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Year 4

Autumn Term – Sand V Stone


Our topic for the Autumn term is 'Sand V Stone'. It focuses on different areas of history that happened at the same time, The Stone Age and The Egyptians. The main focus of the topic is to answer the question, ‘How was life different during The Stone Age and The Egyptians?’ 


In Science, children will focus their learning on electricity and sound. Children will learn about the difference between mains electricity and battery electricity and look at appliances that use electricity. They will then learn about circuits and symbols to represent circuits as well as how electricity travels through a circuit. Children will be encouraged to use this knowledge to know whether a circuit is complete or incomplete and whether it will light a bulb or not. They will then conduct a scientific experiment to discover which everyday materials are insulators or conductors. The children will then learn about how different instruments produce sounds by vibrating before learning about how these vibrations travel through the air into the ear and the information is sent to the brain. The children will also learn about pitch and volume and how instruments are made so that these can change depending on how the instrument is played, to see this first-hand the children will create their own set of panpipes to explore how they can change the pitch and volume of the sound made.


The children will be using their Science learning about circuits and switches to help them make their own torch in DT.  Finally in art, children will be comparing different types of art from the two periods in History. They will be looking at the colours used and how the art was created. Children will be learning about the importance of lines in their art before learning how to overlap the lines to create a more interesting picture. The children will also learn about the primary colours and how to mix these to create secondary and tertiary colours, so that they can create the correct colours from their time period on the art they will create, which will be in the style of either Ancient Egyptian art or Stone Age art.




Spring Term – Bem-Vindo Brazil!

Our topic for this term is Bem-Vindo Brazil!  The focus of the topic is on Brazil and everything to do with it, including the rainforest. The focus of the topic is science, geography, music and DT. To kick off such a fun topic, the children will take part in a Stunning Start to immerse themselves in learning about Brazil, its culture, language, music and history. 


In Science, children will be looking at all living things and the seven life processes that tell us how we know if an animal or plant is alive. The children  how they are classified into the different animal groups such as vertebrates and invertebrates, mammals, arachnids, insects, fish, reptiles, amphibians and many others. They will look at a range of classification keys before writing their own to classify animals found around the school grounds and animals that they could find in the Amazon rainforest. The children will then look at a range of food chains, before identifying the producers, consumers, predators and prey. They will also learn how a change in the environment can threaten life, which is predominant in Brazil, with deforestation in the Amazon Rainforest. Additionally, children will take part in a water pollution experiment where they will see how water can be polluted in many different ways and how difficult it can be to clean the water back to its original state. 


During our Bem-Vindo Brazil topic, children will take part in geography learning. They will first look at the continents of the world before using google maps to locate areas of similar environmental regions such as desert areas, tundra or tropical areas of the world. The children will then learn about the Equator and how this separate the different hemispheres of the world into the Northern and Southern hemisphere, they will also learn about how different regions of the worlds have different climates depending on how close or how far they are to the Equator. The children will use this knowledge to become weather forecasters and discuss what they think the weather and climate of Brazil and the Amazon Rainforest would be. In Geography, the children will also be looking at human affects on geography and looking at how deforestation of the rainforest affects the environment and the animals that live in it. 


Following this, in music the children will be looking closely at a Brazilian composer - Heitor Villa-Lobos. They will be listening to a piece of music, which he composed, all about a train travelling through the Brazilian countryside (Bachianas brasileiras No. 2, The Little Train of the Caipira). The children will then learn about how to speed up and slow down a song, keeping a steady beat, different rhythms and syncopation, which gives the train sounds. This will help children use and understand musical notations when planning and composing their piece of music. All the children will then create a class piece of music as an ensemble using Heitor Villa-Lobos' music as inspiration, using their voices and a range of instruments with accuracy, control and expression. 


For the children's DT learning, they will be making their own version of a Brazilian carnival float. Children will plan, design and make their float using wood to create a chassis which they will cut to the correct lengths themselves using a hack saw. They will then look at mechanisms they can include in their float to create a moving piece before adding axels and wheels, enabling their float to move. Then the children can decorate their float making sure it looks similar to Rio de Janerio carnival floats they saw during the planning and design stage. The children will then finish their DT learning by evaluating their carnival float against a range of design criteria that the class had chosen previously. 


During ‘Bem-vindo Brazil’, there will hopefully be a trip to the Eden Project to become a rainforest ranger. Finally at the end, the children will be planning and enjoying their own Callington Carnival for their fantastic finish. 

Summer Term – Strange and Dangerous Creatures


Our topic for the summer term is Strange and Dangerous Creatures. During this topic, our lessons will be focused on Science, Art, DT and Geography as the children. The children will also have explicit Computing, RE, PE and PSHE lessons along side these.


As part of this topic, in Science, the children will learn about they different ways living things can be grouped, they will explore and use classification keys to help, group, identify and name a variety of living things in their local and wider environment. They will learn to recognise that environments can change and that this can be sometimes pose dangers to living things. They also construct and interpret a range of food chains, identifying producers, predators and prey. 


In Art, the children will be learning all about printing! They will look at the well-known artist, William Morris, and use his prints to inspire them to create their own patterns. They will then transfer these patterns onto their individual printing block before they begin printing their creative pattern to create a backdrop for their Strange and Dangerous Creature's habitat. 


During our DT learning, we will be learning and understanding the importance of a healthy and well-balanced diet. The children will then research appropriate food to take on an expedition. The children will then use the kitchens, their research and their knowledge of a healthy and well-balanced diet to plan and create an enjoyable lunch to take with them on an expedition to hunt for a strange and dangerous creature around the local area. After this, the children will evaluate their lunches and discuss what went well and what they could improve for next time.


As part of their Geography learning, children will be learning how to give directions using the 8 points of the compass and then plotting positions on a map using a 4-figure grid reference. This learning will be beneficial for their subsequent learning as they use a map to navigate the local area around Callington Primary School and plot areas of interest on the map accurately. The children will also be recording these areas of interest using sketch maps, which are maps that provide a representation of the landscape, and a range of graphs. 


To conclude this amazing topic, the children will enjoy an expedition as they search for a range of strange and dangerous creatures around the local area for their Fantastic Finish. The children will be creating their own food, activities and shelter for the expedition.