Our take on the Movie Magic theme for this year's STEM Week was to make our own movies! We began by watching some old Aardman Animations productions like Morph and Creature Comforts. Using an app called iMotion on the iPads, we all tried a few different techniques for making animations: using inanimate objects, plasticine and finally drawing on a white board. The children then spent some time storyboarding their ideas and were given free rein to make whatever animations they wanted. Take a look at the video below which brings together the amazing, creative animations that all the groups produced. If you're squeamish about cruelty to plasticine, you may want to look away at a few points!
All the children, from Year 2 up to Year 6, entered the UK Bebras challenge this week. This is a national online computational thinking competition. The children had to solve a number of tricky logical thinking problems in 40 minutes. Children achieving a score in the top 10 percent nationaly will be invited to enter the Oxford University Computing Challenge. You can try some of the previous year's questions here: UK Bebras
To support last term's Science learning about Earth and Space, Year 6 did our VR experience about space. It was amazing to feel like we were zooming through the solar system to get a close up look at all the planets and many of their moons.
The ended the term by turning the classroom into a racetrack! The children used the Bluetooth connections between micro:bits to code one micro:bit to send signals to a second micro:bit in the robots. Those signals could then trigger the different motors in the robots. The children all coded their own team's robots and controllers, so some were set to different speeds, and had different control designs for turning and manoeuvring. Next we raced them in pairs and timed the winning robots in each heat. The robots had to travel through two gates and to the finish line. George and Ethan finished first, completing the course in a very impressive 17 seconds!
Inspired by some old film of Victorian children doing their exercise drills in P.E. lessons, we had a go at coming up with some moves of our own for the whole class to copy!
We've been testing the ultrasonic distance sensors on the :Move Robots and writing code to make them automatically avoid obstacles. One group got a greater-than sign the wrong way round and their robot sped up when it got near something!
Class 6 had great fun today at the Kent Police Open Day in Maidstone. We used the police car driving simulator, watched the dog show and the public order display and even completed the crime scene investigation activity.... Plus lots more. Above are some pictures of Mr Cork's group enjoying the day.
Arts Week 2023
Our theme this week has been printing. We have participated in all kinds of fun and interesting activities based around this theme. We researched print making and created an explanation text about it, researched a talented linocut printer called Angela Harding and wrote a biography about her, we workshopped with visiting printer Mr Caryer who taught the children about the Adana press, in an art / maths mash-up lesson we learnt about and created our own beautiful tessellations, we completed a class collage of traced and printed Islamic tiles as an entry in an R.E / Art competition and designed and created our very own 'soft' lino cut prints - firstly of our names and then our own, free-design, inspired creations. We also designed covers for the brochures for the Faversham Hop Festival. Please enjoy the photos below.
Arts Week - Design Technology Project - Earthquake CAM toys
During Arts Week, Class Six found out what CAMs are and how they are used to make parts move in machines and mechanical toys. Our topic this term has been Earthquakes and Biomes so we created a toy where the CAMs would create earthquake-like movement! We had to think carefully about our initial designs and construct with precision using a range of tools (saws and hammers) and materials (dowels and O-Rings) effectively. Class Six worked in twos and threes and every group successfully created an Earthquake scene where the CAMs worked to make parts move. Brilliant! Please enjoy the pictures and videos below...
Geography Field Trip To Rye
Today Class Six enjoyed their Geography field trip to Rye (in East Sussex) in the glorious sunshine. Our aim was to explore the town and to find out as much as we could about how both the human and physical geography of the town has changed over time. In the morning we enjoyed the Town Model presentation, took in the key landmarks through the town and had our picnic lunch in the Gun Gardens. In the afternoon we split into our separate, smaller adult-led groups and explored the town in more detail - climbing the tower of St Mary's Church, wandering the streets previously frequented by smugglers and of course sampling the commercial output of the town's Ice cream parlours and sweet shops. Throughout the day, we made field sketches and collected information about the history, land use and economy of the town. We will be completing a detailed project about the town during our Topic / Geography lessons in Term 6.
