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19 Apr

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In 4th class, we are currently learning about Australia. We learned all about the Great Barrier Reef and the amazing plants and animals that live there. This led to a discussion on water pollution and environmental awareness. We discussed oil spillages in the sea and how this damages marine and bird life. With this in mind, we decided to create lava lamps to investigate and observe how oil and water react when put together.

The Great Barrier Reef

First we brainstormed our previous knowledge on water pollution and oil spillages. We discussed this as a class. We then predicted what we thought would happen when we mixed oil and water together. Using their previous knowledge, the children worked together and decided that the oil would float on top of the water because they had seen oil floating in puddles on the side of the road before. However, they did not know why this happened. 

After our discussion, the children were divided into groups of three. Each group was given an empty bottle, some oil and some water. They were given instructions to fill one quarter of the bottle with water and to add an additional two quarters of oil to the bottle. These measurement instructions allowed for the integration of maths through fractions and capacity.

 As soon as the groups added in the oil, they instantly realised that their prediction was correct. The oil floated on the water. With further discussion the children came to the correct conclusion that oil is lighter than water and that is why it floats on top. This knowledge led to a further discussion on water pollution and how the birds and fish are damaged and injured when oil is leaked into the water but just sits on top as a thick layer.

Now it was time to make our lava lamps! Each group was given a bottle of food colouring. Before adding the colouring, we predicted what we thought would happen when it was added. Some children thought it would just mix with the oil and some thought it would sink to the bottom and mix with the water. It was time to find out! They added 8/10 drops of the food colouring into the bottle. It did not take long for the children to realise that the food colouring sank straight through the oil and only reacted with the water at the bottom. The children instantly came to the conclusion that the food colouring was also heavier than the oil and this was why it sank straight to the water.

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We examined the bottle as the food colouring sank through the oil and mixed with the water.

 Each group was then given half an Alka-Seltzer tablet. We discussed what this was and the children compared it to Disprin tablets which they have seen dissolving and bubbling in water before. Each group dropped their tablets into the bottle. The tablet sank straight to the bottom of the bottle and started to dissolve. The children observed in anticipation as coloured bubbles formed and floated up and down in the oil from the Alka-Seltzer tablet as they tried to reach the surface.

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Our lava lamps were so mesmerising.

 

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The children observed the lava lamps from different angles.

After two minutes of observation we discussed what we witnessed as a class. The children discussed that the thickness of the oil could have slowed down the speed of the Alka-Seltzer bubbles and created the look of a lava lamp.

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We examined them very closely.

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To conclude, we recapped on what we did today and highlighted the importance of environmental awareness and care. We reviewed the danger of oil spillages and how they can endanger and destroy bird and marine life. The children finally discussed ways on how we could tackle the problem of water pollution and protect our environment.

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18 Apr

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Having learned about the Titanic last week, the children in first class decided to undertake the challenge of designing their own boats.  First we brainstormed the properties of boats and we decided that they need to float, carry people and have some way of moving.  Then we discussed what types of materials would be good to use when building boats.  We concluded that materials such as paper and cardboard would be no good as they would get soggy.  Instead we would need to use waterproof materials such as plastic and strong materials such as metal.

The first step we took was to see what objects and materials would float in the water.  We had a quick scavenge around our classroom before predicting and testing the items we found.

Floating and sinking

Floating and sinking

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We found that the items which were heavy and had holes did not float.  Materials like wood and plastic floated.  Our favourite thing to test was the orange.  It floated when it had its skin but when we took the skin off it sank.  We came up with the idea that the orange peel was like a life jacket with tiny holes which was helping the orange to float.

Next, we took up the challenge of trying to make our boats using only blu tack.  This proved quite difficult as the blu tack sank to the bottom when we tested it in the water.

Kyra made sure it was a fair test. She measured the blu tack using a ruler to make sure everyone had an equal amount.

Kyra made sure it was a fair test. She measured the blu tack using a ruler to make sure everyone had an equal amount.

At the beginning of the design process, we found that we were concentrating more on making our boats look like boats instead of making sure they could float.

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After a while we saw some improvement when we experimented using different shapes.

Liam found some orange peel left on his desk and had a really super idea of how to make his boat float.  He was going to give it a life jacket.

Then we observed how long our shapes took to sink all the way to the bottom.  Flatter pieces took longer to sink.

After some time we finally got a boat floating for each group.  We made some alterations to enable them to carry some passengers.  We then tested them to see how many passengers (pieces of sweetcorn) they could hold before sinking.

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Take a look at our winning team!!!

We took a tally of our five boats showing how many passengers they carried.  We drew a graph to show our results.

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We really enjoyed making our boats.

17 Apr

14 Apr

juniors 13

The green table tied with the red table for table of the week! They kept their table clean and tidy and were kind to others. They are a great team!

juniors 12juniors 11Great work!

 

juniors 10Excellent word work!

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The red table tied with the green table for table of the week!

juniors 9This boy has been doing great work on his words.juniors 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These boys and girls got a prize and certificates for their lovely  handwriting.

