December 4 2023

October News from Ms. Olson’s Second Class!

We had a busy month in October as we explored two themes – Space and Halloween! In English we enjoyed reading our class novel ‘Flat Stanley in Space’ and learning some comprehension strategies including predicting and visualising to help us understand the story better. We were able to use these strategies later on in the month to help us to comprehend our class reader ‘The Witch’s Lair’. We continued with our literacy stations and moved onto guided work with our explanatory genre writing and worked together to write about the lifecycle of a pumpkin. We also explored narrative genre writing as we wrote Halloween stories for a competition. We had a winner for the story competition and another for the bake off competition on our dress up / cake sale day before the Halloween break! Here is our ring finder too from our barm brack!

 

In Gaeilge we enjoyed learning songs and phrases based on the theme ‘An Fomhár’ (Autumn) and ‘Oíche Shamhna’ (Halloween). We enjoy playing games to learn vocabulary and chatting with our partners as Gaeilge to develop our conversational skills.

In Maths we continued with our two warm up activities – table champs and daily challenge which we love playing and we started some new numbers concepts including addition, estimating, rounding, greater than, less than, equal to and subtraction. We continued learning about 2D shapes and starting learning about 3D shapes. We enjoyed playing games with playing cards and using concrete materials to learn about these topics. We also loved playing loop cards which test our addition and subtraction knowledge. We enjoy going to the maths table to work with the teacher on our Busy at Maths if we need some help or for just a quieter learning space. After we have finished we like taking an activity from the maths table such as geoboards, tangrams, addition and subtraction peg boards or 2D shapes for creating shape pictures.

  

In S.E.S.E we loved learning all about the different planets of the solar system and about the work of astronauts. We enjoyed watching videos of some astronauts in the International Space Station, learning how they sleep, move around and even how they use the toilet!! We created beautiful planet pictures in art using sponge printing and did some fun rocket experiments! We also learnt about Halloween and its origins as well as Halloween traditions around the world. Ms. Kelly organised a fantastic Halloween trail around the school for us too. We loved collecting items for our Autumn nature table and exploring all the different things using magnifying glasses as an early finisher activity.

     

In Art we made some really cool Halloween lanterns using a glass jar and crepe paper and patterned pumpkins. We also had to create our design for our Christmas cards fundraiser.

  

In Music we learnt the song ‘One Way or Another’ from Hocus Pocus 2. We also developed our skills of pitch, structure, duration, rhythm and timbre by singing ‘Bingo’ and ‘Skeleton Stomp’. We explored what sounds we could make using our bodies and our voices and made a rainstorm composition.

In S.P.H.E., we learnt that everyone is special and although we all have similarities, we also have many differences which show our uniqueness. In Religion, we continued our First Holy Communion preparation by learning about The Rosary and how Jesus healed people.

In P.E. we continued on our lessons with Coach Ed and we were delighted to start back with Coach Deirdre for gymnastics.

We hope you enjoyed our blog, tune in soon to find out how we got on in November!

 

Category: Second Class, Literacy, Numeracy, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, S.P.H.E, Physical Education, Religion | Comments Off on October News from Ms. Olson’s Second Class!
October 9 2023

September News from Ms. Olson’s Second Class!

Welcome to our first blog in Ms. Olson’s Second Class! We’ve settled in very well and are enjoying our time in our new classroom. Our theme for September was ‘Myself’ and we learned lots of new things exploring this theme across all of our school subjects.

In English we enjoyed sharing our news about our summer holidays before writing a short recount of where we went, who we saw, what we played and ate and what we did on our last day before starting school. We started our literacy stations where we work in small groups with a teacher learning about phonological awareness, spelling, comprehension strategies, genre writing and grammar. This month we are learning about explanatory genre writing and have worked together on a couple of shared pieces including ‘The Lifecycle of a Human’ and ‘How do we Breathe?’. Explanatory genre writing has tied in very well with our reader this month as we have read and explored two explanatory pieces called ‘Funny Bodies’ and ‘My Little Book of Calm’. We really enjoyed ‘Funny Bodies’ as it explains how our bodies do ‘disgusting’ things like produce snot and vomit!! ‘My Little Book of Calm’ explains how we can practise mindfulness and we’ve enjoyed trying out some of the tips including deep breathing! We love the end of the day just before we go home as our teacher is reading ‘Matilda’ by Roald Dahl to us.

