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Year 5 - Emmeline Pankhurst Class

Year 5 Spring 1 Curriculum Information

Welcome back Year Five and a happy new year to you all! I hope that everybody has had a restful holiday and is excited to be back at school.

Our class read for this half-term is the famous story ‘Romeo and Juliet’ written by William Shakespeare. It is a tragic love story where the two main characters, Romeo, and Juliet, are supposed to be sworn enemies but fall in love. Due to their families' ongoing conflict, they cannot be together.  This story explores many different themes including fate, honour, friendship, duality and of course love.  All of these themes are still relevant today, which is why this play is still popular after all of these years.

The children will also have the opportunity to listen to a variety of picture books including Migration written by Mike Unwin and Jenni Desmond which follows the amazing migrations of 20 incredible creatures.  The children will also listen to the book ‘The cow who Climbed a Tree,’ by Gemma Meino.  This is a wonderful book which explores the theme of trying new things – a perfect book to start the new year off!

This half- term our non-narrative writing will focus on biography writing where the children will continue to develop a range of key writing skills. The English lessons will be heavily complemented by our science lessons as we learn about Living Things and the work of David Attenborough and Jane Goodall. Our narrative writing will focus on Anthony Browne’s ‘Gorilla’ story. Anthony Browne's incomparable artwork illuminates the deeply satisfying story of a lonely girl, a friendly gorilla, and their enchanted night out.

 During the Spring term - the children will continue to develop their maths and scientific skills. In maths, the children will be focusing on developing their multiplication, division and fraction knowledge. In science, the children will be studying ‘Living Things’ where they will be learning about different life-cycles of different plants and animals including mammals, amphibians, insects and birds. During their learning, the children will be thinking about our big question: ‘What would happen to living things without a lifecycle?  


In our Geography lessons this term we will be learning about UK Geography: East Anglia, The Midlands, Yorkshire, and Humberside and how the topography is different in these locations. In History, we move away from the British Empire and start learning about the French Revolution, where there are some interesting battles to learn about. In particular the children will be learning about Napolean and answering our ‘Big Question’ -How did Napolean’s values and motivation change, over the course of the French Revolution?

The children will also have the wonderful opportunity to develop their creative skills in art where they will be studying Chinese paintings and ceramics. They will become familiar with examples of Chinese art, including: silk scrolls, calligraphy, brush writing and painting porcelain. Our art days are also a hit with the children!  

The children will also have the opportunity to develop their music skills by learning about composing and chords.   They will be listening to a few classics such as Freedom is coming by Public Domain, Forever Always by Mpumi Dhlamini and All Over Again by Joanna Mangona and Pete Readman.


We have many more wonderful things planned this half term including: World Religion day, exploring in our RE lessons whether Sikh stories are still important today. We will be considering our dreams and goals and looking at whether these vary across cultures. We will think about the importance of having a job, motivation and how money impacts on the world we live in.

The children will also have the opportunity to go swimming this half-term and receive basketball training from a basketball specialist called Neil Atkins.    Let the learning commence!

Year 5 Autumn 2 Curriculum Information

After a great first half term, I am very excited to welcome the class back.  Our class read for this half-term will be three classic stories condensed into shorter reads. Our first read is about Robinson Crusoe - a true story of a Scotsman who was left on a desert island after a quarrel with the captain of his ship. Robinson Crusoe is shipwrecked and survives for nearly thirty years on an island often visited by cannibals, before he is finally offered a chance to escape. A perfect book to explore one of our key school values of resilience.

Our second read focuses on the classic tale Black Beauty. Black Beauty is about a handsome well-born, well- bred horse who narrates the story.  He is initially owned by kind owners but is sold to owners who do not treat him well. Eventually he collapses from overwork and ill treatment, but in the end recovers. While the key theme of this story is about animal welfare, it also teaches us how to treat people with kindness, sympathy and respect – something that we continuously try and do at our time at ‘The Grove.’

Our final short story ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ is an adventure story (in reality, a misadventure story) involving several voyages of Lemuel Gulliver, a ship's surgeon, who, because of a series of mishaps en route to recognised ports, ends up, instead, on several unknown islands living with people and animals of unusual sizes, behaviours, and philosophies, but who, after each adventure, is somehow able to return to his home in England where he recovers from these unusual experiences and then sets out again on a new voyage.


In English last term, our writing focused on refugeeism and current issues such as homelessness. This term, during our non-fiction writing, we will be writing about the tallest mountain on the planet ‘Mount Everest’. We will have the opportunity to read the picture book ‘First to the Top’ which is about Edmund Hillary and his sherpa Tenzing Norgay being the first people in history to reach the summit of Everest. The English lessons will be heavily complemented by our geography lessons as we are learning about mountains.   Our big question for geography is ‘Where are different mountains located?’


