November 20 2022

October News from Ms. Olson’s Class!

Welcome back to Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants Class blog! We were so busy in October and had such fun exploring our themes – Space and Halloween!

In Aistear, we loved launching our rocket into Space in the home corner. The mission control manager would complete our take off checklist and then we would countdown from 10 and shout ‘BLAST OFF’ as our rocket hurtled into Space. We loved shaking the rocket and banging the tin foil to replicate a noisy rocket! Once we had landed on the moon, it was time for the astronauts to put on their space suits, helmets and jetpacks and see what they could find! We also enjoyed our other Aistear stations – we made solar system jigsaws, made playdough aliens and astronauts, sequenced our nursery rhymes and played with rockets and astronauts at the moon sand tuff tray station! We were very creative when it came to the art station as we made alien spaceships and decorated them with stars and gems!

   

During the last two weeks of October, we had so much fun in the Halloween Fancy Dress Shop. The shop assistants had to answer the phone and help the customers find a good costume. The customers tried on the costumes in the fitting room and paid for them at the till. Sometimes they had to return their costume so they had to make sure they kept the receipt! We enjoyed playing small world too as we set up all the houses in the town and played trick or treating! We did some nice creative activities too including sequencing ‘The Life Cycle of a Pumpkin’, making Halloween ‘CVC’ words and designing a Halloween costume.

   

In English, we continued to learn our Jolly Phonics and we started to learn some tricky words! We love singing along to the Tricky Words Songs on YouTube. We also enjoy playing our Jolly Phonics matching games and finding the sounds and tricky words that our teacher hides around the classroom. We are getting very good at blending little words too and we use our ‘tap and stroke’ method to do this. We tap out the sounds on our hand and stroke them together to blend! We are continuing to practise our fine motor skills each day and we are enjoying learning how to write the letters with our sand, whiteboards, playdough and rainbow letters stations. We are also getting very proficient at writing our names! This month we read and explored the stories – ‘Whatever Next!’ by Jill Murphy and ‘Room on the Broom’ by Julia Donaldson.

In Gaeilge, we explored the theme ‘An Scoil’ (School) and ‘Oíche Shamhna’ (Halloween). We love singing the songs, listening to the stories and conversations and playing the games on our interactive programme – Bua na Cainte.

In Maths, we have been doing lots of work on our counting and practising the concept before and after. This month, we were learning how to sort objects, make patterns and make sets of objects and identify which sets had more / fewer or the same number of objects. We also continued to develop our one-to-one correspondence by matching numbers to the correct set of objects and enjoyed playing the button game, animal hunt and snail trail to practise this skill. We continued to practise our number formation and learnt about the 2D shapes. We had great fun programming our little robot, BeeBot, to go to our selected 2D shape. We also ran a ‘Have you got Maths Eyes?’ competition in our class and had lots of amazing entries. Thanks to all of the children and their parents for working so hard on these and congratulations to our winners!

      

In S.E.S.E, we learnt about our solar system and the names of all of the planets. We explored the life of Neil Armstrong and watched cool videos of the moon landing in 1969 as well as current videos of life in space as an astronaut. We did some rocket experiments too – we used a balloon, a straw, some sellotape and a piece of string to explore how the force of air can propel the rocket along the string and we used a fizzy vitamin tablet to create a film canister rocket. You can watch the videos of our experiments on our Twitter page – @MsOlsonsClass. We had a special visitor in to talk to us too – a big thank you to nurse Siobhán for answering all of our questions. In the second part of the month, we learnt about the story of Halloween and its traditions. We worked as a team to create a skeleton and we tasted some Barm Brack and one lucky person found the ring and got to make a wish! We also learnt about pumpkins and the life cycle of a pumpkin. We even had a few pumpkins in our class!

         

We did lots of Art this month. We made autumn trees using broccoli to print the leaves, alien spaceships, rocket ships, silly pumpkins, wicked witches and flying ghosts! We also made lovely Halloween bookmarks for a competition. Take a look at all of our lovely artwork!

        

In Music, we enjoyed learning nursery rhymes and songs. We particularly liked ‘Zoom Zoom Zoom – We’re Going to the Moon’ on YouTube. We also learned plenty of spooky Halloween songs about witches! We did a little Halloween concert for assembly and you can see the videos on our Twitter page. In P.E., we’ve had lots of fun with Coach Steve practising our ball skills and with Deirdre during gymnastics.

On our last day before the midterm break, we had a brilliant day in our fancy dress costumes! We went to the cake sale and bought lots of tasty cakes. We also watched the film, ‘Room on the Broom’. What a month in Junior Infants, we hope you enjoyed reading our blog!

 

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on October News from Ms. Olson’s Class!
October 12 2022

Our First Month in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

Wow! We can’t believe we have completed one whole month in Junior Infants! We are loving being in school, have settled in so well and made lots of friends. On our first day, we were delighted to walk into our new classroom with our parents and we had lots of fun playing with the toys with our new classmates. Here are some pictures from our first few days of school.

