Monthly Archives: June 2016

Programming a dancing cat

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During Computing today, Year 2 learned how to program in Scratch (the full version) today.

It’s more advanced than the previous lesson in Scratch Junior. They were tasked to program the cat to move back and forward using the move 10 steps block and then use different costumes to make it appear as if the cat was dancing.

The children then added sound and a background to their work.

With the varied amount of programming language Year 2 have learned during the last few weeks, they are now ready for programming in Year 3.

Learning about dictionaries

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Today we started to learn more about dictionaries. First we explored them and tried to find out how to use them for ourselves.

This is what we learnt:
• They are in alphabetical order.
• If the first letter is the same you look at the second letter.
• A dictionary tells you what a word means.
• You can use it to help you spell words
• Some words have suffixes.
• Some dictionaries tell you what sort of word it is, for example a noun or adjective.

We practised finding different words and learnt that it was sometimes faster to start in the middle or end of the dictionary if the word started with a letter in the middle or end of the alphabet. We then started to practise giving definitions of words and putting words into alphabetical order. Our end of term challenge is to produce a dictionary of rainforest words. Today Miss Williams gave us some words and we started to work together to put them into alphabetical order. Over the next few weeks we will learn about the words and put their definitions into our dictionaries. Keep looking to see our finished dictionaries!

Programming in Scratch Junior

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This afternoon, Toucans were very lucky to visit Harborne Academy’s Samsung Digital Hub as part of their Computing lesson.

The children learned how to program using Scratch Junior, another form of programming language. They were tasked to create algorithms to program a vehicle to move from one side of the screen to another, using differrent speeds. Then they were tasked to program three different animals to race each other. And finally, they programmed three spooky animals only to move when they got tapped using a finger.

The children are gaining a very quick understanding of programming language and now showing some independent learning to produce their own algorithms – well done Toucans!

More debugging and sequence

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Year 2 have continued to learn about debugging and putting instructions into the correct sequence for the program to work.

This afternoon, Toucans used Purple Mash’s 2Code program to go through various debugging and sequence activities.

On Monday, the the children will be doing further programming at their trip to Harborne Academy, learning about Scratch. Keep visiting our blog for regular updates.

Learning algorithms and debugging

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During Computing today, Year 2 Toucans learned about creating algorithms (instructions) and then debug parts of a code which don’t work as intended. Mr Whitehouse from Harborne Academy visited our class to lead today’s lesson.

The children were tasked with two different activities.

First Activity
The first activity was to listen to the instructions Mr Whitehouse said and draw the person as described. The task was to test the children’s listening skills and how carefully they can put their instruction writing to task.

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Second Activity
The second activity was to use a website called Rapid Router and program a van to move to a finish line. They were using forward, turn left and turn right blocks.

Mr Baddhan and Mr Whitehouse were very impressed at how quickly the children understood the concept of algorithms, sequence and debugging.

Toucans visit Twycross Zoo!

Today, Year 2 visited Twycross Zoo. It was a truly fantastic day! First we went to visit the meerkats; they were much cuter than we had expected them to be. Next we went to the penguins. They were all very interesting to watch. At first they were on the rocks and then they went into the water and we watched them swim underwater through a special window. It was amazing! They were very fast and it looked like they were splashing their flippers at us.

Then we went to see the tapirs. We were very interested in them as we have been learning about them in our rainforest projects this term and they didn’t let us down. They were much bigger than we expected them to be! We thought they might be shy as when we arrived… they left!

After that, we went to look at the flamingos. We were surprised at how pink they were. When we read the information on the sign it told us they get their colour from the shrimp they eat. Next we visited a Borneo longhouse. There were lots of birds and plants that might live in the rainforest. We also saw a display of people who live in the rainforest. It was interesting to look at the clothes they wear, the clay pots they make and the baskets they weave. Then we went to see the spider-monkeys as we have learnt about them as well. There was a lady giving an information talk and feeding them and we learnt lots of interesting facts.

