Our winter walk
In class we have been learning about winter. We have learned about the signs of winter, winter clothes and the holly tree. We learned that it is only the female holly tree that grows red berries and that the low leaves of the holly tree are prickly to prevent animals from eating them, but the high leaves of the holly tree are rounded because animals cannot reach them. We decided to go on a winter walk to look for signs of winter. We put on our hats, scarves, gloves and coats and off we went! We spotted bare trees (deciduous trees) and evergreen trees and we also spotted some holly trees and the robin (we learned about the life cycle of the robin before Christmas). We saw horses with blankets on to help keep them warm in the cold weather. We visited the Hugging Tree and discovered that the Hugging Tree is a deciduous tree. The last time we visited the Hugging Tree (in autumn) it had leaves but now its branches are bare. We each made a wish at the Hugging Tree before heading back to school. We had a great time on our winter walk!
We are special
This month we have been talking about what makes us special. Ms. Murphy told us that inside the special box there was a picture of a very special person. We each got a turn to look in the box to see the very special person and when we looked in the box we saw....ourselves! Each of us got to hear why we are special to our family, our friends and Ms. Murphy. All these lovely comments are recorded on our own personal sheets and they are proudly displayed in our classroom for everyone to see. Ms. Murphy is very lucky to have such special and wonderful Junior Infants in her class 😊
Ireland and the Polar Lands
In Geography we learned about how life in the Polar Lands is different to life in Ireland. We found many differences between life in Ireland and life in the Polar Lands: clothes, transport, homes and food. We also looked at some animals that live in the Polar Lands, e.g. the Arctic fox, polar bears, the Arctic wolf and the Arctic seal. We then saw on the news that a young Arctic seal had been found on a beach in Quilty in Clare just before Storm Brendan. It is extremely rare for an Arctic seal to be found in Ireland. Seal Rescue Ireland have named her Cloudberry (after an Arctic flower) and are taking very good care of her. You can see a picture of Cloudberry below. We think she is very cute!
This month we have continued to work on our numbers. We now know the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. We have been having lots of fun playing games to practice these numbers.
We went on a number hunt around the school. We counted doors, fire extinguishers and tables and we looked for numbers written around the school. We found lots of numbers!
Our theme in P.E. for this month is dance. We have been exploring how to move to music in the halla and we have been learning dances in the classroom. Here are a few of our favourites for you to try at home!
Our trip to the Post Office
In class we decorated special Christmas cards for our families and Ms. Murphy helped us to write messages for our families in them too. We then got ready to go the post office to post our cards.
In the post office we each bought our own stamp.
We then put our stamps on our envelopes and put the envelopes in the postbox so the postman can deliver our special cards.
In History we have been talking about toys babies would like to play with and toys children our age would like to play with. We discussed the differences between them and why toys for children our age might not be suitable for babies. We then had a Show and Tell day in class. We brought in our favourite toys and we all got to sit on teacher's chair at the top of the room and tell our friends about our toys. We also brought in some toys from when we were babies to show our friends. We really enjoyed seeing all the diifferent toys and we even got to play with them during play time!
Ella is the name of the character in our English programme and in our story this month we found out that Ella had broken her leg. We decided to decorate and write Get Well Soon cards for Ella. Ms. Murphy knows Ella's teacher and so we were able to find out where to post our cards to so that Ella would receive them! We put on our coats and headed to the post office to post our cards. We put all our cards into one big envelope, bought our stamp and posted our cards in the letterbox. We couldn't believe it when a few days later there was a special delivery to the school for Ms. Murphy's Junior Infants! We opened up the envelope and found a letter from Ella. She told us her leg is much better now and she's really looking forward to Christmas. There was also an envelope for everyone in the class. When we opened our envelopes we found a Thank You card for each of us from Ella. She really liked the cards we made for her and wanted to say thank you to each of us!
In Music we learned about the violin and we were very lucky that one of our classmates brought her violin into class for us to see. We got to see the violin and bow up close and we even got to hear it being played beautifully for us. We really enjoyed getting to see and hear the violin in our classroom.
We played pass the parcel sounds bingo with our buddies and it was lots of fun! Each group had a bingo card with 6 sounds on it and an envelope full of pictures. Each group passed their envelope around in a circle and whoever had the envelope when the music stopped took out a picture, decided which sound their picture started with and then covered that sound on the bingo board.The group that got all 6 sounds covered first were the bingo champions for that round!
