St. Thomas More

Catholic Voluntary Academy

Newstead Road, Leicester Leicestershire LE2 3TA

0116 2706365 | @STMleicester

This week's homework is in Class Dojo.


After the half term holiday, we're off to the exciting continent of South America, learning about its countries, climate, the people and, of course, the Amazon Basin with it's incredible rainforest!

Our new class reading book is directly connected to that theme: "Journey to the River Sea" by Eva Ibbotson. Set in 1910, not long after the end of the Victorian period, we follow the adventures of Maia as she leaves London and heads for South America to start a new life...

We shared chapter 1 of the book in class on the Friday afternoon before the half term holiday.  If you missed it, or would like to read it again, you can do so by clicking here.

Here's a summary of what we we'll be learning about...


Our 'New Life' R.E. topic has focused on how Jesus' Resurrection brought hope and opportunities for a new start into our lives and we learned about how Peter and John, filled with the Holy Spirit, were able to begin building the Christian Church as they spread the Good News of Jesus' teachings. 

We finished our topic by talking about Saul, who became Paul.  As Saul, he hated Christians and was cruel to them with his words and actions.  Christians were scared of him. 

After Jesus appeared to Saul, his views changed, he changed his name to Paul and he became one of the most important missionaries in the early Christian Church, spreading the Good News around many Mediterranean countries.  Paul had begun a 'new life', but sharing the Good News was not always an easy task. He wrote many letters to the people that he visited, including this one to the people of Corinth in Greece about his 'new life': 

As a class, we've been thinking about how we can bring 'New Life into Our Lives' and have been thinking about how we can use the Gifts of the Holy Spirit (including courage, understanding, reverence, wisdom and knowledge) to help us when we have problems with friendships at school.  We talked about how ignoring things that upset us or retaliating to get our own back can often make things worse. 

Instead, we're going to try telling the person who is being unkind to stop, explain to them how their behaviour is making us feel and that they have no right to do that.  The other person may not even realise how sad they are making us feel and, in time, will reflect on their actions and start to change their behaviours.  It could be the start of a 'New Life in Our Lives', making us all feel happier, stronger and more confident.

For homework, we made posters to express our thoughts on the subject.  All are below in three slide shows (Felipe and Sebastian also produced excellent posters, but asked that their posters were not included on the website - their wishes, as always, have been respected). Great work, everyone!


We did it!  We completed our Do-it-in-Style Mile on Thursday 15th April... in fact, many of us did much more than one mile!  Have a look at the photos below...

Well done to everyone and thank you to the parents who helped out too. 

Very importantly, we now need to collect in all the sponsorship money!  Please bring sponsorship forms with cash donations into school and/or share this link with your family and friends for online donations... thank you!



During Lent, we are all asked to reflect and prepare before Easter by giving. This could be giving something extra or giving something up.  This could be starting to do something for others that helps them or makes them happy, or stopping doing something that perhaps causes problems or unhappiness for others.

Chloe, Connie, Dolly, Felipe, Hugh, Lucio, Marco, Marie, Natalie, Otis, Patrick, Sammy, Sebby, Theo, Tom & Victor have shared their thoughts below...



Our brilliant book reviews!

To mark World Book Day, we have been writing reviews of books that we have thoroughly enjoyed and would recommend to others!  Have a look at what your classmates have enjoyed - you will probably enjoy them too!

If your book review isn't here yet, please email it to me or post it in Class Dojo!


Let's not forget our own class book, which has received rave reviews from all who have read it!...

Watch Anna tell her story...

Hear Dolly tell her story...

Watch Tom tell his story...


Year 4 & Year 5 - Mr Rowlinson





Welcome back!  Well done for all of your great work yesterday!

Zooms today are at 08:50 (Registration for those at home), 09:15, 11:00 and 14:30 for Celebration Assembly.  Zoom login details have been emailed home.

If your parents have not signed up for Class Dojo as yet, please can they use the information emailed to them from the y4y5 email address on Friday 12th February (a reminder was also sent yesterday). Thank you to all those who have done so already.

If you have any questions, please message me using Class Dojo, use the 'Help' shared blog in Purple Mash or email me at the y4y5 email address (this email address is being replaced by Class Dojo very soon).

A huge thank you to all the parents who have been supporting at home, plus our amazing TAs who have been working so hard in school to keep everything going so smoothly!  All your assistance is truly appreciated!

Wherever you are, please be kind to each other (this is a particularly challenging time for parents at home and adults in school), keep safe and have a great day!

Mr R.


Please read the following about how we should conduct ourselves in Zoom meetings and when using blogs and emails...


Let's start our day with a prayer, led by Marie...


