Module 1 – The Curious Minds/ESERO Framework

Home Forums Teaching Space in Junior Classes with Curious Minds and ESERO Module 1 – The Curious Minds/ESERO Framework

Viewing 134 reply threads
  • Author
    Posts
    • #208967
      Profile photo ofpbrennan_jy7f6fe0Pat Brennan
      Course Facilitator

        *Please Note:  Participants who use Word (Or equivalent) to write their assignments and then copy and paste these into the forum may find that additional extraneous formatting is brought across. To avoid this, either right click in the post window and choose ‘Paste as Plain Text’ or use the keyboard shortcut cmd+shift+v. Alternatively, you can first paste the content into Notepad (Or similar text editor) and then copy it from here to the topic window.

        ASSIGNMENT

        Create a mind map in relation to your ideas about space. Please add to your mind map after each module as part of the reflective learning process.

        As a reply to this post, introduce yourself on the forum and share your favourite space fact. Then add a reflection (150 words min) on how you would use one inquiry-based activity in your classroom

        Also, please respond to at least one other participant’s post in this forum.

      • #209572
        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
        Participant

          Hi everyone!

          I’m Frances, space enthusiast and moderator with my colleagues from Blackrock Castle for this course.

          I have loved space since I was tiny – I remember the Mars missions in the 1970s and was fascinated by the idea that we could send missions to the planets.

          I was alive when the Apollo missions happened, but don’t remember them at all (I was only 3! in summer 1969).

          I just “snopes-ed” my new favourite space fact – and it turns out to be not true at all. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/michael-collins-scream-cut-mic/

          • #210049
            susan molloy
            Participant

              As a reply to this post, introduce yourself on the forum and share your favourite space fact. Then add a reflection (150 words min) on how you would use one inquiry-based activity in your classroom

               

              A lesson that I did before in school was asking the children to find a new home for an alien in space. We talked about what time of home he was looking for, his family members that were also coming with him and the type of environment he would like to live in. This naturally led to research about the different planets. I find it a great lesson to open up conversations about the different planets also there is a huge amount of cross curricular scope. geography for different types of homes, art- designing and creating a home, creating planets etc. There is also scope for this lesson to lead to group work research. Assign a planet to each group and they research which planet would be best for the alien to live on, each group present their ideas and research to the class. I have always found this lesson particularly enjoyable and the kids love it!

               

            • #210167
              Michelle McGee
              Participant

                Hello, my name is Michelle. I am currently working in Junior Infants with 4/5 year olds. My favourite space fact, its not really a fact but an idea put forward by Brian Cox in a recent lecture of his that I attended, is that we, as human beings, might be the only beings able to ‘think’ about space and therefore give it meaning.

              • #210997
                CLAIRE DEMPSEY
                Participant

                  Hi Michelle, I’ve never thought about this before but It makes complete sense! Thanks for Sharing

                • #213530
                  Eleanor Mccaffrey
                  Participant

                    Brian Cox has hit the nail on the head Michelle – great way of thinking about it

                  • #213852
                    Aisling Mathews
                    Participant

                      This sounds like such a great learning activity. The scope for inquiry based learning and quality discussion is amazing here. As a teacher in a junior school I think this is just the kind of topic that I would like to introduce with my class to discover their existing knowledge of space and their ability to think creatively.

                    • #210516
                      Rebecca Behan
                      Participant

                        My name is Rebecca. I will be teaching 1st class this coming September. My favourite space fact is that depending on the elements shooting stars are made from they can shine different colours.

                         

                        An inquiry-based lesson that I have done is making a volcanic eruption in a jar. The children really enjoyed this and it is such a fun way to show chemical reactions in the junior classes.

                        Method:
                        Half-fill a jar with water.
                        Add a few drops of food colouring.
                        Fill the rest of the jar with oil.
                        Allow a few minutes for the oil and water to separate.
                        Drop the fizzy tablet and watch the magic happen.

                      • #210744
                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                        Participant

                          Hi Rebecca,

                          this demonstration can make a great prompt when looking at Inquiry based learning.

                          Children could then consolidate their science understanding by posing simple testable questions that they can then verify with an investigation.

                          A child might suggest: “I think that if there is more oil then it won’t work… because…” and then check out if the more oil scenario does or doesn’t work.

                          Another child might think – there needs to be lots of water or the tablet won’t fizz- can I try it with only water?

                          In this way children act as scientists and confirm or refute their own understanding.

                        • #212469
                          Sinead Devlin
                          Participant

                            Hi Rebecca,

                            I love this lesson. I actually completed it for my diploma when I was being inspected about 15 years ago. Although we made volcanoes out a clay first and did not have the reaction in the jar. I love the idea of the jar.

                            A nice way to introduce the lesson could be a KWL chart and this will maybe keep the children focused and on task.

                             

                            As a parent myself now, I can see the effect that these inquiry based lessons have on children . My child loves to come home and reenact this type of learning at home.  Shame he isn’t as enthusiastic in other areas of the curriculum but it does just prove how important hands on inquiry learning is.

                          • #212705
                            Dolores Mc Monagle
                            Participant

                              Hi Rebecca

                              I’m also very interested in Science-based learning and I love how my own children are curious about the world around us and the solar system!

                              I can also see how enquiry-based learning can benefit children when investigating science matters. It also helps us as teachers to reflect on the learning at the end of a lesson for progression.

                            • #213531
                              Eleanor Mccaffrey
                              Participant

                                Rebecca

                                i had senior infants do this during science week -the screams of delight are a joy to listen too – children can surprise you with their imagination and thoughts – great fun experiment

                              • #212740
                                Mairead O Sullivan
                                Participant

                                  I like your space fact! So interesting! I think 1st class would love this inquiry based lesson! It would be so fun!

                                • #213454
                                  Helen O Sullivan
                                  Participant

                                    Hi

                                    I love doing this with the children ,Its certainly the one that gives them the most joy and the most fun .It is also the one the parents say that  they love to talk about and do at home !

                                  • #210645
                                    Louise O Grady
                                    Participant

                                      I love this lesson idea Susan because there’s so much scope for what you can do. It start with geography but the children could role-play life on the planet, design a the planet including his flag in Art, compose the planet’s anthem in music, etc. It’s very cross curricular and can be fun and child led.

                                    • #210667
                                      Louise O Grady
                                      Participant

                                        Inquiry based activity:

                                        ”Exploring the moon”

                                        I would start with a prompt like a short story of video of the moon. I would elicit prior knowledge and ask questions about the moon, e.g. What does the surface of the moon look like?

                                        Using a flashlight and a ball we would explore the moon’s phases, how the light changes on the ball (moon) and as it moves around the flashlight (sun). We would discuss the vocab around the different phases. We would then draw the different phases using black paper and chalk. We could also make the surface of the moon using playdoh, focusing on craters.

                                        We would investigate using pictures of the moon, astronauts, etc. The children can reflect in small groups on what they’ve learned. They can share their favourite fact like we did in this forum.

                                        Teacher assessment would be through observation and questioning. Self assessment and peer assessment through their drawings and playdoh models.

                                      • #210768
                                        Naomi Marica
                                        Participant

                                          Hi Louise this seems like a fun activity and potential for so many more lessons. With the ball and flashlight you can go and teach about shadows and activities can include making shadows with their hands, tracing their shadows in pairs outside with the Sun, etc.

                                          Pictures and vocab is very important especially as most children are visual learners. And I for one am always amazed doing a KWL chart at the amount of information children know about a topic beforehand and how much info they gather in such a short time. There will always be a space lover in the group of children you’re teaching, or at least one will be born after the topics are taught.

                                        • #210933
                                          Louise Gleeson
                                          Participant

                                            Yes the KWL is such a solid platform to work from.

                                            We did a space project (first class) during the first term and each table had to split a page in what fact and fiction knowledge they think they have?

                                            We had read a few fiction and non fiction books, and watched a few videos about space (Chris Hadfield). Do aliens really like underpants was a very popular question! What does gravity mean? This introduction / approach encouraged some great positive conversation about space and a good starting point for building on going forward.

                                          • #210939
                                            Louise Gleeson
                                            Participant

                                              Yes the KWL is such a solid platform to work from.

                                              We had read a few fiction and non fiction books, and watched a few videos about space (Chris Hadfield). Do aliens really like underpants was a very popular question! What does gravity mean? This introduction / approach encouraged some great positive conversation about space and a good starting point for building on going forward.

                                            • #213636
                                              Ciara Evans
                                              Participant

                                                Hi Louise,

                                                 

                                                I think your lesson is simple yet fun and there is a clear learning objective. There is alos a great channel on YouTube that could be used to introduce the lesson and gather excitement and momentum to the lesson.

                                              • #211246
                                                Anne Breen
                                                Participant

                                                  That’s a great idea Susan and a great wayto get the children’s attention. It’s so exciting for them to be finding a home for an alien. But yes it is essential to know some facts about where the alien is coming from so researching the various planets is crucial. I love how all aspects of the curriculum are used from oral language to art, geography and SPHE too. I will definitely try this out in the future.

                                                • #214261
                                                  Eleanor Mccaffrey
                                                  Participant

                                                    Hi Frances

                                                    really enjoying the course on this Sunday after noon

                                                    sorry bothering you

                                                    I’ve uploaded my reflective log

                                                    I have handwritten my mind map but where do I post it to please

                                                    many thanks

                                                    Eleanor x

                                                  • #214320
                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                    Participant

                                                      Eleanor,

                                                      if you can take a picture of it and save that picture on your computer, you can upload the picture from your drive to this forum.

                                                      See this screen shot that tries to show where you can upload. ^^^^

                                                    • #210191
                                                      Michelle McGee
                                                      Participant

                                                        I love working with materials with the younger classes as it is so hands on and relative to their life. One inquiry lesson I would like to do after reading this module is waterproof clothing. Eg Class teddy needs to prepare himself for the wet Irish winter, what material would be the best. We would test how waterproof different materials are. But it would also open up discussions about flexible materials, cost effective materials for those students who would need to be challenged.

                                                      • #210426
                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                        Participant

                                                          Michelle – that is the beauty of the inquiry approach – it differentiates activities naturally as children pose different questions that they would like to explore.

                                                        • #211732
                                                          Valerie Ryan
                                                          Participant

                                                            Hi Michelle,

                                                            I love that idea with the class teddy. Junior classes would be engaged straight away and the possibilities for integration are endless. Thanks!

                                                          • #210343
                                                            Michelle O Mahony
                                                            Participant

                                                              Hi . my name is Michelle and I am a Junior Infants teacher, heading into my 3rd year teaching this class. I have found that the children have  real interest in all things space and planets related in the last few years. My favourite fact is that the sun is a star!

                                                               

                                                              After reading and listening to this module, I would like to try the water proof material lessons, using an enquiry based lesson. I really liked the idea of posing a problem for the children to try and solve, like making a mess or a spill as an introduction and stimulus to the learning. I do think that the children are coming into Junior Infants now with some prior knowledge of science, either from pre school , or possibly watching videos on youtube etc, so making it a real life experience would elevate it for them. The exploration and investigation stage can be very easily managed in a lesson like this, with small amounts of water and materials being used. I think they would really enjoy helping teacher with her problem!

                                                            • #210428
                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                              Participant

                                                                Hi Michelle,

                                                                I agree with you on children coming in with more science background – and even if they don’t, tidying up a mess is a frequent, familiar context for them to use for their science.

                                                              • #213813
                                                                Sarah Byrne
                                                                Participant

                                                                  Hi Michelle,

                                                                  I agree, children love a good problem to solve. This will really engage them. I love that the new Maths curriculum seems to be taking a similar approach to learning. Problem solving and discussing different ways to solve problems instead of just always trying to find the ‘right’ answer at the end. It’s more about the process and sharing ideas. Teaching problem solving skills like the inquiry based activities here in this lesson.

                                                                • #213881
                                                                  Alexandra McMahon
                                                                  Participant

                                                                    Hi Michelle,

                                                                    I love this idea for infants too. The waterproof lesson is a great way for children to problem-solve and bring science to life. It would be such an effective lesson and I will definitely try it in September.

                                                                  • #210353
                                                                    Sinéad Heffernan
                                                                    Participant

                                                                      My name is Sinéad and I will be teaching Junior Infants in September.

                                                                      An interesting fact about space…..Mars has dust storms. Often called the red planet, huge dust storms can last for months and make it hard to see the surface.

                                                                      An inquiry-based activity……. I’ve tried this experiment a couple of times and its very effective ……How to grow a rainbow – science experiment.

                                                                      Needed: Kitchen roll/paper towel • Markers • Two small bowls of water • Paperclip • Thread

                                                                      Cut the kitchen roll into the shape of a rainbow. At each end, use markers to colour a rainbow about 2cm up from the bottom…..red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet. Attach the paperclip to the top of the rainbow and tie a piece of thread to it. This will allow you to hold your rainbow. Add water to the two bowls. Hold the rainbow with both ends slightly submerged into each bowl of water and watch your rainbow grow.

                                                                      Explanation: The fibres in kitchen roll have lots of little holes. Water is absorbed through the kitchen roll because when the first water molecule adheres to it and begins to move upward, it pulls the next water molecule up with it, like a chain. This same action is how water moves up into plants from the roots.

                                                                       

                                                                    • #210434
                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                      Participant

                                                                        Hi Sinéad,

                                                                        You could adapt that demonstration to become more inquiry focused by showing the rainbow happening, then asking the children what they wonder or would like to try differently (and why they think it would make a difference).

                                                                        for example: ” I wonder if we could make the rainbow faster… what would happen if we used different paper (like greaseproof paper)? or put the colours in a different order or ….”

                                                                        These set demonstrations can serve as a wonderful prompt, but the science learning by inquiry is based on the children using their own understanding to develop their ideas further. For that they need to have familiarity and some working mental model of the scenario and be challenged to explain it further and to use it to predict what will happen.