In Gaeilge we have been exploring the theme ‘Mé Féin’ (Myself) and are enjoying learning songs, rhymes and phrases as Gaeilge including the ‘Hócaí Pócaí’ (Hokey Pokey). We are practising reading and writing as Gaeilge and working on our conversational Gaeilge too.

In Maths we revised some First Class content and are now really getting stuck in to Second Class work and loving it! When we were given the option of doing Maths or Art one day – Maths narrowly missed out in the vote! We enjoy starting our lesson with a daily challenge, our teacher writes a word problem on the board and we need to figure out the answer. We use skills like underlining the important information to help us decide what kind of question it is – an addition or a subtraction problem. Afterwards we play a game of tables champs which we adore or we play some counting games before moving on to the lesson content.  We use concrete materials and games to help us to grasp the concepts that we’ve been learning about including addition, rounding and estimation. Once the concept has been taught we reinforce our learning with our Busy at Maths book. We also enjoyed starting our mathletics programme on the iPads. We learned about 2D shapes too. We enjoyed playing games such as guess the shape and headbands using shape properties. We went on a shape hunt around the school and we made shapes using lollipop sticks, tangrams and geoboards.

         

In S.E.S.E. (Geography, History and Science) we learnt about the topic of growing and changing. We identified our needs for growth and investigated how we have changed since we were babies. Our parents very kindly sent in baby pictures of us and some baby artefacts for us to look at in History. We played a fun Kahoot! quiz on the iPads to identify which baby picture belonged to who and we really enjoyed it! We also learnt about our families and identified the members of our families for a family tree. We discussed different roles within the family and wrote a report genre piece on our family in Geography. Finally in Science, we learnt about our body parts and the functions of our organs. We also grew a class plant affectionately know as ‘Larry’ to investigate the process of growing and changing!

 

In Art we were inspired by Pablo Picasso to create abstract self-portraits. We used pencil to draw our self-portraits before painting them using bright colours and outlining them in black marker to make them pop! We also constructed family trees with cardboard and sticks that we found in the school grounds. We added pictures of our family members and tissue paper to depict leaves. We were delighted with the result and received so many compliments on them from other teachers and pupils!

    

In Music, we learnt the songs ‘Ireland’s Call’ in response to the rugby world cup and ‘When I Grow Up’ from Matilda the Musical in response to our theme. We are hoping to perform the latter for other pupils at an assembly. We have been engaging with our music programme ‘Dabbledoo’, looking at sounds in our environment and composing different sounds using body percussion. In groups we came up with compositions and designed symbols to accompany each sound. We performed them for the class and watched back a recording of our performance to analyse. In Drama we have been exploring the short film available on Disney + called Float. This film depicts the life of a little boy who can float and his father who hides him away from society because he is different. We really loved this film and engaged in different drama conventions such as still image, hot-seating of a character and conscience alley.

In S.P.H.E, we’ve been exploring the themes of friendships and how to be a good friend. We also identified similarities and differences between people and the uniqueness of each individual. We read a lovely poem called ‘Unique’ and we investigated our fingerprints and identified their pattern – loop, whorl or arch to show that no two fingerprints are the same. In P.E. we are glad to have Coach Ed back with us teaching us lots of ball skills in response to the rugby world cup and we are continuing ball skills with our teacher on our other P.E. day.

Finally in Religion, we have started our prep for our First Holy Communion by learning our prayers and engaging with our Grow in Love programme. We had our first visit to the church in September for our back to school mass and we are looking forward o a tour of the church in the coming weeks. Here are some pictures from golden time on Fridays to finish off our blog.

 

That’s all for now! We hope you enjoyed reading our blog. Tune in next month to find out what we got up to in October!

 

Category: Second Class, Literacy, Numeracy, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, Drama, S.P.H.E, Physical Education, Religion | Comments Off on September News from Ms. Olson’s Second Class!
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 22 2021

Merry Christmas from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

What a great month December has been in Junior Infants! We did lots of fun activities surrounding our theme – Christmas, and we were visited by our elf – Rudolph!

 

In Aistear, we absolutely loved playing in the Post Office / Santa’s Workshop Home Corner. During the first week in December, we wrote our letters to Santa and posted them to the North Pole in our very own postbox. We had to buy stamps from the Post Office first. Afterwards, the Post Person delivered the letters to Santa and his elves. Santa designed the toys in his workshop and the elves made and wrapped the toys. Once checked off by Santa, he packed his sack and delivered the toys to all the children. His reindeer helped him to fly his sleigh! In week two, we focused on sending Christmas cards in the Post Office!


