Year 4 Summer Term (2)

Road Trip USA! - Summer 2


Buckle up, sunglasses on. We’re going on a road trip across the good old US of A. Children will use their map skills to navigate their way around some of its most famous landmarks and send a postcard home to ask the question ‘Do you wish you were here?’ In geography and history the children will learn about the United States, past and present, developing a knowledge of Native American culture and discover new information about the Iroquois tribe. They will develop their map reading skills to identify the physical and human features of key locations in the United States. To enhance their learning they will go on a virtual tour of Yellowstone National Park.

This topic begins with the children taking part in an interactive 'treasure hunt' on the school playground, to find the names of 50 states. 

This half term, we will use the picture book ‘Tuesday’ by David Wiesner to engage the children’s imaginations. They will write descriptions to build a rich and varied vocabulary and draft a diary entry to recount the events that took place in chronological order. They will explore the thoughts and feelings of various characters within the picture book to support them to plan, draft and write their own fantasy story. The children will have the opportunity for cross curricular writing linked to their Geography topic ‘Road Trip USA’. They will research and retrieve information about an American destination and plan, draft and write a persuasive extract for a holiday brochure. 

Living Things and their habitats will continue to be the focus for our science lessons. Children know lots about animals from an early age, such as where they live, the sounds they make and whether they are wild or kept as pets. This unit consolidates this learning and develops it to a more scientific level through classification. Children are encouraged to group animals dependant on different factors, such as: Are they a vertebrate? Are they warm or cold-blooded? What is their diet like? At the end of the unit, children will be able to distinguish between groups of animals and also understand how they adapt to the habitats they reside in. 

This half term, our computing lessons will focus on two Purple Mash units ‘Animation’ and ‘Effective Searching’. Within the ‘Animation unit, children will animate an object by putting together a simple animation using paper to create a flick book. They will begin to understand animation frames using 2Animate. They will learn about Stop Motion Animation and how it is created and use ideas from existing ‘stop motion’ films to recreate their own animation. During the ‘Effective Searching’ unit, children will use a search engine to locate specific information and analyse the contents of a web page for clues about the credibility of the information to understand reliable information sources online.  


In design and technology we will look at the unit: Fresh Food, Good Food. This project teaches children about food decay and preservation. They discover key inventions in food preservation and packaging, then make examples. The children will create their own recipe for a healthy snack. They will develop their cutting skills to prepare their healthy snack and then evaluate it.  


Help your child prepare for their project
The USA is an incredible place, with a varied landscape and culture. Why not choose a state to research together and create a scrapbook of exciting locations? You could also make a playlist of American songs from different genres that you could listen to on your road trip. Alternatively, visit the supermarket together to see if you can identify any foods associated with the USA. You might even try some of them!