Visit to Local Archaeological Dig
Class 6 were lucky enough this week to visit a local archaeological dig site. The site is about 10 minutes up the road from the school and Mr Scutt was kind enough to drive the Badgers there in a rather stylish tractor trailer combination! The excavation work is being carried out by the Kent Archaeological Society, representatives of the society Richard and Celia worked wonderfully with the Badgers, telling us about why they are digging, what they have found and the site in general. The team have located Stone Age burial grounds in the form of two huge round barrows and one long barrow. It is their thinking that important tribal leaders may have been buried in these huge earthworks. The children were able to handle tools, pottery and flint 'flakes' known to be between 4 and 5 thousand years old! The team had also prepared a trench for the children to practice their own excavation skills in. What a brilliantly informative and engaging visit.
Spanish Food Tasting
As you may know, Classroom assistant Mr Wallace teacher Spanish to the Badgers. As the children's SATs had just come to an end, he thought and ideal Spanish lesson would be to taste and rate some traditional Spanish foods. The class had to complete a scoring table whilst tasting, learning Spanish words for 'Food', 'Points' and 'Notes'. They also practiced their correct pronunciation of each food item and learnt about the origins of these Spanish words and how the foods themselves are part of everyday Spanish culture. The Badgers tasted: Gazpacho, Manchego, Chorizo, Olives and Tortilla (amongst other things). What a gastronomically adventurous class the Badgers are - gazpacho being quite a popular choice.
Coronation-Linked Activity: Class Timeline of British Kings and Queens
Today we learnt about the long line of British rulers that king Charles III has become the most recent addition to. We looked at all 58 monarchs (plus the Lord protector Oliver Cromwell), the period of their reign and the royal 'house' which they represented. The class worked in pairs to produce a section of the timeline with 4 rulers on. we have laminated it and put it up in class for our future interest and reference. It looks fantastic!
Coronation Linked Activity - Terra Carta
Today we learnt about King Charles III's interest in environmentalism and found out about his 'Terra Carta' - a charter, mandate and vision for the future of our planet. As a class, we developed our own 5 visions for the future of our planet and turned them into beautiful posters now displayed in our Class Six cloakroom area.
Term 5 - Music - Composing Melodies on the Recorder and Using Formal Musical Notation
This afternoon, using the knowledge and skills gleaned from our sessions with Angela, we reminded ourselves of the finger positions needed to play a range of notes on the recorder, the positioning of these notes on musical notation staves and the symbols needed to represent notes played for a different number of beats. the children had a go at composing their own melodies and recording them on notation staves formally. They did a super job!
Term 5 - Computing & PSHE - Responsible Mobile Phone Use
Later on in this term we will be moving on to start our unit of study on Microsoft Excel - organising and manipulating data. To begin with, we had a class discussion about how to use mobile phones responsibly and recorded our ideas. We then looked at the various features and tools on Microsoft Publisher and thought about how this kind of information could be best communicated to children in Classes 4 and 5 (the intended audience / recipients of the leaflets). These two classes are yet to receive them but will soon to utilise as a tool for discussion in their own lessons.
Term 5 Art - Earthquake Inspired Mixed Media Collage
In this lesson we looked at images of the devastation caused by earthquakes then discussed a range of abstract and figurative artwork produced by artists as a response to earthquakes. Lastly we looked at some examples of mixed media collage and discussed the materials and processes being used - we looked at the different techniques used in the finished pieces. Using these inputs as their starting points the class made some stunning mixed media collages in response to the theme of earthquakes - they are currently displayed on the 'washing line' in our classroom.
