Houghton Primary School

"Working hard to achieve our best"

Kestrels (Y4)


Kestrels Class are our Year 4 group.

They are taught by Mrs MacLennan on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays. They are taught by Mrs Read on  Fridays. They are both assisted by Mrs Macey and Mrs Anderson.

Please click here for information on the Year 4 Curriculum Autumn 2019

Summer 2020

Saturday 11th July 

Hello Kestrels, 

I've had a very exciting week this week because we have 2 new kittens. They are 12 weeks old and my children have named them Merry, (the ginger one) and Pippin, (black and white) 2 of the hobbits from Lord of the Rings. Our previous cat passed away a few months ago at the age of 17 years and 9 months and he was called Frodo, so we wanted to carry on the same theme! Here are a couple of pictures for you to enjoy, aren't they sweet!

kittens 2

kittens 3

We've also had some great excitment in the garden, harvesting potatoes! Its like digging for buried treasure, it is simply so exciting everytime you spot another. Freya got filthy but that's even more fun! We're going to eat them for dinner tonight- nothing like freshly dug spuds!

potatoes 3

potatoes 1











It was really wonderful to see many of you on Tuesday, I simply can't believe how you've all grown. I had lots of fun, it reminded me of the fantastic times we had in class, seeing all your smiley faces. I hope you enjoyed the party games as much as I did. Thank you for my special gifts also it's a lovely way to remember you all. I hope you all have a terrific summer.

Best wishes

Mrs MacLennan, Mrs Read, Mrs Macey and Mrs Anderson.

Sunday 5th July

Good Morning Kestrels,

I hope that you're all doing well this week. I am super pleased because my tomatoes have finally ripened and they taste so sweet, it has been worth the wait. My cucumbers are just about ready for picking too. And the peppers are the best I've ever grown, I'm waiting for them to turn yellow!

cucumbers 3











During the week, I was walking my dogs and I took this photo of Jetta running through the fields, she looked so happy I thought you might like to see it. 

cucumbers 1

Well done to everybody who is still keeping up with their home learning. There are still many of you getting 1000 points each week on Mathletics and growing your mutliplication monsters on Purple mash, as well as playing the other games and activities. I know it's not always easy working by yourself at home, Freya and Arran have both got a bit bored recently with the same old routine. It will be really worth it when you do come back to school and there's not long left now until the summer holidays! So give yourselves a BIG pat on the back and keep going for that final push!

I hope you all have a good week.

Best wishes 

Mrs MacLennan

Sunday 28th June

Finally, I've got a decent harvest from my garden! It can often feel like all I do is weed, water, pick out and plant on.... But finally this week I've harvested spring onions, spring greens, strawberries, raspberries and most excitedly of all my first ever crop of carrots! I've tried growing them before however after scattering the seeds on the ground, nothing has ever happened? They just seem to disappear but this time I've got a good amount of carrots and I'm serving them for tea this afternoon- what could be better! My tomatoes are also turning red thanks to the very hot, sunny days we've enjoyed this week and the cucumbers are almost big enough to harvest too! 

harvest 1

I hope that if you've been growing your own fruit and vegetables at home that you're also getting a good harvest!

Have a good week, keep safe

Best wishes 

Mrs MacLennan

Sunday 21st June 

Hello Kestrels,

I hope you're all well. I am afraid I rather need to "eat my words" from last week while I do enjoy the rain, especially a good summer downpour, even I've had enough this week! So has my garden, some of the plants are beginning to look a little be draggled under the weight of all those raindrops. Still everything is growing well and we've had lots of strawberries, (when I can get there before the bird that lives in the nearby tree!) and raspberries which are so yummy. Luckily, some serious sunshine is forecast for next week and that's just what I need to ripen my tomatoes and get my peppers and cucumbers really growing.

I hope you're all having a wonderful Father's day. In a moment I'll be making our special Father's day brunch. Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day, it is often so rushed and I love having the time to make yummy things like pancakes or a full English and feeling "set up" for the rest of the day! 

Keep safe and well everyone. I hope you all have a good week.