In history we listened to the story of The Three Little Pigs and we sequenced the story using the words first, next and last. In Art we created the houses of the three pigs and our buddies helped us to decorate and add the wolf and the three pigs to our houses.
Our theme this month has been Bia. In the pictures below you can see us practicing 2 of our new phrases: 'Cuir _____ sa bhosca lóin' and 'Tóg amach _______'.
For Science Week we learned about the life cycle of the Horse Chestnut tree. We learned that the Horse Chestnut tree is one of the first trees to get its leaves in spring. The sticky brown buds open in March and by May the tree is covered in white flowers that look like candles. Bees love these flowers and make honey from the nectar. By the middle of summer it is easy to see the green prickly fruits which contain the seeds (conkers). By late September the green prickly fruits begin begin to fall and burst open and we can see the shiny chestnut inside. The Horse Chestnut tree is the first tree to lose its leaves in autumn and in winter the tree is bare. In the spring the cycle starts all over again.
We also carried out an experiment to find out how plants drink. Each group got two cups, poured some water into their cups and coloured the water red using food colouring. Each group put a white flower into one cup and celery into the other cup. We marked the water level on each cup with a marker also. We checked the flowers and celery each day and we saw the leaves of the flowers and celery begin to turn red and the water level in each cup begin to go down. We learned that water travels up the stem of the plant into the leaves and flowers. We recorded the steps involved in our experiment as well as the results of our experiment for display in the classroom.
In P.E. we have been working on our throwing and catching skills. We have been working on throwing up our beanbags and catching them again. We even tried to fit in a clap or an action after throwing up our beanbag before we caught it again! We have been working on throwing to a target as well as throwing and catching with a partner.
In Geography we have been learning about houses. We discussed the different rooms in houses and the items you could find in each room. We learned about different types of houses such as bungalows and two-storey houses. We worked together in small groups to design different rooms and then we put the rooms together to create a display for our classroom. One side of the room designed a bungalow and the other side of the room designed a two-storey house with an attic conversion! In Art we used our imaginations to create houses using different shapes of coloured paper. We worked on our cutting skills to cut out the different shapes we wanted. Ms. Murphy was really impressed with our ideas. We created houses with letterboxes, doorbells, cat flaps, attic conversions and many other great ideas! We then used paint to create the sky and grass.
Jolly Phonics Group 2
We have now started Group 2 of Jolly Phonics. You can find the song and action for each sound below.
We have been very excited in Junior Infants as we are now able to read words! We have been learning to blend our first group of sounds in class and we have been learning to read tricky words too. We are doing brilliantly and Ms. Murphy is so proud of us :-) You can find some blending videos below as well as a blending challenge to try at home!
How Full Is Your Bucket?
In class we have been talking about showing love and kindness to others. We read the story "How Full Is Your Bucket?". You can watch the story below. We will continue to be "Bucket Fillers" in Junior Infants and complete acts of kindness in school and at home.
Goldilocks and the Three Bears
One of the classic stories we have listened to in school is Goldilocks and the Three Bears. We made books about the story in Art and we also got a bag of characters to retell the story. In Drama we used different voices for each of the three bears and we visited the house of the three bears too! Using mime we helped them with their household chores and we were even there when Goldilocks went into their house! As part of our drama we also took a trip through the forest to visit Goldilocks' house to talk to her about what had happened! You can see a video of Goldilocks and the Three Bears below.
We have now finished our block of gymnastics. We have learned so much over the last 6 weeks including how to do a pencil roll, an egg roll and a tumble. It has been lots of fun!
As part of our Science work on the topic of light we looked at different shades of colour and we sorted colours from darkest to lightest. We then painted snakes and symmetry butterflies with our buddies. The focus in this activity was on painting with different shades of one colour. We used white paint to help us achieve lighter shades of our given colour. On our snakes we later created patterns with coloured paper to link in with our Maths work on patterns.
We used the leaves we collected on our nature walk to make leaf lanterns.
In Maths we have been learning about pattern. We have used concrete materials to make patterns and we have also created patterns in Art.
