Year 5 & 6 Class News

Biology – reproduction of plants

Posted on Sunday 16 June 2024 by Mr Freeman

Years 5 and 6 are engaging really well in our biology unit (reproduction). This unit links really well to our RSE lessons – the children have made accurate and appropriate links during both of these sessions.

This week, we have been looking at the different ways that plants can reproduce:

Sexual reproduction:

This method requires two plants. We have learnt about the male and female parts of plants and how they interact to create a seed or fruit (offspring). The stamen (male) produces pollen, which is transferred, by insects or wind, to the stigma of another plant (female). Here, the pollen fertilises and egg within the ovary and offspring is produced.


Asexual reproduction

Asexual reproduction is where a plant can reproduce on its own – it doesn’t need another plant to be fertilised.  There are various types of plants that are able to reproduce this way (below). The children found this extremely interesting – we even discussed being able to make clones of ourselves!

The children then went out into our gardening area to find some examples of plants that could reproduce in both ways.

Help at home: 

Go outside with your child and explore some of the plants in your garden/in your local area. Which method of reproduction would match each plant? Why? Typically, flowering plants reproduce sexually, but not always!

Spellings for the final half-term

Posted on Sunday 09 June 2024 by Mr Freeman

Day 2 at Robinwood

Posted on Thursday 06 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

Our Year 6 children have had another busy, fun day at Robinwood.

Year 6 residential

Posted on Wednesday 05 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

The Year 6 children have arrived at Robinwood and having a great first day and night. They’ve been raft building, canoeing and swinging on the trapeze!

Leeds United Wildcats!

Posted on Tuesday 04 June 2024 by Mr Freeman

Our key stage 2 girls were visited by Leeds United this week to explore and develop routes into football for girls. The morning began with a presentation on current female role models, football backgrounds and some top tips on how to achieve the best you can in all sports.

The children then went outside to take part in some fantastic drills and games run by Leeds. Each and every pupil tried their best and we were super proud of everyone – they were fantastic role models for St James.

We had lots of fantastic talent on show, too! Our visitors left with beaming smiles on their faces, as all of our pupils showed a real interest and desire to take part. Every pupil also used their manners extremely well all morning.

Help at home: There will be some leaflets and information on how our children can continue to be involved with Leeds United. Encourage your children to take up a sport, as they really enjoyed today’s workshop. If you need help getting in touch with any local clubs or events, please let me (Mr Freeman) know and I’ll help!


Living and Learning: I know that being physically active is physically and mentally healthy.

Posted on Friday 17 May 2024 by Mr Freeman

In our living and learning session this week, years 5 and 6 were learning about the five ways to wellbeing, with a deeper dive into the ‘being active‘ section:

Regular exercise can lift your mood and increase your energy levels. It doesn’t have to be strenuous or sporty to be effective. Pick something you enjoy so you’re more likely to stick with it.

For example:

  •  going for a walk during your day
  • following a workout video
  •  doing some ‘easy exercise’, like stretching, in the morning
    and before you go to bed
  • walking to school once or twice a week (if you live close enough)

Help at home:

What does your child already do to stay active on a daily basis? Is there anything you can add/change to these routines to stay healthy? Perhaps set some achievable goals with your child to be active – this could be daily or just a few times a week!

Living and Learning: I know the importance of ‘five a day’

Posted on Friday 10 May 2024 by Mr Freeman

This week, our living and learning statement is based on healthy eating and ensuring we keep a healthy, balanced diet. A key part of this is in the contents of our packed lunches in school. For our fluency sessions, we have been reading into our school policy around packed lunches (below). We discussed elements of our packed lunches that are vital (protein, carbohydrates, fruit and veg), and some elements that are fine in small portions (oils and spreads).  We used some great examples of what pupils have bought in their lunches and compared this to our recommended guidance – the packed lunches were successful against our healthy, balanced dietary advice.

Help at home: Encourage your child to make up their packed lunch with you at home. This way, your child can learn the contents of a packed lunch and why a variety is so important. You could ask questions whilst packing a lunch such as ‘Why are we adding this to the box?’ further develop understand of a healthy, balanced diet.

Wonders of the Amazon Rainforest!

Posted on Wednesday 08 May 2024 by Mr Freeman

In geography, years 5 and 6 have been focussing on the Amazon Rainforest (which spans across 9 South American countries, Brazil being the most prominent). We’ve learnt a lot about the climate, biome types and vegetation within the Amazon, but found it difficult to piece everything together. To help with this, the children researched the four layers of the rainforest, along with plants, animals and climate within them. We then used our notes to draw our interpretation of what the Amazon might look like, just like being in our Class Novel (Survivors)!

Here’s some of the brilliant learning from our pupils:

Living and Learning: I know the importance of sleep.

Posted on Friday 26 April 2024 by Mr Freeman

Our living and learning statement for this week was:

I know the importance of sleep.

As well as individual class living and learning sessions, the whole school attended our ‘Tuesday Viewsday‘ collective worship to learn more together. We discussed the role of sleep in our lives and it’s importance/lack of importance both personally and collectively (the world).

Children put forward some fantastic points of view to debate both sides of the importance of sleep – here’s some of the quotes:

‘I think sleep is important because it gives our brain a chance to rest so that we can do well in school the next day.’ (JC, Year 6)

‘Sleep is important for us to switch off and not think about things for a while. If we didn’t sleep, we would all just be tired and moody.’ (FJ, Year 2)

‘I don’t think sleep is important because it wastes time. We could be doing other things that we like instead of sleeping.’ (NE, Year 5)

‘Sleep can be important if you have a job, but if you don’t have a job or something to get up for, you’re wasting time in your life that you could use to help others or find something that you enjoy.’ (JS, Year 5)

Help at home:

Discuss the importance of sleep for a healthy, happy lifestyle with your child. Does your child know what a good amount of sleep is? Explore their thoughts on what might happen if they don’t get enough sleep, or they sleep too much!

Reading – The Highwayman (by Alfred Noyes)

Posted on Friday 19 April 2024 by Mr Freeman

This week, years 5 and 6 have been getting their teeth stuck into a new poem – The Highwayman (by Alfred Noyes). After reading the poem as a class, we discussed the meaning behind the story of the poem, and which emotions may have driven the way for this sad story.

Here’s what we came up with as a class:

Lots of these ideas derived from Tim the ostler, who’s plan to have the Highwayman killed ended with the death of his beloved Bess, the landlord’s daughter.

The vocabulary in this poem lead to further learning in our writing lessons – we looked at speech between characters within this story and what they may say to one another. The vocabulary used in the poem suggested a formal piece of speech was necessary to suit the purpose and the timeline, so the children have been hard at work practising their formal writing!

Towards the end of the week, the children practised their retrieval skills. One of their tasks was to draw and label the Highwayman, based on information they could retrieve from the text. Below is a small snippet of the text and some fantastic learning the children – do you think they have retrieved information successfully? Which parts of their drawings were retrieved facts, and which elements were their own interpretations?