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22.05.20 Update


Good afternoon Zebra Class.


Apologies for the update being later than usual. I'm in with the key worker children today, as well as preparing for a potential return for some of our children after half term. For those of you who may be returning, you should have been sent details of which group you will be in yesterday. As much as I would like to have my whole class back, this is simply not possible at this time.


There are videos up on Facebook about what the return will look like. Please have a look at these because they will help to keep you safe. Unfortunately, anybody who does return will not be doing so under normal circumstances. The conditions which we will need to impose in order to keep people safe may come across as severe, but safety needs to be our highest priority at the moment. It will mean that school will be far from a normal experience, but the staff at Barley Close will endeavour to make it as worthwhile as they can.


D Moore

21.05.20 Update


Good Morning Zebra Class.


It has been suggested that we give SeeSaw a try as a potential home-learning platform, so I've sent out connection details via ClassDojo. I'm not overly familiar with SeeSaw, so I would appreciate any feedback you have.


I realise that some of you will be thinking that there isn't much time left to use it, but it's important to note that the return on the 1st is still a proposed date rather than a confirmed one, so in theory it could still be some time before most of us return to school. There are also children who will not be returning to school on the 1st even if a phased return is starting, and it will be important to continue home-learning provision for these children.


D Moore

20.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Thank you very much to those of you who have already let the school know what their intentions are regarding the proposed return to school on June 1st. If you haven't done so, please don't forget to let the school know, as it will help us to keep the children safe.


Those of you who will be coming back, I want to give you fair warning now. I'm going to want to talk books. I'll want to know what you've been reading, and menus on the Playstation don't count. I'm sure most of you have been reading anyway, but if, for some unfathomable reason, you haven't, you'd better get started.


Just to be clear, despite the education secretary implying otherwise on yesterday's briefing, teachers are currently working, just as they have been throughout this crisis. What this means for you is that if you need any help you should be getting in touch because we are here to help you wherever we can. The easiest way to do this is via ClassDojo, but you could go via the school office and they will be able to pass on a message. Obviously, when children return to school it may take longer for us to get back to you, but we still will.


Look after yourselves.


Mr Moore

19.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Many of you will be aware of the governments intention to re-open schools to children in year 6 at the start of next term. Everybody's circumstances are different, meaning that some parents have opted to send their children back in from this date while others have decided to keep them at home. As a parent, you will not be penalised or judged for either decision, however, it is important that the school knows what the decision is so that we can have an idea of numbers and prepare adequately, as this is obviously not opening under ordinary circumstances. For this reason, could those of you who have made a decision please let the school know. Some of you have already done this, and I thank you for your swift response. It is also worth noting that you are allowed to change your mind one way or the other. We simply want to have a good idea of how many children to expect.


As a result of this proposed wider opening of schools, next Monday will mark what is probably the last Monday group chat (because I, and some of you will be in class instead). With this in mind, it would be great if we could have as many people as possible this time around.


Mr Moore

15.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I'm afraid this update will have to be a brief one, as I am in with the keyworker's children today.


I just wanted to take a moment to say that there is a lot of information on social media about the potential phased re-opening of schools. Not all of this information is reliable. As soon as the school knows more, they will let you know as well. Try not to believe everything that you read, and keep looking after yourselves and each other.


Mr Moore

14.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I realise that at the moment there is a huge amount of speculation about a possible return to school at the start of next term. The reason I have put possible in bold, is because we don't know for certain whether it is happening yet. It has been proposed, and it may come to pass, but it is also possible that any return to school would be later than that.


I also want to be clear that if we do end up back at school at the start of next term, it will not be as you remember it. Social distancing rules will apply, meaning that each child would have their own desk, two metres apart. This, in turn, means that we wouldn't all be in the same classroom, and social distancing has implications on things like lunch and playtimes and when you come to school and leave. There's also the possibility that some parents will choose not to send their children in at this stage, a decision which they will not be penalised for.


Now while this might all sound like I'm feeling a bit full of doom and gloom this morning, I'm just trying to ensure that our expectations are in line with reality. For better or worse, it appears that 'normal' is still a way off, regardless of whether we are back at school or not. Keep doing work at home for now, and I will let you know if I get any extra information but to be honest, it's largely a case of watching the news.


