I’ve just started work on Y4 Spelling flashcards to help support the delivery of the new spelling curriculum. I will be working down the list of objectives over the next few days. If you would like updates as they are ready then please click on the subscribe button and add your email address.
I made a Y4 Homophones game this week using construct 2 so I thought I would add it on to the site. It’s a memory card game where you have to (surprisingly!) match the different homophones e.g. effect and affect. In terms of teaching Y4 homophones this could be a great introduction or a nice activity for a pupil to do with a TA. The game just aims to make the pupils just a bit more aware of the different spellings they may encounter for words that sound the same. All the words for the game below use some of the example words from the new national curriculum.
Due to it being my first game that I’ve made outside Zondle I’ve had a bit of difficulty getting it to work in Chrome. You should have no problems in Internet Explorer however (I don’t know why….yet!)
You can play the game below or select the link from the Y3 and Y4 spellings menu.
There are a lot of Year 4 spelling words to teach and so I’ve created a list which links every Year 4 spelling objective in the new national curriculum to a game. I wanted somewhere to go where it was easy to access a game for each objective in the Year 4 spelling word list and so far the children in my own class have really enjoyed using them. The games were easy to set up and if you would prefer to set up your own for your class to use then have a look at Zondle.com. So far the games have worked well as a teaching tool and as a game for the students to play independently but could be equally as useful for homework activities.
At the moment I’ve split the statutory word lists into blocks of 20 (going roughly in alphabetical order) but this will be updated soon with suggestions of how to split some of the words. With such a busy curriculum it can be difficult to know how to fit both the spelling rules and the Year 4 Spelling words. If there can be a link made between the two then hopefully this could reduce some of content to be taught so I’ll be coming up with some games linked to this in the near future.
Please add your name to the contact list if you would to be informed when these are completed. You can access all the games for the Year 4 Spelling Words from by clicking the image below. The page also has a search function which allows you to paste in the objective from the new spelling curriculum that you are looking for.
Not sure about anyone else but my experience of using laptops in schools over the years has verged on dreadful! I’ve always been committed to making sure technology stayed in the classroom rather than in computer suites. But with laptops there always seemed to be something which could go wrong. Long boot ups, wireless not connecting, and batteries dying just seemed to drain confidence in staff. When I started introducing Ipads in schools many of those things started to evaporate and it was great to see teachers using technology in the classroom again with more confidence.
It was only last year when I actually used a Chromebook for the first time. I knew their general premise but couldn’t quite see how they would practically work in a school. I was wondering how we would save work, how children would use them, how reliable would they be and could we actually survive without Windows! We borrowed some chromebooks from a great company called C-learning and trialled them in the school. They were an instant hit with the children and teachers. I may have been lucky with the teachers at our school but they were using them on a regular basis with the children in class from day 1. The instant boot up time was appreciated and we combined Google Apps and other websites to offer a pretty good range of software.
After the trail we decided to buy a class set in September. Children in Key stage 2 were each given their own email and password and they started to save their documents within their google account. The children are now brilliant at getting logged on to the Chromebooks with their email ( from Y3). For key stage 1 children we set up whole year usernames and passwords just to make it quicker to get the children logged on. With a chromebook the children can just click on a picture and then enter a simple picture to get logged on. Using a chromebook does mean that the majority of your work on a computer has to be online so we signed up to purple mash. Google Apps didn’t seem quite right for those younger children.
The impact so far of Chromebooks at our school has been fantastic. Children from reception right the way up to Y6 use them on a regular basis and our use of Google apps and Google classroom is widening. We’ve had to try harder to make them accessible for key stage 1 children but we’re definitely getting there. For us Chromebooks in school has been a massive success so far.
Today I had a go at making an animated Christmas card on Scratch with a class of Year 3s and 4s. I was aiming to keep it pretty simple but motivated minds soon seemed to add a few layers of complexity than I was expecting! An example of the end result can be seen below…
Four steps to an interactive Christmas card on Scratch
1. The first that we did was to choose a Christmassy background and suitable character from the Scratch library. We wanted to make all the action happen from clicking the green flag so we ran over this quickly.
2. After sorting out a background and a main character which said something we moved on to getting snow to fall. This is the part the children found most difficult. It’s also the part they seemed to enjoy the most though! The trick was to get the children to place the snowflake where they wanted it to start and move the ‘go to X:’ tab across first. They then move the flake to where they wanted it to end up and moved the glide tab over. Quite a few ended up with stationary snowflakes at first! We did this for three of four flakes making sure we changed the glide time for each one.
3. Next the children were given complete free reign over what they wanted their characters to do. Some made them walk, some say thing and others put sound on their card.
4. The final part was adding a Christmas message. Just a simple ‘Merry Christmas’ did for us. I asked the children to make sure that the message was only displayed at the end of the animation. In the end something as simple as the message below was fine.
And that was it. Lots of fun, engagement and pride in what they had produced. A lovely way to round of this terms Scratch learning.