Best wishes

Mrs MacLennan

Sunday 14th June

Good morning Kestrels, I hope that you are all well and busy at home. I'm afraid a few weeks ago I did wish for rain!! And my wish was answered. I know a lot of people moan about the rain but I secretly love a good rainy day. I take my dogs for a walk and there's nobody else around and everything smells and looks so lush and fresh. And then when I get home I like to get all cosy in my comfies and put my fire on, (although it's a bit warm for that at the moment.) However, the weather has perked up and yesterday morning we all woke up to summer again! This week the warm, sunny weather is supposed to stick around so get out and enjoy it before winter returns! 

I'm off outside now to test a new walk with my family.

Enjoy your week, keep safe and look after each other.

Mrs MacLennan


Sunday 7th June

Hello Kestrels, I hope you've all had a good week. I'm sure many of you know that some children returned to school this week, although it's very different from our usual school. I hope it won't be too much longer before year 4 children can think about returning but at the moment we just don't know, so sit tight a little longer and we'll keep looking forward!

I know some individuals who have been quite happy during lockdown... my dogs! With lots of lovely, extra long walks and having us at home a lot more they are extremely happy dogs. Both my dogs were rescue puppies from Woodegreen. Ruby has just turned 8 and she's generally very mellow. She is a mixed breed dog, we think a cross between collie, terrier and rhodesian ridgeback, a really lovely mixture. Jetta (the black dog) is a cross between a black labrador and a German shepherd. She's 4 and can be a bit nervous, you can tell in the photo below she's thinking "What's going on? What is that?" It took me a while to get her to keep still long enough to take a snap!

pets 2



pets 1 










Jetta has particularly enjoyed making friends with Custard and Oreo, she likes to sit by their cage and custard often comes up and says "hello" to her. They've been staying nice and cosy inside over the past couple of days as the weather has turned rather wintery again! But I took a photo of Custard enjoying a nice bit of cucumber this morning. Unfortunately, Oreo is a bit camera shy and disappeared with his bit of cucumber before I could take his photo!

pets 3

Have a great week, keep safe.

Kind regards Mrs MacLennan

Sunday 31st May

Good Morning Kestrels, I hope you've had a lovely half term. I've had a very busy week in and around my home. We decorated our dining room and painted it a sunny yellow colour, (my favourite colour,) it was a cold, dark room and now its bright and feels bigger and warmer, a good job all round!

Again my garden has been benefitting from all the extra time we've had to spend in it! You may remember how upset I was by the frost in early May which damaged many of my plants. However, I am so pleased that with all the warm weather we've had since, the plants have made a fantastic recovery. The potatoes I'm growing in the dustbin are now much higher than the bin top and I've earthed them all up. Potatoes are ready to dig up when they flower and I was very excited to see a flower on one of my potato plants this week!

garden pots bin

garden pots










As well as the potatoes the tomatoes and strawberries have really come on. I hope I'll be able to harvest some in the next couple of weeks.

garden toms

garden straws 






Our pond is also coming along nicely, the flowers are all growing really well and its attracting lots of insects and birds. I haven't seen any amphibians yet but I'm sure they'll come. It does however need a little rain to fill it up a bit more! My water butts are getting very low as well so I'm afraid whilst loving all this beautiful sunshine I'm hoping for a rainshower or two! Preferably at night!

garden pond

Hanging on the rod is a water lily which we are gradually lowering into the pond as it can keep growing up towards the sunlight!

I hope you're all well and enjoying your gardens too!

Best wishes 

Mrs MacLennan

Friday 29th May

Hello Kestrels

I hope you are all having a lovely week enjoying the sunshine and being outdoors. I have really enjoyed seeing and chatting to some of you on my daily walks around the village with my family and Simba. I have loved watching the wildlife over the past weeks walking by the river. I have seen a fox, deer, a kingfisher, heron and kites, have you spotted anything on your walks? Mr Read and I had lots of fun trying to record the badgers on the school field , they have been very active whilst it has been quiet. Have you seen the swans nest by the Mill? I have been watching it daily, she has 5 eggs but they have still not hatched yet, hopefully soon.


Have you managed to do any of the PE daily challenges, I have still been running regularly but have also been improving my goalie skills, Jamie has kept me busy with this in the garden!

