Redscope Primary School, Rotherham
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Redscope Primary School

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Autumn Term

Autumn Term 2nd Half


We continued our space topic with a focus on the book and film ‘Hidden Figures’. By reading the book and watching the film, the children learnt about the true-life story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the United States space program. The children learnt about the history of NACA and NASA and the United States race against Russia to put a man in space. We researched the talent of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Katherine Johnson who quickly rose the ranks of NASA on the task of calculating the momentous launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, and guaranteeing his safe return.


Linking with Black History, we learnt about the segregation and treatment the black people endured and how Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Katherine Johnson crossed all gender, race, and professional lines while their brilliance and desire to dream big.

Within literacy, we completed a film review after watching Hidden Figures and then used the film and various other sources to research Katherine Johnson’s life and achievements to write a biography. We then completed our space topic by researching ET life and deciding whether we agreed or disagreed with it existing.  The children worked in groups, who had the same opinion as them, to create a persuasive speech. The groups used IT and produced a PowerPoint to support their speeches. We were very impressed with their final presentations.

In art, we focussed on portraits. We looked at the skill of using complex shapes and lines from observation and a range of tones including shadows. In our sketchbook, we refined and rehearsed drawing skills before working on a sustained piece of a pencil drawing of Katherine Johnson. We have also developed our pastel blending skills to create some Tree-rific Christmas cards which we hope you enjoyed receiving.

In maths, we completed Power Maths Unit 3 on addition and subtraction. This unit allowed children to apply the formal methods of addition and subtraction to numbers with up to five digits. The range of problem solving questions we completed, including mentally, developed the children’s confidence and flexibility when exploring the most efficient ways to add and subtract.


We decided to decorate our Classroom tree through the creation of Reindeer candy cane inspired Christmas tree decorations. The children had free choice to design and make their own unique decoration and they looked fabulous on our Class tree. 


Christmas in school has been an eventful and fun experience for the children. They have worked hard to learn how to sign Little Donkey and songs for our outdoor Christmas concert. It was lovely to see so many families enjoy the performance despite the rainy weather.


We have been very impressed by the quality of home learning projects produced this half term and would like to thank you for your support. 

Autumn Term 1st Half


All of the children were very excited to get back into school and begin Year 5, they have settled into the new routines very well. 


The theme of our first topic this year has been Journey into Space. This topic has really grasped the children’s imagination and through this they have engaged with the learning and produced some fantastic work. We have looked at the skills of pencil control and how to achieve tone and texture within our art work. We also looked at using and mixing paints correctly to achieve the perfect palette of colours for our work. This skill was then applied to create some fantastic abstract art work of images of rockets and space, which was inspired by the art of Peter Thorpe. 


The Journey into Space topic, has also led to some fascinating scientific exploration and discoveries for the children. They have been exploring our solar system and finding out lots of amazing facts about the planets and moons within it. We have explored many different scientific concepts through investigations such as why we have gravity and who discovered it, how scientists eventually came to the conclusion that all the planets are spherical bodies, why it is we have day and night and also the different phases of the moon. In addition to this, the children have also used the geographical skills to explore what our planet looks like from space. They have used images taken by astronauts alongside atlases to identify where certain physical features are on our planet, such as continents, mountain ranges, rivers countries and cities.


Within literacy, Year 5 wrote space themed poetry, exploring the patterns and language of free verse poetry and raps. Continuing with space as our inspiration the children wrote some fantastic sci-fi stories, exploring the language and discovering plots of stories set in imaginary worlds, following on to plan and write their own narrative of a sci-fi voyage. The children then became journalists and their task was to report on the first moon landing. We watched documentary footage of the First Moon Landing on 20th July 1969 and researched facts. From gathering all their notes the children wrote newspaper articles. To further develop our research skills, in small groups, the children used iPads to research the work of the Scientist, Galileo.  The children were then asked how they could present their research effectively resulting in some fabulous informative posters. The final task was to create and present a presentation about Galileo to the rest of their peers. The presentations were very informative and interesting to watch.


In school this year we have adopted a maths scheme called Power Maths to support our teaching of maths. Power Maths is a resource that has been designed for UK schools and is built on the belief that EVERYONE can learn maths successfully. Unit 1 focused on Place Value building on Year 4 work on numbers within 10,000 to further develop children’s sense of number, working with numbers within 100,000. Unit 2 recapped the children’s understanding of numbers up to 10,000 and 100,000s.  We also developed fluency with these numbers by partitioning and recombining them in di­fferent ways and comparing and ordering them. We also worked on the understanding of rounding numbers and negative numbers and how they relate and compare to positive numbers. Finally, the children used their ability to count in regular steps to help them identify rules in number sequences and accurately follow and complete them.


We have also entered a Nestle competition as the company were recruiting mini Space bakers to design a new range of Rice Krispie treat with a space theme. The children designed their own Rice Krispie treat, followed a recipe to create the treat, designed and produced the packaging and most enjoyably of all ate and evaluated one another’s designs.   

Finally, we have completed a conservation project and focused on plastic pollution in the oceans. We worked as a Year group to produce an informative piece of artwork about the damage plastic causes in the oceans and what we can do to help the situation.