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!
May 2 2022

March News from Ms. Olson’s Class!

We had lots of fun exploring our theme ‘Animals and the Farm’ in March.

In Aistear, we finished off learning about Homes and Houses before starting our new theme. We enjoyed playing in the kitchen home corner, sorting furniture into the rooms of the doll’s house, making our own house pictures and constructing our dream homes with Lego.

In week two, we started learning about ‘The Vet’. We had lots of fun playing in the veterinary surgery – we had to pretend to be receptionists, vets, veterinary nurses and we brought our pets to the vets. We used teddies as pets or sometimes we liked to pretend to be the animals ourselves! We also played ‘The Vet’ using small world toys and we sorted the animals by type e.g. farm animals, zoo animals, pets etc. We practised our cutting and sticking skills too as we learned about the life cycle of a frog. We watched a cool video about it first and then cut out pictures of the life cycle and stuck them in the right order. We also liked doing jigsaws! We had a short week of free play, followed by a week of the vet visiting the farm home corner where we enjoyed pretending to be farm animals on the farm! We also constructed fields for the farm animals and sorted the animals into the correct fields. We constructed farm vehicles such as tractors and combine harvesters as well. We also learned about the life cycle of a chicken in preparation for our own hatching chicks! Finally, in week five, we loved buying fresh produce from the Farm Shop! We also enjoyed doing small world with the farm set, did a cut and stick activity where we matched the animal to their home and finally we made farm animals out of playdough!

In English, we have really taken off with our reading and we have nearly finished our Jolly Phonics! We practise our tricky words and blending each day which is helping to improve our reading skills too. We love taking books now when we have finished our work and we read them to our friends as well as to our teacher. Our writing is coming along great too! We love Fridays as we do free-writing when we can write about whatever we like unaided. Monday to Thursday we do literacy stations – we do one station each day. Usually our stations are: two phonics games, 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).  At the end of the day we love story time – this month we read the stories ‘Farmer Duck’ and ‘The Pig in the Pond’ by Martin Waddell. World Book Day occurred in March as well and we brought in our favourite books to show our friends.

In Gaeilge, we were learning all about ‘Lá ‘le Pádraig’ (St. Patrick’s Day). It was Seachtain na Gaeilge (Irish Week) and we had such fun performing the ‘Haka as Gaeilge’ with the whole school! It was a lot of fun! We also learnt some other Gaeilge songs including  ‘An Leipreachán’ (The Leprechaun),‘Lámha Suas an Féidir Leat’ (Hands Up) and ‘Lá ‘le Pádraig’ (St. Patrick’s Day). In Maths, we continued on with our partitioning and combining within 3 and 2 and we really enjoyed playing games where we had to add on one and two. We also enjoyed sorting shapes by one, two and three properties using the Venn, Tree and Carroll diagrams.

In S.E.S.E we enjoyed learning about the signs of Spring and singing our four seasons song. We learned about farmers, animals and their young, animal homes, vets and identified what pets we had. We learned about the lifecycle of a frog and a hen in preparation for our own hatching chicks. We also enjoyed learning about the story of St. Patrick and sequencing his life.

In Art, we made mixed media spring daffodil pictures using egg boxes, card, tissue paper and bubble wrap for clouds. We also made lovely St. Patrick’s Day headbands. We used a cork to print shamrocks on to the band and we attached a rainbow with a pot of gold on to the top. We added shiny green shamrocks on to them too. We also made lovely Mother’s Day cards using cupcake liners to create a flower. We started our Easter art by finger painting a silhouette bunny picture too.

In Music we enjoyed learning the songs ‘Five Little Ducks’ and ‘See See See’. We also learnt how to identify high and low sounds through listening to different pieces of music. We were very lucky to have our external P.E. teachers back! We loved our dance sessions with Catherine Casey’s School of Dance and we enjoyed learning lots of fundamental skills with Coach Ed! Finally we had some lovely sunny weather and we got out for a picnic with Ms. Aivalikli’s class and a nice Spring walk!

We packed a lot in to Junior Infants in March, tune back in soon for our April news!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on March News from Ms. Olson’s 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!
March 6 2022

January News from 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 acting out winter sports 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 Antarctica and Arctic posters. We used twistables, pencils and cotton wool to create our posters and stuck pictures of different animals native to the polar regions on them. We also constructed snowmobiles with Lego and igloos and polar animals with playdough.

