Senior Infants took a trip to Airfield Farm to look out for all the signs of spring. We looked at the daffodils and all the other flowers that are beginning to bloom. We learned all about chickens and watched the eggs being collected. We even got to see the cows being milked. We finished off our visit with a trip to the play area. We had a great day and were all very tired after the long walk back to school!
Senior Infants have been doing lots of activities around the theme of ‘food’. We have been discussing the different kinds of foods, our likes and dislikes and how food is important for giving us energy and keeping us healthy.
For art, we used potatoes for printing. We used our imaginations to create flowers, bugs and even monsters!
In Aistear, children built restaurants using waffle blocks and lego. We also had an art station, where the children used clay to make pinch pots. Our very popular role-play area returned again, this time as a restaurant!
We also did some apple tasting. We tried different kinds of apples like Bramley, Gala and Pink Lady and discussed the difference in taste. Pink Lady was the most popular!
From the 21st to 25th of January, we organised a ‘Wellness Week’ in school. During this week, all classes made an extra effort to include activities which promote positive mental health and well-being. These activities included daily meditation, nature walks, mindful eating, mindful colouring and lots of discussions about our emotions and how to deal with them.
Jen, one of our support teachers, has just completed a course in children’s yoga and kindly offered to take each class for a yoga session. This was a huge hit with all the children.
We also had lots of parent volunteers who came to give talks on the areas of wellness that they specialise in.
Our first visit was from Claire, who works with essential oils and teaches people how to use them to support their emotional and physical health. Geraldine is in her 2nd year of Masters at UCD, studying Mindfulness Based Interventions, at the School of Psychology and she came in to do a ‘Mindfullness’ talk with both the senior classes and the junior classes.
Sally is a nutritionist and she came in to talk to some of the classes about the importance of food for keeping us healthy and giving us energy.
Michal has been practising Tibetan Buddhism for last 13 years and he came in to share his knowledge on the benefits of meditation.
Sara is a psychologist and she came in to talk to the junior and seniors infants about worries and how to deal with them.
And finally, Mischa and Caroline visited 2nd class to work on a project called ‘Song of our School’. This project included a walk around school in which the children were encouraged to stop and listen to all the sounds around them. They are now in the process of using these sounds to come up with a unique composition.
Senior Infants finished off a great first term in school with a disco in the hall. We loved dancing along to all our favourite songs and had so much fun. Check out our moves!
This year, for Science Week (November 11th -18th), the whole school decided to focus on the theme of space. The children loved learning about night and day, the planets, the life of an astronaut and much more. We read lots of stories which tie in with this theme like ‘Man on the Moon’ and ‘Alien’s Love Underpants’. The children also brought in lots of space fact books for us to read. We also did lots of fun ‘space’ writing activities like ’10 things I would bring to space’ and ‘My Alien Poem’.
Our ‘Space’ themed Aistear was so much fun. Our role play area was the International Space Station. The children loved monitoring space for asteroids and exploring the moon.
For sensory play we used play dough and lots of other materials like pipe cleaners, marbles and goggly eyes to make little aliens.
The children made super rockets, moon cars and space stations in using the junk art.
The children used their imaginations and the small world figures to explore space and all its’ wonders!
In Senior Infants, the theme for October has been ‘Houses and Homes’. The children have really enjoyed learning all about the rooms in a house, the different kinds of homes and the importance of families. Our Aistear was based around the ‘The Estate Agent’ and the children have had so much fun.
In the role-play area, the children have been taking it in turns to be an auctioneer at a property auction. They have also been working in an estate agent office, answering phone calls and helping the customers to find their dream homes.
In the construction area, the children have made some amazing properties, from boat houses to apartment blocks as high at the classroom ceiling!
For junk art, we have been working on bedroom dioramas. The children really used their imaginations to turn items like egg cartons into beds. We had a visit from Aoife’s 4th class to check out our brilliant work.
The introduction of a small world activity has been a huge hit. The children loved playing with the small figures in the toy houses. They loved to pretend that there was a birthday party happening in the houses or that a moody teenager was causing trouble!
Senior Infants have just started Aistear and we are having so much fun. Our Aistear activities this month are based around ‘The Optician’ and include; an optician role-play area, junk art, construction and play dough.
The Optician role play area is a firm favourite with the children and we are super at taking it in turns to be a customer, a receptionist and an optician. We have had costumers coming to the optician looking for prescription sunglasses, eye drops for eye infections and eye tests. We even had a customer come in with two lazy eyes!
We have loved getting creative with the junk art and we have made really cool eye machines. Some dispense glasses when you enter money, some are x-ray machines and others tell you which kind of glasses you need. Check out our junk art glasses and eye patches.
The children had the great idea to use the eye play dough mats as the x-ray scans and used play dough to show what was wrong with the eyes. Here are some eye scans showing water and sand in the eyes.
We also put on our hard hats and high-vis jackets and got to work building opticians offices, glasses, eye machines and even apartment blocks! We made one taller than Emer!
Senior Infants have had a great start to the year. We have settled in very well and are working really hard.
