It is such a treat to be given the opportunity to teach a handful of year 4 clubs again this year. Each of our teachers has one precious group for an hour a week, and we treasure our time with them.

The clubs sessions give the children’s maths a proper boost – based on speedy recall of number facts and a thorough explanation and consolidation of the curriculum content. We do extend their learning too – some of our year 4s are completing tasks originally set for year 7s and 8s – but it is confidence we care about most.

The second half of the lesson is where we focus on English. Our aim is to tidy up any bad habits – hand grip, handwriting, presentation – and to consolidate their concept of a sentence. Whilst fixing all of this we teach the content with passion and imagination. They will love story-writing by the end our time together, banishing their fear of the blank page. We even dip into poetry appreciation…

At home, we recommend you start sifting through the App Store (apologies for lack of android links), looking for speed-based number games. Click here for our favourite tables app. If your child doesn’t know their tables to 12x12 yet, then give them a tables poster to put next to them while they complete the game. Soon they won’t need to look anymore as the number facts will have gone in! The 3x3 grid in the test section should be completed in under 10 seconds. It doesn’t take long if the game comes out for a minute or so most days.

And finally a good reading programme needs to be in place. Click here for an excellent website – sign up for free – where reading lists are given for each age group and the first chapter of each book. An e-reader is worth investing in as children are so familiar with the technology. Go for a standard model, as web access only offers the opportunity for secret online gaming when you turn away…

If your child is a reluctant reader, or if you simply prefer it  – then read aloud each night to take the pressure off. You will find that they scan the words as you read them, their ability to infer will improve as you chat about the characters, and they will learn to self-correct little slip-ups that sometimes knock out the sense of a sentence.

We do hope this is helpful. Click on the Tutor Clubs at the top of the page for more information about Year 4, and if you need anything further then go to the Contact page.

We can’t wait to get started in September!