British School in the heart of Madrid

YEAR 4

ENGLISH

Literacy is the key to all other subjects so considerable attention is paid to this area.

Speaking and Listening:

Children in Year 4 are expected to listen for increasingly longer periods of time both to the teacher and to their peers as they read or discuss stories or share information facts in class activities.
They will also be encouraged to speak and listen to each other in English during pair work and in group activities.
Drama plays an important part in developing oral skills. Incentives such as the awarding of house points encourage the weaker or less confident pupils to participate.
Reading:

Reading is an integral part of the daily timetable, either as shared reading or as individual reading from books, not only the specific English textbooks but also Science, History and Geography books.

Writing:

During the year the children are given the opportunity to write in different styles; story writing, poetry, descriptive writing, letter writing and even a newspaper article. This helps to develop their ability to express ideas and thoughts in a logical sequence in more complex and detailed sentences and with closer attention to punctuation rules. Knowledge of the English language is further developed and extended in all the topic based subjects studied throughout the year.

MATHEMATICS

In Numeracy many resources, including varied apparatus, the interactive white board, traditional games and exercises are used to enhance learning and reinforce Numeracy objectives.
The start of each lesson begins with a short Mental Maths activity to develop children’s mental strategies, to gain familiarity with numerical language and to reinforce learning of times tables and division facts.
Number work in class involves consolidating and developing the children’s understanding of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division and identifying which operation to use in written problems. More abstract concepts such as negative numbers are introduced but care is taken to do this alongside the practical Science work with thermometers. Fractions are developed further and decimals introduced.
In Shape, Data and Measure work the emphasis is on consolidating and learning about 2D and 3Dshapes, length, weight capacity and both analogical and digital time telling. Starting from their knowledge of compass points the children move on to the measurement of angles.

SCIENCE

Topics covered in Year 4 are closely related to the children’s personal experience.

Forces (1st term)
In this topic children learn about forces and machines. Starting with the force of gravity, they then study friction forces, including air and water resistance, before investigating how simple machines work. Living things and their habitats: This topic teaches the children to recognise that living things can be grouped in a variety of ways.
They explore and use keys to identify and name a variety of living things. Finally, they look at how changes to habitats can pose dangers to living things.

Circuits and conductors (2nd term)
The children extend previous practical experience of making circuits when they are challenged with the project of making their own working model of a lighthouse. Along the way they are introduced to the concepts of insulators and conductors and realise that there are different kinds of circuits. Do you know your series from your parallel circuit?
Pupils also learn about the history of electricity (great inventors such as Edison, Faraday and Franklin) and how electricity arrives to our homes! Solids and liquids Practical work is used to list the properties of solids, liquids and gases and all enjoy the melting and cooling experiments which demonstrate how a material can exist as both.
Different methods are used to separate solids and dissolving is investigated by mixing a variety of solids with water and creating solutions when applicable. Through filtering and evaporating children make salt crystals. Each experiment helps to reinforce the theories of reversible and irreversible change whilst demonstrating the notions of ‘particles’.

Teeth and eating (3rd term)
This half term children learn about digestion and different types of teeth, before moving on to explore deadly predators and their prey, in their exploration of food chains. They work scientifically throughout the topic, using enquiry, practical experiments and hands-on research to answer questions and investigate how we eat, why we eat and what we eat.

Brilliant bubbles (3rd term)
We all enjoying blowing bubbles, but are they always spherical? Can we make square bubbles? What about different coloured bubbles or very tiny ones or ones that last for ages? This topic also looks at places we see bubbles other than when blowing them through soap mixtures, such as in food stuffs to produce lighter (less dense) products.

HISTORY

Ancient Egypt (1st term)
The children discover what life was like for Ancient Egyptians through a variety of activities using both primary and secondary sources. Areas covered include the importance of the River Nile to Egyptian civilization, farming methods, Egyptian Gods, Hieroglyphics, Mummification, discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb and the building of the pyramids.

The Vikings (2nd term)
Different aspects of Viking life are considered after learning about the struggle for power between Anglo-Saxons and The Vikings. In this unit, children are introduced to the idea that people from other societies have been invading and settling in other countries for a long time.
Children find out how the Viking influence spread through different parts of the world and how, over a period of years, the Vikings eventually settled in Britain.
Children will develop their understanding of chronology, describe and identify reasons for and results of historical events, situations and changes and consider different ways the past has been interpreted.

