Year 3 is the first year of Key Stage 2. The children are now usually taught sitting at tables where they listen to the teacher and get to practice the concepts taught on their own or in pairs. In Year 3, most children can solve one-step and two-step problems involving numbers, money or measures, including time. They build on their understanding of place value to partition three-digit numbers, round two-digit and three-digit numbers to the nearest 10 or 100 and position numbers on a number line, helped by images such as a counting stick or use of interactive ICT tools.
The majority of children read and write proper fractions and can derive and recall addition and subtraction facts for numbers to at least 20 and learn by heart the 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10 times-tables. They use these facts to derive division facts and to carry out multiplication and division mentally.
Most children can draw and make 2-D shapes and 3-D solids. They make shapes on grids and reflect these shapes in a mirror line, and identify and complete shapes with reflective symmetry. By the end of the year most children can read scales and measure to the nearest division with increasing precision and accuracy. They use standard units to measure length, weight and capacity. In addition children can read the time on a 12-hour digital clock and to the nearest 5 minutes on an analogue clock.
The tasks for the Year 3 readers are to develop reading stamina and fluency and to widen their reading range across fiction, poetry and non-fiction. They’ll often discuss books or texts in small groups and ask questions about what they’re reading. This is a critical year for moving from a primarily phonics- based spelling approach to one that relies upon the child’s memory and the accuracy of spelling high frequency words increases.
Children in Year 3 also learn organizational methods that help them prepare for more complex writing tasks. They’ll create maps, webs, and Venn diagrams to plan their work. They’ll write reports, creative fiction, and personal narratives. They’ll also be asked to take more responsibility for the writing process, including revising, editing, and proofreading.
Year 4 is the second year of Key Stage 2. The children are now usually taught sitting at tables where they listen to the teacher and get to practice the concepts taught on their own or in pairs.
Most children have a good understanding of place value and they begin to make connections in mathematics, understand and use the inverse relationships between the operations and derive and recall a wide range of number facts. They are becoming more secure in using mental and informal written methods of calculation for all four operations.
At the start of Year 4, the majority of children are rapidly gaining confidence and fluency in literacy, they are now securely established in Key Stage 2. These learners can access a wider range of fiction, poetry and non-fiction texts independently. They rely less on adult choice and suggestion. In addition to listening to teachers and other adults read, for example on CD, children need time to read silently for extended periods to develop fluency and stamina. For most children, the balance of attention in reading will have fully shifted from decoding words to comprehending subject matter. This control over literacy skills enables them to develop their personal preferences in reading and writing in and out of school.
As in reading, Year 4 is marked by growing confidence, control and fluency in writing fiction and nonfiction. They begin to use research tools, such as a dictionary, encyclopedia, library and the Internet, to gather information independently on a topic. Most importantly, they start to learn to organize this information into paragraphs, essays, projects, and presentations that help students synthesize their learning — although their work is appropriately far from "perfect." They start to develop a writing style where their personality comes through. Children are aware of features that writers use to provoke reactions in readers and they have gained confidence in selecting forms of writing for different audiences and purposes. They have begun to use success criteria in evaluating their own writing.
Year 5 is the third year of Key Stage 2. The children are now usually taught sitting at tables where they listen to the teacher and get to practice the concepts taught on their own or in pairs. At the start of Year 5 most children have an understanding of numbers that include negative whole numbers, decimal numbers and fractions. They have a growing understanding of many mathematical concepts, including equivalence, estimation, proportion, scaling and angle and they are confident at calculating mentally and use place value to manipulate and partition numbers.
During Year 5, children continue to consolidate and apply their knowledge of number facts to include numbers with up to two decimal places, and refine their written methods of calculation for all four basic operations (adding, subtracting, multiplication and division) so that they recognise and use more efficient methods.
In addition, most children can read timetables and part numbered scales accurately, and use 24-hour clock notation and a calendar to calculate time intervals.
At the start of Year 5 the majority of children have gained independent control of literacy. The challenge in Year 5 is to use this increased fluency and confidence to read and write extended texts in all curricular areas. Children need to widen their range of reading so they develop new tastes as well as pursuing established personal preferences. The reading curriculum introduces children to a range of genres they may not choose for themselves, for example longer novels by significant and classic children's authors, stories from other traditions and cultures and longer classic poetry.
Talking and reading continue to provide the foundation for writing. At the same time, Year 5 learners are able to draw on a range of secondary sources. Teachers emphasise the purpose and audience for all forms of writing. They encourage children to be experimental and adventurous and, wherever possible, give them choice and control over their writing. Children learn to develop and refine their ideas in writing and are able to summarise and shape material and ideas from different sources to write convincing and informative non-narrative texts. They organise their writing into paragraphs and start to use adverbs and conjunctions to organise cohesion within them.
They use language to create specific effects such as emphasis, humour, atmosphere, and settings and characterisations to engage readers' interests.
Year 6 is the fourth and final year of Key Stage 2. The children are now usually taught sitting at tables where they listen to the teacher and get to practice the concepts taught on their own or in pairs.
At the start of Year 6 the majority of children have well-developed counting skills, secure knowledge of number facts and a range of calculation strategies, mental and written. They use mental and written methods of calculation and use a calculator efficiently and accurately where appropriate. Most children have a strong understanding of numbers and the number system includes positive and negative whole numbers, common fractions and decimal numbers with up to three places.
At the start of Year 6, reading and writing are rapidly becoming confident, automatic skills for the majority of children. The reading curriculum includes longer novels, classic texts and significant authors as well as sophisticated picture books appropriate for this age group.
In addition by the end of Year 6, the majority of children are secure in the different stages of the writing process and can review their own work critically. They choose different planning tools for a range of writing. They understand the need for re-drafting at organisational level for a whole text as well as surface revision of spelling and punctuation. They work consciously at writing as a reader. The challenge in Year 6 is to embed the skills and knowledge acquired over the primary years into learning that transfers to the next key stage - and lasts a lifetime.