Emmaville Primary School

South America Yr 6

Welcome to the South America Year 6 Class Page.  Here, you can find out about everything that we've been doing this year.
Friday 8th April
This week, we had our final session working on our History Detectives project with Jill and Tommy to produce our walking guide for the local area. 
In our previous session, we had to produce a drawing of a local landmark, and then Tommy took all of the images back to his studio to scan and put together to create a Crawcrook collage, incorporating the artwork from each Year 6 child. We were blown away with how effective it looked. 
Friday 1st April
This week has ben enrichment week, focusing on the theme of diversity. This little video below helps to illustrate an important message; we need everyone to help the world go round. 

Friday 25th March
Things are all go in Year 6 at the moment, as the end of Key Stage 2 assessments are nearing. I just wanted to commend all of the children for their amazing attitude to their learning, and the resilience that they are showing. There is a lot to learn and remember but they just keep on going! We had a glorious afternoon on Friday, with a well earned afternoon playing rounders in the sunshine. A perfect moment to have fun, and enjoy the good weather together to celebrate the end of a successful week. 
Friday 18th March
Another week which has flown by in Year 6, with lots going on as ever! In English, we started a new writing unit looking at writing warning stories. When we start a unit of writing, we begin with a cold task, and I must say that one of the many pleasures of being a Year 6 teacher, is seeing how amazingly the children's writing skills develop during their time at school, and as a result of this, the standard of a cold task, is already very high! I was particularly blown away by Lois' story, who started to tell the tale of an experimental scientist. Read the start of her story here:
It was a fine day in May when I was experimenting with several reptiles in my laboratory. My colleague came up to me and said imploringly, "Please don't mix the genes of those creatures. They could combine and create a monster! The outcome could be catastrophic!" I payed him no heed. I was going to continue, and I didn't care what he said. 
I was using the genes of an armadillo lizard, a winged lizard and a spider snake to create a brand-new reptile. Or that was what I hoped to happen, anyway. In reality, it turned out much, much worse. 
I had heard tales of dragons, mighty mythical beasts with hides as tough as armour. But none had actually existed until that moment when the genes fused together and formed an odd-looking winged creature with large, spiky scales. It had menacing fangs and hundreds of smaller teeth. I had created a small devil. 
The dragon roamed around the lab, biting my colleagues who instantly dropped dead on the floor. I, and what assistant I had left, were amazed at the potency of the dragon's venom and how quickly it could kill. We all moved backwards, except for one bold assistant who grabbed the creature at arms length from behind and locked it in a concealment chamber. The creature writhed and hissed, trying to escape. 
Friday 11th March
This week, we have had our second session of a local history project we are currently involved in. The final outcome of the project is going to be to contribute to a map for a family walking route in the local area, with key areas of interest identified along the route. 
The children are working with local history experts and an artist to create this finished product. The children had a half term challenge to find out more about their local area, and this week, we had the chance to ask Jill and John lots of questions about these different points of interest. We then worked with artist Tommy to start developing the illustrations for the map. The illustrations are a working process, but I thought they were too good not to share at this point! Have a look at the ones below, and watch closely in the upcoming weeks to see how the project is progressing. 
Friday 4th March
We have had a wonderful week back at school after the half term holidays, with lots going on as usual! Thursday was World Book Day, which is always a much enjoyed day in school. It was lovely to see the whole school dressed as their favourite book characters, and engaging with lots of different activities. Each class had the challenge of changing their classroom door into a book cover, and we focused on Dr Seuss' "Oh, the places you'll go!" which we thought was relevant, as the children get nearer their next step of education. We also took part in a wonderful workshop with poet Michael Rosen. He has such a way with words, and performs with such expression; there was plenty of laughter filling the room. 
We have also really enjoyed our English lessons this week. In Year 6, we have been part of a writing project called "Imagine a Story". 
This project was organised by the Southbank Centre, and involves lots of schools across Newcastle and London. The plot line was written by children's author, Alexandra Sheppard, and the story is titled "Mayhem at the Museum". Each school has been given a different chapter to write, with key plot points to consider. All of these chapters will then be put together, and made into a book, with our children's names printed in as contributing authors. Later in the year, we will be invited to a live reading of the book with the author and the illustrator, and also have a chance to meet some of the other children involved in the project and we will all receive our own copy of the book. We are very excited about the project, and think that it is a great thing to be involved in!
Friday 18th February
In South America class, we love our computing sessions, and have been excited to get going with our current project. Year 6 are taking part in the Young Coders competition, where the children have to use a programme called Scratch to create a game; this year, the theme of the competition is "My World, Our Planet". The children have started by analysing pre-existing games, debugging code and exploring options such as adding variables to create a score. When we get back after half term, we will be working on designing and developing our own games, so watch this space to see some of the finished products in a few weeks time!