Take care all of you, look after your family.

Best Wishes Mrs Read


Sunday 24th May

Good morning Kestrels, I hope you've had a good week. The weather has been so much warmer which has been nice, all my plants have started growing again which makes me a very happy Mrs MacLennan! I'm sure you all know that next week is half term I hope this will give you the opportunity to have a little break from your home learning routine. I plan to decorate my dining room!

Keep well and safe, look after each other and be kind.

Best regards 

Mrs MacLennan

Saturday 16th May

Hello Kestrels,

What a chilly week it has been. On Wednesdy morning I woke up to find pesky Jack Frost had visited my garden and was devestated to see my beautiful potatoe plants had been damaged as well as the sweetcorn and squashes. When you've nurtured a plant from seed it's awful to see them wiped out by a frost or eaten by a slug -overnight! But that's the perils of gardening. I have now taken to tucking my plants in at night to try and avoid further damage!

Anyway the weather for next week looks a lot more promising, it might even be paddling pool temperatures by Wednesday. We went on another long and lovely bike ride with my family. Unfortunately, Freya fell off and cut her knee but after a snack break and a little rest she was good to go again. We've also been walking in the woods and the bluebells are just about over now but they've been replaced by a beautiful yellow flower called Archangel. It is a member of the Dead nettle family but it doesn't sting! It has a very interesting flower because the stamen and carpel are hidden in a hooded petal at the top of the flower, which when a bee lands on the flower bends over so that pollen can be exchanged! A very clever design. 

dead nettle

I hope you are all well and keeping safe. Enjoy the warmer weather this coming week.

Best wishes

Mrs MacLennan


Sunday 10th May

How crazy is this British weather? Yesterday we spent the whole day in the garden enjoying full sunshine and blazing temperatures. We even had a dip in our paddling pool and I couldn't get to sleep last night because I was too hot!

garden pool

And this morning we've woken up to what looks like a miseable day in January with chilly winds and a constant cold drizzle. So much so that today we've  built a cosy den to keep the howling wind at bay! What a difference 24 little hours can make to the British weather!

garden den

Although, I am not keen on this cold rain, the rain at least is good for the plants! Which along with the warm sunshine we've had recently have been growing apace. Do you remember on the 19th April I posted a photo of some potatoes I'd planted in an old dustbin? They had just started growing, well look at them now...

garden bin pots

already peeping out of the top! I've "earthed them up" by adding more and more soil to the bin as they've got taller and taller. I am really looking forward to some freshly dug salad potatoes; I think maybe next month- fingers crossed. I've actually got 4 varities of potatoes growing including; Desiree, Maris piper and Arran pilot, (for my son who is called Arran.) These are all what is called "main crop potatoes" and are good for roasting, mashing and chipping-yum.

garden potatoes

This photo shows some of my potatoes, spring greens, spring onions and carrots just coming through at the front. My strawberries and raspberries are looking really good this year after I gave them a good mulch with some stinky maure in March! I've also planted out my sweetcorn, pumkin and butternut squashes, (they were getting a bit big for the greenhouse) I'm just hoping this cold turn doesn't damage them. Finally, if you would like to grow something easy and good value for money at home I recommened salad leaves. They grow well on a windowsill all year round, take only 4 weeks from germination to eating! And are so much better than anything you can possibly find in a shop.

garden strawberry patchgarden salad

Whatever you're up to this wet and windy Sunday, I hope you have fun and enjoy yourself!

Keep safe and well.

Best wishes 

Mrs MacLennan

May 5th 2020

Hello Kestrels,

I hope you’ve had another good week at home. I see many of you have been busy on Mathletics, well done if you got a certificate this week and on Purple mash too, I enjoy seeing all of your work.

The weather has been a bit wetter this week, which I don’t really mind because my garden and especially my new pond really needed some rain! But it has meant we haven’t been on as many bike rides. Instead we played some board games Freya particularly likes charades and scrabble, whilst Arran likes strategic games like chess, Risk and Catan.

We’ve also been watching a bit more TV- as a family we quite like watching Richard Osman’s House of games. It’s fun because we can all have a go at most of the questions, our favourite round is “Where’s Kazakhstan?” We’ve adapted it so we can play too, we pass a globe to each other and shout out random places the other person has to find, e.g. where’s the Philippines or where would I find the Eiffel tower.