Autumn nature walk
We went on a nature walk to look for signs of autumn and we were thrilled our buddies could come with us. Before we left we talked about things we might see and we got our checklists ready on our clipboards. We also brought crayons with us to do some bark rubbings, magnifying glasses so we could look at things in more detail and we each had a bag to collect any signs of autumn we found. Our bags were full by the time we returned to school! On our walk we saw many signs of autumn. We saw dew on the grass, acorns, conkers, fallen leaves, blackberries, helicopter seeds and spider webs! On our nature walk we also visited the magical Hugging Tree. Legend has it that the Hugging Tree can grant wishes if you give it a hug so we all gave the Hugging Tree a hug and made a wish. We even gave it a big class hug too! We had a great time exploring autumn on our nature walk and when we came back to school we examined what we had brought back in our bags. We had pictures of different kinds of leaves on the board and we searched our collections to see if we had found any of these leaves. We discovered we had found horse chestnut, sycamore, beech and oak leaves as well as conkers and their husks, beech nuts and their cupules, sycamore seedlings (helicopters) and acorns. We could see some conkers that were almost ready to come out of their husks and we had some beech nuts almost ready to come out of their cupules too. We tried to make our sycamore seedlings (helicopters) spin and we enjoyed looking at our collections through our magnifying glasses because we could see them in better detail! When we had finished exploring our collections we used our leaves and paint in autumn colours to make leaf prints.
We love meeting our buddies from 5th Class. We meet them once a week and do lots of different activities together. It is lots of fun! We are very lucky to have such wonderful buddies.
Exploring our sense of taste
In SPHE we explored our sense of taste. We used our tongue to taste natural yoghurt (sour), crackers (salty), lemons (bitter) and Jelly Tots (sweet). One taste in particular was a clear winner in our class!!! There were great reactions to the different tastes as can be seen in the slideshow below.
For Space Week we learned about day and night and we watched some videos from astronaut Chris Hadfield showing us how people sleep, eat and brush their teeth in space. We had lots of fun making rockets and aliens with our buddies from 5th Class and our home school bear Rebel really enjoyed reading our books about space!
In Irish we have been learning to ask and answer questions. We have been working on: Cad é sin? Sin ____ (doras, cófra, mála scoile, fuinneog, cathaoir, bord).
Fun on the Farm
Our theme in oral language this month is Fun on the Farm.To tie in with this we have been learning Old McDonald and we even tried some "On the Farm" yoga from Cosmic Kids. You can find the video below if you'd like to try it at home.
As part of our work in Science we went on a colour hunt. We had to try find the colours red, green, blue, yellow, orange and purple. We checked in every corner of the school, upstairs and downstairs, and we managed to find all the colours!
We have started learning our sounds using Jolly Phonics.
- You can listen to the songs for our sounds here:
- You can find the actions for the sounds below:
- You can listen to the sounds here: https://www.jollylearning.co.uk/resource-bank/learn-the-letter-sounds/
We do gymnastics on Wednesdays with our gymnastics coaches. We have been learning lots of new skills.
To get ready for learning to write we have been doing lots of activities to strengthen our fingers. It has been lots of fun!
We have been learning the days of the week. We enjoy singing this song to help us to remember them in order.
As part of our work in History we created a time capsule. We each had an envelope and in it we put a photo of our first day at school, a piece of string measuring our height and a drawing of our favourite things. We then put our envelopes into a box, sealed the box and put it up high out of reach! We will open it again in June to see how we have grown and changed during our year in Junior Infants.
We became more familiar with our new school as part of our work in Geography. We visited our principal Mrs. Howard's office and we all even got a chance to sit on her chair! We also visited our secretary Anke's office to say hello. We went upstairs to see the St. Brigid's cross with our school's golden rules on it and we had fun playing games in our new yard!
In Science we have been learning about our bodies. We revised the names of the different parts of our bodies using the song Head Shoulders Knees and Toes. You can see the video we use below. See if you can keep up when they sing faster and faster each time! We also measured our hands using unifix cubes and recorded the results in our classroom.
We have been learning our colours and we are learning how to say them in Irish too!
We have lots of budding artists in Junior Infants! We have painted our names, we are creating books about Goldilocks, we have drawn our self portraits and we even created cave paintings after listening to the story Cave Baby by Julia Donaldson.
We exercise regularly throughout the day using Go Noodle. Here are two of our favourite songs to exercise to. Why not try them at home too!
We are all great friends in Junior Infants and we have lots of fun playing together.