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Junior Infants – Aistear

Aistear 2018

Our theme in Aistear for the month of October is ‘The Playdate’.  During Aistear the children are given the opportunity to explore this theme by learning through play.

In preparation for this, we have learned lots of language that has helped us engage with the theme. Some of the language includes: playdate, playing, communicating, friendship, kindness, tea party, food, cups, plates, knives, forks, spoons, sharing, respect, friends, fun, laughing, joking, games, sports.

One of our stations is the role play area where the children pretend to have their friends over for a playdate. This theme also incorporates the home element and gives the children the opportunity to interact with each other using the language associated with the playdate and home life.

Other stations include construction and building, a creative station and a small world station where the children use their imagination to create imaginary worlds.

How to support your child’s Aistear learning at home:

  • Be mindful of the new vocabulary your child is learning (see above) and try to use it at home.
  • Talk to your child about Aistear and ask them what they liked about it.
  • Please come back and check our Aistear blog regularly as we’ll be adding photos of the boys having fun during Aistear time.






June update

Our Aistear theme for June is Games. We will be focussing on the beach and seaside also.

The vocabulary your child will be learning will include:

rock pool, shells, crab, starfish, fish, lighthouse, pebbles, seagull, beach, kite, windbreak, bat and ball, kite, yacht, boat, ship, life belt, ice cream, toy boat, shorts, beach ball, frisbee, ice cream van, umbrella, shorts, ice lollies, t shirt, sunglasses, pier, sea, sun.

 We are so lucky to live near beaches in Portrane and Donabate so if you can squeeze in a couple of trips over the next few weeks and get your child to point out all of the things he can name. Our pretend area will be the beach…we’ll provide the “sand” and “sea” if you can send in sunglasses, sun hats and some beach props for your son to use!

If you have any story books at home based on beach or seaside themes, please send them in and we promise we’ll send them home before the month is over.

Our Aistear activities will also include lots of writing opportunities (writing holiday postcards, writing passport info, picnic shopping lists, reading and matching games, Small Worlds (shoe boxes with mini- beaches inside!), lego, play doh and of course, water and sand play.

Please keep your eyes peeled on our website as we’ll be uploading photos of the boys having fun “in the sun” (our role play corner!) over the coming weeks.

We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank you for reading our blog and getting involved at home with our Aistear theme. We’ve really enjoyed implementing the programme this year.


Ms Corr and Ms Taaffe


May Update


Our May theme for Aistear is Houses and Homes. Our Junior Infants are beginning to explore our new pretend area, which this month, is the Estate Agent’s.

In the pretend area, the children will have a chance to act as estate agents, interviewing clients, taking down their property requirements and personal details etc. They will also act as clients who will pretend to be seeking properties to buy. They will be choosing what type of property they are looking for and where they want it to be.

Our other Aistear stations will include Writing Stations where the children will trace and copy property advertisements, Creative Area, where they will depict houses using different media and Construction where they will build houses out of various materials.

The vocabulary we are learning includes: flats, houses, apartment, bungalow, detached, semi-detached, terraced, cottage, farm house, garden, for sale, for let, sold, garage, kitchen, bedroom, living room, estate agent, property etc.

If you and your family get a chance, a trip to the estate agent’s (or maybe a chat over the property section of the newspaper!) would consolidate your son’s learning. If you have any story books at home pertaining to this theme, please send them in so the boys can have a look. We’ll send them back home when we’re finished.

We had a special visitor, see our pictures below:-

Our April theme is Size


Both classes have set up their role play areas – The Post Office! Here the customers can buy lots of stamps, post their letters in the post box (made in class using recycled materials) and send parcels of many sizes. The staff in the Post Office will have a busy time this month, ensuring everybody can fill out and send their Passport Applications, TV Licence and Dog Licence forms.

Other Aistear stations include sorting activities (by size), designing our own stamps, cutting, colouring and supplying the Post Office with stamps, writing and sending postcards and letters, addressing envelopes and small world.

The vocabulary we are concentrating on includes: post office, sticky tape / sellotape, string, parcel, post van, rubber stamper, letters, postcards, stamps, envelopes, paper clips, scales, parcel worker, letter sack.

