Panthers Class Blog



We have reached our final term in Year 5, can you believe it? Once again, we have an exciting topic to sink our teeth into and one that is sure not to disappoint! 

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To begin the term, we explored our newly decorated classrooms and dived straight into the life of a Victorian school child as Miss Hanlon introduced some strict rules. We were no longer allowed to put our hands up to answer questions, we couldn't ask questions ourselves and whenever an adult enters the room, we must stand! It's fair to say, it was a challenge for all, including Miss Hanlon!

Since then, we have been quizzed, started our class read, 'Street Child' and we have began to research what Victorian life was really like! We can't wait for what else is to come! We have asked Miss Hanlon to continue with the Victorian rules too, but we shall see how long that lasts! 

Keep an eye out for pictures of our learning and classroom as the first full week commences! And of course, there will be more Star Writers this term!


In Science this term, we will be learning about living things and their habitats. We began this topic by looking at flowering plants and the parts of a flowering plant. In order to do this, we had to dissect a tulip - which for some of us was difficult as they were very pretty. 

You can see a couple of pictures of our Science learning below. 

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 We have also potted our own sunflower seeds to watch the plants grow! Unfortunately, some have not grown since they were planted but we are having a second attempt with those and will update you with our progress and the line graphs we produce from our regular checks. 

Since the dissecting the flowers, we have learnt about the life cycle of flowering plants, frogs and ants. We will be following up this learning with the life cycle of human beings. 

CHaOS Day at Irchester

On the 3rd July, we were lucky enough to be invited to Irchester Primary to take part in CHaOS day; CHaOS day was a Science day ran by a team from Cambridge University. We had the chance to experience lots of Science related activities and even had a go at some things ourselves. Lots of scientific vocabulary was recapped and learning was reinforced from throughout the year. It was fantastic to see how links could be made between different areas of Science. 

A firm favourite with most children was the 'Water Rockets' activity which saw children and the leader of this activity getting sprayed with water as the rocket launched! 

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A brilliant morning was had by all and we were all keen to return to school to share the events of the morning.

 English and Reading 

Our key text to begin this term has been Street Child. As a class, we have recognised similar themes in this text to Goodnight Mister Tom from the World War 2 topic and we are enjoying how Berlie Doherty has developed the character of Jim. We keep pestering Miss Hanlon to give use a clue about the ending, but she is being very stubborn and insisting we reach the end of the story together. We are currently writing our own Street Child stories from a different perspective and have enjoyed making our own innovations during the story mapping process. Miss Hanlon is very excited to read the finished pieces and we can't wait to show you all of our hard work. 

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As well as Street Child, we have read some of Oliver Twist and have been able to make comparisons between his life and Jim Jarvis'. We have written setting descriptions about the workhouse, character descriptions about Fagin and diary entries as one of the characters. In our final week, we are rewriting a part of the story; we were allowed to choose from a selection of key events.

Team Games!

As we get closer to the end of term, we have had some opportunities to show how well we can work as a team, demonstrating our cooperation, growth-mindset and creativity. One game we played was the pyramid of cups using just string and an elastic band. This game required communication, precision and determination to create a pyramid out of cups. We were not allowed to touch the cups with our hands, but had to use an elastic band and some pieces of string to expand the band and pick up the cups. 

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Some of us were very creative with how to make the game more challenging and it was very enjoyable!

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Out of this World!

Welcome to Spring term! What an exciting topic we've got ahead of us this term! 

We returned to school on the 3rd January, with Christmas and festivities quickly becoming a distant memory as we received some very strange news from Ms Mohan and Mr McGeechan! A portal had been spotted on the school's security cameras. We couldn't quite understand where this had come from, as it had never been seen before, and hasn't been seen since! 

We decided it was time to ask the experts. So, both Year 5 and 6 have been busy writing letters to Leicester Space Centre to see if anyone can advise us on this strange occurrence. 

Leicester Space Centre Trip

Just a week into the term, we all visited the Leicester Space Centre to continue to build on our knowledge of Space. It was an exciting day for all, with a visit to the Planetarium, a walk around the Solar System and the Universe, and a climb up the Rocket Tower, where we got to become astronauts, which was the perfect photo opportunity. We were thrilled will all of the new facts to learn and share and can't wait to make use of these in our writing! 

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Astronaut's Handbook

As usual, we have had lots of books and resources to assist our learning this term but one book which has been of use recently, is the Astronaut's Handbook. This book inspired us to write our own handbooks for budding astronauts. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled in the coming weeks as pictures emerge of our finished product! 

Mission X

As a class, we have signed ourselves up to a project called Mission X, which gives us the opportunity to train like astronauts. We have been involving ourselves in physical activities in order to prepare our bodies for an astronaut's life. Each activity is designed to develop a physical requirement of an astronaut, from core strength to bone strength and density. 