                                                                         

                                                                      • #210471
                                                                        kevin kennedy
                                                                        Participant

                                                                          Hi Sinéad,

                                                                          Thank you for sharing your introduction and the fascinating fact about Mars. Junior Infants are lucky to have such an engaging teacher!

                                                                          I love the inquiry-based activity you’ve suggested. “How to grow a rainbow” sounds like a wonderful way to combine art and science, and it’s perfect for capturing the curiosity of young learners. The explanation about capillary action in the kitchen roll is clear and easy to understand, making it a great educational moment.

                                                                          I would say the kids will have a great reaction  to these exciting activities!

                                                                           

                                                                        • #210654
                                                                          Elaine Breen
                                                                          Participant

                                                                            Thanks for this Sinead, this is something I’d love to try out with my class.

                                                                          • #214045
                                                                            Ciara FaganBarrett
                                                                            Participant

                                                                              I really like this lesson Sinéad and was immediately drawn in by the inquiry question, ‘How to grow a rainbow’ which I think will be intriguing for children, thank you!

                                                                            • #210492
                                                                              Orla Byrne
                                                                              Participant

                                                                                Hi , my name is Orla and an interesting space fact which is so simple is that the sun is a star! It’s my4th year teaching a multi grade JI and SI class and they still find this fact fascinating !

                                                                                 

                                                                                enquiry based activity about space :
                                                                                All stars are not white ? True or false

                                                                                first we need discover what a star is ? We could extend this by finding out the size of the largest, smallest star , any names of stars that are familiar eg the sun!
                                                                                next we can discover what colours stars can be. Red, yes slow, whit

                                                                                e and blue and what these colours represent, red is hot, yellow is hotter , white is even hotter and blue is the hottest ! The children can first predict which colour is the hottest.  Using clay and play dough  we can then make different coloured stars to represent our new knowledge

                                                                              • #212839
                                                                                Padraig McGrath
                                                                                Participant

                                                                                  Hi Orla,

                                                                                  That sounds like a great enquiry based activity to do with a class. The children would be really interested in that activity. I like the way prediction is part of the lesson too!

                                                                                • #212921
                                                                                  Laura O Neill
                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                    Hi Orla, that sounds like a lovely inquiry-based activity. I didn’t know what the different colours of stars meant, so that’s really good to know too.

                                                                                  • #213068
                                                                                    Olivia Smith
                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                      Hi Orla,

                                                                                      I love the sound of this lesson and is definitely something I would like to try with my class.

                                                                                    • #213070
                                                                                      Olivia Smith
                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                        Hi my name is Olivia, I just had second class and will have them again this upcoming year. My favourite space fact is that the moon is lemon shaped!
                                                                                        I am very passionate about inquiry based learning, children naturally are very inquisitive and are ready to explore and learn more about the world around them. One of my favourite lessons to see the students critical thinking skills is making boats. The students are provided with a variety of materials and using critical thinking they must figure out which boats could float/sink and why this might happen. The students work in groups and this encourages critical thinking. It is always a brilliant lesson to see how the students work together, problem solve and use critical thinking. The lesson is very hands on and the students are able to explain their logic/reasoning in the end.

                                                                                      • #213072
                                                                                        Olivia Smith
                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                          Hi my name is Olivia, I just had second class and will have them again this upcoming year. My favourite space fact is that the moon is lemon shaped!
                                                                                          I am very passionate about inquiry based learning, children naturally are very inquisitive and are ready to explore and learn more about the world around them. One of my favourite lessons to see the students critical thinking skills is making boats. The students are provided with a variety of materials and using critical thinking they must figure out which boats could float/sink and why this might happen. The students work in groups and this encourages critical thinking. It is always a brilliant lesson to see how the students work together, problem solve and use critical thinking. The lesson is very hands on and the students are able to explain their logic/reasoning in the end.

                                                                                        • #213209
                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                            Hi Olivia,

                                                                                            giving 2nd class children a taste of the 3rd/4th class ideas of

                                                                                            investigate the pushing force of water / design and make a boat or raft using an increasing variety of materials, tools and craft-handling skills.

                                                                                            can be super. I tend to use just paper, and see if they can work out the 1st requirement of not letting the water in! Paper is also lightweight, so will float pretty much. Since the science behind why boats float is quite tricky (getting into the volume of the displaced water provides an upwards force called buoyancy) – I tend to like to make rafts first that pretty much float on the surface.

                                                                                          • #210908
                                                                                            Sinead Forde
                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                              My name is Sinead and I am working in a Junior School about to go into my second year of SET. I have always been interested in space and find it fascinating. I am really looking forward to participating in this course. My favourite space fact is that there has been a storm raging on Jupiter for hundreds of years (The Great Red Spot).

                                                                                            • #211197
                                                                                              Sarah Harrington
                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                Hi my name is Sarah and I will be teaching 1st class next year. I enjoy the lessons surrounded by Space and I find there are so many interesting ideas and lessons to introduce to children that allow for active learning. My favourite fact about space is that the sun is a star.

                                                                                                Inquiry based activity that I has been done in my classroom expolored a variety of stars. I started by assessing and exploring the children’s previous knowledge on stars asking questions like; ‘What is a star? Where would we see stars? What colours are stars? etc.’ Then based on this knowledge we watched a slideshow showing different stars. After discussing stars and their colours and shapes the children were given clay to create their own stars.

                                                                                              • #211199
                                                                                                Sarah Harrington
                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                  Hi my name is Sarah and I will be teaching 1st class next year. I enjoy the lessons surrounded by Space and I find there are so many interesting ideas and lessons to introduce to children that allow for active learning. My favourite fact about space is that the sun is a star.

                                                                                                  Inquiry based activity that I has been done in my classroom expolored a variety of stars.  I introduced the lesson by  assessing and exploring the children’s previous knowledge on stars asking questions like; ‘What is a star? Where would we see stars? What colours are stars? Are all stars the same size and shape? etc.’ Then based on this knowledge we watched a slideshow showing different stars and highlighting that different colours mean different levels of heat. We discussed different facts about stars. After discussing stars and their colours and shapes the children were given clay to create their own stars. The children then talked about the star they created in groups and their undertsanding of what a star is.

                                                                                                • #211220
                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                    Hi Sarah,

                                                                                                    knowing that the Sun is a star is something that many of us (who studied astronomy at college and love the topic) take for granted. My twin sister turned to me once, when we were in our 40s, and said “you know what, Frances, the Sun is a star!!” she hadn’t realised it until then. She has 2 masters degrees!

                                                                                                  • #211254
                                                                                                    Anne Breen
                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                      Module One assignment

                                                                                                      I would begin with a simple brainstorming lesson to gauge the children’s current knowledge of gravity. Then I will show some of the videos from the module and explaining that gravity is a force that pulls everything down towards the ground. I will then ask the children if they have noticed how things fall to the ground when they drop them. A whole class discussion will take place.

                                                                                                      We will then make our own inquiry about gravity. We will decide what objects to use and the equipment that is needed. I can list them on the whiteboard and the children can gather them.

                                                                                                      One by one we will make observe the object and make predictions on which objects they think will fall faster or slower. I will record the children’s predictions on the whiteboards.

                                                                                                      To perform the experiment I will stand on a chair to get some height. I will hold two different objects at the same height and I will drop both objects at the same time while the children observe from a safe distance which objects hit the ground first. We will record the results on the whiteboard. We continue this with all the objects we gathered.

                                                                                                      We will  discuss the results at the end. I will ask questions like did all the objects fall at the same speed or different speeds? We will see if their predictions correct or incorrect and discuss this.

                                                                                                      Finally we can conclude that gravity pulls objects down towards the earth and that all objects fall at the same rate.

                                                                                                    • #211333
                                                                                                      Sinead Forde
                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                        An Inquiry-based lesson I like is constructing boats to test if they will float when placed on a body of water.

                                                                                                        Show the children different pictures of/models of boats: large, small, sailboats, boats with engines, etc. Discuss how boats can float on water.

                                                                                                        Can we build a boat that can float in the water? What materials can we try? Predict what materials will be successful in floating. Children use a variety of materials to construct their own boat before testing it in the water to see if it will float.

                                                                                                        Children reflect on their learning and what they may do differently next time/what worked well.

                                                                                                        The children in my class really enjoyed this lesson and some of their creations were really well thought out and effective. There was lots of fun had and ideas shared making this a hands-on, collaborative lesson, even for junior classes.

                                                                                                      • #211408
                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                          Sinead,

                                                                                                          making boats is a lot of fun, but the science can be a little bit tricky. I find it best to start with rafts – where they have to float on the top of the water, and in later classes look at boats that displace water and hence float.

                                                                                                          For those type of boats you can make a simple currach out of plain printer paper and it will last long enough to be tested a few times.

                                                                                                        • #211387
                                                                                                          Bridget O Grady
                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                            Hi, My name is Bridget and I am teaching Early Start.

                                                                                                            My favorite space fact is that there are more stars in the sky than grains of sand on all the beaches on earth.

                                                                                                            For my inquiry base activity  we could look at what material will soak up water best.

                                                                                                            Trigger:Water spill on table or floor .

                                                                                                            What can we use to clean up the spillage.

                                                                                                            Look for suggestions of what will work best from a range of materials presented.

                                                                                                            Will I use, newspaper, tinfoil, cling film, kitchen towel, toilet paper , tea-towel. ???

                                                                                                            Predict which will be the most effective.

                                                                                                            Conduct the investigation by using the various materials to try and wipe up the spill.

                                                                                                            Out all the various materials used which worked best.

                                                                                                            Record results by putting a smiley face on the material that worked best.

                                                                                                             

                                                                                                             

                                                                                                             

                                                                                                          • #211585
                                                                                                            Aoife Purcell
                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                              Hi, My name is Aoife and I am currently teaching Junior Infants. My favourite fact about space is that space is completely silent.

                                                                                                              I enjoyed the suggestions for the lesson on gravity in Module 1 and I think that the children would really enjoy it too. In my infant classroom I would follow a plan like this for the lesson.
                                                                                                              • Introducing the trigger, wondering, discussing, exploring
                                                                                                              • Exploring different types of forces – pulling a chair, jumping etc.
                                                                                                              • Exploring how objects fall
                                                                                                              • Discussion/reflection on what happened during the experiment.

                                                                                                              We like to use a buddy system in our school with 6th class so I think we could extend the lesson by using the older children to help the younger ones design and create a parachute. They would have lots of fun working together to create the parachute and also testing their creations together outside. It would be a good way to show them how a parachute lessens the effect of gravity.

                                                                                                            • #211658
                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                Aoife- I like the planning for buddying – and if 6th class can help, all the better.

                                                                                                                Making simple parachutes is great- use tissue and string to tie a parachute to one of the maths proportional bears and you have an easy activity that shows air resistance slowing down the bear.

                                                                                                              • #212488
                                                                                                                Sinead Devlin
                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                  Hi I am Sinead.

                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                  My favourite fact about space is Mars is the first nearby world that people from Earth will eventually visit. I am interested in the fact that mars is said to have four season similar to earth .

                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                  For Junior infants I like to learn about materials and what materials would be best to make a raincoat/ umbrella and why for our teddy bear.

                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                  The children are given a pack with different materials such as tin foil, paper towels, blue roll, plastic, felt. They are given water and are asked to investigate what material will be best to make the umbrella/ coat. How did they decided on this and why.

                                                                                                                  Or can they think of a better material that would make a perfect raincoat for teddy.

                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                • #212546
                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                    Hi Sinead,

                                                                                                                    if you want to read more about timekeeping on Mars, see this article from 2021.

                                                                                                                    I hadn’t realised that the calendar started in April 1955, but I do know that I am still in my 20s if I count my age in Mars Years.

                                                                                                                    At the start of each Mars mission the science teams tries to keep on Mars time – so they come to work 40 minutes later each day. See this article about it.

                                                                                                                    https://science.nasa.gov/resource/living-on-mars-time/

                                                                                                                    https://www.space.com/perseverance-rover-mission-on-mars-time

                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                    Teddy’s raincoat can be a great prompt for inquiry learning, particularly if you have a range of materials for the children to use to make the raincoat. I find that cultivating a slightly befuddled air is good – and resist the urge to tell the children which is waterproof or not. Claim that you used different materials last time your class did this and you don’t know which of these are waterproof…

                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                  • #212627
                                                                                                                    Sharon Murphy
                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                      Hi Sinead, I love the idea of teddy’s raincoat as a lesson anchor for younger kids and will definitely try it next year with my junior autism class!

                                                                                                                    • #213001
                                                                                                                      Katie-Jo O’Grady
                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                        Hi everyone, I’m Katie-Jo and I have been teaching infants for a number of years now. I absolutely love enquiry based learning especially with the younger classes.

                                                                                                                        My favourite space fact is that 1 million earths can fit inside the sun. Even though the sun is merely considered an average sized star!

                                                                                                                      • #213015
                                                                                                                        Katie-Jo O’Grady
                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                          Hi everyone, I’m Katie-Jo and have been teaching infants for a number of years. This coming September I will be teaching junior & senior.

                                                                                                                          My favourite space fact would be that you can fit 1 million Earths inside of the sun. I think it really heals visualise the scale.

                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                          I absolutely love enquiry based learning and I feel that the problem solving and idea that come from it are never something you could have planned for.

                                                                                                                          A lesson I thoroughly enjoy is exploring materials and specifically waterproof materials. We explore some materials that may or may not change within water first to create a discussion. I always have a sample few materials at the ready but kids can choose things from around the classroom.

                                                                                                                          We then look at the materials that did not change in water, explore pouring water over them etc usually a child will use the word ‘waterproof’ then we discuss what this means? why do we need waterproof materials? we think of times we’ve used waterproof materials eg on the farm wearing wellys and in the rain using umbrellas.

                                                                                                                          I then introduce Teddy – he wants to go to the farm but doesn’t want his beautiful fluffy feet getting wet and has asked the children to help him solve this problem.

