Emmaville Primary School

North America Yr 6

Welcome to the North America Year 6 Class Page.  Here, you can find out about everything that we've been doing this year.

Friday 8th April 2022


What a lovely end to a fantastic term!  Congratulations to you all for your excellent effort, enthusiasm and attitude to your school work this term – I couldn’t be more proud of you. 


We seem to have spent most of today celebrating; a special congratulations to our Easter egg winners: Alex, Poppy and George K.  I would also like to congratulate Tilda for winning our performance poetry competition (entry on last week’s page); James for his amazing ‘Geordie’ poem and Abi for her beautiful Easter bonnet.  As if that wasn’t enough, we were thrilled this morning when Mr Elliott came into our class to announce that we were the Blaydon and District Football champions!


I hope you all have a lovely and restful Easter and I can’t wait to see you all again on Monday 18th April.


Mrs McK

Friday 1st April 2022


The children have thoroughly enjoyed our enrichment week in North America class and the various activities and learning opportunities chosen to celebrate, and find out more about, diversity and equality.


Some of the highlights have been seated volley ball – I don’t think we were quite prepared for how competitive, and physically demanding, this sport could be! The children also enjoyed decorating our tree on our classroom door (photo below).  The flowers and leaves are made from the research the children did into different festivals celebrated throughout the world across different religions, which is why we have named our tree ‘Collective Worship’.   


My personal highlight of the week has to be the children’s performance poetry.  The children were tasked to research and create poems which reflect themselves and to consider what makes them different and what makes them, them.  I have been so impressed by the increase in confidence, expression and delivery when they are performing their poems.  I have included some of the performances below for you to get a flavour.


Hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 25th March 2022


We’ve had another lovely week in North America class.  In maths we have been deepening our knowledge of angles. We considered how adjacent angles, on a straight line, sum to 180 degrees and how angles around a point sum to 360 degrees.  The children have become really accurate, and speedy, at calculating the value of missing angles.


In English, the children have been really enthusiastic about writing their warning stories, which are almost complete.  I have been really impressed at their growing skills of redrafting and improving their work.


We also welcomed some new additions to our class this week (approximately 1,000 new additions) in the form of frogspawn which have already hatched.  We intend to get our walking boots back on in the next couple of weeks and release the tadpoles into Sled Lane Pond - part of our walking trail for our History Detectives Project.


Hope you all enjoy the lovely weather this weekend.


Mrs McK

Friday 19th March 2022


We’ve had a bit of an ‘arty’ week in North America this week.  We finished our artwork for our History Detectives Projects ready for Tommy to collect and get it ready for the finished map – more to follow on this in future weeks.  I think you will agree that the standard is really high. 


We were also asked by George’s family to help them with their charity work for the people of the Ukraine.  George’s dad will be travelling to the Ukraine border on the 3rd April with all of the generous gifts that the family have collected from the community.  George’s mum, Lisa, has asked us to make cards to put into the bags of supplies.  The children have chosen to create some beautiful artwork with a focus on the Ukraine flag and messages of hope which they were able to translate into Ukraine using the internet.  Our thoughts are with the people affected by the crisis and with George’s family during their phenomenal mission to raise funds and take supplies to those in need.


A final word about our amazing year 6 football team: in case you didn’t catch Sky News last night, our boys have made it to the final of the English School Boys 7-a -side Football Cup! Wow – we’re all blown away by your success.


Have a lovely weekend.

Friday 4th March 2022

It’s been a lovely start to the new half term.  I was so impressed with how well the children had approached their ‘half-term challenge’ which was set for them by Tommy and Gill as part of our History Detectives project – more news on that to follow in future weeks.


In English, we felt totally privileged to be part of a number of primary schools to be contributing to a national writing project: Imagine a Story.  We were tasked with writing a chapter for a book which will be published, and we will be invited to a reading of the published story. The completed book will have all our names included in it, and we will each receive a copy.


