Windrush Valley Preparatory School Oxfordshire – Year 5
BA(Hons) QTS, Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead (DDSL) and Headteacher
Windrush Valley Preparatory School Oxfordshire
Moving into Upper Key Stage Two is an exciting time as pupils and parents embark on a two year challenge to be ready socially and academically for secondary school. In the classroom it is important for children to become more independent and confident in tackling increasingly challenging work. In order to this successfully, the class are taught to work carefully and rigorously, utilising important learning skills such as planning, prediction, perseverance, independence, imagination, resilience, revision, collaboration and making links. Out of the classroom it is important for children to become more independent in organising and remembering their belongings and equipment. They are encouraged to know their own timetable, pack and carry their own bags, learn to accept the consequences of forgetting and enjoy the peace of mind of being able to remember.
Maths in Form 5 begins to extend the pupils’ understanding of the number system and place value of numbers to at least 1,000,000. Increased focus is placed on developing their ability to solve a range of problems by being able to use efficient written and mental methods of calculating. Continuing to use the core resource – Target Your Maths ensures the children are rigorously taught the national curriculum objectives in a cohesive order.
Developing literacy skills in Form 5, with the end goal of coping with the general demands of the year 7 curriculum, means that reading (which should by now be mostly effortless) must continue to be done widely and frequently at home. In school, pupils will read a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts of increasing complexity as they continue to develop their comprehension, language and grammar skills. These developing skills will be used in their independent writing and their speaking and listening skills will be tested by taking their English Speaking Board (ESB) exam in the first term.
Form 5 history continues in chronological order and topics studied in Form 5 will be The British Empire, The Age of Invention and finally a comparative study where the class will contrast the UK with either India, Africa or the Caribbean in the context of the British Empire studied earlier in the year.
Pupils in Form 5 have numerous opportunities open to them. In music, when they pass Grade 1 on a woodwind or brass instrument they will be invited to join the school band.
Act One (the autumn term) celebrates harvest at our Harvest Festival Assembly and inevitably December sees The Nativity Story performed in the local church.
Act Two (the New Year) kicks off in style as Forms 5 and 6 join the Young Voices choir at the Genting Arena, Birmingham. The Chipping Norton Music Festival in March allows the band and choir to perform publically and individuals may also enter solo classes in whichever available genre they are confident. The curtain falls on the spring term with a pantomime-style performance in the Chipping Norton Theatre.
The Final Act is in early May at our May Dancing afternoon. As the name suggests, plenty of traditional country dancing is on offer as well as the band and choirs’ performances.
PE and sport take place on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons. There is a wide range of sport on offer to Form 5 pupils through the year. Typically these include football, tag-rugby, cross- country running, netball, hockey, rounders and athletics. Additionally pupils continue to have a weekly swimming lesson. There are regular opportunities for children to be selected to compete against other schools in these sports.
The science and geography curriculum plan runs over a two year cycle and includes the new national curriculum objectives. Practical work and field studies are done outside and traditional ‘book work’ is completed in the classroom. Due to the outdoor focus of these lessons, topic planning is related to the seasons and weather. Therefore, from late October to March lessons are largely indoors. From April, through the summer term until October they will be outdoors.
In early October, pupils in Year 5 (along with Year 4 and Year 6) have the opportunity to go on a 5 day residential trip. There are 3 different trips so that pupils who wish to go every year do not repeat a visit. Other local trips are organised throughout the academic year (usually) in support of history or geography topics.
While spelling rules and patterns are taught and practised in class, common exception words are learned throughout the term and tested, along with times tables, on Fridays. Maths and English homework, which generally consolidates the week’s learning is set on Friday and due in the following Thursday.