In a galaxy far, far away…… Star Warts!

The Key Stage 2 Summer Production was back with an explosion of song, dancing and some very dubious jokes called: Star Warts – The Umpire Strikes Back! The play told the story of a group of intrepid, albeit slightly hapless, space travellers; Luke Warmwater, Princess Nebula, Zak Solo, Toby Wonky Nosebleed, Daft Ada and the droids Qwerty and RU12, and their battles against the evil Umpire and his side-kick Spocky McSpock. Needless to say, it featured a cast of every TV sci-fi hero or villain from the last fifty years expertly played by the children of Yangtze Class.  

As a result of the Covid bubbles, the play didn’t include the whole of KS2 this year, just the children in Yangtze Class. But they rose to the challenge admirably, taking on individual solos, learning pages of lines and – in more than one case – taking on extra roles so we could cover the cast list. In fact, the children were responsible for putting on all aspects of this play: each dance was expertly choreographed by Annie Rose, Ruby, Ivy, Imogen, Saffron, Ella and Lily who then went on to teach each dance to the rest of the class; the scenery and props were created as part of our art lessons; and even the publicity materials were created by the class.  

We are extremely grateful to Mrs Foster for playing the piano with us once again. She makes such a huge contribution of her time and efforts to help us learn, practise and perfect the songs and we really couldn’t do it without her. Thank you also to our parents for the wonderful costumes and for laughing along with our jokes.  

Well done Yangtze Class,  you were out-of-this-world!

YANGTZE CLASS Monday 20th July – Wednesday 22nd July 2020



Well done mums, dads and carers for your fantastic efforts during the 70 school days of lockdown. You have done a wonderful job in very difficult circumstances. I have really enjoyed following you and your children’s progress over the last few months and receiving your children’s work. The range of fun activities you have shared and your support, dedication, determination and inventiveness has been inspiring and a pleasure to follow. Your children have continued to make progress despite not being in school and seem to have enjoyed themselves too. Well done, and thank you for doing my job for me!


The Star of the Week is Alwyn – once again. You have worked really hard throughout the lock-down, and kept up the effort right to the end of term. I was really pleased with your book review this week for Swallows and Amazons which is one of my favourite books. And you also completed all the other tasks set. You seem to have really enjoyed the history unit this term, but you have produced good quality work in all subjects. Well done.


On Monday it is the Year 6s last day in school. There will be a special assembly in the afternoon with all the usual silly gifts, certificates and other treats. The assembly is for all the children in Year 6 and one parent from each family. We are hoping to meet on the school field and for the other children in school to join us for a socially distant, spread-out leavers’ do. We might even sing, One more step along the world I go…

As I am not able to be there, I would just like to use this opportunity to wish all the Year 6s the best of luck for the future. It has been the most unusual final year in primary school, but they have all coped magnificently with the challenges of lock-down, home-learning and – for many – the return to school. I think that, if they can cope with lockdown, they will be able to cope with anything. It has been a great pleasure to be their teacher and I will miss them. As I have said in their reports, I look forward to hearing how they are doing from time to time.


We have had a wonderful two weeks with the children who will be in Yangtze Class from September; it was great to be able to welcome you back to school and see you having so much fun with your friends. I’m looking forward to being your teacher in September and getting together as a whole class at last.

If you are in Year 5 but weren’t able to come into school over the last two weeks, it would be lovely if you were able to complete the hand-print task (see below) as this will form a display in our new classroom in September.


As you know, it’s the end of term on Wednesday (Whoop! Whoop!), and things are always a little different during the final few days in school. So, I have made some suggestions which you are free to follow.


The children in school really enjoyed making these ‘All about me’ handprints this week. Simply use a pencil to draw around your hand and fill it with patterns. Then, use colouring felt tips to colour in your patterns. Once you have finished, use a black felt tip to go back over the lines to (as Lily said), “Make the colours pop.” Do the same with your border. Lastly, fill the empty white space with as much information about yourself as you can think of. You can include pets, favourite foods, targets for next year, things you want to do as an adult, places you have been or want to visit, friends, family, pet hates, etc. etc. etc. Bring it in on the first day in September and we’ll add it to our display. We used A4 paper.