In Maths, we have been following the Ready, Set, Go programme. It is a very hands on programme and the children are really enjoying making sets and patterns using all of the lovely resources we have in school.
We had an absolutely fantastic Sports Day on the 27th of June. The sun was shining, we had some great volunteers and the children took part in all the activities with great energy and enthusiasm. We had a range of fun activities throughout the day. Brian and Ciaran from Gracie Barra Dublin, who run a Ju Jitzu afterschool, gave each class a crash course in the popular martial art. The children got their groove on in Sarah’s Zumba class, which was a huge hit. And, as always, the station activities were a massive success with the help of our fantastic volunteers. Aongus organised a ‘teachers versus 4th class’ game of dodgeball. Everyone got very competitive and the teachers came out on top. Of course, we finished the day with a well-deserved ice-cream. Thanks to all of the volunteers and staff for making it a great day! Ciara
This month, we have reintroduce the Playworks programme on the yard. Playworks is a form of structured play in which some children from 3rd and 4th class act as coaches and organise games for the other children to take part in. The games running at the moment are circle dodgeball, bandaid tag and hot potato. So far, the coaches are doing a fantastic job and the children are really enjoying it.
In February, we were very lucky to have a visit from two psychotherapists Judith and Michelle, who came in to teach us about the Buddy Bench Programme. The Buddy Bench Programme is a primary school-based, child-led and positive mental health programme that empowers children to foster friendships and illuminates loneliness in the yard. The aim of the programme is to help the children become more aware of others and enable them to practice kindness and empathy. The Buddy Bench motto is ‘”Look Up, Look Around and Look Out For Each Other’. Judith and Michelle brought along two Buddy Benches for us to keep, both made by the Men’s Shed.
After the visit, all classes came up with some ideas and designs for the Buddy Benches. These were collected by the Student Council who looked through them all and finalised the design. It was also the responsibility of the Student Council to paint the benches.
Soon, the beautifully decorated benches will be out on the yard. The children will be encouraged to monitor the benches for anyone who may be feeling sad or lonely and to offer them kindness and friendship. We know the children will really embrace this new initiative.
We were very lucky to have a lovely sunny day for our Sports Day, on Friday the 2nd of June. The children had a super fun and action packed day.
We split the classes into different teams for the stations activities which included an obstacle course, races, a football shootout and parachute games.
Mr. Sin, a Tae-kwon-do instructor, came in to do some lessons with the older children. They had great fun practicing their kicks!
Things got very competitive with the tug of war and long jump. Look at the concentration on the children’s faces.
After a hectic day, the junior infants headed out to our lovely garden for some yoga and meditation.
The smoothie station was a big hit. The children were very tired from running around, so it was nice to have a break and a refreshing, healthy drink.
Thanks so much to all the parents who volunteered on the day and made donations for the smoothie station.
Junior Infants had a great time on their trip to Glenroe farm. It was our first time going on a bus together and we were so excited. When we got the farm, we left our bags in a big barn and went to play in a HUGE playground.
We had so much fun on the swings and the slides and we really worked up an appetite, so we headed back to the barn for our lunch.
After lunch, we were brought on a tour around the farm to see all the animals. We saw cows, goats, ducks, geese, chickens, lambs, turkeys, deer, donkeys and horses. We even got to hold a baby chick, called Nugget, and a baby rabbit, called Candyfloss. We listened so nicely to the farmer, we stayed close to our teachers and parent helpers and we had a super day!
Junior Infants have been learning all about Italy this May. We made passports and took an imaginary trip to lots of different places in Italy. We went on a Gondola in Venice, took photographs of the leaning tower of Pisa, visited the Colosseum in Rome, threw a coin in the Trevi fountain and even walked around the old buildings in Pompeii. We couldn’t leave Italy without tasting all the yummy pasta, pizza and gelato! Look at the postcards we made to our families.
For art, we made delicious pizzas with all our favourite toppings. We also learned about Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel. We wanted to know what it was like to paint something on a roof, so we stuck some paper under our tables and tried to draw some pictures. It was very hard!
We were very lucky to have special visits from Giovanni’s mum, Milena, and Matteo’s mum, Stella, both of whom are from Italy. They told us about the places they are from and taught us some Italian. Milena taught us about the Monk Seal and the Alpine Ibex and Stella told us the story of Romulus and Remus and also a story about two monsters! The children absolutely loved these visits. We even got to taste some Italian bread sticks. YUMMY!
Ciao for now!
This week, Ciara’s Junior Infants had a special visit from Maya’s dad, Colin. Colin came in to talk about the Jewish festival of Passover. He told us the story of Passover and explained how it is celebrated. He showed us a story book about Passover and a Seder plate. We even got to taste the special matzah bread which is eaten over Passover. The children thought it was really yummy!
Ciara’s Junior Infants have just started a new 3 week block of Aistear and our new theme is ‘Plants’. We have a ‘Flower Shop’ role play area, a creative station, a sensory gardening station, a construction station, a writing station and a playdough station. The children are loving this theme so far and are really using all the ‘plant’ related language we have been learning the past few weeks. Have a look at us in action.