We also started a new unit on electricity in science this week when we explored and drew circuits using the correct internationally recognised symbols and labelled them with accurate scientific vocabulary. (photos below)


Well done North America.  I hope you all have a peaceful weekend.

Friday 18th February 2022


There was great excitement in North America class on Wednesday this week when we were visited by Jill Bennison from Gateshead Libraries and Tommy Anderson, a local artist, who came to school to launch our History Detectives project.  Over the next few months, the children will be creating a map of our local area which will be illustrated by their art and which will include places of interest and form part of a network of maps for visitors to use when visiting our area.  The children are really excited to begin the task and have been given a holiday challenge by Gill and Tommy to investigate one of the points of interest on our route to explore further and complete a task on.  I can’t wait to see what the children produce on their return from the half term holiday.


Hope you all have a peaceful and enjoyable break.

Mrs McK

Frday 11th February 2022

In addition to our regular lessons in North America class this week, we have had two ‘main’ themes: internet safety and wellbeing.  At the start of the week, we secured an extra playtime for Friday’s Wellbeing Day by challenging (and beating) our site manager, Curtis, to a keepy-uppy contest.  Thank you Archie for earning us that extra time in the beautiful winter sun today.


As part of our Safer Internet Day on Tuesday, the children had to design a poster to remind them of the SMART rules (please ask your children what they are) they need to consider when online.  The winning design will now be the wallpaper of our iPads at school.  Congratulations to Charlotte on her excellent winning design.


Today was Dress to Express day; we have had a focus of children’s mental health all day.  Mrs Berry and I have been really impressed by the children’s maturity and openness while discussing some challenging topics.  You should all be incredibly proud of yourselves.


Have a lovely weekend!

Mrs Mc

Friday 4th February 2022


The weeks seem to be flying by just now; however, we’re certainly packing them with plenty of learning in North America class. Now that we have mastered converting between fractions and decimals, we’ve moved onto converting to percentages and finding percentages of amounts. We’ve also finished our narrative unit of writing linked to the book Street Child by Berlie Doherty this week.  We’ve displayed our work outside of the classroom for others to see as we are so proud of the finished product.  In fact, Miss Armstrong came to our class on Thursday and told us how impressed she was with the children’s writing.


We also began our preparation for our entries to the ‘Young Coders Competition’- a country-wide competition looking for young people who have the skills to be crowned a member of ‘Young Coder Crew 2022’.  Over the coming weeks the children will be creating a game using Scratch coding language - a coding language that our children are skilled at.  This year’s theme is My World Our Planet.  The children are challenged to create a reactive game which encourages other children to take care of natural resources and improve the environment (something close to the children’s hearts). I’m really excited to see the children’s finished entries.


Hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Friday 28th January 2022

We have had such a busy week in North America. Our English this week was all about using our writing skills to build tension. We used a fantastic piece of film, about an extraordinary mountain biker, to help us to create a narrative that would keep the reader on the edge of their seat.


In history we found out about some of the reforms that helped changed the lives of Victorian children including Dr Thomas Bardardo and Lord Shaftesbury.  We went on to use our Oracy skills to have a ‘parliamentary debate’ in role as the various Members of Parliament of the day. We debated whether we agreed with the reforms or not.  The children made excellent politicians and spoke so articulately and passionately.


Music this week was all about pitch – when musical sounds get higher or lower; dynamics – when notes get louder or quieter; and texture – changing the amount of layers in our music by adding or taking away instruments from the composition. We hope our lovely reception children, who were dancing down the corridor while we played, enjoyed the performance.


The highlight of the week however had to be our science lesson.  We borrowed some resources from Newcastle University STEM outreach project and learned all about adaptation and evolution.  This included looking at different bird skulls and considering which characteristics had helped them to adapt to their environment.


Enjoy your well-earned rest this weekend!