Due to the rain this week, (causing the plants to grow a lot) I spent 6 hours in the garden yesterday. We started a new compost bin, planted our sweetcorn and pumkin out, weeded and earthed up the potatoes which are growing super fast at the moment. I cannot wait until I can start harvesting some fruit and veg it makes me hungry just thinking about it!

Whatever you’re up to I hope that you’re enjoying yourself. Be kind and keep safe and well.

Best wishes

Mrs MacLennan

25th April

Good Morning Kestrels,

It has been a delight to speak to many of you again this week. I have loved hearing all your news from home. You’re all so busy, enjoying some great family time. Although many of you are keen to get back to school- even if it is just to see your friends!

One thing that a few of you mentioned was the star train or star link. Which actually isn’t stars at all but satellites. They are being launched 20 at a time with unmanned rockets and there have been 7 launches since the beginning of the year. We watched the live launch on Wednesday of Star link 7 at 8:30pm our time from Florida. Their orbit took them straight over Cambridgeshire so about 30 minutes later we went and laid on the trampoline and looked up to the sky. Amazingly, we saw it zoom across very fast and very bright. We are hoping to see it again as the satellites start to separate into the star train. Even if you don’t see the star train it was really lovely to sit and look up at the stars I thoroughly recommend you try it!

This week, we managed to finish our pond. It’s the first one we’ve ever made and whilst it’s not perfect I’m really proud of what we’ve achieved and I hope the wildlife will love it!


As you can see we’ve created a mini pebble beach at one end which gradually slopes down underneath the water. At the other end we have created steps under the water and a boggy area at the edge of the pond. This is where we hope all the plants will grow and flourish to provide a great habitat for all kinds of invertebrates and amphibians. In particular, I’m looking forward to the flag iris which is supposed to grow to over 1 meter tall and is good for dragonfly nymphs to crawl up. Now we just need to wait for all the plants to grow!

Just like most of you I’ve been going on walks and bike rides in my local area with my family and our dogs; Ruby and Jetta. We’ve been bowled over by the beauty of the bluebells in our local wood and this photo shows my dog, Jetta really enjoying her walk amongst them.


I hope to speak to the rest of you next week and find out what else you’re all getting up to!

Look after yourselves and keep safe.

Mrs MacLennan

Tuesday 21st April

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter and had a chance to eat lots of chocolate? I know I did! I’ve spent time catching up on jobs in the house and the garden but have had fun going out on some walks with my dog Maddie and my husband Neil and my daughter Laura. I’ve also had a virtual cup of tea with Mrs White from Owls class which was lovely to catch up and have a natter.  I hope you are all ok and have had some fun in the warm weather.

Best wishes Mrs Anderson

Hello Kestrels!

I hope you are all doing well. It is very strange not working with you at the moment. I miss seeing your happy faces, but I hope you are enjoying the lovely weather & spending time with your families.
Some riddles for you to think about:
1) What has 2 hands & a face that it can't scratch?
2) What makes 2 out of 1?
3) What is black when it's clean & white when it's dirty?
4) What has 6 faces & 21 'eyes'?
5) What is full of holes, but still holds water?
6) What becomes wetter the more it dries?
Have fun! Check the answers below.
1) a clock  2) a mirror. 3) a chalkboard  
4) a dice  5) a sponge
6) a towel
Love from Mrs Macey 

Sunday 19th April

Good Morning Kestrels!

I hope you have all had a fab Easter! Like many of you Freya, Arran and I had some time off over Easter to chill and relax a bit. However from tomorrow morning it’ll be back to our home schooling regime. Holiday time is nice but we need a bit more routine and purpose to keep our minds active.

It was really lovely to speak with lots of you over the past couple of weeks. I was so impressed with all the different things you were getting up to from making your own pizzas, (which reminded me of our work last term on Italy,) to making a papier-mâché Earth and a little bit of pond dipping. A lot of you have been having a go at the projects on our website and lots of sport even turning your house into a crazy golf course! All of you have been enjoying special family time and lots of long walks enjoying this beautiful weather. It was lovely to hear many of you were able to get together for a special ZOOM birthday party, one to remember!