Mr Moore

12.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


You may have noticed that I've started putting more content on the Class Story section of Class Dojo. This is because, for some technical reason that I don't fully understand, my videos don't seem to be able to upload to the school's YouTube channel. The best way to get what you want, is to interact with this content regularly. That means that if you enjoy something you should be liking it or commenting on it to let me know, otherwise I'll think it was a flop and you won't get more like it. If I post a question, you should be posting an answer. I can see who has looked and done nothing and it's a fair number of you. Help me to help you.


Unfortunately, our shared write project is dead in the water. Not a single person sent in an entry this week, so it can't go forward. It's a real shame because I was really enjoying reading the writing that got sent in on previous weeks.


I know that some of you will be wanting clarity about exactly when we will return to school and what that will look like, but I'm afraid I can't give you that at the moment. Nothing is currently set in stone and lots of people who are far more important than me are arguing the fine details, but the school will let you know when they know.


Mr Moore

11.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Unfortunately, you all seem to have gone very quiet on me. I have had no entries for the shared writing, no entries for the caption competition and no messages for Giraffe Class. I realise that this is a difficult time for everybody but showing a complete lack of engagement is not going to help anybody. From the look of it, you've all had (at least) the last four days off. Time to do some work, I'm afraid.


I know that many of you will be aware that the Prime Minister's 'guidance' for the next stage of social distancing is currently being discussed by more or less everybody. There is some confusion as to exactly what parts of it mean, but the clearest part of any of it is that all of the steps he discussed are conditional, meaning that they aren't supposed to happen if the rate of infection worsens. This means that while he did discuss the possibility of Year 6 children (as well as Year 1 and reception children) returning to school at the start of next term, this is not set in stone. I want us all to be clear on that fact so that if it does not come to pass, we are not crestfallen.


As always, the weekly group chat will take place at 11:00 am today for one hour. Details will be sent out just before it begins via ClassDojo.


Mr Moore

07.05.20 Update


Miss Beard and I decided that it would be nice to have a bit of interaction between the classes, so you will notice that we have a competition involving both classes, as well as a more co-operative task on the Year 6 page today. Remember that some of the children in the other class may well be your classmates next year. Also, I know a number of you have found things difficult at one popint or another throughout this process. The same will be true of them, so make sure your messages are kind ones. See it as an opportunity to spread cheer and goodwill among your peers (Also, your messages go through me so if you accuse somebody in the other class of being a smelly poo head I'm simply not going to pass it on).


I've not had any submissions for the shared write yet, which is a bit troubling. If I don't get any, we may just have to call it off. There was lots of interest at first but it's been dropping off steadily.


Mr Moore

Good morning Zebra class,


I've had a few children in the last week or so tell me that they are having a bad day, that they feel low or that they are getting incredibly bored. I know that some of you are finding this harder than others. That's natural, because we all have slightly different circumstances. Cast your minds back to before all this began and think carefully, I mean really carefully. Did you ever have days like that back then? I know that I certainly did. It's okay to find things difficult. It's okay to take some time to do something for you, now more than ever.


If you really can't face another day of writing and you think that a day vegetating on the Playstation will get you out of your funk, do it. If you know that another maths worksheet is going to make you feel like you want to cry, take a break and do something else. Bake a cake or watch a film or read a book (easy ones are fine too) or play a game with your siblings or chat to your friends on Zoom. Yes, it's important to do some learning, but the most important thing, and I really can't stress this enough, is to look after your wellbeing.


Mr Moore

05.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Speaking to some of you yesterday, it seems that boredom is becoming a big problem for some children. The key to finding ways to alleviate that boredom is to be creative. Try to do something that you've never done before, such as cooking a new food, reading the kind of book that you would normally avoid (you never know; you may end up liking it) or building a tank for a cat (pictured below. Yes, Mr Moore gets bored too).


Do whatever you can to keep yourselves occupied, and if you can make it something constructive too, all the better.


D Moore

Shared Writing 04.05.20


There were only a few entries this week. Fortunately, one of them was particularly good so that's our winner. However, if I don't get more entries then it may not be worthwhile continuing, so please have a go at it this week.


The pounding on the door brought an abrupt end to Henry’s musings.

“We have to get out of here,” he said, panic setting in.

“Yes, we need to get to the city of Rattay,’ his father said, ‘so that we can prepare for the journey.’

‘What journey?’ said Henry, irritated. ‘I meant that we need to get out of here because there is a group of bandits trying to knock our door down.’

‘Oh, that,’ said his father. ‘Not to worry, I’ve prepared for that.’

He walked over to his bed and picked up one end, dragging it out into the middle of the room. Underneath, was a trap door with a heavy iron ring set into it. While Henry stood there, stunned, his father opened the trap door and began to climb down a ladder.

