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St Stephen's C of E Junior School

'Learning to change the World' 'Act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God' - Micah 6:8
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Welcome to 5CG's class page! Here you can keep up to date with our learning journey and find out what we have been doing and what will be happening in the future. We look forward to sharing this with you. 


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Term 6

LoE: Why should we protect the Amazon Rainforest?

Our new enquiry will provide us with plenty of opportunities to refine our skills as geographers and scientists. We will develop our map-reading skills, research life in the Amazon Rainforest, investigate the rainforest as a vital natural resource and consider the human impact on this diverse, yet vulnerable, environment. Our challenge will be to create a campaign video persuading the public to protect the Amazon Rainforest


Our challenge was to write a persuasive piece of writing on why we should protect the Amazon Rainforest and then use this to create a campaign video persuading the public to protect this life-giving biome. We took our main inspiration from the Sky Rainforest Recue Campaign and looked at three of their campaign videos. We particularly liked the one done below by Lily Cole as we thought it used a lot of persuasive techniques. We hope you enjoy these examples of our campaign videos (filmed using a green screen!), and hopefully it will inspire you to make even a small change for the good of this magnificent landscape.

Sky Rainforest Rescue - Lily Cole

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Campaign video

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Campaign video

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Campaign video

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Art Week

Week 5 was Art Week. Inspired by the wonderful work of Henri Rousseau, we used a variety of colouring techniques and watercolour washes to create vivid rainforest scenes. Next, we modelled animals from clay and created colourful habitats for our creatures. On Wednesday, Elise taught us how to weave with wicker. We wove a magnificent tiger decorated with strips of fabric on which we wrote our hopes for the future of the world's tropical rainforests.

Rainforest Scenes

Wild Wicker!


To demonstrate this term's value of responsibility, our green fingers will be put to the test in a house sunflower-growing competition. Take a look at one of our cultivation plans!


5CG have been lucky enough to work with the professional coaches twice this year and we are currently enjoying our Athletics unit. We have been getting some great tips and perfecting our techniques which we look forward to putting into practise on Sports Day!

5CG Class Assembly - Ramadan

On Thursday 18th June, 5CG lead an assembly on Ramadan, an important Islamis festival. Muslim people, who follow Islam, have five duties that are called the Five Pillars of Islam. Every Muslim tries to carry out these five things, and it helps them to feel that they are members of the worldwide Muslim community. Fasting during the month of Ramadan is Pillar 4. Muslim people must not eat food or drink during daylight hours during the month of Ramadan. Fasting teaches self-control, encourages a focus on prayer and allows Muslims to devote their attention to worship, and get closer to Allah.


During the first three weeks of our enquiry, we studied a range of maps, located the Amazon Rainforest and investigated its topography, before travelling into the depths of its understory with Google Maps.


Next, we immersed ourselves in two tales from the Amazon, which helped us to appreciate the importance of this precious ecosystem.  The Great Kapok Tree introduced us to why the Amazon rainforest is so important and we represented the ideas from it by creating our own Kapok tree to go on our display.

The Shaman's Apprentice opened up our eyes as to the medicinal values of rainforest plants and gave us an insight into what a Shaman is and how for thousands of years they have passed on their knowledge and wisdom about these special plants from generation to generation. Here are some of our persuasive posters for the different plants.
While enjoying Rio 2 on the big screen, we used poster paint, watercolours, tissue paper, oil pastels and colouring pencils to recreate rainforest flora and fauna and produce a stunning door display.

Term 5

Class Newsletter

What is the best way for a Sikh to show commitment to God?


During this enquiry, we explored the different ways that Sikhs can show commitment to God, from wearing the five Ks, reading the Guru Granth Sahib and doing Sewa. As our challenge, we wrote letters to Arjan, a Sikh boy who wanted advice about how best to show commitment to God.

LoE: How does art enhance storytelling?

During this enquiry, How does art enhance storytelling?, we will be investigating and evaluating a range of storytelling methods, including plays, audio books, stories told through music, art and text. Our final challenge will see us put together a class e-book starting with a music composition to introduce our innovated stories which will be told through the mediums of art, prose and spoken work.

Our sensational showcase!

We are proud to present our wonderful work inspired by The Princess' Blankets, by Carol Ann Duffy. We hope that you enjoy looking at it as much as we enjoyed creating it!

Our stories! 


We are thrilled to share with you some extracts from our innovated fairytales that were inspired by The Princess' Blankets. 

Creating texture and movement


In week 5, 5CG explored how to create texture and movement using oil paints. Using dabbing, we were able to create a raised effect, counterbalanced by some smooth strokes, generating texture. Carefully placed smudges added the impression of movement. 