                                                                                                                          Kids then problem solve as to how he could walk through the mucky pig pen or go to the pond to feed the ducks without getting wet.

                                                                                                                          We then use our knowledge gained from our materials and change experiment to create welly boots and a coat. Children test materials and record results then together we create a farm proof outfit for Teddy that we have tested and are sure will keep him dry. I then take Teddy to my family farm and share images of him in his waterproof materials nears the pigs and the pond.

                                                                                                                        • #213220
                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                            Katie- Jo,

                                                                                                                            what a super context for the children to engage with for this Design and Make activity. Teddy’s boots are a great prompt and I think it is just brilliant that you take a pic of Teddy on the farm at the end!

                                                                                                                            I am still on the endless hunt for a decent waterproof jacket that doesn’t leave me too sweaty when I wear it, but I guess Teddy doesn’t sweat so he’ll be ok.

                                                                                                                          • #213793
                                                                                                                            Aisling Mathews
                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                              Hi, my name is Aisling and next year I will be teaching SET/learning support in infant classes. My favourite space fact that I learned from my little boy is that the moon around earth is actually lemon shaped!

                                                                                                                            • #213853
                                                                                                                              Aisling Mathews
                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                An inquiry based activity that I have enjoyed doing with my class in the past is making a rainbow and showing the distribution of colours within the rainbow.

                                                                                                                                Materials:

                                                                                                                                coffee filter paper

                                                                                                                                water-based markers

                                                                                                                                water spray bottle

                                                                                                                                Method:

                                                                                                                                The children open up the coffee filter paper and lay it out flat. It naturally makes a butterfly shape so I usually add a pipe cleaner down the middle as the butterfly’s body at the end. I then encourage the children to use  different coloured markers to create a pattern on the filter paper. When they are finished we spray water all over the filter paper butterfly with the spray bottle. I then hang the filter paper up and we watch as the colours begin to separate and bleed into each other to create a beautiful butterfly pattern. Young children are always intrigued with this process and the end result is always stunning. They particularly like to see the black separating into all the colours of the rainbow.

                                                                                                                              • #213876
                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                  Aisling,

                                                                                                                                  making the filter paper butterflies sounds lovely, and if you have one made in advance, that could be the prompt, and the children can choose their colours and predict will they behave the same way.

                                                                                                                                  Useful to have a selection of darker colours which have more mixed dyes in them.

                                                                                                                                • #213862
                                                                                                                                  Alexandra McMahon
                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                    Hi everyone,
                                                                                                                                    My name is Alex and I will be teaching in our middle autism class next year. My favourite space fact is that stars twinkle because their light has to travel through Earth’s atmosphere, which is like a big, moving ocean of air. This air is full of different temperatures and densities, which bend the light in various directions. This bending makes the stars look like they’re twinkling, just like how a penny at the bottom of a swimming pool looks like it’s dancing when you look at it through the moving water.

                                                                                                                                    I would use inquiry based learning through exploration and investigating.I Use a flashlight to represent a star and a clear glass of water mixed with oil to represent Earth’s atmosphere. I would then shine the flashlight through the glass and gently stir the water and observe how the light twinkles.

                                                                                                                                    I would then ask students to draw a picture or write a sentence about what they learned. They could draw Twinkle the star dancing or write about how the air makes stars twinkle.

                                                                                                                                  • #213874
                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                      Alexandra,

                                                                                                                                      flashlight / water as star and atmosphere makes a lovely demonstration that can be a prompt for further investigation. You’ve planned for the children to wonder and explore by writing what they think is going on. Then their questions could pose a starter question for an investigation.

                                                                                                                                      Does the size of the jar make a difference? Does a ‘star’ twinkle more if it goes through more ‘atmosphere’ ?

                                                                                                                                      {Yes, in the case of real stars, which is why Sirius, the brightest star, which is always quite near the horizon from Ireland, looks so twinkly}

                                                                                                                                    • #214143
                                                                                                                                      Katie Harrington
                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                        Hi everyone,

                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                        My name is Katie and I teach Senior Infants. My favourite space fact is that the Voyager 1 contains a golden record with pictures of Earth in case it bumps into some aliens.

                                                                                                                                        An inquiry based activity I did with senior infants last year was learning about exoplanets. After learning about what they were I told them that they were going to become space explorers trying to discover new planets. I divided the class into pairs and gave each class a picture I had made on canva. The picture had a mixture of tiny stars and small circles speckled all around it. The children used flashlights to try and find the tiny circles that were new planets. When they found a planet they circled it. Afterwards the children took turns coming up to the interactive whiteboard where I had the picture on display and marked planets they had found. We ended the activity by each child coming up with a name for one of the planets they found.

                                                                                                                                    • #209585
                                                                                                                                      Eve Conlon
                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                        test post.

                                                                                                                                        • #209721
                                                                                                                                          Gwen Williams
                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                            Hi,

                                                                                                                                            My name is Gwen and I am a behaviour support teacher and Nurture teacher for children aged 4-8 years old.

                                                                                                                                            My favourite space fact is that gravity on the moon is only about 1/6 of that on Earth.  So you weigh less, can jump higher and carrier heavier objects.

                                                                                                                                          • #209769
                                                                                                                                            susan molloy
                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                              Never knew this !! Also your job in school sounds so interesting 🙂

                                                                                                                                            • #209842
                                                                                                                                              Mary Herlihy
                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                Hi Gwen

                                                                                                                                                I find it very interesting that you weigh less on the moon-pity it didn’t work on Earth!!!

                                                                                                                                                I agree your job sounds very interesting. I would be interested to find out more!!!

                                                                                                                                              • #209865
                                                                                                                                                Paula Mc Gee
                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                  Hi. My name is Paula and I will be teaching first class in September.
                                                                                                                                                  A space fact that I like is that the moon is the shape of a lemon. While I appreciate that it is more of a slightly flattened sphere, I love the reaction from children when you say this to them and their curiosity about why this is the case.

                                                                                                                                                • #214146
                                                                                                                                                  Katie Harrington
                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                    I will definitely be sharing this fact with Senior infants next year!

                                                                                                                                                • #209589
                                                                                                                                                  Patrick Carroll
                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                    Hi

                                                                                                                                                    My name is Patrick, I teach 1st and 2nd class.

                                                                                                                                                    My favourite thing about space is the fact that while we know some amount about it, there is still so much that is yet to be discovered if only we could travel far enough to see it.

                                                                                                                                                  • #209591
                                                                                                                                                    Saoirse Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                      My name is Saoirse. I teach Senior Infants. My favourite fact about space is the sun is so massive is contains 99.8% of the mass of our entire solar system.

                                                                                                                                                      • #209605
                                                                                                                                                        Yvonne Kelly
                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                          Also a really interesting fact Saoirse!

                                                                                                                                                      • #209596
                                                                                                                                                        Sinead Shanley
                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                          Hi all,

                                                                                                                                                          I’m Sinéad and I am currently teaching Senior Infants.

                                                                                                                                                          My Favourite Space Facts are that Venus spins in the opposite direction to the rest of the planets in our Solar system and also that Black Holes have an opposite White Holes!

                                                                                                                                                          • #209774
                                                                                                                                                            susan molloy
                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                              Hi my name is Sue and I teach in a junior school in Dublin, my favourite fact about space is that shooting stars can have a range of colours !

                                                                                                                                                            • #210139
                                                                                                                                                              colette browne
                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                I never knew this Susan. Very interesting!

                                                                                                                                                                Colette

                                                                                                                                                              • #210244
                                                                                                                                                                Roisin McLarnon
                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                  Interesting ,will read up on that !

                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                • #210250
                                                                                                                                                                  Roisin McLarnon
                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                    Hi my Name is Roisin and I will be teaching Senior Infants in September .i am really looking forward to this course.

                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                  • #210273
                                                                                                                                                                    Roisin McLarnon
                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                      White holes must read up on them ,although I find black holes very hard to get my head around.!

                                                                                                                                                                    • #211538
                                                                                                                                                                      Laura O’Meara
                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                        I love this fact Sue. I never knew that shooting stars could have a range of colours.

                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                      • #212482
                                                                                                                                                                        Stephanie Mc Cann
                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Susan. That is so interesting that Venus spins in the opposite direction to the rest of our planets.

                                                                                                                                                                      • #209597
                                                                                                                                                                        Saoirse Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                          Teaching an inquiry-based activity on gravity can be a fun and engaging way for students to learn. Here’s how I would teach it in my classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                          1.Introduction: Introduce the concept of gravity to students. Explain that gravity is the force that pulls objects towards each other. Use simple and relatable examples to help them understand.

                                                                                                                                                                          2.Ask Questions: Encourage students to ask questions about gravity. What do they already know? What do they want to learn more about? This will help spark curiosity and guide the direction of the activity.

                                                                                                                                                                          3.Hands-on Experiment: Plan a hands-on experiment that demonstrates the effects of gravity. For example, you can drop objects of different weights and sizes to observe how they fall to the ground. Encourage students to make predictions and record their observations.

                                                                                                                                                                          4.Research: Have students research more about gravity. They can explore how gravity works in space, why objects fall at the same rate regardless of weight, or even the history of our understanding of gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                          5.Discussion: Facilitate a group discussion where students can share their findings, ask questions, and reflect on what they’ve learned. Encourage critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

                                                                                                                                                                          6.Creative Projects: Allow students to showcase their understanding of gravity through creative projects. They can create models, posters, or even skits to demonstrate their knowledge.

                                                                                                                                                                          7.Conclusion: Conclude the activity by summarizing key points about gravity and its importance. Encourage students to continue exploring and asking questions about this fascinating force.

                                                                                                                                                                          My goal in this activity is to encourage curiosity, critical thinking, and active learning.

                                                                                                                                                                          • #209650
                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                              Saoirse,

                                                                                                                                                                              Have you thought about how the framework for inquiry might be used for gravity activities?

                                                                                                                                                                              Here is an example of a senior infant class, with a demonstration of a spinning bucket and how the spinning can balance gravity and stop the water from coming out of the bucket  – this could be a great prompt to get the ideas going.

                                                                                                                                                                              The module gives the example of the very simple ESERO Activity of dropping things – would that be too simple for your Senior Infants?

                                                                                                                                                                              Could you say a bit more about your step  4?

                                                                                                                                                                              Research: Have students research more about gravity. They can explore how gravity works in space, why objects fall at the same rate regardless of weight, or even the history of our understanding of gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                              What books or supports might senior infants need to do this research? Have you videos that you might show them that you can recommend?  Please note that ideas of rate of fall and it being independent of mass is something that would be covered at leaving certificate level in Ireland.

                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                            • #209731
                                                                                                                                                                              Saoirse Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Frances, I would use a variety of different items with the children and let them see that no matter what weight they still fall at the same speed from the same height. When I say research, I mean the children listening to a story and actively trialling different classroom items such as paper, pens, copybooks, glue-sticks, workbooks etc. The ups and down of gravity is a book I’ve used before by David A Adler.

                                                                                                                                                                              • #209743
                                                                                                                                                                                Criona Corroon
                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi,
                                                                                                                                                                                  I did not know that about Venus. How interesting. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                • #209749
                                                                                                                                                                                  Alyson O Rourke
                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                    This looks like a great lesson, very effective and engaging

                                                                                                                                                                                • #209599
                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofmarymc21@gmail.comMary McNamara
                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, I’m Mary and I am (and will be) teaching junior and senior infants. Some love space and know loads, others are mystified but interested.

                                                                                                                                                                                    My current favourite space fact is that Black Holes don’t look like what we thought they did when I was young, and that it took years and years of studying distant points in space (as well as millions of dollars filming Interstellar) to find a more current representation of how light bends around a black hole.

                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209629
                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                        And teams of scientists with the combined light from telescopes around the world have imaged the area around black holes, including the one at the centre of our own Milky Way. You can read more here.

                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210344
                                                                                                                                                                                        Michelle O Mahony
                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree Mary, I’ve seen an awful lot of children coming into Junior Infants in recent years with huge interest in Space and Planets and knowing lots and lots of facts!

                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211588
                                                                                                                                                                                          Aoife Purcell
                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                            I also agree that children are coming in to school with a huge interest in Space, I have  some good videos discussing Space and teaching them about the planets etc and they are mesmerised by them, I have often been asked to play the Space video during a rainy day at break times.

                                                                                                                                                                                          • #213019
                                                                                                                                                                                            Katie-Jo O’Grady
                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                              I agree Mary, I have also found that some children are completely obsessed by the idea and can offload numerous interesting facts about the topic. While others are completely oblivious or really have not had the opportunity to ask and try answer questions about the topic!

                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209601
                                                                                                                                                                                            Yvonne Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                              My name is Yvonne, I am SET in Infants. My favourite fact about space is that an asteroid about the size of a car enters Earth’s atmosphere roughly once a year but it burns up before it reaches us.

                                                                                                                                                                                              • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Yvonne Kelly.
                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209611
                                                                                                                                                                                              Ashling Mccartan
                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi, my name is Ashling and I work in SET with Senior Infants and 1st class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                An interesting fact about space is that if you were to fly to Pluto it would take over 800 years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209639
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love Pluto! Still a planet to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    You can see the images of Pluto sent back by the New Horizons mission, launched in 2006 and passing Pluto in 2015. Of course, this was a fly-by, if we had wanted to put the spacecraft into orbit then the journey would have taken much longer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I sometimes describe Fly-By missions as: “have you ever been on holiday, and you want to see as many sights as possible, so your parent won’t even stop the car and just tells you to take a picture so you can get on to the next destination?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209725
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Kate Muckian
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Ashling,

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I find this so interesting about Pluto and entices me to research more into other planets to see how long it would take to get to all of them especially Neptune as its the furthest planet from Earth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209752
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Fiona Kavanagh
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Ashling, very interesting fact. Thanks for sharing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210480
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Orla Byrne
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The children will love this fact thank you !