‘Well,’ he said. ‘Are you coming or not?’

Henry followed his father down the ladder. It took him down, by Henry’s estimate, around 20 feet. It was hard to tell because the climb was dark. As he reached the bottom, his  father lit a torch on a sconce on the wall, and then used it to light another in his hand, before passing it to Henry. With a torch each, Henry surveyed the room, and realised that they were in a tunnel that ran through the hill upon which Skallitz stood. The tunnel was roughshod, but functional. There was a table near the base of the ladder. On it, were two dark, hooded robes, a sword in an intricately designed scabbard which was clearly his father’s handiwork, a dagger which appeared to be of a similar quality to the sword, and a very large pouch. Henry’s father put on the larger of the two robes before offering the other to his son. He then took the sword, attaching it to his belt, before encouraging that Henry do the same with the dagger. Finally he picked up the pouch, and Henry heard the clinking within.

‘Is that gold?’ he asked.

‘Yes. We’ll need it when we get to Rattay. We will have to get proper provisions for the journey. It might not be a bad idea to hire a mercenary to accompany us. Could be dangerous.’

‘What journey?’ asked Henry, following his father down the tunnel, making out the faintest glimmer of moonlight at the end. ‘Where are we going?’

‘Well, firstly to Rattay…’

‘But after that?’ Henry asked.

‘To the East. We need to go to Gloomwood.’

‘Gloomwood? Are you mad? Everybody knows the stories. The Elves despise humans. Any man who steps foot in that forest is never seen again!’

‘Well then,’ said his father, ‘I suppose it’s just as well that we aren’t men, isn’t it?’

04.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


You have only a few hours in which to get your shared writing entries to me if you want them to be considered for this week's part of the story.


Today we will, as we do every Monday, have a group chat. Hopefully there will be a special guest, so if you haven't been able to make the last few, it might be worth joining today if you can. I'll send out the details just before 11:00 as I always do on ClassDojo.


Mr Moore

01.05.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I'm afraid this update will be a brief one, as I am in school today with children of key workers and they will start to arrive soon.


I've had my first couple of submissions for the next part of the story and I have to say that they are very well-written. You have until Monday to send me yours if you want it to be considered.


Take care of yourselves.


Mr Moore

30.04.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Some of you may be aware that slightly more information about schools re-opening was offered by the government yesterday. Unfortunately, this has caused many journalists to speculate and call their guesswork news. I want to be very clear that we still do not know when schools will be re-opening. If somebody is telling you that they do know, they do not. What we learned yesterday was that it would be 'phased,' meaning that not all children would be going back to school at the same time. No details were offered on what this would actually look like, so once again, if somebody tells you that they know, they don't. The important thing for us is to keep on doing what we are already doing. Looking after ourselves and trying to ensure that we do some learning at home.


Speaking of which, I haven't had any submissions for the shared story so far this week. I'm hoping that's because people are putting lots of time into polishing their offerings.


Look after yourselves.


Mr Moore

29.04.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Over the last couple of days I've spoken to a few children and parents who are beginning to find things more difficult. The're getting bored more than anything else. However, they all had something in common. When I asked them how much interaction they were having with people outside their home, they were all having very little.


It's really important that we find ways to interact with people beyond our home (while observing social distancing rules). Luckily, technology helps us with that a great deal. Phone calls, texting, Skype, Zoom, online gaming, etc. There are a number of ways in which you can have contact with friends. I do a quiz with a bunch of mine once a week. We used to go out for it before the lockdown, now we do it over Zoom. 


It helps. Even if you feel that you don't need that interaction, it can help the other people that you're having contact with.  At this time, the most important thing we can do is think about well-being, both ours and other people's. With that in mind, I have a little task for you.


Reach out to somebody you know. Call up a classmate, organise a group chat, get a game going on Playstation Network and invite your friends. I don't mind how you do it. Bonus points if it's somebody that you haven't spoken to since before the lockdown.


Stay safe. Look after yourselves.


Mr Moore

28.04.20 Update


Good morning Zebra class.


It was amazing to talk to some of you yesterday in the weekly group chat. Next week, I believe we'll be having a new member who hasn't been on before.  I wonder if you can work out who it will be? I might drop some clues in the daily updates as we get closer.


