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Sapphire Class Year 3 and 4
We are learning about the human skeleton this term. We started the unit by having to recreate a human skeleton by trying to place all the bones in the correct places. It took most groups a couple of goes to get it right. On one of our first attempts, we realised we had placed all of the bones from the arms in the same place alongside the bones for the legs, leaving our skeleton armless and with very long legs! Miss Tonner and Mrs Shipton took bones away from each skeleton model and then we had to recreate it again and figure out what was missing. The only way to get the piece back was to ask for it using the correct scientific word for the bone e.g. we weren’t allowed to say the leg bone, we had to say the femur or fibula or tibia.
After a really busy spring term, we’re really excited to finally get our DT day so we could build our shelters we had designed. Each group had to have a shelter built that was flood proofed. We also had to work out our coatings as each material and some tools came with a price. We spent the first half of the morning preparing all of our resources – selecting the most effective materials, measuring and cutting all of the pieces needed. This set us up for the second half of the morning where we spent the time building the shelter and making sure it was ready for the testing session in the afternoon. We loved working in our groups and we were pretty pleased with our shelters. The testing was super fun because we got to see whether all of our hard work paid off. One by one, each shelter was drenched in water from all angles. We had placed a little teddy elephant (aka Ellie) inside the shelter to see whether or not she remained dry after the downpour. In 2 of the shelters, Ellie came out pretty dry. Unfortunately, in the remaining 3 shelters, Ellie came out drenched, especially in the final shelter as the group never got round to placing a roof on it! The winning shelter was made by Ava, Clara, Eliza, Georgia, Jasmine and Lenni as they had the shelter that prevented the majority of water entering as well as having the cheapest cost too!
Our new English book is about Elizabeth Cotten who was a folk singer from America. We have listened to a few of her songs. The first one we listened to is one of her most famous songs ‘Freight Train’. The first time we heard it, we did find it unusual as it was so different to anything we had heard before. After a few times,of listening to her song, we started to think about what images the lyrics painted. Some of us could picture a figure lying in a field watching the old trains roll past while others said that they could see someone playing a banjo or guitar sitting on top of a haystack watching the world go by. We weren’t sure if the singer was male or female at first as the voice was quite distinctive. We didn’t find out the answer until the end of the lesson. We were surprised to find out the singer was female and that she continued to perform her music up into her old age. We are going to learn about her life and what inspired her to become a musician.
The Y3s looked at and wrote about the Transatlantic Slave Trade becasue Elizabeth’s family were descendants of slaves so it was important to know where her family came from. We were really shocked to learn about what had happened to millions of people between the 16th and 19th centuries. It is really important for us to understand history, even if it is a horrible event, so that we can learn from it and work hard to make sure it never happens again.
We are starting to learn a dance move known as tutting. It is where you use your arms and hands to perform different routines. Some of the moves are very simple, like holding your arms in a prayer position while others can be very complicated e.g. quickly turning straight arms into the position of a rectangle and then quickly slide into another position all within a few seconds. We are watching tutorial videos to help us so that we will be able to combine all of the moves and make a new routine which we will perform to music. 
We will be learning about Romans this term. We have already started looking at artefacts linked to the Romans and have begun thinking about who would’ve used them and what they would’ve been used for. Some of them were quite obvious e.g. sword, coins, jewellery while others were quite tricky to figure out and we did struggle to come up with a use for them. Have a look at the pictures and see if you can guess what these artefacts are and who would’ve used them. We talked about what we already knew about the Romans. We know they came from Rome, they had a huge army which invaded many countries over time, Gladiators were strong fighters, one of the famous buildings in Rome is called The Colosseum which is like a huge arena.
Y3 Roman Mosaics
While the Y4s were at Viney Hill, the Y3s got to design and make their own Roman mosaic tiles. We used different types of tiles. Some of us used glass tiles while others used traditional terracotta ones. We had to stick them down with PVA glue and then leave them to dry overnight. The next day we then put the grout on them to fill in any gaps we left. The grout took a bit longer to dry, but once it did, we were pleased with the final versions. The tiles we made could be put on display or used as a coaster at home! 

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