We also enjoyed playing Small World in Aistear. The children set up their town and pretended that the post person was coming to deliver letters and parcels. In week two, we constructed Santa’s Workshop out of stickle bricks and pretended to be Santa and his elves working away making all the presents. We liked our playdough station as well, we made lots of cookies and cakes for Santa! We loved filling our stockings with toys from the Smyth’s Catalogue at our cut and stick station and we worked hard at making our Christmas cards and other art projects. During the last week of school, we had freeplay and enjoyed choosing our own toys to play with!

     

In English, we continued learning our Jolly Phonics sounds. We are improving everyday at learning our Tricky Words and our blending is coming along so well too. Soon we will be able to read little books! We enjoyed reading lots of Christmas and Winter themed books including ‘Bear Snores On’ by Karma Wilson, ‘One Snowy Night’ by Nick Buttersworth, ‘The Jolly Christmas Postman’ by Allan and Janet Ahlberg and ‘Stickman’ by Julia Donaldson. Our handwriting is really coming along too, we enjoyed writing a short letter to Santa as well as simple sentences in our copy books.

In Gaeilge, we enjoyed learning about ‘Caitheamh Aimsire’ (Hobbies) and ‘Ócáidí Speisialta – An Nollaig’ (Special Occasions – Christmas) using our Bua na Cainte programme. We love singing the songs, playing the games and listening to the stories.

In Maths, we learned about time. We focused on learning the days of the week as well as sequencing stories such as ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ by Eric Carle. We enjoyed playing lots of time challenges and we timed them by counting the number of claps it took to complete the challenge. We compared the times it took to do two different challenges when we played the game, ‘Who Finishes First?’. One child had to do an activity such as building a tower of unifix cubes whilst the other child had to do a physical activity such as jumping jacks. We had to guess who would finish first and then test out our theories! We also learned about the 3D shapes – cube, cuboid, cylinder, sphere, cone and pyramid. We did lots of different activities including shape hunts, the feely bag game, shape sorting, work with the BeeBots and constructing the shapes with playdough and sticks. We also revised our 2D shapes and length and practised our patterns on the iPads by playing a Topmarks Christmas Patterns game!

In S.E.S.E, we learned about the signs of Winter as well as learning all about the story of Christmas. We explored toys too – we compared toys from today and toys from the past, we investigated which toys are pulled and which are pushed and we even designed our own toys in groups before constructing them out of materials found in the classroom. On our last day of school, we made fake snow using poly sodium acrylate – the non-toxic substance found in nappies!

         

We did lots of Christmas art this month including Christmas elves, stained-glass Nativity scenes, cardboard angels, handprint robins, Christmas wreaths and Christmas cards! Take a look at our creations.

       

In Music, we learnt lots of lovely songs including ‘Jog Along Little Donkey to Bethlehem’, ‘Féach ar an Máinséar’ and ‘Here Comes Santa Claus’. In S.P.H.E., we learned about our senses and our families. We had lots of fun exploring our sense of touch by feeling different materials with and without a blindfold on! In P.E., we had lots of fun with Coach Gráinne – our favourite lesson being developing skills using balloons! We also did a fun run to raise money for our Student Council.

        

 

We also baked real cookies for Santa, but we decided they wouldn’t last until Christmas so we had to eat them ourselves!

 

As if all of that wasn’t enough, we performed our Christmas play – ‘Our First Nativity’ which we had been working so hard on for several weeks. We recorded it for our parents so that we could sit and watch it together. It was a roaring success! Afterwards, we had a lovely party to celebrate!

Thanks for reading our blog, we hope you enjoyed it. We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! See you next year!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, Drama, S.P.H.E, Physical Education | Comments Off on Merry Christmas from 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!
March 8 2020

The Polar Regions in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

In January, we learned all about the Polar Regions in Junior Infants. In Aistear we had lots of fun playing in both the Arctic and Antarctica home corner. We were polar explorers searching for different animals, we had to set up camp in the freezing climates and build igloos. It was lots of fun. We had fun playing with small world based in the Polar Regions and we did lots of cut and stick activities to learn about penguins and polar bears. We learned about floating and sinking and tested out different objects to see whether they floated or sank. We also worked as a group to create an Antarctica poster. We used twistables, pencils and cotton wool to create our posters and stuck pictures of different animals native to Antarctica on them.

