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Slugs & Snails - Gastropoda



As part of our new geography topic, 'Wish You Were Here' we have discussed the word 'holiday'. We have asked the questions:

Why do we have holidays?

Where do we go on holidays?

Where did they originate from?

We also discussed the different tourist destinations we have visited or heard about from around the world.


We asked the question:

Why do some people travel abroad for a holiday?

We started our topic by 'mind-mapping' our ideas and experiences.


Pupils in year 6 have been writing algorithms. The task was to write an algorithm for making a jam sandwich. We came up with some interesting results! We will use this knowledge to help us write a detailed algorithm for brushing your teeth, before moving onto an algorithm for a fairground ride. We wrote the instructions and then Mr Ford and Heather had to try them out.





A number of year 6 pupils took part in a 'Bushcraft' day. Have a look at what we got up to and learned below! 


Activities during our 'Bushcraft

Sports Day 2016


Sports Day was a great day, enjoyed by all of year 6. We supported, demonstrated and worked alongside other pupils in the Federation to carry out a range of activities. We had the opportunity to show the skills we have learnt throughout the year.


We all competed in different races at the end of the day from obstacle races, relay races to elite sprint races. The highlight for year 6 was showing our teamwork skills. We had to cross a 30m area using a range of items without touching the ground. It was exciting! We had to use the teamwork skills we have developed throughout the year. We even managed to carry out he task without talking. Mr Ford and Mrs Brown were really impressed.


Have a look at the photos of us working together below:

Teamwork during Sportsday 2016

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Year 6 Science - Habitat Surveys


Other the past 3 weeks, we have been investigating the different habitats found within the school grounds. We carried out 4 investigation linked to our school grounds and the habitats found within.


The first survey we carried out looked at the range of mini-beasts found across three different habitats. We looked at the woodland area, the meadow and the grassland. We used a quadrat to help us identify a smaller area to sample. We then used our mathematical skills to help us create pie charts to display our results.


The following week, we investigated trees. We used classification keys to help identify the different trees found in and around the woodland. We then used our knowledge of measures to help measure the circumference of the trees. We had to measure 1.5m from the ground. We then measured the circumference using tap measures. It was really difficult and we had to show team work because a number of trees were so wide. After measuring the trees, we took the circumference and divided it by 2.5 to calculate the age of the tree. It was really interesting to find out how long the trees had been residing at the school. We started to draw conclusions about the position of the trees and the age.


The third survey we conducted focused on the birds that live in the habitats surrounding the school. We used our bird identification guide to help identify the different species. We had to sit still in order to spot the birds. We even identified a buzzard circling high in the sky. We recorded our results in a tally chart and discussed them when we returned to class. We drew a number of conclusions and discussed adaption and the reason why birds have different bills and feet.


Following on from the bird survey, we carried out a vegetation analysis. We used the quadrats and recorded down all the vegetation species found in the woodland, on the sports field, in the meadow and in the shade. We used our knowledge of percentages to estimate the percentage covering of each species within our quadrats. It was clear to see the impact the sun had on the abundance of different species.

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Year 6 Expert Visits to the Palmerston Forts


Year 6 split into 3 expert groups and visited three of the Palmerston Forts which were built due to the threat of French Invasion.


The three expert groups visited Fort Nelson, Fort Purbrook and Fort Widley. During these visits, pupils practised their note-taking skills as well as their sketching skills. On arrival at Fort Nelson, the pupils experienced the firing of the cannons.

The expert group that visited Fort Purbrook were given a guided tour of the fortification. The pupils asked a range of interesting questions and record down their answers so that they could share the information with pupils back at school.

One of the expert groups had the opportunity to visit the tunnels which are rarely open to the public.

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  • Year 6 Visit to Winchester Science Centre




  • On Friday 29th January, Year 6 visited Winchester Science Centre. During the visit, the children became scientists for the day and got hands on with over 100 practical science activities as well as took part in a workshop. As scientists the children experimented with a range of circuits and created their own electromagnet. The children investigated with motors and magnets and used these to carry out a range of practical activities.


The workshop included the following activities:

Magnets, Motors & Electricity: Upper KS2

See how simple and elegant electromagnetic forces can be. Make an electromagnet, construct a simple motor and see how motors work. 


  • The children worked really well in teams and worked enthusiastically throughout the day. The children were given a number of activities they needed to carry out linked to sport and forces. The children recorded down their findings and discussed when they returned to class.


We captured some of our thoughts about the workshop and practical activities:

"Creating an electromagnet was so exciting. It was hard wrapping the wire around the nail but we were amazed at how powerful the electromagnet was. We picked up a number of paperclips." (Molly)

"It was amazing to think you could make the paper move like a mini-helicopter using just a battery, screw, earth magnet and a piece of copper wire." (Jake)

  • "We made the copper wire spin around by placing the battery on top of the earth magnet and by creating a coil around the battery. The copper wire had to be in contact with the battery and magnet. To make it spin in the other direction, you had to swap the battery over."


