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Primary School

Sycamore (Y5)

Weekly bulletin (w/c 23rd May 2022)


And there we were - the end of another term! This one is always a little strange as it tends to be quite short and usually the weather is improving!


This week we have worked on angles on a straight line and around a point - using known facts to calculate missing angles upto 180 and 360 degrees (can't add the degrees symbol!). The children then worked amazingly on some complex problems linked to this knowledge and it was fantastic to see the cogs whirring - working out which fact needed to be worked out in order to open the next fact - great resilience shown by all!

In English, we have continued the text 'The Explorer' and this week the class have consolidated their direct speech knowledge and dug deeper into the natural use of reported speech in a narrative. Great to see them using in the same section of text to be able to compare and balance. It was also great to welcome parents to the 'writing challenge' session on Tuesday - lovely to see your work and for your positive comments on some of the 'ways we do it' in the lessons - your children loved sharing their work with you too.


As always, my thanks for your continued support over the term - one more to go and they're Y6's!


New documents are here too - timetable, 100 point project and term overview.


Have a great half term, enjoy the Jubilee celebrations and I will see you in a week!


Well done Sycamore - awesome!


Mr Y

Weekly bulletin (w/c 16/5/22)


This week we have been part of the National Numeracy Day Rolling Numbers challenge in conjunction with Times Tables Rock Stars - the children performed a dance and a times tables based rap! In other maths lessons, we have continued our work on angles, moving on to the accurate drawing of acute and obtuse angles and then implementing the calculation skills to draw reflex angles.


In English we have continued with the text 'The Explorer' - from this we have seen how the use of personification allows the author to bring elements of the text to life such as describing a campfire as inhaling and exhaling and belching into life!


In science we conducted a micro-organism based investigation - this saw us mixing yeast and sugar with either warm or cold water and measuring the change over a period of time.


Well done to Dylan for being our Gold award winner this week - well done!

Weekly bulletin (w/c May 9th 2022)


In maths this week we have done some recap work on types of angles - acute, right, obtuse, straight and reflex. We then moved on to developing the skill of using a protractor to accurately measure a given angle - this is quite tricky to begin with but we have got it sorted! 


In English we have written persuasive and emotive letters from the 'Eternal Child' in the text How to Live Forever - a solid set of letters that use some very good language and emotive vocabulary to try and warn off any potential readers of the book!


In Science we learnt about Carl Linnaeus and how his work changed how we classify and organise living creatures into different categories.


Well done to Lily for this weeks Gold award! Great perseverance!

Weekly bulletin (W/C 2/5/22)


Another busy week here in Sycamore - lots of learning! In maths we have been working on decimal sequences and also then on multiplying an dividing decimal values using our place value knowledge and understanding.


In English we have continued our work on How To Live Forever - we have planned and begun writing a narrative about the 'Eternal child' who Peter meets in the text. The children have been setting themselves targets for their writing.


In science we have been learning about how to classify plants - we used branching databases to classify using headings such as vascular / non-vascular! 


Well done to Rhys for winning this weeks Gold award!



Weekly bulletin (W/c/25/4/22)


Welcome back to term 5! I can hardly believe we are already this far through the year! So much done, and so much still ahead of us!


This week we began investigating the notion of being able to live forever - a general 'That'd be awesome!' reaction changed over the course of class discussions about friends, family etc ageing before us and having to move frequently to suppress suspicions about us - all from the book 'How to live forever' by Colin Thompson. We began with this discussion and then dug into using punctuation to help deepen description of a character and setting.


In maths we have worked really hard on decimal addition and subtraction - from numbers that complement to make 1, to numbers with same and different decimal places which, especially for subtraction, isn't as straightforward as first imagined!


In geography we began a set of sessions involving lots of research skills. We researched North American countries this week - finding out about which countries comprise N.America, imports/exports, climate, natural resources etc and the children worked really well to garner information that will be used in subsequent sessions.


Well done to Ruben for his gold award this week - for his concerted efforts and resilience in writing just before the Easter break - more to come!

Update from Moldova.


Reuben flew home on Thursday 7th April (the two other chaps drove home in one vehicle and we have left a vehicle their for local use) and has the intention of flying back out to meet the second convoy heading over in a few weeks.


It has been an emotional time with many success stories and those of a more solemn nature. The aid convoy was the largest to ever enter Moldova and has been most gratefully received! 