In English we continued to learn our Jolly Phonics and we enjoyed playing phonics games. We have also been learning our tricky words and making silly sentences with them, which we read each day. We enjoyed engaging with the books – ‘The Emperor’s Egg’ by Martin Jenkins and ‘Lost and Found’ by Oliver Jeffers, both books being about penguins. We found ‘The Emperor’s Egg’ to be very informative and we learned many facts about penguins. We also started writing a book for the ‘Write a Book’ competition. We decided to write our story about a lost penguin. We all contributed a sentence to the story and then wrote it out in our neatest handwriting and drew a lovely picture to go with it.

In Gaeilge we enjoyed learning about ‘An Scoil’ (School) and ‘Caitheamh Aimsire’ (Hobbies). We liked learning about ‘Caitheamh Aimsire’ as we learned new vocabulary and sang songs and rhymes relating to toys! Toys were definitely on our minds in January straight after Christmas! In Maths we took a giant leap forward as we started learning how to partition and combine within five! We have been learning our number stories for all the ways we can make five: 0 and 5; 5 and 0; 1 and 4; 4 and 1; 2 and 3; 3; and 2. We also enjoyed learning about time and weight. We learned the days of the week; we did lots of sequencing activities, timed games, sorting items according to weight and did some heavier / lighter hunts and challenges.

In S.E.S.E, we revisited the theme of toys and we worked together in groups to design and make a toy which we then presented to the class. We learned all about Antarctica and the Arctic – we especially liked learning about penguins and polar bears. We learned about the Irish explorer, Tom Crean, who almost made it to the South Pole. We learned the names of the seven continents and we had such fun singing the continents song on YouTube.

    

In Art we made beautiful penguin and polar bear collage pictures.  In Music, we sang some lovely songs – our favourite being ‘Boa Constrictor’ which we sang for our grandparents on Grandparents’ Day. All of our grandparents thought the song was so funny as it is about being eaten by a boa constrictor! We also learned how to use body percussion to create music and using this we performed the rain song using just our hands to make the sounds!

We hoped you enjoyed our blog this month – stay tuned for February’s news!

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January 22 2020

December News from Ms. Olson’s Class!

Our theme for December was Christmas of course and we were delighted to be joined by our Elf on the Shelf – Snowflake and we loved opening our Advent calendar each day!

In Aistear, we absolutely loved playing in the home corner as it was the Post Office and Santa’s Workshop! First we had to write our Santa letters and post them in our very own post box! Then Santa himself read the letters and told the elves what they had to make in the workshop. The toys went through some serious quality control too before they were wrapped and put into Santa’s sack to be delivered to all the children. The Head Elf even had her clipboard out at one stage and sent some toys back as she wasn’t happy with the wrapping!! We also enjoyed playing small world as Santa had to deliver all the presents to the children with help from the reindeer on his sleigh. Those elves were getting quite hungry from all their hard work too so we made some playdough cookies for them to munch on in another Aistear station. Towards the end of December we actually made real chocolate chip cookies for Santa, however, we thought they might get a bit stale before he came so we had to eat them ourselves. Oops!! Finally we made 2D and 3D shapes out of marshmallows and cocktail sticks.

   

In English we continued to learn our phonics and practise our letter formation. We are also beginning to read short words using our tap and stroke blending method. Soon we will be ready to start reading short books! We enjoyed engaging with the stories ‘One Snowy Night’ by Nick Buttersworth and ‘Bear Snores On’ by Karma Wilson. We also wrote our own Santa letters as our handwriting is improving so much! In Gaeilge we were of course learning about ‘An Nollaig’ (Christmas). We especially loved singing the song ‘Tá Daidí na Nollaig ag Teacht Anois’. In Maths we continued to learn all about number – doing counting games, number games and writing our numerals, however, we also started learning about time. We loved learning ‘The Days of the Week Song’ and recording the time it took us to do an activity by counting the number of claps it took!

In S.E.S.E, we learnt about the signs of Winter. As it was Christmas we explored the theme of toys. We spoke about play spaces and keeping them clean and tidy, we discussed our favourite toys and we learnt about the differences between toys now and toys from the past. We sequenced the story of Christmas and spoke about Christmas traditions and we also explored and experimented with our five senses. We tasted different foods, we smelled different items, we played the feely bag game, we investigated sound with a tin and a rubber band and we played games to realise how important our eyes are and how we need to look after them. As a final little activity we made fake snow using the non-toxic substance from nappies – poly sodium acrylate.