After a successful practice session, 5CG set out to create their masterpiece, to be featured in our e-book, to enhance their innovated fairytale story. Here are our final masterpieces. Can you guess what blanket they might be representing? 


After evaluating a variety of soundtracks, we went outside and worked in groups to compose a class soundtrack to accompany the Secret Garden's blanket. We used our knowledge of pitch, tempo, volume and tone to create a positive mood which would enhance our written descriptions. Where better to perform and record our soundtrack than in the secret garden itself! 

The Secret Garden's Blanket


Inspired by Carol Ann Duffy's rich use of language, we are going to apply our knowledge of figurative language to innovate a description of the Secret Garden's blanket. We took advantage of our wonderful outdoor space and went outside to gather things for our blanket in a bowl. We then tipped our findings onto our tables and designed our own blankets. We were surprised by how different they all looked! We are looking forward to using them to inspire our writing...

The Blankets

Determined to earn his reward, the stranger wrapped the Princess in four blankets stolen from nature. Before viewing Catherine Hyde's artistic interpretations, we used the vivid descriptions to create a class version of each blanket.

A stranger arrives...

After countless attempts to cure the Princess, a mysterious stranger arrived at the palace claiming that he knew magic and could stop the Princess suffering from the cold. If successful, as a reward, he planned to carry her back to his own land to be his wife. We took on the role of royal servants and used the stranger's arrival as an excuse to have a good gossip, as well as an opportunity to develop our dialogue-writing skills.


It begins!

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We worked in groups and used some talk for writing techniques to learn the opening of The Princess' Blankets. Enjoy...

WOW - Storytelling!


To kick start our enquiry this term, How does art enhance storytelling?, we were exposed to a variety of storytelling methods, starting with audiobooks. We listened to some Roald Dahl read by Stephen Fry, David Walliams and Kate Winslet before listening to David Almond read an extract from Skellig. Having established some steps to success for audiobooks, we then practised reading an extract from Skellig and recorded ourselves on the IPads. It was trickier than we thought to read with expression and intonation!


In the afternoon, we were lucky enough to have Martin come and lead a workshop on storytelling. With nothing but a ukulele and his imagination, he showed us how to to bring a story to life. Inspired by our outside space, we got into groups and created a quest story. 

Anti-bullying day!

After watching Wing, an animation about a boy who gets targeted by a group of crows, we did some freeze frames and considered how the boy felt at each key point in the story. To remind us how lonely a person can feel when being bullied, we got creative and designed our own wings. Like wings, we realised that we work best when we work together.


This influenced our discussions in the afternoon where we created an agreed definition of bullying, discussed the types of and effects of bullying and the reasons why people bully. In addition, we created some Haiku poems about bullying. Here are two examples: one by Stacey and one by Shannon and Natalie. 


Building confidence

Be the best with everyone

Show the golden rules


Ask them to stop it

Make sure you have self control

Do not hurt people


Term 4

Class Newsletter

Challenge - 5CG's Science Show!


After weeks of tireless preparation, we were finally ready for our challenge - to put on a Science Show for 3CJ to demonstrate our understanding of our enquiry question, 'Can change always be reversed?' We delivered a carousel of six interactive activities, including thrilling our audience with an explosive film canister rocket launch! We loved entertaining 3CJ and sharing our superb scientific knowledge. Now, we're looking forward to finding out what they thought of our show...

E-safety Week
To ensure that we know how to stay safe online and have fun at the same time, we took part in a number of important e-safety activities. We reset our school network passwords, we signed an acceptable use policy, we watched a powerful film about information sharing and we learnt about digital footprints....

World Book Day


World Book Day got off to a great start with an assembly where we listened to our teachers read an extract from their favourite book. Then, dressed as amazing characters from books we enjoy, we did some paired reading with Year 3. 

Paired reading with Year 3

Chinese Culture Day


To launch Mandarin as our chosen modern foreign language we immersed ourselves in a variety of activities to find out more about China's diverse culture.


We started the day by exercising our bodies and minds with some tai chi. Before trying some different Chinese teas, we learnt about the importance of tea in China and how it is served very differently to here. Most of us preferred the black tea and we were surprised by how much you could smell and taste the jasmine in the green tea with jasmine. Finally, we spent the afternoon learning how to count from 1-10 in Mandarin as well as learning some hand gestures for these numbers that were needed in the Chinese cup and dice game that we learnt to play. 

Tai Chi

Chinese tea tasting

Cup and dice game

Term 3

Class Newsletter

Our enquiry: Can change always be reversed?

