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Junior Infants

Junior Infants School Tour 2016

Junior Infants had a fantastic day out on their school tour to Glenilen Farm and Skibbereen Sports Centre.

We had a fun singsong on the bus journey to Glenilen Farm in Drimoleague, which was our first port of call.  There Valerie explained how the milk from their cows is used to produce the most delicious butter, yogurts and desserts!  Would you believe Glenilen uses 1 million litres of milk a year!  Their own herd of 55 cows produces a lot of milk but they also  have to get milk from neighbouring farms so that they will have enough for all those products.

We observed the Glenilen workers making cheesecake and little pots of fruit yogurts.  Then we got to make our own.  We poured stewed fruit into the bottom of little jars and topped it up with creamy yogurt,  To add the final touches, we stuck on a barcode on the base and the Glenilen label!  After viewing the milking parlour and the rest of the farm, we enjoyed our little yoghrts with our picnic!

Before we left, we got to try out the fun milking machine in the picnic area!  Many thanks to Valerie of Glenilen for being such a fantastic guide on the day!

Then it was on to Skibbereen Sports Centre, where we tried out the gymnastics air track and played parachute games.  Before we left we helped to push the air out of the air track by rolling from one end to the other!

A great day was had by all!IMG_4972 IMG_4973 IMG_4974 IMG_4975 IMG_4976 IMG_4977 IMG_4978 IMG_4980 IMG_4981 IMG_4983 IMG_4986 IMG_4987 IMG_4988 IMG_4990 IMG_4991 IMG_4992 IMG_4993 IMG_4994 IMG_4995 IMG_4996 IMG_4997 IMG_4999 IMG_5001 IMG_5002 IMG_5003 IMG_5005 IMG_5006 IMG_5007 IMG_5008 IMG_5009 IMG_5010 IMG_5011 IMG_5012 IMG_5013 IMG_5014 IMG_5015 IMG_5016 IMG_5017 IMG_5018 IMG_5019 IMG_5020 IMG_5021 IMG_5022 IMG_5023 IMG_5024 IMG_5025 IMG_5026 IMG_5027 IMG_5028 IMG_5029 IMG_5030 IMG_5031 IMG_5032


Junior Infants learn about Fire Safety

Fire Safety

Members of Schull Fire Brigade paid a visit to junior infants in April to discuss fire safety and explain the work that they do.  Here are some of the fire safety tips they gave us:

  • Every home should have a working smoke alarm.
  • Never leave a phone to charge on an upholstered surface i.e. bed or cushion as it gets quite hot over time and may start a fire.
  • Always use a spark guard in front of a fire.
  • Plan an escape route from the home in the event of a fire.
  • Agree on a safe place to assemble outside the home in the event of a fire.

The fire brigade also demonstrated some of the equipment they use when on duty, including hoses, an elephant’s foot for sucking up water and the jaws of life for cutting people out of cars when necessary.  Finally, they told us how to recognize a fire hydrant on the street.  It has a metal cover with the letters FH on it and is supposed to be painted yellow!  They showed us where the fire hydrant is located in the school yard and after connecting a hose to it, they allowed us to spray the water!  This was very enjoyable. We were very grateful to the members of Schull Fire Brigade for giving up their valuable time to talk to us about their work.   Míle Buíochas!

Helmets are worn to protect the head from falling objects.

Helmets are worn to protect the head from falling objects.


This balaclava is worn inside the helmet.


We tried out the helmets for size.


This is just one of the many hoses on the fire engine.


This is the jaws of life, which is used to free people trapped in cars.


The oxygen tank and mask helps the firemen to breathe in a smoke-filled building.


We enjoyed watching the firemen demonstrate their equipment.


The fireman connected a hose to the fire hydrant for us.


The hose was very powerful!


They allowed us to spray the water!

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In the classroom, we explored the work of the fire brigade by setting up our own fire station for role play and also making fire engines at the creative table.  Have a look at us in action…..

Our own fire crew put out fires too!

Our own fire crew put out fires too!

We used a hose for this job!

We used a hose for this job!

The creative table at work!

The creative table at work!


We used egg boxes, matchsticks, lollipop sticks and masking tape to assemble our own fire engines.


Milk carton lids were used as wheels, lights and sirens.



Toilet roll inserts also made good hoses!

Busy at work.

Busy at work.


Adding the paint.


The masking tape is great for sticking and can be painted over at the end.


The ladders were tricky to assemble but turned out well.

A completed engine!

A completed engine!


Another finished piece.


Our fire engines looked just as good as the real thing!





Farm Visit

Over the last two weeks, Junior Infants have been learning a lot about the farm.  We have learned about the animals found on the farm and the importance of farm safety.  We also made fantastic farm animals at our creative table and played with the farm set.  To supplement what we learned in class, the Bowen family kindly invited Junior Infants to visit their farm.  We were delighted to take them up on the offer and had a fantastic tour and a very memorable day out.

These sheepdogs work very hard herding the sheep and cattle on the farm.

These sheepdogs work very hard herding the sheep and cattle on the farm.


These amazing flowers were made at the farm’s very own metalworks.


Aren’t they beautiful?

Mr Bowen showed us a nice lamb!

Mr Bowen showed us a nice lamb!


He allowed us to pet the lamb too!


It was lovely and soft!


Next we saw two fat pigs!


They love to eat fruit and vegetable scraps.


We called this one Black!


We thought Spotty was a good name for this one.

The pigs snorted a lot and sniffed around us.

The pigs snorted a lot and sniffed around us.


These are mountain sheep and their horns help them to protect their young from the fox.


We scattered nuts for them.


They ate them all up!


This is the duck house where the ducks spend the night and lay their eggs.