Friday 21st January 2022

On Monday, all of the children across our school celebrated World Religion Day. The aim was to promote interfaith understanding, harmony and to consider the things we could do to help to unite everyone whatever their faith. As we compared the six major religions across the world, we recognised that actually all of the religions shared the same key message: treat each other with respect and love one another. Each year group was tasked with exploring a different religion to those that they have studied previously. In North America class we studied Sikhism, which we found out was a beautiful religion based on the belief of equality and service to others.  We felt that this was perfect as we are currently looking at the topic of what we can do for others in our PSHE studies - more news on that to follow.  The children created some beautiful ‘knowledge organisers’, a selection can be seen in the photos below.

Friday 14th January 2022

In maths this week we completed our unit on fractions, so we thought we’d look at a problem involving chocolate to give the children the opportunity to use their knowledge and share their thinking when trying to work out what fraction of a chocolate bar they would get in the following scenario.

In our classroom, we set out three tables. Table 1 had one block of chocolate on it, table 2 had two blocks of chocolate on it and, guess what, table 3 had three blocks of chocolate on it.

The children were allowed to come in one at a time and could enter when the person in front of them had sat down. When a child entered the room, they asked themselves this question:

"If the chocolate on the table I sit at is to be shared out equally when I sit down, which would be the best table to sit at?"

However, the chocolate was not shared out until all the children were in the room so as each one entered, they had to ask themselves the same question.

The link to the problem, from the nrich maths site can be found here

I was really impressed by the children’s maths-rich vocabulary (something we have been working hard on recently) when they were discussing their reasoning with their friends.  There’s a photo below showing just how competitive the task got when the stakes (chocolate) were so high!  In order to keep our carbon footprint as small as possible, and not to waste any resources, we decided to eat the chocolate afterwards!

Friday 7th January 2022

Happy New Year from us all in North America Class!  The children have returned to school in good spirits, and with plenty of enthusiasm for the Spring term.


In English we have started a new unit which is based on the book Street Child by Berlie Doherty – the story of a Victorian boy and the hardships he endures.  The book fits perfectly with one of our history topics (Victorians) and the children are skilled at making connections between the two.  In science we also started a new unit on ‘inheritance and variation’ – who knew that there Were so many ‘cross’ combinations of pets belonging to the children?


One of the highlights of the week has to be our PSHE session in which we considered targets for the year ahead, both in school and outside of school. It was so heart-warming to hear that so many of the children’s’ targets were to bring happiness to others – what a phenomenal bunch of young people they are.

Friday 17th December 2021
It's been a week of celebration in North America class!
We celebrated Christmas during our Christmas party, including the winners of our Christmas quiz.  We also had a lovely Christmas dinner in our classroom.
On Thursday, Miss Armstrong came to our class with certificates and celebrations for those children who have been on the 'Rewards Sheet' three times this term.  We were all so proud of Poppy, Mary, Tilda, Charlie, Leo and Tilda.
In assembly today we also celebrated George and Abi who were competition winners of the Winter Wonderland Writing task set by our friend Melanie Cornish.
And finally, we celebrated Megan who won our Christmas art competition set by Liz Twist MP.
However, I would like to celebrate the whole of North America class for their infinite positive mindsets and kindness to one another - it's a total pleasure to share this journey with you.
Have a lovely Christmas.
Mrs McK

Friday 10th December


We’ve had an amazing STEM (Science, Technology. Engineering and Maths) week in North America class.  At the launch of STEM week on Monday, we learnt that, in order to enjoy and be successful during the week, we needed two essential qualities: a growth mindset (something Emmavillians have in spades) and curiosity.  Indeed, the great scientist Albert Einstein said. ‘I have no special talents.  I am only passionately curious.’  


I don’t think I’ve ever seen the children being so competitive carrying out their practical challenges, whilst continuing to work as a team, showing respect and resilience.


We began the week by learning the basics of computer coding music with Sonic Pi, as with all coding, there were times when we had to de-bug and find ways to make the Sonic Pi code work, but the resulting music was phenomenal.   