In March, Junior Infants have been learning lots about people who help us. We were very lucky to have some of our parents come in to visit us and tell us about their jobs and how they help people. Our first visit was from Sarah, Nina’s mum. Sarah is a psychotherapist, who works with children. She told us about her job and how people come to her to talk about their feelings. We played some fun games too.
Next, we had a visit from Fiadh’s dad, Dave. Dave is a fire fighter. He explained all the different jobs that fire fighters have to do and gave us some fire safety information. Dave brought in lots of equipment to show the class and even let the children try on his helmet!
Ciara’s Junior Infants and Aongus’ Second Class have become super friends since starting Reading Buddies last month, so we decided to go on a ‘Spring Walk’ together. We paired up with our buddies and walked around to Balally Park, keeping a close eye out for any signs of Spring. We noticed the cherry blossoms and daffodils in bloom, the birds singing loudly whilst busy making their nests and the smell of fresh cut grass, not to mention the lovely warm weather. Our buddies made a huge effort to get to know each other better on the walk to the park and they had great fun playing together in the playground. We hope to do lots more fun activities together in the future.
Ciara’s Junior Infants have just started a new Aistear. Our theme for this Aistear is ‘Animals’ and the children are really enjoying it so far. In junk art, the children have really been using their imaginations and creating x-ray machines, medicine and other inventions that could be used to help animals. They have been having great fun in ‘The Veterinary Surgery’ role-play area taking on roles like animal owners, receptionists and vets. They really enjoy looking after the sick animals. In small world we have been using Lego and small toy animals to create zoos and animal hospitals. The children have also enjoyed making farms using play dough and waffle blocks. Thank you to everyone who sent in resources for this Aistear. Look at how much fun we are having!
Junior Infants have been doing lots of fun activities this month. We have added a new station in Aistear where we test different materials to see which one makes the best ramp for our little cars.
In Maths, we have been playing a fun game called ‘The Sweety Jar Game’. Children roll the dice and place the correct number of counters into the sweety jars. Each day, the children have a different ‘goal number’ with which to fill the sweety jars.
We have also paired up with Aongus’ class for some buddy reading. The children loved making new friends with the 2nd class and we are looking forward to more weeks of reading with our new buddies.
Aistear is the curriculum framework for children from birth to six years in Ireland which involves learning about a particular theme through play, discovery and discussion. Ciara’s Junior Infants have just started Aistear and we love it! Our themed for January is ‘Toys’. The children have been busy making different toys using junk art and playdough. The ‘Toyshop’ role play area has been a great hit and the children are really using their imaginations to come up with different situations for the Teddy Bears picnic.
We are learning all about new and old toys for the month of January. We learned lots from each other’s show and tell presentations. Kitty brought in her mum’s old toy doll which was made entirely from soft material. Sofia’s modern doll on the other hand was made out of plastic. We learned that old toys did not need batteries. The owner had to improvise. We have been exploring toys in Aistear, learned songs about toys and even designed our own toy inventions in art.
This month, we were very lucky to have a visit from Fiona and Ollie from Dogs Trust. Fiona helped us to think about all the things that dogs need to be happy and we talked about how looking after dogs can be hard work. Fiona explained to us that we must always ask a dog’s owner before we pet it and she showed us how to pet it in a safe way, without scaring the dog. Ollie was happy to let the children pet him!
A special thanks to Jessica (Second Class teacher) for organising the visit!
Last year, the current second classes planted lots of yummy vegetables in the school vegetable patch. The brussels Sprouts and leeks were finally ready to be harvested so Junior Infants did the job. Anna’s mum Laragh helped us to dig up the vegetables and the children helped to pick all the brussels sprouts off the stalks. It was very mucky and very fun! The children all got to bring home some brussels sprouts to have for dinner.
Our theme for Aistear in Junior Infants this month is “The Home.” We’ve learned that there’s all different sorts of families and houses but the common thing between each is love. We have had lots of fun playing home with the doll houses and role play area. We made lots of things you would find at home using our playdough. During art, we made lovely wallpaper and curtain patterns.
For Science Week 2016 Junior Infants examined four different types of materials to see which would make the strongest house for the three little pigs to live in. It linked in perfectly with our Aistear theme for this month ” The Home.” We had lots of fun exploring, building, discussing and predicting. The four materials we tested out were paper towels, tin foil, card and building blocks. We tested out the strength of our houses using Neola’s hairdryer (The Big Bad Wolf!) In the end we concluded that the building blocks were the best material to use as the hairdryer didn’t blow these houses down. Take a look at all the fun we had being scientists!
We have started up Playworks again on the yard and it is already a big hit. Playworks is a programme which involves organising games on the yard for the children to play. Our 2nd and 3rd class students have been trained as coaches and they take it in turns to come out to the junior yard and coach the games. The games taking place at the moment are; Animal Tag, Racing, Basketball Shoot, Switch and Chalk Drawing.
Junior Infants have been learning all about the number 1 this week. We had great fun searching for buttons with 1 hole in the sandbox. We decorated a number 1 template using buttons, sticks and counters. We played with board games which involved tracing the number one. We coloured in number one templates beautifully and we practised writing the number one on our mini whiteboards.