                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209641
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Irene Lynch
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi my name is Irene, I will be working with 1st class, my favorite fact about space is that on Mercury a day is twice as long as a year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209642
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sean Flanagan
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi, my name is Seán and I teach 2nd class. My favourite space fact is that scientists estimate there are about 500,000 pieces of space junk today, including fragments from rockets and satellites, and everyday items like spanners dropped during construction of the International Space Station!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209677
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Ursula OConnor
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Very interesting Sean, this fact is a little bit concerning! We have left our human footprint/impact, even in space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #210187
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Michelle McGee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I downloaded the app SkyView to look at the night sky, it was through this that I saw how much space debris is floating in space, this really is something that we need to look into as an international community.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210459
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Michelle – there are some ESA activities on space debris for primary children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There is a Framework for Inquiry to support their use here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209696
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ursula OConnor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      An inquiry based lesson for Infant classes – Exploring the planet Jupiter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -Warm up introduction with familiar song to the class: The Solar System Song

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Ask the children to listen to the song again with just the excerpt about Jupiter – this time trying to recall a new fact they have heard.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2.Gather the children in a circle and introduce the topic of Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system. Show pictures or models of Jupiter and ask if anyone has heard of it before.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Using different sized balls, create a planet earth and planet jupiter to show the children an idea of the size difference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4.Practical exploration: Using Playdough or clay, children engage in making a planet Jupiter and the largest moon – with volcano.Discuss the size and features of Jupiter as they create their playdough planets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      5.Looking at images of Jupiter from https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/all-about-jupiter/en/ – discussing how it looks, describing by size, colour, texture words.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      6.Read “Jupiter, the gassy giant” aloud in circle time with the class. Encourage the children to listen for interesting facts about Jupiter and ask questions about what they have learned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      7. Practise singing the Jupiter facts from the Solar system song. Pairwork – in twos ask pupils to share a fact they know with a friend/ Share their favourite fact with the class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209719
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Ursula,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        is this the book you recommend? https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/161179929-jupiter-the-gassy-giant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The framework of inquiry has been designed to help you planning for inquiry activities that help children learn science through the inquiry process. You might go deeper into the children’s understanding of colour with Jupiter as your theme with this resource from spaceweek.ie https://www.spaceweek.ie/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Gas-Planet-Clouds.pdf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The children could predict which colours they would get when they mix the food colouring – perhaps referring to their understanding of paint.  Then the inquiry process would show them if their understanding was correct.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209747
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ursula OConnor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes, that is the book – I think it is a good one to engage infant learners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thank you , I love that idea for exploring colour in more depth, I feel this way of exploring is also a good way to integrate oral language description and vocabulary so I will definitely look at that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210356
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sinéad Heffernan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Great recommendations for the song and storybook on Jupiter, great lesson introduction.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209793
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Claire Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Ursula

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I love this lesson as you have included the story book and images for the children to engage with . Children love singing and making things so this lesson has everything .I look forward to trying it

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209645
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Karen Walsh
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi my name is Karen, I’m Senior infants SET. I love Space, Iv always had an interest in space from a young child. I love the face that space is completely silent. I look forward to this course.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209647
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yvonne Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                An inquiry-based lesson using Bee-Bots to simulate space exploration

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1.Introduction: Start by introducing the Bee-Bots and explaining the goal of the activity – reaching different planets. They will be displayed on charts in the classroom, Programme your BeeBot to go to Neptune, Jupiter…

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I will elicit information from the children about the solar system and the planets. They can gather information about each planet’s size, distance from the sun, and unique characteristics.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3.The children will programme the Bee-Bots to simulate traveling to different planets. They can create a map or layout representing the solar system and use the Bee-Bots to navigate to each planet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                4.I will encourage students to think critically about the distance between planets, obstacles in space, and how the Bee-Bots can overcome challenges to reach their destination.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                5. After the activity, the children will reflect on their experience. I will ask them what they learned about the solar system, coding, and problem-solving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209654
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Eleanor Mc Sweeney
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Yvonne,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have often seen the Bee Bots on various websites. Great to get some practical ideas on how to use them! Haven taken note

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209683
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Irene Lynch
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Such a lovely idea using the Bee Bots, I think there is so much the children can learn with hands on materials. I’m sure this will keep many children engaged.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209838
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Laura Ryan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love BeeBots. Lots of Education Centres have BeeBots available for schools to use. I only found this out last year. Good to know if your school aren’t in a position to purchase them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209912
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jennifer Dempsey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I’ve never used BeeBots before in school! Seems like a nice lesson Yvonne! Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210673
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Elaine Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We are looking at adding BeeBots to our classroom, this would be a very cool idea.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209675
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yvonne – I love this idea. It really mirrors actual space missions where the instructions have to be sent to the missions in advance because of signal time delays.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I have done a similar analog with children, where they have to choose from a set of cards which instruction to send to the ‘spacecraft’ and then one child is the ‘radio wave’ and they have to walk to the ‘spacecraft’ who continues moving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It was a lot of fun when ‘turn left’ arrived at the space craft long after the spacecraft had passed the planet. The activity was originally part of the New Horizons education resources, I’ll see if I can find the original link.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209681
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Laura Kenny
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Yvonne, the beebots are a great idea to use in terms of learning about space and planets in the classroom, while keeping the lesson interactive and enjoyable!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209931
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Deirdre Tiernan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love this idea Yvonne. My school actually has BeeBots but I never thought of using them in such an imaginative and interesting way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209984
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Christine O’Brien
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Yvonne,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There’s a handy Beebot Space grid on twinkl that I use with my class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There are also direction card to help with early coding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210553
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Orla Glynn
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Christine,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thank you for this. Our students love Beebots and I did not know about this resource.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211335
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sinead Forde
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is a brilliant idea for a lesson. We have the Bee Bots available in our school so I will definitely be trying this out next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211471
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Daire Dwyer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Yvonne, great ideas there, there are loads of Bee Bot resources available online for free, Twinkl is very good and TTRS is a good source of resources at a price …… I have used Bee Bots for numerous different topics in the past and using them for this topic has so much potential.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211661
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ashling Mccartan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This is a great way to use Beebots in the classroom. I will definitely be giving this a try next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #213192
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Emma O Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We have Bee-Bots in school and I never thought to interrogate them like this when teaching a subject like space. Thanks for the detailed ideas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #213728
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Cliodhna Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                This sounds like a fantastic way to use BeeBots. We do not have them in our school but I would be interested in borrowing them from our Education Centre to try this out!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #214187
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Niamh O Sullivan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Our school has ordered Beebots for next year. Great to get lesson ideas for them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209649
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Claire Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi ,my name is Claire and I work in SET with Junior and Senior Infants.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An interesting fact about space is that the number of stars in the Milky                   Way is probably higher than  the number of humans that have ever been                  born .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209655
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Eleanor Mc Sweeney
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <p class=”MsoNormal”>Hi, my name is Eleanor. I am working in a DEIS 1 school and will be working with Infants in September. I am really looking forward to getting stuck into this course and learning about some fun ways to teach space in infants. I feel that space is often brushed over in the Junior end of the school based and in my own experience only done thoroughly at the senior end of primary school.</p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <p class=”MsoNormal”></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <p class=”MsoNormal”>My favourite space fact is that the core of a star reaches 16 million degrees celsius!</p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <p class=”MsoNormal”></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <p class=”MsoNormal”>Inquiry based activity: I would do a lesson with infants to figure out what materials are waterproof. I would give this a fun context e.g. help the teddy bear to find a coat that would be suitable for the rain! I would put children into pairs and give them packs. In the packs I would have droppers, squares of material e.g. plastic, tinfoil, tissue, paper. Children will test the materials to figure out which materials are waterproof and which are not. We will discuss afterwards, which material would suit best plastic v tinfoil as both are waterproof.</p>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209686
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Eleanor,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Teddy raincoats is a lovely way to bring the Inquiry process to the infant classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The prompt is appropriate and visual – we don’t want teddy to get wet!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The materials for investigation are easy to source and only small quantities are needed. Droppers can make it feel ‘sciencey’ and are easy to get if you save children’s medicine droppers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pair work allows the children to chat to each other about what they think will happen and to share their predictions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Class discussion at the end leads to a ‘next step’ that is suitable and can be a new investigation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        You can see this in English and Irish from Curious Minds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209760
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sinead Shanley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Eleanor,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think this is a lovely extension lesson to the materials lesson in module one. It definitely allows the children to apply their learning from that lesson to your one above. I would also like to note the importance of collaborative work during STEM and science lessons particularly in developing the science skills. Pair work and group work are vital to allow the children to discuss, share ideas, challenge themselves and others, promoting critical thinking and problem solving skills. It encourages active learning and inclusion for all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209835
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Fiona Daly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This was my first idea when trying to come up with a concept for the task. I ended up going with something different but would definitely do this inquiry based lesson in the future. The younger classes would love the idea of working out how to keep their teddies dry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209927
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Patrick Carroll
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Eleanor- that’s a really nice lesson and one that I think all junior classes would enjoy doing. Working together in groups is great too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209674
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ursula OConnor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi, My name is Ursula and I teach senior infants. My favourite fact about space is that Jupiter’s moon has hundreds of volcanoes!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209676
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Laura Kenny
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi, I’m Laura, I have worked in Senior Infants for three years since I’ve come out of college! A fact I find interesting about space is that there is no sound in space!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In the context of junior classroom education, particularly with concepts such as “push” and “pull,” this method can be exceptionally powerful. These fundamental physics concepts form the basis for understanding force and motion, offering young learners a hands-on and intuitive grasp of the world around them. This reflection explores the implementation and impact of an inquiry-based lesson on push and pull in a junior classroom, while also bringing in the concepts of gravity etc in an informal way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209720
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Laura,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Which activity about pushes and pulls would you do with junior infants? Would you use the example from the module of toy cars being moved in as many ways as you can think?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209866
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Suzy Furlong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi I am Suzy. I teach infants currently.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I also love the fact that there is no sound in space and it is completely silent. This is probably highlighted by the lack of silence in our profession 😉

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209678
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sean Flanagan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Teaching second class students about push and pull forces through an inquiry-based activity can be engaging and effective. It is a topic that is already taught in second class and this has made me think more critically about this topic. You could start by introducing the concept of push and pull forces using simple language and relatable examples, like pushing a toy car as mentioned. Encourage students to share their own experiences of push and pull in everyday life to make the topic more relevant and understandable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Next, set up hands-on activities where students can explore push and pull forces. For example, provide materials like toy cars, ramps, strings, and balloons for students to experiment with different scenarios. Ask guiding questions to prompt critical thinking, such as “What happens when you push the car harder?” or “How can you make the balloon move faster?” This could be furthered by using a ramp to explore push forces or expanded to include friction from different materials when pushing/ pulling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Encourage students to work in small groups to observe, test, and record their findings. Whiteboards could be used to plan or sketch diagrams of experiments or to record predictions.  Finally, gather students together to discuss their observations, share their conclusions, and reflect on their learning experiences.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209680
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Irene Lynch
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Creating an inquiry-based activity on gravity for 7-year-olds can be both fun and educational. The key is to keep the concepts simple and engaging while encouraging curiosity and exploration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Activity: Exploring gravity with falling objects.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Materials needed:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A variety of small toys

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        stopwatch or timer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ruler or measuring tape

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        a note book for recording

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        a large open space to test your objects

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Introduction:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Begin with a simple explanation of gravity: “Gravity is a force that pulls everything down towards the ground.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Ask the children if they have noticed how things fall to the ground when they drop them. Encourage them to share their observations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Predictions:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Show the children the different objects you have. Ask them to predict which objects they think will fall faster or slower and why.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Write down these predictions in the notebook.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Experiment – Dropping Objects:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Stand on a chair or a small step to get some height.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Hold two different objects at the same height.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Count down and drop both objects at the same time while another child uses the stopwatch to measure the time it takes for each to hit the ground.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Record the times in the notebook.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Observation and Discussion:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Repeat the experiment with different pairs of objects
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Ask the children to observe which objects fall faster or slower.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Discuss the results: Did the objects fall at the same speed or different speeds? Were their predictions correct
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Conclusion and Reflection: 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Summarize the key points:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Gravity pulls objects down, and all objects fall at the same rate if we ignore air resistance.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Ask the children what they learned and if there were any surprises
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209684
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sean Flanagan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Irene,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thank you for sharing that lesson. It sounds very interesting and engaging. I will be trying this in my class next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210393
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chloe Buckley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The Kids would love this one thanks for sharing Irene!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Chloe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209730
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Irene,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                dropping objects is always fun and lots of learning can happen. I’m not so sure about using a stop watch unless you have some sort of parachute, since the objects will be falling quite quickly and the errors in stop and starting the timer will be greater than the difference between the two objects.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I’d suggest just having a race- and the one that hits the ground first is the winner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                With a much older class you might use the acoustic timer from phyphox and make a sound as the object is dropped and then the phone can pick up the sound of the landing and stop the timer. When I tried this just now, the time for the object to drop was 0.64 seconds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209768
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Criona Corroon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Having a race is a great idea.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209699
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Claire Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Teaching an inquiry based activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Strand  :Energy and Force          Strand Unit    : Force

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Learning objective   :The children should be enabled to investigate how forces act on objects

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Engage : I’m going to Smyths to buy a fast vehicle for my 5 year old son. Using toy cars/trucks/lorries etc from play box I’d ask the children which one should I buy that would be the fastest. Use the question ‘I wonder?’ Invite the children to explore.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Investigate :    Present  different size ,weight ,shape, number of wheeled vehicle Predict : Get the children to predict the fastest over a smooth surface /rough surface /on an incline   -record their predictions on the board

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Conduct the investigation :  Divide the children into small groups to conduct their investigation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Share /Interpret data ;  Report back their findings

