Birchwood Grove


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Year Five and Six

Click here to see our yearly overview. 

Summer Term

Ancient Greece

The remains of a young hoplite from Ancient Greece are found in a deep, dark cave. It appears from the evidence that the solider was trapped in the cave when the roof fell in. Along with the remains of his body, archaeologists discover his weapons, armour and a bag of personal possessions.

The archaeologists need the help of our historical experts at Birchwood Grove who work hard to find out what happened to this solider. The experts discover that the hoplite fought in the 'Battle of Thermopylae', which led to a defeat of the Spartan army. This may have led the hoplite to retreat and hide in the cave. A drama company would like to investigate the new evidence and demonstrate the story in a reenactment.

Our experts are on hand to research and take part in the reenactments of different areas of Ancient Greek life. 

Click here to see our 'Help At Home' page.

Click here to see our Ancient Greek homework grid. 

Click here to see our Spelling homework grid for Spring 2.

Spring Term

Twist and Shout!

What's your favourite ride? Which fairground ride would you like to go on most? Year 5 and 6 are asked to review different rides for the Rotation Appreciation Ring's website (RAR). 

Albert, who has been running a fairground since 2016, has read some negative reviews about his rides on the website. To help his fairground be successful he wants to introduce some brand new rides in 2017. He needs to have plans, models and descriptions of the ride so they can be made for when the fairground begins travelling around the country; its first stop will be Burgess Hill. 

Our teams will need to submit their plans, models and descriptions by the end of this half term - so we will need to get going! There is lots to learn - like how to build a circuit with a motor to create the rotation movement or how to keep on budget with building the ride. 

Hopefully, our rides will make it into Albert's fairground when it visits Burgess Hill in 2017. 

Click here to see our Twist and Shout parent overview. 

Click here to see our 'Twist and Shout' homework grid.

Click here to see our spelling grid for Spring term 1.

Click here to see our 'Help At Home' page.

Autumn Term

Storms and Shipwrecks

A dangerous storm has led to a message in a bottle being washed up on the shore. Year 5 and 6 classes open the message and read what it says. They discover that a castaway has been shipwrecked on a desert island.

Who could this message belong to? Is this message old? Which ship were they on? How will they survive shipwrecked by themselves? We have so many questions about the bottle and decide to research shipwrecks around the world.

We are inspired by Michael Morpugo's "The Wreck of the Zanzibar" and start creating a fictional character for the castaway. A publishing house has heard about the castaway and contacts us to find out who we think this character is. They like our ideas for a castaway story and we are commissioned to write fictional stories based on the character's shipwreck. 

Click here to see our Storms and Shipwrecks Parent Overview.

Click here to see our 'Storms and Shipwrecks' homework grid.

Click here to see our spelling grid for Autumn term 2.

Click here to see our 'Help At Home' page.


Bear Sanctuary 

"High in the mountains, in a tiny village, an abandoned bear cub is adopted by a lonely orphan child. Soon they are the best of friends, beloved by the whole village – safe, until the arrival of a glamorous film crew who need a dancing bear…"

Michael Morpugo's "The Dancing Bear"


We begin the new year by reading this wonderful story by Michael Morpugo about the friendship between a bear cub and an orphan child. This story provides a wonderful context for becoming an experienced team who help Roxanne (the child from "The Dancing Bear") set up bear sanctuaries to rehabilitate many injured and abused bears before returning them to the wild. The team prides itself on maintaining as a natural an environment as possible within the sanctuary, monitoring closely the levels of human intervention. 

The team will need to set up their new bear sanctuary for European brown bears and ensure their safety. They will be commissioned by the police to accompany them to a Roma community in rural Serbia. The police have evidence that a bear is being kept in captivity as a dancing bear. Many pressures, including poverty, war, lack of opportunity and a desire to maintain dying traditions, have led the community to keep the bear dancing, despite the practice being illegal. The Bear Sanctuary team is asked by the police to take full responsibility for the welfare of the bear.


Click here to see our topic planning. 

Click here to see our homework grid.

Click here to see our spelling grid for Autumn term 1.

Click here to see our 'Help At Home' page.