special places.  

In DT the children will learn all about mechanical systems and will create their own moving robot using levers.

In Art, the children will be using robot shapes to help learn about block printing. They will also be creating monoprints inspired by the work of Eric Joyner. 

In Music, we will continue using glockenspiels to support our learning of notation and rhythm. 

Excitingly, this term the children will also be having a French lesson once a week. 

In PE, the children start the Summer term by learning skills to play rapid-fire cricket. 

Home learning

We continue to provide home learning for your children to build their knowledge and understanding of our main topic areas. Please see below for home learning relating to this term's topic of Magnificent Machines. 

We will continue to have peer-assessed weekly spelling quizzes every Thursday to practise the children's knowledge of Year 3 and 4 words as well as to consolidate knowledge of spelling rules and Year 2 spellings. Please encourage your child to practise these spellings each week. The weekly spellings are attached below.  In this document, we have also suggested a times table focus for you to practise each week. 

Thank you for your continued support with your children's learning. We're going to have a fantastic term!