Friday 11th February
We have had a great week in class this week, where the children have shown great maturity and engaged in some great discussions as we explored both Safer Internet Day and Children's Mental Health Week. 
As we all know, it has been a very uncertain time over the last few years and this has had an impact on people's mental health and has also resulted in many people increasing the amount of time they spend online, which is why we thought it was so important to discuss and address within school. 
On Safer Internet Day, we learnt all about SMART rules to stay safe online:
- Be safe
- Don't meet up
- Don't accept things from people you don't know
- Is the website reliable?
- Tell someone if you feel uncomfortable
We had a competition within class to create posters to remind people of these rules, and the winning design is going to be used as the wallpaper and lock screen on our class iPads to remind us to stay safe every time we go online. Here is our winning design, which I am sure you will agree is eye-catching, and a great way to remind us of the rules. 
Friday 4th February
We have had another great week in South America class; we have started a new unit looking at persuasive writing in English, started our plans for to enter the Young Coders competition and made great progress with our work in fractions, decimals and percentages in maths. 
However, it was our learning in Geography that really stood out. Over the past few weeks, we have been learning all about the seas and oceans and this week, we started to consider the threats that they face. We briefly discussed plastic pollution, which we will look at in more detail in our upcoming lesson, but this week we focused on overfishing. 
We set up a practical investigation where we created fishing villages, where we each had our own boat and a shared sea filled with "fish" (also known as skittles) that each had a different value associated with them. We were set the challenge of trying to be the profitable fishing village. 
We quickly learnt lessons about sustainability after some groups nearly depleted their supplies of fish in Year One. We discussed that with depleted supplies, there would be no opportunity for the fish to reproduce and replenish the stocks; therefore, this would result in reduced levels of profit in subsequent years. We were given the opportunity to return some fish to the sea after Year One to see what impact this would then have on future years. 
It was an enjoyable lesson, where we learnt about the importance of overfishing and sustainability. 
Friday 28th January
There has been lots going on this week, as ever, in Year 6. We had a great science lesson using some resources from Newcastle University to explore adaptation and evolution. We looked at replica bird skulls and thought about how their adaptations helped them to survive.
We continued our learning in Music exploring Fingal's Cave by Felix Mendelssohn and had a go at creating sounds to represent waves in small groups using a range of tuned and untuned percussion; we did this by varying the texture, pitch or dynamics of the sounds we were making and then looked at how these could be represented using a graphic score. 
We have also completed our art project for the half term looking at propaganda posters. We started by analysing a range of propaganda posters, and then have designed our own or recreated well known designs, before carefully painting these with watercolours. I am sure you will agree that some of the finished products look fantastic. 
Friday 14th January
Another busy week in school, and the children continue to show a positive attitude to their learning. We really enjoyed our Art session this week, which linked to one of our History topics this year - World War 2. We looked at a selection of propaganda posters that were used during the war in different countries and discussed the purpose of the posters as well as how they were designed to catch people's eyes and make them feel different emotions. We completed some work in our sketch books analysing some of the propaganda posters, and then next week, are going to start designing and painting our own.
Friday 7th January
It has been lovely to return to school and hear stories about all of the lovely things that the children had been up to over the Christmas holidays. They have returned to the classroom well rested, and ready to learn. As ever, it has been a busy week in school, and we have got straight back into the swing of things.
We have started a new unit in English based around the story of Street Child, which is also helping to build upon our History topic of the Victorians. In PSHE, we thought about our targets for the upcoming year, both in school and outside of school, and the steps we would need to take in order to achieve these. 
We particularly enjoyed our computing session this week where we started to learn how to organise and present data using Microsoft Excel. Here are some of the charts we created about a subject area of our choice. 
Friday 17th December
This week, we have had the nicest week leading up the Christmas holidays. The classroom has been filled with the sound of cheesy Christmas classics, laughter and general merriment as we have eaten Christmas dinner, made Christmas crafts, enjoyed our Christmas party and also learnt about the true meaning of Christmas. 
I just want to wish you all a very merry Christmas, and look forward to seeing you all in 2022. I am excited to see what the new year brings, and see all of the things that you achieve. 
Friday 10th December
At Emmaville, we really look forward to enrichment weeks, as they give us the opportunity to explore a subject area in great detail. This week has been STEM enrichment week, and it is clear we have a lot of budding scientists, engineers and mathematicians in our midst. We have had lots of fun working in teams to complete different challenges which were set for us during the week including creating music using a coding programme called Sonic Pi, designing and building catapults for accuracy and exploring how different everyday items work using a book called Until I Met Dudley. 
