St. George's Class 2012-13


Our topic this half term has been Haiti. We have really enjoyed learning about a different country. On this page we will share some of our work and ideas about Haiti.

Running the Road to ABC

We read this beautiful book by Denize Lauture and used it to find out about rural and urban Haiti.

Aladdin (February 1, 2000)
Below you can see our story maps. We mapped the narrative and thought about what the children in the story would see and hear in each setting. Later, we mapped our own journeys to school and wrote stories in the same poetic style as 'Running the Road to ABC'.

Earthquake Challenge

This week we have been learning about the major earthquake in Haiti in January 2010. Today I challenged the class to build a structure that could withstand an earthquake.
We looked at some buildings and discussed their shapes to decide which would be best in an earthquake.
The children were given only two building materials... marshmallows and spaghetti!

Trying out designs:

The finished structures:

Earthquake testing!

Writing About Haiti

Here are some samples of writing by some of the children. Their writing this half term has been excellent and these are only a few examples of their fabulous work. 

Please do leave a comment to let these children know what you liked about their work.

The Shake

It was a blazingly hot day. I was having the most fun time I had had in years in our local play park. I was on the highest mountain in Port-au-Prince!

But all of a sudden the earth started to move! I asked my friends if it was just me, but they said "No!", they were just as petrified as I was!

The sand stone fell on us. We kept coughing the smoke up but it kept on coming. Coughing it up again and again, the sinister smell of dust.

But out of the blue, I couldn't quite make out the figure, but I could hear the comforting footsteps and soft voices of Mama and Papa. My brothers were saying "Where are you?" I could hear the loud echo.

I was speechless! I hugged them and I thought I would never let go!

By Rosa

The Earthquake

One light and bright day, I went on a trip in my dad's Jeep with my puppy called Gus. We were very tired indeed. When we started, the earth started to shake!

Me and Gus were asleep so we didn't notice anything. Then I woke up and saw a building had fallen on us so I tried to open a door, but they were all jammed, so I smashed a window and climbed out.

My puppy quickly pounded towards my dad, but he wasn't my dad. He was nowhere to be seen. Suddenly, I heard a voice, it sounded like my daddy's voice. It got louder and louder.

It was my dad! I ran towards him with joy. It was a joy to see the bright colours, breathe fresh air, feel the sand. I was so happy.

By Sonny

The Wobbly Day

One day, in the night, I was playing snooker. I scored a goal! Suddenly, the earth started to shake. I was so scared I jumped down. I was on the 9th floor. The buildings collapsed and I ran and ran.

Then I stopped and heard a sound. It was loud. But I was cold, I have to get in bed. Then it stopped! Everything had collapsed, I was scared but I was pleased because it had stopped.

But I lost my flat. But I went to my friend's house, he is kind. The next day it was on the news and I was on the TV. But there was an earthquake again. Later on, I was sleeping and I had a nightmare. I woke up but I could go back to sleep.

By Michael

Lost and Found

I was in my house in Port-au-Prince with my friend Abel. We were playing hide-and-seek, suddenly there was a really scary earthquake! We could see a lot of dust, it was very dark so we could not see each other. Then I called "Abel!", Abel called back "Antonio!". Then we touched each others hands.

Then we told some stories to each other. We nearly died so we escaped and found two bottles of water. So we drank the whole bottle and we lived. We were happy so we went to find our families and we did, so we said goodbye.

By Antonio

Hot Haiti- A Poem

I went to Haiti on a tour,
The people there are very VERY poor,
They have to live on one pound a day,
And this is what I have to say.

They don't ever have enough to eat,
No bread, no fruit, let alone meat,
But what they do have is frogs and lizzards,
And hurricanes and earthquakes, but never blizzards.

So I'm going to pray and pray,
That Haitian people will be happy,
One Day!

By Ella F.

Earthquake Paragraph

It was a sweaty, melting hot day. I was walking like a zombie because the sun was burning me. I walked like a zombie all the way to the most haunted, enormous, gigantic school I have ever seen in my whole life! But then, something was wobbling in this place... I think it's an... EARTHQUAKE! I feel...well what do you think? I'll tell you, I feel EXTREMELY... TERRIFIED!