Over the weekend he went shopping to support a food kitchen run by locals. Usually the create and hand out 100 meals a day but this has increased to 300 meals a day so some of the funds donated have gone to supplying this kitchen for the next few weeks....


Once he has caught up on his sleep and seen his family I will try and collate some specifics - mileages, delivery quantities etc but he did want me to pass on his sincere thanks for all the support - it has really made the difference we had hoped for.


Thank you.

Weekly update (w/c 4.4.22)


Another one bites the dust! A massively impressive final week of the term with some astonishing pieces of work linked to Skellig. The children have been on such a rollercoaster in the final section of the book this week and as I have been reading the story to them it has been a joy to see the facial expressions change, the gasps of joy and surprise spilling out of them - the true power of a good story! This has flowed into the work they have written - pulling all the skills and ideas from the last few weeks to write a conclusion to the book from their feelings and ideas.


In maths we have continued our work in linking decimals, fractions and percentages and the children have been working on finding prices of items after some pretty complex percentage reductions!


Well done this week to Riley and Amelia for their gold awards for effort and perseverance - it really does pay off!


Have a great Easter break and I will catch you in a couple of weeks!

Weekly update (w/c 28/3/22)


This week has been a really great week and the children have been amazing once again! 


In English we continue digging into Skellig and have discovered more about the character Mina - a young girl that has struck up a friendship with Michael. We have discussed how their friendship and trust is growing through the story and we examined reasons why Skellig took an immediate liking to Mina whereas he was more reluctant to accept help from Michael.


In maths we have been learning about percentages and how to convert from decimals and fractions - it is always good to be able to see the children recognise why we do things in a certain order in school as the fraction work we have done is now linking to the percentages.


In DT they began to make their picture frames this week and should have them completed next week. Well done to all of them for an accident free set of lessons using saws and glue guns!


Well done this week to Lucy for her writing skills in balancing dialogue and narrative. A worthy gold award!



Had a good phone call with Reuben today with an update of life out in Moldova.

The thing that has struck him the most is the fact that the Moldovan people, who have pretty much nothing themselves, have welcomed people exiting Ukraine with open arms and open hearts. He said that they don't refer to them as 'refugees' but as 'guests' which is quite the thing to do in my view. There are no real 'refugee camps' as such as people are taking the arrivals into their homes so the Teech team are making sure that supplies get to the households and individuals going over and above to provide shelter, food, warmth and dignity.

In each town/village they have been to, literally everyone comes out to offer them a space in their homes or to feed them.... Despite their own hardships.

He said that they are delivering to professional people who left a realtively wealthy life back in Ukraine with literally a bag of belongings, which was quite a hard thing to compute.

One young lady, about 8 months pregnant had recently arrived having spent 3 weeks hiding in a cellar before family insisted she made the trip over the border. Her partner, and older brother were still in Ukraine fighting.

The locals have been welcoming to the whole team, offering to feed and accommodate them and the mayor of one village came out to greet them and welcome them to his village with pride!

The link is still live for donations to be made:

Update on Moldova trip.

Thank you so much to all who have made donations to the Moldova / Ukraine aid convoy that my best friend is on.


They met up with the lorries on Thursday morning (24th) and headed off to the ferry port and across into Europe. They plan to drive in shifts until they reach Romania and then have a rest before heading over the border into Moldova.


From here they will begin to distribute the lorry loads into smaller batches and Reuben will then be working with a team to arrange deliveries to smaller locations.


The donation page will remain open until they head for home - from an original target of £3500 we are just about to hit £7000!

Weekly bulletin (w/c 21/3/22)


This week has finally seen the weather begin turn a little cheerier - hopefully not just a quick tease!


In maths this week we have been learning about the links between decimal and fractional values upto thousandths and have been able to exchange between the two representations.


In English, we have delved further into the David Almond story, 'Skellig' and have discovered a little more about the creature in the garage - the children are really becoming adept at putting clues together and forming predictions about what might come next. We have been working on our speech punctuation and balancing narrative with dialogue which happens so well in the text.


In Science we did a research lesson on Charles Darwin and discovered facts about his work on evolution and inheritance.


Well done to Ellen who won our Gold award this week for her positive view of the world in  applying her writing skills to a character monologue.

Weekly bulletin (w/c 14/3/22)


Another superb week in Sycamore this week. In maths we have been applying our fractions skills to be able to find unit and non-unit fractions of quantities and amounts - using a formula to help with the calculation.