 

In September, we learnt all about ourselves and the doctor. Every morning we do Aistear, which is structured playtime. There are four stations per week and we play at one station each day. We love playing in the home corner! This month, we enjoyed playing in ‘The Doctors’ Surgery’, ‘The Toys’ Hospital’ and ‘The Opticians’. We were given a role to play and had to act out the part that we were given. We also enjoyed playing in small world. In small world, we had to set up a town and act out different scenarios using wooden people. Some of the scenarios included going to the doctors or calling an ambulance to our home. Another station that we enjoyed doing was playdough. We were given themed playdough mats and had to add playdough details to them. We had to make doctor’s instruments like a stethoscope and we had to add glasses to people’s faces! We usually have a cut and stick station too to practise our cutting skills such as sequencing the nursery rhymes that we are learning. We also made cool glasses when we were learning about the opticians – we coloured them, cut them out and added some nice stickers to them! Sometimes we have a construction station. We made hospitals out of stickle bricks this month. In our final week of September we enjoyed playing with the baby dolls. We learned how to change their nappies, change their clothes, feed them and hold them carefully! On Fridays, we have freeplay. This means we can play with any of the toys in the classroom. We just love playtime in Junior Infants!

 

In English, we started learning our Jolly Phonics! We love listening and singing along to the Jolly Songs as well as listening to the sound story and answering questions about it. Sometimes our teacher hides the sounds around the classroom and we have to find them and think of some words that contain that sound. We also love playing ‘I Spy’ when we are learning our sounds. We have started to learn how to write these sounds too. We learn the formation through different stations including writing the sounds in sand, using playdough to make the sounds, doing rainbow letters and covering the sound with counters! When we finished the first group of Jolly Phonics, we started blending little words and learning our Tricky Words! We love the Tricky Words songs on YouTube. We are also doing lots of activities to develop our fine motor skills. Building up our hand muscles will make us excellent writers! We do fun activities each day such as cutting, writing our names, threading beads, playing with polydrons, pegboards, links, connecting cubes, chopsticks, jigsaws and playdough. We also love story time at the end of the day, some of the stories we read were, ‘The Gruffalo’, ‘The Gruffalo’s Child’, ‘Owl Babies’, ‘The Berenstain Bears go to the Doctor’ and ‘The President’s Glasses’.

We love our interactive Gaeilge programme, Bua na Cainte. We explored the theme ‘Mé Féin’ (Myself) and ‘Lá Breithe’ (Birthdays) in September. We learn songs as Gaeilge (in Irish) and listen to the conversations. We like learning little phrases that we can say to our friends and our teacher. We love the games on Bua na Cainte as they develop our listening skills! We also like when we get a visit from our dog puppet ‘Rolaí Polaí’ who only understands Gaeilge! He has been teaching us some simple conversation starters!

In Maths, we have been doing lots of counting games and we learnt how to sort objects into sets according to colour, shape, size, number and type of object. We learnt how to make patterns with two colours and two sizes (ABAB) and we’ve been learning how to write some of our numbers. We enjoyed playing maths games including ‘Happy Faces’ and ‘Sweetie Jar’ as they help us to develop one-to-one correspondence! We made sets of two items and we learnt the names of the 2D shapes – circle, square, rectangle, triangle, oval and hexagon. We played a fun feely bag game with the shapes and we went on a shape hunt around the school.

In S.E.S.E. (Geography, History and Science), we learnt about our families, our school and our journey to school. We had lots of fun learning about our school as we got to go for a tour of the school and we were given a personal tour of the principal’s office by Mr. Fingleton himself! Afterwards we worked together to draw an aerial view map of the school. We also learnt about the work of a doctor and an optician and identified lots of other professions and the places where they work.

In Music, we were learning lots of lovely nursery rhymes. We particularly like ‘The Grand Old Duke of York’ as we marched around the classroom as we sang! We love doing actions to all of our songs too. In Art, we made lots of lovely things including, self portraits, X-ray hands and Owl Babies pictures. We used a print technique with cotton pads to create our Owl Babies.

   

In P.E., we are very lucky to have Deirdre coming in to us each Tuesday to teach us gymnastics! We have been learning how to do different types of rolls, the forward roll, the backwards roll, cartwheels, the beam and the vault! We love Fridays too as Coach Steve from Shankill GAA is back in with us teaching us ball skills. We are learning lots of skills including bouncing, catching, throwing and even GAA solos! In S.P.H.E., we have been learning all about being a good friend and using our ‘Kind Hands, Kind Words and Kind Feet’ in school. We learnt that we are all different, special and unique – we investigated our fingerprints and handprints as a way of showing this.

   

We hope you enjoyed our blog, tune in next month to hear about what we got up to in October!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, S.P.H.E, Physical Education | Comments Off on Our First Month in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
May 31 2022

Eggcellent May News from Ms. Olson’s Class!

We had a very eggciting month in May as our baby chicks were born! We incubated ten chicken eggs for twenty one days and they hatched into six fluffy chicks called Fluffy, Little Timmy, Cheddar, Nuggets, Sockie and Sonny! Our eggs were incubated at 37.8 degrees celsius inside a manual incubator and we had to ensure there was enough water in the gauge to keep the humidity at the right level. Each day we turned the eggs at least three times and we numbered them on one side and put an ‘x’ on the other to ensure we knew which egg was which! We did all of this to minic what would happen in real life with a hen! Usually a hen sits on the eggs and keeps the eggs at the right temperature as well as turning them several times a day with her feet to ensure that they develop properly. The hen’s feathers are slightly damp underneath which ensures the correct humidity for her eggs too!

After about eight days of incubation we were able to see some veins inside our eggs when we candled them. This involving shining a torch through them in a dark room.