We also found out about the inner workings of a mobile phone and produced an information text about this (photo below). 


On Wednesday, we had a challenge to build a catapult that would fire cakes at Little Red Riding Hood’s Grandma’s house, whilst clearing the ‘forest’ in front of it. The winning team, with pin-point accuracy and a catapult the Ancient Romans would have been proud of, was George, Elijah, Charlie and Lucy.


However, one of the highlights has to be our afternoon of ‘Stop-motion animation’.  I’ve put some of the amazing films below.


An enormous well done to all of our future inventors, engineers, mathematicians, technology and science experts – the future certainly looks bright!


Enjoy your weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 3rd December 2021

Last week was a really special week as the children received their new walking boots from the Walk and Talk Trust.  The trust is a charity which encourages people to walk and explore the countryside.


As part of the initiative, members of the Emmaville staff completed a 11.5 mile walk up High Cup Nick. The teachers were sponsored by family, friends, parents and carers, which enabled them to raise £1,105. The money raised went to the Walk and Talk Trust, and every Year 6 pupil at Emmaville received a pair of walking boots.


On Tuesday, we decided to give the boots a ‘test drive’ and set off for Sled Lane pond armed with pictures of native plants to identify and categorise using our classification keys which we have been studying in our science lessons.  Who knew that identifying vascular and nonvascular (ask your children!) plants would be so much fun.


Hope you all have a lovely weekend.


Mrs McK

Friday 26th November 2021

In English this week we have been studying the poem, ‘The Highwayman’ by Alfred Noyes (1906).  The children are thoroughly enjoying discussing the various roles of each of the characters and the linguistic tools that the author uses to engage the reader.  I was so impressed with the beautiful, descriptive language the children used to describe the scene in the first stanza of the poem.  There are a few examples for you below.


The children were so thrilled to receive their new walking boots this week – more on this to follow in next week’s post.


Have a lovely weekend,

Mrs McK


Leo Innes

Moonlight glimpses through the branches and casts a shadow on the forest floor. The Highwayman shivers and pulls his coat tightly remembering that ‘patience is the key’.

Away in the distance, the bell of the old church rings.  He places his hands on the pistol butts and waits.

The sound of horses rises from the distance.  The wheels of a coach approach him through the dimly-lit wood.

Dexter P

The Highwayman walked through the turning path.  Hawks squawked aggressively under the cold, gloomy moon.  His heart missed a beat.

In the distance, the rustic clock chimed eerily.  The fallen twigs beneath his feet snapped as he made his way under the dark, twisted trees that peered over the land for miles.

A shiver ran down his spine as a shadow approached him.  He was ready for anything!

Liam G

The dirt track leads to the gateway made out of skeletal trees.  To the left of The Highwayman, there is a pitch-black pine forest.  The clock’s chimes of doom fill the air as The Highwayman puts his hands on his pistols ready to attack.

Mark H

Moonlight shines through the tall, thin branches coated in a thick fog that is filling the air.  The squawking sound of birds gradually fades away as the bell to call out midnight chimes.  A shiver runs down my spine as I walk the path of terror with a single tear rolling down my cheek.  I pull out my pistols and wait.




Friday 19th November 2021

We have had such a busy week this week, and consequently so much to share with you, so here goes…


This week we have celebrated Inter Faith Week.  The aims of the week were to strengthen good inter faith relations, increase awareness of different faith communities in the UK and increase understanding of different religions. We took some time to learn about the similarities and differences between some religions and decided to make a cube with symbols from different religions on each side.  We felt is showed the interesting and amazing aspects each of the religions have; however, each one is unique just like every face of our cube is unique.


We have learnt the lovely poem that Sarah Hammersley wrote for us and performed it for Miss Armstrong, Mrs McKie and Mrs Liddle.  I’ve also recorded, and put it on here, to show just how much the kind words in the poem are reflected by the children’s personalities whilst they perform it.