I’m going to be using ZOOM later, to catch up with my book group and earlier I played bingo with several members of my family via video link!

Guinea pig update! It’s been a bit wet and cold this weekend so the guinea pigs have been staying nice and warm inside. I’ve managed to get a photo of Oreo for you, he’s a bit camera shy!


guinea pig oreo

I’ve been a bit busy so I haven’t completed my pond yet however the plants and pebbles have arrived so I’ll be finishing it this week. I have planted lots of vegetables including some potatoes in an old black bin and some recycled tyres- they’ve just started growing.



I also have 4 varieties of tomato on the go including; one called green zebra and one called chocolate stripe? I’ve never tried them before but I’m keen to see if they taste different to a normal tomato!

I hope to speak to you all again over the next fortnight. Keep well and safe.

Best wishes

Mrs MacLennan

Monday 13th April 

Good mornign Kestrels,

I hope you all had a fantastic Easter weekend, got out in your garden and maybe, (if you're lucky) enjoyed some Easter treats. I set up an Easter egg hunt for my children and husband aorund our house and garden. I like to use photos of different places they need to workout where the place is and go there to find the next photo, the last photo leading to the eggs! For Arran I made the photos quite difficult, close up and a bit abstract, as he is getting older but he was still very good at it. I'll have to try harder next year to make it more of a challenge! 

I've also been in the garden planting lots of potatoes and carrots, (I'm not very good at growing carrots but they're Freya's favourit veg!) As well as sweetcorn, tomatoes, spring onions, salad leaves, butternut sqaush, cucumber and pumkins and some herbs. I also mulched the strawberry and raspberry beds- I'm hoping for a bumper crop this year.

I hope you've been making good use of your time at home too! Keep well and keep safe, enjoy the second week of your Easter holidays.

All the best

Mrs MacLennan

Sunday 5th April

Hello Everyone,

What an absolutely glorious weekend, the weather has been so good. I hope you’ve all been able to enjoy it! I hope also that you’ve kept busy and been keeping all your super skills sharp.

I have just finished reading a biography about an author you are all familiar with, Michael Morpurgo. I am sure you remember reading his fantastic book “Rainbow bear” at the beginning of the spring term. His biography is called, “War boy to War horse” and is written by a lady called Maggie Ferguson. It made a really interesting read and I give it 5 stars! A lot of biographies are written after a person has died, but Michael is still alive (aged 76) and writing books! In fact he wrote 7 original short stories to be included in his biography for 7 different stages in his life. I don’t think you’re quite ready for his biography yet but maybe you’d like to try one of the other books he has written for children? If you do fancy finding out a bit more about Michael and his books you could have a look at his website: https://www.michaelmorpurgo.com/

I hope you also enjoyed some of the spring flower themed activities suggested on the main page. My family and I spotted and named the spring flowers and blossoms we saw on our walk in the woods. We spotted celandine, blackthorn, daffodils, grape hyacinth and some small purple ones we couldn’t find the name of! It was my parents 42nd wedding anniversary this week and because I couldn’t get to the shops I decided to make them a bouquet of spring flowers from my garden, what do you think?

spring flowers


Despite the chilly weather this week we continued with our garden wildlife project. We dug out the pond (this was mostly done by Mr MacLennan –really hard work!) Lined it and filled it with rainwater (mostly) from our water butts. pond

It has a little more to go but when you want rain.... I’ve been carefully watching “garden pond” videos on You-tube and hopefully have created enough terraced areas to have water of differing depths for different plants and animals – and so it won’t freeze in the winter. Freya selected a range of native plants including: floaters / oxygenators, marginals and lily pads to hopefully keep our pond healthy and full of life. They haven’t arrived yet but when they do we can finish off the pond and watch it flourish!