On day fourteen we candled them again to reveal much larger dark shadows that were beginning to move!

We did our final check on day eighteen which showed our chicks having great fun moving around in their little eggs.

For the last three days, we didn’t turn the eggs anymore in order for the chicks to get into the right position for hatching. On day twenty-one our first egg pipped and the rest soon followed. A ‘pip’ is when the chick makes its first crack of the egg with its egg tooth (a little tooth on the top of its beak which breaks off post hatch – specially designed for cracking shells), it does this to give itself more air to breath. Inside the egg, there is an air sac which the chick will breath from before it pips. After the chicks pipped their shells, it took about ten to twelve hours for them to fully hatch. Making the first pip is hard work and they need to have a good rest, absorb the rest of the egg yolk through their belly buttons (their food) and conserve their energy for their big hatch.

The hatch itself doesn’t take too long, maybe an hour at most! The chick has to work its way around the whole shell before using its back, neck, wing and head to push itself out of the shell. Inside the egg, the chick’s head is tucked up underneath its wing to protect it – hence why you might have seen the wing come out of the shell first in our Twitter videos – @MsOlsonsClass.

The chicks did not come out of the shell looking all fluffy! Their feathers were actually soaking wet!

We left them in the incubator until they had dried and fluffed up and then we transported them into a suitable box. We hung an infrared heat lamp over the box to keep them cosy and gave them lots of food and water. A normal lamp wouldn’t work as well as the little chicks would find it too difficult to sleep with the harsh light. The chicks grew so quickly and began to get their wing feathers after only a couple of days.

They could often be seen preening themselves to change the fluff to feathers! After five days our chicks went to a lovely new home with lots of other chicken friends but every student in the school had the opportunity to visit them before they left and were given a chance to name them!

Besides all of the chick news, we actually did so many other things in May that we need to tell you about too! In May we were learning all about transport. Each week our Aistear corner changed into a different vehicle! We had lots of fun playing in the bus, racing car, train and aeroplane! We constructed different vehicles using a variety of different materials including Lego, Duplo, polydrons and stickle bricks. We mapped out journeys in small world using our mats, vehicles and trains to travel around the town and we did some cut and stick activities including labelling a car, sorting vehicles by air, land and sea and labelling an aeroplane. We created our own small world group pictures and labelled all the vehicles. Finally we made 2D shape vehicles by drawing around shapes and creating a picture with them!

In English, our reading is steadily improving day by day and we are really enjoying reading our books. We are continuing to revise all our phonics, tricky words, Dolch words and blending words to enhance our reading skills even further. We were so lucky to be invited to paired reading with sixth class in our brand new outdoor classroom! We really enjoyed it! We are making great strides with our writing too. Monday to Thursday we do writing stations – we do one station each day. Usually our stations are: news writing; complete the sentence; sentence writing (we build the sentences with flashcards and then write them into our copies) and a CVC worksheet (consonant-vowel-consonant three letter words e.g. cat).  We are working on dictation at the moment, each morning we practise writing a few words and on Fridays we put those words together to make a sentence. We also love to do free-writing when we can write about whatever we like unaided. This month we focused on stories involving journeys. We liked listening to ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen and ‘The Snail and the Whale’ by Julia Donaldson.

In Gaeilge we are continuing to learn our songs, poems and phrases about An Aimsir (The Weather) and we are about to start Siopadóireacht (Shopping). In Maths we revised sorting and sorted shapes for up to four properties – colour, shape, size and thickness. We also did lots of addition sums within 5 and 10, practised our number formation, made sets within 10 and revised our 2D and 3D shapes. We also learnt about data and gathered and represented data about boys and girls in the class, eye colour, hair colour, shoe colour and favourite treats. We represented the data on pictograms.

Most of our S.E.S.E learning this month was learning about our chicks but we also learned about vehicles and transport and we looked at transport in the past. We learnt about the life cycle of plants and sunflowers before planting our own sunflowers too.

 

In Art we made egg box Dublin Buses and paper plate sunflowers as well as the couple of pieces we made in Aistear up above. Take a look!

  

In Music we learnt songs surrounding the theme of horse and ponies. The songs were lots of fun and we liked pretending to be horses whilst singing! In P.E. we were so lucky to have Coach Steve from Shankill GAA back in with us to do a few ball skills sessions. We also did gymnastics with our teacher and learnt how to do a forward roll as well as having our weekly sessions with Coach Ed.

We hoped you liked reading about our time in school during the month of May. We will have our final blog of the year up during the last week of school. We cannot believe our time in Junior Infants is nearly over! We are getting so grown up! Finally, here are pictures of hopefully many more picnics to come!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art | Comments Off on Eggcellent May News from Ms. Olson’s Class!
May 30 2022

April News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

Although April was a short month with our Easter Holidays, we packed a lot in! Our theme for the month was ‘Clothes and the Weather’.

In Aistear, we enjoyed acting out the story ‘The Scarecrows’ Wedding’ by Julia Donaldson in the Farm Home Corner. We also enjoyed having the wedding breakfast and party! We made ‘jewellery’ for Betty O’Barley from the story using beads and buttons in patterns. We designed a wedding cake for Harry and Betty using shapes in patterns and we started creating our own Betty and Harry scarecrows. In week two we enjoyed our time in the weather station. We pretended to be meteorologists and we gave the weather forecast on the television for our classmates. We made beautiful cloud and rainbow mobiles and we dressed paper dolls for the correct weather with a cut and stick exercise. Finally, we loved engaging with water play! We had lots of bubbly water, cups, jugs, bowls, spades etc. and enjoyed filling containers and pouring the water out!