They were outside in the sun.


After a little encouragement, they entered the duck pond for a swim!


We had a great view of them!


This is the interior of the hen house. The hens sleep here and lay their eggs here too!


We were lucky enough to see this hen lay an egg right in front of us!


These are two blonde cows. We watched them eating nuts.


These are their baby calves!

The last stop on our tour was the cow shed.  Here we saw the cattle being fed.

The last stop on our tour was the cow shed. Here we saw the cattle being fed with hay from a round bale.


The cattle put out their heads and eat the hay from the ground.


This little calf is only one day old!


We were allowed to pet it.


Finally, we had a lovely picnic with lots of goodies, including buns baked with eggs from the hens we saw earlier!


What a lovely end to a grand day out!

Many thanks to the Bowen Family and also to all parents who helped out on the day to make it such a fantastic experience.  Míle Buíochas daoibh go léir!

Easter News from Junior Infants

Junior Infants are looking forward to the Easter break after a very busy second term in school.  Here are just some of the things we have been up to……

In late January, we had a visit from Garda Jonathan O’ Donovan of Schull Garda Station who told us lots of interesting information about his work in the community.  He showed us some of the equipment on his utility belt, including his walkie talkie, handcuffs, a retractable baton and pepper spray.  He demonstrated how to make a call on his walkie talkie, as he called Bantry Garda Station from the classroom.  Garda O’Donovan explained that the letters CW on his lapel are short for Cork West and then the number that follows is his personal Garda number.

He spoke to us about road safety and stressed how important it is for children our age to sit in a car seat in the back of the car.  Garda O’Donovan also showed us the squad car and turned on the siren for us!  We were very grateful to him for taking the time to visit our classroom and speak to us.  Míle Buíochas Garda O’Donovan!

The CW on the lapel stood for Cork West.

The CW on the lapel stood for Cork West.


Garda O’Donovan’s stab vest.


A young recruit!


Garda O’Donovan advised us on how to stay safe in a car.


The pepper spray.


Handcuffs from the Garda’s utility belt.


A retractable baton


The inside of the squad car.


Now we know what the Gardaí keep in the boot!


Míle Buíochas Garda O’Donovan!

In recent weeks, we discussed the important service provided by the hospital and set up our own hospital in the classroom.  We even created our own x-ray machine for the x-ray department.  Finally we made beds for sick dolls and teddies to use in a dolls’ hospital.

The stetescope is used to listen to a patient's chest.

The stetescope is used to listen to a patient’s chest.


The first touches to our xray machine


Radiologists at work


Our xray department


Tending to a patient


We had to examine the xrays carefully!


We used a lot of black paint!


Then we added bones!


Painting a rib cage!


Sick in bed!


Preparing food for the patients.


Dolls’ hospital.


The xray machine turned out great!


Making beds for the dolls’ hospital!


In the lead up to Easter, we have been exceptionally busy making Easter eggs and mobiles!   We made Easter decorations for the classroom by decorating card Easter eggs with fabric and fibre and glitter.  They looked great.  We also put a lot of work into making Easter mobiles.  First we had to put an undercoat on the eggs and then return to them later to add patterns to them.  We also painted hens and bunnies and decorated coat hangers.  Finally we used glue and ribbons to assemble our mobiles.  They turned out fantastic and we are very proud of them.

Preparing the eggs.

Preparing the eggs.

Lovely work!

Lovely work!

Assembling the mobiles.

Assembling the mobiles.

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We are now looking forward to the Easter holidays and a well-deserved rest……

Cáisc Shona Daoibh go léir.

Games of the Past

As we approach the centenary of the 1916 rising, Junior Infants have been trying out some of the games that children of their age would have played back then.  Children did not have a lot of toys in those days and often had to improvise by using found objects and their imaginations!  Three games which were popular among children in the 20th century were hopscotch, jacks and hoop trundling.  We gave each of them a try!

Hopscotch is still played by children today, so we were somewhat familiar with how to play it.  Draw out the grid with numbers 1-10, take a stone each, and off you go! Throw the stone to one number at a time, hopping up to 10 and collecting the stone on the way back.  No bother to us!

We loved hopscotch!

We loved hopscotch!

We threw beanbags instead of stones!

We threw beanbags instead of stones!

We also tried Jacks, which is a game children used to play with stones.  There are many variations of this game.  We threw up a stone and picked up another stone off the ground while it was in the air.  Then we threw up the stone and tried to pick up two other stones while it was aloft and so on.  This was very difficult.

We then tried another version of Jacks, where you had to throw up a stone and try to catch it on the back of your hand.  If successful, the next time, you throw up two stones and try to catch them on the back of the hand……..very difficult, but some of us did manage to get the hang of this.

Trying our hand at Jacks!

Trying our hand at Jacks!

Setting up the game of Jacks with little stones.

Setting up the game of Jacks with little stones.



Playing Jacks

Playing Jacks

Finally, we tried out hoop trundling.  The Hoola Hoop is still a familiar toy nowadays.  In the early 20th century, children under 12 could often be seen with similar hoops although they used them somewhat differently.  Children would roll the hoop along, tapping it with a stick to send it in the direction they wanted it to go.  Usually boys would use iron hoops and girls wooden ones.  They also used to have hoop races!

We had fantastic fun hoop trundling and got better and better with practice.  We discovered the secret is to give the hoop a good send off and then once it has picked up speed it is easier to control with the stick.

Isn’t it incredible that games of long ago can be just as much fun today as they were all those years ago!

It was so much fun running along after the hoop!

It was so much fun running along after the hoop!

Practice makes perfect!

Practice makes perfect!

On the move!

On the move!