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Reflect :Teacher reflect if children achieved the learning objective /Adapt in future to improve results

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209758
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Claire,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      you can see the same article I mentioned earlier, that shows an American example of implementing children’s ideas about forces with ramp and toys.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Fair testing may go out the window with such a range of ideas, but this can be included in teacher discussion with each group – by asking “how do you know that the size of the truck made the difference – could it have been the how steep the ramp was?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210515
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Lucy O Mahony
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love your trigger question. I can just imagine your pupils all trying to find the fastest car for your son. Children love to investigate and discuss which is better and why when there is a purpose.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209713
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Alyson O Rourke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My name is Alyson. I will be teaching Junior infants next year. My favourite thing about teaching Space is that the opportunities are endless

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209714
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Kate Muckian
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          test

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209715
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kate Muckian
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi all.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Kate. I was in SET this year and will be in Junior Infants in September.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My favourite space fact is that Earth is that it is the only known planet where water exists in all three states- solid (ice), liquid (water), and gas (water vapour) naturally on its surface.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have always loved space and love teaching it to hear all the questions kids have on the mystical place that Space is.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209722
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Kate Muckian
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Post a reflective piece on how you would use one inquiry-based activity in your
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              classroom to the forum (150 words min).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              “Solar System Adventure.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Start:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              A brief storytelling session where students learn about different planets and space objects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Middle:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Each student given a specific planet, moon, or other space body to investigate. Provided with resources, such as books, interactive websites, and videos.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Students will question their planet. “What is the weather like on Venus?” or “What are the rings of Saturn made of?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Use the resources to gather information, draw pictures, and create simple models or dioramas to represent their findings.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Collaboration: students will be grouped into “space teams”.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Share their discoveries and discuss the unique features of their planets etc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Creates a poster- include drawings, fun facts, and any models they’ve made.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Present their findings to the class, explaining what they have learned and answer questions.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Reflection: ask children what they’ve learned and ask them if they have portrayed all important information in their drawings. This hands-on approach makes learning fun and memorable. It also teaches important skills like teamwork, creativity, and critical thinking, which are essential for their overall development.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209813
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Kate,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  would this work for Junior Infants? Are there specific websites or videos that you would recommend for them to use as resources?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  There is a lovely way to engage the children around the question of the weather on Venus – developed by Dr Elizabeth Tasker of JAXA. She compares Venus to a person who is in the Sahara (where it is hot) but is wearing a thick coat (the atmosphere of Venus is really thick!). This could be linked to the children’s coats and how their coats should be chosen with weather in mind. Curious Minds explores this more fully with “Investigating Children’s Coats” in English and Irish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209751
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Fiona Kavanagh
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi all, my name is Fiona. I am a senior infant teacher who is looking forward to learning lots about space. My favourite space fact is that it takes on average only 3 days to reach the moon by spacecraft!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Inquiry based activity:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Creating mice-rockets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Each pair will be given a round piece of coloured card which they will fold into a 3D cone shape. The children can then use their imagination to add decoration and design to their cone to create a mouse (ears, tail, nose, whiskers). This allows for individuality.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Challenge: how far can you shoot your mice rocket using an empty bottle?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The children will have to explore the various ways they can move their mice rockets and share with the class.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Aim: using the empty bottle, place the mouse rocket on top of open empty bottle. Using two hands bang either side of the bottle, causing the force of the air to leave through the top of the bottle and send the little mice rockets flying!!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lots of laughs and giggles as mice fly all over the place. This can be furthered into a classroom challenge of which mouse can travel furthest! Also another further enquiry could be ‘if we change the size/shape of the bottle will the rocket travel further or less?’
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Results: The harder the bang/push of air from the bottle i.e. the force, the further the rocket will travel.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209790
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Fiona,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love rocket mice – it is a favourite of our “Move It” workshop for Junior and Senior Infants.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I like to give the children different colour mice, so that they can then respond to “what colour mouse works best?” and explore the difference between different children launching vs the colour.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209851
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Carol anne Savery
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is a great idea! I hadn’t heard of that one before. Infants would love it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #213194
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Emma O Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rocket Mice, i think my class would love this and i love seeing the individuality in each creation and the deign element would give a sense of ownership. Could be interesting to see the differences in those that add big ears, long tails etc and see is there a difference in the height. Great discussions to be had afterwards I reckon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #214189
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Niamh O Sullivan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Love this idea. I like that the materials are simple enough that each child can design and participate with their own mouse. Sometimes during group experiments quieter children can get a little sidelined.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209753
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sinead Shanley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>An Inquiry Based Lesson for My Classroom. ‘ A Safer landing’ How can I change the speed of a rolling object as it falls towards the ground? Inspiration- Marble runs</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”> </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Strand: Energy and Forces  </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Strand Unit: Forces</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Curriculum Objective: investigate how forces act on objects through experimenting with different materials</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Skills Development:Questioning, Investigating, Experimenting</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”> </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Trigger: Oops a lego ball drops to the ground and smashes.</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Wonder: I wonder could we help the ball to get to the ground a safer way using some of our junk materials. (toilet roll tubes, masking tape, egg cartons, cardboard.)</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Explore the materials and discuss ideas.</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”> </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Starter question: Can we build a some ramps and tunnels to help the ball travel to the ground in a slower safer manner using our materials along a wall.</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Predictions: Children state and record ideas and their reasoning.</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Conducting the investigation by constructing ramps/runs for the lego ball to fall safely to the ground without breaking.</span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Share and interpret the results. What worked best? </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”> </span></p>
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            <p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin-bottom: .0001pt; line-height: normal;”><span style=”font-size: 13.5pt; font-family: ‘Times New Roman’,serif; mso-fareast-font-family: ‘Times New Roman’; color: black; mso-fareast-language: EN-IE;”>Applying our learning and making connections to build class marble runs in Aistear. </span></p>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Sinead Shanley. Reason: java
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209764
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Alyson O Rourke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              An inquiry based activity to explore the different distances to the Sun based on planet location in 2nd class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I would introduce the lesson by showing the children a photograph of the different planets. I would question the children on the distance of each Planet to the Sun.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Questioning: would occur surrounding closest planets to the sun and furthest away planets and how this could effect the planet.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Questioning would also provide me with an opportunity to elicit the children’s prior knowledge on the planets and the Sun.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Next, I would call up different children and provide them with a photograph of a planet. The children need to rearrange themselves in order of closest and furthest away to the sun.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The other children would then be provided with distance in kilometeres on cards.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Together, the children need to predict which distance corresponds to which planet.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Seeing the children stand at the top of the classroom with the planet pictures would help and this activity would also encourage co-operative learning and teamwork.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Throughtout the lesson, the teacher would question the children on their choices and ask them to explain their reasoning.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              At the end of the lesson, the teacher will call out the distance with the correct planet.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This lesson incorporates Maths and measures. It also provides endless opportunites for integration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209794
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Alyson,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You can find some activities on solar system and scales here and in Irish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  and the club resource from spaceweek.ie has a table with the steps for a walking solar system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This might be useful to extend the learning to show the spacing of the planets, which is very unexpected.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  so instead of just

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The children need to rearrange themselves in order of closest and furthest away to the sun.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ordering themselves, they can try to space themselves out as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This can then link nicely to your question of “how this could effect the planet.” Children might find out about how temperature varies with distance from a heat source – and they could use a radiator in winter as the heat source. Children’s predictions could be tested to develop and confirm their scientific understanding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209767
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Criona Corroon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  HHi, I’m Criona.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I will be teaching junior/senior infants in September. I think teaching space to infants will be fun and engaging and look forward to learning more by completing this course.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mindmap
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Space
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  / | \
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Planets Stars
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  / | \
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Earth Sun Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  / | /
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mars Venus
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  \ /
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Satellite
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  | |
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Asteroid
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  | |
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Galaxy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Comets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  | |
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Nebulae

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  International Space station.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An Interesting space fact:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The international space station is visible from Earth: After the moon, the ISS is the second brightest object in our night sky. You can even see it without a telescope as it flies 320 kilometers above us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209776
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Criona Corroon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Reflection:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Engage:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o I introduce the topic of space using captivating images or short videos related to astronauts, planets, or stars.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o I encourage children to discuss and predict methods astronauts might use to purify and recycle water in space.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Investigate:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o I pose a starter question: “How do astronauts purify water in space?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o In groups, children simulate the purifying process by removing solid dirt from a mixture.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o We discuss reasons behind predictions and record our thoughts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Take the Next Step:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o We explore how invisible impurities might be removed from the mixture.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o I emphasize the importance of fair testing (consistent conditions, controlled variables).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4. Reflect:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    o After the activity, we reflect on what went well and how we could improve next time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209812
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Criona,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Curious Minds ESERO CPD which has been offered to schools has a workshop “The Journey to Space” which touches on this exact activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We haven’t included the full activity in this course, since I felt some of it was a bit too much for Junior Classes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The video we used in that is the Chris Hadfield talking about recycling water aboard the ISS – you can find it here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The cleaning dirty water outline is “Can You Live on Mars?” from esero.ie.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think it works well as a Design and Make activity, with children testing their predictions by making a filtration system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209827
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofmarymc21@gmail.comMary McNamara
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ooh, I like this idea! Just enough “icky” (recylced water – in all its forms!) to engage some of the outliers!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209779
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Fiona Daly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I’m Fiona, although I’m teaching 6th Class on September I am very interested in learning about Space and using what I learn in tye future. I’m sure I might be able to adapt some of the resources and information for an older class. I don’t have a favourite Space fact but I find the whole universe fascinating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209815
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Carol anne Savery
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi ,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I’m Carol Anne and I’m in S.E.N this year but I will have infants next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My favourite space fact is that Venus is the hottest planet although Mercury is closest to the sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209828
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofmarymc21@gmail.comMary McNamara
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Objective: Children will explore the concept of gravity by observing and discussing how and why objects fall to the ground.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Materials:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -A variety of small objects (e.g., feather, paperclip, toy car, ball) (if outside, use natural object like leaves, sticks, and stones)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -A clear container filled with water
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -A heavy object and a light object (e.g., a rock and a feather)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -A picture book about gravity (The Gravity Tree: The True Story of a Tree That Inspired the World)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Introduction:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Begin by asking the children if they’ve ever dropped something and watched it fall to the ground.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Show them a ball and ask, “What do you think will happen if I let go of this ball?” Let them predict.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Activity 1: Drop and Observe:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -One by one, drop different objects from the same height and let the children observe what happens.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Ask guiding questions like:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              —-“Did it fall fast or slow?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              —-“Did it go straight down or did it float?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -After each drop, discuss their observations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Activity 2: Floating and Sinking:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Show the children the clear container filled with water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Drop a heavy object and a light object into the water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Ask, “What do you notice? Why do you think the objects behave differently in water?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Discussion:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Explain in simple terms that gravity is a force that pulls objects toward the ground.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Read “The Gravity Tree: The True Story of a Tree That Inspired the World”  to reinforce the concept with illustrations and stories.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Closing Activity:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Let the children each choose an object to drop and describe what they think will happen and why.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Encourage them to share their thoughts and discoveries with the group.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Wrap-Up:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Ask, “What new thing did we learn today about why things fall down?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              -Recap the day’s activities and what they learned about gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              (PS – for those interested, link to the book: https://annacrowleyredding.com/books/the-gravity-tree-the-true-story-of-a-tree-that-inspired-the-world/)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209862
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sean Furlong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thank you for the link to this book. I will have a look into that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209876
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Barbara Farrell
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There are some lovely ideas in this lesson and helpful resources which I will have a look at.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209833
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Fiona Daly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Module 1: How I would use one inquiry-based activity in my classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Strand- Materials

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Strand Unit- Properties and Characteristics of Materials

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Learning Objective- . Explore, investigate, identify and recognise ways of keeping things cool.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Trigger- Picture of icelollies in the sun, melting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wonder- Why are they melting? How can we stop them from melting? What are insulators? What are conductors?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Exploring- Discuss how quickly/ slowly the ice-lollies melts? Examine cool bags, items that are used for keeping things cool. Show the children the various materials which you have brought in and ask them: “Which of these materials do you think would be the best for keeping ice lollies cool?” “Next best”, etc. “How do you think we could carry out a fair test to try to answer this question?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Starter Question- What material do you think will slow down the melting of the ice lolly?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Predictions- Record these

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Investigation- Groups of children use a different material and cover the icelollies. Discuss fair testing. What will be the same (layers of material, size of material, same icelolly type, all in the shade or all in the sunlight? What will be different, materials used?. Control: unwrapped icelolly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sharing- What happened? Sharing and interpreting results.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209834
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Laura Ryan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I’m Laura and I teach Junior Infants in a school in Carlow. My favourite space fact that there are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209840
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Laura,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I love this space fact, and even more the riff on it from the science cartoon XKCD “What If?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209884
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Laura Ryan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks for that link Frances.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209861
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sarah Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This is a mindblowing fact which I’ve never heard before.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210930
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Susan Lawlor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wow, Laura, that’s a great fact – and exciting because most (if not all) children will have been to the beach.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209836
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Mary Herlihy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi my name is Mary. I am currently a SET teacher. I do a lot of in class teaching and I thought this course would be very helpful especially in the area of Aistear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My interesting space fact-The hottest planet in our solar system is 450C

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                .How you would use one enquiry based activity in your classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Students have questions that they are hungry to answer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Use Trigger question –Oops I have spilled water what will I use to clean it up?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Brainstorm ideas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Exploring the materials you have to clean up the spillage

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What are the materials like

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Similarities/ Differences

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Have you seen or used the materials before

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Predict- Which material would work best?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Conduct the Investigation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Spill water on table /Tray

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Use a material at a time to soak up the water

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Observe which one they think works best

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Record results-Put a smiley face next to the material that worked best . Put a sad face next to the material that worked worst.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Interpret the results