13 Apr

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Bhí Tráth na gCeist ag Rang a Trí, Rang a Ceathair, Rang a Cúig agus Rang a Sé, le déanaí. Bhí go leor ceisteanna bunaithe ar scannáin, cláir teilifíse agus ceol. Bhuaigh Abbie, Maddy, Alana M agus Ryan agus fuair siad uibheacha Cásca. Bhuaigh Leanne, Calvin, Brooke agus Brigid duais mar bhí a lán spiorad foirne acu. D’eagraigh Ms Farren an Tráth na gCeist agus bhaineamar an-taitneamh as. Go raibh maith agat, Ms Farren!

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6 Apr

census-logoDid you know that Census Night is coming up later this month?

Every household in Ireland will be asked to fill out the form on Sunday 24 April, giving details about the people who are there at the time.

The Census is used by people all over the country – including the government, local authorities, businesses, local communities and students who use it for a whole range of purposes.

Some more detail about the Census – and how the information is important for schools and children – can be found on the CSO’s website.

5 Apr

Well, here it is! The latest from Tommy Lang’s stop motion production company. He has put his Simpsons lego to good use! You’ll find more of Tommy’s videos on the blog by clicking here, here, here and here.

This was all produced by Tommy at home over the Easter holidays. We love it! Well done Tommy!

‘A Day With The Simpsons’ from St Peter’s, Bray on Vimeo.

26 Mar

We have had a very busy term in Senior Infants and hope everyone is enjoying their well deserved break!

Here is a little update on what’s been happening in our classroom!

Investigating and experimenting is something we like to try whenever we get the opportunity. After reading ‘The Gruffalo’s Child’ by Julia Donaldson we decided it might be a good idea to try to design and make a coat for the Gruffalo’s Child to wear. We knew that the Gruffalo’s Child liked to explore the woods near his home but it seemed silly that he wasn’t wearing a coat out in the snow!

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The Gruffalo’s Child looks cold without a coat!

Since we are really improving at working together in groups we decided to complete this task in our Aistear groups but before we started it was important to discuss why exactly we were choosing to design and make a coat and what type of coat would be best for the Gruffalo Child. There were lots of excellent suggestions from the class. Michael said that the coat should be ‘warm’ and Elif suggested that it should be ‘waterproof’ because the Gruffalo’s Child might be playing in the snow. The Orange group said that the coat should look nice.

After talking about what criteria we thought was most important we looked at some examples of coats. We talked about different materials, colours, shapes and details such as buttons and zips. Cian McD made an excellent point when he said that ‘some zips get stuck easily’ so maybe we could make our coats using buttons instead.

We then decided to design our coats using pencils and crayons. Each person in the group designed an individual coat and then presented their ideas to the rest of the group. The group then decided on one aspect of each design that should be used in the making of the group’s coat. For example the Yellow Group thought that Chloe’s pattern was really nice and the Red Group liked the way Lauren had designed a coat with different coloured buttons and decided to use this design for the project.

Presenting design

Presenting our designs!

Each group then chose a variety of materials to work with to make their coat. A big thanks to Ms. Keating and Ms. Fry for lending us lots of different types of materials! Some boys and girls made hoods, others made sleeves and some were in charge of decorating the coat. Team work and cooperation was really important to make sure that the coat was completed properly and all teams did really well. We also practised our cutting and sticking skills which are very important.

Chloe designing

The boys and girls then presented their designs to the rest of the class and talked about how they felt working as a team and how they decided on their designs.

Check out the finished products below!

Yellow Table Design

The Yellow Group present their design

Orange Table Design

Well done to the Orange Group

Red Table Design

The Red Group and their design

Blue Table Design

The Blue Group explain their design to the class

As well as designing and making we have been working on our sequencing skills and are trying our best to use words such as ‘next’, ‘then’ and ‘finally’. We find it is best to practise sequencing some of the stories we have been reading in class, such as ‘The Toymaker’ by Martin Waddell and ‘The Gruffalo’s Child’ by Julia Donaldson. It also gives us another chance to practise our group work.

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Sequencing

During our Geography lessons we were learning about weather and were also discussing the climates of different countries such as Australia, Colombia, Norway and South Africa. We learned that ‘weather’ is the word we use to describe what it is like outside on any given day and that the ‘climate’ of a country is what the weather is usually like in that place. We learned about ‘north’, ‘south’, ‘east’ and ‘west’ and where is the ‘equator’ lies. We looked at a video on the Trocaire website http://www.trocaire.org/getinvolved/education and discussed how important it is to be aware of climate change and the impact that our actions can have on the rest of the world. Kristina kindly brought in a children’s Atlas for us to look at.

Atlas

One of the most exciting things to happen in our classroom all year was the arrival of 3 little visitors, thanks to Mr. McAdam! We were all so delighted when he told us that he needed our help to look after some chicks that were still in their eggs. We promised to be so good and to use our indoor voices so we didn’t frighten them! The eggs stayed in an ‘incubator’ at the back of the classroom and we can’t wait to see if they’ve hatched when we return after our Easter holidays!

