Meet the teacher
My name is Mr Thompson and I am the year 4 teacher. I have been teaching at Dame Dorothy since 2007 and I really enjoy it and I’m sure your children will do too. Working with me in year 4 will be Mrs Tweedy. I am responsible for PE and Science in the school.
The literacy lessons consist of the teaching of a number of key elements; Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation (SPAG) and text level work which involves reading a text and then exploring it through shared writing and independent writing. The SPaG element will involve using prepositions, subordinating conjunctions, speech marks, paragraphs and much more. We will complete 6 quick fire spag questions every morning after mental maths.
Dame Dorothy Primary School boasts excellent mathematic skills. Each morning, the children have mental maths to complete. It is important that the children get to school promptly at 8:45am so they don’t miss out on their mental maths. I would also encourage the children to access a number of online games at home (TT Rockstars) which will help develop their stamina towards their knowledge of times tables and related division facts as well as quick fire addition/subtraction mental maths (see the links below).
In maths teaching, we are working in line with the New Curriculum and the children are being taught more formal methods. The children must know their times tables and related division facts to support them in their work. It’s the basis of so much of what we will learn this year!
This term we will be reading texts about Vikings and will be basing some of our literacy work around that. There is a big focus on handwriting in the school this year. Presentation is so very important!
Y3 and 4 generally have the same spellings over the course of the year. We begin by going over some of the Y2 spellings and then move onto the Y3/4 list. Spellings are given out on a Monday – the children will be tested on these the following Friday.
This term, our topic will continue to be Vikings- which is a study of the History of this civilisation and how they impacted on Britain today. We will use this topic to inspire our writing and even our art work. From the topic we will also achieve reading skills, art, DT, RE and even some maths so it really will be a topic based curriculum!
In Science we will be looking at states of matter. It will follow on from the Y2 unit of the same name and is physics based.
We have the opportunity to use a wide range of ICT resources such as laptops and iPads. We ensure that the children are aware of how to keep safe when using the internet and they are always extremely responsive to this. On a weekly basis, the children are learning basic programming skills and are learning to write simple instructions (algorithms) to make things happen; the children are really motivated by this.
PE lessons are on a Monday afternoon. Please make sure your child has the correct kit and can remove any earrings and/or jewellery they may be wearing. We will be doing cricket for the first half term and netball for the second half term via expert teaching from our PE coaches. Please note, it is essential that your children have suitable footwear for PE sessions. Trainers must be worn.
Swimming will take place on a Friday afternoon. Please make sure your child has a swimming kit this day. Black one piece costumes for the girls and black shorts/trunks for the boys.
In the spring term Year 4 will continue to learn to play the recorder and will perform as part of the Easter assembly. As part of a whole school topic, we will listen to the music of Mason Bates – a modern composer. His music paints a picture of a mythical creature and we will listen and imagine the creature. Year 4 will have the opportunity to follow a Samba drumming course provided by an online resource. They will be encouraged to learn musical terms and to read standard notation.
We go to the library on a Tuesday. Our books are colour banded depending on reading ability. These books will be changed weekly. We invite you to read with your child and talk about what they’ve read. The children will also have the opportunity to take a library book home to read at their leisure. We urge our children to read every day for an hour. From experience, only the avid readers are in a position to deal with the demands of the new reading curriculum successfully.
A few reminders
Homework is given on a Monday and usually consists of spellings, maths or SPaG. This is due in the following Friday and the children will be tested on their spellings also on a Friday. All homework set will be relevant to learning in class. Homework is a great way of keeping parents informed about class learning as well as giving the children the opportunity to consolidate their skills. Please feel free to see me or write in your child’s homework book if there are any issues. It is essential that home and school communicate effectively, working in partnership to ensure that the children receive the very best from school.
We also have 2 more trips to Beamish this year. These trips are paid for by the Sir Tom Cowie Trust and will be unique one-off trips to enjoy and are not connected with our topics. Dates are 02/04/20 and 02/07/20. We will concentrate on different parts of the museum on each visit.
If parents have any concerns, appointments can be made at the office. I will try to see you within 3 working days of your request being made at the end of the school day (except Mondays and Wednesdays). Please note, I am not available before school starts on a morning.