   

In English, we are loving being able to read independently. We read our differentiated readers when we have finished our work. We have finished our Jolly Phonics now and we spent the time revising our vowel and consonant digraphs. We are working hard at our letter formation and we are beginning to write our news independently too. We enjoyed reading and engaging with the story ‘The Smartest Giant in Town’ by Julia Donaldson and loved the kindness displayed by the Giant to people in need. We had a lovely time dressing up as our favourite characters and bringing in our favourite books for Book Week. We went to the Book Fair and were able to get some new books. There was also a competition for the best costumes – won by Dogman and Little Red Riding Hood!

    

In Gaeilge, we’ve enjoyed learning phrases, songs and poems surrounding the theme of ‘An Aimsir’ (The Weather). In Maths, we started learning about money. Money is a tricky topic to grasp especially in relation to the idea that a 2c or a 5c coin is more valuable than a 1c coin even though they are all single coins! To teach this concept, we start out with coin tokens instead of real coins. A coin token has dots on them to denote whether it is a 1c, 2c, or 5c coin. We played a fun exchange game whereby we exchanged 1cs for 2cs and when we had enough – for 5cs too. Once we had grasped the idea of the tokens, we used real coins to play the game. We also had great fun investigating what real coins looked like, what symbols they had on them, how the coins differed on the back and we looked up where all the coins that we had came from! We also did some coin rubbings pictures, and played shop with Ms. Olson using real coins.

 

In S.E.S.E we finished learning about animals and the farm and made our own butter. We shook cream in a jar until it started to whip before solidifying into butter. We poured off the buttermilk, added some salt and spread it on some bread. It was very tasty! We were very lucky to go and visit the school pond to see our newts too. Thanks to our caretaker, Ogie, for showing us! We also learned about the weather and the water cycle. We enjoyed learning about different types of precipitation and investigated the different states of water – solid, liquid and gas.

 

In Art, we farm animals using paper plates and Easter cards for our families. We created a nest of eggs using potato stamps and decorated the eggs with little gems. We made finger print Easter Bunny silhouettes as well. We also completed our scarecrows that we had begun in Aistear. Take a look!

 

In Music, we continued to start our day with a song and we particularly liked the song ‘Cúig Ubh’ and ‘Jig-a-Jog Jig’! In S.P.H.E we completed the Stay Safe Programme and in P.E., we finished our dance sessions with Catherine Casey School of Dance and enjoyed learning our fundamental skills with Coach Ed. We also started doing gymnastics with our teacher. After our warm up, we do four gymnastics stations working on our jumping, hopping, rolling and cartwheel skills. We love doing ‘Jelly Belly’ as a cool down too!

On our last day of term, we had a lovely Easter egg hunt and we enjoyed colouring Easter pictures!

That’s all for now, check back in soon to see how we got on in May with our lovely chicks! Here’s a sneak peek!

    

 

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on April News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
March 29 2022

February News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

We had another busy month in Junior Infants! Our theme for February was Homes and Houses. In Aistear we had great fun doing lots of different activities each week. In the socio-dramatic play corner, we enjoyed playing in the kitchen making dinner; acting out the different parts in ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ and pretending to be the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf! We did lots of construction activities such as playing with Lego, Duplo, Stickle Bricks and Straws – we made things like houses for the Three Little Pigs, our own dream houses and different sized furniture for Goldilocks and the Three Bears. We enjoyed playing with playdough – we made furniture for houses; bricks, sticks and straws for the Three Little Pigs’ houses and different sized bowls of porridge for Goldilocks. We also practised our cutting and sticking skills whilst sequencing the stories of Goldilocks and the Three Little Pigs and designing our own houses. We also enjoyed acting out the stories in the puppet theatre and with the doll’s house in small world.

     

In English we continued to learn our Jolly Phonics and Tricky Words and we enjoyed playing phonics games. We enjoyed engaging with the book – ‘A Squash and a Squeeze’ by Julia Donaldson and we started reading our own differentiated readers! We are loving using our blending skills to decipher all the words in the book and we are making such progress. We participated in the ‘Write a Book’ competition and produced a fantastic book about a little polar bear cub called Fluffy and her friend, a snowy owl, called Snowy. We worked on our storytelling skills first through playing with Rory Story Cubes and then each person in our class suggested a sentence for our story. We worked really hard on the writing and pictures and sent it off to be judged. Fingers crossed!

   

In Gaeilge we enjoyed learning about ‘Sa Bhaile’ (At Home). We liked learning one song in particular ‘Dhá Éan Bheaga’ as it is the Gaeilge version of ‘Two Little Birdies Sitting in a Tree’! In Maths we followed on from partitioning and combining within five and learnt the number stories for four! We also enjoyed learning about capacity. We used the story of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ to investigate the how much each bears’ porridge bowl could hold. We also had a popcorn party for Goldilocks and had to decide which container would be the most suitable for holding the popcorn! We enjoyed eating the popcorn too! We also celebrated Pancake Tuesday in Junior Infants and enjoyed sequencing how to make a pancake before eating our own! Yum!