Term 5 Outdoor P.E 1 - Cricket
So far we have been working on our fielding and bowling skills - moving on to batting next. In our fielding lesson we practiced both the long and short barrier, chasing the ball down and picking it up on our correct side and throwing in to the wicket keeper / throwing down the stumps. Moving on to bowling we worked on aiming with our the elbow and forearm of our non-dominant arm and keeping our dominant bowling arm straight, we thought about release points to make the ball pitch in the correct place. We competed in a bowling relay race where teams of 4 competed to hit the set of stumps three times.
Term 5 Music - Recorder Tuition
The Badgers have made such wonderful improvement in their recorder playing. We have progressed to playing 3 and 4 note pieces following along with formal musical notation and playing along with a backing track (progressing from the slower practice versions to the quicker 'performance' versions). we have learnt about keeping time and beats through clapping rhythms and discussion of syncopation. We also continue to work on our choral singing and singing rounds. Enjoy this part round of a class favourite 'the Breakfast Song'.
R.E Day 2023 - Passover
The Badgers had a fantastic time during our R.E day today. Our theme for the day was the Jewish festival and celebration of 'Passover'. During the morning sessions we looked into the background and practices of Judaism in general before 'zooming in' on the Passover. We found out WHY and HOW Jews observe the Passover and made some research notes in our R.E books. We looked at the Exodus story and focused in for our Art activity on the 10 plagues sent to Egypt. As a class, we worked as a team to create a large abstract collage representing the fifth plague - 'The Death of Livestock'. Whilst the children waited their turn to add their own contribution to the collage they could create their own art work inspired by any of the ten plagues in their sketch books. Next, we went to the hall where Mrs Ashmore and a team of fantastic parent helpers worked with the children to make cupcakes. Later in the day, once baked and cooled, the children iced the cupcakes in blue and used these along with some strawberry bootlaces and fizzy fish to re-create the parted Red Sea from the Exodus story. Once photographed, the parted Red Sea was consumed enthusiastically by Class Six! In the afternoon, we worked in small groups to create drama sequences telling the story of the ten plagues, Moses' repeated requests for freedom to the stubborn Pharaoh and the enslaved people's eventual escape from Egypt. The dramatic performances were FANTASTIC - such clever ideas were developed and the Badgers threw themselves into their acting with great gusto. Our final activity for the day, having watched each others performances, was to design our own Seder Plate - one where each of the 6 elements would represent an important event from within our own lives. We also enjoyed tasting two elements of the Seder Plate during this time, dunking our unrisen Matzah bread into both the Charoset and Maror. Most preferred the sweet apple of the Charoset! the Badgers had a wonderful day - please have a look at the photo slideshow to see what we got up to.
Check out class 6's brilliant Easter Bonnet winners... Zoe and Sonny!
Performing Arts Week - 'Night on a Bare Mountain'
In one of our final sessions of the week, we listened to Mussorgsky's 'Night on a Bare Mountain'. We watched a video showing how a skilled dance troupe had developed a sequence of movements to match a piece by Beethoven. Our aim was to combine both dance and drama (in this case voiceless acting) to create a scene to compliment this most dramatic of compositions.
Performing Arts Week - Rachel Portman
In this session, we found out about and listened to the work of Rachel Portman. She composes work for film, t.v and theatre. Rachel is prolific and her work highly regarded - she was the first female composer to win an Academy Award for her score for 'Emma'. We learnt about the link between visual art and music, looking at how Jackson Pollock, Georgia O'Keefe and others used music as inspiration for their artistic endeavour. we listened to 4 pieces by Rachel Portman from 4 different films and created a piece of art inspired by each.
Performing Arts Week - Samuel Coleridge Taylor
In another session, we learnt about the romantic period of classical music and discussed how hard it was for female and non-white composers to have success within the musical world at this time. We researched the much revered black composer Samuel Coleridge Taylor, listened to and appraised some of his most well-known compositions and finally worked on our own or in small teams to create biographical posters about him.