In science, the children are really enjoying our unit on classifying organisms (pictures below).  I don’t think I’ve ever had a class that is so knowledgeable about animals.  I’m learning so many amazing facts from them!


All this, plus Children in Need, plus our visit from Adam Bushnell (see below) has left us all ready to put on our PJs and relax, fortunately we’ve all been in our PJs all day.


Have a lovely relaxing weekend everyone.

Mrs McK

Wednesday 17th November 2021

The children have had a fantastic afternoon with one of our favourite authors, and friend of Emmaville Primary: Adam Bushnell.  Adam worked with the children to help them explore one of our History topics – World War II.  The session included the children creating a plan using adjectives, nouns, verbs and adverbs to support them with their narrative writing about life in World War II.  After that, it was outside to create a trench using natural resources!  The final part of the session saw the children using a ‘Polybus’ number square to create their own World War II spy code.  I think the photos reflect just how much the children enjoyed their time with Adam.

Friday 12th November 2021

We’ve had another super week in North America.  In our maths lessons we have been exploring factors and multiples of numbers (there are a few photos below); we’ve also looked at prime numbers – ask the children for a definition if you are unsure what a prime number is, or indeed is not!

In art, Mrs Sanderson has been working with the children to produce some beautiful remembrance pieces which include colour wash and silhouettes.  I think you’ll agree that they look really effective displayed outside our classroom.

I was also incredibly proud of Megan and Leo this week for their reading of ‘In Flanders Fields’ by John McCrae during our Remembrance Assembly on Thursday.

Wishing you all a lovely weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 5th November 2021

We’ve had a lovely first week back after the half term break.  The children have arrived back with a lovely positive approach to their studies that we have come to know them for.  This week has included getting to grips with a tricky formal method for long division; using a range of tenses in our ‘flashback’ stories; finding all about the impact of the industrial revolution in history; and beginning to learn how to create webpages, among many other things.  We also finished our DT unit on textiles this week.  During the unit the children were challenged to design a soft toy.  We were mindful that during WW2 (one of our history topics) people had to live on rations, so they were encouraged to ‘make do and mend’ i.e. clothes would not be thrown out, but repaired, or re purposed as something else.  The children used a variety of stitches when they were creating their toys including running stitch, blanket stitch and cross stitch. I’ve included some pictures of their masterpieces below.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 15th October 2021

We have had a super sporty week in North America! On Wednesday we were invited to Thorp Academy for a ‘Festival of Sport’ (photos to follow).  It was so lovely to see the children enjoying all of the sporting challenges that were created for them by some of our past students now attending Thorp.  I think the children were all really tired when we arrived back at Emmaville; however, our representatives on the school football team (James, Archie and Mark) had a quick change of kit before heading up to Durham for the County finals of the football league, where they were successful in earning a place in the North East finals which will be held next Wednesday.

In PE we also began our unit on netball.  I was really impressed by how quickly the children’s passing improved.

Enjoy your well-earned rest this weekend everyone.

Mrs McK

Friday 8th October 2021

We’ve had a wonderful week in North America class, mainly thanks to the opportunity for us to delve into so much poetry as Thursday was National Poetry Day.  We’ve listened to, read, wrote and performed poetry for the majority of the week. A particular highlight was taking part in a workshop with one of the children’s favourite poets - Michael Rosen, who gave us lots of tips about how we can play with words and sounds to make our poems engaging to our audience.  The children went on to write some excellent poetry and performed the poem ‘Poetry Pie’ by Roger McGough which you can watch below.


This week was also a big week for Megan, Tilda, Liam and Adam who competed in the Gateshead Schools Sports Partnership primary cross-country event.  We were incredibly proud of them as the course was particularly challenging.

Well done North America; enjoy your weekend.

Friday 1st October 2021

We were giddy this week in North America class at the thought of getting back into the swing of educational visits, and the Victoria Tunnel, which we visited as part of our history studies on the Victorians, didn’t disappoint.


