Year 5 and Year 6 Curriculum Topics
Key Stage One Curriculum Overviews are found in the links below.
Click on the link below for our 'Written Calculations Policy' which outlines which calculations methods are taught in each year group.
Each term we go on an exciting ‘Journey around the Globe’ to learn all about our incredible world. We visit past and present times and places, meet new people, ask questions and learn lots of new things. Are you ready? Let’s get started then!
Please scroll down for 2018/2019 topics.
Autumn Term 2017 – Investigate the Beginning of Time
We are off on a learning journey right back to the Stone Age. This will be fun!
In History we learn about the changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age and what life was like in this period. We find out about changes that happened during this period and learn about the settlement Skara Brae. We use artefacts to help us find out what life was like then.
In Design and Technology we design, make and evaluate a moving mechanism for grinding stone or grain. We investigate vehicles with moving cams mechanisms and how they work as well as investigating ways of strengthening structures for moving a mechanism. We will also experiment with a variety of materials, tools and techniques (for movement and strengthening structure).
In Art we learn the basics of making and using our own brushes, paint and charcoal. We are taught to mix colours and about the timeline of colour. We learn to make an extended colour wheel and make our own brushes and paint. We examine prehistoric art and paint our own prehistoric art using paint and brushes that we have made.
In Computing we are doing two topics 'We are Game Developers’ and ‘We are Artists’. During the ‘We are Artists’ unit children explore geometric art, taking inspiration from the work of Escher, Riley and traditional Islamic art, as well as experimenting with complex ‘fractal’ landscapes. During the ‘We are Game Developers’ unit children explore how to use Scratch programming tools to create their own games using algorithms.
In PSHE we spend the first week of term thinking about ‘Being Me in My World’. We learn about our role and responsibilities as a Global Citizen and how a democratic voice can benefit our school.
Later on in the term we Celebrate Differences which means we learn about people living with disabilities and how society perceives them. We learn to appreciate people for who they are, not how they look.
In RE we as the question 'Why do People Believe God Exists?'. We explore the reasons why and also the reasons why people are atheists and agnostics.
In PE we do Creative Dance and Gymnastics.
In Creative Dance we make shapes, levels and direction using body actions. Also we develop air and floor pathways and dance with a prop. We use the skills learnt to tell a story through dance using the dynamics of strong and light music.
In Gymnastics we learn to perform symmetrical and asymmetrical movements on the floor and transfer into apparatus. Also, we learn to perform balance and counterbalance movements on mats.
Our first Science topic is ‘Everything Changes'. We we learn about:
- Variation in organisms (resulting in species becoming better adapted to its environment)
- The process of natural selection over a long period of time, and how this leads to evolution
- How inherited characteristics are passed on from parents to offspring and that environmental variables also affect how organisms look and behave
- The process of selective breeding
Our second science topic is: ‘The Nature Library' and we:
- Deepen our understanding of why and how organisms are classified
- Explore the process of classification in some detail and how it differs from, but relates to the identification of living things
- Explore the structure, function and purpose of classification systems
- Become aware of the types and characteristics of organisms that belong in each of the five kingdoms of living things (animals, plants, fungi, bacteria and Protista) and major sub-groups.
- How Linnaeus developed the system of classifying all living things using their observable characteristics.
We continue with our weekly French lessons learning how to hold a conversation and continuing to build up our vocabulary.
We also have a weekly Music lesson taught by our music teacher where we develop our music skills as well as the opportunity to learn to play the trumpet, trombone, clarinet, flute or violin in small group sessions.
Now it is time to move on in our learning journey. Where will the spring term take us?
Spring Term 2018 - The Land of Myths and Legends
Here we are in Spring 2016 so let’s go on a fascinating journey to the Land of Myths and Legends.
In History we learn about Ancient Greece. We find out about Greek life and achievements and how they influenced the western world.
We are not doing a lot of Geography this term because we are spending more time on our history. However, we obviously will know where Greece is!
In Design and Technology we design, make and evaluate some footwear, textile slippers in fact.
In Art we develop our drawing skills, using different pencils to create line and tone. We then use these skills to make a detailed drawing of a mythical creature.
In Computing we cover two units; We are Web Developers’ and ‘We are Architects’. During ‘We are Web Developers’ children learn about setting up webpages with a focus on e-safety. During ‘We are Architects’ children explore how to create an virtual art gallery using 'Trimble Sketch Up'.
