24 February 2023

Posted on Friday 24 February 2023 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time has a reading and oracy theme. This is because on Thursday 02 March 2023 it is World Book Day. To celebrate reading, we’d like you to have some conversations about your favourite books and or/authors.

I can talk about my favourite book and/or author.

You can come up with your own ideas for how to show this. Ideas might include:

  • giving a verbal book review of your favourite book
  • describing a character from your favourite book
  • giving a one minute speech on your favourite book, persuading others to read it – consider what the most exciting parts are, which characters you love or you love to hate, who might enjoy reading it next and why

When you’re happy with what you want to say, turn your attention to speaking aloud with confidence and clarity. This week’s Remember 2s (R2s) will help with that:

  • Speak clearly in a loud voice without shouting.
  • Pause for breath at the right places to make sure your speaking at an appropriate pace.
  • Face your audience.

This homework will be celebrated on World Book Day itself, Thursday 02 March 2023.

03 February 2023

Posted on Friday 03 February 2023 by Mr Roundtree

This week, our Talk Time is in preparation for Safer Internet Day on Tuesday 07 February. We’ll have a full day of learning based around internet safety. With that in mind, start to think about ways you already keep yourself safe when online.

I can talk about ways to keep myself safe online

Things you might like to consider are:

  • Age restrictions – where might you see these and why are these used?
  • Digital content – do you know what a digital footprint is?
  • Mis information, disinformation and hoaxes – are all things we read true?
  • Fake websites and scam emails – are all websites trusted?
  • Password safety
  • Personal data and keeping it safe online
  • Online vs offline behaviour
  • Impact on quality of life and having a balance of online and offline activities

Have a conversation with your family and friends about how you already keep yourself safe online. After your conversation, take some time to reflect on yours and others responses. Is there anything that you could change or do differently to help keep yourself even safer online? Is there anything you’d like to know more about?

27 January 2023

Posted on Friday 27 January 2023 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time has a moral theme.

Who’s responsibility is it to keep me safe?

Safety covers so many areas; your discussions could centre around these forms of safety as well as any others that you know of:

  • Online safety (e-safety)
  • Fire safety
  • Road safety
  • Electrical safety
  • Water safety

For each type of safety, talk about different settings and examples of when you might be faced with risks and how your adult or you would safely deal with them. For each situation, think about who’s responsible for evaluating the risks involved. Is it solely your adult at home/school or do you hold some of the responsibility in keeping yourself safe? Does your age impact on your responsibility?

Here are some examples…

  • My adult lets me have a social media account and regularly monitors it to make sure I am safe but it’s also my responsibility to keep myself safe by telling my trusted adult if something happens that I do not feel comfortable with.
  • My adult lets me walk to and from school on my own but it’s also my responsibility to keep myself safe by walking on the footpaths, using crossings to cross the road safely and not talking to strangers.

Here are some R2s (Remember tos) to help you stay safe:

  • Think before you act.
  • Assess the risks. Is it safe?
  • If something goes wrong, again, think before you act.
  • Who can help you and how can you reach them?

20 January 2023

Posted on Friday 20 January 2023 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time is linked to our current topic Geography and has a social theme.

What could we do in our local environment to make a positive impact on the world?

Within our Geography lessons, we’re learning about the term ‘interdependence’. This is the dependence of two or more things on each other. Interdependence is closely linked to our Talk Time this week as there are things that we do on a local scale that have consequences on a national and international scale. For example, if you live within walking distance from school you could choose to walk rather than drive. This would impact the world in a positive way as there would be one fewer cars on the road, helping to reduce the CO2 emissions.

Use this time to have a discussion at home with family and friends. You could think about the following:

  • What have you seen around your local area that has been designed to support the local environment? (i.e. recycling areas, litter picking)
  • How does this have a positive impact on the world?
  • Is there a change you could make in your life to help the local environment?

Additionally, or alternatively, you might like your child to consider our current Christian value…

At St James’ CE Primary School, we learn about Christian values that help us to become well-rounded citizens in society. The values are woven into our everyday school life. Each half term, we have a new Christian value that will be embedded into our collective worship and our reflection areas.

This half term, our Christian Value is honesty.

What is honesty? Honesty is being trustworthy and truthful in our friendships, our relationships, our school and our community. We understand that we need to be honest and truthful with others when working together as a team. It’s not always easy to be honest but it’s something we must strive to do.

‘Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.’ (1 John 13:18)

With your grown-ups, play ‘True or False’. Take it in turns to say a statement and the opposite person needs to decide if it is true or false. This game reminds us that we should always use our own knowledge to decide what’s true – we do not have to believe without thinking for ourselves. Sometimes we may even need to ask for help and learn new things to discover truth — such as when someone says a statement which is not clearly true or false to us (such as ‘I am ten feet tall’ when we don’t know how much ten feet is). Knowing when to ask questions, and remembering to use our minds when we hear things, is important for investigating what is actually truth.

13 January 2023

Posted on Friday 13 January 2023 by Mr Roundtree

Vocabulary is the focus of this week’s homework. This is because we’ve just begun a new Geography topic and with it comes new Geography vocabulary.