We were very busy making Christmas in December. We made elves, Christmas wreaths, Christmas tree decorations, stain glass effect Nativity scenes, winter robins, angels and Christmas cards. Take a look!

 

In Music we sang some lovely songs including ‘Jog along Little Donkey’; ‘Féach ar an Mainséar’ and ‘Santa Claus is coming to Town’. We also listening to some pieces of music and responded to them through discussion and movement. We loved doing Dance with Ms. Casey in December – some of our dances can be found on our twitter feed @MsOlsonsClass and we got to perform on stage at assembly in front of Junior Infants, Senior Infants and First Class! We said a poem – ‘A Chubby Little Snowman’ and sang the songs ‘When Santa Got Stuck up the Chimney’; ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’ and ‘Jingle Bells / Bualadh Bos’. It was a lot of fun! Finally, probably the biggest thing that happened in December was we performed our Nativity play – Our First Nativity, for our parents. It was a roaring success and everyone was so proud of us because we had been practising so hard since midterm to put on a great show! We can’t believe that we are now in our second term of Junior Infants already but stay tuned as there is so much more to come in 2020!

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December 1 2019

October News from Junior Infants – Better Late than Never!

October was another busy month for the Junior Bunnies! Our theme for the month was ‘Clothes’ and of course ‘Halloween’.

In Aistear, we loved playing in the role play corner. For the first two weeks of October, we explored the story of ‘The Scarecrows’ Wedding’ by Julia Donaldson. We acted out the story whilst wearing costumes and at the end we had a party in the farmyard to celebrate the wedding. For the last two weeks we LOVED playing in the Halloween Fancy Dress Shop. We pretended to be customers and shop assistants buying, selling and even trying on costumes! It was so much fun (I think our best role play corner yet!) During Aistear we also did activities such as small world; constructing farms with stickle bricks, Lego and Kapla; threading beads to make jewellery for Betty O’Barley from the story; playdough and cut and stick sequencing activities such as ‘The Life Cycle of the Pumpkin’.

In English, we continued to learn our Jolly Phonics focusing on ‘h, r, m, d, g, o’. As well as doing our phonics activities as mentioned in our previous blog post, we started learning how to blend simple CVC (consonant vowel consonant) words using our tap and stroke method. We tap out each sound as we say them on our hands and then we stroke them together to blend them. We enjoyed reading the stories ‘The Smartest Giant in Town’ and ‘Room on the Broom’ by Julia Donaldson as they have a particular focus on clothes and Halloween respectively. We also enjoyed reading stories about ‘Winnie the Witch’ by Valerie Thomas as we found Winnie and Wilbur’s adventures very entertaining. We also began writing simple sentences in our copy books and accompanied them with a lovely picture.

In Gaeilge we explored the theme of Éadaí (clothes) and Oíche Shamhna (Halloween). We enjoyed learning songs, poems and simple phrases relating to these themes especially ones that involved ‘an Púca agus an Cailleach’ (the ghost and the witch). In Maths this month we continued to practise our counting games and writing our numerals. We have also been developing our understanding of one-to-one correspondence (the ability to match an object to its corresponding number) through playing maths games such as animal hunt and snail trail. We also learnt about 2D and 3D shapes through activities such as sorting, pattern boards, constructing shapes using peg boards, lollipop sticks and polydrons, feel the shape games, threading 3D shapes onto string, going on shape hunts and navigating BeeBot to different shapes. Finally we had a maths trail and ran a ‘Have you got Maths Eyes?’ competition in our class for Maths Week 2019 with some fabulous entries. It was very tricky to pick a winner!

 

In S.E.S.E, we learned about autumn and went on a nature walk to search for signs of autumn such as fallen leaves; colour changes; seeds, nuts and berries and animals. We collected some items for our nature table. We also learned about hedgehogs and squirrels and spoke about hibernation and migration. We learned about the life cycle of a pumpkin and about Halloween – its origins and traditions. We also did some colourful leaf printing.