In PSHE we learn about Our Dreams and Goals which means we think about our futures and investigate jobs and careers. We focus on our own dreams and goals, share these with our friends and support each other in trying to achieve them.
In RE we learn about Sikhism and the beliefs and practices of Sikhs.
In PE we learn a Folk Dance and play Games. In Folk Dance we hear and use folk music from the four countries of the United Kingdom and learn simple dance steps.
In Games we learn ball handling and kicking skills. Also we learn striking skills using hand and racket. Using our learnt skills we play small ball and striking games.
We love being scientists and we can’t wait to begin investigating! Our first Science topic is: ‘Everyday Materials’ where we:
- Learn why specific properties of certain materials make them suitable for particular uses
- Explore familiar objects and accidental scientific discoveries (e.g. non sticky glue used in post-it note by Spencer Silver)
Our second science topic is: ‘Materials: All Change’ and we:
- Learn about eversible and non-reversible changes
- Describe how materials change
- Learn about changes of state that take place when materials are heated or cooled,
Summer Term 2018 – Journey to Waterworld
In Geography we learn about the River Thames and how important it is for economic activity including trade links, past and present. We need to do some field work so we go on a journey around the Thames. We will learn about the water cycle.
In Design and Technology we are all chefs this term, British Chefs and that is because we design, make and cook our very own pie! We have fun experimenting with ingredients and pastry.
In Art we
In Computing we 'We are Cryptographers’ and 'We are Bloggers’. During ‘We are Cryptographers’ children learn about communicating information securely through an introduction to cryptography (the science of keeping communication and information secret). Children also look at early forms of communication and create secure passwords. During ‘We are Bloggers’ children use a secure internet platform (school website) to create blogging rooms to comment on current issues in school and each other’s work.
In Music each week children continue to play their instrument, trombone, flute, clarinet or trumpet.
In PSHE we learn about Emotions, about feelings of love and loss and how to deal with these appropriately. We learn about the importance of technology and how we can use it to help our learning and to communicate safely with our friends.
Later in the term Y6 children learn how their bodies are changing and about human reproduction.
In PE we do Outdoor Adventure Activities and Athletics.
In Outdoor Adventure Activities we learn orienteering skills by doing walking activities and outdoor challenges.
In Athletics we run a distance, learn relay, sprinting, jumping for distance and height, throwing using a javelin, shot put and discus skills. We compete in all these athletics skills during our whole school summer Sports Day.
In Science we go into depth about how our bodies work. We:
- learn about the human circulatory system
- find out about the main parts of the circulatory system: the heart, blood vessels (arteries, veins and capillaries) and blood, and how these work together
- learn how water is transported through the body
- develop a deeper understanding of what constitutes a healthy diet
- learn about the impact of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle has on the way our bodies function
We've finished another great year of learning and now we say goodbye to everyone in Y6 and we're off on a lovely summer holiday, bye!
Autumn Term 2018 – Journey to the Earth and Beyond
To start off the year we go on our first learning journey, what will we find there?
In Geography we learn a lot about the globe (not our school!). We learn to identify the position and significance of latitude, longitude, Equator, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, Arctic and Antarctic Circle. When doing this we learn about world time zones and the Prime/Greenwich Meridian (including day and night). You can’t learn about time zones without a visit to Greenwich; how lucky are we to live in London!
We don’t do a history this term but there is lots of history in our next two topics.
In Design and Technology we design, make and evaluate bread from all around the world. We have great fun tasting a variety of world breads! When doing this we learn how bread ingredients are grown and processed as well as using a variety of cooking techniques. We learn how to make break and then design, make and evaluate our own bread. Tasty!
In Art we make sculptures using natural materials which we collect from our environment. We learn about the work of Richard Long who is a British sculptor, photographer and painter and is known as a ‘land artist’. He goes on epic walks and adjusts the natural features of a place to create art. We visit Epping Forest to create art there which we photograph as well as to collect some natural materials to bring back to school to work with.
Our first science topic is ‘The Earth and Beyond’ where we learn about the movement of the earth and other planets, the earth’s rotation to explain day and night and the apparent movement of the sun across the sky and describe the movement of the moon relative to the earth.