The Tudors (3rd term)
In this topic children find out about the Tudors though the story of Henry VIII (including his marriages and wives). They learn about the lives of different types of people from the Tudor times including a study of the differences between rich and poor

GEOGRAPHY

Africa (1st term)
The diversity and exotic appeal of the African continent never fails to capture children’s interest. Both physical and human geography features are covered; including a study of Africa’s topography and some of the social and economic challenges facing specific countries.

Village settlers (2nd term)
Map skills are developed by drawing an original settlement and children learn about the different factors which determine where people settle. Comparisons are made between village and city life.
This unit combines work on the Vikings in Britain with geographical work on the development of settlements. It introduces children to how settlements develop over time and how early settlers provided many of the settlements we use today. It will be used as a geographical study within the history unit and later to revisit work previously completed in history.
Children will work in small groups when using maps and individually when designing their own village, thus furthering their mapping skills.

Improving the environment (3rd term)
Children are given an insight into the environmental challenges facing the planet Earth including Global Warming and its consequences. They are also made aware of how they can help to care for the planet by being responsible on a local level.

ICT

We understand the crucial value of technology in our day-to-day lives and therefore make ICT as relevant as possible to our day-to-day lives whilst making it link cross-curricularly with our topic work.
In Year 4 the children hone their word processing skills (in particular the stylist choices) whilst learning to use Excel to present graphs, we showcase information learnt by creating PowerPoint presentations with slide transitions and custom animation.
We create patterns and pictures using Microsoft Paint and furthermore we start to look into the very basics of computer programming with Probot- where the children are able to make a robot move using basic distance, direction and angled commands before moving on to using LOGO

P.E.

Pupils will be taught six areas of activity: Invasion Games, Net Games, Athletic Activities, Gymnastic Activities, Striking and Fielding Games and Swimming on a six to eight week block basis.
Assessment: Pupils are assessed in diagnostic, continual and summative stages against National Standards. Also pupil self assessment is common practice in many of the activities.

LENGUA CASTELLANA Y LITERATURA

Tratamos este curso de conseguir como objetivos que el alumno sea capaz de expresarse oralmente y por escrito de forma coherente y que utilice la lengua como instrumento de aprendizaje y planificación de las actividades mediante procedimientos que así lo faciliten.
Es objetivo fundamental la utilización de la lectura como fuente de placer, de información y de aprendizaje, así como medio de funcionamiento y enriquecimiento lingüístico y personal. Para ello, la biblioteca de aula adquiere una gran importancia.
Los niños disponen de gran variedad de libros, pudiendo elegir ellos mismos el que deseen leer, siendo también válidos aquellos que tengan en casa o alquilen de otras bibliotecas.
Para lograr nuestros objetivos trabajamos distintos aspectos de la lengua, siempre organizados en unidades quincenales:
  - Se trabaja la comprensión lectora también a través de textos narrativos rigurosamente seleccionados y leídos en común, a partir de los cuales realizamos actividades para aumentar su vocabulario y desarrollar su compresión.
  - En cuanto a la gramática, una vez realizada una exposición clara y razonada a partir de ejemplos de los correspondientes conceptos, como sustantivos y sus clases, género de los mismos, adjetivo y género, el verbo en los distintos tiempos, realizamos una serie de actividades de reconocimiento, análisis y aplicación de los mismos.
  - Respecto a la ortografía se formulan cuestiones ortográficas relacionadas con la representación de los sonidos y las reglas de ortografía más comunes para realizar después actividades de aplicación de la regla estudiada.
  - La composición de textos y relatos sencillos relacionados con el ámbito académico o con situaciones cotidianas de relación social, así como textos de información y opinión. Se realiza desde el análisis de sus principales elementos y siguiendo las fases del proceso de escritura.

CIENCIAS SOCIALES

Los objetivos que nos planteamos en Ciencias Sociales este curso son, fundamentalmente, identificar los principales elementos del entorno natural, analizando sus características más relevantes y localizándolos en mapas (tanto en formato papel como virtualmente); despertar curiosidad por el conocimiento de distintos ámbitos, lo que facilita su aprendizaje, y el interés creciente por conocer hechos y acontecimientos de épocas pasadas. A lo largo de este curso descubrirán:

GEOGRAFÍA
  - Los océanos y continentes de nuestro planeta.
  - El territorio de España.
  - Principales elementos del relieve y de los ríos.
  - Localización del relieve y de los ríos de España.

HISTORIA
  - Cómo estudiar el pasado.
  - Distintas etapas de la historia.
  - Introducción a la Prehistoria.
  - Introducción a la Edad Antigua.
  - Introducción a la Edad Media.
  - Introducción a la Edad Moderna.
  - Introducción a la Edad Contemporánea hasta la actualidad.
Gallery images YEAR 4