Welcome to Maple Class
Summer Term - Earth Matters
Is our Earth in danger? Curriculum Overview
Term 3 Spelling
Spring Term - Ancient Egypt
Who built the pyramids? Curriculum Overview
Electricity WOW Day with Professor
Current activity in Maple – it’s shocking!
On Thursday, Professor Ed visited Maple to help recap on this term’s work on electricity. The class started by discussing what electricity is and took part in demonstrations of how circuits work as well as moving a drink can around with the static electricity ‘magic wand’ (everyone wondered why Prof turned up in such an old baggy jumper until he explained it was made of the perfect material for charging the magic wand with static electricity!)
The children thought about how potential difference drives electrons in circuits, and worked in teams to come up with an experiment using water siphoning to show that the greater the pressure (potential difference), the greater the water flow (electric current). Just before the equipment was packed away, Prof wiped a plastic comb across his magic jumper and showed that a stream of water from the siphon can be bent by static electricity, proving water molecules also have a charge. As many of you will know, Prof has a tendency to slip a few pranks into his visits (usually aimed at me), so I wasn’t surprised to end up getting wet when he was demonstrating how a battery works using a rather large syringe of water! Hmmm.
Next, the children learned how a Van der Graaf generator works and watched some amazing demonstrations. In addition to creating some mini-lightning bolts, they saw St Elmo’s fire being made and were amazed to see a metal star being made to spin, powered only by electrons. The bit everyone loved was the ‘confetti bomb’ where lots of confetti was put on top of the generator so that when it was switched on, all the pieces of paper repelled each other and flew across the classroom (I definitely needed her dustpan and brush afterwards, for that one!)
The best part of Prof Ed’s visits, are the usual ‘ooohs’ and ‘aahhhs’ moments when science really does come to life!
End of Topic Museum
Maple started off an action-packed day with a wonderful performance, in the morning, of the Stations of the Cross for the Easter Service. But later in the day, came their pièce de resistance; their end of topic museum around everything they’ve learned this term on Ancient Egypt, performed in front of parents and the whole school.
After two years of no museums (due to Covid), it was great opportunity for the children to conceive and design their displays and demonstrate all their learning in such a fun and interactive manner… and all the work, preparation and effort they have been putting in over the preceding weeks was obvious for everyone to see! Ancient Egypt is always an exciting topic and the class created so many wow moments for their audiences. What was especially pleasing is how they managed to weave-in so much information learned from an artefact workshop they attended at Bristol Museum and an Egyptian Wow day that was generously funded by the PTA.
The parish hall was filled with evidence of the children’s work in the form of a photo display, digital brochures and newspaper reports, topic books, 3D Egyptian farms, golden sarcophagi and their amazing Ancient Egypt homework projects. In addition to presenting their work, the class wanted to create a fun and educational experience for the ‘littlies’ so they designed a series of their own entertainment stations. These included: Who could build the highest pyramid, who could wrap a mummy the fastest, who could guess the amount of bricks in the Lego pyramid, write your name in hieroglyphics, several quizzes, and ‘match the gods’. It was an utter delight to watch Oak and Cherry/Birch children engaging so excitedly in all the games created especially for them. There was a real buzzing atmosphere and Maple designed an incredibly rich and diverse series of different ways to showcase their knowledge.
At the start of the ‘Egyptian’ Museum, Maple performed two poems and three songs. The first song was from Horrible Histories, the second was the Mummy song which involved lots of actions, and the final (my absolute favourite), was a jazzy number called Treasures of King Tut. The Year 5s, dressed in dark glasses and black ties, stole the show with their funky moves! Everybody loved it.
From the huge applause and crowd cheering after the opening performances, until the very end of the day, the room was filled with laughter, fun and, quite frankly, well-deserved congratulations from parents, fellow teachers, and the rest of the school, who were in awe of just how accomplished and impressive the children of Maple were. We are all incredibly proud!