Performing Arts Week - The Instruments in the Orchestra & John Williams
For one of our sessions this week we spoke about how composers create original musical scores for films. we discussed how the music is meant to compliment and enhance what is happening on screen. We found out about one of the most successful film composers of all time - John Williams - and, having discussed the genre of each of 12 films, tried to match musical compositions to each film we thought it featured in. In another activity, we looked at a map of the orchestra pit and discussed the different instrument 'families' in it. We also discussed how the size of instruments within each family affects how it sounds. the children then listened to isolated audio of 15 orchestra instruments and tried to match them to the instrument they thought it was...
Performing Arts Week - 'Great Composers' - Philip Glass
Today we used the 'Garage Band' app on the iPads to compose a piece inspired by the minimalist, modern soundscapes of contemporary New York composer Philip Glass. We listened to and discussed some of his work and found out a little about him. Our aim in our own creations was to start with a repeated phrase of 3-4 notes and work outward from there adding layers and complimentary or contrasting sounds. Please have a listen and a look at these compositions...
Design Technology - Pneumatic Animals
Today we completed our 'Pneumatic Animals' Design Technology project. We have been reading the 'Into the Jungle' by Katherine Rundell in our English Lessons and finding out about 'Animals and Their Habitats' in Science - so today, we used our Design Technology skills to create a moving animal toy / model. We could choose to create whatever animal we liked and had to use a pneumatic syringe/tubing/balloon system to make its mouth open and close. The Badgers did BRILLIANTLY! The models look fantastic and the jaws open far wider than on Mr Cork's pitiful crocodile prototype. Please enjoy the photos (and videos) of our hard work below.
Class Six really enjoyed working with our visitor Tom Delahunt. Tom is a senior lecturer in nursing and, as part of his doctorate, has created a children's book called 'The Wandering Lamb'. The simple tale of the curious lamb acts as a beautifully engaging way for children to think about more complex themes associated with neurodiversity. Tom shared his book with the children but also led them in a poetry activity where they were encouraged to be fearless and creative in their exploration of language use.
Term 4 - Computing - 'We Are Computational Thinkers'
Since working with the Micro:Bit robots, we have started on our journey to coding a 'change calculator' on Scratch. We looked at algorithms in our first lesson, thinking about the precise instructions needed for a journey and how something like Google Maps might be coded to work most efficiently. We 'coded' instructions for efficient journeys between tow points on a map and using a network graph. In our next lesson we had a go at using Scratch to create code that would replicate some of the coding in a vending machine, working out the least number of coins possible for any given amount of change.
Term 4 - 'Layers of the Earth' Models
Our Geography topic this term is 'Volcanoes and Mountains'. We have learnt about how volcanoes are formed. An integral part of this learning journey has been understanding the internal structure of the earth: the inner core, outer core, mantle and crust. We have learned about what each layer is made up of and its temperature. In one lesson, we used modelling material to create our own models of the 'layers of the earth'. Though the sizes of each layer are not in proportion, the process had really helped us to remember the order in which the layers occur.
Term 4 - Music - Recorder Tuition with Angela
This term, Class 6 have been continuing their recorder tuition with Kent Music's Angela. They have been looking at musical notation and finger patterns for playing B, G and D. They have been learning to play along with background music, following musical notation visually at the same time. They are make fantastic progress and really starting to play very effectively as a whole group.
2023 Sheldwich Leavers Hoodies
During Monday morning's whole school assembly, Class Six were presented with their Leavers Hoodies. Don't they look brilliant!
Term 4 - Computing - 'We Are Computational Thinkers'
As you can see from the pictures below, this week we re-visited the coding of the Micro:Bit controlled Kitronik robots from last term's STEM week. We had unfinished business with those little, two-wheeled critters and definitely wanted another crack at coding them to make their way around the challenge course. We approached with renewed vigour and understanding and improved greatly on our last session, the winning team coding their robot to make it approximately halfway through the course. Next we will be moving on to use our computational thinking and 'Scratch' coding skills to create algorithms for a 'Change Calculator'.
