Otter Class 2016 -17

Mrs Connolly and Mrs Dunham – Year 3 and Year 4

Otter Autumn Topic Web

Termly Overview Otter Spring 2017

Termly Overview – Otter Class – Summer 2017

What a fantastic year we have had in Otter Class! The children should feel very proud of all their achievements this year.  Have a wonderful summer holidays and we will see you again September.

Week beginning July 10th 2017 

DT – Having decided on our final designs, we made our kites and then had great fun flying them.

Maths/Science – We worked in groups to test various hypotheses regarding body measurements (e.g. your height is 6 times the length of your foot or your height is 3 times the circumference of your head).

Sports day – Enjoyed by all!

Week beginning July 3rd 2017 

Sponsored walk – On Tuesday we enjoyed our sponsored walk to Little Thetford.


Games morning – We also managed to squeeze in our whole-school games morning, in between the torrential downpours! We took part in lots of different sporting activities in house teams, thinking about the core sporting values – respect, passion, honesty, team work, self-belief and determination.

Week beginning June 26th 2017 

DT – This week we made kite prototypes, deciding what shape and material made the best kites. We made our frames from paper straws, plastic tubes and wooden skewers. The body of the kites were made out of different types of paper (wall paper, crepe paper, tissue paper, newspaper, sugar paper and card).


Explorer’s Area – On Tuesday morning, Mrs Johnson took us to the explorer’s area. We had a fantastic morning making s’mores and popcorn on the campfire, learning how to safely start fires with Mr Fromont, pond dipping, tree climbing and general outdoor fun in the mud kitchen! We finished the morning with songs around the campfire in the rain.  We all had a great time!


Week beginning June 19th 2017 

Spanish: In Spanish, we have been learning the key phonic sounds (with actions!).


English: In English this week, we have been writing our own adventure stories inspired by the adventures of Sinbad the Sailor. We started by acting out a scene where Sinbad encounters a terrible monster.

Week beginning June 12th 2017 

Science: As part of our unit on ‘States of Matter’, we looked at the water cycle. We discussed the different stages of the cycle, set up a model in class to simulate it and then wrote a summary, using the correct scientific language.


Maths: This week we revisited shape and geometry. Here we are identifying lines of symmetry and completing symmetric patterns.

Music:  We enjoyed our first lesson of the year playing the ocarina.

Week beginning June 5th 2017 

History & English: In our English and History sessions this week, we have consolidated our learning on an early Islamic civilization and produced a project booklet, using the laptops, filled with everything we’ve learned so far this term. After finishing our projects, we shared them with the rest of the class.


PE: This week in swimming we have been working on our front crawl leg kick.

Music & Drama:  We have listened to an orchestral piece of music called ‘Scheherazade’ by Rimsky-Korsakov, which is based on The Arabian Nights.  We discussed the mood of the music and how it relates to the story and then worked in groups to produce mimes to tell the story in combination with the music.


Week beginning May 22nd 2017 

English: In English, we’ve been writing a newspaper report based on the events in a story from the Arabian Nights, The Flying Horse.


Maths: We’ve been consolidating our learning on fractions; we had to cut our pizzas into equal slices!

RE: We started to create PowerPoint presentations about the holy book of Islam, The Qur’an.

Week beginning May 15th 2017 

Class trip: On Monday, we went to the mosque in Peterborough and learned lots about Islam and the way Muslims pray. Despite the wet weather, we really enjoyed a picnic at Ferry Meadows afterwards.


Maths: In Maths, we’ve been adding and subtracting with money. We enjoyed playing the game ‘MonopOtterly’ to give us lots of practice!

Art: In preparation for the Stretham Feast on Sunday, we made some pop-art inspired artwork to decorate the float. Hopefully lots of you will see it for yourselves on Sunday.

Week beginning May 8th 2017 

Science – This week we investigated the melting points of different materials.


Art – In art this week, we made our own versions of Aladdin’s lamp out of clay. Mrs Connolly has taken them to be fired. We can’t wait to see what they look like when they return.


Maths – In Maths, we were consolidating our learning on division by grouping.

Week beginning May 1st 2017 

RE – We have been learning about Islam and how Muslims worship. This week we looked at the important features of a mosque in preparation for our trip to Peterborough mosque next week.

Maths – In Maths, we were solving multiplication problems in a fast-paced game of “Blockbusters”.