  

In S.E.S.E (Science, Geography and History), we learnt about  homes, magnets and electricity. We learnt about the different rooms in homes, things you might find in those rooms and activities that happen there. We looked at homes in the past and we did a class poll to see what type of home everyone lived in. We learned about electricity and we investigated making static electricity. We managed to make our hair stand up, we attached a balloon to a wall, we picked up pieces of paper using a balloon and we bent water in the tap using a balloon! We also had lots of fun exploring with magnets. We investigated a range of materials to see if they were magnetic and moved iron filings around a dish!

 

 

In P.E. we focused on the Games strand of the curriculum. We love playing our warm up games and then practising dribbling with unihoc sticks. We also worked on passing the ball to our partner, striking the ball into a goal, doing dribbling relays and we finished up the Games strand with a game of hockey!

In Art, we made lovely ‘I Love You to the Moon and Back’ Valentine’s Day cards for our parents. We also drew and painted our dream houses. In Music we learnt lots of songs about Teddy Bears including ‘I have a Small Teddy’; ‘Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear’; ‘The Three Bears’ and Tá Teidí Agamsa’.

We hope you enjoyed our blog, tune in next month to hear what we got up to!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, Physical Education | Comments Off on February News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
December 15 2021

November News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!

We had another busy month during November in Room 17!
In maths, we spent the month working on fractions – equivalent, improper, mixed number while also learning to add and subtract them. Lots of practice with real life problem solving with fractions helped us develop our understanding of this concept.

In English, we looked at the theme of narrative writing with the story ‘Out of My Mind’ and then explored explanatory writing through the theme of ‘volcanoes’. We learnt lots about how volcanoes form and erupt and even wrote our own explanations about volcanoes. We also practiced some more explanations about a variety of topics when working in groups – how does a chicken egg hatch, the water cycle, the lifecycle of a butterfly, the lifecycle of a frog and how do tadpoles grow – excellent explanations by all!

  

As Gaeilge, bhíomar ag foghlaim faoi na topaicí ‘An Scoil’ agus ‘Éadaí’. Bhí scéalta agus léamhtuiscintí againn bunaithe ar na téamaí seo. Bhíomar ag dul i ngleic leis na Briathra neamhrialta san Aimsir Chaite chomh maith le tús a chur ar an Aimsir Fháistineach. Bhíomar ag cleachtadh conas an chlog a léamh as Gaeilge freisin.

In SESE, we completed a lot of work based on the theme of ‘volcanoes’. We learned about how volcanoes form and the inner structure of them while also researching them using the iPads and completing a fact file about a chosen volcano.

 

We used the iPads to research facts about Italy and Roman life and completed fact files about each of them. We did another excellent job on our projects based on a figure from The Renaissance, with lots of wonderful research and presentation skills on show.

   

As part of Science week, we researched a famous scientist and completed a fact file about them. We also wrote some wonderful ‘Science week’ themed acrostic poems. We really enjoyed the ‘Balloon car challenge’, where we focused on the concept of forces. This month, we also learnt about the structure of the eye and the functions of these parts.

     

The highlight of the month was definitely the clay volcanoes we made and painted and then erupted by creating a chemical reaction.

 

We really enjoyed spending some time completing some ‘Hour of Code’ Minecraft tutorials on the iPads to introduce many of us to the world of coding.

We leant the song ‘Pompeii’ le Bastille i nGaeilge agus ‘Fanfaidh mé ortsa’ le Mumford and Sons freisin. 

In SPHE, we have been looking at the concept of ‘Friendship’ – exploring the benefits and the challenges faced within them. We also explored some scenarios to extend our thinking while also identifying what we look for in a friend.

In Art, we designed some Roman inspired mosaic artwork and Winter/Christmas themed snow globes.

In PE, we were very lucky to have Jonathan in from Leinster Rugby teaching  us some rugby skills and playing some fun team games to practice our skills. We also started cycling with Tony and Graham and we are really enjoying learning how to cycle safely.

Category: Fifth Class, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, S.E.S.E, Art | Comments Off on November News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!
November 18 2021

October News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!

October was another busy month in Room 17!

We were focusing on writing letters at the beginning of the month – highlighting reasons why schools should have drinking fountains. At the end of the month, we wrote some excellent Halloween acrostic poems and some spooktacular Halloween themed narratives for Ms Travers’ writing competition. In addition, we definitely have some future politicians amongst us as we presented some excellent arguments during some informal debates.

Sa Ghaeilge, bhíomar ag leanúint le na scéalta agus ag cur snas ar ár dtuiscint don Aimsir Chaite agus briathra éagsúla. Freisin, bhí an-spraoi againn le foclóir Oíche Shamhna a fhoghlaim agus roinnt dánta a ghabhann leis an téama seo.

In maths, we focused on the themes of Time and Lines and Angles and concluded this topic with some tangram work which we really enjoyed.

In SESE, we were busy learning about The Normans, The Solar System and examining the surface tension of water and the effect of acid. We also had great fun designing, making and testing our egg protectors for the ‘Egg Drop Challenge’ – with varying degrees of success! Although the definite highlight was the amazing projects we completed about ‘World Changing Women’ – great insights shared into many inspirational women!

     

We continued to learn some new songs -‘An t-Ádh Night’ by Pharell our latest addition. We’ve really been enjoying the music resources on DableDoo too!

