Due to Covid 19, we are currently using a staggered arrival in the mornings. Each morning from 9:10 - 9:30 the children have fine motor skills activities and free play. The children have a different activity each morning while we wait for all the children to arrive (E.g. Jigsaws, Lego, Play dough, Pencil grip activities -such as tracing our names/ cutting/ colouring, water play, threading with laces and beads etc.). These activities help with handwriting skills, fine motor development and hand-eye coordination. Formal lessons begin at 9:30 when the school day officially starts.
At 9:30 we take the rolla to see who is in school that day. After we have a chat together as part of our circle time. We tell and listen to stories, jokes and news from one another. We sing songs and nursery rhymes together, practice mindfulness (eg. breathing exercises or meditation) and take part in a movement break (eg. Yoga, dancing, stretching or exercising). Next, we'll look at the visual timetable to see what is next on the schedule for the rest of the day.
Each morning we have literacy stations at our tables. Each group work together at a literacy based activity (2 teacher led and 3 independent). These activities change each day and are very interactive!
Next is the best part of the day.... Time for Aistear! This is where our themed learning takes place through games, play based activities and child led fun. The children learn about Science, History, Geography, Art, Drama, STEM, Maths and Languages during this time. Our themes change each month and include the home, the supermarket, the construction site and more. The play activities rotate every 2 days so that each child completes all activities within a fortnight. This is a time when important life skills including problem solving, communication, imagination, planning, reflection, critical thinking, sharing and turn taking are happening in the classroom. The children love this time of the day and so do the teachers!
After Aistear, the children work together to tidy up the classroom and discuss what they did during the play time. This is when ideas are shared and the children really learn from one another!
Ansin, tá sé am-Gaeilge! Oibrimid le chéile chun foghlam faoi téamaí difriúila gach coicis. Tá na ranganna Gaeilge á múineadh trí amhráin, dánnta, cluichí, cómhrá, aithris agus athrá i Naíonáin Bheaga. Tá Gaeilge neamhfhoirmiúl úsáidte againn i rith an lae chun frásaí agus grammadach úsáideach a cleachtadh chomh maith. Is aoibhinn linn an Ghaeilge sa rang seo!
Then, it's time for Irish! We work together to learn about different topics each fortnight. Irish lessons are taught through songs, poems, games, discussions, repetition and revision in Junior Infants. Informal Irish is practiced throughout the day to familiarise the children with useful phrases and grammar. We love Irish in this class!
After all that learning it's time for big break! The children play outside in their yard area and on days when it is too wet, they take part in indoor exercise breaks. The hot lunches from Carambola arrive at 12:30 and children eat together in class while chatting or listening to a story, nursery rhymes or music. Everyone helps to clean up by scraping their hot food into the correct bins afterwards (red for compostable items, green for the tinfoil trays).
In the afternoon the children complete numeracy and Maths activities at their tables.
Once Maths stations are finished, t's time to tidy up, relax and get ready for the weekly story. Reading is so important for children and we read the same story for 1 week to develop a love of reading in the classroom. The children love to recognise patterns, make predictions and notice new information or pictures each day. This is a time to calm down, relax and enjoy a book together. After the story the children line up and get ready to go home for the day. Although the day is short, we manage to squeeze in lots of learning and fun during the day!
Hi my name is Niamh and welcome to the Junior Red blog. See what we get up to in our first year of school.