We would be most grateful if parents could send in the following: used/ unused envelopes of many different sizes, old stamps.

In our writing station, the boys will be encouraged to write their own address. We would be grateful if this could be pre-taught orally at home so that the boys know their house number, street name.

If you and your family get a chance, a trip to the local post office would be helpful in consolidating our theme. We will have our April visitor soon – Watch this space!

It the New Year…  our theme for January is Shopping.


John Hagan from Country Crest Farm Shop at Jones’ Garden Centre visited the Junior Infants today. He very kindly brought lots of vegetables to show the boys. He answered lots of interesting questions like “How do potatoes grow?” “Who makes the food for the farm shop?” and “How many customers do you get a week?”



















Our role play area is a farm shop and the boys are pretending to work in the farm shop; sorting foods into groups, helping customers, using the cash register and restocking shelves. Other learning activities in Aistear this month include: writing shopping lists (we’re encouraging the boys to ‘have a go’ at writing using whiteboards, markers and a variety of writing implements), sorting and matching different foods, creating shops with lego and using our small figurines to play with the theme. The boys are also exploring the farm through small world activities.

Some of the vocabulary your child will be learning includes:

Fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, meat, dairy produce, open, closed, fruit, oranges, apples, bananas, berries, potatoes, broccoli, vegetables, carrots, condiments, jam, chicken, cheese, milk, bread, eggs, money, thank you, you’re welcome, total, animal names, cash register, manager, customer etc.


How you can help your child at home:

  • Make a shopping list with your child, ask him what the first sound is in each word. Ask which letter makes the sound and write it. Allow your child to add some words to the end of the lists. Make different lists for different shops e.g. food list for Supervalu, toy list for Smyths.
  • Visit a farm shop with your child. Point out the different produce in the shop. Speak to someone who works in the shop about where their food comes from.
  • If you know anyone who works in/owns a farm shop, please let us know! We always try to get interesting, local speakers in to talk to our infants.

As usual, keep checking in for photos of your children learning through play.


Gemma Corr and Michelle Taaffe

December Aistear News

December’s Aistear theme is Toys. Our role play area this month will be Santa’s Workshop so make sure to ask your son all about the fun activities he’ll be taking part in every day. Our different Aistear stations are designing, making, assembling, wrapping and writing…all the skills needed to be a true North Pole elf!

The vocabulary your child will be learning will include:

Workshop, Santa, wrapping paper, paint, paint brushes, gift tag, gifts, sack, screwdriver, saw, presents,hammer,

 ribbon, spanner, glue, toys, reindeer, Christmas tree, elf, Rudolph, elves, sleigh, Father Christmas, tools, scooter, skateboard, doll, yoyo, robot, lego, games console, games, soldiers, books, building blocks etc.

Ways to help at home:

  • Look at toy catalogues with your child and ask him to talk about his favourite toys.

Choose a sound e.g. ‘d’, and see how many toys your child can find in the catalogue beginning with that sound e.g.
dinosaur, drum etc.


  • Word tennis game: You and your child take it in turns to name toys until someone can’t think of any more toys.
  • “What’s in the sock?” game: put a small toy into a woolly sock, the child feels the sock and tries to guess the name of the toy hidden inside.


If you have any unwanted Christmas decorations, we will gladly take them off your hands!

Thank you for your continued support at home with your son’s learning.


Looking forward to seeing you at the Nativity play on the 20th December!

We had a special visitor

to our class – a true North Pole elf!















November Aistear Update

Annette from White’s Laundry, Donabate visited the boys today to tell them all about the Launderette, what services they provide and what it’s like to work there. The Junior Infants asked lots of interesting questions including “How many people work in the launderette?” and “How long does it take to wash the clothes?”

Our Junior Infant boys will be learning all about Clothes in Aistear this month.

Here is some of the new vocabulary your child will learn: suit, shirt, jumper, tie, trousers, jeans, skirt, t-shirt, cardigan, shorts, dress, shoes, socks, high heels, vest, pyjamas, tights, underwear, blouse, football shirt, raincoat, sun hat, woolly hat, scarf, jacket, cap.