We created wonderful self-portraits this month using our drawing skills and symmetry with wonderful outcomes. We also created some haunted scene artwork using our different paint mixing techniques and silhouettes.

Finally, as part of the school’s Well-being initiative and for this month’s theme of ‘Talking Care of my Body’ we made some wonderful dreamcatchers and made some tasty fruit skewer treats to enjoy!

We showed off our wonderful Halloween costumes on the last day before the Midterm – lots of happy smiley faces!

Category: Fifth Class, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, S.E.S.E, Art | Comments Off on October News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!
June 30 2021

Our Final Month in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

Wow! What a year it has been in Junior Infants! We have learnt so much and are now ready to go into Senior Infants at the end of August. We might have missed a couple of months of school in our second term but we surely made up for it online and when we came back to school. We ploughed full speed ahead with our literacy and we are now competent emergent readers! Everyone has made so much progress this year and it has been lovely to watch the children’s growth and development throughout the course of the year. Although the month of June symbolises the end of the year and a wind down to the holidays, we packed an awful lot of content in!

In Aistear, we loved playing in the Ice-Cream Parlour Home Corner. We pretended to be the shop assistants serving delicious ice-creams and sundaes and as customers we found it so tricky to pick our ice-creams from all the mouth-watering flavours in the ice-cream fridge! At the construction station, we enjoyed building ice-cream vans and making ice-creams out of playdough. We learnt about the life cycle of a butterfly through story and a cut and stick activity and we packed our suitcases with clothes for our holidays the following week with another cut and stick worksheet. It was great fun heading off to the beach in small world and making jellyfish mobiles using paper plates, paint, strips of crepe paper and bubble wrap at the art table. Probably our favourite stations of all were the exploratory play stations – we loved doing free play with sand, water and magnets!

        

In English, we continued to revise our Jolly Phonics, we learnt about the magic ‘e’ and we loved singing along to Jack Hartmann’s word family songs on YouTube as well as the letter songs from Have Fun Teaching. We continued with our writing stations and worked really hard at our free-writing this month. We are now able to write our news with very little support from our teacher! Our theme for the month was ‘The Sea / Summer’ and we read so many great stories this month including ‘Commotion in the Ocean’ by Giles Andreae, ‘Winnie at the Seaside’ by Valerie Thomas, ‘The Rainbow Fish’ by Marcus Pfister and ‘Tiddler’ by Julia Donaldson. We also enjoyed reading our own stories and we are progressing through the levels of our Oxford Reading Tree books at a great rate! If anyone would like to continue reading these over the summer, you can access them at https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/.

In Gaeilge, we finished off Éadaí (Clothes) and Siopadóireacht (Shopping) and have lots of fun singing the songs, learning the phrases and playing the games on Bua na Cainte. In maths, we revised lots of the topics and concepts we have learnt this year including sorting, 2D and 3D shapes, pattern, width and length, addition within 5 and 10, capacity and we had lots of fun doing a Maths Trail. We adored learning about spatial awareness with our friend BeeBot. He is a little bee robot that we had to code or programme to travel to certain places. Each day our table was given a new mat to navigate BeeBot around – these were a 2D shape mat, a 3D shape mat, an alphabet mat and an adjustable maze. You can check out some videos of how BeeBot is programmed on our Twitter feed @MsOlsonsClass. 

We did lots of fun S.E.S.E in June! In geography we learnt about the weather and recorded a week long weather diary. We had four days of lovely sunshine and one day of clouds! We also identified the signs of Summer and went back over what we knew about the four seasons. We learnt about clothes and sorted clothes according to season suitability and we learnt about the sea and some sea creatures. However, most importantly we learnt about water,  and water safety. In history, we looked at how we have grown and changed in relation to clothes, we identified what kinds of clothes we wore as babies and what we wear now. We really enjoyed doing lots of science experiments this month. We investigated our shadows outside in the yard, we identified items that we magnetic and we did some fun static electricity experiments with balloons. We made our hair stand up, we stuck a balloon to a wall, we picked up pieces of paper with a balloon and we even changed the direction of water! We also learnt about heat and the effect of water on materials.

   

June was a great month for making crafts! We made lovely painted butterflies, jellyfish mobiles, Father’s Day cards and a fingerprint keepsake to remember our Junior Infants Class. In Music, we sang lots of songs and listening to some classic pieces of music to identify their moods and tempo. Our favourite song to sing was ‘Little Red Riding Hood’.

   

June was a special month in our school because it was Active Schools Month. We had so much fun doing lots of sports in June with a special thanks to Ms. Woods for all the organisation of the activities. We had a fantastic sports day where we completed eight different activities. These were sack races, hurdles, long jump, target throws, an obstacle course, penalty shoot outs, egg and spoon races and teddy bear relays! It was so much fun despite the rain and we all got a medal at the end!

                     

Throughout Active Schools Month we continued to do our P.E., ball skills with Coach Steve from Shankill GAA and dance with Catherine Casey School of Dance but we also got to do some other fun activities including obstacle courses with Grainne and we had a very cool session with Bar Monkey!

            

We also had lots of fun in the sun during June with the good weather allowing picnics and great fun in the yard!

 

On the second last day we had an absolute ball on our school tour to Stonebridge Fields. We did lots of activities and played many games including an obstacle course, parachute fun and games, football, throwing and catching, skipping, chasing, Duck Duck Goose, Stuck in the Mud and during our freeplay we had fun making obstacle courses with the equipment and playing with the hula hoops! We also had a lovely picnic in the sun with some yummy crisps and ice-creams!