Congratulations to a certain child that I won't name, for writing the next part of our shared story. We now have a week in which people can decide how they want things to progress and submit their entries on ClassDojo. Remember, you are writing the next part of the story, not the ending. Some of you were rushing to the finish last week. Also try to think about the quality of your writing. There, their and they're need to be correct. You need to be using punctuation correctly. You used to do this when you were given half an hour to write. When you get a week, there's plenty of time to check your work. It's also important to try to leave some elements open for the next writer. The one that won this week did so because it didn't force the next writer into a particular direction.


Keep looking after yourselves. Stay safe.


Mr Moore

Shared Writing


I had a number of high quality entries for the next part of the story. It was very hard to choose the best one. However, I have reached a decision:


The following night a storm broke through Skallitz. Henry was jolted awake by his father who was crouched over Henry’s thin straw mattress with a panicked expression and fear in his eyes.
“Hurry! We don’t have much time,” he panted, grabbing Henry tightly by the arm and pulling him towards the cellar.
“What’s going on?” Henry asked, before a blood-curdling shriek from outside cut through his nerves and made him shudder. Henry’s father glanced towards the door which Henry now noticed had been barricaded with some of his father’s heaviest blacksmith tools. A heavy banging followed from the distance. Henry dreaded to think what chaos was disrupting his tiny village, just on the other side of the door.
The pair stumbled down the rickety stairs into the gloomy and now eerily quiet cellar. Henry watched in confusion as his father frantically ran his large hands over the far brick wall. As he reached the top right corner, his fingers closed around one of the bricks which Henry now noticed was a lighter shade of red than the others and stuck out just a little more. His father clumsily slid the brick out from the wall allowing it to thud onto the floor, just missing his toes. He reached into the empty space and pulled out a folded piece of parchment, handing it to Henry.
Henry carefully opened the paper, curious to finally see what secrets his father had been hiding. Instead of writing, as Henry had expected, the parchment was actually a painting of three people. He recognised the man shown as a younger image of his father, his beard a darker shade of brown rather than the grey he knew now. His father held a baby, which Henry assumed to be himself, but what was strange was the mysterious woman stood beside them, one pale hand resting on Henry’s infant head. She was beautiful, with long golden hair that seemed to glow and twinkling blue eyes, which were the exact same shade as Henry’s. Stranger still were the pointed ears and glittering wings that both the woman and Henry’s father had.
Henry’s father broke the silence, “I have some explaining to do.”

This one did a brilliant job of taking the tone of the original and running with it, not rushing forward at break neck speed, and leaving plenty for future chapters.


Now we need to get writing for next Monday.

Update 27.04.20


Good morning Zebra Class.


As some of you may be aware, I finally got around to adding a video to the Barley Close Youtube channel. I am sorry that it took so long but I encountered some technical difficulties. If you haven't checked it out yet, that's almost 8 minutes of your day already sorted!


I do plan to make more videos, but my next one is not going to be reading a book but teaching a vital life skill. This one needs a bit of preparation but I'm hoping to have it up at some point this week.


As usual, the weekly group chat will take place from 11:00 until 12:00. I will send out the details just before 11:00 on ClassDojo. There have been some notable absences in the last couple of weeks. If one of your friends hasn't been making it on, get in touch with them and see if you can persuade them to come on today.


I'll speak to some of you in about three and a half hours.


Take care.


Mr Moore

Update 23.04.20


I'm afraid I have been put in a very difficult position. The shared writing contributions that have come in have been great, but there are two in particular that are incredible and now I have to choose between them. It's like asking me if I want pringles or chocolate. No man should have to make that kind of choice.


Thanks to those who sent in their words for the word cloud yesterday. I'll be sharing that on Classdojo.


Please continue to send me your solutions for the countdown challenges. I'm especially interested to see if I've 'pulled a Mr Moore' on the numbers round, finding a needlessly convoluted way to get there, as I sometimes do.


For those of you who are going into school tomorrow, guess what? So am I. It's going to feel a bit strange because it's a while since I've actually been in.


Today I have a special task for you. Do something that will make somebody else happy. That's it. It could be helping your parents with the washing up, making something for somebody, doing something nice with a sibling, calling a friend you haven't spoken to for a while. Anything you like, as long as it makes somebody happy.


Keep looking after yourselves. 


Mr Moore

Update 22.04.20


Good Morning Zebra Class.


I've had a few more entries for our shared write. The standard is generally really good, but some of you need to re-visit there, their and they're. One in particular has really captured the authorial voice of the first, but has added dialogue to shift the pace up a bit. I wonder if anybody can do even better?