By Marielle

Drapo Flags

This half term, as part of our Haiti topic, we have been learning about the Haitian art of Drapo flags. We enjoyed looking at these beautiful sequined flags and finding shapes and designs that we liked. We looked particularly at flags made by an artist called Georges Valris.
We then worked in groups to design our own Drapo flags. The designs were drawn carefully onto our flag material.
This week, we painted our flags as a group.
Yesterday, we used needles and thread to sew on sequins to embellish our flags. We loved the sequins on the real Drapo flags and wanted to make ours look sparkly and special too.
Next week, we will add our finishing touches ahead of the Celebration Procession with the whole school on Thursday.

Bouki Goes Market- Our First Podcast

At the end of our Haiti topic we discovered the Haitian tradition of 'Krik Krak' oral storytelling. We listened to a folk tale called Bouki Goes to Market and played lots of games to learn the story. Each child was able to tell the story and we all joined in to tell the story together, one line at a time.

We used a microphone to record our storytelling and Miss Benn has uploaded it as a podcast.

To hear our story, click here!

Haiti Posters

To end our Haiti topic, we produced posters to persuade people to visit Haiti. We considered the positive, exciting things about Haiti (rather than some of the sadder things we have learnt about). Below you can see some examples of our work:

Please leave us a comment to tell us what you think of our work.

Aoife made this fabulous video to persuade people to visit Haiti- it made Miss Benn giggle so much that we wanted to share it with you! Enjoy!


Our adventure has begun! St. George's class have leapt into the world of Myst. Myst is an incredible game with beautiful, but mysterious, settings.

We spent our first lesson looking at the first landscape in the game, then each child had to write me a letter persuading me to allow them to come on the adventure. They had to use their imaginations to think about which skills would be useful on the adventure, then persuade me that they were just the person for the job!

Source: Myst Exile- Ubisoft/ Focus Multimedia Ltd.

Here are some examples of the fantastic writing from St. George's class this week:

A persuasive letter from Calum:

Dear Miss Benn,

I have enjoyed discovering Myst. I think you should let me come on the adventure to Myst because I am an archaeologist and I am also very good at building. My contraptions are very good! I could give you a swimming pool to keep you cool and I could break a rock and get water for you.

I would be helpful on the journey because I could take pictures for you on my camera. I could help by making lots of transport and taking lots of bricks.

I would most like to see the things that live there. If I am not there, please tell me if people live there.

Yours sincerely,


A Persuasive Letter from Cordelia:

Dear Miss Benn,

If you need a doctor and an animal specialist, then I'm the one to take. Here are some reasons why. I am a FANTASTIC animal specialist and I can tell what every animal is from worms to bears and we will probably see some bizarre animals.

Now, on the doctor front if you, Catherine or her baby got sick I would be there in a jiffy. I am also a great journalist and I could write a story about it and lots of people would want to come and they might bring some food, money, music and water.

So pleeeeeeeeeeease can I come? I am so GREAT and interested in the place called Myst. Just remember I'm a journalist, doctor and animal specialist.



Description of the First Myst Scene by Thalia and Abel:

In a deserted mysterious island there stands flaming hot mountains the size of Mount Everest. You can feel the soles of your feet burning like flaming lava. The sky is gleaming bright blue. The land is as hot as the crust of the earth.

Description of the First Myst Scene by Sofia and Cordelia:

On a magical, mysterious island called Myst there are flaming crunchy rocks that are like crisps. As you step on the floor you can hear your feet playing a rhythm and in the background you can hear the rocks falling off the cliffs. If you look carefully you might see rabbits poking out of their holes. It's got pure blue sky with birds flapping their wings. It's got blue ants that are 1000 years old. There are loads of colourful bright flowers.

Diary Entry of Our First Day in Myst by Ella F.:

Dear Diary,

I'm in shock! So the man went into his study and then... sorry, I should begin from the start. At about 6 o'clock this morning the huge ship came into the dock. We had been travelling for three days and three nights (!) so I was glad to get off the mini Titanic. As soon as I got off I saw the most overwhelming landscape I had ever seen.