Our second science topic is about ‘Forces’ where we learn about gravitational attraction and drag forces – friction, air resistance, water resistance and up-thrust in water. We also learn how mechanisms including levers, pulleys and gears allow a smaller force to have greater effect and apply all this knowledge in different investigations
We write lots on our journey, look out for our space adventure stories, our bread recipes and our explanation books.
Not everything we do is linked to the Earth and Beyond!
In Computing we are ‘App Planners’ and we investigate whether we can design a new app. We learn how to use App Inventor and App Shed. Also in Computing we are ‘Project Managers’ and develop our skills in managing a project. To help with this we use Google Apps for Education and spreadsheets.
In Music we learn some gospel spiritual songs (Black History Month). We learn about the historical context of these songs; why did they sing and work and sing three different songs in medley? We play 'Steal Away' on tuned percussion and in parts. In the second half of the term we learn about Jazz, finding out about the birth of jazz. We sing ‘Blue Moon’ and analyse the structure. We learn 'Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man'. Then we look at a Blues scale.
In PSHE we spend the first week of term thinking about ‘Being Me in My World’. We think about our personal roles within the school as well as our rights and responsibilities as a British citizen. We find out how our school benefits from a Learning Charter.
Later on in the term we ‘Celebrate Differences’ which means we research and find out about our own and different cultures. We learn how happiness is independent of material possessions and how to live in a tolerant society.
In PE we do Creative Dance and Gymnastics.
In Creative Dance we make shapes, levels and direction using body actions. Also we develop air and floor pathways and dance with a prop. We use the skills learnt to tell a story through dance using the dynamics of strong and light music. In Gymnastics we learn to perform symmetrical and asymmetrical movements on the floor and transfer into apparatus. Also, we learn to perform balance and counterbalance movements on mats.
In RE we learn about different cultures and religions found around the world. We learn about Buddhism in our unit “What is it like to be a follower of Buddha?”
In December our parents come to see everything that we have learned. They have fun hearing and reading our stories, looking at our land art sculptures and of course tasting our delicious bread.
Now it’s off somewhere new, it’s time to study one particular place in detail, how about South America?
Spring Term 2019 – The Wilds of South America
Next we head off to the Wilds of South America. Get ready, it’s going to be loads of fun.
In Geography we develop our knowledge of place and what an amazing place we are going to, the Rainforests of South America! We learn how different it is to where we live. We learn about biomes (regions of the world with similar climate, animals and plants) and vegetation belts. You can’t go to South America without learning something about the incredible Amazon River. We learn about the natural resources found here.
In History we learn about a South American early civilization, the Mayans c. AD 900 which provides a contrast to British history. Did you know that the Mayans established their cities in the rainforest? They also developed astronomy, calendar and writing systems as well as building elaborate pyramids and observatories.
In Design and Technology we design, build and evaluate our own shelters. Imagine you have to spend several night in the Amazon forest, what would your shelter look like and why?
In Music we learn all about samba! You have to if you visit South America! We learn some basic samba rhythms and make group compositions. In the second half of the term we identify orchestra families, using Vivaldi’s "Four Seasons". We explore timbre and texture and write our own 'Seasons'.
In Art we look closely at carnival masks and their history in South America. We collect and explore patterns in South American culture and then we use patterns and shapes to design our own carnival masks or headdress. We visit the British Museum where we study and collect patterns. We focus on the life and work of the artist Leonora Carrington.
Our first science topic is ‘Circle of Life’ where we learn about the life cycles of some familiar (and some less familiar) mammals, amphibians, insects and birds (There are lots to be found in the Amazon!) and their habitats. We also learn about endangered animals and how humans are supporting some endangered animals to increase their population numbers.
Our second science topic is: ‘Our Changing World’ where we observe and monitor changes in the environment and refine our skills of observation, measurement, testing, recording and communication.
We write lots and you will be able to read lots of information about the rainforest and South American explorers.
Not everything we do is about South America!
In Computing we are ‘Market Researchers’, focusing on games. We make a presentation on games that are currently on the market and we use Office and Movie Maker for our presentations. Also in Computing we are ‘Interface Designers’ which means that we create avatars, backgrounds, transitions and navigations. We learn lots about PowerPoint.
In PSHE we learn about ‘Healthy Me’ which means we research into various aspects of health, both physical and mental. We discuss, food, drug and alcohol abuse and how to manage stress in our own lives. We learn basic emergency first aid procedures. We also learn what it means to be emotionally well and to recognise personal triggers for stress.
