Congratulations to everyone on completing the SATs – and without any fuss and bother 🙂
We’ve started a new project on ‘Ways of thinking and living in China’. Here are a few opening thoughts and comments from Nell, Sylvie, Zeca, Ellie, Patrick and Emily:
- I think we can learn from China by looking at their different culture and they looking at ours – maybe adjusting ours as well. Nell
- I think if people learn their [Chinese] ideas, thinking and opinions, and they learn ours, it could bring the world closer together and create a better understanding between different ways of life. Sylvie
- We can learn about their types of medicine, their lives, routines and more. Zeca
- I definitely know that we can learn from the Chinese because they believe in Daoism – and that’s the flow of the universe – instead of just inventing and building for the sake of it like we do. Ellie
- I think we can learn from the way Chinese people live, and they can learn about how we live, because we still live in the same world and people should learn not to be prejudiced. I think that England should start thinking more about other countries’ lifestyles because we don’t have all the ideas. You need to listen to others to make the world better. Emily
- I think we can learn how Chinese people think and live, and experience the way they live and how it is different to our lifestyle. Patrick
The boys’ sililoquies have mostly not recorded well unfortunately – so here are just a few of them.
What have I become?
Have the three hags made me a monster? Nay, it was I who put the wicked forces upon me.
Will all the oceans clean me of this guilt?
No, but rather turn the sea incarnadine.
Blood begets blood: Duncan, now Macduff.
When will the noble blood stop spilling?
Even the throne does not b ring me happiness but instead melancholy.
Away Duncan! Away damn vision that haunts my eyes!
Life is but a candle melting away till the light goes.
It is not worth living.
What is happening to me?
Why have I slaughtered?
My veins are poisoned with desire to kill.
I was once a hero, then I committed treason.
My life is Scotland’s defeat.
Blood brings blood; why did I start this?
What’s done is done.
What have I turned into?
A great leader, loved and trusted by my men.
Now a shell of a man, diminished to king killer. My best friend, children, many innocent lives.
Taken because of my greed.
I am tortured by my deeds!
I don’t recognise the man I’ve become
These hands have become possessed. I have gone too far to be able to turn back.
What shall I be?
A killer of a warrior.
Forces of evil made me a king killer.
Will nothing get rid of the horror from my body?
Blood begets blood; first my king, then my friend, and then innocents.
The blood began to ooze into the river of my soul.
Is there no end to this slaughter?
This isn’t happiness; this is death.
What have I become?
Is this regret in my eyes?
Why must I cause this endless violence?
Lady Macbeth and myself are strangers
These hands will never be rid of the blood of a king and best friend.
Greed has got the better of me and I shall suffer the consequences.
These damned visions will die with me.
We talked today about how we are shaped, as human beings, both by our genetic inheritance and by our environment (our life experiences and the choices that we make).
The children had to try to say which – genes or life experience – they thought was a more important influence on their development as a person. Most thought it was their environment.
- Zeca: I personally think that the way you were born doesn’t matter. The most important thing to me is nurture.
- Sylvie: I think the most important is probably environmental because it’s how you’re brought up that determines how happy you are or how your personality is built.
- Faisal: I think environment more than genes because you choose what you want to do and you choose the path you want to follow.
- Sonny: My life is more important than my genes.
- Sarafina. Environment shapes you as a person. You kind of have a growth mindset if you believe in nurture. If you don’t it’s a bit like you’re saying ‘I’m born this way and I can’t change it.’
- Jim says that he’s grown up in a protective environment with caring parents. He says, ‘Even if I had been born in a troubled part of the world, and had the same parents, I would still be roughly who I am now.’
- Nina gave this careful and balanced assessment: I have inherited my mouth, teeth, nose, and eyebrows from my dad. I got my eyes, hair colour and ears from my mum. My parents both run and I think that I inherit half of that from them but I train and do a lot of cross country running to help…. and get lots of encouragement. I personally think that you could be born with a talent and not practise or you could not be born with a talent but train really hard and succeed. I think that envrionment and nurture is more important because it’s your choice of what to do or be.
Add your own thoughts by replying to this post.
Bonus question: which member of the class has evolved from this young lady?
We asked the class to round off this half-term’s science project by reflecting on what they felt they had learned about science. Here are some of the extremely interesting and thoughtful responses.
Sylvie wrote: ‘I have learned that science isn’t about the teacher knowing the answer to the question – it should be about the children finding out for themselves. It is about trying something new, combining as much information as you can from other scientists, then putting it together into a new experiment. Use what you know. Ask the questions that can be useful. Change the world for good. But it’s not just about the bigness of changing the world in enormous ways. You should also do small experiments that add up to a better understanding of the world.’
Sylvie captures the spirit of scientific enquiry – but using science to change the world for good is a great point too (and not one that we much discussed). Microbiology, as many other areas of science, has so much potential for both good and harm. Nina said that ‘Science gives us power over our surroundings’ and Zeca that ‘Science is basically everything. It’s like the future.’ So we must surely want young scientists to give thought to the purpose and goals of science at the same time as generating new knowledge.
Patrick said, ‘I learnt to think like a scientist.’ Caspar, ‘Ask lots of questions and don’t hold back.’ Archie said: ‘I have learned that in science you can’t really do an experiment once because the results sometimes vary… Science is about doing experiments and finding out new stuff about the world by asking questions.’
Eleanor compared science to a large experiment with endless possibilities. Mohammed said something similar: ‘What I like about science is that there is always a new and better experiment.’ And Jim came up with a great idea for continuing his team’s experiment, which was to use yeast to generate CO2 and then use this to see whether mould will grow on bread in an atmosphere of CO2 or whether it needs oxygen.
To mark the 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s birth, the children wrote reflections, in independent learning, about what he has meant to them so far in their young lives. Here are thoughts we enjoyed from Faith, Zeca, Nell, Jim and Sylvie – d0 add your own.
Faith. Roald Dahl was an extremely creative person. He had a great spirit and soul. Even now he lives on for some people. His books make hundreds of children and adults laugh. He has written over 50 books! Children love his books. They’re full with joy, laughter and sometimes sadness. Even though he has died, he may live and breath among us until the end of time.
Zeca. Roald Dahl is Roald Dahl: awesome, growth-minded, excellent, wonderful, creative, impressive, hard working, undescribable.
Nell. I think all of his books are wonderful. They make me laugh. They make me sad. And they make me want to keep on reading all night.
Jim. To me, Roald Dahl means many hours of great childhood memories…. I think of dark, rainy nights with my light on reading.
Sylvie. Roald Dahl is a source of crazy words! His world is crazy…. and you could call it BIG like what goes on in his stories. Roald Dahl is a phizzwhizzing author!