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Junior Infants have had a wonderful few weeks settling into ‘big school’ and they have been working so hard. In maths, we have been learning how to sort objects according to their colour, shape and size. In art, we have been practicing our fine motor skills and our scissor skills, each child made their own octopus. Keep an eye on the website in the coming weeks to see more of our activities.
Second Class have settled in to their new school year very comfortably. We have all got to know the new routines quickly and we have enjoyed getting down to work. Here is an example of some art work we completed using oil pastels. First we explored leaves, collected some and then discussed how they change during autumn when they are losing their chlorophyll. Then we chose autumn coloured pastels to create our own.
Sixth class have been learning about ancient buildings and ruins in Ireland. We read about the most famous ruins, such as Glendalough and Trim Castle and we recreated them using Lego. We then went for a walk to see an unusual ruin in our locality! This ruin is called ‘The Bottle Tower’ or ‘Hall’s Barn’. It was built in the 1740s during a year of intense famine in the country. It is a miniature replica of The Wonderful Barn in Leixlip.
Although Sports Week was a little bit different this year, it was just as much fun as always!
We went on a scavenger hunt.
We did some yoga with Jen and Jenny.
We did some very tiring HIIT stations on the Astro Turf.
We boogied on down in Zumba with Carla from Pound Fit.
We had a dance party on the Astro.
Some amazing Irish athletes sent us a video message to wish us well.
And we finished off the week with a well deserved ice-cream.
During May, we celebrated Earth Day at school and we all learned about the beautiful planet that we call home. We ran a whole school poster competition with ‘Helping Our Planet’ as the theme for the competition. Here are some of the posters that won from the different classes. Congratulations to all who entered the competition, the walls of our school have been really brightened up and lots of helpful messages have been shared!
We’ve planted, germinated, watered and taken care of lots of growing things in Second Class this term. It’s been great to watch the seeds sprout and see how the different plants grow. We’ve grown lettuce, spring onion, spinach, carrots, broad beans, tomatoes, garlic and two different types of sunflowers. Everyone got to take home a plant this week to care for over the next few weeks or months. Nature has been a great focus over the past few months and complemented our studying of Earth and Biodiversity perfectly.
Last week Aongus’ Second Class were lucky to get a free walking trip to Airfield. We walked up in the fresh air enjoying the sights of Dundrum village as we went. It was a 20 minute walk. We saw a lot of biodiversity including some very large trees in the gardens of the house and we think one of them is a Sequoia or Giant Redwood, they are from the largest family of trees in the world. We noticed that the gardeners had planted a lot of new and different vegetables in the garden. There were also a lot of broad beans similar to those we have planted at school and in our classroom, and we saw artichokes as well! We also looked at the walled garden and the beehives nearby. There was a lot of different insect life there as well as extra birds probably because of the many wild plants that have been let grow to encourage pollination, just like we are doing at school on our green area. After visiting the farm animals which included the Jersey Cows, we stopped by the playground and zipline. We’re very grateful to Fiona and the staff at Airfield for facilitating our free visit.
This week the children learned a lot about the different parts of a food chain and why they are so important to all of us animals. They learned vocabulary such as Producer, Consumer, Predator, Herbivore, Carnivore and Omnivore. For their homework the children made a poster containing a food chain which they had researched. They really did brilliantly with this task. A few of the Food Chain posters are posted below.
In Second Class we have started learning about Biodiversity. We’ve been thinking about our ‘Beautiful Earth‘ and our ‘Colourful Earth‘. Today we tried to find as much diversity in our plant life as possible by focusing on different colours. We were very successful and put our colour samples together on a ‘Colourful Earth’ display card. Sinéad pointed out to us that we have a once rare flower growing in our small but diverse green space, the cowslip. We tried not to take too many samples so as to leave food for the insects and bees as well as leaving opportunities for the bees to collect pollen.
The Student Council arranged some fundraising activities for Daffodil Day March 2021, and we were so thrilled and delighted to see so many people getting involved. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone so much for their generous donations!
The Student Council sent this letter earlier this week.