After each activity, we get a number of points which can then be uploaded to the leader board for all teams involved. Our team name is 'Intergalactic Panthers', and so far, we are gaining lots of points! Go team!!

Star Writer!

Star Writer is a recent award introduced to the whole school and something we are now all working really hard towards; some of the writing of late from Panthers has been fantastic and we will be sharing this regularly. Here is an example of one Star Writer's work: 

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Do keep a look out for more Star Writers in the coming weeks! 

The Sea of Tranquillity

In the past couple of weeks, we have been looking at the book 'The Sea of Tranquillity' by Mark Haddon. We have found his writing style very interesting and are currently rewriting the story, with our own characters. We considered how Mark developed his character in the story, and have attempted to do the same in our versions. There's definitely an opportunity for one of us to become a Star Writer with this piece of work! We can't wait to see the finished pieces (neither can Miss Hanlon)!

Space exploration: good or bad? 

As a final part to our topic, we considered whether Space exploration was a good idea or not. We gathered reasons for and against and then decided on a side of the argument. We wrote a persuasive argument for our side and, by the end, we'd actually convinced ourselves! Keep an eye out for some examples of our arguments!

This was a fantastic topic for all! One that continued to wow us with every new part of Space we delved into! If only there was more time to explore this wonderful topic!

Courage and Conflict

First day back, and a tank arrived on the school car park! Of course, staff and children alike were extremely excited about this and minds started racing as to what our topic could be.

Upon entering the classroom, the children began to gather clues about the new topic. They were greeted by new displays, a new classroom layout and lots of topic books to dive into – some were thrilled with the new armchair which makes up part of the living-room-style reading corner. It’s a hit with the staff too!

From the off, facts and family tales were shared and it was clear that this was a topic to get our teeth into!

Each class had the opportunity to visit the tank and have a look around! In Panthers class, every single one of us climbed into the tank and had our photo taken as if we were driving the tank ourselves. As well as this, the doors were closed and we experienced what it was like to journey inside a tank as a soldier. The small space was unbelievable; they must have felt very hot and claustrophobic!

We had a quiz in which the teams came up with WW2 related names, ranging from The Evacuees to Team Tank. In addition to this, we began to piece together a WW2 timeline, identifying key dates that influenced events during WW2.

History off the Page

On Monday, we welcomed History off the Page for another fantastic day of learning! We were joined by Captain Hatfield and experienced a day in the life of a child at school during WW2, working alongside evacuees. Ink and paper was provided for us to practise our handwriting; some of us found this very challenging (including Miss Hanlon).

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We were also shown how to apply gas masks and deal with a fire should one occur. Once again, Miss Hanlon had a go at this and then we watched two other evacuees demonstrate. They had to be quick!

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We learnt about money during WW2. There were so many coins to remember – who knew there were 240 pennies in a pound?!

To end our day at the WW2 school, we sang the National Anthem with Captain Hatfield. He certainly sang it with pride!

Since then, we have been immersed in everything WW2 related and placing ourselves in the shoes of an evacuee. We listened to Neville Chamberlain’s announcement of war, we have been reading Goodnight Mister Tom (which we are all thoroughly enjoying), we imagined we were evacuees journeying to our new homes and we even wrote letters as if we were an evacuee writing home to a family member!


In Science, we have been looking at materials and their properties and are starting to think about how we can relate this to WW2 and items in everyday life. Watch this space to find out what we have been investigating! Maybe you can think of a good investigation question for us related to materials and WW2!


We decided upon an investigation question! Which material was best/most appropriate for Blackouts during WW2? We tested multiple materials, using a torch and a hand-made window frame. Most of us concluded that cardboard, black card or wood were the best and most practical materials for Blackouts as the torchlight was not visible from the opposite side.

Science Materials

We have now moved on to Forces in Science and have recently been thinking about Gravity and Air Resistance. We have created and tested our own parachutes to see which material or which sized parachute creates the most air resistance when falling from a set height. We will let you know our findings soon, so keep watching!

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Visitors and Duxford

We have been incredibly lucky this term, as we have been joined by a variety of people with a story to share. A few weeks ago, we got to hear the story of a real-life evacuee and her experiences. Margret had so much to share and helped us to imagine what it was really like to be a World War Two evacuee child. We are very grateful to her for giving up her time for us! 

We were also visited by a local lady from Bozeat who witnessed the plane crashing into one of the nearby fields! This was a story we had heard but to have a first-hand account of the event made it all the more realistic. She could recall all of the fine details of the day, as if it were just yesterday that it happened! 

On the 21st November, we visited Duxford Imperial War Museum and got to meet 3 war veterans to hear their first-hand account too! Each one of them had a different story to tell and a different experience; it was fascinating. There was lots of interesting facts to learn and aircrafts to be seen. We had a jam-packed day, with there being so much to see, but it was fantastic all the same. 

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