In English, we have continued our work on Skellig, with the children putting themselves in the mindset of Skellig and creating internal monologues and giving the reader a 'voice' for the character through word choices, repetition of phrases and deliberate mix ups of word orders etc.


In Science we investigated plant adaptations and recognised how cold weather and hot weather plants have various small adaptations to help them survive in an appropriate climate.


In art, the children had a fun (if rather noisy) session extracting the natural dyes from leaves and flowers!


Well done to Omera and Dylan for their Gold awards from this week and last! Excellent perseverance and application of skills.

Weekly bulletin (w/c 7/3/22)


This week we began with a trip to Carterton Community College to watch a performance of Robin Hood - the children really seemed to enjoy it and we also discovered some future theatre critics in the midst too!


In English we have begun our work on Skellig by David Almond. We have discussed the suspenseful way in which we have been drawn in to the book and discussed how it compared to the opening chapters of the Nowhere Emporium.


In maths we have been working on multiplication of fractions - either by another fraction or whole numbers culminating in multiplying mixed numbers on Friday - the children were very relieved at how much simpler this is compared to the addition and subtraction work! 


In science we discussed in adaptation of animals and plants - some great discussion was had and a deeper understanding of why camels have long eyelashes ensued!


Well done to all of Sycamore this week - I expect a huge amount from you each day and you really rise to the challenge! I will congratulate both Gold award winners next week as we weren't here for the assembly this week.

Welcome to Sycamore Class.


I am Mr Young, and I have been working at CPS for just over 7 years. I enjoy being part of the CPS team and being able to share the journey of making the school better alongside staff and children.


I don't have children of my own, but I do have a mischievous and adventurous bear, named Harumphrey. We have travelled the world together and had all sorts of adventures! Sometimes he pops into school to help us with our learning although at times he can be more of a hindrance than a help!


In my spare time I love cycling (not very fast, but increasingly far!) and I am out and about as often as I can be - even in the snow - which is my favourite weather!


Learning in Sycamore is a two way relationship - I expect you to take part and share your ideas and thoughts with the rest of the class as this helps to broaden your own thoughts, opinions and develop long term knowledge. I'm also keen to develop you as a whole person - learning how to become resilient, flexible, empathetic and respectful - skills to take through our whole lives!


What to wear and bring to school:

All students should come to school in school uniform and with a school bag. Students should pack a water bottle, hat and any pencil case/stationery that they may want to use. Please make sure all personal items are labelled with your child’s name. On PE days, (Tuesday & Thursday) children should come into school in PE kits rather than school uniform. These days will be communicated to parents and any alterations (due weather for example) will be sent in a message to you.


Termly timetable and homework

Your child will receive a timetable at the start of each term. This will also be sent out and put on the class web page. Homework will be primarily set via Google classroom each term – where possible submission should also be on Google classroom (unless something more tactile like a model/cooking etc). As with previous years the homework will be based on the 100 point challenge. If at any point you would like extra support work for your child please contact me and I can provide appropriate support.


End of the day

The school day ends at 3.05pm (currently under staggered end times) – if you would like to grant permission for your child to walk home independently at the end of the day then please print a copy of the letter below and send into me.

This permission remains open - you may sign up at any point or withdraw permission should you need to. Just keep me updated.


Please note that permission for independent walking ends at the end of the academic year and new permission will be needed for the following year.



If you have any queries about the daily routine or what your child is learning then do not hesitate to get in touch. I will always endeavour to reply to you as soon as possible, occasionally this may take longer than I would like but I always aim to get back to you within 24 hours during the school week.



Mr Young

Please print and return for permission to be granted.

Classroom pictures


Reading holds the key to learning in almost every other subject and learning opportunity - it is difficult to access a History topic without developing reading skills as an example.


We expect each child to read beyond school hours.We suggest 5 separate occasions each week. We suggest each night from Monday to Thursday and then an additional session between Friday and Sunday - they may read more of course! This should be a mix of independent reading and reading aloud to someone. It should be recorded in their reading record each time they read outside of school. It is no coincidence those that read regularly see the biggest improvements in writing also.


Each child has a reading diary to record their reading experiences and these are being checked on a weekly basis.


Please also be aware of the value of reading the right text - whilst I understand that certain texts by certain authors are a nice 'Sunday afternoon' read, there is such a wealth of knowledge to be gained by varying the author, text type and genre of book we read - new vocabulary, punctuation use, grammar development and inference all come from a range of text rather than simply reading the 'cartoon' type books.