Croeso i Dosbarth Barcud!
In Year 6 our teacher is Mrs Halley. Miss Cannadine teaches our class each Tuesday.
Mrs Koscinska is our teaching assistant and she works in our class all week.
We share our class information as well as lots of the things that our class have been learning about using Seesaw. Should you need a link to your child’s Seesaw account please contact the school office or speak to Mrs Halley at the end of the school day.
Teaching and learning in our school changes each year according to the needs of the children in our classes however we would still like to give you an insight into what a year in Dosbarth Barcud looks like!
To help us to do this, we would like to share some of their adventures from last year….
We started our year with the topic ‘No Outsiders’ where the key message was ‘Everyone different, everyone welcome’. Our inquiry question was ‘In a world full of people, are we ever alone?’. We read the story of ‘Wisp’ and thought about this question from the point of view of a refugee before enjoying Malorie Blackman’s collection of poems ‘Cloud-busting’ which told the story of a child who bullied for being different. ‘Everybody Counts’ told us stories of a number of different people and helped us reflect on other groups of people who may feel isolated despite being surrounded by others. We made a pledge that there would be no-outsiders in our school.
Following on from this we began our topic on the UN Sustainable Development Goal 9 ‘Industry, innovation and infrastructure’ and we explored this through a geographical and historical lens, considering the changes in industry in Wales throughout the industrial revolution and how this changed the landscape and lives of people in Wales. We visited Llanberis to explore the slate museum and the miners’ cottages. Unfortunately, the journey to Llanberis was a bit much for many of us and some of our memories of this visit are not quite for the right reasons- we learned that travel sickness and being stuck on a hill in traffic was not a good combination! We have looked back on this and laughed though!
At the end of the year, we were lucky enough to visit Penrhyn Castle which was owned by Lord Pennant, who was the owner of the slate mines. This allowed us to compare and contrast the lives of the miners with those who owned the mines. What a stark contrast there was! We learned about the Great Strike and debated whether this was the right course of action for the miners. We also found out about coal mining locally and researched the disasters in Gresford colliery and Aberfan. We found that mining had a huge personal impact for people in our local area.
In the new year we began considering our topic from a more scientific perspective and reflected on the impact that the industrial revolution had on the environment. We read parts of ‘The Inconvenient Truth’ and Brian Padden’s ‘River’s Story’ before we looked at data relating to climate change. We found that we live in an industrial town but was this a good thing or a bad thing? We found out about the companies on Wrexham Industrial estate and the number of people they employ, many who are from the local area. We also researched their policies on being environmentally friendly. We found that companies such as Scottish Power, who have offices just a few miles from our school, are taking steps to reduce the impact that they have on the planet. We emailed them our questions about their policies and were excited to have a response outlining all of the work that they are doing to help the Sustainable Development Goals to be achieved!
With businesses in mind, we learned about a boy from Ghana who once set up his own small business. His name was Kojo and he was based on a real-life character ‘Kwabena Darko’ in a story called ‘One Hen’. We found out that Kojo had to pay to go to school and for his resources to be there; because he couldn’t do this he had to drop out! We know that under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, every child has the right to an education, so we were surprised to find that this was something that could happen. In the story Kojo bought just one hen using a loan from the bank in his village. By selling the eggs that were laid, he was able to buy more and more hens, eventually having enough money to go back to school and then on to business school. By the end of the story his business had grown so much that he was employing many of the people who lived in his village! Inspired by his business, we set about raising our own money and our collective enterprise projects enabled us to raise more than £350, more than enough to pay for ten living eggs and to leave £100 as a leavers legacy for the next Year 6 class!
When the eggs arrived, we had so much fun watching the chicks hatch and caring for them whilst they lived in our classroom. We were so grateful to Harry’s family who have now adopted them and helped to make this experience possible for us all. Watching the chicks hatch linked to our work on life cycles in plants and animals and led to work on interdependence and adaptation. We designed and built our own micro-habitats up at forest school. We read ‘Don’t let the disappear’ and found out about the range of different animals which are at risk of extinction due to human’s actions and impact on the environment (linked to Goal 15- Life on Land). We created models of our animals and used our digital literacy skills to create persuasive videos educating people about the plight of these animals.
As part of our inquiry into ‘What make’s Wales special?’ we all took photographs of special places within 5 miles of our school. This led to our ‘Pump Milltir’ project based on the work of Welsh Artist Janet Bell and led by our Creative Practitioner Jon Clayton. Together we walked up to Dinas Bran Castle from where, thanks to the beautiful weather, we could see exactly what lay between the castle and our school. We used lots of our ideas in our creative writing and we used the artwork we did on the trip, as well as a range of photographs taken during the visit, as inspiration for our paintings once we returned to school. We spent four full days on this ‘Lead Creative Schools’ project, developing our art skills but also our Learning Powers including confidence, resilience, and imagination. We loved being joined by our families to share our work and the process that we had used to create it.
We started to read the story ‘Where the Wilderness lives’ and wrote stories predicting how the book might end. We entered our movie based on the story into the ‘Book Slam’ competition and along with our class team’s discussion based on ‘The Quilt’ we won the regional rounds and got through to the national final of the competition with our movie receiving the highest score! Another great success has been our achievement in the Enterprise Troopers competition for our ‘Living Eggs’ project which we are also through to the national final in! In line with our school values, we’ve been aspirational this year and aimed to be the best we can be- and we have certainly succeeded!
A wonderful way to end the year was our visit to Nant BH. It was a jam-packed weekend beginning with a visit to Penrhyn Castle, followed by canoeing, gorge walking, high ropes, zip-wire, orienteering, walking and more! All of the adults agreed that the behaviour of the children on the trip was exemplary, and the weekend was thoroughly enjoyed by all. It was filled with challenges, yet the children laughed, smiled, and supported each other through every single one cementing special friendships as they went! Watching the children face and overcome so many challenges was proof, if it was ever needed, of just how capable and ready they are to take the next steps in their learning journeys as they now move on to their respective high schools. We are immensely proud of every single one of them and really do wish them every success in the future.
Well done Year 6- it has been the greatest pleasure!