  

In Art we made Betty and Harry from ‘The Scarecrows’ Wedding’ using paper, paper plates, fabric and straw. We decorated their wedding cake using patterns of shapes. We made autumn ‘handprint’ trees by drawing around our arms, filling the trunk with brown paper and printing the leaves using a peg and pom pom.  We used clay to make hedgehogs and we made witches, bats and silly pumpkins for Halloween! Take a look!

 

In Music we learned the song ‘The Farmer has an Orchard’ but we loved the spooky songs ‘The Witch Rides’, ‘There was an Old Witch’, ‘Witch Song’ and ‘One Two Three Four Five Little Witches’ that we learnt for Halloween. We continued with our gymnastics and had our last class with Steve for Ball Skills as we are moving to a new module of Dance with Ms Casey. Finally, in S.P.H.E (Social Personal Health Education) we continued to learn about ourselves – our identity and self-awareness; growing and caring for new life and the important people in our lives.

We hope you enjoyed our blog, tune in next time for our November news!

 

 

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, S.P.H.E | Comments Off on October News from Junior Infants – Better Late than Never!
June 28 2019

Farewell from Senior Infants!

Wow what a last month in Senior Infants! This year has flown by! We are so ready for First Class now.

In Aistear, we had lots of fun playing in the Travel Agents booking our holidays for the summer. We also enjoyed sand play and we did a little treasure hunt whereby we had to find magnetic letters in the sand which made words relating to summer. We played with small world, Lego, magnets and best of all we got to play with the BeeBots and the BeeBot maze!

In English, we read the story ‘Winnie and Wilbur at the Seaside’. We did some fun sequencing jigsaws and sentence reconstruction relating to the text. We also wrote a book review on the story. We learned about postcards this month. We looked at different postcards that some children had brought in and then we worked on writing our own. In Gaeilge we finished off ‘Siopadóireacht’ (Shopping) and did ‘An Trá’ (The Seaside). We also learned a well-known song ‘Can’t Stop the Feeling’ as Gaeilge and added dance moves. In Maths, we continued learning about subtraction and we learned about spatial awareness – left, right and all the prepositions. In the last week we got to work the BeeBots you can check out our twitter @MsOlsonsClass to see videos of how they work!

    

In S.E.S.E, we had a great month because we incubated hen eggs and hatched three chicks. They are called Michael D. Chickens, Charles Chickens and Chick Chock! It took 21 days for the chicks to hatch and we had to keep them under an infrared light to keep them warm afterwards. We also looked at different sea materials, we learned about floating and sinking, magnets, sound, the Titanic and different sea creatures. Did you know that an Octopus has three hearts and blue blood?

    

In Music we learned some songs including ‘Jackie the Sailor’, ‘Chuaigh mé go dtí an Trá’ and we listened to different pieces of music. We also learned some well-known songs including ‘A Million Dreams’ (which we performed at assembly) and ‘How Far We’ll Go’ from Moana. In Art we made some lovely multi-sensory crab pictures using sand and bun cases. We also copied Van Gogh’s Sunflowers! They turned out really well. In Drama we read the story ‘The Rainbow Fish’ and did some activities based on the story. We also went on our school tour to Greenane Maze we had so much fun exploring the mazes, playing games, looking at farm animals and going on a nature walk. On our last few days we had a pizza party and an ice-cream party! We are so lucky!

  

   

We have had a great year but we are ready for our Summer Holidays! We hope you have enjoyed reading our blogs this year. We will be back again in September!

 

Category: Senior Infants, Literacy, Maths, Gaeilge, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Music, Drama | Comments Off on Farewell from Senior Infants!
May 28 2019

The End of Year Show!

For the last few weeks we have been doing dance. We are doing it with Ms. Casey. We are practising for the End-of-Year Show. This year we are performing ‘Cinderella Rockerfella’. Sixth class are acting in the show. Here is the cast list for some of the main parts;

Cinderella – Jennifer

Rockerfella – Saibh

Buttons – Meghan

Dan – Ella

Ugly Sisters – Oisin and Charlie

Fairy Godmother – Lauren

I interviewed Ms.Aivalikli and she said her class have been working very hard on the play and have started practising it on stage. Every class from 2nd to 5th are doing the dances. I am doing a dance which includes a lot of different moves such as freeze frames and the box step. Part of our routine even includes cowboy hats.

Cool Fact – Ms.Casey used to teach me ballet!

Why not come and see the show for yourself, It’ll be a lot of fun!

By Pearl Fitzpatrick

Category: Media Team, Music, Drama | Comments Off on The End of Year Show!