Here’s a list of key words that are being learnt and applied as part of our learning. Over the half-term, practise using these words with your child.

Years 1 and 2 Geography vocabulary:
• locality: an area or neighbourhood
• environment: the surroundings of a human, animal or plant
• recycling: turning waste into new materials
• pollution: something harmful or poisonous in an environment
• to survey: to find the opinions of a group of people by asking them questions
• physical geography: physical geography looks at the natural things in our environment
• human geography: human geography looks at changes in the environment by humans
• issue: an important topic or problem that needs discussion
• solution: a way of solving an issue or problem

Years 3 and 4 Geography vocabulary:
• tectonic plates: different pieces of the Earth’s crust which fit together like a jigsaw and move in different directions and at different speeds
• volcano: an opening in the Earth’s crust that allows magma, ash and gases to escape
• magma: molten rock (rock so hot that it has turned into liquid) which is underneath the Earth’s crust
• lava: when magma reaches the surface of the Earth it is called lava
• active volcano: these have a recent history of eruptions and are likely to erupt again
• dormant volcano: these have not erupted for a very long time but may erupt at a future time
• extinct volcano: these are not expected to erupt in the future
• land-use: the specific purpose that an area of land is used for
• geothermal: heat produced from within the Earth (geo means earth and thermal means heat)

Years 5 and 6 Geography vocabulary:
• climate zones: different parts of the world grouped by temperature and rainfall (eg the Met Office give six: arid, equatorial, Mediterranean, polar, snow and temperate)
• climate change: a change in climate (temperature and rainfall) over a period of time (also known as ‘climate crisis’ and ‘climate emergency’)
• global warming: an outcome of climate change: a gradual increase in the overall temperature of the Earth (also known as ‘global heating’)
• latitude: imaginary lines which show how north or south a place is (the equator is the best-known line of latitude)
• fossil fuel: a non-renewable energy source, formed from the remains of plants and animals that died millions of years ago (eg coal, oil, gas)
• renewable energy: a source of energy that is sustainable so it will never run out (eg wind energy, solar energy, tidal energy)
• emission: an emission is something that been released into the world (eg carbon dioxide is an emission created when fossil fuels are burned)
• erosion: a process where materials are worn away and transported by natural forces such as wind or water
• groyne: a low wall or barrier built out into the sea from a beach to slow erosion

Some of these words have been introduced already but there may be others that are going to be covered in the coming weeks.

06 January 2023

Posted on Friday 06 January 2023 by Mr Roundtree

Our first Talk Time of 2023 has a reading and oracy theme.

I know a poem.

This week, you’re going to be learning a famous poem. It takes great resilience and remembering skills to be able to learn a poem – two of our 8Rs for learning.

Y1,2: Ning Nang Nong by Spike Milligan

On the Ning Nang Nong

Where the Cows go Bong!

and the monkeys all say BOO!

There’s a Nong Nang Ning

Where the trees go Ping!

And the tea pots jibber jabber joo.

On the Nong Ning Nang

All the mice go Clang

And you just can’t catch ’em when they do!

So its Ning Nang Nong

Cows go Bong!

Nong Nang Ning

Trees go ping

Nong Ning Nang

The mice go Clang

 What a noisy place to belong

is the Ning Nang Ning Nang Nong!!


Y3,4: Catch a Little Rhyme by Eve Mirriam (CC)

Once upon a time
I caught a little rhyme

I set it on the floor
but it ran right out the door

I chased it on my bicycle
but it melted to an icicle

I scooped it up in my hat
but it turned into a cat

I caught it by the tail
but it stretched into a whale

I followed it in a boat
but it changed into a goat

When I fed it tin and paper
it became a tall skyscraper

Then it grew into a kite
and flew far out of sight …

Y5,6: Daffodils by William Wordsworth

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

These talking points could be used to support your initial reading and understanding of the poem:

  • What’s the poem about?
  • Can you work out the meaning of tricky words and phrases by using the clues in the poem?
  • What’s the rhythm of the poem? Where do you pause for breaths?
  • Are there any rhymes (words ending with the same sounds (eg cat and hat)?
  • What other patterns do you notice (repeated words/lines, line lengths, themes/key messages)?

When you have a sound understanding of your chosen poem, turn your attentions to reading it aloud with confidence and clarity. This week’s Remember 2s (R2s) will help with that:

  • Speak clearly in a loud voice without shouting.
  • Pause for breath at the right places to make sure you read at an appropriate pace.
  • Face the reader as often as you can.

Here are some creative strategies that you might use to help you remember the poem – do what works best for you:

  • Create actions to go with certain words or phrases.
  • Draw a series of pictures to help you remember what comes next.
  • Say or sing the poem in a unique or funny voice.
  • Echo phrases/lines with someone at home.

09 December 2022

Posted on Friday 09 December 2022 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time relates to our Science learning. Each class has been finding out about one or two scientists as part of their Science lessons.

I can show off my knowledge of different scientists.

