Your children may have told you that we do spelling tests slightly differently now. Each child has their own independent spelling list that they choose 10 spellings from each week (with guidance) and they are tested independently by myself or Mrs Callaghan a week later. Spelling sentences are still due in on Thursday. A few children seem to be forgetting that they should use a variety of sentence structures - 3 simple sentences, 3 compound sentences, 3 complex sentences and another of their choice. Since September, there has been an example sheet in the front of their spelling books in case they need a reminder. It's also important that the children take care to spell the words they are meant to be learning correctly in their sentences. A small number of children don't check that their spelling words are correct, so please could you encourage them to get into the habit of re-reading their sentences to ensure that those words in particular are spelled correctly. Many thanks.
Please keep up with your reading and make sure you've learned your spellings for the test next week.
Here are the spellings for this week. Again, I have included words that are frequently misspelled in the children's writing, or they have a misunderstanding about the whether the word is made up of 1 or 2 words. They may appear easy - in fact many of the children think they are too easy - however, when they write at length these are the words that are constantly spelled incorrectly. I have no doubt that when they sit the spelling test next week, many children will get 10 out of 10, but the skill of transferring that knowledge and application will only happen if they write the spellings out many times during the forthcoming week so it embeds in their muscle memory and becomes automatic. Please encourage your children to practise frequently writing out their spellings so that the movement of writing the word becomes embedded in their memory.
Spellings for 13th January.
I have chosen these spellings because they are constantly being misspelled in the children's writing and they really are words that everyone should know how to spell. If you can help at home by placing post-it notes around their bedroom or other areas in the house where they can perhaps be absorbed by osmosis, it would be most appreciated.
The best way for the children to get these correct all the time is to retrain their motor memory by writing them out over and over again, so it becomes automatic.
A big thank you to all the children who completed their spelling sentences by Thursday 12th January (the day they were due in) and had bothered to find out the meaning of each word so their sentences made sense.
The spelling sentences for these new spellings are due in on the 19th January. We remind the children on a daily basis to take their spelling books home and every day we ask whether people have started their sentences yet, so there really is no excuse for children choosing not to complete them in the week they are given.
Please can you support the school by ensuring that this work is done.
It is important that children start to take responsibility for their learning and accept the consequences for choosing not to do their work, they know that they have to stay in at break to complete their sentences if they are not done by the due date.
Thank you for your support.
Spellings for week beginning 6th January 2017
Spelling sentences to be completed and handed in on Thursday 12th January. Test will be Friday 13th January.
Reading - I have spoken to the children about my expectations for the use of their Reading Log and they know it will be checked every day. Most children have made an excellent start with this, so thank you. The children really need to get into the habit of reading every night for at least 25/30mins. This needs to be a mixture of the child reading to an adult/older sibling etc at least 3 times a week (with that person signing their reading Log); the child reading silently with sustained concentration; shared reading, where an adult reads a section and then the child reads a section and you discuss it together. I will send home a helpful question prompt sheet that we use in school, so you can have some idea of the types of questions we would ask.
Spelling - I will give the children 10 new spellings each Friday and they will be tested on the following Friday. Please take a look at the sheet that is stuck on the inside cover of their spelling book so you know the expectations. The children need to write 10 spelling sentences during the week ready for marking on Thursday. It is very important that children know what each of the words mean, so please could they have access to a dictionary and thesaurus at home. The children really need to know the difference between the common homophones (words that sound the same but are spelled differently) that I sent home before the holidays and know when to use them in context.
General English - children will get 1 piece of English homework each week and they should be able to complete it independently. They should work on it for no longer than 30mins (sustained concentration) and in the majority of cases they will be able to complete it in much less time. Very often children's presentation of homework is not as good as it is in class, so could you please remind them to complete it to the best of their ability.
Maths - children will get 1 piece of maths homework each week and they should be able to complete it independently. children should work on it for no longer than 30mins (sustained concentration) and, as before, should be able to complete it in much less time.
Times table - the expectation of the new curriculum is that all children by the end of year 4 should be fluent with their times tables knowledge and recall for all tables up to and including 12 x 12. Therefore, if your child does not have this fluency it will be vital for them to learn their tables as soon as possible as they will find other areas in maths much more difficult to access.
I will be giving out the English and maths homework on Wednesday each week and I will want it back on the following Tuesday so I can mark it ready for their next piece of homework. I do appreciate that time is precious after school and that you are very busy; however, by year 5 the children need to be taking a growing responsibility for organising their own time so they can complete all of their homework to hand back in on the correct day. If there is a genuine reason why homework cannot be completed by the correct day please let me know in writing. I would ask that you don't make excuses for your child if they've simply forgotten, as they must accept the consequences of that and learn from it.
Thank you for you support.
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