Trip to Bristol Museum
On Thursday, Maple class visited the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery to look at the Egyptian display and attend an artefact workshop. Everyone was fascinated by the ancient mummies, including mummified cats and crocodiles. The children’s detective skills were called into action to work out the age of some of the relics, and they interacted with the ICT to ‘see through’ a sarcophagus. Theo Baylis was particularly interested in the replica Rosetta Stone and how it was the breakthrough in decoding hieroglyphics. Ewan was amazed that a 1500-year-old tunic had survived, Louis commented how beautiful the stone carvings were, and Ethan was absolutely astonished at the coincidence of seeing exactly the same intricate scarab beetle that he had previously drawn in class. Throughout their tour of the museum, the children were constantly asking probing questions that really impressed Jane and I; it was wonderful to see their enthusiasm and interest growing at every new artefact and piece of information they discovered.
After a tour of the whole museum, Maple participated in an Egyptian workshop led by the museum staff. They learnt about Amelia Edwards, a famous Bristolian woman, born in the Victorian era. Amelia used her inheritance to travel the world, landing up in Egypt in 1832, where she wrote many famous books about the ancient world of Egyptology. Using extracts from Amelia’s Diary, the children had to try to figure out what particular items were used for, decide whether they were real or replicas, and match the artefacts to whereabouts they were discovered. Everyone enjoyed being a super-sleuth and there were lots of discussions as the children worked out their answers. It was funny watching the children test an Egyptian pillow (definitely not the most comfortable variety) and determine how Egyptian’s used an unfamiliar type of a ‘spirit-level’ to construct buildings. Sarah Frears, from the museum, commented that Burrington children were very knowledgeable and it was clear that they were enthused and had thoroughly enjoyed this topic. I was most proud of them!
Egyptian WOW DAY
What did Maple get up to in Ancient Egypt? – Mummy’s the word!
On Thursday morning, a very special Egyptologist visitor called Professor Robert Jones (yes, a pretend relation to Indiana), visited Maple class to tell them of his amazing travels to Ancient Egypt.
All the children climbed into Professor Jones’ time-machine and travelled back in time to the land of pyramids and pharaohs. He illustrated how the Egyptians started off as hunter-gatherers (poor James, Stan and Freddie had to be goats), but quickly settled along the banks of the Nile as farmers due to annual inundation (flood) which fertilised the land with nutrient-rich soil. These farmers exploited the Nile, using it for trade and growing into a powerful civilisation.
Professor Jones explained the hierarchy of Egyptian society by dressing-up the children. Stan loved being clad as a Pharoah – ‘I looked so cool.’ He wasn't wrong about that! Ewan, meanwhile, enjoyed his role of looking after the temples and gods. Theo was desperate to be the Army Commander (I wonder why that is…hehehe!) and poor Louis and Adam were sold off as slaves. They were not happy, and Louis even tried to escape. Once caught, he was sold to the Pharoah for 2 goats and a camel… a bargain!
The highlight of Professor Jones’ visit was definitely the Mummification Story. Poor TutanBella and AmunAdam mysteriously, and very suddenly, passed away and were chosen to be mummified. Adam commented, ‘I loved being wrapped up as a mummy – it was so comfy. The best part was the competition between Bella and I to see who could be mummified quicker.’ Jasper and Louis (prompted from slave to priest) embraced being embalmers trying their best to beat Robyn and Cecily’s team.
Finlay, who was dressed as Anubis, took his role very seriously, ‘I loved ripping out AmunAdam’s lungs, stomach and liver with the special knife.’ While Daniel said, ‘I liked being a professional mourner: crying, tearing my hair out and chanting prayers around the mummies.’ It was all very spiritual.
After the embalmers were finished, Jasper, dressed as the green-faced god, Osiris had to determine whether the mummies were destined for the Afterlife by weighing their hearts against a feather – poor AmunAdam – apparently his ‘heavy heart’ meant he had been a very, very bad boy and could not travel to the next world. Daniel, dressed as the ‘man-eating’ god, Ammit (the half crocodile, with a lion neck and hippo bottom) devoured AmunAdam’s heart and body. It was most gruesome.