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The incubator kept the eggs safe and warm

Incubator and signs

Mr. McAdam taught us so much and his lessons were always interesting and exciting! We learned a lot about farming during Aistear, we read the story of ‘The Children of Lir’, we learned about the story of number ‘9’ during Maths and had the chance to play lots of different musical instruments during Music lessons! Lauren said that she loved learning Gaeilge, Toby enjoyed Aistear and Lee said he loved everything he learned with Mr. McAdam.  We hope Mr. McAdam comes back to visit us soon and thank him for all his hard work!

23 Mar

Last Tuesday, March 15th, in every school across the country, students are celebrating Proclamation Day as part of the celebrations of the centenary of 1916. In St Peter’s, we had a very special ceremony, where every class was involved, finishing with the raising of the Irish flag that was presented late last year by the members of the Defence Forces. We also displayed artwork in the hall related to our projects on the Easter Rising.

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Our ceremony started with an introduction from our principal, Ms. Whyte. Next, Amber from 4th class, Finn and Chris from 5th class and Alex, Alana and Ryan gave us an overview of the Rising.

As part of Proclamation Day, schools were encouraged to create their own proclamations to represent their visions of the future. Kyra and Tiana spoke on behalf of 1st class, Ryan, Dylan M, Brooke, Casey, Codie and Brigid spoke on behalf of 4th class and Amy from 6th class read out her version. The Proclamations focused on the importance of education, of helping to end homelessness, the value of the Irish language and the care that we should give to the environment.

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As part of our 1916 celebrations, we read ‘The Young Rebels’ by Morgan Llewelyn. Jamie from 5th and Dylan M from 6th shared information about the book and about the activities we took part in.

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Toby from Senior Infants, Maddy from 3rd class and Lex from 5th are the great-grandchildren of Martin Ryan, who was a teacher in Scoil Éanna and a good friend of Padraig Pearse. He was also involved in the gun-running before the Rising. Toby, Maddy and Lex really impressed DSCF4326

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Women played an important part in the Rising. Caoilynn from 4th spoke about Nurse Elizabeth O’Farrell and Lauren from 5th told us about Countess Markievicz. 3rd class told the story of Grace Gifford, who married Joseph Mary Plunkett the night before his execution. 3rd, 4th and 5th then sang the chorus of song ‘Grace’.

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Before raising the flag, five of second class, Amalia, Adem, Tadhg, Ava and Liam, read out facts about the Irish flag.

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Then, Ms Whyte presented the flag to Brooke and Taylor from Junior Infants who carried it to Patrick and Leanne from 5th class, who raised it as the rest of the school sang ‘Amhrán na bhFiann’.

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Well done to all the readers and the artists who took part in today’s ceremony. We are all very proud of you!

We made a special recording of the Farrells’ research on their great-grandfather as a record for our students in the future. Well done to Lex, who put a lot of effort into researching his family history and wrote the piece with Ms Sugrue, and to Maddy and Toby for their excellent reading!

 

Martin Ryan, by the Farrell siblings from St Peter's, Bray on Vimeo.

23 Mar

Hi everyone! We hope you are enjoying the holidays! Here is what 6th Class have been up to in the run up to the holidays. As always, school has been very busy!

Along with every school in the country we celebrated Proclamation Day 2016.

6th Class students made speeches and did themselves proud.

We were honoured to welcome Create School and Wicklow County Council representatives to our classroom to help to launch an amazing mini-film recalling the events 1916.

We finished our 1916 projects too. We put so much work into them! When we shared them on Twitter we got lots of cool retweets.

Including from the official 1916 Commemoration account.

We got crafty for St. Patrick’s Day!

We also visited the Ballywaltrim Community Centre with students from all over Bray to take part in a quiz, the final activity in our local ‘One Book, One Community’ project.

We completed the Bray Drugs Awareness course too! This was a six week course, and everyone worked so hard on it.

We embraced ‘Girl Power’ and celebrated IWD!

We were also true to our Active School flag too, many of us competed in a 3k in Avondale!

We’ve been training hard with Tommy too…

We were so sad when we finished our book, ‘The Young Rebels’. It was a great choice for One Book, One Community.

We were lucky enough to meet the author of the book.

Speaking of which, we got beautiful cards from the author!

We had a brilliant class trip to St. Enda’s, the school in Rathfarnham where Padraig Pearse was principal. It is where our book is set, an it was instrumental in the 1916 Rising story.

For the rest of the year, 6th Class will be helping the Junior Infants out with their reading too!

Stephen came in to remind us about staying safe online.

We’ve been thinking of others too.

A&H helped to run the school book fair.

And we heard from a local community support group who do incredible work in our area.

We’ve also been preparing for Confirmation and attending mass a lot during Lent.

I think that proves we all deserve this Easter break! We can’t wait to catch up from April 4th, when we are back to school. Until then, stay bloggy!

6th Class.