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Year 6

21.06.24 - Euros!

Year 6 are so excited about the Euros and have really enjoyed delving deeper into our allocated teams: Spain, Slovakia and Slovenia. First, we researched the final matches from all previous Euros events to discover which teams have historically been most successful. We plotted the findings into bar graphs making sure we were neat and accurate in our work. We have researched the countries, producing some fantastic fact files to teach others about the language, food, landscape and notable figures from each place. Next, we had a go at redesigning the football kits - lots of creative and original ideas! We have also, of course, been enjoying practising our ball skills ahead of our football workshops next week. What a shame the Euros only take place every four years!



14.06.24 - Residential!

Year 6 have been looking forward to our residential all year, and this week it finally arrived and did not disappoint! The children spent two nights at Nell Bank in Ilkley playing games, exploring the great outdoors, learning about our beautiful surroundings and gaining some important life skills. They were fantastic company, showing the adults what resilient, independent and capable young people they have grown into. It was a pleasure to see them working together, supporting each other through challenges and celebrating each other’s triumphs. 

We hope they have made memories that will last a lifetime, and that they have caught up on some sleep since returning home!


10.06.24 - Nell Bank Day 1!

Today was the first day of our Year 6 residential to Nell Bank! We set off from school to Nell Bank and stopped at Otley Chevin to explore and to have a long walk in this stunning scenery. We then continued to Nell Bank and arrived for lunch. We had a great first day that ended with a quiz and hot chocolate before bed. We are having a great time and can't wait for day two!



24.05.24 - Science!

Year 6 have started a new Science topic: Classification. We have started by learning how to classify using dichotomous keys to group and separate things by their similar and different physical features. We had lots of fun doing this with sweets! 

We worked brilliantly in groups to describe the features we saw and discuss which characteristics we should use to group the sweets. We noticed that each group did it slightly differently, and are now going to explore the standard system of classification developed by Carl Linnaeus to classify living organisms.



17.05.24 - SATs Week!

Well done to our lovely Year 6 pupils who completed their SATs tests this week! They have worked very hard to use their learning over the last few years to answer the questions and displayed a mature attitude to their studies. 


10.05.24 - Literacy!

Over the next few weeks we are writing a story from another culture. This is inspired by our Early Islamic Civilisation topic and the 1001 Arabian Nights stories. We have studied several of these stories including Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, Aladdin and The Fisherman and the Genie. We identified common themes, settings and characters from these stories, as well as investigating food, drink, clothing and transport that might be found in our stores. We used all of this information to plan our own 1002nd story in the style of Scheherazade and have just begun writing. We hope you like the beginnings of our stories!



03.05.24 - Reading!

We have really encouraged our Year 6 children to develop a love of reading this year. A couple of weeks ago, we updated our book corners so there are plenty of new options for our children to choose from. We have been chatting to them about their choices - do they have a preferred genre? A favourite author? Is there a style of book they have never tried before? We have noticed how this is helping when we visit the school library; they are more purposeful in their search and able to explain why they have selected a particular book. 

We have also been using reading as a way to wind down from SATs preparation: reading independently or sharing a book with friends is a great way for us to relax!



26.04.24 - SATs Preparation!

SATs approach, Year 6 are working really hard to make sure we are prepared, so that we can go confidently into our exams, ready to show off what we can do.

That said, we are really proud of how well-rounded our curriculum is at Bankside and are still making sure there are lots of opportunities for collaboration, creativity and celebration. Here are a few snapshots from this week where you can see us enjoying learning together (being able to discuss and explain to each other helps solidify our own understanding), taking risks (using hand apparatus in gymnastics was definitely out of our comfort zone but we enjoyed it in the end!) and celebrating our successes. Ask our children what they have enjoyed this week; they have lots to choose from!


15.04.24 - Benjamin Zephaniah Week!

Our whole school has been learning about Benjamin Zephaniah this week - we have been really inspired! We have loved listening to his poetry and learning how to perform it as brilliantly as he did by using our voices and bodies to engage our audience.

We have also been really inspired by the BBC documentary where he revisits his hometown of Birmingham to write a poem! As we have been so busy exploring our own local areas last term, we have decided to write our own poems about Harehills and Chapeltown that would tell people all about our area and how we feel about it. The detail has been brilliant!

Additionally, we have been exploring the values that were important to Benjamin and thinking about the positive impact they can have on our own lives including veganism, peace and equality.



28.03.24 - French!

In Year 6, we are encouraging the children to use every day French vocabulary to express their preferences, talk about their families and follow instructions from their teachers. Our children are excellent linguists, with so many of them already speaking at least 2 languages at home, and they are enjoying French very much. They are noticing similarities between some French and English words, and gaining accuracy with their pronunciation. We have also discovered that the French language is not used exclusively in France. Why not ask your children to research some other parts of the world where French is spoken?



15.03.24 - Personal, Social, Health and Economic Learning (PSHE)!