       

In English we continued to learn our Jolly Phonics, Tricky Words and we enjoyed playing phonics games. We enjoyed engaging with the books – ‘The Emperor’s Egg’ by Martin Jenkins, ‘Lost and Found’ by Oliver Jeffers and ‘The Polar Bear and the Snow Cloud’ by Jane Cabrera. We found ‘The Emperor’s Egg’ to be very informative and we learned many facts about penguins. We also enjoyed our letter writing stations – we wrote the letters in sand, with playdough, on whiteboards and as rainbow letters.

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 sorting and learning about weight. We sorted items according to weight and did some heavier / lighter hunts and challenges. We also enjoyed playing maths games on the iPads.

In S.E.S.E, 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 P.E. we focused on the Games strand of the curriculum. We love playing warm up games such as stuck in the mud, flush the toilet and duck duck goose. We practised lots of skills this month including rolling, stopping and trapping balls, kicking and shooting, dribbling, bouncing, catching, tossing and striking. We used footballs and  rackets and bean bags a to practise these skills. We loved doing little relay races too whilst we practised these skills.

In Art we made beautiful penguin and polar bear collage pictures. We also decorated a handprint poem for Grandparents’ Day.  In Music, we sang some lovely songs – our favourite being ‘Boa Constrictor’. The song is so funny as it is about being eaten by a boa constrictor!

  

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

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on January News from Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
February 13 2022

January News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!

We had a great start to the New Year in Room 17 – check out what we’ve been up to across the month of January…

In Literacy, we studied a Chapter of C.S Lewis’ ‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe’ as a focus for our narrative writing. We were inspired to write some ‘magical doorway’ themed stories ourselves in school and some wonderful short stories for the ‘Write a Book’ competition also – many budding authors showcasing their creativity. In addition, we have been studying persuasive writing this month. We really enjoyed brainstorming and debating a range of topics from gaming to homework and many more – excellent arguments on show with great rebuttal to see!

As Gaeilge, bhíomar ag díriú ar na téamaí ‘Siopadóireacht’ agus ‘Mé Féin’. Bhíomar ag cleachtadh foclóir bainteach le na cineálacha siopaí atá ar fáil, cad is féidir a cheannach iontu agus conas cur síos a thabhairt ar an gcostas atá ar rudaí. Bhíomar ag déanamh dul siar ar chomhráití bainteach le cur síos a thabhairt fút féin, faoi codanna an chorp agus na postanna a mbeidh againn nuair atáimid fásta aníos. Ó thaobh na gramadaí de, rinneamar obair ar na briathra neamhrialta san Aimsir Fháistineach chomh maith le obair ar an Aidiacht Shealbhach.

In maths, we have been focusing on percentages – a very useful real-life topic. We have been learning to calculate percentages of numbers, including percentage increases and decreases. We also focused on the measures strand with some weight and capacity work – revising how to change units, add, subtract, multiply and divide different weights/capacities.

In History, we studied ‘The American Revolution’ and ‘The French Revolution’. We used the iPads to research some of the key events and read some comprehensions to delve a little further into these revolutionary times.

In Science, we focused on the theme of ‘sound’. We learned about the structure of the ear and the different functions of these parts. We also completed some experiments to show how sound travels as vibrations. We even made our own straw flutes to illustrate our work on pitch.

In Geography, we studied the different climate zones of the world, using our atlases to help us locate what climate zones related to certain locations around the world. We also learned about the latitudinal and longitudinal lines around the globe that help us to identify locations around the world and how they are linked to the climate zones and the time zones.

In Art, we drew some lovely hot chocolate inspired mugs to heat us up on these cold January days. We also studied the artist James Rizzi and used his artwork as inspiration for our own cartoon inspired cityscapes.

In Music, we studied the history of ‘hip-hop’ and practiced some rapping. We also enjoyed some rhythm and performing work on DabbleDoo. We learned two new songs as Gaeilge as well – ‘Can’t Stop The Feeling’ by Justin Timberlake and ‘A Sky Full of Stars’ by Coldplay.

In PE, we concluded our cycling course which we really enjoyed and will hope to reap the practical benefits of over time. We also have been focusing on team games like football and Olympic handball to extend our ball skills and teamwork ability.

In SPHE, we have started the ‘Stay Safe’ programme and we focused on the topic of ‘Feeling Safe and Unsafe’. Lots of practical discussion and scenario work extending our decision making.