I was staring at a huge, rocky, lava-like area. Suddenly, I heard a voice behind me- I turned around. I was staring at a slim, pretty woman holding a baby.
"Would you, by any chance, be Catherine?" I said.
"Yes," she said, "I am."

We were now in the study, and I was staring at a crystal rose, the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.
"Atrus will be in in a minute," Catherine said.
"Thank you," I replied.

Atrus came into his study a minute later. "Now," he said, "I -" suddenly there was a huge crash and an old man burst into the study. He threw a fireball at Atrus, missing and hitting his desk instead. He grabbed one of Atrus' books, jumped into it and disappeared. I ran at the book and grabbed it, then everything went black.

I woke up and wondered where I was and then I realised. I was in the book!

Our Myst Creatures and Their Habitats

This week we combined our Myst adventure with our learning about habitats in science. We looked at the different habitats that we could see in the Myst settings. Once we had identified the habitats, we used our imaginations to create some creatures that might live there. We thought about what a creature that lived in each habitat might eat, look like and need to survive.

Here is a selection of some of our creatures- hope you're feeling brave, as some are a little scary!

Through the Myst door...

As we explore further into the land of Myst, we have discovered that it is a world full of doors. The doors seem to be everywhere we look! We have been predicting what might be through the doors- then exploring to see whether we were right. However, sometimes the doors are locked!

Here are some of the doors we have seen so far- can you remember where we saw them?

Source: Myst Exile- Ubisoft/ Focus Multimedia Ltd.

After looking closely at the designs of some of the doors in Myst, we designed and made our own!

Myst Maps

Source: Myst Exile- Ubisoft/ Focus Multimedia Ltd.

After exploring Myst even further, we have started to design our own Myst lands. We thought about what we would see and hear there, which animals or plants we might encounter, what the weather would be like and what visitors to our land might do. Each child wrote a fabulous description of their new land and produced a brochure to persuade people to visit their land.

Following that, we worked in groups to produce maps of our new lands for Myst. Each group worked together to create a map of their island. We tried out a new material this week- we used inks and experimented with the different lines, marks and mixing techniques that we could make using ink.

Work in progress...

The final maps!


New Games for the Myst Series

We had been creating our own Myst lands for a few weeks before Christmas and had made brochures, written descriptions and drawn maps of them.

Then, we received a very special video message from Atrus himself- he needed St. George's Class to help him!

We had to create sleeves for a game about our new world. We had to make them eye-catching and the writing on the back had to persuade people to buy our game. Here are some excellent examples- would you buy a game about Wabiza? How about Zahaan? Or Avantor?

Click on the pictures to make them bigger and easier to read!

By Jonathan

By Alfie

By Nathan

By Joseph

By Cassea

By Calum

By Jacob



"Kaspar is not smart, Johnny Trott."

This week we started our new Literacy topic. We are reading Michael Morpurgo's Kaspar Prince of Cats and will be learning about the Titanic.

Source: Harper Collins Children's Books

On Thursday we had a visit from the very grand and rather fussy Countess Kandinsky. She did not like Johnny Trott's description of her precious cat Kaspar and demanded that the 'horrible' children in St. George's Class write her some much better descriptions, 'immediately'! She was rather surprised with how well they did and decided that she would allow them to be published on the blog. So here they all are...

Click on the pictures to make them bigger and easier to read.

A Shock for Johnny!

 Source: Harper Collins- Michael Morpuro- Kaspar Prince of Cats
Last week in Kaspar Prince of Cats, we were all shocked to read that the Countess had died in an accident. Of course the main character of our story, Johnny, was much more shocked. We imagined that we were Johnny and thought about how he felt in the moment when Freddie told him about the accident. What does he feel? Where in his body? How could we describe the feeling in his tummy? What did his hands feel like?

We worked together to write a poem. The children offered ideas for lines for the poem and we wrote them on strips of paper. Then we made a ladder with the strips of paper and moved them around until we felt that it was in the correct order and our poem was finished.