As we weren’t able to hold a sports day this year, why not run your own? Set up an obstacle course, hold a dressing-up race, run a three-legged race, an egg-and-spoon race, a hopping race, a two-legged jumping race, a wheelbarrow race. You could do some sprints, a long-distance race and you could even try a relay.

How many different sports can you compete in over the course of a day?

I’m sending out a Fitness Bingo game to get you started.


The end of year is always an emotional time, with partings and good-byes, and people heading off in different directions. It’s often difficult to say everything you wanted to say to your friends because of the hustle and bustle of the last day. On top of all this, there are many of your classmates you won’t have seen in a great while, and some whom you might not see again. Why not write an open letter to them all to share your thoughts (an open letter is a letter that anyone can read). You could remind them of a favourite memory, share your thoughts about this strange year, and wish them luck for the future. Send me your letters and we’ll publish them on the school website.


Everyone should know how to cook five favourite meals (at least). These should be the family favourites that everyone enjoys. What would the list be like in your house: spaghetti bolognaise, chicken curry, vegetarian kebabs, pasta splodge? Now would be the perfect time to learn how. Talk to your parents and work out which meal to cook, ensure them that you are responsible enough to be entrusted with the secret family recipe, and get going. Post pictures to me and put them on your blog.


There are millions and billions of crafty websites online, for those who like to make. You can pick up ideas from Pintrest, Youtube and a zillion other places. Why not make something using some of the clothes you’ve grown out of during the lock-down? For example, watch this video for ideas about things you can do with an old pair of jeans


Remember, there’s always the Rube Goldberg competition to take part in. The idea is to make a cracking contraption that can water a plant. In class we talked about watering cans on zip wires, but what ideas do you have?  See last week’s science slides for the competition details.


The local library service are, once again, running the Summer Reading Challenge which I recommend everyone takes part in. This year it is running online – you can find out more here: There are prizes, certificates and great books to read. And frankly, what could be better than sitting in the sun with a good book to read? So, join the Silly Squad and keep your brain active during the long, hot days of summer.


I wish you all a fantastic summer holiday full of rest, fun, activities, family, sunny weather, walks, rides, swims, books, games, play, friends and ice cream. I look forward to seeing some of you in September and I wish the rest of you: “Farewell!”


Why do bananas use suncream?

Because they peel!

What do you get when you mix an elephant and a fish?

Swimming trunks!

Why don’t oysters share their pearls?

Because they’re shellfish!

YANGTZE CLASS Monday 13th July – Friday 17th July 2020



The star of the week is Isla. You have been incredibly busy this week Isla: you baked a German flatbread; solved the mystery of the 52 dead bodies found at Maiden Castle (and found a great photo of Sir Mortimer Wheeler); did some super maths; conducted a fantastic investigation into friction; had another live French lesson with Nanny Cleverley in France (which is a very useful resource to have!); and – on top of all that – you’ve been writing thank you letters for all your birthday presents. Well done Isla – you are our star!



In September, we will be launching an interactive Book Wall where we can post reviews of books we enjoyed, and comment on each other’s choices. To get us started, I would like you to complete a detailed book review. These will be the first to go on the wall. Use the two powerpoints to find out how to write a good book review, and read some good examples on Spaghetti Book Club.


This week there is a mystery to solve on Monday and Tuesday, then a Summer Maths Booklet for the remainder of the term (and the Summer Holidays if you choose!).

This week you’ll be learning about mechanisms that can change the direction of forces, or make a force bigger. I then want you to design a Cracking Contraption. If you like, you can also enter the Rube Goldberg Summer Video Challenge. Read the ppt to find out more.


It’s the end of the unit, so finish your animations and send them in. We’ll find a way to share them all in an online gallery.