We did also have a go at the “Masterchef Challenge,” as we now call it; to make a chocolate fondant that’s gooey in the centre. I can tell you, we were not successful L and wouldn’t have got through to the next round of Masterchef. Our fondants were definitely more of a chocolate sponge; yummy all the same, especially with vanilla ice cream. Although we haven’t given up, hopefully our next try will be more successful J

Some of you may have been wondering about the guinea pigs, I just wanted to let you know that I brought them home with me so that I can look after them during the school closure. They too have been enjoying the garden and I wanted to share with you this lovely photo of Custard eating the dandelion flowers in my grass! I’m afraid Oreo is a bit camera shy and hiding in his little home.

guinea pigs

The week coming looks to bring lots of lovely sunshine and of course it is Easter next weekend! I hope you all have a good week, keep safe and well.

All the best Mrs MacLennan

30th March 2020

Hello Kestrels,

I hope you have all had a good week at home and found lots of fun and interesting things to do as well as some rest and play time!

Well done to all of you who got over 1000 points on Mathletics last week, 2 of you even managed over 4000 points –fantastic! Congratulations to those who got a bronze, silver and even 1 gold certificate. You are doing a brilliant job of keeping your maths skills tip-top despite not being at school, that’s not easy to do so you should be super proud of you, I am.

It was very different for me last week as well, instead of a classroom full of Kestrels I had my own daughter at home to educate! Freya’s teacher had asked her to put a project together on dinosaurs! With the fabulous weather we had we decided to do some outdoor learning in the garden and had great fun creating a Jurassic world habitat. We learnt that the climate changed from; hot / dry desert to hot / humid- tropical jungle. So we used some sand, rocks, leaves and grass to create the different biomes. It was also the time when the large super continent Pangea started breaking up into the smaller continents, we know today. As a result there was the formation of in land oceans and lots of volcanic activity. We also made a paper-mache volcano around an old milk bottle and exploded it using some bicarb of soda and vinegar. So that was my (and I mean mine, not Freya’s!) week of home learning!

Below is a photo of the Jurassic biome we made. Freya is pouring some vinegar and washing up liquid into the volcano (we'd already put in some bicarb) to make it explode!

jurassic biome finished

Spending so much time in the garden inspired us for our next project- to make a wildlife pond. Freya is going to be in charge of choosing suitable native plants and managing the budget!



The toad we found in our garden which inspired our idea to create a wildlife pond. I’ll share with you what happens next week!

I have to say the weather looks a bit chilly this week so there may well be a few more indoor activities too, Freya wants to take on the Masterchef Challenge and make a chocolate fondant, (if you watch Masterchef you’ll know what I mean!) Hopefully, it will be a yummy success.

I hope you all have a great week at home.

Keep well and safe

All the best Mrs MacLennan

23rd March 2020

Dear Kestrels,

I am so sorry I wasn't able to be with you last week, I didn't want to risk making any of you unwell. I am pleased to tell you that Freya is all better and doing well. I have loved looking at the photos from the week you've had in school. I can see that Mrs Macey, Mrs Anderson, Mrs Sweet and Mrs Read have really looked after you all so well. Your art work is beautiful and I your story books look amazing. What a lot of fantastic sport too - a super busy week!

Whilst most of you will be staying at home for the next few weeks, I don't want you to let all the hard work and important learning you've being doing this year slip away. You need to keep practising, I've written some ideas on the home learning page to keep you all busy! 

Look after yourselves and keep safe. I look forward to seeing you all again when school gets back to normal.

Friday 20th March

Kestrels have been amazing this week coping with lots of changes.

Last day


They have worked hard, they have written some great stories based on ideas from The Storey Treehouse books which we shared this afternoon.

 Sharing books 1Sharing books 2Sharing books 3Sharing books 4

They have enjoyed their daily mile alongside extra PE, which has included cricket, goal ball and archery today. 

Daily mileArchery 1Archery 2Archery 3


This morning the children chose a polar animal and enjoyed choosing a medium to produce a picture of their animal. art 1

art 2art 3art 4art 5art 6art 7

 We have also enjoyed our lunch together in the classroom this week.lunch 1lunch 2

Take care of yourselves. Best Wishes from Year 4 Team.