Have a look at Year 6 scientists in action below:

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Christmas dinner

Possibly one of the largest Christmas dinners held today in Waterlooville. Springwood children were served their Christmas dinner by staff, pulled a cracker and sang along to a variety of Christmas songs handpicked by Mr Lathem. 

Tim Peake’s mission to space

Springwood had the opportunity to watch the live launch of Tim Peake’s mission to visit the international space station. We discovered the functional parts of the spacecraft, how long it would take and some of the preparation that has taken place. We took inspiration from this amazing achievement from someone who is local to our school and who has made history as the first British astronaut to reach the international space station. 

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Calshot 2015 - Day 1


The children had an exciting start to the week. After settling in, the children hit the slopes for some skiing and tested their climbing skills on the indoor climbing walls. Group 3 braved the wind on the outdoor Initiative course, where they demonstrated excellent teamwork. After dinner, the children took part in Rushing Rockets where they had to apply their scientific skills to fire rockets at various angles towards different targets.


See Year 6 ‘Bees and Wasps’ Page for photographs

Welcome to Slugs & Snails - Gastropoda

Autumn 2015

Week Ending 25/9/15:

What a busy week! Three Y6 expert groups spent a day each at Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard and we all went to Crookhorn Secondary School to discover more about 'The Science Behind the Science'.


Parent Consultation Meetings - 7th October, 2015

If you've not already done so, please sign up outside class. Appointments are available from 8.00am to 7.00pm. 


Friday's New Maths Workshop

Thanks also to all parents who joined us for our second Maths Workshop on Friday morning. This week, we looked at puzzles to help us with our mental strategies and working with decimals. (Join us next week if you can, from 8.30am - 9.15am)


Portsmouth Historic Dockyard Visits

As part of our 'Ships and Coasts' topic, Y6 visited the Dockyard this week in three small expert groups. In groups averaging 14 children, this gave us the opportunity to study key aspects of our naval history in greater depth. We all experienced life on board HMS Warrior and explored life in the Modern Royal Navy. In addition, expert groups also focused on other specific areas of interest; Monday's group went aboard HMS Victory, building on learning in Y5, Thursday's group explored life aboard the WW1 monitor vessel, HMS M.33 and began to appreciate how how ship design and purpose was changing, whilst Friday's group took the Harbour Tour. Luckily, the sun was with us and we saw a range of vessels in Portsmouth Harbour, along with adaptations that are being made to strengthen the quay to accommodate the new aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth. We learned that this new ship will be around three times the length of the carrier HMS Illustrious that we saw docked; at a staggering 284m long, it will be almost the length of three football pitches!


Here are a few reminders of our visits:

Bob, one of the Warrior Visitor Guides, explained how the 68lb guns (cannons) were fired and Y6 became his gun crew!

He was so impressed with our questions and enthusiasm that he took us to an area not usually open to the public, HMS Warrior's operating theatre, where we learned about Victorian surgery at sea.


Did you speak to this man on your visit? What was his famous connection to HMS Warrior when he was just sixteen years old?

Here's a clue...




The Science Behind the Science

All of Y6 spent a session with Crookhorn's science team this week. Afterwards, Tia commented, " I love science and the show made me feel like I was a scientist doing all the wonderful experiments." 

Chloe added, "I loved it when Mr Russell amazingly lit the bottle with the chemical gases and made an awesome explosion. It was dangerous but I felt really safe." 

Emma agreed, " There were lots of bangs and mixing chemicals and I loved the fireworks at the end. I wish I could watch it again and I loved the thunder and the balloons. I never knew hydrogen was so flammable!"


Week ending 21/9/15

Y6 had our first Maths Workshop this morning. Many thanks to all parents who joined their children to support their maths learning.


One mum said, "I would like to comment on the first maths morning session in Mrs Jones' Y6 class. The session was very entertaining with all the children really enjoying themselves and the parents being able to join in as well with their children. Mrs Jones was very helpful and interacted with everybody. I found it very relaxing and enjoyed every moment of it and will continue to come to every maths session with my child."


So, please join us next time if you can. The aim is to give you an insight into what your child is currently learning in school along with practical (and fun!) ways you can share, support and extend learning at home. Y6 maths workshops take place every Friday morning, 8.30am - 9.15am.


Week ending 4/9/15

Welcome to Gastropoda (Slugs & Snails!). In our first week back, we've been following up on some of the many questions we generated on Transition Day, back in July. Abbie's question was, "How fast do snails travel?" As scientists, we devised an experiment to investigate this. Our big question was, "How fast is a snail's pace?" We agreed which variables we should keep the same, and which one we would change. Then the fun began!


We observed that snails seemed to have a well-developed sense of smell and we wondered whether we could use this to guide them round a maze...


We promise no snails were harmed in the course of our investigations and we all washed our hands very thoroughly afterwards! 


Ask us about snail anatomy too - Y6 are becoming snail experts!



Teamwork and creativity were essential ingredients in our snail inspired eco-art. With just a simple image as a starting point, we scavenged in the vicinity of our classroom, collecting discarded leaves and twigs that we could use to interpret our mollusc.












Work begins... our first session of physical theatre, warming up and building teamwork within the cast. Auditions take place in a few days time with parts for all. (Set designers, lighting engineers and sound technicians may also apply!)