“Dear parents of BETNS,
As this Friday, the 26th of March is Daffodil Day, we will be fundraising for the Irish Cancer Society. Our target goal is €800, which is an average of about €2 per person, but you can donate as little or as much as you like.
We will collect online and with pots that we will leave in the classrooms on Friday. The students are encouraged to wear yellow or something Daffodil related on Friday. Throughout the week, there will be Daffodil Art and the children can bring in Daffodils to decorate their classroom if they want.
The Student Council “
We will update this post with new photos and the amount we raised when it is all counted.
We thought we would invite our school community to get involved in a fun challenge. Earlier in the year the Getty Museum challenged people to recreate famous pieces of art using everyday household objects (and people or pets). We thought we would try our own Ballinteer ETNS version of this challenge.
So how will it work for our school’s Masterpiece Challenge?
- First choose a famous piece of art you would like to recreate. Inspiration could come from a famous painting, a sculpture, stone work, pottery… Take a look on some art gallery websites online and see what you can find!
- Look around your house and find household objects to use for your recreation. You can have people and pets in your recreation also.
- When you have created your masterpiece, send a photo of it, along with a picture of the original art, to email@example.com.
- All masterpieces will then be hung here in our virtual gallery on our school website!
Have fun! We look forward to seeing your imaginative works of art!
Check out our wonderful masterpieces below!
In Ballinteer Educate Together N.S. we speak languages from all over the world. This month some of our multilingual students helped us to choose new books for our library in 18 different languages! Over 60 new dual-language books arrived this week.
This year our school took part in Imagine Dundrum’s Community Art Project. Lots of local schools took part creating artwork for the season. You can visit our school’s banner on the plaza outside Dundrum library. Thank you to Tom and all the organisers for inviting us to get involved.
During Science Week, we conducted several different experiments. We looked at designing and creating the best container to ensure an egg would not crack when dropped from a height. We looked at what happens when milk is mixed with soap and how different molecules react with each other. We chose certain materials e.g. paperclips and straws and had to build a bridge spanning 30cm . Finally, we were fortunate enough to have Jennifer from GSETSS come in and do some great experiments with us. We looked at energy and used a balloon stuck to a straw to demonstrate different types of energy- kinetic and sound. Jennifer also showed us how lungs work by putting a marshmallow in a syringe. We rounded up the day with a classic- M&Ms in hot and cold water to see how colours dissolve in different temperatures. It was a great week and we really enjoyed exploring, experimenting and working together.
Since October, the children in Graham and Muireann’s fifth class have been engaging in the Writing Workshop once or twice a week. This is a time where the children can write about any topics of interest to them, and can practice their creative writing (narrative, poetry, diary entries) at their own speed. There are Five Stages of the Writing Workshop.
Prewriting is when you are thinking about and planning your piece of writing.
Drafting is the first time you write it.
Editing is when you read over it again and correct your mistakes.
Revision is when the teacher corrects it for you, and finally, when all that is done, the children move on to publish their final work into a book!
Today in Aongus’ 2nd Class we came up with a list of nine characteristics or attributes a good friend might have. Then we tried to decide which of these would be most important in a good friend. We used a ‘Diamond Sorting’ technique which is an active learning method. The children decided which characteristics might go at the top of their diamond and why, and also decided what should go at the bottom and why. There was some good debate about what a word like ‘cool’ or ‘beautiful’ might mean to different people. The children first worked in pairs, then with their pod and then we sorted them out as a whole class. We realised that a good friend may not always be happy and that maybe you need to be a very good friend to them in that moment. Caring, Kind and Helpful were characteristics that were thought of as very important.
Muireann and Graham’s fifth class were learning all about the counties, rivers and lakes of Ireland! We integrated our Geography work into our Art and we created topographic maps of Ireland using salt dough. We moulded the mountain ranges, and painted them using the colours of a physical map : Green for low lands, yellow for higher land, brown for the tops of mountain ranges. We then added in a few rivers and lakes. We included the Shannon, Lough Neagh and the Three Sisters (The Barrow, The Nore and The Suir!)
