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St Robert Southwell

Catholic Primary School

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Home Learning


Please focus on reading regularly and practising times tables (up to 12x12).  There are also weekly spellings, online maths learning on Maths Whizz  and extra tasks in their homework books. See below for more details and a summary of expectations. 


The more your child can be encouraged to practice, to consolidate, to extend and deepen their learning outside class, the greater the immediate and long-term benefits for them. Supporting your child to develop healthy study habits, routines, self-discipline, resilience and creativity will mean they will do better and be happier in year 4 and onwards.  If possible, we hope you can also enjoy the opportunity to participate in their learning journey - they will grow up so fast, so make the most of it now!



Reading - we try in class to build an enjoyment of and passion for reading so that it can develop into a long-term healthy habit, bringing enjoyment and learning as they children grow up. While we encourage children to read chapter books, as they best support the children's development of skills as writers (and persuasive and entertaining speakers) and develop their vocabulary more, we also recognise that a range of text types is beneficial and that any reading is better than none - even comics, Top Trump cards or the back of the cereal packet! We don't want reading to become a chore or to be seen as a negative experience, so we would encourage parents still to offer to read together or read to the child, or, if possible, even to provide audio books, such as through a Kindle reader. 

Ideally, we would like the children to read 4 to 5 times a week and to record the book name and author and then the page numbers read with the date as they progress through the book. We love seeing the yellow Reading Records on a Friday, if possible together with the book itself so that we can briefly chat with each child and celebrate, encourage and reward them for their reading. It'd be great (and rewarded with house points) if children write a short comment - their opinion about what they've read, something they found interesting, a word they learnt or an answer to a suitable question you ask them (which could be based on those on their 'Vipers' bookmarks). 

For more suggestions of texts, please see:



Spelling -  Ten to twelve spellings are set weekly. These are sent out, if possible on a Friday. They are practised in class on a Monday and Thursday. Children should aim for an achievable target based on their confidence as spellers. The expectations by year 6 are very high so many words set will be challenging, but if they make the effort to learn these words now, then they won't have to worry about them in the future.  Children are expected to improve on their own high scores each work, achieving or maintaining their own personal best. The test is on a Friday morning. 


Times Tables -   Having confident, accurate and fast recall of times tables facts will make maths easier for your child this year and even more so in year 5 and beyond. If they can consolidate their knowledge of multiplication facts up to 12 x 12 now, this will enable them to succeed in and enjoy maths for the rest of their school life. To reinforce the importance of this essential skill, there is a statutory times test by the Department of Education for all year 4 children across the country in June each year.  The reality is that the harder your child finds times tables, the harder we need to work to support and engage them with their learning. This is a process of trial and error, but for many children who still struggle, they will likely benefit from your support with practical, tactile, hands on practise activities. Some children will like songs. There are many videos on Youtube or songs online on Spotify. The school provides your child with a Times Tables Rockstars subscription (login details are in their Reading Record) as this can make online practising more fun and children who do well on TTRS will be rewarded with certificates in Friday assemblies. For more details see


Maths Whizz - School also provides each child with a login to this excellent tool, which is an online virtual maths tutor. It provides tailored lessons, practice opportunities and mini tests to develop your child's maths skills, from the level they are currently at. We use this tool a little in class each week, but it is an excellent free-for-you, easily accessible online tool to help your child to clear up doubts, fill gaps in their learning and strengthen and build their knowledge. Each week, a child who has done exceedingly well with their progressions on Maths Whizz is awarded a certificate in Friday's assembly.  Your child's login details are in their Reading Record. For more information, please see .


Extra tasks - these will be set as additional learning, with details or worksheets in their Home Learning books. These serve  to reinforce something we have done in class, with some extra practice, or to give them the chance to extend their learning or to provide some ideas for creative learning you or other family members may like to do together with them. These can often be adapted or expanded based on factors such as your own expectations, and the time and resources available. Again, the intention is that these tasks are enjoyable and purposeful.  These are generally set on a Friday and due the following Friday, but we can be flexible - better late than never - and better a bit done well than nothing done at all. Children will be praised in class and rewarded with Dojos for their efforts.


Summary of suggested expectations - 

Reading:  4 to 5 times a week, with details in Reading Record, totalling 40 to 60 minutes over the week.

Spelling:  up to 12 words practised  each week. About 3 x 5 to minutes. 

Times Tables: 2 to 3 times a week for 5 to 20 minutes.

Maths Whizz: 1 to 3 sessions of 10 to 20 minutes each week . 

Extra tasks: 15mins to 45 mins most weeks. 



Year 4 Reading Record Bookmark

When you listen to your child read, there are a number of things to remember:

  1. Make it fun! Use different voices and take it in turns read to each other. Children should try to read every day for 15 minutes and ideally 3 times a week with an adult.
  2. Ask questions about the text, the characters, the plot, the setting, the style of writing, and the words. Anything to get them to think about what they are reading and to consider the deeper messages hidden in the subtext – use the questions on their reading bookmark to help you. There are also some questions on the Bethany homework tab which may help.
  3. Read a wide range of writing – from comics to newspapers, poetry to plays, novels to Pokémon cards, and even just menus and signs when you are out and about!
  4. Look up individual words in a dictionary together to find out what they mean.
  5. Be a good role model for reading. This is the perfect excuse to curl up on the sofa, forget the chores, and read a good book yourself!


Recommended Reading List for Year 4: