Newtown Community Primary School
'Newtown Primary School is a Community Primary School and we take the "Community" aspect of our title very seriously. Our children, their families and extended families are at the heart of everything we do.'

Cedar Class (Year 5)

Welcome to Cedar Class!


My name is Mrs Bieda and I am so pleased to be teaching you in Cedar class this year. I am very lucky to be supported by our amazing teaching assistant, Mrs Hall.


You will be faced with many new challenges in Year 5 but if you remember to approach them with a positive attitude and are always prepared to ‘have a go’, you will find yourself enjoying your learning within a caring and supportive environment. I am looking forward to teaching you all of the exciting topics we will be covering this year, beginning with our D.T. topic – ‘How does a boat float?’ and our Science topic – ‘Living Things and their Habitats’ in term one.


Key things to remember:


  • A full PE kit needs to be in school every day. 
  • You should read on a daily basis and record this in the back of your learning destination book.
  • Maths homework will be set every Friday and will be linked to what you have been learning in class. Spellings and Literacy homework will also be set on a Friday; all homework should be completed by the Friday of the following week.
  • Your learning destination book can also be used for any additional home learning that you wish to do.


Cedar had a great day at Clarendon!


Olympic Week in Cedar

During Olympic week, Cedar class were given New Zealand as their focus country. They researched information about the country, including traditions, food, the diverse landscape, their Olympics medal success and which sport New Zealand has had the most medal success in (rowing). They found out that New Zealand is famous for pavlova, so on Wednesday, Cedar class had great fun making their own pavlovas. Their whisking skills and patience were put to the test when whisking the double cream, but they all thoroughly enjoyed the end result!

Term 5 Science

The topic for this term’s Science was Earth and Space. Cedar class enjoyed learning more about the planets of the Solar system, the moon and the moons of other planets. On Thursday 23rd May, they mapped out a scaled version of the solar system on the field, using the scale of 1 metre = 1 AU (Astronomical unit, the distance from Earth to the sun). They were surprised at how far apart some of the planets were and shocked to discover that in reality, 1 AU = 93,000,000 miles!


On Thursday 9th May, Cedar class visited Carymoor, where they enjoyed an Anglo-Saxon day. They took part in a number of activities including grinding wheat, making willow plates, orienteering and a runes treasure hunt. Everyone had a fantastic day; the staff of Carymoor and our coach driver were very complimentary about the children’s behaviour.

Term 5 Art

During term 5, one of our topics was Art. Each class focused on an artist and in Cedar class, our artist was Andy Warhol. All of the children worked so carefully during this topic, they practised drawing Andy Warhol’s ‘Mickey Mouse’ print and could quickly see that printing was going to be far easier than trying to draw a picture four times!

They created a simple design, which they then carefully drew in reverse on to a polystyrene tile. They thoroughly enjoyed printing their designs on to their t-shirts and were able to improve their printing technique by evaluating their first print and adjusting the amount of paint for the remaining three prints.

Following this, the children recreated their design using a different media – oil pastels, which I’m sure you’ll agree look stunning. The children are very much looking forward to taking their t-shirts home!

Term 4 Science

Cedar class had lots of fun investigating whether materials were soluble or insoluble as part of this term’s topic ‘Properties of materials’. They were able to make accurate predictions and suggest how they would change their investigation if they were to repeat it.

Term 4 Geography

The focus for Geography during this term is ‘Somewhere to settle’. As part of this topic, Cedar class have been comparing the land use in Trowbridge in 1890 with that of today. They were very surprised to see there used to be a cattle market in the centre of Trowbridge! Following on from this, the children were able to use their fieldwork skills when they visited Trowbridge town centre. They collected data about the types of shop they saw and how many there were in each category, before recording the types of land use in the town centre and suggesting how this could be improved.


Cedar class had lots of fun during Science Week

Term 3 Science

To finish our forces topic, the children carried out an investigation into whether the shape of an object affects the speed at which it travels through water.