A real highlight for us, however, was using a programme called Stop Motion Studio to create our own short animations. This used a technique called stop motion animation which uses a series of still images put together to make it seem like an object is animated; it is the same technique used in well loved programmes such as Wallace and Gromit.  I have included a few examples below and I am sure you will be just as impressed as I was. 

Friday 3rd December
We really can't believe how quickly this term is going, but we are all looking forward to the exciting things we have to look forward to over the next couple of weeks.
This week, we have had another great week in school. We have been working on a narrative poetry unit all about The Highwayman in English and the enthusiasm which the children have shown for this has really impressed me. We have had many theories about where the blame lies, which have been pondered in English lessons, but also discussed on walks to school and thought about in the middle of the night! It has been a total pleasure to be involved in these lessons.
We also had a very enjoyable music lesson this week, which linked to our learning about WW2 in history this year and also WW1, which the children learnt all about in Year 5. We discussed the purpose of music during the wars and discovered that music in WW1 was mainly to try and keep up morale, and forget about their worries, whereas music in WW2 was more sentimental, seen to offer hope and understand the feelings of those who were affected by the war effort. Click on the images below to listen to these songs. 
We then spent time comparing and contrasting these songs, and looked at some of the musical terms that are used when performing a song such as adagio - slow, allegro - quick, amoroso - loving, animato - animated and lively, and legato - smoothly. 
Friday 26th November
We were delighted to be invited to participate in the Walk and Talk Trust initiative. The charity does a splendid job of encouraging people to enjoy walking and exploring the countryside.
As part of the initiative, members of the Emmaville staff completed a 11.5 mile walk up High Cup Nick. We were sponsored by family, friends, parents and carers, which enabled us 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. As the song goes, ‘Those boots were meant for walking’ and that is exactly what we intend encouraging the children to do. The children received their boots in a special presentation assembly this week. 
We want them to put their screens aside, and spend more time in the fresh air, wandering round our beautiful countryside, spotting wildlife at the same time as improving their health and wellbeing. Many thanks to Geoff Simpson and Keiron Young from the Walk and Talk Trust for inspiring us, and a big shout out to Jose from Decathalon Sport for providing our children with their amazing footwear. We will be going for our first walk next week! Let's keep our fingers crossed for good weather. 
We also had an enjoyable Computing lesson this week thinking about reliability and validity of information on the internet. We came up with a list of things we should do when checking if a website is safe and reliable such as checking who wrote it, where the website found their information and looking at when the website was written or last updated. We also had a good laugh looking at some websites, such as this one about Annual Apple Crumble Day (!) and thought about any warning signs that would suggest that the information wasn't totally reliable!
We then had the discussion about copyright laws, and dos and don'ts online; we used a 21st century digital compass to think about what we would do in different situations and whether responses to certain scenarios would be right or wrong. 
Wednesday 17th November
What a week we have had, and it is only Wednesday! Today, we have had the complete pleasure of working with author and storyteller, Adam Bushnell. Adam has worked with us for many years at Emmaville, and each time he visits, children and staff alike are left feeling inspired and bursting with ideas. 
This session was structured around World War 2, our current history topic. Adam shared rare video footage of the Blitz, images and artefacts which all helped to inspire some amazing creative writing. The look of awe and excitement as each artefact was unveiled was truly a special moment. 
We were also set a very special task this week by Miss Armstrong. 
Mrs Hammersley, who has been a supply teacher with us for many years, has changed her career so will no longer be working with us. As a leaving gift to us all, she wrote us a poem all about our school. 
Miss Armstrong gave us the task of learning and performing this poem to be shared with the wider community, so we hope you enjoy our finished version, which you can watch below. 

Friday 12th November
Another great week in South America class; the children continue to show a great attitude to their learning. We have had a lot of fun in our English lessons this week, learning about stories including flashbacks. We are busy adapting the Three Little Pigs into a 1st person, flashback narrative; I will add some finished versions of these to our class page next week. 
As part of this unit of work, we completed some short burst, descriptive writing about the wolf, using this image for inspiration. 
We discussed carefully selecting vocabulary in order to create powerful images. Here is Chloe's example:
Ears pinned back, twitching but listening for any movement ahead. 
Arched back, preparing to pounce and destroy its prey. 
Flaming amber eyes, fixed on its victim, waiting for the right time attack. 
Blood soaked muzzle, dripping the warm remnants of its last meal. 
Crimson red teeth, ready to tear apart more flesh, 
Menacing growl, snarling at its enemy, warning them that he's coming. 
Beware: the wolf wants you tonight!