It’s the end of the Iron Age and the Romans are thinking about invading Britain. If you were the Emperor Julius Caesar standing on the shores of Kent in AD55, what would you have done?


It’s the Fressingfield Bready Bake Off! It’s time to bake the delicious designs from last week. Remember to take lots of photos and send them into me. You’ll also need to ask your family to review your efforts – they can even dress up as Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood if they like! I hope we don’t have any soggy bottoms!


This week, you’ll be learning how to talk about things you know and things you don’t know how to do. 

Je sais dancer et patiner, mais je ne sais pas jouer du violon.


Why do bananas use suncream?

Because they peel!

What do you get when you mix an elephant and a fish?

Swimming trunks!

Why don’t oysters share their pearls?

Because they’re shellfish!

YANGTZE CLASS Monday 6th July – Friday 10th July 2020 HOMESCHOOLING DAYS 58-62


I think a great many of you would have been extremely hungry if you had to make paper bags for a living. I’m sure it gets faster given practice, but it’s still a fiendishly difficult way to make a living. I was impressed by the children’s answers to the final question in class: How did it make you feel to play this game? They talked about the stress of trying to work quickly, the minimum reward for efforts, how unfair it all seemed, and how lucky they felt not to have to earn their living in this way.

I was very impressed with Eva’s thoughtful, detailed balanced argument that came in last weekend, so I am posting it on the website for you to see. It’s a wonderful piece of writing. Well done Eva.



There is a choice of activity for this week’s literacy. You can either choose to follow the Oak National Academy plans – I have recommended a unit for both Year 5 and Year 6 in the weekly overview, or you can work through your purple workbooks. I will leave it to your parents to decide what a reasonable amount of work is in these.


This week I have planned work using the workbooks. These are different for Year 5 and Year 6, so read the overview for your year before you start. The overview also includes links to videos that can help you. I have also included an extension task for each day if you are either keen, in need of a greater challenge, or both. Friday’s maths is to solve the mystery of the Festival Camping Chaos.

This week you will be investigating friction using a bicycle (or scooter or tricycle) wheel. Please be careful not to hurt your fingers. Your task is to find the best material to make a new set of brakes.   


Over the next two weeks, I would like you to work on your animations using your storyboard to guide you. I hope you have come up with a short story that can be retold using the character you invented a couple of weeks ago. The finished animations should be about a minute long, if you can manage it.


There’s an iron age mystery to solve this week. When archaeologists dug up the hillfort at Maiden Hill in Dorset, they discovered 52 bodies. Your task is to use the evidence to establish what happened to them. I would like a written crime report to be sent to me that describes what the evidence proves.  


This week you will be planning your final loaf. Use the ideas you have researched over the previous few weeks to design a bread for a special occasion. Draw it, label it, write the recipe and gather the resources. Next week will be the Great Fressingfield Bake Off, so you need to be prepared!


En francais, you have two short reading comprehensions to complete, focusing on hobbies.


What do you call a fish without eyes?

A fsh.

Why did the scarecrow win an award?

Because he was outstanding in his field.

Two muffins are baking in an oven. One muffin turns to the other and says, “Phew, is it me or is it getting hot in here?”

The other muffin says, “Aaaaaaghhhh! A talking muffin!”

What did the policeman say to his bellybutton?

You’re under a vest!

Should children be required to attend school through the summer holidays this year?

This is Eva’s fantastic balanced argument that address the issue of whether children should be required to catch up with all the learning lost due to the coronavirus pandemic. She explores the arguments in a balanced, thoughtful and interesting way, elaborating each point and asking questions of her own. Will you agree with her final conclusions? Read to find out.

The Coronavirus Pandemic 2020 Reports

We are certainly living through strange times and the impact on our country’s children has been profound. Read these reports to find out their perspective on events – they make interesting reading. The reports have been written for inclusion in a time-capsule that we will be burying in the school grounds. It can be opened by children in the future so they can find out what it was like to live through the lock-down. It is incredible how well-informed our children are: they seem to have a very good understanding of the science, the need for social distancing and good hygiene and an accurate grasp of the vocabulary of the lock-down (furloughing, easing the lock-down, pandemic). It’s interesting to read about how these events have impacted them personally. Some are struggling with boredom brought on by isolation; others seem to be thriving, even if they do miss their friends. I’m sure you’ll be impressed with their work.