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Make a pictogram using smiley faces of the results.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Extension- Which material would you use to make a coat for Teddy?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Teacher Reflection on activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209843
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mary,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    is there a particular way you might use this activity in Aistear teaching?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The prompt might arise from tidying up the classroom, or you might place a plastic cup in a precarious position and give it a nudge when the time is right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    What materials would you have handy in the classroom or would you be able to get easily?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209848
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mary Herlihy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209849
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mary Herlihy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      For Aistear teaching you could incorporate what they learned about materials and when it comes to tidying the kitchen area/ resturaunt spillages -ask them what materials would work best

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Items handy in the classroom for experimentation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Paper

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Tissue

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Kitchen roll

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Crepe paper

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      fabric from art boxes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209850
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Carol anne Savery
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Class : Junior Infants

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Engage:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Trigger: Tell the children I am going to show them a magic trick. Using a ‘boat’ constructed from  paper with a paperclip attached to the bottom on a piece of paper and a magnet on the bottom. Use the magnet to move the boat .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wondering : Think/ pair /share  on how the boat moved.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Exploring : In groups children use magnets to move boats

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Investigate:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Starter question: What other materials do magnets attract?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Predicting: Looking at the materials provided – plastic bottle tops, card, coins, metal dinky cars, plastic topper, pencils , scissors.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Conducting the investigation: In small groups (each with set of magnets and materials) take one material at a time and see if it will stick to the magnet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sharing : using two large signs on the ground for each group ask the children to sort the materials into those that magnets will attract and those they do not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Taking the next step:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Applying Learning:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What other materials could we use to attach to the bottom of the boats to make them move?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Children attach other metallic objects to the ‘boats’ to make them move when the magnet is under the paper.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Teacher reflection

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        How did this activity go?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What improvements could I make?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Were the learning objectives actualised?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209857
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sean Furlong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi I am Sean I teach in a senior boys school. My favourite space fact is:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          One million earths could fit inside the sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It makes me reflect on our significance and reminds me not to sweat the small stuff 🙂

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210028
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Sean,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I like that space fact. I find even more mind blowing is the fact that a millions sounds like such a big number, but you can have a million of something in your classroom really easily.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I like showing a 1-cm cube and then make a bigger cube from 3 meter sticks (two on the floor and 1 at right angles to them – showing three sides of a cube – ask them to imagine the other sides).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              How many cubic cm are in the cubic m….? (100*10o*100 = 1 million).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209858
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sarah Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi all,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My name is Sarah, I am currently support teaching for Senior Infants but will be taking Senior Infants mainstream in September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My favourite fact about space is that there are more stars in the milky way than the number of humans that have ever been born.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I chose this course as I feel that Space is one of those areas that captures the imagination no matter what age you are as there is always more to learn.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              A very simple inquiry -based activity that I have used time and time again is Making Rice Krispie buns.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The materials needed are very simple-Cooking chocolate, Rice Krispies, A bowl and Spoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Before starting I would hold up a few bottle of different household items drink and would teach children the word liquid if they did not already know it. I would also hold up blocks and some other classroom items and talk about they are solid.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I would discuss and question the children on what will happen to the solid bar of chocolate when we put it into the microwave and inadvertently we are discussing states of matter- introducing the concept without overwhelming the children with very complicated language.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Sarah Breen. Reason: Cannot see what i am typing- is this a technical issue
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209992
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Donna Mcevoy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Sarah…I love you using your inquiry as the rice crispie buns. I often do this but more from a mathematical prescriptive with senior infants and I love the idea of turning it into a STEM lesson. It is such a good way of looking at materials and their properties and so engaging also. They could make their predictions and discuss what would happen prior to the activity. Key questions could be asked throughout and children could discuss their outcomes and talk about what might happen if they used different materials. I must now see baking/cooking as a link not only with Maths but with STEM.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Donna Mcevoy.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210032
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Sarah,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    cooking as inquiry – brilliant!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I can see that children might try different amounts of melting time — does it get melted a lot, a little? … trying to quantify that is great maths.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    What happens if you have too much chocolate and not enough rice krispies… again, really simple to predict and test.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Beautiful links to measures. I’d offer different pre-measured amounts for the younger children, and bowls and different measures for older children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209859
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sean Furlong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Using an inquiry-based activity in the classroom can significantly enhance students’ engagement and understanding of scientific concepts. Here’s how I might implement it:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I would begin by introducing a real-world problem or question related to space exploration, such as “How can we design a sustainable habitat for astronauts on Mars?” Provide students with background information and relevant resources. Organize students into small groups and guide them to brainstorm potential solutions, encouraging them to ask questions and conduct research.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Facilitate hands-on experiments and simulations using resources, such as building models or conducting simulations of Martian environments. As students work through their inquiries, I would prompt them to make observations, collect data, and analyze their findings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Throughout the process, I would encourage critical thinking and problem-solving. Concluding with a class discussion where groups present their solutions and reflect on their learning. This approach fosters collaboration, creativity, and a deeper understanding of scientific principles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209871
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Paula Mc Gee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Sean. I really like this activity as you are helping the children to focus the research by providing background information and relevant resources but also giving them the autonomy to come up with solutions to the problem in groups. The final presentation I find works well along with the opportunity for other students to ask questions and offer possible modifications and improvements. I would often let the groups revisit their project after this step to allow them to think about advice they have received from peers and make any changes they wish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210035
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Sean,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Mars as a topic is supported by some of the ESERO resources, and spaceweek.ie has a Mars resource in English and Irish. ESA have this excellent resource too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Google Earth (choose Mars at the top) can let children view Mars up close and understand the environment that their habitat has to withstand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A habitat is an example of using the Framework for Inquiry to support Design and make, so the plan is vital. This is how they will connect their science understanding to their design skills.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209867
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Paula Mc Gee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Learning Objectives:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          design and make a boat that will float
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          explore the relationship between the shape of the boat and the weight it will carry
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          To engage the children I will ask them to roll a piece of plasticine into a ball and drop it into the basin of water. Did it sink or float?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Predict: could we get the plasticine to float?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ask the children to play around with the plasticine to see if they can get it to float.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Children record the results in 2 boxes: sink and float. They would do this by simply drawing the shape of the plasticine in the relevant box e.g. draw a ball in sink
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Look at some record sheets as a class and discuss the shapes that floated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Wonder- What shape floats best?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Next steps: look at pictures of boats and their shape. Watch video of a boat cutting through the water. Discuss what we see.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Design and make: make a boat with plasticine that will float and carry as many passengers (peas) as possible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210057
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Paula,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Your plan clearly references the Inquiry process as outlined in the Framework for Inquiry. The play with the plasticine is essential for them to be able to make a prediction, so I’d let them have some directed play at the beginning as they try to shape the plasticine so that it doesn’t sink – and then I’d say “I wonder if this could be a boat?” and then let them share their predictions about the boat shape and which boat will be best.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209875
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Barbara Farrell
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Inquiry based learning is an approach to learning that encourages children to engage in problem solving and experimental learning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Strand – Energy and Forces

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Strand Unit- Fores

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Lesson – Investigating Slopes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Resources – Books or blocks of equal height, empty kitchen rolls cut in half to create the slope, marbles, toy cars.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Background Information –  When a marble or toy car is let go at the top of a slope it is pulled down the slope by the force called gravity. This lesson investigates the distance they travel depending on the angle of the slope. Further exploration can be carried out through changing the surface of the slope and changing the surface onto which they run.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Introduction – Begin by asking the children to discuss what is a slope? Children may use the word steep or goes up o describe it. Ask the children what do you notice when you walk or cycle up a slope / down a slope? There is a concept cartoon which would allow discussion around this topic by Brendan Keogh and Stuart Naylor ‘Starting points for Science’

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Development – Place a marble at the top of a ramp (kitchen roll cut in half, with one end propped up by a book to create slope)and ask:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What will happen when you let the marble go? What will happen if you make the ramp higher? i.e add more books. What will happen if we make the ramp really high? How can we slow down the marble after travelling down the ramp?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Children explore these questions with hands on exploration work. They can use blu tack to make the distance the marble or car travels with each change in slope height.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Discussion and Conclusion- As the children to share their findings. Did the height of the slope change the distance traveled. Why do you think this happened? Can you think of anywhere slopes re useful? Examples for trolleys in supermarkets or wheelchairs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Further Exploration – Possible areas for follow up activities are what surface would best slow down or stop the marble or car for example sand. the children can create longer slopes and examine if the length of the slope makes any difference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #210069
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks for sharing this Barbara. Slopes is a great activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I vary it slightly by using pipe lagging, cut in half and given out in 1m lengths. Children can then make very long marble runs and really get a sense of how the height at the start of the tube affects the speed of the marble along the run

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #209883
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Laura Ryan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An inquiry based learning activity that we have enjoyed in my classroom is based on materials and change.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Strand: Materials

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Strand Unit: Materials and change

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Curriculum Objective: Explore the effects of heating and cooling on everyday items.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Engage:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Trigger: Have the children arrive in after break to fine some toys from our classroom frozen in a block on ice on the tuff tray.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wondering: I wonder how we could melt the ice quickly so we can play with our toys again…

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Exploring: Brainstorming or Think/Pair/Share-have children come up with some ideas as to how to could do this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Investigate:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Starter Question: Which material will speed up the ice melting?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Children will have water, tin foil and salt available to them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Predicting: By drawing a smiley face on a worksheet children will use predict which material they think will speed up the melting process.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Conducting the investigation:  In this experiment children will test 4 different items to see if any of them affect how fast ice melts. We will use sand, salt, tin foil and baking soda.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The children will work in small groups. They will place an equal number of ice cubes in bowls and sprinkle them with each substance. We will have one bowl  with nothing sprinkled on it to act as a control.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sharing: Using iPads the children will take pictures every 10 minutes to record the process so that the children can share their results with the other groups in the class. They will record their final results on the same worksheet they made their predictions on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Taking the next steps:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Applying Learning: Chat about why we salt the roads during the winter time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  During playtime have the children free polar animals from ice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Challenge the children to construct containers that would stop the ice cubes from melting for the longest time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210212
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Rachael Gill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Laura

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have taught this lesson before too and it worked really well. I like the idea of using ipads to share results. I will definitely try it again in the future using the ipads.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209885
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Suzy Furlong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Exploring The Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Students will explore the Moon, learning about its surface and features through observation and hands-on activities.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Materials:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Pictures of the Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Playdough or clay
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Plastic craters, rocks, and other small objects
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Flashlights
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Introduction:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Show pictures of the Moon.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Ask, “What do you see on the Moon?” and “What do you think the Moon is made of?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Introduce the main question: “What does the surface of the Moon look like?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Engagement:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Share a short video or story about astronauts on the Moon.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Discuss the features they observed, like craters and rocks.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Exploration:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Provide playdough or clay and plastic craters/rocks.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Let students create their own Moon surface models.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Use flashlights to simulate sunlight and create shadows, showing how craters and rocks cast shadows.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4. Explanation:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Gather students and have them share their models.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Discuss how the shadows helped them see the craters and rocks more clearly.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Explain how scientists study the Moon’s surface using similar techniques.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      5. Elaboration:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Introduce a simple experiment: Drop small objects into a tray of flour to create craters.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Observe the shapes and sizes of craters formed.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      6. Evaluation:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Ask students to draw their Moon models and label the features.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Have a brief sharing session where students explain their drawings and what they learned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Conclusion:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Reinforce the key points: the Moon has craters and rocks, and scientists use light and shadow to study its surface. Encourage curiosity and further questions about space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Suzy Furlong.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210108
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The 6-E inquiry steps you have used are very similar to the Curious Minds/ESERO Framework for Inquiry that has been developed in Ireland.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Key is the wondering and exploring before children use their science understanding to predict and investigate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I have done a similar activity and used masking tape rolls to be the craters and asked children: I wonder when the shadows of the craters will be easiest to see? I wonder where the Sun will be when the shadows are longest?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          For older children you could link this to the phase of the Moon and how 1st quarter Moon images have great shadows on the terminator.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #209913
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jennifer Dempsey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I’m Jennifer. I taught 1st class this year and have 1st class again next year in an all boys school. They love learning all about Space!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A fact I love about Space is that Jupiter has 95 moons, while we only have 1!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #209926
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Deirdre Tiernan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Inquiry Based Activities are magical when they can be instigated. While I have been successful at creating them in the past, the step by step approach that is available thanks to ESERO is very useful. As an infant teacher, we choose a monthly theme. The themes include Space, Under the Sea and In the Garden. I will use this approach to drive the theme. With effective stimuli’s children usually seize control of their learning and start to research topics at home, write about it in their free writing copy and play imaginatively during Small World and Dramatic Play. I will provide further information, vocabulary, praise and enthusiasm to help the children continue on their learning trajectory. Children love to present their knowledge. I find in particular, they enjoy creating a project or piece of writing and showing it to their peers or other teachers. It is important that the children’s enthusiasm and work is validated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209928
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Deirdre Tiernan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi my name is Deirdre Tiernan and I teach Senior Infants. I find it fascinating to learn about how the world began with the big bang and how it is still evolving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #209940
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Jennifer Dempsey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                One inquiry based lesson I’ve previously carried out with second class and they loved was the following. I think I’ll try it in 1st class this year too but just support them a little more where needed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                More information and resources can be found here:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                https://www.sfi.ie/resources/Our-Solar-System.pdf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I printed this during Space Week one year and use it each year depending on class level.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Prompt: Show pictures of the planets in our solar system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Ask the students what sizes they think the other Planets are compared with Earth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Ask if they know what the biggest and smallest planets are.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Describe and compare the various sizes of the planets from pictures used.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Activity: I would carry out this in groups of 4 or 5.  • Show the students all of the fruits available and ask for guesses as to which ones represent which planets, ask for reasoning when they give guesses. • Place all the fruits on a table. Have labels with names of planets but don’t match the fruits to the labels, have the students figure out where each should go, using the hint card that you can print off from the activity framework.  • Go around to the various groups and listen to their discussions and reasoning as to which fruits correspond to which planets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Finally: Discuss the correct sizes as a class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210653
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Glad to see that you find this resource useful – there is also an Irish language version. You can find both and others at spaceweek.ie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The key for me is listening to the children’s discussion and justifications as to which fruit is which planet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There is also an option of Earth and Moon with objects. Have a range of objects of different sizes and ask the children to choose one object each. Then they have to find another person with a different size object to make an Earth-Moon pair. The Moon is roughly 1/4 to 1/3 the size of the Earth, so there may be many pairs. Plus, someone may be somebody else’s Moon and a different person’s Earth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #209979
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Patrick Carroll
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Inquiry based learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Investigating how different surface materials effects the speed of a toy vehicle/object travelling down a ramp
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Resources – 2 marbles, ramps of a given length, set up to have an equal slope covered with various materials (left over lengths of laminate flooring are great) covered with different materials – (heavy duty plastic, different types of carpet, sand paper, lino, no cover, astroturf etc..)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Introduction –  Hold the 2 marbles at the top of one of the ramps and ask the children what will happen when they are let go? Question Why do they think this. Let the marbles go and observe them rolling down the ramp. Do they roll at the same speed?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Investigation – Place a second ramp with a different surface beside the original ramp, hold one marble on the original ramp and one of the second ramp – ask the students what they think will happen when the marbles are let go, will they roll at the same speed, can they justify their answer, let the marbles go observe the results and discuss, repeat this for all surfaces until the fastest/slowest surface is found.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Discussion and conclusion – Discuss the results in groups, why do you think that the marble rolled faster/slower over different materials, introduce the word friction and what it is, can you think of any everyday applications of friction and how it helps us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Follow up- would the changing the angle of the ramp change the speed