                     

Here we are on our last day of Junior Infants – silly faces and all, how time has flown!

What a fantastic year it has been despite Covid! I will miss having this lovely class but I know that the children will have a wonderful time with their new teacher next year. I wish you all a lovely summer break and the very best of luck in Senior Infants!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on Our Final Month in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
June 9 2021

Eggcellent May News from Ms. Olson’s Class!

We had a very eggciting month in May as our baby chicks were born! We incubated ten chicken eggs for twenty one days and they hatched into ten fluffy chicks called Toast, Big Foot, Eggbert, Pickle, Sunny, Sunshine, Lucky, Snowy, Egg and Potato! Our eggs were incubated at 37.8 degrees celsius inside a manual incubator and we had to ensure there was enough water in the gauge to keep the humidity at the right level. Each day we turned the eggs at least three times and we numbered them on one side and put an ‘x’ on the other to ensure we knew which egg was which! We did all of this to minic what would happen in real life with a hen! Usually a hen sits on the eggs and keeps the eggs at the right temperature as well as turning them several times a day with her feet to ensure that they develop properly. The hen’s feathers are slightly damp underneath which ensures the correct humidity for her eggs too!

 

After about eight days of incubation we were able to see some veins inside our eggs when we candled them. This involving shining a torch through them in a dark room.

On day fourteen we candled them again  to reveal much larger dark shadows that were beginning to move!

We did our final check on day eighteen which showed our chicks having great fun moving around in their little eggs.

For the last three days, we didn’t turn the eggs anymore in order for the chicks to get into the right position for hatching. On day twenty-one our first egg pipped and the rest soon followed. A ‘pip’ is when the chick makes its first crack of the egg with its egg tooth (a little tooth on the top of its beak which breaks off post hatch – specially designed for cracking shells), it does this to give itself more air to breath. Inside the egg, there is an air sac which the chick will breath from before it pips. After the chicks pipped their shells, it took about ten to twelve hours for them to fully hatch. Making the first pip is hard work and they need to have a good rest, absorb the rest of the egg yolk through their belly buttons (their food) and conserve their energy for their big hatch.

The hatch itself doesn’t take too long, maybe an hour at most! The chick has to work its way around the whole shell before using its back, neck, wing and head to push itself out of the shell. Inside the egg, the chick’s head is tucked up underneath its wing to protect it – hence why you might have seen the wing come out of the shell first in our Twitter videos – @MsOlsonsClass.

The chicks did not come out of the shell looking all fluffy! Their feathers were actually soaking wet!

 

We left them in the incubator until they had dried and fluffed up and then we transported them into a suitable box. We hung an infrared heat lamp over the box to keep them cosy and gave them lots of food and water. A normal lamp wouldn’t work as well as the little chicks would find it too difficult to sleep with the harsh light. The chicks grew so quickly and began to get their wing feathers after only a couple of days.

They could often be seen preening themselves to change the fluff to feathers! After five days our chicks went to a lovely new home with lots of other chicken friends but each class in the school got to visit them before they left and were given a chance to name them!

    

We were lucky enough to be sent updates too! Look at how much they’ve grown after only a week or two!

Besides all of the chick news, we actually did so many other things in May that we need to tell you about too! In May we were learning all about transport. Each week our Aistear corner changed into a different vehicle! We had lots of fun playing in the bus, train and aeroplane! We constructed different vehicles using a variety of different materials including Lego, Duplo, polydrons and stickle bricks. We enjoyed making a runway for our aeroplanes to land and take off from too. We mapped out journeys in small world using our mats, vehicles and trains to travel around the town and we did some cut and stick activities including labelling a car, sorting vehicles by air, land and sea and creating an aeroplane. Finally we made 2D shape vehicles by drawing around shapes, cutting them out and creating a picture with them!

        

In English, our reading is steadily improving day by day and we are really enjoying reading our books. We are continuing to revise all our phonics, tricky words, Dolch words and blending words to enhance our reading skills even further. We like doing our stations each week and we are making great strides with our writing too.  This month we focused on stories involving journeys. We liked listening to ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen and ‘The Snail and the Whale’ by Julia Donaldson.

In Gaeilge we are continuing to learn our songs, poems and phrases about Éadaí (Clothes) and we are about to start Siopadóireacht (Shopping). In Maths we continued to learn about money. This time we used real coins and had great fun investigating what they looked like, what symbols they had on them, how the coins differed on the back and we looked up where all the coins that we had came from! We also played the coin exchange game from our last blog using real coins, did some coin rubbings pictures, played shop with Ms. Olson and Mr. O’Connor using real coins and made towers of unifix cubes to denote each coin value! We also revised sorting and sorted shapes for up to four properties – colour, shape, size and thickness. Sorting for one property at a time was two easy for us so we sorted for two and three properties at the same time! We also did lots of addition sums within 5 and 10, revised before and after, more and less and revised our 2D and 3D shapes.

Most of our S.E.S.E learning this month was learning about our chicks but we also learned about vehicles and transport during Aistear time and we planted sunflowers too. Look at how they’ve grown – unfortunately they got a little bit dry over the bank holiday but we’re hopeful they’ll spring back to life (fingers crossed!!)