Our history topic this term is ‘The Early British Empire’ and how Britain created an empire across the globe. We are very lucky to have a historian from Creative Learning Services to join us in class to teach us how to think like historians and source different types of evidence. The big question for history will focus on, Do British Values extend further than Great Britain? This will enable the class to look in detail at other countries that were part of the empire.


During the Autumn term - the children will continue to develop their maths and scientific skills. In maths, we will be focusing on developing our multiplication and division knowledge. In science, we will be looking at different types of ‘materials’ where at the end of the term the pupils will be answering the big question ‘Why do materials have different properties and states of matter? In science lessons, we will be completing a variety of experiments and investigations and learning how to carry out a fair test. 


The children will also have the wonderful opportunity to develop their creative skills in design and technology where they will be looking at structures and designing and building a bridge.  They will also have the opportunity to continue learning the clarinet in music lessons.


We have many more wonderful things planned this half term; including exploring whether the Christmas story is true during RE lessons, learning about celebrating differences in our PSHE lessons and learning how to play cricket from a professional cricketer in our PE lessons.  Towards the end of the term, we will also be preparing for Christmas by making and decorating decorations for the ‘Christmas Tree Festival’ and for our Christmas bizarre.  Let the learning commence!

Year 5 Autumn 1 Curriculum Information

We have an exciting half-term planned. Our class read will be based on the ‘Windrush Child’ which is written by the author Benjamin Zephaniah.  Benjamin describes the book as "historical, fiction, but true story" and it is about a young boy's journey from Jamaica to England. The character in the book Leonard finds himself in complete shock when he and his mother arrive off the ship to find themselves in Southampton port. His Father, who is living in Manchester already, moved from Jamaica to better his life for him and his family, however Leonard struggles to adapt to life in England and not really knowing his Father. The book follows an exhilarating journey which opens the eyes to the reader to all the issues people face trying to ‘better themselves’ by moving country. This is a story which is extremely relatable to some members of our class who have moved from a different country.  It also highlights the current issues that our going on in our world today. This book allows us to explore all of our school values including resilience, courage and perseverance.  This novel also nicely links to our Personal, Social and Health and Education lessons where we are looking at ‘Being Me in My World’. The children will also have the wonderful opportunity to listen to the story from the picture book ‘The Proudest Blue’ which focuses on the theme of ‘family’ and the wearing of the ‘Hijab’ and our ‘Everyone’s Welcome’ book Stevie Wonder – ‘Little People, Big Dreams.’ 


In English, we are following a similar kind of story to our class novel. The fascinating picture book is called ‘The Journey’, which follows a family trying to flee conflict. This book will be the base to our English writing lessons. Our writing will follow the journey of a family fleeing the area of conflict, which will then result in the children doing an independent write about a new beginning.



Throughout the first half term, the children will be learning lots of information, developing skills and carrying out research on a variety of topics.  In history, we are going to be focusing on the civilisation of Ancient Baghdad, where we will be looking at the rise of Islam. The children will learn how Baghdad was the centre of learning during the golden ages in the year 900CE. They will understand that Baghdad was home to the first universities, hospitals and the largest library ‘House of Wisdom’ in the world and that many scholars travelled to this amazing circular city to study. The class will also take part in some drama and look at how Baghdad was destroyed by the Mongols leaving the river Tigris completely black from the ink from the ‘House of Wisdom’. As we learn about this interesting area of history, the children will be answering the question ‘Why is Baghdad so important to Muslims?’


For our Geography lessons, we are going to focus on ‘Spatial Sense’ which means the study of the locations of things, the conditions at different places, and the connections between places. Thinking about the world in spatial terms (spatial thinking) will allow the children to describe and analyse the spatial patterns and organisation of people, places, and environments on Earth. From their learning, the children will able to answer our big question ‘How do maps help us to locate places?’


During the first part of the Autumn term - the children will continue to develop their scientific skills.  They will learn about ‘The Human Body’ and how the human body changes from being a baby right up to being old age.  Throughout our learning this half-term, we will be asking ourselves: How does our body change over time?                                              



The children will also have the wonderful opportunity to develop their creative skills in art, where they will be exploring art from Western Africa and understanding the spiritual significance and purpose of many African works of art.  They will also have the wonderful opportunity to learn how to play the clarinet in their music lessons as well as developing their knowledge about melody and harmony.


We have many more wonderful things planned this half term: including participating in a day which remembers the fantastic author Roald Dahl;  a career chat from a scientist who works for the NHs, a book-talking session which will provide some wonderful information about which books to read and participating in a creative writing workshop. What a fabulous and interesting start to year five! Let the learning commence.