English – During our English sessions, we have been reading the story of ‘Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves’. We held a debate in the classroom, with children either supporting or opposing the motion that “Ali Baba was an innocent hero”.

Week beginning April 24th 2017 

Maths – This week our focus has been addition and subtraction. We started by practising and improving our mental maths strategies by playing games.  We played ‘Additiotraction’, a Harry Potter inspired maths duelling game, and ‘Snakes and Ladders’ with a twist.


History – This week we started our new topic ‘Explore the Exotic’ by looking at Ancient Islamic Civilizations. We wrote interesting fact cards to record what we had learnt.

Art – We learnt that Islam discourages images of people, places and animals, as Muslims believe it encourages people to worship things other than God. Instead, Muslims decorate their religious buildings with geometric patterns made out of coloured tiles.  We made our own tiles to decorate our display board.

Week beginning April 19th 2017 

English – We started our new book, Arabian Nights, which is full of exciting stories. After hearing the beginning of the story ‘The Fisherman and the Genie’, we had a go at predicting the ending.  We used drama to share our predictions with the rest of the class, before writing our own story endings.


PE – This week we worked on our fielding skills, using a game that required excellent team work!


Week beginning March 27th 2017 

English – After looking at lots of different promotional leaflets, we made our own leaflets to persuade people to visit a fictional place, based on the story of ‘Dolphin Boy’ by Michael Morpurgo.

DT – The next exciting instalment of our ‘Edible Garden’ topic involved understanding where and how tomatoes are grown in the UK and around the world. We tried 4 different varieties, evaluating their appearance, smell, texture and taste.

Music – On Monday, two of our very talented pupils performed some beautiful violin music to the rest of the school. Well done Megan and Selina!

Easter Egg Hunt – On Thursday, we all enjoyed an Easter egg hunt around the school grounds.

Week beginning March 20th 2017 

DT – During our DT lesson this week, we made strawberry and banana smoothies, by mashing bananas and strawberries and adding strawberry yoghurt and milk. They were delicious!


Maths – In Maths, we have been working on symmetry, rotation, angles and properties of shape.

PSHE – This week, to help Miss Smith (our new trainee teacher) get to know us a bit better, we thought about all the ‘likes’ we share with others and formed a web of friendship.

Week beginning March 13th 2017 

Science – To celebrate Science Week, we have been enjoying lots of varied activities. We particularly enjoyed investigating ‘camouflage’. We played the role of ‘predators’, searching for wool ‘worms’ in the bushes. There were equal amounts of worms in five different colours. We found the blue and pink worms very easily, but the brown ones were difficult to spot. We concluded that if we were worms we’d want to be brown!


We also got very messy investigating the rather unusual properties of ‘gloop’ (made by mixing cornflour with water). A solid or a liquid?  Try it at home and see for yourself.

D&T – Continuing with our theme of the ‘Edible Garden’, we closely examined strawberries and drew a detailed sketch of the outside and the inside (before eating them!)

Art – The Otter Gallery has been updated with our latest Monet inspired masterpieces for the school to enjoy. Come and have a look!

Week beginning March 6th 2017 

Music – We have listened to a piece of music by the Czech composer Smetana, which depicts the journey of the Vltava River. We explored a melody that is used throughout the music, using glockenspiels, and shared ideas for our own river compositions.


D&T – This week, we made our own pesto using basil, garlic, olive oil, pine nuts, lemon and a pinch of salt. We added it to pasta and then enjoyed tasting it.  Delicious!


Science – During our science lesson this week, we went on an ‘Invertebrate Hunt’ in the explorer’s area as part of our topic on habitats.

Week beginning February 27th 2017 

Science – We had a go at sorting vertebrates using a classification key. We then designed our own branching keys and tested them.

Art – This week, we made our own printing tiles inspired by Hokusai’s Mount Fuji series of prints.

PE – We enjoyed our second session with an FA skills coach, who is teaching us this half term. This week, we worked in teams playing various tag-type games (with and without a ball) to help us think about tactics we might use on a football pitch.

Week beginning February 20th 2017 

Maths – We carried out an investigation to see whether the total length of someone’s fingers is equal to the length of one of their arms. We practised using both cm and mm for our measurements and compared our results to test the accuracy of our measuring.


RE – We learned about the Easter story and re-enacted the part where Judas betrayed Jesus. We then ordered the key events.

DT – This week, we started our “Edible Garden” project by investigating herbs and then planting our own.