Remember to keep checking the year 6 page as there are new tasks going up on there every day. Make sure that you are doing what is right for you. If you and your parents/carers feel that you're doing too much work, take a break. Go out in the garden if you're lucky enough to have one, watch some television, play a board game. I've heard that some of you are even brushing up on your Smash Brothers skills, which is adorable but ultimately futile. You will never defeat me.


Mr Moore

21.04.20 Update


It was fantastic to speak to a fair number of you in the group chat yesterday, including somebody who hadn't made it on before. It's important that we all support each other by staying in touch at this unusual time.


I have had a few messages on ClassDojo asking for pictures of my furry lockdown companions, so I have obliged below. The one where I have a cat on my lap is from when we first got them. They are much bigger than that now.


I have received my first couple of entries for the next chapter of the shared writing story. I will be deciding which one to continue with on Monday, so please get them to me before then if you want yours to be the one that gets chosen.


There are lots of great learning opportunities, both from here and to be found on other websites. Don't feel that you have to do everything. That would be impossible. Do what is right for you and look after yourselves.


Stay safe.


Mr Moore

20.04.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I hope that you've all taken the time to have a bit of a break over the last two weeks, as well as eaten your own body weight in chocolate eggs. Some of you were in touch with classdojo over the break and that is absolutely fine. I'm free and available because, believe it or not, I haven't got a huge amount of places I need to be at the moment.


Despite several children asking for it, I've not had a single continuation of the shared write. I'm guessing that's because you were on a holiday of sorts, so I'll give it another week. If I don't get any responses though, it won't be possible to continue.


In terms of the current situation, please please please, don't believe everything that you read or hear on the news. A number of different news outlets ran with stories yesterday that were completely false about dates for when schools will re-open. The simple fact of the matter is that we do not know when schools will be re-opening, or what it will look like when they do. When we know more, we will tell you, but even the government has said that it's too early to think about a potential date.


While we wait for that information, the most important thing you can do is to look after yourselves and each other. While, as your teacher, I would love you to be engaging with learning, don't push yourself too hard. Do what is right for you, and make sure you are taking time to do things that you enjoy as well. Try to stick to a routine, especially with sleep. It helps.


The group chat will function as normal from 11-12 today. Details will be sent out on classdojo just before 11.


Mr Moore

06.04.20 Shared Writing Project


There has been some demand for this so I'm happy to give it a go and see if it works out. The basic concept is simple. I give you the start of a story. You then have some time in which you can write the next part of the story. It could be a few lines or a full blown chapter. You then send it to me via Classdojo. When the time is up, I'll choose my favourite and add it to the story and then we repeat the process. You will find the start of the story below, and seeing as this is actually holiday time, I'm going to say that you've got a whole week in which to  come up with the next part. It's entirely optional, so if you don't want to take part, you don't have to.


Henry’s world was small. He grew up in the modest settlement of Skallitz, a mining town according to some but town was perhaps too strong a word. There were silver mines but they were, like the town, small. Skallitz itself was comprised of two dozen or so houses, mostly inhabited by the miners and their families, a church, a tavern and a blacksmith. There was a market on Wednesdays. Henry’s father was the blacksmith and Henry couldn’t help but feel that he was far too good a smith to be living in an insignificant little hamlet like Skallitz. People travelled from far and wide to have weapons and armour made in Henry’s father’s forge. They complimented him on his lightweight, yet sturdy, armour and his fine swords. Henry had been caught playing with one of his father’s swords once, and his father had been furious.

‘What are you doing with that? Have you any idea how to use it? You could hurt yourself!’ bellowed Henry’s father.

‘I could learn how to use it. If you let me practise, I mean,’ Henry offered meekly.

‘What use could you possibly have for a sword? A commoner like you has no need of the skills of barons and lords. You’re a blacksmith’s son, in a peaceful village.’

‘Peaceful? Nothing ever happens here!’ shouted Henry, frustrated.

‘True enough, and preferable by far to the alternative. Trust me. You may have spent your whole life in Skallitz, but I haven’t. I’ve seen the world Henry, and it’s not always pretty. I chose to settle down here for a reason.’

Defeated for the moment, Henry placed the sword back in the rack, conceding that he could do nothing to improve his situation today. But soon, he thought, I’ll leave all this behind. Unfortunately, he was right. Soon enough, the raiders came and staying in Skallitz was no longer an option.


I've deliberately left some things open to your interpretation. Things to consider when writing the next part:

How old is Henry?

While it seems to take place in a medieval setting, is this a high fantasy story with mythical beasts and magic spells? Or more grounded and realistic?