On the last day of September, 2nd Class had an interesting Zoom conversation with Margaret who works with the DSPCA shelter near the Dublin mountains. She told us lots about what the Dublin Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals does and the children were able to ask some of their own questions. We found out about the interesting and unusual animals they have given shelter to and also how they help animals that are in difficulty.
Second Class took a trip out to the park at the back of our school recently to identify some features of Autumn in our neighbourhood. The two trickiest things on the scavenger hunt were the Squirrel and some Fungi, but we got them! We also collected some twigs and leaves to create our hedgehog collages.
Our classrooms and corridors came alive again this September.
On Wednesday, 24th June we were so proud to be congratulating our first graduating class of Ballinteer Educate Together. The students of Orlaith’s Sixth Class, along with their families and teachers, celebrated a virtual graduation filled with memories. Many of these students have been with us since the school’s opening in 2012 and so it was an emotional night for everyone. We will miss them all but know that they are more than ready to meet the challenges ahead in secondary school. We know that there are great things ahead of this history-making class!
Before clocks, watches and phones, we used a sundial to tell the time. What is a sundial? It’s an ancient instrument that uses shadows cast by the sun to show the time. And today, a sun sundial makes a great feature or structure in your garden. The best bit is, it’s fun and easy to create your own, personalised sundial!
Here’s what you need and how to make it:
- Find a thick, sturdy stick
- 12 rocks, pebbles or stones
- Some paint or a marker pen
- A watch or clock (just to get you set up, then you can use nature’s clock)
- Start by numbering the rocks 1 to 12, you can paint numbers on them, or paint each one a different colour.
- Find a sunny spot that you can return to throughout the day. If you have a garden, this is perfect.
- Place the stick in the ground so that it stands upright.
- Using your existing watch, check where the stick’s shadow is every hour and mark this using your rocks.
- As every hour passes, place a rock in the spot that matches the time so that it’s in the stick’s shadow. After 12 hours, you should be left with a circle of rocks around your stick.
And that’s all there is to it.
Send us a picture of your finished sundial!
Using only a pack of cards or a dice, see can you find or make up a fun maths game. Share you maths game instructions or a video of how to play the game with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. The winner of May’s maths challenge will choose the maths problem-solving challenge for June, our last challenge of the year.
Here are two maths games Órla played at home. Why not give them a try?
10 familiar songs from our whole school singing assemblies are waiting. We would love to see your videos of you and your family joining in with some of our school songs. If you have a favourite Ballinteer Educate Together song that you would like to hear, please send us your requests : )
Here is a sample of some impressive work being submitted online in 4th Class. The objective was to find an animal and investigate a unique feature or skill that it has.
There’s some very interesting reading here about different animals including Pandas, Puppies, the Lyrebird, Sea Otters, the Vampire Squid and the Mozambique Spitting Cobra!
Also in here is a snap of Orest’s reaction to the music piece Rhapsody in Blue as well as Rijin’s prize winning Art Competition bicycle! Some of the projects can be downloaded at the bottom.
We are all learning how to adapt to this new mode of learning and we will hopefully pick up some useful skills along the way! This week some children were practising their typing skills as well as learning how to use software such as Word and Powerpoint.
http://tiny.cc/SeniorInfantsChicks Follow the link to see the first video of Senior Infants’ newly hatched chicks!
The chicks were due to hatch on Tuesday, but one hatched on Sunday, while three more hatched on Monday. No more have hatched today, and while fingers are crossed, senior infants have always understood that hatching is very difficult, and even if everything is kept just right, sadly, some of them may not hatch.
When they hatch, the chicks have a little “egg tooth” on the tip of their beak which they use to chip out of the shell. This falls off a couple of days after hatching. See if you can spot an egg tooth!
They have been moved to a “brooder” where they have food, water, warmth, and air, which all living things need to survive.
If there are 11 eggs, and 4 have hatched, how many are left?What would you name these little chicks? We won’t know if they are boys or girls until they grow up!