Here is the finished poem:


Oh no! Sadly a lady died,
I have goosebumps like a cold bubble bath,
I'm gasping for breath like the end of a marathon,
I can hear nothing but the thoughts in my head,
My heart beats hard like galloping horses' hooves,
I am shaking like a volcano about to erupt,
I feel hot like the burning rising sun,
The Countess is dead.
I fall to the floor like a popped balloon.

By St. George's Class

The children then worked with a partner to draw what they thought was happening in Johnny's mind when he heard of the Countess' death. Click on the pictures to make them bigger!

 By Sonny and Ella F.

By Cassea and Agatha

By Luke and Marielle

Each child then wrote their own poem to show how Johnny felt when he heard that the Countess had died. Here are some of the best of a fantastic collection!

 By Jack

By Eliska

 By Rosa

 By Rhiannon

 By Cordelia

 By Marielle

 By Nathan

 By Amelie

 By Ella W.

 By Calum

Titanic Terror!

We have been enjoying Kaspar Prince of Cats and we are particularly interested by the chapters set on the Titanic. This week we have looked at non-fiction books, videos, websites and newspapers to learn more about the Titanic disaster. We imagined what it would be like to board the Titanic and learnt about the different conditions for first, second and third class passengers. Our most fascinating lessons, however, were when we discovered what happened in the build up to the crash with the iceberg and what happened afterwards.

Towards the end of the week, the children of St. George's class became journalists. They gathered information, took eye witness statements and wrote a newspaper article about the Titanic sinking.

Here are some excellent examples (click on the pictures to make them bigger and easier to read):

 By Amelie
By Sofia

By Calum

 By Anna
By Aoife

Next week, we will be reading more of Kaspar Prince of Cats and learning more about the survivors of the Titanic disaster.

Titanic Survivors Podcast

This week we finished our work about the Titanic. We have all found it fascinating! On Thursday we concentrated on the survivors of the Titanic tragedy, following an exciting chapter in Kaspar Prince of Cats. We learnt about who survived and how and what happened to them afterwards.

We watched these videos about real survivors of the disaster.

Then, we used our drama skills to role play journalists in New York interviewing survivors as they arrived on the Carpathia.

Click the link below to listen to our podcast of our interviews:

Here are some other interesting links about the Titanic, if you would like to find out even more!

Amazing photos of the wreck of the Titanic (like those we saw last week)

A great interactive diagram of the Titanic- take a look at all the different areas of the ship:

A quiz about the Titanic (there are only 3 questions, but you can play more than once and it gives you different questions):



Welcome to our Russia page!
This is where we will be sharing everything we learn about Russia over the next few weeks.

One World Week

This week is ONE WORLD WEEK at school. Each class is learning about a different country and the children will be visiting each classroom to learn about the country they are studying and get a stamp in their special passport. We will be taking lots of photos to share on the blog.

In St. George's Class we are learning about Russia. We will be finding out all about Russia for the next month. So far, we have used ICT to research and complete a fact file about Russia, we have been reading and writing about the traditional Russian tale 'Firebird' and painted a mural of St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow.

During our first week of learning about 'Firebird' we have read some of the story, performed some drama, listened to Stravinsky's 'Dance of the Firebird', watched a ballerina perform the Firebird's dance, then made up dances of our own to the music. We used the description of the Firebird in the story to draw some images of what we thought the Firebird looked like.

Here is a video of a short section of the Firebird ballet:

We will be starting a new page on the blog about Russia- take a look at the page tabs at the top of the blog!

A Very Busy Week

We had a very busy week in St. George's Class last week, celebrating One World Week. We had lots of visitors to 'Russia' who came to learn about our country and get their passport stamped. We also had the opportunity to travel around the world, visiting the other countries set up in the classrooms around the school.

We visited; China, Madagascar, Tanzania, Finland, New Zealand, Ireland, Ivory Coast, Afghanistan, Mali, Peru, Norway, Canada and the Antarctic.

Which was your favourite? What did you learn?

We will be putting up some photographs of things we spotted on our tour of the world next week.