Year 6 can be a tricky time for children; lots of change is happening, we have SATs exams to prepare for and we are also getting ready to leave Primary School, our teachers and some of our friends. In PSHE, we have been working to equip our children with the skills and resources they need to cope with difficult emotions. This week, our children worked in pairs to write advice columns in response to various ‘problems’ that children their age might experience. We were pleased that many of the children advised others to tell their parents about their feelings, and that several also recommended doing something nice like getting fresh air or eating a comforting meal to help them feel better.

We then had a look at the Childline website; we all knew the Childline phone number but have now learned that the website has loads of advice, activities, games and information that can help the children if they ever feel like they need it.



08.03.24 - RE!

In RE this half-term, Year 6 have been learning about Judaism. We’ve learned some key, historical figures and stories in the Jewish faith, such as David and Goliath, and it has been really valuable to learn some of the beliefs and values of people with a religion different to our own. This week, we learnt the story of Esther, and worked in groups to act this story out (we’re very good at big bossy pointy fingers!). Ask us about Mordecai, Esther and their story.



01.03.24 - Art

During our exploration of the local area, Year 6 discovered that many of the terraced houses had similar features such as red brick, large bay windows, cellars and grand entrances with colourful doors. We now know that these houses were built during Victorian times, and we have learned how to describe the features of Victorian architecture and design using technical language. We also know that terraced houses are common in this area because there were so many mill workers living here, and many of the houses are back-to-back to maximise on space. 

We were so impressed by the details of these Victorian facades that we decided to make detailed observational drawings of them, taking care to be accurate with size, spacing and shapes. The care and pride that the children have taken in their drawings has really impressed the teachers! Next, we hope to be able to make reliefs of these facades using clay.




19.02.24 - History!

Our ‘Local History’ topic has got all of Violet Base really excited to learn more about (and celebrate!) the place we live.

We began by examining deed poll data from the last 100 years and saw how some families have lived in the area for many years, whilst other houses have seen occupants come and go - and sometimes multiply - over time. This linked in nicely to our learning about the Windrush Generation and migration into the area following WW2.

We then used Google Maps to locate places of interest on a local map, and planned a route to visit them all.

Using our maps, we have been on a fairly gruelling local walk, examining local architecture and the way that, over time, the use of certain buildings has adapted to meet the diverse, multicultural needs of our community. Ask us about some of our local landmarks, particularly religious buildings, in the area!

At Bankside, we feel strongly that our children should develop a strong sense of identity, and by celebrating our local history, we have seen how their families and heritages have contributed to the culture-rich environment in which they live.


09.02.24 - PE!

This half term, Year 6 have had PE lessons with Charles from the Jason Robinson Foundation. The foundation have worked closely with pupils across the school for a couple of years and we feel really lucky to have the opportunity to learn some rugby skills from experts who play at a professional level. As well as developing our ball skills, agility and strategy as players, we have also been learning good sportsmanship and we know how important it is to celebrate each other’s triumphs, be gracious in defeat and support each other through disappointments. As you can see, we’ve been having lots of fun in the process!



02.02.24 - Super Science!

In Year 6, our Science topic for this half-term has been ‘Light’. We have learnt how to use scientific language and diagrams to accurately describe how light helps us see. Ask us to explain the words ‘luminous’, ‘emit’, ‘light source’ and ‘reflect’! We also investigated how light travels (or doesn’t!) through transparent, translucent and opaque objects. This was a good opportunity for us to use reasoning to make and explain predictions before we investigate further.

Our latest task has been to research and write about Lewis Latimer. Amongst his achievements, he was one of the men responsible for inventing the lightbulb, though he was uncredited for many years. At Bankside, we know it’s important to learn about, and celebrate, the contributions to science and culture made by people of colour. We’ll be using our research to create an engaging information text all about Lewis Latimer next week.




22.01.24 - Marvellous Maths!

This week, Year 6 have been revisiting our work on fractions and decimals to make sure we are really confident. We can do all sorts of things with fractions and decimals now, including multiplying, comparing and ordering and converting between the two. We have worked hard to understand that both fractions and decimals are different ways of expressing parts of a whole, and thus share many similarities.

One way we are ensuring our own understanding is learning how to explain our thoughts and methods to our classmates using precise mathematical language such as ‘partition’, ‘place value’, ‘common multiple’ and ‘integers’. Some of us were even brave enough to share their explanations in front of the whole class!

We are really proud of the progress we have made and are learning how to share and celebrate our successes with others!



15.01.24 - Focus on Literacy!

Year 6 have begun reading ‘Windrush Child’ by Benjamin Zephaniah, in which the main character, a boy named Leonard, faces terrible discrimination when he moves to the UK from Jamaica in 1958. We have been getting to know the main characters, and imagining what Leonard might want to say when another boy - supposedly his friend - asks him ignorant questions and begins an argument with him. We are really enjoying the story so far, though we have been shocked by some of the behaviour Leonard and his family have come up against.

Some of us have also been reading ‘Coming to England’ by Floella Benjamin and practising our dictionary skills to understand unfamiliar words. Just like Leonard, Floella and her family migrated to the UK from the Caribbean, but we are discovering that they have had very different experiences here. Making comparisons between books we have read has created some interesting discussions!