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Exploring the Polar Regions in Aistear

Junior Infants are loving the exploration of both the North and the South Pole at the moment!


The Post Office Theme Junior Infants

We have finished with our Post Office Aistear Theme now in Junior Infants. The children had great fun at the Role Play area, putting stamps on envelopes, posting letters in to the post box, delivering mail around the classroom etc. The Junk Art station was a hive of activity, with children creating post offices, letter boxes, post vans, airplanes and lots more! The Writing Table was busier than ever, with lots of children eager to write letters and cards for friends in the class. At the Small World area, the children had fun driving vans and trucks around the village full of packages, parcels and letters. There was great engagement from all!

Junior Infant Drama Sessions with Paula

The children are really enjoying their drama sessions with Paula, the drama teacher. She read them the story “We’re All Wonders” by R.J. Palacio last week and today they imagined what it might be like to blast off into space! Paula had speakers and star light effects to make it a magical experience. The children were zooming around the classroom, like rockets and shooting stars and then floating like weightless astronauts on the moon. Everybody also took a turn to share something about themselves that makes them unique, just like the boy in the storybook. We are looking forward to more fun filled sessions with Paula over the next few weeks.

Junior Infants Update

The children are really enjoying the theme of “Home” for Aistear the last couple of weeks. They particularly love the Home Corner, with the kitchen, dining and living room. They have taken on the roles of parents and children, chefs and baby sitters. They have been cooking lovely meals for each other, looking after the baby dolls and chilling out on the sofa! The doll’s house has also been a popular activity. We even had a reenactment of the fairy tale, The Three Little Pigs, with a wolf trying to blow the doll’s house over! Other Aistear activities have included construction with Lego, play dough and Junk Art.

Our Fine Motor skills activities in the mornings are continuing to go well. The children have enjoyed various activities such as geoboards, lollipop stick patterns, jigsaws, button pictures, peg boards and more.

In Maths, we have been working on our 2 D shapes and also on pattern. The children have been creating their own patterns using two different colours. We are now moving on to the concept of ‘more’ and ‘less’. We will be looking at and comparing two sets of objects, and using one-to-one correspondence, to see if they contain the same amount, or if they have more/less.

We have also been learning about the Season of Autumn. We made leaf rubbings using the leaves we collected on our Nature Walk a few weeks ago. We were learning all about the hedgehog and how they like to hibernate for the winter. Today, many of the children took home their clay hedgehogs which they made last week.


At the Doctor’s Surgery

Junior Infants have been really enjoying their first Aistear theme of “The Doctor’s Surgery”. They particularly love the Role Play area. The receptionists are extremely busy at their desks taking calls, making appointments and greeting patients as they arrive. The doctors and nurses have been run off their feet looking after all the patients with their various ailments and injuries!

Other play areas have included the Play Dough station, where the children have made thermometers, ambulances, doctors and patients. At both the Construction Station and the Junk Art station the children have let their imaginations run wild. We have had amazing creations, including a doctor’s surgery, an otoscope, a monster’s hospital, robots, ,lots of towers and much more!

It has been great to see that both classes have really gotten stuck in. They are building confidence, developing their vocabulary, getting to know one another and most importantly, having lots of fun!

Lisa and Yvonne


Junior Infants – Off to a great start!

Junior Infants have settled in really well to the routines and daily life of school. They have been busy learning about rhyme and syllables in English, learning about 2-D shapes and also about sorting items by various properties (size, shape, colour etc.) in Maths, and in SESE they have been learning all about themselves and their body. We are starting Aistear next week and our theme is the Doctor’s Surgery. Keep an eye on the website in the coming weeks for photos of this structured play time in action!

See below some photos of the children working on the nursery rhyme ‘Humpty Dumpty’. They worked hard on their cutting skills to, firstly cut Humpty Dumpty up, and then to put him back together again with the help of some plasters.

See also some photos of the children’s sorting work during our Maths lessons. Lovely group work and discussion took place as the children talked about different ways objects could be sorted.

Five Senses Fun in First Class!

First Class have had a great start to the new school year! We have settled in really well and are enjoying lots of learning and fun activities. We have been learning “All About Me” across a few curricular areas. In History we were discussing our personal history, examining pictures of baby toys, comparing what we can do now, with what we could do as a baby, and trying to guess who is who from our cute baby photos! In Science we explored the Five Senses. We imagined what it might be like to be missing your sense of sight by doing some blindfolded drawings. We learnt about the amazing Helen Keller and all about the Braille alphabet. We wrote our names in Braille using lentils and even created secret messages! We had some fun exploring our sense of touch by trying to feel what an object is and describe it without looking at it. We went on a Senses walk to see what we could see, hear, smell and feel along the way!



1st Class blast off into Outer Space !