They made four 3D shapes, a cube, a cylinder, a cone and a sphere, each weighing 50g. They then used stopwatches to accurately measure the time taken for each shape to drop. The cone took the least amount of time and the children were able to recognise that this was because it is a streamlined shape, resulting in less water resistance. They also noted it was important to drop the cone with the flat face upwards every time, to ensure the test was a fair one. 


The geography topic in Cedar this term has been based on Antarctica, answering the question ‘Why do penguins prefer electric cars?’ We have looked at climate change and the effect it is having around the world, particularly in Antarctica. We have also looked at renewable and non-renewable energy sources and as a result, Cedar class are now able to answer the question, knowing that diesel and petrol cars release more carbon dioxide into the Earth’s atmosphere than electric cars.

To begin this topic, Cedar class were visited by Al Sylvester, a polar explorer, who shared his incredible experience of trekking across Antarctica. He demonstrated how many layers of clothes were needed to avoid frostbite in temperatures up to -89 degrees! The children listened intently to Al and he was so impressed by the questions they asked, which showed respect and maturity.

New teachers in Cedar

One of the writing units during term 2 was to write an explanation text on 'Celebrations'. As part of this, we invited two new teachers (two members of our class) to share their knowledge and experiences of Eid. 

Both boys spoke clearly and confidently to the class and then patiently answered the many questions Cedar class asked them! The class were really interested to find out how Eid is celebrated and about Islam in general. Well done boys, future teachers!


During term 2, Cedar have been investigating forces. They found out the definition of the words weight and mass, then they used force meters to measure the weight of objects around the classroom. The children were surprised to find that weight isn’t measured in kilograms, but in newtons, and that the weight of an object is called its mass. They then found the mass of the objects and compared the results to see if they could find a link between the two measurements.

Term 2

The focus subject for this term is history and in Cedar class, the children are learning about the Anglo Saxons and Scots. To begin the topic, Cedar class carried out an investigation into what was discovered at Sutton Hoo in 1939. They looked at evidence and formed a hypothesis, then looked at further evidence which helped them to identify the discovery as an Anglo-Saxon ship. They also found out that it was a burial site for King Raedwald and it contained many treasures. 

This week, Cedar class have been writing diary entries in role as Basil Brown, an archaeologist who began the dig at Sutton Hoo. I have been so impressed with how well they have included thoughts and emotions in their writing, as shown in the following examples.

'I was quite disappointed but still curious to find out what else could be beneath our feet' - Charlie

'I started digging, day and night, mound by mound, one by one. I started off intrigued, then stressed and eventually felt hopeless'- Levi

'Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months and still nothing at all' - Juanita

Term 1 DT

As promised, here are photographs of Cedar class children with their finished boats. We had lots of fun testing them in the classroom and the children were able to suggest changes that could be made to further improve their boat design and performance.

Sewing skills

As you may have been told by your child, Cedar class are making boats this term during DT lessons, they are progressing well and pictures of their final products will be shared once complete. 

The children showed great resilience today when sewing patterns onto the sails of their boats, some sat for a considerable amount of time, determined to thread their needle or tie a knot, but their patience paid off and there was lots of celebration when they succeeded. The majority of them had never sewn before, so to see them so proud of their achievements was fantastic! 


Cedar class have been practising their fundamental movement skills in their PE lessons. They have been improving their running skills and being able to change direction quickly, a necessary skill in any sport. They have been learning the names of the muscles of the human body and the importance of ensuring they warm up muscles before exercising. 


Cedar have enjoyed playing games to practice these skills and have really impressed me with how much they have improved their jumping skills by making sure they use the correct technique.

Library visit

Cedar class enjoyed their recent visit to Trowbridge library. They enjoyed listening to stories and finding out all about the library, before choosing a book to enjoy. They were amazed to find out that joining the library is free and by how many books they can borrow! 

Self portraits

Cedar class have made a great start to their artwork this year by drawing their self portraits. They practised drawing different facial features, then worked carefully to create these fantastic drawings using a range of graded pencils to create tone and shade in their work.