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St Thomas' CE Primary Academy

Term 3- Boston UK, Boston USA: How are they linked?

This term we have as always, lots of exciting and fun learning to look forward to. As well as our Geographical focus based on the link between the two Bostons, in Science we will be building on our previous learning about materials, reversible and irreversible reactions and separating substances - there are lots of practical experiments in store! 


In English, we begin with persuasive writing, learning all the techniques used in travel brochures to draw the reader in and persuade them to spend their money on a holiday. We will then create our own leaflet to show we can apply these techniques ourselves. 


Keep checking this page, as it will be regularly updated with pictures of all the learning taking place this term.  


Friday 7th February - a visitor!


We love having visitors come in to talk to us, so we were very grateful when Mr Cowell, who works at the docks in Boston, agreed to come in to tell us more about what goes on there. We have been learning about the history of the docks, and we know it is because of the trade conducted through here in the past that at one time, Boston was second only to London in importance and wealth. Some children were very much under the impression that those days were over. Therefore, it was great to have someone knowledgeable come in to tell us this is not the case! The winding nature of the river, silting and the increase in size of ships saw a decline in the use of the docks here, but they are still a vital part of Boston's (and England's) economy. We were fascinated by the pictures, past and present, of different ships, cranes and cargo. Thank you very much Mr Cowell (Dan)! 


Reading morning - Friday 7th February


Thank you to all the parents who joined us this morning, we all had fun reading! We explored travel brochures, pointing out all the persuasive techniques that we are now au fait with, as well as deciding where we might like to go on holiday. Some of us had comprehension cards and worked in pairs to complete as many as possible. Others simply enjoyed the time to quietly enjoy our own books. Our favourite was learning to play scrabble and wordsearch with the grown ups! 


Thursday 6th February

In Science this week, we have investigated insulators and conductors. We used low voltage electrical circuits to identify which materials were effective conductors and insulators. We had to carefully reason and explain this weeks big question to show our developed scientific knowledge and enquiry skills. 


During our learning abou salvation we investigated Eucharist and Communion and what we believe are the most important parts of the services. In pairs and small groups, we researched and planned an alternative service although we kept many parts the same. 

Finally, we presented our ideas to the rest of the class. 


Wednesday 5th February


This week is Mental Health Awareness week, and knowing the importance of this, we wanted to join in with the campaign 'Find your brave'. We had discussions over the week, about what kind of things might happen that require you to be brave. Sometimes these are things you can't deal with by yourself and then you might need to ask for help. That asking for help might need you to 'find your brave' was not something many children had thought about, while some thought asking for help was a sign of weakness. Therefore the conversations we had were helpful and very worthwhile.

Everyone created their own cartoon superhero, giving them superpowers and qualities to help them be brave. 


Tuesday 4th February


We are having so much fun in this storytelling week! After putting actions to the story and creating a text map, in small groups we acted out different sections of the story Rumpelstiltskin. By performing the sections in order, we put on the whole story as a play. Then in our groups, we wrote our own section as a playscript, so again when we put all the pieces together, we had a complete script. 

Thursday 30th January - walk into Boston


We were excited about going into Boston, looking at familiar sights with fresh eyes. Our focus was to look for Human Geography features so we noted the different types of housing, land and property uses, and how people have used the river, including the docks, over time. We recorded data using tallies and compared the different types of shops on one street. While heading to the Stump for a well deserved snack and rest, we noticed the memorials and information about the Pilgrims. This brought our prior learning in the classroom to life as we saw how important Boston's heritage is - local people were some of the first to go the brave New World.  

Thursday 23rd January

After a lot of researching, we have started to use our notes to develop persuasive paragraphs about Boston USA. These are our first draft, however an amazing effort from 5F!


There was lots of discussion as we decided how to set up a fair test investigation. We were challenged to find out which material has the best thermal insulating properties, in order to determine the best to use for a lunch box lining. In small groups we experimented by wrapping ice cubes in foil (metal so a thermal conductor - no good for a lunch box lining!); cotton wool (the most effective - ice cubes melted very slowly inside these coats); fabric (not as effective as cotton wool but better than foil). For comparison each group had a control - an ice cube with nothing around it.





Monday 27th January


Everyone progressed this week, to be able to program their own maze game. By experimenting with the code, they checked the effect of the algorithms as they were created to devise the maze.


Weds 15.01.20

Young Leaders Award 

Our adventures with Archie continue as many children have already completed one (some even more!) of the personal challenges on the grid. There was much excitement when the children were given their own Archie scrapbook to record their leadership journey, and they immediately set about personalising them. Evidence is needed for each challenge the children do, so parents please support them in this by taking photographs that can be added to these special books.


Wednesday 15th January

We started our learning about multiplication this week with a practical session, using dice to create 4 digit numbers and multiplying them by a one digit number. Working in pairs on place value grids, we were all able to succeed in this.


Our scientific understanding developed as we tested various materials for their properties. First we had to devise appropriate tests for hardness, transparency, magnetism and flexibility. In small groups we then carried out these tests and recorded our findings in a table.




Tuesday 14.01.20

We enjoyed our practical approach to embedded relative clauses in English this week. We visited stations around the classroom, and completed different activities applying our knowledge and understanding of this grammar focus. 



Monday 13.01.20

Computing this term focuses on programming and algorithms. Exploring Scratch and choosing characters and backdrops before working out how to code instructions really got our brains into problem solving mode!


Year 5 are so excited about swimming, it is lovely to see such enthusiasm! The children have made us proud, making progress within each lesson and growing in confidence each time they go. 



In RE we are considering the question 'How did Jesus save human beings?'. As part of this, we are focusing on the Incarnation and the Salvation. The children were able to sequence events leading up to Jesus' death on a timeline, and through freeze framing in small groups, demonstrated their understanding by portraying parts of the story for the rest of the class to interpret.




Our first Science lesson involved feely bags, which engaged everyone immediately! Children worked in groups to feel an object inside the bag and use scientific terms for properties of materials to describe what they felt to their team. Our next step will be to test the properties of materials to see how that helps determine their uses...


Our reading corner for this term has been set up, and children are enjoying the opportunity to sit together and discuss books here. We love the idea of entering a whole new world (Hogwarts here we come!) just by opening a book. Our current focus on travel brochures is helping this idea in a real world way!