Timings are those being used as a guideline in school

08:50 - 09:00


It's time to get our books, pens/pencils and paper ready, and read through the class webpage to see what we'll be doing today and when.  For those at home, we have Registration via Zoom at 09:00 (details have been emailed to parents).


09:15 - 10:15



Year 4 and Year 5 will be covering different work during the last few lessons in the fractions topic.

Year 4

L.I. To count in tenths (Year 4)

  1. Join the Zoom at 09:15 or watch the video linked here (I may have given you this video yesterday by mistake - sorry).
  2. Complete the worksheet linked here or in Class Dojo.
  3. Mark your own work using the answer sheet linked here.  Correct any mistakes.  Ask if you're unsure about anything (the Zoom will be running until 10:30).
  4. If you have time, have a go at these challenges:  Challenge 1   Challenge 2.  The answers are at the end of the two challenge sheets.

Year 5

L.I. To multiply non-unit fractions by an integer (Year 5)

  1. Join the Zoom at 09:15 or watch the video linked here.
  2. Complete the worksheet linked here or in Class Dojo.
  3. Mark your own work using the answer sheet linked here.  Correct any mistakes.  Ask if you're unsure about anything (the Zoom will be running until 10:30).
  4. If you have time, have a go at these challenges:  Challenge 1   Challenge 2.  The answers are at the end of the two challenge sheets.


Please make sure you know the key information about fractions below:

Download a copy of the above for reference here.

Download a copy of the above for reference here.

Download a copy of the fraction wall here.


Download a copy of the above for reference here.


Download a copy of the above for reference here.


Download a copy of the above for reference here.

Download a copy of the above for reference here.


Download a copy of the above for reference here.


10:15 - 10:40


10:40 - 10:55



11:00 - 11:50



L.I. To use imperative verbs and adverbs to write effective sentences

We are writing a holiday brochure for a favourite destination.  This could be one that you've already been to or one that you would like to visit.

Today's lesson:

In today's lesson, we will use imperative verbs and adverbs to write about adventurous activities in a holiday brochure.

Today's lesson slides:  PowerPoint    PDF.


Thursday's lesson:

In Thursday's lesson, we will be using symbolism and relative clauses to write about interesting sights in a holiday brochure.

Today's lesson slides:  PowerPoint  PDF.


Tuesday's lesson:

On Tuesday, we focused on using adjectives, verbs and adverbs to describe local foods and eating out in Sicily. 

Tuesday's lesson slides:  PowerPoint   PDF.

Write your eating out part for the brochure in the Sicily holiday brochure shared blog in Purple Mash.

After adding to the Sicily blog, you can write the eating out part of your own holiday brochure.  Write your work in the Your holiday brochure shared blog in Purple Mash.



Monday's lesson:

On Monday, we used similes, metaphors and personification to describe the weather in a holiday brochure.

Monday's lesson slides: PowerPoint  PDF.

Write your work in the Sicily holiday brochure shared blog in Purple Mash.

After adding to the Sicily blog, you can write the overview part of your own holiday brochure.  Write your work in the Your holiday brochure shared blog in Purple Mash.



Features of a persuasive text:


12:00 - 13:00


13:00 - 13:30



... and then ...

After lunch, as usual, it's time to read your own book. 

... followed by ...

The Train to Impossible Places by P.G. Bell. continues next week.  If you've got behind, then now is the time to catch up!

Suzy, Frederick, Stonker and Ursel have been captured by Lord Meridian and Captain Neoma.  But it seems that Lord Meridian may not be the good guy that we thought he was.  As this news starts to sink in, intruders have just arrived at the Ivory Tower... it's Lady Crepuscula and she may not be on her own...   

If you've missed any recent chapters, catch up here: ch.28  ch.29  ch.30


... followed by ...

Continue to take part in some of the World Book Day activities that you'll find near the top of our class webpage.  You can work on them at home as well over the next few days. 

Please share your work in Class Dojo, just like Marco and Victor have!


13:30 - 14:30

L.I. To describe the key characteristics of the Congo

This afternoon, we are continuing our Geography topic: rainforests.

Global biomes are large-scale ecosystems named after their main type of vegetation. These environments are not just known for the plants that live there but also their unique mix of animals.  Rainforests are one type of biome.

Today we will be thinking about the following questions:

  • Where is the Congo Rainforest?
  • What else shares a name with the Congo?
  • What plants, animals and people live in the Congo Rainforest?
  • Do all rainforests have the same features?
  1. Log into Oddizzi by clicking here.  Your username is STMYEAR45 and password is stmyear45.
  2. Find out about the Congo rainforest by clicking here.  Complete the two worksheets attached here and here or in Class Dojo.