Friday, 29th May: Final Art Challenge. Congratulations to Lilla Barta from Fourth Class who won our final art challenge with her beautiful collection of three pictures. We think you will agree that Lilla is a talented artist and a fitting winner for our last challenge. Thank you so much to all our student artists. We have enjoyed your art so much over the last months. If you have been inspired by the Daily Art Challenge why not try this challenge during the month of June. We would love to see your June artwork. Send to us at email@example.com
Thursday, 28th May: Willy Wonka’s Factory – Invent a Sweet! Congratulations to Kitty Thornton from Second Class. Kitty invented a fantastic kitten-making lollipop! We think this would be a very popular new sweet in Willy Wonka’s Factory. Remember that today, Friday is the last in our daily art challenges. Thank you to all those who have taken part since the beginning.
Wednesday, 27th May: Princes and Princesses. Congratulations to Sophie O’Driscoll from 4th Class for her fantastic and very original peg doll prince and princess! We loved that Sophie chose a new medium to explore today’s theme. Well done!
Tuesday, 26th May: Giant Flower Sculpture. Congratulations to Margherita Di Lena from Junior Infants for her fantastic winning lego construction of a giant daisy!
Monday, 25th May: Robots! Theo asked us to design, draw or build a robot and didn’t you do well?! Congratulations to Dorothy in Second Class whose fabulous entry ‘Duplo Riding His Tall Weird Rainbow Car‘ made us smile!
Staff Profile Pictures: Thank you to all our talented students who helped Órla to surprise our teachers, SNAs and staff with new profile pictures for the school website. We were so excited and chuffed to see your beautiful work. Thank you all! Visit http://www.ballinteeretns.ie/teachers/ to see our new staff profile pictures as drawn by our students.
Here are just some of the other fantastic portraits Órla received:
Friday, 22nd May Art Challenge: Movie Characters Congratulations to Theo Quinn from Junior Infants for his fantastic entry Buzz from Toy Story! to infinity and beyond Theo!
Thursday, 21st May Art Challenge: Favourite Toy Congratulations to Lottie O’Mahony from Fifth Class who sent us today’s winning artwork. Her favourite toy? Roller blades! Beautiful work Lottie and well done to all our fantastic entrants.
Wednesday, 20th May Art Challenge: Favourite Planet Congratulations to Aditya Mule from Junior Infants who wowed us with this incredible picture of Planet Earth! Thank you to all our art challenge entrants. Remember, our daily art challenge finishes next week on Friday, 29th May. Since we started the daily art challenge, we have received over 800 pieces of art! We hope that you have had fun making and creating. We have loved sharing your artwork. What has been your favourite theme?
Tuesday, 19th May Art Challenge: Disney Characters Congratulations to Niall Bianchini from First Class. His Yoda picture was chosen as today’s daily art challenge winner! Well done Niall!
Monday, 18th May Art Challenge: Day Out With Grandparents/ Family Congratulations to Karma Khedr from First Class for winning today’s challenge with this beautiful picture of her family’s day out in Bray! We loved that Karma included lots of detail and colour in her art.
Friday, 15th May Art Challenge: Favourite Animals Congratulations to Danika Sanyal from Senior Infants. Look at Danika’s beautiful picture of her four favourite animals! Danika has selected a new theme for Monday’s art challenge: A Day Out with Grandparents/ Family.
Thursday, 14th May Art Challenge: Bumble Bees! Congratulations to Oliver Kirwan from Junior Infants who won today’s Bumble Bee art challenge. Oliver’s picture is really beautiful and comes with a sad true life story!
Wednesday, 13th May Art Challenge: Fun Land! Congratulations to
Bláthnat and Mia from 5th Class who worked together online to create this fantastic Roblox Fun Land! Really creative work girls – well done!
Tuesday, 12th May Art Challenge: Marvel Characters. Congratulations to Séamus O’Mahony from Senior Infants for his incredible collection of Deadpool art that earned him today’s art challenge title! Séamus will choose tomorrow’s art challenge theme. One of our favourite challenges so far – well done everyone!