Then came our long-awaited lunchtime! (It was only 11:45 and most of Toucans had asked ‘Is it lunch time yet?’ at least 4 times!) We then had a play in the play area. After lunch we went to the Discovery Centre for a rainforest explorers workshop. Nicky asked us lots of questions about the rainforest and was very impressed with our knowledge. She then told us lots more facts and we even got to touch a cockroach and tortoise. Some of us were a bit nervous (as you can see from the photos!) but most of us had a try. We were surprised the cockroach felt smooth and soft like a nail.

Next we went to the butterfly forest. Lots of butterflies landed on us. They were so beautiful. Then we went to visit all the different monkeys they have including the Orang-Utans and Chimpanzees. The largest chimpanzee was very shy because he kept hiding from the camera! The baby was funny because he kept covering himself with hay.

Our favourite part pf the afternoon was visiting the elephants and giraffes. We were amazed at how big the elephants were and how tall the giraffes were. They were very impressive. As we walked through the elephant forest we saw Ganesh! We have been learning about him in our RE lessons so it was lovely to see a real statue and temple.

Overall we had a wonderful day, even the teachers had a great time! They were very impressed with our behaviour too. Thank you to Mrs Johnson, Mr Koeri and Mrs Fotaras for accompanying us on our day at the zoo.

Animation using Pivot Stick

During Computing, Year 2 Toucans created some animations using Pivot Stick animator. Children learned that animation is a set of frames put together.

Toucans class really enjoyed today’s lesson with Mr Baddhan learning about animation and creating some fantastic stick animation.

Sean’s Animation
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Ishmael’s Animation
Ishmail

Kyle’s Animation
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Sophie and Isabella’s Animation
Sophie Isabelle

Joshua F’s Animation
Josh F

Designing our spiders

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Today we started our final DT project. We have already designed our spiders so today we started to make them. First we had to draw very carefully around a template of a spider. Then we cut them out, also very carefully! We had to make sure they were exactly the same size as our next task is to begin sewing them together. Keep an eye on our blog to see how we get on.

Sunflower competition

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Our sunflower competition ended on Friday and the winner was Ava! As you can see from the photograph it was a close competition but Ava’s sunflower measured 52cm. Well done everyone. Toucans have taken their sunflowers home now to continue to look after them and watch as they hopefully bloom into beautiful sunflowers.

Our clay coil pots

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We had a super time in Art today! As our topic has been Rainforests we learnt how people who live there use natural materials to make the things they need. We learnt they use clay to make pots, bowls, plates and many more things. We then made our own clay coil pots. We watched Miss Williams and thought it looked easy… we soon found out it was actually quite tricky! We had to roll it thin enough to coil but not too thin or it would break. We used water to make slip which is like a glue made from the clay. It was good fun but there was also a lot of perseverance needed. We are going to decorate them next week.

Forces

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Today we started a new topic in Science learning all about forces. We started by thinking of how we make things move and we came up with two main forces: pushes and pulls.

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Our learning objective for today was to carry out a fair test. Miss Williams showed us how to make a flying fish and then we made three of our own of all different sizes. We took them outside to experiment with. We had to find the answers to these three questions:

  • Which fish out of the three different sizes will fly the fastest?
  • How can we make a fish fly faster?
  • How can we make a fish fly further?
  • We worked in pairs so we could share our ideas with a partner.

    To find the answer to the first question we worked with a partner so we could drop them altogether. We dropped them at the same time and from the same height to make sure it was a fair test. We found out that they all dropped at the same speed. It didn’t matter whether the fish was big or small they fell together.

    We then experimented with making it go faster and further. This is what we tried:
    Blowing them

  • Waiting for the wind
  • Pushing them as we let go
  • Jumping as we let them go
  • Standing on something tall
  • We have took our fish home to experiment with them more. We enjoyed experimenting with our fish and are looking forward to our next experiment tomorrow.

    Sunflower update

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    Wow – our sunflowers have been busy! Whilst we have been sunning ourselves it seems our sunflowers have been doing the same! Some of them are more than 30cm now. They are so tall that Miss Williams has put small canes in to support the stems. Ava, Ishmael and Joshua T are winning the race at the moment but the competition isn’t over until Friday. Check back then to see who won.