In RE we learn about values and what matters to people the most identifying values in human life and thinking about our own values; with special reference to Christians and Humanists.
In PE we learn a Folk Dance and we play Games.
In Folk Dance we hear and use folk music from the four countries of the United Kingdom and learn simple dance steps. In Games we learn ball handling and kicking skills.
In French we continue to learn how to ask and answers questions, learn the days and months as well as talking about what food we like or dislike.
In March we invite parents to come in to share our learning. They see our South American Carnival at which we play samba music, dress up in our carnival masks and headdresses and perhaps have some samba dancers. We display South American flags and all our work about the rainforest and it’s biomes as well as all our history work about the Mayans.
We’re nearly in our final term, where next?
Summer Term 2019 – Wartime Bethnal Green
To finish off the year we travel back to a much loved place, our city, London where we learn about World War Two and what life was like then.
In History we do a local history study. We learn about Bethnal Green in the 1940s and the impact World War Two had on the people and the area. We then learn about how and why the area has changed right up to the present day. We learn what immigration is. We invite someone from The Stairway to Heaven campaign to come in to talk to us about the Bethnal Green Tube Disaster that sadly happened during WW2.
In Geography we develop our knowledge of place by comparing an area which we know very well, Bethnal Green to another region in the United Kingdom; an area which is very different to Bethnal Green. We look at the human and physical geography of both places comparing similarities and differences. We do a lot of fieldwork in Bethnal Green as well as going to our contrasting area. We spend time learning how to use a compass, as well as using our map skills in particular using four and six figure grid references, symbols and keys. We use a lot of Ordnance Survey maps.
In Design and Technology we design, make and evaluate an alarm/siren which indicates when there is an emergency, something like a WW2 bomb siren! We apply our understanding of computing to program, monitor and control the product.
In Art we look and learn about the work of Henry Moore who depicted life in Bethnal Green during World War Two. We visit the Imperial War Museum to study his work more closely, making sketches to help us with our art. We then create a scene similar to Henry Moore’s using charcoal.
In Computing we are ‘App Developers’ and invent a simple mobile phone app using App Inventor and App Shed. Also in Computing we are ‘Marketers’ and create an advert for out mobile phone app using Publisher and Movie Maker.
In Music we listen to some Wartime Music and learn about and sing Vera Lynn’s 'We'll Meet Again'. We learn about the story of Glen Miller and listen to 'In the Mood' as example of early Big Band music. We also learn about Marlene Dietrich and Nazi Germany. In the second half of the term we learn about film music. We learn about silent film and improvise then compose our own silent film scores. We look at Hitchcock and ET scores, and the different methods of composing. We compose a new score to Jaws, focusing on rhythms!
We will write from a variety of point of view, a child who was sent to the country side during the war, from someone in an air raid shelter and from the point of view of a conscientious objector. Hopefully we can empathise with their feelings and emotions.
Not everything we do is about Wartime Bethnal Green!
In PSHE we learn about Relationships, thinking about our own self esteem in relation to our friends. We begin to learn about relationship between boys and girls and learn how to be safe when online. We also learn about how we are changing. We learn about how babies are conceived and born. We spend time focusing on what we are looking forward to and what worries we have about the transition to secondary schools.
In RE our topic is 'Words of Wisdom' - what can we lean from reflecting on Sikh, Christian and Muslim wisdom? We learn about stories and saying from these religions in order to reflect upon our own values and experiences.
In PE we do Outdoor Adventure Activities.In Outdoor Adventure Activities we learn orienteering skills by doing walking activities and outdoor challenges.
In Athletics we run a distance, learn relay, sprint, jump for distance and height, and throw using a javelin as well as shot put and discus skills. We compete in all these athletics skills during our whole school summer sports day.
Our first Science topic is: ‘Danger! low voltage’ where we learn how electricity is generated and transmitted in different ways (using coal and gas and renewable resources) as well as developing more complex circuits. We use this knowledge to help us create our alarm in our design and technology work.
The second topic is called Light up your World where we learn about mirrors and the reflections they form, ray diagrams and how they can be used to represent the behaviour of light and we explain the formation of shadows and how their size and shape can be affected.
In French, we ask and answer questions, learn to say the date accurately and describe the weather as well as talking about food we like and dislike.
That’s it for this year, I wonder where our Journey around the Globe will take us next year?