Friday 6th February

The children really enjoyed their second table tennis lesson, this week. We will be having table tennis lessons every Tuesday for the rest of this term. 

table tennis 2table tennis 1table tennis 3

Friday 28th February

This week we began learning about our History focus for the Polar lands topic. We learned about the race to the south pole and had a look at some real life historic artefacts borrowed from the Polar insitiute in Cambridge. We read some of Scott's diary entries from that fateful expedition over 100 years ago. Inspired by the artefacts we looked at and the importance of keeping our fingers warm and designed and tested some insulated mittens.

Today we also had a visit from an Arctic explorer who talked to us about his adventures and showed us what you need to take on an expedition to survive. 

Explorer 1 400Explorer 2 400Explorer 3


Friday 31st January

This week, we held a class debate to discuss the choice of Rainbow bear. The class was split almost 50:50 for and against becoming Rainbow bear and had some thoughtful ideas and interesting arguments to make.

We then investigated how some animals, who have adapted to survive in polar habitats, use a thick layer of blubber to keep themselves warm. The children took part in the, "blubber glove experiment" observing the difference a layer of blubber made to how cold their hand became!

blubber glove 1blubber glove 2blubber glove 3

We also held a birthday party for Franzi, we gave her the cards we had made and written in German as well as singing happy birthday in Germand playing a traditional German birthday game.

Germand bd2gernma BD1germand bd4German bd3

Friday 16th January

We held our first celebration assembly this week. We know the children get up to lots of exciting things outside of school and wanted to give them some dedicated time to share their experiences and achievements with us in school. With this in mind we started the celebration assemblies which will take place during our Thursday assemblies. This week, some of our class shared their medals from swimming galas that took place before Christmas- congratulations to you all fantastic work!

celebration assembly 2celebration assembly

Friday 10th January

Happy New Year to you all and welcome back! We've had a lovely start to the year with our "Brain Day" We had a visit from a STEM scientist who taught us about the biological structure and function of our brains and how amazing they are! We then followed this with a session on developing a "growth mindset" for 2020, followed by an afternoon of looking after our brains with a spot of mindfulness. 

brain 2brain 5brain 6brain 7

We are lucky enough to have sports coach Claire Davids working with us again. This term,she will be helping us develop our understanding of team tactics. This week the children were developing their understanding of possession, it was a lot of fun and the class displayed some excellent team skills.

games 1games 2games 3games 4

Friday 20th December

We've made it to the end of term! A third of the year has flown by, I think it has been a terrific term and I hope that you feel so too! We finished the term by learning about electricity and found the perfect way to apply our new found knowledge in the "light up" Christmas cards we made. The children were extremely proud of their creations and quite rightly so! I'd like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you for all my lovely presents, they're very much appreciated and I feel thouroughly spoilt- thank you. And lastly, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all. 

Friday 6th December

On Monday we turned Kestrel's classroom into a pizzeria! The children all made delicious and healthy pizzas. After looking at the nutiritonal information on the packages of premade pizzas we set about developing a healthier recipe. We substituted 50% of the white flour for wholegrain flour. We also made our own tomato sauce with a range of lovely fresh vegetables with no added salt or sugar- they weren't sure at first however  all the feedback I received suggests they were the best pizzas EVER!

pizza 1pizza 2pizza 3pizza 4pizza 5pizza 6pizza 7pizza 8pizza 9pizza 10

Friday 29th November

This week, we have been learning about the physical geography of Italy. The children made 3D salt dough models which we will paint and label next week to identify some of the physical and human geographical features of Italy.

italy map 2italy map 3

italy map 1

Another fantastic week in the gym with Claire Davids. This week the children displayed some extraordinary team work to produce outstanding gymnastic displays. 

claire davids 2claire davids 3claire davids 5claire davids 6claire davids 7

Claire Davids 1

Friday 22nd November

This week in PE the children were absolutely amazing! We encouraged the children to use the apparatus in ways they may not have thought of before... And they blew us away with their creativity, power and team work, just take a look at some of the photos. 

apparatus 1apparatus 2apparatus 3apparatus 4apparatus 5

Friday 15th November

As part of kindness week we read the story of the red crayon and thought about who people are on the inside. We also made smiley faced biscuits to say thank you to the special people in our lives. 