14:30 - 14:50


It's the end of the week and it's time to...

Let's join Mrs Crosse for our 'live' Zoom Celebration Assembly!


We'll end the week with Anna leading us in prayer...






To round off any day, or do at any time when you need to burn off some energy...

It's important that we keep active whilst we're at home, so Mr Gowan has provided helpful resources to keep us fit over the coming weeks!

 My Lockdown Fitness Log.pdfDownload
 STM Home Fitness 30 letter.pdfDownload
 Year 4 Daily fitness 30 workout 1.pdfDownload
 Year 5 Daily fitness 30 workout 1.pdfDownload
Showing 1-4 of 4

On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, we can join Joe Wicks leading us in

P.E. with Joe

and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, the Briars' team are keeping us physically and spiritually fit as we join them doing 

P.E. with Jesus


The last Science lesson...

L.I. To understand the impact of gears, levers and pulleys on forces

Our Science topic for this term is Forces and Magnets.  So far, we have defined what a force is and discovered the differences between contact and non-contact forces.  We've also learned how to measure the size of forces using a Newton meter and that forces are measured in Newtons.

Before the Half Term holiday, we discussed air and water resistance and examined what balance and unbalanced forces are. We also investigated friction. Following that, we investigated gravity and gravitational force and learned about Galileo by completing an investigation. Additionally, we have been learning about magnetic force, including some uses for magnets.

In the last lesson, we discussed upthrust (or buoyancy) in more detail. We learned what density is and how it affects floating. We also discussed the link between weight and upthrust. 

In this lesson, we will first aim to understand the purpose of simple machines. We will then focus on gears, levers and pulleys to find out how they work and how they can be useful. We will also complete some questions throughout the lesson which will help us check our understanding.

Click here to join the lesson.  Click here for some more on BBC Bitesize.

To finish off, here are some more videos to watch about gears, levers and pulleys:

How the Egyptians built the pyramids

Machines were created to make people’s lives easier and reduce the physical effort needed for particular jobs. You will see examples of this in the following film.

Did you know...?

Cycling to school

Learn how gears make cycling uphill easier.


True or False?

The last Music lesson...

L.I. To improvise rhythmic patterns and improvise within a piece of music

This afternoon, we have two lessons as we continue our Rhythm topic.

In the first lesson, you are going to begin to clap rhythmic patterns in a call and response pattern. You are going to learn what improvising means and how to create a rhythmic improvisation pattern. You will also revisit our song and make up some body percussion patterns to fit the pulse.

Click here to join the lesson.

In the second lesson, you will review the term 'improvise' and return to the song 'Step Back Baby' to improvise and create a rhythmic backing. You will learn a new 'call and response' song from Ghana and complete a quiz.

Click here to join the lesson.


The last History lesson...

Our History topic for this term is Ancient Civilisations.  We will be studying Ancient Sumer, the Indus Valley, Ancient Egypt (this will have a much bigger focus after Easter) and the Shang Dynasty of China.

We have started learning about an ancient Chinese civilisation called the Shang Dynasty.  We have already found out how ancient artefacts and writing, uncovered by archaeologists, have helped us learn about the Shang.  We have also learned about Emperor Tang and how the Shang Dynasty began.

Before the Half Term break, we found out what life was like for different people living in the Shang Dynasty. We discovered the food they ate, the jobs they had, and how society was structured.  Additionally, we learned all about the belief systems of the Shang, including how they worshipped their ancestors. We learned about the supreme god Shangdi, and how the priests used Oracle bones to try and speak to the spirits of their ancestors.

If you would like a short recap of what we have learned so far, watch the video linked here.

L.I. To understand the impact of the Shang Dynasty and how it ended

In this lesson, we will be learning all about the cruel and terrible King Zhou, and how the Shang Dynasty came to an end in ancient China.

Click here to take part in the lesson.  



The last Art lesson...

L.I. To express yourself through art

As part of Children's Mental Health Awareness Week, watch the video below and then 'express yourself' in art. 

If you would rather create a general poster on the theme of 'Express Yourself', that's fine too.  What do you like doing to relax and unwind?  What do you think is important to keep your mental health in good shape?  Take a look at the Mental Wellbeing page on the school website for more ideas, resources and activities.

Please email your finished masterpieces to me at the y4y5 email address.  Have fun expressing yourself!


The last Computing lesson...

Today, we have an opportunity to do something completely different that will teach most of you a new skill and allow you to be very creative!

We all have our favourite animation films, but animation has probably been around for longer than you think.  Watch the video below to see some of its history. 

Animation is described as a ‘process by which we see still (non-moving) pictures move'.  Each individual picture is shot on film one at a time.  The pictures are shown at the rate of 24 pictures per second, which makes the pictures appear to move.