It was great way to learn about Ancient Egyptian history. Theo summed up the morning best, ‘I enjoyed it all, not only was it funny but also very interesting.’
After break, Maple became archaeologists and carried out their own Ancient Egyptian artefact investigation, observing and inspecting Professor Jones' relics and treasures. My favourite was the marbled Bastet - a cat-faced Goddess.
After lunch, the children created their very own mummies using foil and tissue paper, and then started to build their mummy a 'bespoke' sarcophagus. This proved really tricky, but it was lovely to observe every child's determination to succeed. Pictures will be posted once they are decorated.
As Ethan said, ‘It’s been a great day, so much better than Maths and English!’
Spelling Term 2A & B
- Spelling T2a LA
- Spelling T2b LA
- Spelling T2cycle A Overview Y5 and 6 Maple Class 2021 2022
- Spelling T2cycle B Overview Y5 and 6 Maple Class 2021 2022
- Spelling T3a LA
- Spelling T3cycle A Overview Y5 and 6 Maple Class 2021 2022
Ancient Egypt Topic Homework
Autumn Term - Extreme Earth
Extreme Earth Curriculum Overview
Maple Class become the Masters of Disasters
Professor Ed visited Burrington on Thursday and Friday to bring the science behind natural disasters to Maple Class. The children learned how the movement of tectonic plates not only cause th formation of natural features such as mountains and rift valleys, but also how the huge amounts of energy are released as earthquakes and tsunamis, and lead to the formation of volcanoes. Daniel was intrigued at how tectonic plates rub together to cause earthquakes, and Bella enjoyed learning about the network of detectors located on sea beds and how these send messages via satellites to warn of impending tsunamis. Robyn said, “It was good to learn the different scientific words about how tectonic plates move, like ‘convergent’, ‘divergent’ and ‘subduction’.
Cecily, Robyn, Bella and Mila, holding hula-hoops, became tectonic plates and crashed into each other, while the rest of the class observed. Everyone then experimented with their own tectonic plates sliding on a bed of magma (broken biscuits on raspberry frosting) to create their own valleys, volcanic ridges and mountains.
The class split into groups to build a seismograph and test it on an earthquake table, while learning how different structures survive or are destroyed, depending on their strength, the earthquake magnitude, and distance from the epicentre. Based on what they had learned, the children then designed their own structures to withstand earthquakes, using Midget Gem sweets and cocktail sticks, and put them to the test against each other on the earthquake table; The Great British Shake Off! There were some wonderfully creative designs, and some outstanding examples of great engineering. This definitely was a highlight.
The children learned how heat from tropical seas, and moist air, drive the formation of hurricanes and they concluded that warmer seas in the future due to climate change, will probably lead to more frequent and more severe hurricanes, and what this might mean for people living in hurricane zones. Theo was especially interested in how the heat from the sun can heat air that rises and pulls in more air below it to create winds. Professor Ed produced an ‘Air-zooka’ to show how wind could destroy structures and everyone laughed as he shot Mrs A to make her hair blow around and they watched her hide behind the whiteboard. Everyone had a turn with the Air-zooka to destroy buildings made of plastic cups, and there was a competition just before break where everyone tried to shoot a paper cup off of a shelf. Congratulations to Robyn and Cecily for winning a prize!
The session on volcanoes started with red lava spewing from a mini-volcano in the classroom. The children had a great knowledge of how different types of lava behave, from fast-flowing rivers of molten rock, to very slow-moving but highly destructive forms. They handled different types of volcanic rocks so they could see and feel the differences, but were amazed when they found out that some of these rocks actually float on water. They were so interested, that there was a short unplanned discussion around mass, volume and density of different objects and there was a ‘will it float or sink?’ competition using different fruits, vegetables… and volcanic rocks. Ewan, Finlay and Adam enjoyed learning about density and how it effects whether objects float, and Jasper said he especially loved understanding how different densities of rocks affected the types of lava produced.
James summed up the two days: ‘That was such fun, I learnt so many things. When is Professor back?