Year 5/6 Term 3 – ‘The Shang Dynasty of Ancient China’

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Dear Parents,

I hope you have had a lovely Christmas holiday! Our topic for term 3 is ‘The Shang Dynasty of Ancient China’ and the geography of China. We will be reading a variety of Chinese folktales and reading ‘The Firework Maker’s Daughter’ by Phillip Pullman during our guided reading sessions. We will also be learning about dragons and doing some creative writing based around them!

On Friday 27th January, we will be celebrating Chinese New Year! We will spend the day creating crafts and learning about how this is celebrated around the world. As this is a new topic, if you have anything you think might be useful for this topic (or Chinese New Year celebrations), it would be greatly appreciated!

Reading Please read with your child regularly, even if it is just one page.  Their books and book bags will need to be in everyday for 1:1 reading.  You may like to add a positive or helpful comment in their homework diary, but please acknowledge the fact that the book has been read by signing and dating in the comments space. A member of staff will be checking homework diaries on a Friday and children are expected to have read at least 3 times a week with an adult.
Spellings Spelling tests are every Thursday and your child will be tested on the ten spellings they selected in the previous week (from either the Year 3&4 or 5&6 curriculum spelling lists). Their spelling tests results will be recorded in the back of their books for them to share with you.
Maths Maths homework will be sent home on a Friday and completed for the following Friday. The homework set will either be based on their learning in class or mental maths questions.
Grammar Grammar homework will be sent home on a Friday and your child will have 2 weeks to complete this. The homework will be based on the grammar they will be learning within their literacy lessons.

Helping to enrich our topics

It is always great to have items or visitors that support our topic, so if anyone has any experience or items that may help us with any of the work above that we could hear about or borrow, we would love to see and hear about them.


Please can you make sure your child brings in a water bottle each day with fresh water; ensure all jumpers are labelled and bring a coat for the wet weather.

Many thanks for your continued support,

Mrs King

Reading at School and at Home

The Shang Dynasty of Ancient China’ Learning Map

Useful Websites

Questions you could ask your child about their learning this term

  • What dates did the Shang Dynasty span from?
  • Who were influential people during the Shang Dynasty?
  • How is Chinese New Year celebrated?
  • Which animal is the year 2017 going to be?
  • Which year were you born in? Which animal is this?
  • Do you know any characteristics of the animal whose year you were born in?

Possible home learning tasks

  • Make a presentation of the similarities and differences between modern day China and China during the Shang Dynasty? (Think about how people live, government, religion, dress, food etc.)
  • Make a model of a Chinese dragon.
  • Find out about why dragons are an important part of Chinese history and culture.