Year 1/2: John Dunlop

Year 3/4: Jane Goodall

Year 5/6: Carl Linnaeus and Sarah Fowler

Have a chat with someone at home about the scientist that you have been learning about in your Science sessions. Some things to consider when talking about a scientist is:

  • who they are
  • what they did
  • why their work was important
  • whether their work has an impact on life today

Challenge: Do you know of any other scientists? Can you talk about their work and say how it has impacted on life today?

02 December 2022

Posted on Friday 02 December 2022 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time poses a moral question:

Is physical health more important than mental health?

 What is physical health?

Physical health is about a healthy body. This includes proper nutrition and plenty of physical activity.

What is mental health?

Mental health is about a healthy mind. Mental health is a sense of identity and self-worth; positive family and peer relationships; an ability to be productive and to learn.

Have a discussion with friends and family at home. Consider what physical and mental health looks and feels like for you. Does this match up to your friends’ and family’s ideas?

After the discussion with friends and family, what conclusion do you reach? Do others around you agree?

25 November 2022

Posted on Friday 25 November 2022 by Mr Roundtree

This week’s Talk Time relates to this half term’s Art topic.

I can compare and contrast different artworks, architecture and designs. 

I can give my opinions, and back them up with reasons. 

In our Art lessons, we’re thinking about the work of these artists, architects and designers and we’re using the following vocabulary:

Y1,2 Artists:
George Seurat
Bridget Riley
Vocabulary: pointillism, op art

Y3,4 Architects:
St Paul’s Cathedral, Sir Christopher Wren
London Aquatic Centre, Zara Hadid
Vocabulary: architect, architecture

Y5,6 Designers:
William Morris
Orla Kiely
Vocabulary: pattern, repetition, symmetry, foreground, background

The key to this task is being able to explain thoughts and opinions. It’s worth remembering that the opinions of one person may not match those of another and that it’s okay to disagree.

We’d like your child to speak confidently and passionately about art. Using ‘because’ will encourage your child to think carefully about their own interpretation of the art. Offering your own opinions may also help your child to consider alternative viewpoints and perspectives.

Discussions about the art could take place in a number of ways. Here’s a couple of suggestions:

  • Discuss each piece separately before then looking at them side by side.
  • Have both pieces side by side from the start.

Whichever approach you opt for, referring to these questions and the vocabulary above will help to focus your discussions at home:

  • Explain what you like about each piece.
  • Explain what you dislike about each piece.
  • How are the two pieces similar?
  • How are the two pieces different?
  • Considering what is most important to you, which piece do you prefer?

Additionally, or alternatively, you might like your child to consider our current Christian value…

At St James’ CE Primary School, we learn about Christian values that help us to become well-rounded citizens in society. The values are woven into our everyday school life. Each half term, we have a new Christian value that will be embedded into our collective worship and our reflection areas.

This half term, our Christian value is compassion. The definition of compassion is a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is hurting, in pain, or has misfortune and is accompanied by a strong desire to help the suffering. Christians believe that Jesus is the greatest example of someone with true compassion. It’s not always easy to show compassion, especially when we feel like the person deserves their misfortune, but we try to show compassion to all who need it whether they are the same as us or different.

This week’s Talk Time homework is all about showing compassion.

‘If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion’
Dalai Lama

With your adults at home, have a chat about the quote by the Dalai Lama. Do you like this quote? What do you think it means? Does it really help you to be happy by showing compassion? Does showing compassion really help someone else?

Think about your day at school. Think of three times or places where you could show compassion to someone. Or, come up with your own quote about compassion – share it with your teacher so it can go on our Christian Values board in the hall.

18 November 2022

Posted on Friday 18 November 2022 by Mr Roundtree

Living and Learning is the focus of this week’s Talk Time.

I know how to STOP bullying.

 Our school vision is to be a happy and healthy place to achieve and believe. School will not be a happy and healthy place if we don’t know how to stop bullying.

As it’s Anti-Bullying Week, this week’s Talk Time homework is about what bullying is and how to stop it. In fact, ‘STOP’ is an acronym that provides a clear definition of bullying:

Several Times On Purpose

Getting upset/angry in the heat of the moment or accidentally bumping into someone isn’t considered bullying – as long as it’s a one-off. An example of bullying would be someone saying on multiple occasions that you can’t join in with their game. As part of your discussions at home, ask your child to identify examples of what bullying does and doesn’t look like.

‘STOP’ not only tells us what bullying is, but also how to make it stop:

Start Telling Other People.

The sooner we all tell others, the sooner bullying can stop. As well as give examples of bullying, make sure your child knows people at home and at school who they would alert if they were aware of bullying.

Encourage your child to remember both: Several Times On Purpose and Start Telling Other People.

This week’s Remember 2s (R2s) are actions to take if you see, or are the victim of, an unpleasant behaviour:

  • Challenge the behaviour with that person. It may well have been accidental or something not intended to be hurtful.
  • Tell that person that you don’t like that behaviour and that you want it to stop.
  • If the behaviour occurs again, let a trusted adult know so they can explore the situation.