We also really enjoyed getting to grips with some more coding using Scratch with Ms. Aivaliki. She introduced us to some of the basics of the coding world using this great resource – a really enjoyable afternoon had by all!

We also celebrated ‘Grandparents Day’ as part of ‘Catholic Schools Week’ – although they couldn’t be present this year, we were reminded of the memories we share and the love they give us.

Thanks for reading!

Category: Fifth Class, Literacy, Numeracy, S.E.S.E, Art, S.P.H.E, Physical Education, Religion | Comments Off on January News from Ms. Treacy’s Fifth Class!
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!
December 2 2021

Food Glorious Food in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!

In November, we explored the theme of ‘Food’. We had a lovely mid term break but we were delighted to be back and engaging in Aistear again! We visited the Pizzeria, the Bakery and the Supermarket in our home corner this month. We enjoyed playing the roles of the chefs, bakers, customers, waiting staff and shop assistants. In the pizzeria, we were greeted by the waiting staff, who showed us to our table and gave us our menu. When we had ordered our food the chef made us delicious pizzas. Afterwards, we had to pay our bill and if the service was good, we gave them a tip! Some people decided to order their pizza over the phone for delivery so the waiting staff had to answer the phones too. In the bakery, we enjoyed eating delicious treats baked by the baker – there was the option to sit in as well or you could browse the selection and get the cakes for take away. In the supermarket, we enjoyed using the shopping baskets to carry our food that we had selected from the shelves. We then put it all on the conveyor belt and the shop assistant scanned it for us and put it in to our shopping bags. We had to make sure that we got our receipts too!

   

We also enjoyed constructing the pizzeria using Lego, Duplo and Sticklebricks. We used the small world people to play with our constructions afterwards. In Small World, we set up a town and acted out our journey to the supermarket. We did some great cut and stick activities  as well this month including ‘How to Make Pizza’, sequencing the story of ‘The Little Red Hen’ and ‘How to Make a Jam Sandwich’. We also enjoyed making playdough cookies and cakes for the bakery.

  

In English, we continued on with our Jolly Phonics. We are getting very good at blending short words now and we  are learning our Tricky Words! Soon we will be ready to start reading little books of our very own! Our writing is steadily improving and we are enjoying playing our phonics games and doing our fine motor stations each day. We read some great stories this month including ‘Pizza at Sally’s’; ‘The Tiger Who Came to Tea’ and ‘The Little Red Hen’. We have also started writing little sentences in our copies.

In Gaeilge, we have been enjoying exploring the theme ‘Bia’ (Food) using our Bua na Cainte interactive programme. Our listening skills as Gaeilge are greatly improving and we are finding the games much easier to play now! We enjoyed singing along to the food themed songs and learning simple phrases such as ‘Is maith liom ___’ (I like ___). We love when our puppet ‘Rolaí Polaí’ comes to visit us and we have conversations with him as Gaeilge, we count with him and we learn our colours too.

In Maths, we continued to focus on number work, engaging in activities such as counting games, number formation, making sets of numbers, learning about ordinal number (first, second, third etc.) and playing maths board games to develop one-to-one correspondence. We also explored different patterns such as ABAB and ABC patterns. We made these patterns according to colour, shape, size and random objects.  We learnt about length too! We did lots of timed exercises to see who could make the longest object with the materials provided within the time. We made objects of varied lengths using playdough, beads and thread and interlocking cubes. We’ve been enjoying having the iPads on Fridays, we play fun maths games from Topmarks.co.uk.

In S.E.S.E our focus was on food and people at work! We looked at how pizza is made, who makes it and where it originates from – Italy. We then tried our hand at making our own pizza! We learnt how the yeast makes the pizza dough rise. We left our dough to prove by the radiator and were amazed at how much it grew! We added our toppings and our margherita and pepperoni pizzas were delicious!

      

In Art, we made paper plate pizzas. We also make some clay hedgehogs and autumn trees. In Music, we loved learning little songs including ‘The Farmer has an Orchard’ and ‘Down by the Station’. We also started learning the songs for our Christmas play!

     

In P.E., we had great fun with Coach Gráinne learning lots of different skills including running, jogging, rolling, throwing, catching, kicking and bouncing. We love doing warm up games, relays and pair work during P.E.