Source: acclaimclipart
On Monday, we participated in a sponsored walk to raise money for the orphanage in Zambia that our school supports. If you still have sponsorship money to collect, please bring it in next week!

On Wednesday, we played in a World Cup football tournament.
The Middle School players of the tournament were:

Alex D.
Lucia B.

Congratulations! The overall winners of the tournament were Brazil- well done!

Source: 123rf

On Thursday morning we had a special mass to celebrate St. Anthony of Padua's feast day and to congratulate our First Holy Communicants.

In the afternoon, we had an exciting assembly to celebrate One World Week. Each class showed the school something they had learned or made about their country. We sang a Russian folk song called 'Minka'. Everyone enjoyed it!

On Friday, we had our whole school photograph in the morning. In the afternoon we had a party in class- we tasted some sweet Russian blinis with honey and raisins, then had a dance to some super Russian music.

After school on Friday, some of the children came to International Evening. It was lots of fun! We tasted some delicious food from around the world, everyone came in different national costumes and there was dancing from different cultures. A great evening! Thank you to everyone that came and to those who worked so hard to make the evening such a success.

Source: sinquefield

We're looking forward to learning more about Russia next week, with a special visitor on Thursday and lots more fun with Firebird!

The Hungry Forest

As Prince Ivan approached the 'Edge of the Kingdom' in Firebird, we used the illustration and description to inspire another great class poem.

We looked at this spooky picture:

We completed 'Zone of Relevance' diagrams about the picture. The words that we thought described the scene really well went into the red zone, then as they got less relevant they were put further out on the target board. The words that really didn't describe the scene well were put right outside the target in the white area.

Then we worked in small groups to write some words and phrases that we thought described the picture in an interesting way.

We used these super ideas (plus lots more!) to write our class poem. We used the ladder game again; great lines from different children were written onto strips of paper. We stuck them on the board, then moved them around until we had the poem just right. We left the title until last, to make sure it suited the poem perfectly.

Here is our ladder poem:

The final poem:

The Hungry Forest

The moon shines as a spotlight of hope,
Calmer than anyone had ever known,
The sky as dark as the wolf's heart,
As black as a raven's wing.

The trees cover the moonlight,
Branches snapping menacingly in the whispering forest,
Eyes glowing from the mysterious bushes,
Hungry for meat.

By St. George's Class

Russia Fact Files

At the beginning of our Russia topic, we used ICT to research the country. We practised using a search engine safely and revised how to copy and paste to edit a document.

Here are a couple of lovely examples of Russia Fact Files completed independently by children in St. George's Class, using their ICT skills.

By Antonio

By Alfie

Well done!

Russian Teacakes (Snowballs!)

Today we did some cooking in St. George's Class. As part of our Russia topic, we followed and made a recipe for Russian Teacakes, called 'Snowballs'.

Here are some pictures of the master chefs at work!

We followed this recipe (click the link to view it):

The English conversions for the ingredients are:

227g butter, softened
64g icing sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
228g plain flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon salt

Remember to work with an adult if you are cooking at home- you must be careful with hot or sharp items in the kitchen. Also remember to wash your hands before and after cooking!

We followed the recipe, but did not include the nuts- as our school is nut free. They came out really well and looked and tasted beautiful!

Did you enjoy making the cakes? Did you enjoy eating them?!

Around Our Classroom This Week

Take a look at these pictures of our classroom this week. You can see that we have been learning all about Russia and the Firebird.

What else can you spot?

A Special Visitor

Source: Royal Ballet

Today we were very lucky to have a special visitor; David Pickering. He dances for the Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. He came to teach us about the ballet of The Firebird, which he has performed in himself! He taught us lots of movements and helped us to use proper dancer's posture. We worked in groups to make different shapes with our bodies and move between them in interesting ways. We even got to leap like a firebird!

Source: Royal Ballet

Did you enjoy our ballet lesson today? What was the highlight for you?

Firebird Puppets

This week we have finished our Firebird topic. I am sure you will agree, these firebird puppets are a stunning way to complete our unit of work. Well done everybody!