Does Henry's father have a secret past that he doesn't want his son to know about?

Why have the raiders come to the village and what will the end result be?


Good luck all. Keep looking after yourselves.

02.04.20 update


Good morning Zebra Class.


Today, I will be beginning this week's phone calls to see how you're all getting on. It was great to talk to some of you last time and I'm looking forward to doing that again.


I'm also going to gauge people's responses to the idea of writing a chain story. It works like so:


1. I write the beginning of story.

2. I put it on a class page.

3. You can then try to write the next part of the story. It can be a long part or a short part.

4. You send your sections of the story to me on ClassDojo.

5. I read them all and choose my favourite.

6. I add that one to the existing story and post it on our class page.

7. Repeat steps 3-6.


I don't want to start it up if we're only going to have one or two children taking part, but I feel like if a few of us get behind this it could be really interesting.


Stay safe and look after each other.


Mr Moore

01.04.20 update


Good morning Zebra class.


A word of warning. It is not unusual for people to post bogus news stories online on the first of April as a joke. Please consider this if you are spending time online in the next few days, as you may well see things which are completely untrue but designed to get a big reaction. Don't fall for it, and certainly don't share dubious information with others. The spread of misinformation is usually annoying, but at this point, could be dangerous.


Look after yourselves. Stay safe.


Mr Moore

31.03.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I think it's safe to say that yesterday's class group chat was a resounding success. It was great to talk to those of you who could make it on. You seemed to be in high spirits, and making the absolute best of the situation which is all anybody could ask. If you didn't manage to make it on this time, fret not, there will be another next week.


I was pleased to hear that you are staying in touch with each other through the responsible use of technology, and that while you are all taking time to do some learning at home, that you're finding time to do other things as well. With that said, I know some of you have been taking the time to practise your Smash Brothers skills. You will never defeat me. Never.


D Moore

30.03.20 Update


Good morning Zebra Class.


I hope you've all enjoyed your weekends, and that you're all staying safe and well.


If you would like to take part in the first Zebra group chat, make sure that you are on ClassDojo just before 11:00am today, where the details will be given out.


D Moore

27.03.20 update


Good morning Zebra class.


I've managed to call most of the families of our class now and am pleased to say that I have, for the most part, found them to be doing very well. Children are engaging with learning that has been set by the school, as well as finding their own opportunities for learning, including more practical skills like cookery and gardening. Some of you have even managed to find time to get the really important things done, such as obstacle courses in the garden or saving the land of Hyrule from Calamity Ganon.


From what I've heard, you are doing all the right things. Keep on doing them. As a class, you are a fantastic example of how to compose yourself in a tricky situation.


While I won't necessarily be updating the class page at the weekend, if you need me, you know how to contact me. It might surprise you, but I haven't got a lot on this weekend.


D Moore

26.03.20 Update


Good morning Zebra class.


Yesterday, I was in school with the handful of children of key workers that are still coming in. I have to say, if this all feels a bit strange to you sat at home, it's no less strange in school.


I have started calling families just to check in and see how people are doing. Some people got a phone call yesterday, others will get one today or tomorrow. I'll try to make sure that everybody gets a call, either from myself or another member of staff, at least once a week.


As always, if you need anything from me, the best thing to do is get in touch via ClassDojo.


D Moore

24.03,20 update


Good morning Zebra class.


I would like to start by apologising for today's update being slightly later than intended. I had very good intentions but it has taken me some time to get the site to co-operate due to unprecedented levels of traffic. In some ways, this is good. It means that people are checking the website. Awesome. Also, a deeply comforting automated message informs me that server capacity is in the process of being upgraded in order to resolve this issue, so if you are having issues with the performance of the site at the moment, hang in there; it should get better soon.


With that said, I'm sure most of you are aware of the Prime Minister's announcement last night. Do not panic. If you were following social distancing procedures correctly before, there's really not a huge amount of change. If you weren't, it's time to start doing so.


For daily activities, keep checking the Year 6 page. Miss Beard and I will endeavour to have something for you to do on there every day. However, don't let us limit you. There's a whole world of learning opportunities online, many of them free. Read. You can never read too many books.  Make your own opportunities for writing. There are untold stories in the world all around us. How was it that the A-Team came to be in a military prison for a crime they didn't commit? Why do the toys in toy story freeze when people can see them and was this always the case?  Why do Mr Moore's cats insist in eating the big plant in the living room even though it makes them sick? There are countless untapped stories just waiting to be told.