Week beginning February 6th 2017

Geography – In Geography this week, we used our atlas skills to locate the 7 biggest rivers in the world.


Maths – As well as problem solving, we also looked at converting between different units of measure (eg. millilitres to litres and vice-versa).

Science – We constructed and interpreted food chains.

Week beginning January 30th 2017

Science – We re-created the human digestive system in the classroom, using everyday objects. It was very messy and a lot of fun!

Topic – This week, we were lucky enough to have a visit from mountaineer, Mollie Hughes. She became one of the youngest British climbers to summit Mount Everest, at the age of just 21. Mollie is planning to return to Mount Everest to attempt to summit from the North side, via Tibet. If successful, she will become the youngest Briton to climb Everest from both sides and also the first English woman to summit from both sides.

We learnt about some of the challenges facing climbers on Everest and then wrote questions to ask Mollie. We thoroughly enjoyed the talk by our visitor and then a Q&A session, when we put some of our questions to Mollie.

Art – Before we started our final piece of artwork, inspired by the work of Monet, we peer assessed our previous efforts and decided how we could improve our paintings.

Week beginning January 23rd 2017

Maths – Continuing our work on fractions, we have focussed on problem solving and reasoning this week.


English – We used drama to get us thinking about a possible conversation between the characters in ‘The Wind in the Willows’, before writing the dialogue using the correct punctuation for direct speech.

PSHE – We have been learning about diversity within our communities and this week we discussed ‘discrimination’. We thought about all the different reasons why people might suffer discrimination.

Week beginning January 16th 2017

Science – To learn about tooth decay, we carried out an investigation to examine the effects of various soft drinks on eggshells.

Maths – This week, we continued our work on fractions. Here we are sorting equivalent fractions.

PE – In Dance, we are working on a class dance, based on the theme of ‘Sports’. This week, we worked in small groups to create short phrases, with a focus of moving in unison.

Week beginning January 9th 2017

Geography – We used Digimaps and Google Earth to track a river from its source to the sea.

English – This week, we started our new book “The Wind in the Willows”. We had a go at giving an oral recount of Mole’s adventures on the river bank (during pretend telephone conversations), before writing a letter in role.


Art – We mixed and matched colours from a Monet painting, using powder paint.

Science – We conducted a comparative test of the stain removal properties of different types of toothpaste.

Week beginning December 12th 2016

Christmas Crafts – We have been busy preparing our special fingerprint gift tags to sell at the school Christmas fair.

craft-1 craft-2 craft-3 craft-4 craft-5

Music – Here we are practising our Otter Christmas rap for the Church service next week.

music-1 music-2 music-3 music-4 music-5 music-6

Maths – We have been drawing and interpreting bar graphs and working in pairs to complete various Maths challenges.

maths-6 maths-5 maths-4 maths-3 maths-2 maths-1

Art – We finished our Cezanne-style still life pictures

001 003 004 005 008 009 010 011 012 013 014 015 016 017 018 019 020 021 022 023 026 027 028 029 030 031 002 006 007 024 025

Week beginning December 5th 2016

English – We worked hard to improve our dictionary skills.

english-1 english-2 english-3 english-4 english-5

Maths – We calculated time intervals using both analogue and digital times.

maths-1 maths-2 maths-3 maths-4 maths-5 maths-6

Christmas Craft Morning in Otter Classroom

007 008 011 012 013 014 015 016 017 018 021 024 026 029 030 032 035 037

Week beginning November 28th 2016

Art – We continued work on our Cezanne-style still life pictures.

art-8 art-7 art-6 art-5 art-4 art-3 art-2 art-1

Science – We investigated the permeability of different soils.

science-1 science-2 science-3 science-4 science-5 science-6


Week beginning November 21st 2016

Science – We enjoyed an afternoon in the explorer’s area, making our own mini-compost bins, to learn about soil.

science-4 science-3 science-1 science-2 science-5 science-6 science-7 science-8 science-9 science-10 science-11 science-12 science-13 science-14 science-15

French – We have been learning how to talk about the weather.

french-1 french-2 french-3 french-4 french-5 french-6


Week beginning November 14th 2016

PSHE – We shared our ideas on what we think makes a good friend.

pshe-1 pshe-2 pshe-3 pshe-4 pshe-5 pshe-6

History/Geography – This week, we used atlases and Digimaps to locate places along Hadrian’s Wall.