Science is at the forefront of our minds this term as we launch our first science enquiry. Working scientifically, we will start by looking at the different properties of materials, including thermal and electrical conductivity, hardness, absorbency and solubility. Having classified various materials according to their different properties, we will move onto investigating  reversible and irreversible changes. On the 30th of January we are going to attend a workshop at @Bristol before planning, designing and leading our own science workshop back at school as our challenge. 

5CG's reflections


"I've enjoyed doing tag rugby because I enjoy playing sport" (Cerys)


"I have found science very interesting. I liked doing the thermal conductivity experiment when we covered the cups." (Bethany)


"Rugby is really fun because I can help people to learn new skills that I already know from playing rugby outside of school." (Adam)


"This term I have enjoyed gymnastics." (Kiera)


"Using the Deines in maths helps me to picture the sum in my head." (Ross)


"I've enjoyed looking at the different stories in our reading lesson. I like Room for One More because it is a scary story and I enjoy scary stories." (Piper)


"This term I have enjoyed using bar method because it is easy and it is useful." (Charlie)

@Bristol- Changing materials workshop

The workshop ended with a bang!

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The Highwayman

In English we are reading The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes. The first verse exposed us to some beautiful use of figurative language to describe the setting. 

Inspired by what we had just read, we used figurative language to describe the wonderfully illustrated setting on the first page. Here is Jamie's setting description to give you a taste of what we produced. 

PE - Bridges

Our indoor PE unit this term is gymnastics where we are focusing on creating a range of bridge shapes with the back, front or side of our body towards the floor or apparatus. We are working towards creating a sequence that includes two high bridges and a low bridge. We will be using turning and rolls to move between them. Above are some of the bridge shapes we have done so far. 

LoE: Can change always be reversed?

Thermal Conductivity

We got creative with our mug insulation ideas and put them to the test to see which material was the best thermal insulator when it came to keeping the water warm. We took readings using a thermometer at five minute intervals and recorded our data on a table (below). We will now use this to create a line graph. 

Electrical Conductivity

We used this investigation as an opportunity to also look at symbols used to draw circuits. 

Moh's scale of hardness

We really enjoyed scratching the different rocks and placing them on Moh's scale! 


Whilst investigating which material would be best for mopping up spills, we worked scientifically by focusing on fair testing and controlling the variables. 

Our enquiry: Are Sikh stories important today?

We are starting off this new term with an RE enquiry. We will be enjoying a wide variety of Sikh stories and looking more deeply at what can be learnt from them by focusing on these three questions:


What is the meaning/theme of this story?

Are these themes important in today’s world?

How is this story relevant today to Sikhs/non-Sikhs?

The Founding of the Khalsa

We retold part of the story of The Founding of the Khalsa, a story of how Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru, created the Khalsa. 

The Story of Guru Ram Das and The Story of Bhai Lalo

In groups we acted out two other Sikh stories. Both taught us about the value of being hard working and the Story of Guru Ram Das showed how perseverance is rewarded. 
The Milk and the Jasmine Flower is a story about how there is always room for more goodness in the world. Guru Nanak proves this by floating a jasmine flower in a full bowl of milk that had been sent to him as a message that there was no room for him in the city of Multan. We made our own flowers out of paper and floated them in milk. 

Term 2


Class Newsletter

Our enquiry: Were all Vikings brutal plunderers?

This term, as historians, we are investigating whether all Vikings were brutal plunderers. In order to answer this question, we will learn all about who the Vikings were, how and why they invaded and what impact they had on our land. Before this, we will look at what Britain was like after the Romans left and the Anglo-Saxons came. Furthermore, we will train to become informed and persuasive debaters, learning form the best in Westminster, then later putting our debating skills to good use to debate the big question: Were all Vikings brutal plunderers? 

Weeks 5 - 7


The great debate!
After transforming our classroom into the House of Commons, we were finally ready to put our discussion skills to the test and debate our enquiry question, 'Were all Vikings brutal plunderers?'

Following the strict conventions of the House of Commons, we presented clear and convincing arguments, strengthened by our detailed historical knowledge and understanding. Our expert discussion skills enabled us to both support our side and challenge the opposition with confidence.

So, what's the truth? Were all Vikings brutal plunderers? After a heated debate, we joined forces with Miss Thompson's class for the final vote. As you can see, the large majority thought that not all Vikings were brutal plunderers. Do you agree?


Lights, camera, action! We used iMovie to create trailer-style films about the Viking raid on Lindisfarne in 793 AD. Now, we're writing historical accounts from the perspectives of a Viking raider and an English monk.

Lindisfarne iMovie trailer 1

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Lindisfarne iMovie trailer 2

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Lindisfarne iMovie trailer 3

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Weeks 1 - 4


Collective worship

5CG led collective worship today where we shared what we have learnt so far about the Vikings as we continue to look for evidence to answer our enquiry question. We'll done 5CG, I felt very proud of you!  Thank you to all the parents and carers that came to watch us. 