But most of all, and this bit is really important, look after yourselves and your loved ones.  Stick to a routine. Go to bed at a reasonable time. Wake up at a reasonable time. Help your parents/carers where you can. Take time every day to reach out and interact with people (face time friends and family if you can). Above all, know that you can reach out to myself or the school. Feel free to contact me on ClassDojo, even if it's just to say hello. I assure you, I am not too busy to answer.

Shiny New Page


Those of you who are most observant may have noticed that there is a new class page that is simply called Year 6. The reason for this is that Miss Beard and I have decided that it makes sense to give all tasks for year 6 from the one page.  As a result, We will post tasks there and general updates on our own respective class pages. This way, we are all getting the same provision of tasks. 

Update 23.03.20


Good Morning Zebra class,


I hope that you are all well, despite the surreal situation that we find ourselves in. On Friday, those of you who were in school talked about the importance of having a routine when learning from home. It was fantastic that so many of you were able to come up with ideas to help this happen, and realistic targets. Don't forget to take breaks and, if you can, interact with your friends remotely. As promised, part of my routine will be updating our class page, Monday to Friday before 10:00 am. So, here is our first update.


I have posted one of our countdown maths puzzles and will continue to do so. I'm currently looking for a good place to source the word puzzles from too. For the moment, you'll get a new maths puzzle every day, and I will post answers in my update on the following day.


I have also added a little missing number challenge, using shapes in place of numbers. At the bottom, it asks if there is more than one way to solve it. So far, I've found that there is at least one. If you think you've found more than one, feel free to let me know through ClassDojo.


When it comes to writing, you have a number of tasks available to you from our home learning sheets that were sent home last week. However, I wanted to give you another option. Last week we were writing narratives in which we tried to cultivate tension and a real sense of atmosphere. I've stumbled upon a video that I think might inspire us to write our own tense tales, rather than emulating somebody else's. The video can be watched for free at


Don't forget the techniques that we used in our writing last week. Try to make use of passive voice, short sentences at key moments to control pacing and well-chosen vocabulary.


Also, keep reading. Books are awesome. On the subject of books, I've had a request from a parent to post a video of myself reading The Day The Crayons Quit on the school Youtube channel (obviously with the correct voice for Pink Crayon). I'll get on that just as soon as I can find a good way to record it. If you have other requests, let me know through ClassDojo. If I'm able to accomodate them, I will.


Look after yourselves. Be kind to each other. Wash your hands.


D Moore

Can anybody solve this one?

Answers tomorrow

Monday 23rd Countdown Maths Puzzle

Solutions will be posted tomorrow. I've found 2.

Something you may find useful...

For those who are staying at home.

Today in Zebra class we talked about how helpful it can be to have a routine. Children thought about when they would do things each day and how long they would be doing them for.


As a way of encouraging the children to keep to a routine, I have told them that I will be making an update of some sort to this class page every weekday before 10:00 am, starting Monday. This will include the number puzzles that they have enjoyed doing as an early morning activity each day, with the solution coming on the following day.


All families who are not connected on Classdojo have been sent another joining code this week (if their children were in school to receive it). If you haven't joined up already, please do. It's a fantastic way to be able to keep in touch, which is particularly important in the current circumstances. Those of you who are already connected, feel free to contact me with any concerns you have.


D Moore

An image of the active break wheel, for those who cannot download the PowerPoint.

You won't be able to spin this one

In times when some of you may be at home and in isolation for prolonged periods, it is important that we give the children the opportunity to stay healthy.


Please see below, the active breaks wheel that we use in Zebra class. These are all exercises that we have done in school, which require little to no equipment. If you are stuck for ways to exercise at home, feel free to download it and have your children explain the various exercises.

Active break wheel

Thank you to all parents who attended at one of our sessions this week. It's always fantastic to be able to communicate face to face with you about your children.


This week, zebra class have been looking at ways to create tension in their writing. They have been re-visiting fractions, decimals and percentages in maths. In science, we have been learning about the human heart.


Today, we were lucky enough to have an American football workshop.


This week, we were able to get to 96% of the children reading the required number of times. This is great, but we have shown in the past, more than once, that we are capable of getting 100%. Please encourage children to read at home.


The spellings to be learned for next Friday are:

Please learn the spellings and the meanings, as otherwise mistakes persist within writing.

This week, Zebra class have been learning about algebra in maths (and finding that it's not as scary as some of us previously thought) and writing a non-chronological report in English.