kindness 1kindness 2kindness 3

Continuing with our Roman topic this week, we learnt about the Celtic revolt of 61AD when Boudicca of the Iceni tribe, (based in cambridgeshire) burned 3 Roman towns to the ground before leading her warriors on to face the Roman army at Watling street where they were defeated. The children recreated scenes from Boudicca's last few weeks, using a freeze frame drama technique.

boudicca 1boudicca 2boudicca 3boudicca 4

In PE they enjoyed getting the apparatus out during our gym session with Mrs Davids.

gym 1gym 2gym 3gym 4

Friday 8th November

Inspired by our work on the Romans, this week we have been designing our own catapults. The children used lolly-pop sticks, plastic spoons, bottle tops and elastic bands to make our catapults. We then tested them by measuring how far they could catapult a cotton wool ball, we used a target board to measure their accuracy and finally a plastic cup pyramid to test how powerful the catapults were. Whilst testing the catapults the children compared and evaluated their designs. making adjustments to help improve performance.

catapults 1catapults 2catapults 3catapults 4catapults 6catapults 7catapults 8catapults 9catapult 5

Friday 1st November

This term in PE we have been challenging ourselves, by developing our team work and leadership skills. One of our activities involved us being guided around an obstacle course blindfolded.



We have also enjoyed participating in Sports Mornings organised by Year 6.

SM 1

SM 3

SM 2

And today we got a little bit muddy practising our rugby skills, ready for watching England play in the World Cup Final tomorrow.


Rugby 3

Rugby 4


Friday 18th October

We've made it! I hope you have all enjoyed your first half term as a Kestrel. The children have all worked so hard but I hope they've had a lot of fun too. This week, we continued our topic work on the Romans; learning about roman art through making a large classroom mosaic, creating roman numerals using lolly-pop sticks and beginning to undertsand the chronolgy of the Roman Empire by sequencing a timeline of major events. After half term, we will be continuing our topic on the Romans, learning about how they conquored Britain and changed life here, forever. I hope you all have a great half term!

Roman numerals 1Roman numerals 2Roman numerals 3Roman numerals 4Roman numerlas 3

9th October

What a fab day Roman Day 2019 has been. The children have been super busy all day; making mosaic tiles, squeesing their own oil from olives, using traditional Roman cures to heal patients, making and writing on their own wax tablets, to name just a few. This was a super start to our Roman topic, now we're all fired up and ready to learn lots more!

 roman day 2019 012roman day 2019 014roman day 2019 164roman day 2019 166roman day 2019 181roman day 2019 194roman day 2019 200

20th September

We have been exploring place value in numbers up to 9999, this week. The children worked super hard to partition the numbers in different ways, using place value counters to help them visualise what was happening and consolidate their understanding. 

place value 1place value 2place value 3

Following on from our exploration work in Science last week, the children developed their own questions to investigate; "What affects the quality of sound from a string telephone? They investigated: the types of string, the length of string, the size of container and if adding knots to the string made any difference to the performance of the string telephone. We used our data loggers to measure the sound in decibels. Next week, we will collate their findings to design the best string telephone and test them out!

string telephone 1

10th September

sound 1sound 2sound 3sound 4sound 5

We have begun our Science topic on sound this week. The children have had a fantastic time exploring how sound is made by vibrations, in particular they have enjoyed using string telephones. Whilst "investigating" with the phones one of the pupils asked the question, "Would they work with a longer string?" someone else asked, "How long could we make a string telephone?" and I asked the question, "Could we make a string telephone that would work from one end of our school field to the other?" The children decided that they would like to find out the answers to these questions, so next week are going to hold a child-led investigation to do just that. Using our data loggers to measure the efficency of each string telephone, hence our request for tin cans!

7th September

I would like to wish you all a huge welcome to Kestrels class. I hope you've all had a fantastic summer and a good rest, the children were certainly ready and raring to go! We had a lovely day getting to know each other, sharing our summer memories as well as our ambitions for year 4. In the afternoon we played some very exciting parachute games. I do hope everyone enjoyed their first day as a Kestrel and look forward to sharing your child's learning journey this year.

Getting out and enjoying the sunshine completing our daily mile, today.

daily miledaily mile 2



Houghton Primary School Copyright © 2016. All Rights Reserved.