The rain held off long enough for us to kick start our enquiry with a game of Capture the Flag. In our teams, we came up with some cunning hiding places for our flag and then we talked tactics so that we could both protect our flag and capture our opponent's flag! We also designed some beautiful Viking shields that are now proudly displayed on our classroom door. 

First World War Week

Writing letters by candlelight

After such an exciting and informative week we put ourselves in the soldier's shoes for one final time and wrote letters from the Western Front by candlelight. 

Our propaganda posters

Trench digging!

'Digging the trenches was great! When you get trench foot, does it just happen or does it build up slowly?' (Aaliyah)


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In his replica standard issue Army uniform from 1914, Lance Corporal Evans put us through our paces.

Year 6 teach us about the war! 

First World War week has got off to a tremendous start. We started the day listening to the BBC school radio programme Archie Dobson's War. It was interesting to listen to a child's perspective of what was occurring. We then split into groups and the Year 6's became our teachers! They created fun games for us to play. Before we knew it we had learnt loads! Ask us some names of ships and about what happened on the home front....

Term 1

Class Newsletter

Our enquiry: What might Skellig be?

Weeks 5 - 8

Sequel Chapters

After we finished Skellig, we planned and wrote sequel chapters which featured Michael's sister, Joy, ten years on. We included vivid setting and character description and we focused carefully on creating suspense to engage the reader. We recorded three examples of our sequel chapters to share with you. Now we're going to tweet David Almond. We can't wait to find out what he thinks! Watch this space!

Joao's sequel chapter

Aaliyah's sequel chapter (read by Thomas)

Piper's sequel chapter

Scrapbook Challenge

We can't quite believe it but we have finally finished our first enquiry. We have really enjoyed being part of Michael's voyage of discovery and piecing together our thoughts about what Skellig might be. These are our wonderful scrapbook pages with our ideas! Whereas some of us are certain about what Skellig is, others of us still remain puzzled due to the complex nature of this character. If you ever get a chance to read the book (we all think you should!) we would love to hear what you think Skellig might be...

Why can Skellig fly?

Finding out that Skellig had wings was an exciting moment! We then puzzled over the role of wings in flight and how birds are able to fly in general. Inspired by Mina's explanation of pneumatisation, we focused our investigation on bones, looking for the similarities and differences between human and bird bones. It really got us thinking about Skellig's bones. Are they hollow like that of a bird?


Is Skellig an owl?

We created these fabulous fact files as throughout the story we noticed many similarities between Skellig's behaviour and eating habits and that of an owl.

'Drawing makes you look at the world more closely. It helps you to see what you're looking at more clearly.'

Taking inspiration from Mina and her love of birds, we put our drawing skills to the test thanks to Mr Carleton who very kindly brought in a selection of his finest racing pigeons for us to draw. We tried to produce different tones and textures using hatching, cross-hatching, stippling and scumbling. 

Weeks 1 - 4

What is Arthritis?

We found out that Skellig has arthritis so we wanted to learn more about it.

Who is in the garage?

After moving to a new house on Falconer Road, Michael discovers something in the garage. A lovely group from 5CG have given up some of their lunchtime and used their creative skills to recreate this important moment in the story. 


In English we have started reading Skellig by  David Almond. We suspect there might be a link between the book and our enquiry as Miss Gayton has kept the front cover a secret and covered it in feathers! 

Is it a bird? Is it a Pegasus? Is it an angel?

Week 4 saw the start of our enquiry. After arriving to a great big danger sign across our classroom door and a room full of feathers we puzzled over what it could all mean! We examined the feathers closely, did some research on the iPads and collected all our thoughts on a mind-map. We are looking forward to finding out more! 

Science Week

5CG loved week three as this was science week! Our skills and knowledge were tested as we had a go at completing a variety of activities and experiments. We showed some great team work, problem solved and made predictions. Here are some photos of some of the things we got up to.

Spaghetti Challenge! A big thank you from 5CG to all the parents that came to help us!


60 Second Challenge - Could we keep a marble rolling for 60 seconds?

Value Day

Day 3 was all about the school values. As a class we focused on perseverance and thought about all of the different situations when we would persevere and why. Here a group is doing a piece of drama showing perseverance in a race.    

Poetry Days

We immersed ourselves in poetry for the first couple of days of the new term. Year 5 looked in greater detail at 'Sky in the Pie' by Roger McGough. We not only were part of a fantastic year group performance, but we also had fun performing some of the verses in class. Here is a group performing the first verse of the poem...

'Sky in the Pie' by Roger McGough

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