Year 6

Dear Parents/Carer of Year 6,

Happy New Year! We hope you had a relaxing holiday with your friends and family ready for another busy term in Year 6.

End of Key Stage 2 assessments

At the start of the summer term, all Year 6 children are assessed through tests and ‘official’ teacher assessment grades.

These assessments are important for your child to do as well in as they can as the results provide standardised information to secondary schools about their attainment on entry to Year 7 (which in some schools is used to decide which set or stream they are placed in), and this then sets what they should achieve in their GCSEs in Year 11 if they make good progress in the secondary school.

Secondary schools are judged by OfSTED on how well the children progress from their Year 6 results to their GCSEs, the higher the results, the higher the expectation is on secondary schools to get children to GCSE passes and higher grades.

They are also important assessments for Belleville as all primary schools are judged on how well children achieve in Year 6 and the progress they have made since Year 2.

End of Key Stage 2 National Tests

All Year 6 children in England sit the same tests on the same days in May. It is very important that you do not book any time off school (holidays, appointments etc) in the dates below. Although in some circumstances children can take the tests later, it will be in different rooms and they cannot have any contact with the rest of Year 6 to maintain test security.

The tests will take place on the following days in school:

Monday 8th May             Reading comprehension (one test)

Tuesday 9th May            Grammar, vocabulary and punctuation test

                                     Spelling test

Wednesday 10th May     Maths Paper 1 (arithmetic)

Maths Paper 2 (reasoning and problem solving)

Thursday 11th May         Maths Paper 3 (reasoning and problem solving)

The tests cover all of the Key Stage 2 curriculum with most of the questions based on the Year 5 and 6 objectives. The children have been and will continue to learn the curriculum content and complete practice tests to familiarise them with the format and provide teachers with information on what they need to teach more of.

End of Key Stage 2 Teacher Assessments

Along with the tests, each child has a teacher assessment of reading, writing, mathematics and science against a national framework of statements. Teachers need to gather evidence that children are achieving these statements from now until June when the assessments are submitted to the DfE.

This framework was introduced, along with some changes to the tests, in 2016 and is very different to the way end of Key Stage 2 teacher assessments were made before 2016. This framework is being used again in 2017 by the DfE although it was supposed to be for one year only.

For each subject there are a set of statements that teachers need to prove the children have achieved to be given that grade. These are Key Stage 2 objectives but they do not cover the whole curriculum e.g. in writing, there are no statements for the composition objectives. Your child will still receive a report and assessments by the class teacher for the end of Year 6 which covers all of the curriculum. The grades are as follows:

Reading, mathematics and science

‘Working at the expected standard’ or not.

There is no greater depth (i.e. higher than expected) grade for these subjects.

Writing

‘Working towards the expected standard’ i.e. below expected for Year 6

‘Working at the expected standard’

‘Greater depth within the expected standard’ i.e. more difficult objectives achieved

To be assessed at being at a certain grade, the teachers need to have a number of pieces of evidence that the child has achieved all of the statements for that grade, and in writing, they need to have achieved all of the statements that come before it.

For example, if a child has achieved all of the ‘Working at’ statements but is not using paragraphs to organise ideas which is in the lower ‘Working towards’ description that child has to be assessed as ‘Working towards’ (i.e. below).

If a child has achieved all of the ‘Greater depth’ statements but does not have fluent, legible and speedy handwriting which is in the ‘Working at’ description, they cannot be assessed as being at ‘Greater depth’.

There is no overall test for writing, so your child’s writing assessment for the end of Key Stage 2 is all done through teacher assessment against these descriptors.

The statement descriptions are attached for your reference and in the Year 6 section on the school website.

Homework

Online English and maths homework is set on a Wednesday and will need to be completed by Monday morning as we review this in class.

For English, from today it will be on www.spag.com  instead of IXL. We have been using www.spag.com since 2015 as it provides good mixed practice of the content in a format that is very similar to the test in May. Your child’s login details have been sent in the spring term letter.

Please see the glossary of terms we sent home at the end of last term which can support them in completing this homework. Maths will continue to be set on Mathletics as previously. Children are expected to spend around 45 minutes on each piece of homework, it should take no longer than 60 minutes, please let your child's teacher know if they are struggling with their homework and we can adjust what is being set.

Every child has 5 spellings to learn each week which are checked by the class teacher and we ask that you confirm that your child has been practicing them at home by signing the spelling record. Please also ensure your child has a quick recall of all their times tables and the related division facts if they do not already as this can be a big barrier to success in maths.

In the reading record, children should continue to record and complete their reading homework as well as the other books they have read. We will note your child’s reading targets for that half term in the record and when your child has read.

