Maths Games

One resource that I cannot do without in the infant classrooms for Maths are these double sided counters. I use them for lots of different games. You can buy these counters from lots of sites but I got mine from Amazon.

These are used daily in my classroom

Story of Number:

Each child gets a tub and depending on what number story you are doing in class. They get the required number of counters.

Ask the children to shake the counters and then tip them out onto the table. The children can record the number of red counters and the number of yellow counters. They can then add the numbers to find out how many counters altogether.

Tower Game:

For this game the children work in pairs and will each need cubes, a set of digit cards and counters.

The children mix up the digit cards and turn over the first one. They then build a tower with that number of cubes. Children then compare the towers with their partner. Whoever has the taller tour takes a counter. Children can decide to be red or yellow. The game continues until all the counters are gone. The child with the most counters wins.

Roll and Cover:

I spotted this idea on Miss Mernagh’s page. Miss Mernagh also has downloadable game boards for Roll and Cover.

Children work in pairs for this activity. Children roll the dice and cover that number on the game board with their colour counter. The other child then rolls the dice and covers the number. Play continues until all numbers are covered.

A little tip for this game is to keep the dice in the little tub while playing the game. This will avoid children crawling on the floor in search of missing dice.

There are endless opportunities for games with these counters. Feel free to share your games and I will add them to the post. As always if you have any questions please send me a PM.



End of Term 2!

Hi everyone,

Apologies for the lack of posts recently, between school events and projects I was overwhelmed so I took some time away from the blog, but as we approach the end of Term 2 I’m back.

Can you believe it’s nearly the end of Term 2. This week is probably an ideal week for some assessments before the end of Term 2.

For Junior Infants, it’s important to check their knowledge of their phonics, be it Jolly Phonics or whatever programme you use in your class. It is also important to check blends and digraphs at this stage of Junior Infants. You may not have covered them yet but it can be useful to pre-test the children on their blends. I like to use the Phonics skills checklist from NEPS for letter sounds and blends. You could also check their knowledge of sight words. There are examples of sight words assessments and records in the above link. I also liked to use the assessments within the Word Attack Pack. Finally one last suggested assessment at the end of Term 2 for literacy is the test within the Hands on Phonics Teachers manual. I particularly like this test and it can be repeated allowing for comparison across terms.

In Maths there is probably an assessment for Easter within your Maths Scheme, depending on the scheme you use. I also have my own checklists for maths available on my store which can be repeated and compared term on term also.

For Senior Infants, depending on your class I might revise sounds and blends/digraphs that have been covered to date. I would also use the First 100 sight words from the NEPS pack, you could also use the second 100 words checklist depending on the children in your class. I used one record sheet per pupil for the year, I highlighted the words they know and each time I did the test I used a different colour highlighter to measure progress. Similarly to Junior Infants I would also test the Senior Infants using the screening test in Hands on Phonics Teachers Manual.

For Maths in Senior Infants there is also a termly test in your Maths Scheme. Alternatively my checklists for Senior Infants Maths is in my store. These checklists were designed with the Ready Set Go Programme in mind.

I also have assessment packs for Junior & Senior Infants in my store. If you have any questions on the assessments mentioned above please send me a P.M.


Seachtain na Gaeilge

I can’t believe that it is this time of year already.
The school year is flying by which is quite scary sometimes.

For Seachtain na Gaeilge there are lots of ideas for all classes. Here are some ideas for the infants which could also be used across all classes.

I tried to integrate Gaeilge across different curricular areas during Seachtain na Gaeilge. Beginning with Aistear I focused on what topic we were covering and then taught the children lots of vocab in Irish for the topic. I encouraged the children to use these words in Aistear and if I heard a group using them they got extra points in Class Dojo. I tried to link an Irish song or poem to the topic also. if you are following my termly plan my topic is the builders. An ideal song to link to this topic is cúigear fear ag tógail tí. You could also link directly to the Sa Bhaile theme in Irish.

In PE I liked to teach the infants an Irish dance. I like the Damhsa Mór reel. These videos from PDST are great to show the children on the whiteboard before beginning your lessons. Another option is to link with the Senior Classes to play playground games as Gaeilge. Games such as Cén t-am é a mhac tíre are ideal for break times and can be led by a Senior pupil.

For Music, I am going to explore Irish music, helping the children to identify the traditional instruments. Again you could link with pupils from Senior classes if they play the instruments to come and show the instruments to the younger classes and perhaps play a tune for them. In older classes, you could look at the History of Irish Music either.

These are only some ideas for integrating Seachtain na Gaeilge into your classroom. If you have any questions please send me a PM.


Engineers Week

Next week is Engineers Week!!

If you are participating in Primary Science Awards this year Engineers Week is an important step in your application.

If you are using the Builders topic in Aistear this will directly link with engineers as children build houses and other buildings. In small world using k’nex and lego will also link well to Engineers Week.

Other simple activities that use resources that might be available in your classroom are:

Building a tower: Take a small teddy I used a teddy of piglet, the children were asked to build a tower for piglet so that he could see his friends over the wall. Lots of equipment could be used for this approach: construction straws, k’nex, lego and megablox. This would also link into 3D shapes in Maths.

Making a buggy: Children can use k’nex to build a buggy for another small teddy to travel in.

Making a car: This activity can be adapted to your class level by adding a specific objective such as a lever or door that opens and closes. This activity is probably more suited for 1st and 2nd classes upwards.

Further ideas from the K’Nex Challenge can be found here.

I am hoping to link the Senior Classes with the Infant Classes this week for a buddy building challenge. Infants will work with a Senior pupil to build something with a variety of materials.

In my store I will have a set of challenge cards that have pictorial instructions which will help for group work in the classroom.

If you have any questions, please send me a PM.