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #209986
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Donna Mcevoy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, I’m Donna and I will be teaching Junior Infants in September. One of the facts about space which I like is the fact that I used to teach the children that there were 9 planets but we now know that Pluto is a dwarf planet. It is amazing that we are still learning so much about space and I think its that curiosity about the unknown that has so many of us intrigued.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Donna Mcevoy.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #209990
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Christine O’Brien
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi everyone,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My name is Christine and I currently teach Senior Infants. We cover the theme of Space as our Integrated Learning through Play topic each year so this course is going to be immensely helpful. I am also looking forward to discovering how it can support the new Primary Maths Curriculum. One of my favourite space facts is that the sunset on Mars appears blue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Another play theme that we cover in class is Polar Exploration. I would use the ESERO’s Animals in the Cold (#7) lesson plan to build an ‘inquiry-based activity’. Using the Curious Minds framework, the structure would look as follows:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Engage
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Prompt:Do they know any films/cartoons about the North or South Pole?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wondering: What do the children know about these places on Earth?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Exploring: The children find out how animals that live in cold places keep themselves warm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Investigate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Starter Question: What do people do when they feel cold? How do the penguin and the polar bear keep themselves warm?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Predicting: Explain that the penguin’s feathers and the polar bear’s fur are also covered in a layer of grease. Predict what happens because of this.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Conducting the Investigation: Rub Vaseline on one of each child’s hands. Now the children also have a greasy layer on their skin. Drip some water on this hand. What happens to the water?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Take the Next Step
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Applying learning: Come to the conclusion that the water rolls off the hand with the greasy layer.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Making connections: Come to the conclusion that the penguin and the polar bear have three ways to keep themselves warm: a thick coat of fur or feathers, a thick layer of fat under their skin, and a greasy layer on their fur or feathers.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thoughtful actions: The animals have adapted to the conditions that they live in

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210143
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Christine,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            with your familiarity with the Curious Minds/ESER Framework it is great to see how you would use it in the classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This type of activity where there is a “catchy” demo (putting the Vaseline on children’s hands) can also be structured to support deeper science understanding by having the demo as part of the wonder/explore or even as the prompt itself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Then the children might wonder  – ‘does more Vaseline make me more waterproof?’ and make their prediction about that aspect of the activity and then try it out to see if they were right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Another child might wonder ‘I think that as long as there is some Vaseline you’ll be waterproof and it doesn’t matter how much’ and investigate that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #211571
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sharon Coyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Great lesson for teaching about the north and south pole.I will use this lesson in my teaching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #209996
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Donna Mcevoy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Doing this module reminded me of alot of inquiry science which I learned about in my teaching practice and taught while aboard. I love the idea of contextualising the problem and giving a hook into a lesson.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Strand is materials/materials and characteristics: Infants objective: describe and compare materials, noting the differences in the colour, shape and texture

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hook: Which is the odd one out (have the 3 little pigs houses). As long as children can justify, explain and reason they are correct.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Scenario: Which material will be the best to keep the wind out of the 3 little pigs house.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Prediction: Children to discuss their predictions and teacher to ask insightful open ended questions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Materials: matchsticks, straws (plastic/paper if possible), marshmallows, elastic bands, cardboard, lollipop sticks, bluetac, lego, squeezy bottle or fan for wind

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Activity: Children chose from different materials….to make a house for the 3 little pigs. They can move around 5 tables to create.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Children to then see which is the strongest. Teacher to bring a fan in. *disucss height/size too

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Results: Which houses were the strongest. Discuss the material but also the height and size of it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Further adaptions: Build the strongest tower.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #210163
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Donna.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  you’ve captured it exactly:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  As long as children can justify, explain and reason they are correct.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You don’t have to check their science is “correct” – the activity and investigation framework will do that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  With the marshmallows  and matchsticks would you be building structures like Amazing Triangles?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210523
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Donna Mcevoy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It could be like the triangles. I have done various lessons on this and offered mini and large marshmallows also to encourage creativity!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210993
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Aine Gannon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love the hook of the lesson The Three Little Pigs. It is so helpful to have a thematic unit and a story for stimulus for science/art etc. I know infants would love this! Thank you for the fantastic ideas.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Áine

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210041
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sinead Shanley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      An Inquiry Based Lesson for My Classroom. ‘ A Safer landing’ How can I change the speed of a rolling object as it falls towards the ground? Inspiration- Marble runs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Strand: Energy and Forces

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Strand Unit: Forces

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Curriculum Objective: investigate how forces act on objects through experimenting with different materials

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Skills Development:Questioning, Investigating, Experimenting

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Trigger: Oops a lego ball drops to the ground and smashes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Wonder: I wonder could we help the ball to get to the ground a safer way using some of our junk materials. (toilet roll tubes, masking tape, egg cartons, cardboard.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Explore the materials and discuss ideas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Starter question: Can we build a some ramps and tunnels to help the ball travel to the ground in a slower safer manner using our materials along a wall.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Predictions: Children state and record ideas and their reasoning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Conducting the investigation by constructing ramps/runs for the lego ball to fall safely to the ground without breaking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Share and interpret the results. What worked best?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Applying our learning and making connections to build class marble runs in Aistear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210137
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      colette browne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Module 1: Space Exploration
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – Reflective Learning: I am fascinated by the advancements in space exploration and how they spark curiosity and innovation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Module 2: Planets and Moons
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – Reflective Learning: Learning about the different planets and moons in our solar system provides a sense of awe and wonder about the vastness of space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Module 3: Stars and Galaxies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – Reflective Learning: Exploring stars and galaxies opens up a whole new perspective on the universe and our place within it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Module 4: Black Holes and Dark Matter
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – Reflective Learning: The mysteries of black holes and dark matter challenge our understanding of the universe and push the boundaries of scientific exploration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi everyone! I’m here to share my favorite space fact: Did you know that the light from the Sun takes about 8 minutes to reach Earth? It’s amazing how something so fundamental to our lives is still so mind-boggling!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Reflection: To incorporate an inquiry-based activity in my classroom, I would create a simulation where students are tasked with planning a space mission to a distant planet. They would need to research the planet’s characteristics, design a spacecraft, and consider the challenges they might face during the journey. This activity not only fosters critical thinking and problem-solving skills but also ignites a sense of exploration and discovery among students.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I look forward to engaging with all of you in this forum!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210179
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Colette,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When we bring inquiry into the classroom we are aiming to increase the children’s science content understanding through acting as scientists by investigation activities. Given the Design and Make skills in the Irish curriculum, the “Investigate” tier of the Framework for Inquiry can be modified to be Explore>Plan>Make>Evaluate. You can see examples of this design and make version on spaceweek.ie – for example Humans in Space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Researching a planet’s characteristic is something that older children might do independently (it’s often set as an activity in second level schools), but for Junior Classes the teacher would have to provide a range of books or videos to help the children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This ESA resource could be used to support children in designing a Mars mission – but note that it is designed for ages 8 – 12.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210160
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rachael Gill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Rachael and I currently teach Junior Infants. My favorite space fact is that nobody actually knows how many stars are in space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210204
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Rachael Gill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              An Inquiry-based lesson for my Infant class:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Strand: Energy and Forces

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Strand Unit: Forces

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Curriculum Objective: investigate how forces act on objects through grouping objects that float or sink

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Skills Development:Questioning, Investigating, Experimenting

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Engage:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Trigger- Read aloud: Who sank the boat? Pamela Allen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Wondering- Q+A: I wonder why the boat sank….

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Exploring- Discussion about boats and what they can be made from.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Investigate:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Starter Question- Which materials are best for making a boat?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Predicting- The children could discuss and record their predictions through drawing pictures of the materials presented to them

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Conducting investigation- the children could test their predictions in groups using basins of water and placing the materials in the water to see if they float or sink in water

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sharing and Interpreting results- the children could share their results through pictograms. The teacher would record an overall pictogram on the board to identify the best material to make a boat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Applying learning:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Design and make a boat in aistear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210252
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Gwen Williams
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Module 1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My inquiry based activity would be – Where would an alien like to live ?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I taught a similar lesson before and this module helped me to reflect on this and how I could broaden the lesson and make it more inquiry based.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I had a little alien sensory teddy filled with flour.  I integrated this with literacy and art.  We read a story about different types of aliens and predicted where they might like to live based on their different characteristics. In art the children drew and painted their own aliens and using a variety of construction materials they designed spaceships and alien homes for their aliens.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I think talk and discussion plays a pivotal role in inquiry based learning.  With everyone adapting and changing their opinions as we learn from each and gain more information.   I think this would lead to exploration of the habitats, climates and living conditions of different planets.  There is plenty of scope for the development of SPHE themes about feeling different/the same, celebrating uniqueness and developing inclusivity.  I work in a Junior school so I think this would be a good starting point for some simple project work. The children could be put into teams and given a planet each to research.  They could make a pros and cons list for each planet before conducting a graph or chart about where the aliens might like to live – this would link nicely with the strand of Data in Maths.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Using themes and topics like this makes learning fun for everyone and sparks curiosity in the children.  It is a great motivational tool.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210306
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dean Vaughan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love the idea of discussing where an alien might live based on their characteristics and features and experimenting with this – will be trying this in the next year

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #211567
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sharon Coyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Great lesson for sinking and floating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210271
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Roisin McLarnon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Teaching senior infants involves a lot of learning through themed play activities.One of the themes is camping and this opens up a lot of opportunity for inquiry based learning .Introducing the idea of preparing for a camping trip I read the story Herman’s holiday . Discussion on what we need for camping follows. We discuss the weather ,clothing and tents etc. The children will look at different fabrics and materials and describe them. Questions asked …….Which material would keep you warm ? dry ? cool ? The children will predict and the test the materials in simple experiements to get results . Results are recorded in a child friendly way .Finally the children could be asked to make a waterproof tent for their teddy bear and test it to see if it works .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      This activity is fun and it is child based learning and developing and inquisitive mind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210276
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Alyson O Rourke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Mindmap about Space: Prior to teaching Space I would create a mind map of key words. These key words would be the focus of my lessons and would also be the vocab I would want the children to know come the end of the series of lessons on Space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Key words
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Planets, Solar System, Moon,Sun,Stars, Galaxy, Gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        All of these could be chosen as a focus for a lesson and built upon in follow up lessons. Space is a very broad area and it is often only brief touched upon in lessons in workbooks. A great idea prior to teaching Space would to gather what the children already know. A ‘KWL’ chart would be an effective tool to use here. Children may be more interested in the planets or could be fascinated by the First Moon Landing. A teacher can then choose where to focus the lessons so the children’s interests are built upon. Getting the children to do their own mindmap could be an effective idea also. In junior classes, the children could draw what they know about Space and the teacher could discuss their drawings with them

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210302
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Dean Vaughan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi, my name is Dean and I teach junior infants.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My favourite space fact is that you can fit a million earths inside the sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My inquiry based task is the absorption science experiment:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Spills Happen!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          What you’ll need:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Shallow tray or baking sheet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Water
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Dropper or spoon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Paper towels
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Paper sheets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sponges
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Fabric scraps (like old towels or cloths)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Markers (optional)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Plan: Talk about spills! Where do you see spills happen? (kitchen, bathroom) What kind of things can spill? (water, juice)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Predict: Ask the children, “What do you think would be the best material to soak up a spill?” Let them guess and explain their ideas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Test: Pour a small amount of water onto the tray. Now, it’s time to put those predictions to the test! Touch each material (paper towel, sponge, etc.) to the water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Observe: See which material absorbs the most water. Does the water spread or form a bead? You can use markers to color the water and see how it spreads in each material (optional).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Record: Help the children draw pictures or write down what they observed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Discuss: After testing all the materials, talk about the results. Which material absorbed the most water? Why do some materials work better than others?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Let’s go further!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Try different types of paper towels or fabrics.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          See if thickness affects how much water is absorbed by using multiple layers of the same material.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Time how long it takes for each material to absorb the water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Dean Vaughan.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210339
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sharon Coyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Sharon Coyne. I will be teaching Senior Infants in September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My favourite space facts are astronauts living in space and gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210406
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chloe Buckley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My name is Chloe and I will be teaching senior infants in September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My favourite space fact is that it would take 9 years to walk the moon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Mind map: galaxy, stars, planets, orbit, moon, solar system, sun, satellites,  exploration, gases, cool, heat, gravity, rings, fast, slow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Experiment:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Which Paper absorbs best:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Questioning:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You are going to be investigating –
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What do you want to find out? (which paper absorbs the best)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What will you change? (the paper)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What will you keep the same? (size of piece of paper, amount of water, time)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Materials absorb water through capillary action. This means that water is attracted to the surface of the fibres and is drawn up into the spaces between them. The coarser the fibres the more easily the material absorbs water because there are more air spaces for the water to go into.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Give the children 3 different kinds of paper and ask them to investigate scientifically which is the most absorbent. Show them what equipment is available to do it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Encourage the children to think of various ways in which this could be done with the available equipment. They need to design and make a support for their fair test. Then they need to see which paper absorbs the best.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hang the three pieces of paper from the ‘crossbar’ or the string using blu-tack or plasticine. Put water into the butter carton (and a few drops of food colouring, which helps to show up the water) and hang the three pieces of paper so that they are just dipping into the water. Watch what happens.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Display against the light for the best effect