Our pretend area is The Launderette and we’ll be hoping to have a speaker in to talk to the boys.  Watch this space! The boys are pretending to wash, dry and fold clothes as well as use the till and issue receipts.  If you get a chance, bringing your son on a visit to the launderette in the village would be great consolidation of what he is learning in school. Failing that, getting him to help with laundry at home would also be helpful! (You can thank us later!!)

Other stations in Aistear will include designing t-shirts, sorting clothes according to weather, sorting clothes into groups according to other attributes (e.g. all the red clothes), cutting and pasting clothes and matching clothes. We’re also integrating other subjects with our Aistear theme such as Gaeilge lessons in Eadai and SESE topics like Materials and Change.

Keep checking in on our blog as we’ll be posting photos of the boys playing as soon as we can.


October Aistear Update


During Aistear time in September, our Junior Infants learned all about our different Aistear stations which we’ll be playing in from October on. Some of the stations you might like to ask your child about are: Role Play, Small World, Construction, Play Doh and Sand. In each station, we talked about the best ways to play and Teacher modelled this with some volunteers from the class. We also learned the best ways to connect each station to our theme of the month.

October’s theme is Friends and Hobbies.

Our pretend area will be “The Playdate”. The boys have already learned lots of language that will help them play using this theme. Some of it includes: friend, sharing, days of the week, what time?, lunch, dinner, snack, toys, playroom, armchair, cushions, chair, sofa, television, games, jigsaw, doll, bike, iPad, teddy, tidy-up, mum, dad, family.


How to support your child’s Aistear learning at home:

  • Be mindful of the new vocabulary your child is learning (see above) and try to use it at home.
  • Invite one of your son’s friends over for a play date, making sure to include your son in the organising stage of this (i.e. practice making phone calls to organise the playdate)
  • Ask your son how Aistear went each day.


Please come back and check our Aistear blog regularly as we’ll be adding photos of the boys having fun during Aistear time.









































March Update

This month, the Junior Infants’ Aistear theme is Food!

The pretend area will be a restaurant and a kitchen with a dish-washing area. The boys will be in role as restaurant staff and customers. If you and your family happen to be eating out during the month, make sure to point out all the things we associate with restaurants to your child e.g. till, table, buffet, kitchen, waiting area, table number, condiments, waiter, waitress etc.

Other Aistear stations will include a writing table, making play doh meals, Small World restaurant/ kitchen, colouring and drawing favourite meals, constructing/ designing restaurants using blocks/duplo and lego.

There will be lots and lots of activities to engage your son’s learning this month.

The following are only some examples:

  • Reading menus
  • Taking orders
  • Reading orders
  • Recognising table numbers
  • Writing menus
  • Writing orders
Our Menu

             Can I take your order?


                 What’s on the menu today?


It’s Snack Time!










Keep up the great work at home!

March Visitor

We were extremely lucky this month to have a real life chef come to speak to our Junior Infants. Murat, who some of you may know, runs Pasta Costello’s answered lots of interesting questions about working in an Italian restaurant. He compared our Italian restaurant menus to Pasta Costello’s and said they are quite similar! J

Some of the questions the boys asked included:

  • How do you make pizza dough?
  • How do you know how much food to make each evening?
  • What’s your job in the restaurant?
  • How do you get people to come to your restaurant?





Building the restaurant

Making a tasty meal!

Taking the food orders to the chef.


























February Update



This month, the Junior Infants’ Aistear theme is Transport.


Our role play area is a train station where the boys are pretending to sell and check tickets as well as being passengers and mechanics. Other Aistear stations include cutting and pasting pictures of different modes of transport, constructing trains and aeroplanes from Mobilo, Duplo, blocks and playdoh and playing Small World using the train sets.

The vocabulary we are concentrating on includes:

Platform, steam engine, carriage, luggage, train, track, escalators, signal box, clock, guard, tickets, signal.

If you and your family get a chance, a trip to a train station would be great to consolidate what the boys arelearning in school. If you can take photos and email them to us, we can get the boys to report on their trip to the class.

Ms Corr’s email address is and Ms Donohoe’s is

We were very lucky to have a special visitor to speak to the boys on Monday 6th February.  One of our Junior Infant’s dad is a pilot who works with City Jet and he answered lots of the boys’ questions about air travel and aeroplanes. Even the staff learned lots!