We were so lucky to have some amazing guides in Basil who had lived through World War II; Marion who had been evacuated three times during World War II; and Gerard who was an expert in local history and the Victoria Tunnel.


The children learnt so many facts about both the tunnel itself and what life was like during the war that they decided to write thank you letters to our guides explaining which were their favourite facts and why. I was incredibly proud of their letters which also showed how grateful they were to Basil, Marion and Gerard for giving up their time to pass on their experiences to future generations.


Well done North America – have a lovely weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 24th September 2021

This week the children had to vote on who they would like to represent them on our school council.  We had 11 children who made a speech in front of the class, explaining why they thought that they would make a good school councillor.  Mrs Berry and I were really moved by the children’s speeches; we both agreed that we feel privileged to be among such kind and caring children.  Here are some snippets from their speeches.


Emmaville has taught me so much in the time that I have been here.  I would like to spend my final year being part of the School Council to give something back, not just to the younger pupils, but to the school itself.

I would like to plan and take part in events that can help raise money for charities and our school.  I raised £800 this year by donating my hair to the Little Princess Trust.

Now we’re in year 6, hopefully we get to do all those fun things again and even more, so let’s make things change together by making me school councillor.

I would like to be a school councillor because I am hardworking and helpful to anyone who may need it and not just willing, but happy, to help out with changes in the school and charity works either in school or in the community.  In addition, I am kind and thoughtful of others and their decisions and listen to everyone and consider their ideas.  I also try to include everyone’s thoughts before making a decision and make sure that the decision is fair for everyone.  Most importantly, I will try my hardest to keep everyone happy.

I would like to improve the school by making it more eco-friendly by planting trees and by having Fairtrade.  This would help the environment and farmers in poorer countries. This is our last year and I think we should make it our best.  If I was voted as school councillor I would make sure that this would happen.


I know it was hard for the children to make a decision as all of the speeches were so good; however … congratulations to Dexter and Poppy who will represent our class this year.


We were also impressed this week by our young scientists' skills when carrying out a fair test, and then describing patterns in the data they gathered including making conclusions.  I have included a few photos of them in action below.

Well done North America - enjoy your weekend

Friday 17th September 2021

It’s been a really busy week in North America!  We finished our class reader: Shadow by Michael Morpurgo, which proved incredibly popular with the children and has helped them to try to understand and empathise with others less fortunate than themselves.  We’ve also started our next class reader: Holes by Louis Sachar, which we are going to study in greater depth in our English lessons. 

We were treated to some shiny new footballs this week (thank you Mr Elliott) for our current PE unit – isn’t it strange how the quality of the football improves instantly with new footballs – perhaps we should share our findings with Steve Bruce!  We also talked about the qualities and attitude that we should strive to demonstrate when we play sport and how being kind and responsible will ensure that everyone enjoys and engages in the sessions.

Kindness and responsibility were also the themes of our computing lesson this week when we looked at our online behaviour and the things we need to consider to keep us safe and to ensure that we are not spending too much of our time online.

We were also incredibly proud this week of Liam for completing the Junior Great North Run in a super fast time, and of James for his success at the Durham County Cricket trials.

Well done North America – you’ve worked your socks off this week; I hope you have a relaxing and restful weekend.

Mrs McK

Friday 10th September 2021

North America class should be really proud of themselves this week.  They have returned to school, after a difficult year, with a fantastic approach to - and appreciation of - their school life.  We’ve been busy finding out all about North America; we’ve made some American fluffy pancakes and we’ve also created some beautiful (and really funny) poems about what we did and didn’t do in the summer holidays.

We ended our week with a real treat: we went to see ‘history in the making’ when the Tour of Britain cycle race went through Crawcrook this afternoon.  The children were in good voice and even managed to engage the police motorcyclists with a Mexican wave!  I’m really looking forward to the rest of the year with them.

Mrs McK