Russian Dolls

As a part of our Russia topic, we have been admiring some Russian nesting dolls. We have lots of beautiful dolls in our classroom and this week we decided to make some of our own. Here are some photos of us making our dolls and some lovely examples of finished sets.


Amelie said...

I really liked are structures.

Thank you miss benn

Jonathan said...

The children ran and ran they where never out of breath

cordelia said...

I think the marshmallow buildings are great

Jack said...

I loved doing the spaghetti and marshmallow buildings thanks miss Benn.

Marielle said...

I liked the one with the marshmallows and spaghetti structure.Thank you Miss Benn for letting us have this experiment.

Antonio said...

It was lovely

Ella.w said...

can we do the structures again it was lovely

Thank you miss benn

Chelsea said...

I enjoyed doing these.They are great!Thank you Miss Benn .I really really like to do this again.

Chelsea said...

We have put alot of efort into these.

Anna said...

I loved the marshmallows and spagetti. A great idea Miss Benn.

Joseph's mum said...

Fantastic work Year 3/4! I love the marshmallow houses.

Caitlin said...

I liked the drapo flags .I wonder what we are doing after the half term.

Jonathan's Godmother said...

I am very proud of you Jonathan. Keep up the good work at school, well done*

Joseph said...

I think the drapo flags are incredible. Thank you Miss Benn

Paddy said...

Awesome marshmallow houses!

Melissa Johnson said...

I love the earthquake video.

Ella.C said...

I love the video it's very cool.

Antonio's sister said...

Very nice paragraphs! Really interesting project aswell :-)

Antonio's sister Cristina said...

Fantastic paragraphs Antonio! I'm very proud of you:D
Keep up the fantastic Work.

Giulia's dad said...

Marshmellows and spaghetti. What a fantastic idea for a 3D fun game (and learning)!

Anonymous said...

What a lovely blog! So nicely written! Aoife's video seems to have disappeared though - can we see it again?

Pete & Catherine

Unknown said...

Hello! Aoife's video is still here! You'll need to make sure that you have the latest version of Flash on your computer to be able to see it, but it certainly won't be disappearing from the blog- we're very proud of her work! Miss Benn

A Caribbean Teacher said...

Some excellent writing about Haiti here - I especially liked Rosa's work and her use of powerful vocabulary. Well done everyone!

Unknown said...

Hello 'A Caribbean Teacher', welcome to our blog! Thank you for your comment.

Chelsea's Brother(Tobore) said...

Great blog.Good work with the marshmellow houses.

Anonymous said...

I love the creativity not only of this blog but of all the projects done by the children, my favourites being the marshmallow/spaghetti houses and the earthquake video. Keep up the good work everyone!

Rhiannon's cousin

Cordelia's Gran said...

Hi Cordelia, been on your blog page again and read all about the project your class did on Haiti and the earthquake challenge. The drago flags you all made were excellent. Even Grandma and Grandad are learning something new by reading your work.
Keep up the good work. Gramdma and Grandad from Bolton.

Ella F's Dad said...

Aoife's video is very creative, very imaginative and very funny. I enjoyed watching it with Ella

Cordelia's mummy and her little brother Francis said...

Wow ....we loved listening to the marvellous story so beautifully retold by all of St. Georges.....fantastic!!

cordelia said...

thank you so much I love the myst

gabriel said...

This is very fantastic.

anna's mum said...

What a nice blog u have. Now i don't need to go to the class,its all on the blog

rosa said...

Im really looking foward to when we go to lullingston

Anna said...

i wish we could do this for ever.

Anna said...

i love it always

Calum said...

i love doing the drapo flags.

Agatha said...

liked the spaghetti and marshmallow challenge, but loved making travel ads for haiti

michael said...

I like the art its really good.

hana said...

hallo miss benn
the house is beutiful

luke said...

i would like to go to Haiti

Sophia and Katie and Aimee xx said...

this is so cool , thanks for posting this Miss Benn

Roderick said...

Is that a video that you made, if it was I am amazed!

Justin said...

This looks very fun!

Unknown said...


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