   

Finally, in S.P.H.E, we have been learning all about our five senses. We did a taste test to identify our four different tastes – sour, bitter, sweet and salty. We tasted the foods – natural yogurt, lemon, a jelly sweet and crisps to identify the different flavours. Some we weren’t so keen on!

   

Thank you so much for reading our blog, tune in next month to read about all things Christmas! It’s sure to be a cracker!! 🙂

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, S.P.H.E, Physical Education | Comments Off on Food Glorious Food in Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants!
November 4 2021

3, 2, 1 BLAST OFF! 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, sequenced our nursery rhymes and created a space scene on a big piece of paper and used the small world people to explore it! We were very creative when it came to the art station as we made alien spaceships and decorated them with stars and gems! Finally in construction we made rockets out of polydrons. 

 

During the last week 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’ 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, whiteboard, counters 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, ‘Aliens Love Underpants’ by Claire Freedman, ‘Winnie the Witch’ by Valerie Thomas and ‘Room on the Broom’ by Julia Donaldson.

In Gaeilge, we explored the theme ‘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 compare 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 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 were very lucky to be invited to Ms. Lennon’s 6th Class Rocket Launches too which was lots of fun! In the second part of the month, we learnt about the story of Halloween and its traditions. We enjoyed learning about the signs of Autumn and we went on a nature walk in search of these signs. We also learnt about pumpkins and the life cycle of a pumpkin. We even had a pumpkin in our class!

     

We did lots of Art this month. We made alien spaceships, rocket ships, leave prints, silly pumpkins, wicked witches and hanging bats! 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 and you can see the videos on our Twitter page. In P.E., we’ve had lots of fun with Coach Gráinne learning lots of skills including skipping, hopping, running, bouncing, rolling and throwing. We enjoyed playing bowling during one P.E. lesson and we had an absolute ball on the last day with the parachute!

On our last day before the midterm break, we had a brilliant day! We started our day with a little Halloween sing-a-long. After playtime and P.E., we had a ‘Room on the Broom’ themed treasure hunt and we located the treasure chest full of treats in Mr. Fingleton’s office! We got to taste some Barm Brack and one lucky person found the ring and got to make a wish! Finally we watched the film, ‘Room on the Broom’ and ate some of our treats. What a month in Junior Infants, we hope you enjoyed reading our blog!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Maths, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Physical Education | Comments Off on 3, 2, 1 BLAST OFF! October News from Ms. Olson’s Class!
October 8 2021

Our First Month of Big School in Ms. Olson’s Class!

Wow! What a month in big school for Ms. Olson’s Junior Infants! We are loving being in school, have settled in so well and made lots of friends. On our first day, we walked into school all by ourselves and had lots of fun playing with the toys with our new classmates. Here are some pictures from our first day 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 Lego and Duplo this month. 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, straws, chopsticks, popping bubble wrap, 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’, ‘Froggy goes to the Doctor’ and ‘The President’s Glasses’.

   

We love our interactive Gaeilge programme, Bua na Cainte. We explored the theme ‘Mé Féin’ (Myself) 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. Sometimes we play with little picture cards and ask our partners some questions as Gaeilge. We also 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!

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 (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 and three 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 then we worked together to build an aerial view map of it! The green pages represent the yards with trees, the yellow hexagons are the classrooms, jenga blocks are the corridors and the red shapes represent other classrooms and the stage in the hall. We also learnt about the work of a doctor and an optician and we learnt the names of all of our body parts. We made a skeleton as well in groups. We cut out all the bones and stuck them together. They are also coming in handy as our Halloween decorations!

 

 In Music, we were learning lots of lovely nursery rhymes. We particularly like ‘Miss Polly had a Dolly’ and we love doing actions to all of our songs! In Art, we made lots of lovely things including, self portraits, X-ray hands and Owl Babies pictures. We used a print technique with pom poms to create our Owl Babies. In P.E., we have been playing lots of playground games, doing relays, developing our hopping and skipping skills and working on our throwing and catching skills with beanbags. We are very lucky to have Coach Gráinne coming in to us each Wednesday! 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, we know it was quite long but we did so much in September and we wanted to tell you all about it! Tune in next month to hear about what we got up to in October!

Category: Junior Infants, Literacy, Numeracy, Aistear, S.E.S.E, Art, Drama, S.P.H.E, Physical Education | Comments Off on Our First Month of Big School in Ms. Olson’s 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!