Our brain holds onto an image for a fraction of a second after the image has passed. When our eyes see a series of images very quickly, one after the other, our eyes cannot cope with fast-moving images, so they are tricked into thinking that the images are moving.

If the images you are seeing change in some way, you see this as animation.

The video below explains how animation works.

One of the earliest forms of animation used flick books or flip books.  You may remember that Paulo made one and showed it to us last term.  Have a look at the one in the video below as an example.

Most of the images for animations today are created using computers. You can use 2Animate in Purple Mash to create both simple and more complex animations.  This morning, you are going to have a go at making your own animation.  

I have set you two 2Animate 2Dos in Purple Mash.  Follow the instructions linked here to help you.  Below is my attempt at an animation of a plant growing from a seed.  Have a practice with this task and then create your own with the second 2Do task.  Over to you...!





As we can't read our copies of First News in school, click here to read this week's packed edition and also have a go at the puzzles!




Finley's amazing sketches (click on them to see larger images)...


Our creative team: Anna, Dolly, Felipe, Hannah, Hugh, Lucio, Marco, Olivia, Patrick, Sebby, Theo, Tom and Victor...


The authors of our Codes of Conduct for an apostle of Jesus: Chloe, Evelyn, Felipe, Hugh, Lucio, Marco, Olivia, Otis, Sammy, Theo, Tom and Victor...



Tucking in to Christmas dinner...


On Thursday 17th December, we went back in time as we celebrated Victorian Day in school.  We sampled school life, parlour games, a Victorian tea party and some outdoor games, plus dressed up for the occasion!

Click here to see photos and videos from the day!


The children have been writing and practising a 'Stop bullying' rap over the last few weeks with Mrs Burbela.  It was time for the final performance this week!  With the Covid restrictions, we could not rehearse in school.  Instead, we had two practices outside before making the recording you can enjoy below!  Well done, everyone!


P.E. information

Our P.E. days are Monday and Thursday.  Please come to school wearing the correct kit (not school uniform) as we will no longer be getting changed for P.E.

Homework is set on Fridays and should be completed by the following Tuesday.  If this is not possible on any particular week, please can parents let me know at the email address below.

If you have forgotten your login details, please email 

and I will send them to you.



Practise your reading comprehension skills once per week using Read Theory.


Please read, preferably with an adult, for at least 10 minutes every day.  Talk about what you have read and update your Reading Record.  Bring your Reading Record to school every Tuesday so that we can share what you have been reading.



We're all in this together at STM!      We're all in this together at STM!      We're all in this together at STM!

Catch up with the team at the Briars on the ndcys live YouTube channel....


Grammar and Punctuation links

Mathematics links

Please visit our Physical Education page for Active Anita and our new Virtual Athletics Challenge.

Round 4 challenge.

Do you want to walk for charity like Captain Tom?

Lap for NHS FLyer

LC and SL Sponsorship Form NHS (1).pdf


Letter to go to Parents.pdf


Learn the spellings below for a test on Thursday.  Practise for 10 minutes every day.  If you learn your spellings the night before the test, you will have forgotten most of them a day or two after the test, so please practise a little and often!

In the event of you having to self-isolate whilst the rest of the class is in school, use the links in the document below to start initial lessons at home.  I will email with resources for lessons that have no links and, where possible, with details of lessons that are going on in school.  You will appreciate that there may be a delay before I am able to get in touch, so please be patient. 

Thank you. 

Mr Rowlinson

Read the next part of Clockwork by Philip Pullman. 

Read the text here

Then, answer the questions which are linked here or can be found in Class Dojo.  Answer questions fully, using evidence from the text when requested.


Our cast of main characters, so far...

  • Putzi - the tavern cat
  • The tavern's landlord
  • Gretl - the tavern landlord's daughter
  • Herr Ringelmann - the clockmaker
  • Karl - the clockmaker's apprentice
  • The Burgomaster - town mayor
  • Fritz - the writer and storyteller
  • Prince Otto
  • Princess Mariposa
  • Florian - the son of Prince Otto
  • Baron Stelgratz - a friend of Prince Otto
  • Dr Kalmenius - an expert at powering things by clockwork
  • Sir Ironsoul - the mysterious figure from Dr Kalmenius' sledge

Today, we return to our whole-class reading book, Clockwork by Philip Pullman. 

Before the half term holiday, we completed Part Two of the book.  Today, we will start reading Part Three and then answer some comprehension questions. 

Please take your time with these questions and answer them as fully as you can.

Today's resources:  Story   Questions

Please send me your completed question sheets using Class Dojo. 

Download this week's Look, say, cover, write, check sheet here.