Harton Puzzlers at the First Lego League 2017

After months of preparation, including: selecting new teammates; talking to water professionals, robot programming and reprogramming when things went wrong; survey taking, poster making and many more tasks, the day was finally upon us. On the 7th of December the Harton Puzzlers took part in the First Lego League’s Hydrodynamics challenge, as South Shields Museum.

We started our day with practises in ‘the Pit’, a room where all the groups were based. Our initial runs proved less successful than they were at school. Our first Robot challenge on the table gave us a score of 45 points. This was then followed by our technical talk – explaining our robot design and strategy for completing our table run.

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After a brief break in the Pit, we had to complete our presentation to the panel of judges. We talked through our idea to help the human water cycle – a water butt for using rain water to flush the toilet. We used bottles to show the amount of water it takes to flush a toilet (7.27L per flush!) and made a model made from Lego (obviously) to show how our design works.

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Next we had a long break until our next robot challenge, so we spent this time with half the group practising and altering the programming, and the other half talking to the other groups and getting them to take part in our Wayne Drop video game. They had to try and get Wayne from the clouds to our water butt, but avoiding leaves and birds flying past. Everybody got very competitive when playing and wanted to make it onto the leader board – including the organisers and Mrs Ratcliffe, when she visited us for support.

Our next robot challenge proved better than the first, with a new score of 50 points (5 were deducted because we had to pick up the robot from a mistake). Straight after this we had our ‘Teamwork’ challenge. We were given a task, to sort out a box of Lego and show how well we can work together as a team. This was followed by our final robot challenge with a higher score of 60 – missing out of 15 points from the tripod not landing in the desired position.

Here is the video of our final robot challenge:

We unfortunately missed out of the semi-finals – coming joint 5th – by only 5 points! We watched the semis and finals – with the Acers coming first!

The final part of our day was the presentations and awards ceremony. We did not win the day, however we did not come home empty handed. For our second year running, we won the Teamwork Trophy! Something we were incredibly pleased to achieve.

Our year 6’s are looking forward to a lunchtime outside, and the year 5’s will be keeping an eye out for the year 4 children they might want to join the team next year.

Woodland Trust Project

Each class, from nursery to Year  6, has been involved in planting trees delivered by the Woodland Trust. We’ve planted them in our yard, in the far field and around the car park. It has been a wonderful opportunity for everyone to work as part of a team and to help the environment. Toffee even joined some of the children. Can you spot him?

We can’t wait to see the trees grow!

 

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Visit from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue

Julie, from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue, talking about the 3 things fires need

Year 5 got a visit from Julie from the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue, to tell us about fire safety on the 22nd of November.

She advised us to think carefully about a fire plan in our homes, so we know what to do in our homes if we faced a fire. After watching a video of a fire starting in a bedroom and burning the entire room in only 3 and a half minutes. So she then showed us the sound of a smoke alarm and told us to check our own homes, to ensure they work and are in the correct place in a room. If we don’t have any smoke alarms, we should go to the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue website to get one sent to our homes for FREE.

We learned that we are old enough to go to prison for starting fires on purpose. The youngest age is 10!

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We ended with trying on some of the kit firefighters have to wear when working. The pants were huge on Katie and Megan’s gloves still smelled on smoke from fires they have been used in when saving lives. Finally, Hannah was timed to put the entire kit on (except the boots). Real fire fighters can do it in 29 seconds, and on her first and only try, Hannah managed it in 1 minute and 40 seconds. So not bad.

 

After Julie’s talk, there were lots of interest in becoming firemen and firewomen.

Y5F – Ancient Greeks at Durham University

On Friday 17th November, 5F and 5B went to Palace Green Library at Durham University to learn about the Ancient Greeks.

When we arrived, we were split into our two classes; 5F went into the gallery to complete a series of activities about Ancient Greece using the museum’s exhibits.

Task 1 – translating the names of Greek gods from the Ancient Greek alphabet. We used a table the find the correct letter so we could work out the names of the Olympian gods.

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Task 2 – labelling parts of a temple them building a temple out of bricks. This required teamwork and to make it more difficult, Mr Forster was looking for the pediment, the triangular prism roof shale, in particular.

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Task 3 – using the exhibits to match Ancient Greek pots to their names and purposes.

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Task 4 – playing Jacks, an Ancient Greek games using animal bones (ours were made of plastic). We had to throw the red bone into the air, grab as many white bones as we could before catching the red bone in the same hand. It was very difficult to grab and catch with the same hand. But still fun.

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The two classes swapped activities, so we were ask to draw artifacts, describe them and try to work out what they were used for. Most of the artifacts were replicas of Ancient Greek objects, however some were not. We had to be incredibly careful when handling the over 4000 year old objects! Then we had lunch.