Term 4 - Outdoor P.E - Tennis
This term we have been playing tennis. Our sports leaders continue to deliver fun and effective warm-up routines. So far, we have been focusing on our forehand shot. We've been working on precision and power through a number of different games and activities - a mixture of volleying and hitting after a bounce. In one activity we had to complete a target number of shots in a co-operative rally and only then could both members of the pair take one step away from the net - aiming to end up on the 'baseline'. Soon we will be moving on to developing our backhand shots.
Term 4 - Music - Volcano Documentary Soundtrack
As well as continuing with our weekly recorder tuition with Angela from Kent Music, we still complete other class music lessons. In this particular lesson we watched a clip from a David Attenborough documentary about the jungle. We thought about how the soundtrack had been used to compliment and enhance the visual footage. Working in small groups, we had to create our own composition to soundtrack a 1 minute long section of a different documentary showing a volcano erupting (which we had watched WITHOUT sound). We used tuned and untuned percussion instruments. Each group performed their composition, whilst the class listened they simultaneously watched the 1 minute long section of the eruption footage. We discussed which groups we thought had created a composition that accompanied the footage most effectively.
Term 4 - Indoor P.E - Volcano Dance
We have been looking at how to use our bodies to create movements and positions (in pairs and small groups), inspired by all things volcano - different types of volcano, how lava flows, the build up of heat and pressure beneath the ground etc. We will be working on how to link these movements and positions to create routines.
Term 3 - STEM Week
Class 6 have had a fabulous STEM week enjoying our 'investigations' theme. We completed maths investigations into remainders after division, addition towers, network diagrams and spirals. We had an engineering session looking at different construction designs for bridges and then making our own 'Beam Bridge' structures out of Lego - they had to match specified measurement criteria and support a 1kg weight without breaking (which they all did). in our Technology session we wrote code to make the Micro:Bit guided Kitronik robots go around the Sheldwich Challenge course - this was tricky and we'll be returning to it next term to defeat the course! We also conducted three scientific investigations - one in which we deprived one sense at a time (blindfold, holding our nose, covering our ears) to see to what extent this affected the aroma, flavour or texture of crisps. In another we used the amount of sugar and the temperature of water as variables to see how they would affect the production of Carbon Dioxide by yeast in our test tubes - balloons stretched over the mouth of the test tubes collected the CO2. We also had great fun with two members of the Science team from Canterbury Academy making our own coloured play dough! Finally we investigated how the type of liquid used in a film canister 'rocket' (with a dissolvable vit C tablet) affected the speed of launch. A great week of investigative fun, learning and skill. Enjoy the pictures below.
Term 3 - Design Technology - Ship's Biscuits
Today, linking nicely to our Australia topic, we learnt about the kinds of foods that had to be taken on long sea voyages in the past. We have been learning about Captain Cook's voyage of 'discovery' to Australia in the late 1770's and today we discussed why such long-lasting (but often nutritionally poor) foods were taken on voyages like Cook's. One such food was Ship's Biscuits or 'hardtack'. the children worked in small groups to make the stiff dough mixture needed for the biscuits, weighing and measuring ingredients carefully. They then made careful measurements to ensure the biscuits were rolled to the correct thickness before cutting out. The cook kindly let us use the school oven to cook the biscuits in the afternoon. Once cooled, we tasted the biscuits and evaluated their flavour, texture, aroma and appearance. We also designed packaging for them imagining that we might sell them in modern shops! The biscuits have gone into hygienic storage and once they have hardened and matured we will carry out another evaluation against the same 4 criteria.