In Art we made egg box Dublin Buses and paper plate sunflowers as well as the couple of pieces we made in Aistear up above. Take a look!

In Music we learnt songs surrounding the theme of horse and ponies. The songs were lots of fun and we liked pretending to be horses whilst singing! In S.P.H.E. we completed our Stay Safe Programme and in P.E. we were so lucky to have Catherine Casey back in with us to do a few dance sessions as well as ball skills with Coach Steve from Shankill GAA. We also did gymnastics with our teacher, practising our jumping and rolling skills!

     

That must have been a record long blog but we had to tell you all about our chicks! We hoped you liked reading about our time in school during the month of May. We will have our final blog of the year up during the last week of school. We cannot believe our time in Junior Infants is nearly over! We are getting so grown up!

 

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, Drama, S.P.H.E, Physical Education | Comments Off on Eggcellent May News from Ms. Olson’s Class!
April 22 2021

March News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

We were absolutely delighted to return to school in March! It was so exciting to see all of our friends again and to get back into our school routine. We missed out on some great Aistear themes in January and February so we decided to do them in March instead.

For the first two weeks, we loved learning about the Polar Regions. First, we explored Antarctica and it was such fun playing in our igloo and searching for penguins in the home corner. In small world, we created group pictures of Antarctica sticking on cotton wool for icebergs and pictures of Antarctica animals. We investigated floating and sinking and we labelled the parts of a penguin. Then, we moved to the Arctic! Again, we loved playing in our igloo but this time we were in search of polar bears! We also built snowmobiles out of Lego and Duplo, created igloos with playdough and labelled the parts of a polar bear.

 

For the last two weeks of March, we explored the theme of ‘Homes and Houses’.  Our home corners we based on stories for this fortnight. We enjoyed acting out the stories of ‘The Three Little Pigs’ and ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’. In small world, we acted out the story of the ‘The Three Little Pigs’ and we did a sequencing the story cut and stick activity. We also made the three houses using straws, sticks and bricks. In the last week of March, we loved acting out ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ using our puppet theatre! We also constructed different sized beds and chairs using Lego and Duplo and did another sequencing activity.

In English, we continued on with our Jolly Phonics sounds – playing games and activities; and we really got to work at learning our Tricky Words by playing games and listening to Tricky Words songs. We also started our reading books. We were reading books online at home but it was so nice to be able to read physical books again! We are getting so good at our reading now. Our blending skills are really improving as we are practising our word boxes in school and at home for homework. Another thing that we have been really working on is our writing! We love to write our news and we are enjoying practising our letter formation and free writing. During free writing, we write about whatever we like totally unaided and then our teacher scribes what we have written underneath. Our blending skills really help with this as we sound out words to write them! We love storytime at the end of the day in Junior Infants and we have been enjoying listening to ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox’ by Roald Dahl. We’ve also read ‘The Emperor’s Egg’, ‘Lost and Found’, ‘The Polar Bear and the Snow Cloud’, ‘The Three Little Pigs’, ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ and ‘A Squash and a Squeeze’.

 

In Irish, we’ve enjoyed learning songs and simple phrases surrounding the themes of ‘An Teilifís’ (The Television); ‘Lá ‘le Pádraig’ (St. Patrick’s Day) and ‘An Cháisc’ (Easter). In Maths, we revised the content that we had been doing online on Seesaw – partitioning and combining for 4 and 5. We liked using the baseboards to sort objects into subsets to make the stories of four and five and we enjoyed playing maths games to reinforce these concepts. We’ve also been learning about data. We collected data in our class about eye colour, hair colour and number of boys and girls and represented it on a pictogram / pictograph.

   

In S.E.S.E, we learned about the seven continents. We adored listening to and singing along to ‘The Continents Song’ on YouTube! We learned about the Irish explorer – Tom Crean, who went on expeditions to Antarctica as well as identifying lots of facts about penguins and polar bears. We were fascinated to learn that penguins can hold their breath underwater for up to thirty minutes and a polar bear’s fur is actually translucent – it just appears white! We also loved looking at pictures of icebergs and the northern lights! When we explored the theme of ‘Homes and Houses’, it was fun to identify what type of home we lived in and to chat about the different rooms in a house and the items you might find in each room!

In Art, we made some lovely cards including an ‘I Love You to the Moon and Back!’ card for our mums for Mother’s Day and a potato print ‘Eggs in a Nest’ card for Easter. We also made a St. Patrick’s Day headband and an Easter Bunny picture. Each morning, we start our day with a song and there were so many songs we loved singing this month, however, our favourite had to be ‘Boa Constrictor’ because it is so funny! We did a little St. Patrick’s Day concert for our parents singing  ‘An Leipreachán’ (The Leprechaun); ‘Lá ‘le Pádraig’ (St. Patrick’s Day) and ‘Lámha Suas, An Feidir Leat? (Hands Up, Can You?). The videos can be found on our Twitter page – @MsOlsonsClass.

It was great to get back doing our GAA Ball Skills with Coach Steve from Shankill GAA and we’re having great fun learning a dance routine to ‘I Just Can’t Wait to Be King!’ from the Lion King. We will perform this soon and put it on our Twitter page! To finish off a great month back, we had a eggcellent Easter egg hunt on our last day of school! We are back for our last term now after our Easter holidays and are straight back to work! Stay tuned to hear about our April news! Bye for now! 🙂

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on March News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!