Friday 5th November
What a total pleasure it has been to be back in school. We had a busy start to Year 6, and it sounds like the children have had a thoroughly enjoyable week off, recharging their batteries for this upcoming half term. I have been so impressed with the attitude the children have shown across the curriculum this week, and they have particularly shone in maths. We have been learning the formal method for long division - a notoriously tricky mathematical concept; however, with the determination shown by these children, there was no stopping them!
We also enjoyed learning about the Industrial Revolution in History, and looked at the different key factors involved including population boom, development of transport and factories, increase of British Empire and advances in power. The children then had to debate using their developing oracy skills about which they felt was the most important factor in the Industrial Revolution. It was a pleasure to watch the discussion unfold and see the children agree, build on or challenge each other's ideas. 
Friday 15th October
Another busy and enjoyable week in Year 6. In maths, we have shown great growth mindset as we approached tasks involving long multiplication; in English, we have started a nonfiction unit learning about non-chronological reports and in science, we have developed our understanding of light further. 
On Wednesday, we had a very enjoyable afternoon at Thorp Academy, taking part in a rotation of outdoor sporting activities, organised by Year 9 sports leaders. It is always such a pleasure to see ex-Emmavillian pupils being such wonderful role models to our current pupils, and Wednesday afternoon was a great example of that. We had lots of fun as we jumped, skipped, ran, dribbled and sprinted our way through the afternoon. 
Friday 8th October
Another jam-packed, and thoroughly  enjoyable week in South America class. Thursday was National Poetry Day, and across school, we have all spent our English lessons for the week reading, listening to, performing and writing different many different poems. We also took part in a hilarious workshop with poet Michael Rosen on Thursday, where we really enjoyed thinking about how we can play with words and sounds to entertain an audience. 
All classes also had the task of recording some performance poetry, and in Year 6, we performed 'Poetry Pie' by Roger McGough. This poem was chosen for us because it helped to sum up all of the many different types of poetry being performed by the rest of the school. I was so impressed with the confidence and expression displayed by the children; all of that oracy work is truly paying off. We hope you enjoy watching our video below. 

Friday 1st October
It's weeks like this that remind us just what we have all missed out on over the last 18 months. On Tuesday, we were fortunate enough to go on a school trip to the Victoria Tunnel in Ouseburn to launch our local history study. We eagerly boarded the bus, and there was a real sense of excitement in the air, and what a wonderful morning we had. The staff at the tunnel seemed to be just as excited as us as they explained that we were the first school visit which had gone ahead since the start of the pandemic; something which we were very appreciative of. 
The visit was a great success, and such a good way to learn about history through some real experiences. We had a guided tour of the Victoria Tunnel, which was originally built to transport coal. However, during WW2, this was used as an air raid shelter for people living in the local area. We learnt many fascinating facts about what it would have been like sheltering in the crowded tunnel, along with 7,000 others. 
This experience was made even more real to us through our conversation with Basil, who was a true inspiration to us all. Basil is 92 years old, and was 10 years old when WW2 broke out. He told us all about how he was evacuated to Barnard Castle, and how he spent time in the Victoria Tunnel during air raids. His memory is incredible, and we all listened with intent as he recalled many stories, and shared original artefacts with us. 
A truly brilliant day for Year 6, who represented Emmaville brilliantly throughout. 
Friday 24th September
Another busy week in South America class, from school council elections, to debut football tournaments, it has been all go! After the disruptions of the past 18 months, it was very exciting to send our Year 6 football team off to their first interschool tournament on Thursday evening. We have talked a lot in class about the importance of teamwork, and good sportsmanship, and it filled us with pride to hear the team displayed these qualities throughout the evening. This effective teamwork then resulted in a resounding win for the Emmaville  Year 6s - a wonderful way to start the year!
This week, we continued with our DT project and learnt a new sewing technique - blanket stitch. It was such a pleasure to see the children display such good growth mindset, as it was a bit of a challenge at first, but with some "stickability", South America succeeded! We will be able to use this technique when it comes to making our final product. 
Friday 17th September
This week, we started an English unit focused on describing a setting. I have been blown away with the children's use of language, and how they managed to paint a picture in the reader's mind. Have a read of Molly's extract; I am sure you will see what I mean! 
Friday 10th September
What a privilege it has been to return to work after the Summer holidays, and spend a week with a bunch of such lovely Year 6 children. It has been a pleasure to watch as they have settled straight back into school life and catch up with their friends, sharing stories about the adventures they have been on during their break. 
This week, we have spent plenty of time chatting and catching up whilst we have drawn, read, researched and baked. We then finished our week with a real treat; we had the opportunity to go and watch the Tour of Britain cycle race. The famous Emmaville roar could be heard as we whooped and cheered as the cyclists whizzed past us and on into Greenside. This was a real memorable experience for the children, and a wonderful way to end their first week in Year 6. I just know it's going to be a great year.