Our spellings for the test on 13.03.20 are:


After disagreeing with Mr Moore, Zebra class have made their own list of their top 100 children's books.

This week, Zebra class have continued to write narratives based on The Viewer. However, we have been setting ourselves the additional challenge of telling the story from viewpoints of multiple characters.


In maths we have been learning about area, perimeter and volume.


Our spellings for next week are:













Zebra class have been writing narratives based on The Viewer by Gary Crew and Shaun Tan. We have had a particular focus on dialogue and the ways in which it can convey character or move the plot forward.


A number of children from Zebra class represented Barley Close at a dodgeball tournament, playing incredibly well and getting through to the quarter finals.


Today, we were lucky enough to have visitors from the NSPCC, who delivered an assembly and a workshop with the children.


The spellings to be learned for 25.01.19 are:











As Term 2 draws to a close, the children of Zebra class have been learning about shape in Maths and making some shocking discoveries about Father Christmas while writing explanation texts in English.


Congratulations to our top six dojo earners for the term, who enjoyed coming the end of term breakfast, cooked for them by Mr Moore. Those who didn't manage to get themselves a place this term will have another chance next term.


Enjoy the break and come back ready to learn on 7th January 2020!

This week Zebra class have been learning about writing explanation texts as well as multiplying and dividing decimals.


The spellings for next week's test (13.12.19) are:



This week, children in both of the year 6 classes thoroughly enjoyed Food Friday, where we had halloumi with a variety of dips.


We have also been learning about circuits in science and dividing fractions in maths.


The spellings for next week's test (6.12.19) are:


This week the children have been learning about percentages in maths and writing poetry about the slave trade in English. They have also been learning about how to stay safe when using electricity.


The spellings for the test on 29.11.19 are:



Thank you to all parents and carers who came to parents evening this week.


Zebra class enjoyed their trip to the cinema today.


The next spelling test will take place on 22.11.19. The words to be practised are:












Thank you to all parents and carers who were able to make it to Zebra's class assembly. The children really appreciated having such an enthusiastic audience and were very proud to be able to share their learning experiences. While I would normally post what we have been getting up to this week, the assembly has probably given you a fairly clear idea.


The spellings for next week's test (Thursday 24/10/19) are:



Please don't forget that the Zebra class assembly is on Thursday 10th October 2019. We are looking forward to seeing some of the parents there.


This week we have been learning about how to write a balanced argument in English and learning about fractions in maths. We have also been learning about abstract art.


The spellings for next week's test  (18.10.19) are:



Thank you to all parents who have encouraged reading at home this week, as we have had our best week yet in this regard.


This week, Zebra class have been working on area and perimeter in maths and practising our narrative writing technique. In topic, we have been learning about the slave trade, while we have been learning about light in science.


The spellings for next week's test, which will be on Friday 11th October are:



This week Zebra class have enjoyed a fantastic trip to learn life skills.


We have been looking at expanded noun phrases and using challenging vocabulary in English. In maths we have been refreshing our multiplication and division skills.


Many children had clearly been practising their spellings at home this week, which is fantastic. Our spellings for next week's test are:













Please remember to encourage your child to read at least three times a week at home.

This week in English we have written a non-chronological report and even had a visit in class from a leopard gecko! In maths we have been learning about negative numbers, and times when they might affect us in the real world.


We are looking forward to our life skills trip next week.


Our spellings for this week are:



The test for these spellings will take place on Friday 27th September 2019.


Please remember to encourage your children to read a minimum of three times per week.

Welcome to the page for Zebra class.


As a new addition to Barley Close, I am looking forward to working with my class over the course of the next academic year. I look forward to working alongside Mrs Duggan and Mrs G, who will be supporting the children of Zebra class in their learning.


During term one, PE will take place on a Wednesday afternoon. Please ensure that children are wearing appropriate PE kit when they arrive at school on Wednesday. Swimming will take place on Thursday mornings, so children will need to bring appropriate swimwear and a towel. On these days, please ensure that long hair is tied back and that children are not wearing earrings.


I would appreciate your support in encouraging the children to read regularly (at least three times a week) at home. It will also be important for the children to practise their spellings at home ready for the spelling test on Fridays.


This term our class text will be Holes  by Louis Sachar, in which wrongly convicted Stanley Yelnats is sent to Camp Green Lake to dig holes in the blistering heat.

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  • Barley Close Community Primary School
  • Barley Close, Mangotsfield, Bristol
  • United Kingdom, BS16 9DL
  • Tel: 01454 867090
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