1st Class were learning all about Outer Space for the last couple of weeks. During Science week we visited the Planetarium in the Mill Theatre and got a sense of what it might be like to really blast off into space! We read the picture book, “The Darkest Dark” by Chris Hadfield and enjoyed some of Hadfield’s videos about life on a space station. We also learned about Neil Armstrong’s visit to the moon.

The children created amazing art work of the solar system. Using marbles and paint we created some colourful paper which we used to make the planets in the solar system.

To consolidate all this learning the children engaged in some space themed play and construction activities. The children most certainly had a blast! Have a look at the photos to see some of our creations!

Entering the Planetarium

Autumn Activities in 1st Class

Lisa’s 1st Class were very busy in Term One. You can see a selection of photos of their art work and activities here.

After enjoying the story of Fantastic Mr Fox the children drew their very own fox using oil pastels. Didn’t they do a great job?!

During the autumn months we collected all types of leaves, sketched some of them, made leaf rubbings, made leaf creatures and much more!

We enjoyed the Enormous Turnip story and followed this up with a sequencing activity which involved lots of team work. Then the children created their own little turnips and pumpkins using some orange play dough.

Halloween was lots of fun in 1st Class this year. The outfits were super! As part of our morning meeting, 1st class had a super spooky spider web greeting on the last day of term. It was quite tricky to untangle at the end!

1st Class celebrate Chinese New Year

To celebrate Chinese New Year last week, the children in 1st class had great fun learning all about China. We read the story of the Chinese zodiac animals and discovered in which year we were born. Some of the children were born in the Year of the Rabbit, others were born in the Year of the Tiger or the Dragon!

For SESE, the children carried out some stations activities based on the topic of China. They played a fact matching activity game, they tried the “Chopstick Challenge”, they completed a fact file on the country of China and they also attempted to build the Great Wall of China out of Lego!

During Art class the children made some Chinese style fans using paper plates, lollipop sticks and paint. They turned out fantastic! We also made some paper lanterns to decorate the hallway.

Happy Chinese New Year!

1st Class are busy measuring in Maths!

1st class have been very active in Maths class this week! We have been learning about length, width and height. We have been making predictions and then measuring various items around the classroom. We used non-standard units of measurement such as cubes, links, hand spans and strides. Today we tried measuring with a standard unit of measurement, the metre! We used a piece of string, which was exactly one metre long, to measure the doors, windows, desks and even the width of the entire classroom!

Windy Weather in 1st Class

First Class were learning all about air and wind. We learned about the history of windmills, what they were used for and also about modern day wind turbines.
We discussed the pros and cons of windy weather and made posters to display this information. Some of the pros the children came up with were that wind is good for flying kites, drying clothes on the line and wind surfing. Some of the cons included damage to trees and rough weather at sea.

We investigated the force of air in Science class by testing a range of materials to see which could be moved by blowing at them. Some objects were easy to move and others, although we huffed and we puffed, just would not budge! Some items, such as a battery, were easier to move on their side rather than standing up.

Next we made some origami paper boats and had races across a basin of water. Some children found it easier to blow the air without a straw and others preferred the straw. Finally we had great fun, playing a game of air football across the tables!

Science Week in 1st Class

First Class had a busy day today learning lots about Science. First we learned some interesting facts about the solar system. We then work on some space themed problem solving in Maths class. Later we were invited by Lucy’s 5th Class to see a science demonstration, called “Elephants Toothpaste”! 5th Class students showed us that when you mix yeast, water, washing up liquid, food dye and hydrogen peroxide, they create a chemical reaction, that really does look like a giant toothpaste tube being squeezed out! After that we went back to our own class and  created some art work to represent the solar system. The children used marbles to create an interesting effect on their planets. I will share some photos of the finished work later, as they are not quite completed yet!

A super day of science!

Autumnal Art Workshop

We had a visit from a visual artist, Caroline Byrne who carried out a wonderful workshop entitled “Connection to Time and Place”. Caroline showed us how to create wonderful little characters out of natural items that can be gathered during autumn. She showed us how we could make little homes for the characters too. We used bees wax to stick pine cones, conkers, acorns, leaves and seeds together to create little elves, fairies and much more. It was amazing to see the children’s imaginations come alive with ideas! They had a great time and were very proud of their pieces of art! Many of the children plan to place the characters in their garden or window at home. Some children plan to place them into the ground in the hope that one day a tree might grow from their seed artwork!


Birds of Prey talk for 1st Class

Last Tuesday, 1st class had a visit from Ian Patterson, who told us lots of interesting facts about birds of prey. He brought in two of his birds, Fluffy, the long eared owl and Bob the falcon. Although Fluffy had the most amazing big bright orange eyes, we learned that  owls cannot see very well in the daylight. We also learned that they fly almost completely silently due the type of feathers they have. This makes them excellent hunters. Some of the children got the chance to put on the leather glove and wait for one of these amazing birds to fly and land on their outstretched arm! It was a wonderful experience for all!