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After lunch we had two more activities. The first was to create an offerings to the gods, as the Ancient Greeks made offerings to give to the gods to help them in problems they were having, such as: if you had a bad leg, you would make a clay leg and offer it to Apollo, the god of healing. We created a range of offerings to help us with problems we had, like Callum creating a foot to help with football and Elizabeth making a head to offer to Athena, goddess of wisdom, for help with her times tables.

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Our final activity of the day was to act out a Greek tragedy, using Greek masks to show the different characters in the play. The play was about Medea, wife of Jason, who was a witch and became so jealous of her husband marrying someone else, that she killed his bride, her husband and her own children to Jason, just so he would suffer. Despite being a tragedy, we had lots of fun and laughs, particularly at Lexi’s very convincing cackle.

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Remembrance Day 2017

We have being learning about why we celebrate Remembrance Day. On Thursday, we had a special assembly to remember the soldiers that died in World War One and in conflicts throughout the world.

We also learned that poppies are worn because they were the first flowers to grow on the battle field after the battle of the Somme.

The money raised from selling poppies in our school goes to the Royal British Legion to support injured soldiers.

Anti-Bullying Week – Odd Sock Day!

This year’s anti-bullying week got off to a fantastic start with our school’s involvement in Odd Sock Day , organised by the Anti-bullying Alliance.

First, the children were involved in an assembly, where their views on how they are kept safe in school and suggestions for developing this further were taken into account.

After taking some ‘creative’ photographs of the vast array of children’s socks, we talked about being unique – All Different, All Equal.

We will be entering our photographs in an Odd Socks Day Competition on Twitter – we are proud to be All different and All Equal.

 

Hoops4Health with the Newcastle Eagles

On the 10th of October, we had a visit from players of the Newcastle Eagles basketball team, including the head coach Fabulous Flournoy for the Hoops4Health roadshow. Once we all went into the hall, we were introduced to the players and they explained why they were visiting, including what we would be doing during the afternoon.

We started by talking about how we can be healthy, keeping ourselves hydrated and ways to exercise more. We warmed up by stretching our muscles; little muscles, like the eyebrows and shoulders, and our big muscles, like our legs and bums.

Next we talked about the most important muscle in our body: the heart. We found where it was, what size it was and how to find our pulse. Our pulses were quicker when doing exercise and slower when inactive. To prove this we did 10 seconds of active movement, such as sprinting on the spot, press ups and star jumps.

After our exercise, we did three different workshops about staying healthy. One workshop was about hydration and how important it is to keep us healthy. We now know loads of facts about water, let’s see how much you know: (Answers will be at the bottom, try not the cheat)

Working out the water questions.

Q1. How much of the earth is covered with water?

Q2: How much of the water in the world is available for us to drink?

Back in the hall, we completed drills to keep our heart rates up. These drills included dribbling relays – using both our hands – and passing the ball around our waists and between our legs.

In the final workshop we thought about ‘feeling good’ and looked at our well-being. We looked at recognising things we are good at when at home, school and in sport.

Q3: rearrange these letters to make a word – W E M T K O A R

We all came back to the hall, with our golden tickets for a Newcastle Eagles match. Our afternoon ended with a competition for some prizes. When Fab bounced the ball we had to clap, if we clapped and he didn’t bounce the ball, we were out.

Quickly, we began to fall. The final 4 people got prizes, with the final between Jessica and Hannah. The overall winner was Jessica, who won free tickets for her whole family to go VIP to an Eagles match.

Our winners of the game with the coaches.

Answers:

1: 2/3 (around 66%)

2: 1%

3: teamwork

The success of Canny Friday continues as our School Council led project has received national recognition. The project, which involved the collection of 1213 cans for the South Tyneside Food Bank, has received a ‘highly commended’ rating in the national Speaker’s School Council Awards 2017. Well done to all of our School Council members who worked so hard to make such a difference to our local community.

A canny afternoon at the food bank

The School Council were thrilled to visit the South Tyneside Food Bank last week. The trip, organised to celebrate the success of our ‘Canny Friday’ efforts, began with the children meeting the charity’s patron, Sir David Chapman. The School Council were keen to ask David and Maureen, a volunteer for Hospitality and Hope, about the difference that our donations had made to the lives of local community members. They were pleased to learn that almost all of our donations had already been placed into parcels and had been given to those in need.

After examining the contents of the food bank’s shelves, the children moved into another part of the building where they were surprised to find clothing, shoes, bedding and toys. Maureen explained that the charity were keen to support local families and individuals in a number of ways. The School Council could not believe their eyes when they discovered the soup kitchen, from which a variety of nutritious meals are served. The children enjoyed a drink and several snacks in the kitchen before returning to school.