Term 3 - Art - Clay Carving - The Story Telling Symbols of Australia's Indigenous Peoples
In our Art lesson this week, we learnt about the history of Art within the indigenous Australian community and culture. Aboriginal people have used symbolic imagery to tell and pass on stories for tens of thousands of years. They often used ochre and other pigments to paint on cave walls and other rocky surfaces but would also carve directly into the rock with sharp tools - this process inspired our Art today. We used clay and simple tools to create our own 'section of a rock face' or 'cave wall' before using cocktail sticks to carve our chosen symbols directly into the clay. I think you'll agree - the results look wonderful.
Term 3 - Music - Recorder Tuition and The Kent Music Roadshow
Class 6 are continuing with their recorder tuition with Angela this term - every Tuesday morning. The class are making super progress, not only in their ability to play notes with a much cleaner precision and tone, but in their growing understanding of written notation. We have been learning to play simple compositions containing 3 or 4 notes, playing along to music and following musical notation of the piece displayed on the board. This term, Key Stage Two also had a visit from the Kent Music Roadshow. Their performance was entitled 'Bach to the Future' and took the children on a journey through the different instruments in the orchestra combining live performance with informative talk and audience participation. The class got a lot out of it and it sparked a great conversation off back in class about how many of the class are learning to play an instrument and how many would like to.
Term 3 - Computing - 'We Are Connected' (Continued)
Having learnt about what blogs are, experimented with creating some simple blog posts and learning about how we can constructively and politely comment upon them, this week we began to prepare for creating our own more in-depth blog posts. We were given three argument topics to choose one from and research online - School Uniform, Formal Testing and Zoos (good or bad). In pairs we researched our chosen topic online and used a mind mapping tool called '2connected' to present and organise our research. We did this on the school iPads. Next time, we will use our research to create a more thoughtful and informative blog post before using the comments section to ask each other questions about our posts.
Term 3 - Indoor P.E - Gymnastics - Balances
In our Indoor P.E lessons this term we have been doing gymnastics - focusing on the aspect of balancing. In the first week we spoke about what we need to perform precise and sustained balances - co-ordination and good core strength being two key areas. In the first session we thought about which parts of our body we could use to balance on and what length of time a balance should be carried out for to be both effective and safe. In the second session we looked at combining solo balances with balances performed in a pair - again, thinking about which different body parts we can use and precision and safety. in our next sessions we will be looking in more depth at how gymnastic movement can be used to move in and out of (and link) different balances as part of a floor routine.
Term 3 - Outdoor P.E - Hockey
In our first lesson of this term we briefly recapped the rules and aims of hockey gameplay, split into teams and played some small games. Our overarching aim whilst doing this was to identify the skills that we felt we collectively need to work on in the coming weeks. We discussed our conclusions at the end of the lesson. We felt that shooting and off the ball awareness were big strengths but that we needed to work on passing and tackling mostly. We also felt that whilst dribbling was okay, we needed to practice 'reversing' the head of the stick whilst dribbling to avoid conceding a foul by using the wrong side. The pictures below show the activities we took part in in week 2 to help practice dribbling / reversing the head of the stick further.
Term 3 - Computing - 'We Are Connected'
In this sequence of lessons, class 6 will be learning what blogs are and how to contribute to them effectively - not only that, but how to comment on the blog posts of others safely and constructively.
Today, we discussed what blogs are, what there purpose is, how they are made and who creates them. Using 2Blog, the children had a go at creating a simple blog post about one of their favourite things and then had to comment on the blog posts of their classmates. When commenting, their focus was one commenting thoughtfully, politely and constructively - especially if they disagreed with the content of the post.
This week, Darren from 'Roots to Food' visited Sheldwich. He worked with every Key Stage Two class leading them in a cookery workshop. The children were split into teams and involved at every stage of the preparation and cooking of the dish: Teriyaki Chicken. Poor Mr Cork was absent for the session on his PPA time, so Mrs Lay got to see all of the Badgers awesome cookery skills and sample all the tasty food! By all accounts, Class Six are real set of budding pro chefs who conducted themselves very sensibly.