Mr L

Yangtze Class Overview 15th – 19th June

Thank you for sending me your non-chronological reports about the coronavirus; I was really impressed with them. I think the children (and their teachers) who read this in the future will be really interested in your experiences and thoughts). If you haven’t yet done so, please complete yours and send it to me as soon as possible so I can include it in the time-capsule.

Thank you again to all of you who are emailing me every day or so. Remember a weekly update is a minimum requirement.  All the best to each of you and keep safe.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email me on

YANGTZE CLASS Monday 8th – Friday 12th June 2020



Our Star of the Week in school is Monique. She has been cheerful, hard-working and determined. She has particularly enjoyed the maths this week, and has contributed really well to every other lesson too. It has been great fun having you back in the class, Monique. Well done and keep it up.

Our Star of the Week at home is Finley. I am really impressed with all the work Finley has produced throughout the lock-down: he is working his socks off and I always look forward to hearing about what he has been up to. This week he wrote a fantastic set of instructions for catching a dragon that was detailed, entertaining and full of good humour and an incredibly long ‘History of Bread’ timeline. Well done Finley!


I was surprised that very few of the children who are now back in school knew about my weekly newsletter. Please let them read through these messages for themselves – they’re a nice way for them to keep in touch with what their friends are up to. Thank you.


Wow! I have been inundated with examples of incredible work from you this week. Well done for getting back into the swing of things so well. There has been far too much to share it all, but here are a few examples.

Many of you made a model of the solar system. Here are Matilda and Rose’s.

Eva produced a seriously impressive set of Top Trump cards full of amazing facts:

And George’s fact files were really well presented too:

You’ve also worked hard on your History of Bread timelines too. I was particularly impressed with Eliza’s which was very well presented using Word, and full of great facts too – including the start of the Great Fire of London!

Finally, more great work to share from Percy: fantastic poster, a great Solar-System-In-Your-Pocket and a stone age necklace made using a real dear antler he found.

Remember, you can always post work you want to share on your blogs. You have sent me some fantastic instructions for catching dragons and diary entries this week; if you post them to your blogs, your friends will be able to read them too! Make sure you also send me copies of work you want me to mark.


The Year 6 Hoodies have been ordered! Hopefully they won’t take too long to arrive – I’ll let you know when they get here. Thank you for bringing in your sponsorship money and contributions. If you haven’t already done so, please drop off your money in school as soon as you can. Remember – it has been a group effort, so any contribution is welcome. Thank you to the friends for helping us out too!



We are living through strange times and I think children in the future will be interested to read about what it was like to live through the Coronavirus Pandemic of 2020. We have decided to bury a time capsule in the school grounds to be dug up by children in the future. We will fill it with things related to the pandemic, the lock-down, home-schooling, etc. This week, we will also write non-chronological reports about this strange time to include in the time capsule. Please send me your completed work by email (in Word if possible) and I will print it out and bury it!


We are adding and subtracting with decimals again this week, then there are a few more dastardly, head-scratchingly tricky maths problems to solve on Friday.

Our new topic is Forces and – in this first lesson – you will be revising different types of forces you have learnt about in previous years and reminding yourselves which forces are pushes and which are pulls.  


I enjoyed your animations and am pleased to see you saving more and more things to your blogs. This week you’ll be making your own flip books, before learning how to create similar things digitally. You’ll need to download pivotanimator for the second part of the lesson.


Time is moving forward, and we are moving on. This week is the start of the Bronze Age. Find out about this versatile metal and learn how to make it.


We’re investigating, exploring and analysing breads of the world this week. I hope you’re feeling hungry!


En francais, you will be learning the words for ordinal numbers (first, second, third, etc), then reading slightly more complex directions using these words.