history-1 history-2 history-3 history-4 history-5

PE – We enjoyed using the nets in our last tennis lesson with the coach from Witchford Village College.

pe-1 pe-2 pe-3 pe-4 pe-5


Week beginning November 7th 2016

Science – To begin our topic on Soil and Rocks, we had a go at grouping and naming different types of rocks; we decided whether they were igneous, metamorphic or sedimentary.

science-1 science-2 science-3 science-4 science-5 science-6

Maths – We have focused on money this week, adding amounts of money, finding change and solving problems involving money.

maths-1 maths-2 maths-3 maths-4 maths-5


Week beginning October 31st 2016

English – We re-told the story of ‘Elf Road’ with actions and expressions.

english-1 english-2 english-3

Art – This week, our aim was to produce a detailed pencil sketch of a leaf.

art-1 art-2 art-3 art-4 art-5 art-6

PE – We enjoyed some more tennis with a coach from Witchford Village College.

pe-1 pe-2 pe-3 pe-4 pe-5 pe-6


Week beginning October 17th 2016

English – We wrote speeches to persuade Mrs Dunham that the Romans were good builders. We had to deliver our speeches to the rest of the class (and Mrs Dunham of course).

english-6 english-5 english-4 english-3 english-2 english-1

Computing – We have been enjoying using our new school email system.

computing-1 computing-2 computing-3 computing-4 computing-5

DT – This week, we explored aqueducts and then used paper engineering to build a model aqueduct (not as easy as it sounds!)

dt-1 dt-2 dt-3 dt-4 dt-5


Week beginning October 10th 2016

English – We have been working on paragraphs this week. Here we are identifying the main ideas from paragraphs and summarising them.

english-1 english-2 english-3

History – We made timelines to show the spread of the Roman Empire.

history-1 history-2 history-3 history-4 history-5

Maths – We worked in pairs to decide on the best strategy to use for lots of different subtractions.

maths-1 maths-2 maths-3 maths-4 maths-5


Week beginning October 3rd 2016

PE In PE, we have been competing in teams to test our speed, skill, stamina and agility.

pe-1 pe-2 pe-3 pe-4 pe-5

DT We have been testing the strength of arches with different heights and spans.

dt-1 dt-2 dt-3

Science In this week’s science lesson we enjoyed investigating whether materials were opaque, translucent or transparent.

science-1 science-2 science-3 science-4 science-5


Week beginning September 26th 2016

Class Trip – This week we enjoyed a fantastic trip to Colchester Museum, where we explored the Roman vaults, built models of Celtic roundhouses and Roman villas and even had a go at chariot racing!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12


Week beginning September 19th 2016

DT – We built Roman structures using columns and pediments.

dt-1 dt-2 dt-3 dt-4 dt-5 dt-6

English – We had a go at peer-assessing some of our written work.

english-1 english-2 english-3

History – To explore life in Roman Britain, we pretended that the explorer’s area was a Celtic village and re-enacted some of the daily chores and activities.

history-1 history-2 history-3 history-4 history-5 history-6


Week beginning September 12th 2016

Roman Soldier Visit – We had a visit from a Roman Soldier who brought artefacts and weapons to show us. He talked to us about life in Britain before and after the Roman invasion and explained how the Roman army was so successful.

roman-visitor-2 roman-visitor-3 roman-visitor-4 roman-visitor-5 roman-visitor

Roald Dahl Day – We read about Roald Dahl in our English lesson in the morning and in the afternoon we joined in with Roald Dahl day live!

roald-dahl-day-2 roald-dahl-day-3 roald-dahl-day

Computing – We made a database.

database-2 database-3 database


Week beginning September 5th 2016


Roman Soldiers – We practised marching together as a class in one long row and rows of 10 to work together as the Roman Army did! We also made a pledge for the forthcoming year, these will be on display outside Otter Class soon!

roman-soldiers-marching-1 roman-soldiers-marching-2 roman-soldiers-marching-3 roman-soldiers-marching-4 roman-soldiers-marching-5 roman-soldiers-marching-6

soldier-1 soldier-2 soldier-3 soldier-4 soldier-5

Making Tiles – We designed and painted tiles with our initials on. They will be used to choose the helping hand and will form a display on our radiator as they are magnetic!

tiles-1 tiles-2 tiles-3 tiles-4 tiles-5 tiles-6