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									                                          Year 4 Newsletter – Autumn Term 2010

Dear Parents

May we take this opportunity of welcoming you and your children to Year 4. We are often asked for ideas as to
how you can develop your children’s school work at home. There are many ways you can do this and you don’t
have to be an expert! The best way is through talking and finding out together. Asking your children about the
lessons they have done that day and getting them to explain some of the things they have learnt is an excellent
way to start.
Literacy            Your children are continuing their Literacy studies, which concentrate on the teaching of reading and
                    writing skills. This term we are looking at stories for other cultures, stories with historical settings,
                    information texts, stories with issues and dilemmas, persuasive texts and creating images.

Numeracy            Within Numeracy, we will continue beginning each lesson by introducing and practicing mental maths
                    strategies. The topics we are covering this term include addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
                    It is important for your children to continue to learn their times tables from 2-12 and number bonds to 10,
                    20 and 100. Throughout the junior school we look to increase the speed at which they recall these facts.
                    Can we emphasise that times tables need to be known as facts rather than calculated! The children will
                    be doing times table test every week and need to practise these regularly.
Science             This half term, our Science topic is The Human Body. We will be looking at the skeleton, muscles and
                    the main body organs. Next half term our topic changes to Keeping Warm focussing on temperature
                    and insulation. Any books or information that you have at home on these topics will greatly increase your
                    child’s understanding.

ICT                 During this term we will be using the computer suite to concentrate on developing a variety of skills
                    using the following software: Dazzle Plus and Word. The children will be using I.C.T to produce written
                    work, and it would be extremely helpful if they knew the location of the keys on the keyboard. We would
                    welcome the opportunity to see the sort of things that children are producing on their home computers.
ART                 The children will be looking at machines, carrying out observational drawings and focussing on printing
                    techniques linked to our Victorians project.

MUSIC               In Music this term we will be exploring descriptive sounds linked to machinery and the use of rhythm in
RE                  The focus this term is Judaism. Children will gain an insight into the beliefs and the customs of Jewish
PE & Games          This term the children will be attending Clarendon Swimming Pool on Monday mornings. A letter with
                    further information will be sent out. Any child who has an inhaler must bring it to the swimming
                    We will also be having a Games lesson during the week on Thursday afternoon.
                    Games kits must consist of a dark blue/ black plain tracksuit or shorts and a plain white T-Shirt.
                    Unfortunately if your child brings in any clothing that does not conform to these rules, they will not be
                    able to take part actively in the lesson. Their Games kit must be brought in a draw-string bag, small
                    enough to hang on their peg.

SEAL                Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning. This term we will be looking at New Beginnings and

Spanish             Year 4 pupils continue with their study of the Spanish language with Mr. Harrison for thirty minutes once
                    a week. New topics for Year 4 include: sports, travel, toys plus revision of topics from last year.

History             We will be looking at who the Victorians were, how they lived and how they have influenced the present.
PHSE                  This term we are focusing on health and water safety linked to swimming. We are also covering the topic
                      of ‘self’, specifically emotions, family and friendships.
Snacks                Children use up a lot of energy during the school day, and we would encourage them to have a snack at
and                   morning break to help them through until lunchtime. As Light Oaks Junior School is a Healthy School,
                      could you please provide only fresh fruit or vegetables for their snack. Water is also important to help
Drinks                the brain work efficiently, so your child should bring in to school their water bottle filled with water only to
                      keep on their table so they can have a drink through the day.

                                                  Ideas to Help Your Child

Reading               Regular home reading is absolutely essential and will be part of the children’s daily homework. This will
                      checked regularly by the class teacher and recorded. This practise helps improve their fluency,
                      expression and also feeds back into their written work, fuelling their imagination and helping with
                      spelling and punctuation. We would refer you to the reading record book. This is full of advice and
                      activities that you could follow.

Maths                 As with all areas of the curriculum, any help you could give at home will only help to encourage your
                      child and boost their confidence – especially with numbers! We are particularly keen that children know
                      their times tables up to 12 x 12. If you keep throwing random tables questions at them, they will soon
                      learn them – especially if it is in the middle of their favourite TV program!
                      It is also very useful to encourage them to use and practice their maths skills in everyday situations –
                      ask them to tell you the time; to add up the cost of a couple of items when you are out shopping or to
                      weigh some vegetables in the scales at the supermarket. You could even get them to work out how
                      much paint you need when you next decorate! Showing children maths in everyday contexts can really
                      help children to recognise the importance of maths as a basic life skill!
Spanish               Year 4 pupils continue with their study of the Spanish language with Mr. Harrison for thirty minutes once
                      a week. New topics for Year 4 include: sports, travel, toys plus revision of topics from last year.

Homework              In our school we believe that there is an enormous advantage in children spending regular periods of
                      time on homework, which supports the work they do in class. Hopefully this will develop the skills and
                      attitudes the children will need for successful, independent lifelong learning.
                      Homework will be given on a weekly basis, as in year 3. Each half term your child will bring home a list
                      of spellings and told which tables to practice for a test each week. There will be one other piece of
                      homework to consolidate learning in a range of curriculum subjects. A vital element of the homework
                      programme is reading and discussing their text. Your child should be doing this everyday. The
                      homework programme is an important part of the partnership between home and school and as always
                      we will rely on your continuing support and involvement to ensure its effectiveness. It is important that
                      you as parents/carers support and encourage your child to do their best with their homework tasks in
                      terms of content and presentation. We are asking that you sign each piece of homework to show you
                      have seen it, and are satisfied with the standard.
Independent           Please try to encourage your child to research any topic that we are covering in class. We are always
Work                  pleased to see any work that the children have done themselves on any topic they have become
                      interested in. Please encourage them to share their interests and any achievements with the class, no
                      matter whether they are academic interests or not.
                               A useful website:
As we have now entered the Autumn Term, due to the unpredictability of the weather, please ensure that your child always
brings a suitable coat to school. A waterproof with a hood would be ideal.

If you have any questions or need to talk to us about your child, please come in and see us. We are always
willing to discuss your child, or use their homework book to send written messages if you prefer!
Yours sincerely
The Year 4 Teaching Team:
Mrs Mitchell 4Z     Miss Pichon
Miss Penneyl 4Y     Mrs Walker (Nee Miss Mullin)
Miss Schiff   4X

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