Patoka School

Room 3

Room 4

Our Year 5-8 students are in Room 3 and Mrs Lorentz is the classroom teacher.


UNIT OF INQUIRY – Week 1 – 3

From weeks 1 – 2 will be finishing our unit of inquiry from term two. This is an opportunity for students to finish their digiawards photo essay of their visual pepeha and complete our class tapa cloth. The pepeha was to link in with our understanding of the concept of Tūrangawaewae – A place to stand. Tūrangawaewae are the places where we feel especially empowered and connected. They are our foundation, our place in the world, our home.


UNIT OF INQUIRY – Week 4 – 10

This unit of inquiry will link with two different areas of the curriculum. It will have a science-based component and a technology component.

Science – We will be looking at the Living World strand. This strand is about living things and how they interact with their environment. Students develop an understanding of the diversity of life and life processes, and of the impact of humans on all forms of life. As a result, they are able to make more informed decisions about significant issues including the sustainability of New Zealand’s unique fauna and flora and distinctive ecosystems.

Technology – Technology is intervention by design: the use of practical and intellectual resources to develop products and systems that expand human possibilities by addressing needs and realising opportunities. We will be focused on the Technological Practice strand. Through this, students examine the practice of others and undertake their own. They develop a range of outcomes, including concepts, plans, briefs, technological models, and fully realised products or systems.

The aim throughout this unit will be to link it conceptually with our term one unit on Kaitiaki, environmental protection and sustainable living, and to produce a product that we can use as a fundraiser to donate to the Kiwis for Kiwis organisation.



Reading – As with the previous term, students will be carefully grouped to accommodate differing learning needs. The programme will be run in a rotation and the structure of the rotation is based around the Daily Five programme. This ensures that, during a reading rotation, students will spend instructional time with the teacher and will also work on managing their learning independently.

Our focus for instructional sessions is based on individual learning needs but may include elements of the following: decoding, reading for meaning and developing their ability to use a range of comprehension strategies.

This term we will also be undertaking a novel study component for some groups. The reading of the novels will be accompanied by group discussion, comprehension questions and a key vocab focus.

Writing – The first two weeks of this term will be completing our independent memoir poems and goal setting. From weeks 3 – 8 we will be looking at procedural writing to link with our unit of inquiry. Weeks 9 and 10 will be focused on narrative writing and this will likely continue into term 4.



Weeks 1 – 4 will focus on multiplication and division strategies. This is a continuation and consolidation of our learning from the latter weeks of term 2.

Throughout a maths session, we will run a rotation that ensures students will have teacher directed sessions, independent application of learning, and a range of activities that support our focus topic and consolidate understanding of different maths concepts.

Maths Whizz is an element of this rotation and allows for independent, targeted learning based on each students level. Mt Multi will continue to assist in the development of fast, accurate recall of basic facts.

Weeks 5 – 8 we will be looking at measurement. In weeks 9 and 10, we will revisit our addition and subtraction strategy learning.



Over the coming weeks, we will be building cross country practise into our programme. This is in preparation for Cross Country in week 7 of this term.

The year 5 and 6 students will be participating in the Super Sixes competition in Hastings this term. We have entered three events: tag rugby (similar to rippa rugby), hockey and netball. As part of our sports programme we will be learning the skills and rules to participate in these sports. There is no equivalent of this event for our year 7 and 8s but they will be learning the same skills and supporting their peers with the development of these skills.

Super sixes will be held over two days and the 2018 dates are the 18th and 19th of September. We would appreciate parent support on this day to assist with transport and supervision.


We have begun our Spanish language unit and have one session every Tuesday afternoon. The aim is to develop the range of formulaic expressions that help us to communicate in Spanish and the tasks are designed to reinforce learning of certain concepts. We will focus on pronunciation, the basics of the language including greetings and numbers, music, and the cultural components of learning a language.



Reading – At this age, many students are reading independently and for interest. For this reason, the texts that we study in class will not always be in the form of levelled readers that are common in the junior and middle years. We will have a library time every week, where students will be encouraged to choose high interest reading material. We recommend a period of sustained reading every night and, if your child has not received any material from school, then please assist them in finding high interest reading material from a range of sources.

Maths – Every week we will be testing our basic facts and progressing up the ‘Mt Multi’. This is to support their fast and accurate recall of basic facts to assist with the in-class learning of strategies and knowledge. This test will be glued into their home learning books every week so you are all able to see results and the facts that need to be learnt. To pass Mt Multi, students will need to achieve 100% in a test to progress to the next level. Students learn in different ways and it would be helpful if you could support your child in finding a way to learn and remember these. This could include writing them, playing learning games or using ICT.

Maths Whizz is another tool that students can access at home to support their learning. Maths Whizz can be locked into a topic to support the current topic at school (see above for this term), for example, Statistics or Number. All sessions are targeted to individual student needs therefore, making this an excellent at home learning option.

Spelling – There will be spelling words every week. Similar to maths, these will be tested and the results glued into the home learning book. We will begin with the essential lists as these are the most common words used in writing. Once the essential lists are mastered, students will receive increasingly difficult words with some associated activities.

Other – At times, there may be an element of research and preparation required to support our current unit of inquiry. If this is required it will be outlined in the home learning book.

Please note, how you decide to structure these elements are based around what works for you at home. We recommend some sustained reading most nights however, it is not a requirement to cover everything, every night. Alternatively, you may wish to do a little bit of each, every night. Homework time should rarely exceed 30 minutes for this age group.

If there is anything further that you wish to discuss, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.