More teamwork as Y6 put their maths skills to the test!

Thank you to the volunteers who also helped set up the trails at lunchtime.



After a few last minute adjustments, and everyone pulling together to make sure we were all ready on time (it was close!), the excitement mounted as we prepared to showcase our rides.

It was fabulous to see the ingenuity, creativity and progression from Year R to Year 6. The hall was full of excited project designers, all eager to explain and demonstrate their models.

A huge congratulations to all of our design engineers - this was a truly inspiring event!


Well done to our Y6 experts who later took their control mechanisms to Y2 and Y5 to show their younger colleagues how this technology could be connected to and then used to control their rides.



Back at school, we concentrated on applying our research and new programming skills to designing our own fairground rides. This was a whole school project and Y6's models had to have the 'wow' factor... We had to show off our new control skills!


In small groups, we created prototypes and tried to anticipate design challenges and how we might overcome them. Then it was on to the builds!

We needed a stable frame on which to mount our motors - precision and accuracy were crucial! We used a range of tools and DT skills to build this important foundation for our rotating mechanisms. 

Teams divided up the tasks and took turns in all parts of the project, from model making...

... to writing, testing and debugging some complex algorithms to control their rides.



As part of our background research into fairground rides and how they work, we spent the day at Paulton's Park. Taking a closer look at ride mechanisms, we gathered lots of ideas for our own. design projects. Experiencing the rides first-hand was all in our day's work!


In the workshop, we quickly learned how to program a fairground model using computer software. For the first time, we wrote algorithms (a detailed set of instructions) to control outputs such as motor speed and direction, lights and sound.



Just a few party pics (sorry you missed it Aaliyah - hope you're having a great time in Australia, but come back to us soon!)


Setting up


A Few Festive Hats (& T-Shirt) !


A Few New Party Games...

#1 - Greetings Your Majesty!!


#2 - Pass the Bauble!


#3 - Snowman Scramble!


Party Food!!

A big 'thank you' to everyone for all of your contributions to our festive feast!



Towards the end of this term, Y5/6 learned about Fairtrade - what it is, who it affects and, as global citizens, why it's so important. It was completely their own idea to have a stall at this year's fayre to raise money for this organisation. Everyone put in a huge effort in a very short space of time, creating gift tags, baking Fairtrade shortbread, making chocolate pretzels and creating our Rudolph raffle. 


A huge 'well done' everyone and a special thanks to Mrs Gray for her culinary support and inspiration! Our £25 contribution to Fairtrade will be sent off in January.




Y5 & 6 had an 'out of this world' experience when the Explorer Dome visited recently. Our thanks to Ben and Caz for sharing their expertise and bringing our science topics of Light and Space to life. They were staggered by how much we knew too and were amazed by our many questions!

How did we make those coloured shadows?


Thanks to all of Y5's special guests who came to our 'Star Party' in the evening. Can you believe a staggering 90 people attended? Luckily, Y5 had baked plenty of intergalactic cake and cosmic cookies. Our colour changing cocktails were a great hit too!

Despite a cloudy sky, we did manage to briefly glimpse the Summer Triangle and the Moon. We hope our families enjoyed their Dome experience too as well as sharing this term's science learning.








A very big 'thank you' to Liz's grandad, who came in to class recently to share his ship building expertise.


We were all fascinated by his stories and subject knowledge and were able to recognise many similarities with other ships we've been studying this term. 


Mr Stopani was impressed with our questions and we wished he could have stayed longer!


Thanks again Mr Stopani!




The Open Box Theatre Company worked with Year 5 recently as part of our 'Ships & Coasts' project. Through drama and role play, we went back in time to 1805 to experience life on board Nelson's flagship, HMS Victory. Much to Y5's amusement, Miss Trenchard and Mrs Jones were press-ganged into service! Having loaded the Victory's provisions, we set sail and discussed Nelson's new battle tactics. Ask us about 'slops' and where the expression 'three square meals a day' comes from... 



Hampshire Fire Service came to discuss Arson Awareness with us. We worked hard with serving firefighters, discussing peer pressure and 'doing the right thing'. Later, as forensic scientists, in their mobile unit we deduced how a fire had started by examining a 'before' and 'after' scene.

We discussed the importance of regularly testing our smoke detectors at home and how we could help our families create a simple Emergency Evacuation Plan to help keep us all safe.



Year 6 visited Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard. As historians and geographers, we were thinking hard about why Portsmouth is so important in our country's naval history. Why was HMS Warrior significant in terms of ship design in the late 19th Century? What was life like on board? What evidence could we find to support our ideas and opinions? We also looked at the history of our modern Navy, how ship design has changed since Nelson's era and the changing role of the Royal Navy today.



Thanks to all Y6 parents who attended our SATs workshop. More information will be uploaded over the coming weeks about how you can best support your child. In the meantime, lots of daily reading at home, with an adult whenever possible. Your child's reading journal contains a summary of reading assessment focuses that we're working towards in class. Especially work on AF3 if you can - deduction & inference. This is all about piecing together ideas and opinions based on clues  in the text. 


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