Children will need to bring their record with them every day. Please sign the record each week, as this is a useful form of parent/teacher communication and get children into useful habits for secondary school when planners etc. need to be checked by parents/carers.

Topics and Curriculum Areas  - Year 6 Spring Term

Although we are working towards these assessments, we still have a broad, balanced and (hopefully) interesting and exciting curriculum planned for your children as below:

English

This term we will be focusing on different writing styles including; description, narrative (stories), newspaper articles, non-chronological reports and persuasion which will be supported by one key text, ‘Holes’ by Louis Sachar. The children will continue to develop their use of grammar, punctuation and spelling. In the final few weeks we will be looking at narrative poetry using ‘The Highwayman’.

Maths

The children will be studying decimals, where they will look at reading and writing decimals and understanding their worth (place value), multiplying and dividing decimals and writing fractions as decimals. In our unit on measures, children will learn to convert units of length, mass, volume and time and solve problems.

Science

The children will be studying the unit ‘Light up your World’ in which we will be looking at how we see things, shadows and using graphs to plot investigations’ results. Later in the term, they will be studying the unit ‘Body Pump’ exploring the workings of the human heart and learning about blood and what it contains.

History

During this term we will be exploring the question ‘Who are the British?’ which looks into movement and settlement in the UK and in our local area, through a variety of primary and secondary sources. Throughout the unit we will find out about different groups of people who have moved to and settled in Britain throughout the centuries from the Saxons and Romans to the 20th Century and how their experiences differed.

RE and PSCHE

In RE we will be studying Humanism. Next half-term, in PSCHE, we will be learning about ‘Keeping Healthy and Safe.’ Please refer to our letter about this unit, which will be sent out just before the unit commences, for more information.

ICT and DT

This half term Year 6 will be using ‘Wildforms’ with Mr Ziriat to pose questions, collect, interpret and present survey data. After half term, Mr Lynch will be having each class for a whole day for a mixed Design and Technology and Computing project building their own computers using Raspberry pi and programming them.

Art and Design

The children begin this term with a unit on weaving inspired by the textiles artist Mona Hartoum, looking at uses of weaving in different cultures around the world and creating their own designs and textiles to represent their own culture.

PE

This term children will have indoor and outdoor PE.  It is essential that the children bring a change of t-shirt, shorts/jogging bottoms and suitable footwear. Could you please ensure all kits and school uniform are clearly marked with your child’s full name. Children are allowed to bring in a roll on deodorant if they wish (no sprays please).

Gymnastics

Outdoor Games

6H:    Tuesday

6L:     Wednesday

6MT:  Wednesday

6S:    Wednesday

6H:    Friday

6L:     Tuesday

6MT:  Friday

6S:    Monday

Music:

We are very pleased that Year 6 will be participating in the borough-wide singing project led by the Wandsworth Music Service vocal leaders in the spring term, starting from next week. Those parents and carers with children in Years 8 and 9 may well remember the fantastic performances from previous years – we will be writing to you later in the term with some performance dates for your diaries. 

As always, we strive to work with you to help your child as much as we can. Please feel free to contact us if we can help in any way.

Yours sincerely,

Noemi Suarez (6S)     Simon Hudd (6H)    Siobhan Lindsay (6L)     Shona Anne McTernan and Clare Trotter (6MT)

Download the Interim teacher assessment frameworks at the end of key stage 2

Download the Mill Rythe Presentation and flyer


Download the Year 6 presentaion notes


Download the Year 6 SPAG letter 2015/16


Common questions and answers

Q:  What are the relevance of SATs?
A:  The purpose of the SATs tests is to assess the attainment of pupils at the end of their primary education.  This information is passed on to secondary schools, and may be used to place your child in appropriate ability groups or classes.  Secondary schools are also judged on how much progress children make in their school based on Key Satge 2 SATs. 

Q: How long should homework take?
A:  45mins - 1hr of English and 45mins -1hr of Maths each week.  Reading homework is sent home weekly and children are expected to continue to read every night.  If children don’t understand, they have an opportunity to check with their teacher on Friday or Monday, before it is handed in on Tuesday.  If you find your child is spending more than 1 hour on the work, speak to your child’s teacher. 

Q: Are all children in the same groups and tables?
A: Children will be in different seats and may sit at different tables for different subjects.  This is decided by the individual teacher.  Groups may/may not be ability based and are fluid because children’s skills are varied and will change as they year goes on.

Q: Can parents get a copy of the maths curriculum?
A: The maths curriculum and content can be found online at:
http://curriculum.qcda.gov.uk/key-stages-1-and-2/subjects/mathematics/keystage2/index.aspx