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Reflection and observation:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What do you see?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What does this tell you about absorbing?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #210830
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Anita Cooke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Chloe,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I really like your inquiry based activity. It’s hands on and lots of fun. The children would absolutely love the use of food colouring. It’s a very effective and fun way to show how the water is soaked up by the materials. This is open to lots of discussion before and after the lesson, predicting which would be the best/ worst material to use. What materials do we use at home/school for drying?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #211158
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Chloe,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I’m afraid my brain gets tangled when I try to figure out how water wicks up a cloth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It it is good at absorbing, it will soak up all the water in just a bit of the material and the line will be really small. (microfibre cloth or sponge)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It is not as good as absorbing, the water will go further up the material, since each bit of material can’t hold as much, so it keeps wicking up. (tissue or cheap paper towel).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If it is really bad at absorbing, none of the water will be taken up the material (plastic bag)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    So the children will have to carefully work out what they expect to see for different absorbancy materials.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210463
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  kevin kennedy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, My name is Kevin . I currently teach First Class and lot’s of the kids in the class have a huge interest in STEM, doing experiments  and space so this course was of interest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My favourite space fact is: ONE MILLION EARTHS CAN FIT INSIDE THE SUN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The inquiry based activity that I have chosen to discuss today is the fingerprint experiment. I feel this experiment would create great excitement and interest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I would begin with the trigger: A Youtube video showing a thief leaving his fingerprints on a window.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wondering: Asking the children what a fingerprint is? What mistake did the thief make? How can the guards use this information from the print ? What if the print is not on file? How can they solve the crime ?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Starter question: How could the guards get the print from the window?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Predicting: Record answers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Conducting the experiment: Secret thief .. I would pick a child to leave his/her fingerprints on the classroom window without the other kid’s knowledge of who it is. All the children would print their fingerprints on sheets and then try to investigate the prints and  find the thief.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Interpreting results: Look at the results and interpret the data (fingerprints on the board before matching the fingerprints to the thiefs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Extension: Free Writing : The thieves fingerprints

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Teacher reflection with children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210474
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Kevin,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        the fingerprint activity can be a great starting point for inquiry learning. I think the important part is the questions that the children pose themselves as they are carrying out the activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They might ask – which powder makes it easier to see the fingerprint? Do we need to have a lot or a little of it? How are fingerprints the same or different?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        In each case, they should use their own understanding to make a testable question – and this might be quite informal as they quickly say – ‘I think it needs to be a just enough to cover the fingerprint – let me try that.’

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211564
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Donna Mcevoy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I also really love the idea of a unit/activities around the who done it theme. It would be really engaging to stage a robbery of some sort in the school with a notes and a pen left behind. It could be as simple as sorry. I just really needed some chocolate in my class today! That could leave it open to a lot of teachers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This is something which I have done previously and it looks at fingerprints (can use powder) to examine the patterns, look at footprint and examine the patterns…have other footprints to compare, examine the writing and look at the handwriting in detail to see which one matches the note, check the ph level (acidi) in the clay off the footprint, use chromatology to see which colours come from the pen and finally could be a maths activity to break a code which could help. Other elements which could be used: leave a mark on a glass (lip stick) and examine clothing fibres!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210470
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Daire Dwyer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hello, my name is Daire and I have always been fascinated by the topic of space and I find children have so many questions with regards to this topic in a way that I havn’t experienced with other ones, my favourite space fact is the there are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on Earth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210483
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Daire Dwyer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Teaching an inquiry-based activity on space and the planets in the solar system can be a fun and engaging way for students to learn. Here’s how I would teach it in my classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Introduction: Introduce the concept of space and the solar system to students. Explain that there is an order to the planets in relation to which one is nearest the sun. Use rhymes and songs to help remember the order.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ask Questions: Encourage students to ask questions about the planets. What do they already know? What do they want to learn more about?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Research: Have students research more about the solar system. They can explore how many planets there are and what is the order of the planets, which one is nearest to the sun, which comes next and so on

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Activity based approach to consolidating the information, I would prepare large cut outs of the planets and laminate them, I would get the pupils to work in groups and construct a large diagram of the solar system in the hall or outside using the cut outs and chalk/string to represent orbits and help keep the planets in order (this also helps with the spacing of the cut outs).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Discussion: Facilitate a group discussion where students can share their findings, ask questions, and reflect on what they’ve learned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Consolidation: pupils  can create models, posters or drawings  to demonstrate their knowledge of the solar system

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Conclude the activity by summarizing key points about the solar system and the sequence of planets. Encourage students to continue exploring and asking questions about the solar system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My goal in this activity is to encourage curiosity, critical thinking, and active learning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210495
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Daire,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                if the introduction has

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Explain that there is an order to the planets in relation to which one is nearest the sun. Use rhymes and songs to help remember the order.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                what additional research will the children do about this?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Research: Have students research more about the solar system. They can explore how many planets there are and what is the order of the planets, which one is nearest to the sun, which comes next and so on

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Inquiry learning is more than asking questions – using the framework for inquiry that is outlined in this module, children can pose their own questions that reference their science understanding and have investigative activities to check their understanding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                So, for planets, children might expect that the planets that are nearer the Sun (as established in the intro) would be warmer than planets further away from the Sun. Books/videos or charts with that information could be shared and children could check if they are correct. If not (and it is a not), then they might ask why a planet that is closer to the Sun – Mercury – isn’t as hot as the next planet – Venus. This could then lead to a practical query on how Venus’s atmosphere acts like a blanket to keep it warm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210518
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anita Cooke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My name is Anita. I work in SET in a Junior school.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My favourite Space fact is that Stars come in different colours depending on their temperature. Cooler stars appear red while hotter stars look blue or white!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Anita Cooke.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210892
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lynn McElroy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My name is Lynn and I teach 1st/2nd class. Saturn’s rings are 90% water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210899
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Lynn McElroy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My name is Lynn and I teach 1st/2nd class. Saturn’s rings are 90% water.firstly take

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      a soda bottle and mix water, dish soap, food coloring and white vinegar. Then, make baking soda slurry and add slowly to this solution. Let the children watch the volcano erupt and understand the coAn inquiry lesson I have completed is making a volcano erupt in a bottle. The children work together to make predictions in groups. You take a bottle and mix water, soap, food colouring and vinegar. Then add baking soda and add it slowly into the bottle. The children they watch the volcano erupt and see the process of eruption.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Children can consolidate their learning by asking and posing questions to other groups in the classroom. They can then write up their findings and check if their predictions were correct.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ncept of eruption properly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210901
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Lynn McElroy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        An inquiry lesson I have completed is making a volcano erupt in a bottle. The children work together to make predictions in groups. You take a bottle and mix water, soap, food colouring and vinegar. Then add baking soda and add it slowly into the bottle. The children they watch the volcano erupt and see the process of eruption.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Children can consolidate their learning by asking and posing questions to other groups in the classroom. They can then write up their findings and check if their predictions were correct. The now understand the concept of eruption properly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211144
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Lynn,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the checking if their predictions were correct is how children consolidate their own knowledge.  With this type of activity I find it best to offer a demonstration of the procedure first, then they have some background to the science and can pose a further question that they can then check.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213195
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Emma O Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I remember doing this experiment on teaching practice maybe 15 years ago. The smell of vinegar lingering in the class for the week after. They loved it, pure excitement

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210526
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Lucy O Mahony
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Lucy and I teach in an Early Intevention class.  The children are aged 3 to 5 and most are non verbal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Everything I use has to be very simple. The topic I’d choose is materials and investigate water absorption.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Trigger: 50 ml water spilled on the table.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Have 4 different materials ready i.e. kitchen roll, a newspaper, a small sheet of plastic and a magazine. Each time spill 50 ml of water and use one of the materials to soak up the water. Take a photo of the table each time. After each child should touch the materials and observe if it is wet or not.  Sort into 2 categories i.e. wet or dry.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Photographs could be ordered from the one which has the most water left on the table to the one with the least or vice versa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This could extended with coats made of different materials. Pour water on 3/4 coats and identify the one which is best to keep out the rain ( waterproof )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210948
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Louise Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                This is just great to read. We have recently opened up our autism class and this is such an engaging task. The spilling of water, pressing various materials to figure out if the material is absorbent or waterproof. Well done! And then ‘ordering’ photos for sorting and classifying afterwards is super and extends the opportunity for teachers to keep using the vocab and engaging the students.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210556
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Orla Glynn
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hello all,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My name is Orla and I teach in a large primary school in Dublin. Next year I will be teaching second class. An interesting space fact is 564 people have been into space – of that number 65 of them were women.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                From September onwards I plan to use an inquiry-based activity about gravity and falling things in the classroom. I will engage in this activity when I am completing the ‘Energy and Forces’ unit of work. The students will investigate how forces act on objects. We will speak about push and pull forces. We will complete some examples (using objects such as a toy car) in small groups before showing our investigations to the whole class. We will then explore the effects of gravity using the ESERO resources as a guide. I will then provide different objects for the children to name and explore the effect of gravity on. To investigate we will devise our starter question and predictions. We will choose somewhere safe from which to drop our objects at the same time. We will measure the height of the drop, so it’s the same each time. We will observe and record our results and what we see. We will repeat the drop three times, recording our results. After conducting the investigation in small groups we will analyse and interpret our results, before writing our conclusions.. Perhaps as a follow on we could complete the egg parachute experiment depending on the ability of the class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210609
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Orla,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    welcome to this course. There are lots of posts in the forum with suggestions, resources and ideas from other teachers, including other 2nd class teachers, so I hope you find this useful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Gravity and falling things is fun to explore, if you find that when you drop ordinary things they fall too fast to compare you could try rolling them down a ramp – it will be a bit slower – although friction/rolling will then come into play.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    This is how Galileo explored gravity back in the 1600s! See this teacher article on his thinking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210638
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Louise O Grady
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi my name is Louise. I will be teaching 1st class in September after having senior infants the past 3 years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My favourite space fact is that one day on Venus is longer than one year on Venus. Venus has extremely low rotation on its axis so it takes about 243 Earth days to complete one rotation, while it takes only about 225 Earth days to complete one orbit around the Sun. Weird but cool!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #210650
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Elaine Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi my name is Elaine and this year I’m teaching first and second class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I decided on this course as I myself have a huge personal interest in space, be it the planets (Pluto is also still a planet in my eyes), solar eclipses, lunar eclipses or meteorite showers and I’d love to pass along my interest in it  my class. I’m really looking forward to this course.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210669
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Elaine Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My favourite fact about space is that one million Earths could fit inside the Sun yet  the Sun is considered an average-size star.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #210739
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Naomi Marica
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My name is Naomi & I’ll be teaching Junior Infants this year. It’s my third time teaching Junior Infants and one theme I always do that my students love is Space. My favourite fact about Space is that because the Universe is always expanding, there are stars in the sky that we will never be able to see. I love stargazing and to think that of all the abundance of stars the sky will provide, there will always be stars the naked eye has never seen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210778
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Naomi Marica
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Inquiry-based activity:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gravity & Mass

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            One really easy lesson that I’ve always done and got the children so engaged and curious was on the topic of gravity and mass.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Firstly I did a KWL chart and asked the children what they know about gravity. Then I would teach some vocab and show a video on gravity. Based on the video and what the children already know I would ask them what they would like to know about gravity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I would then go onto doing 2 small experiments.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            One is dropping an empty bottle and a full bottle of water on the floor – which would would hit the floor first. We would discuss and tally on the board which one would fall first and why.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            After the experiment is done I would ask why they think the one that fell first fell, and why? After discussion I would tell them the answer and the science behind it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The second experiment is dropping a flat piece of paper and a crumbled up piece of paper at the same time – which would fall first? The same process of prediction, recording, discussion and explanation would occur.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            These experiments would be an introduction to gravity and after teaching lessons on gravity and how it works, the children would then use two different variables just as the experiments above and conduct an experiment in groups in front of the classroom. They would have to research and in conference with teacher discuss their experiment and its explanation. Then they would show it in front of the class with the same pattern as modelled by the teacher: stating the experiment- prediction – recording- experiment- discussion – explanation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Then as a conclusion to the theme of gravity we would as a class complete the L part of our KWL chart, or this can be done after each lesson while the info is fresh in the children’s minds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #211209
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Naomi,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                try to let the children tell you the science behind the experiments. In that way they are verifying that their understanding matches the real world.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In the case of the empty bottle and the full bottle hitting the ground, they both experience a force of gravity that is proportional to their mass – so the empty bottle has a smaller pull of gravity, but because it is lighter, it needs less to fall at the same rate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The full bottle has a bigger mass, so a larger pull of gravity on it, but it needs that larger pull to get it to the same acceleration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A slight difference may occur with the slowing force of the air on them – if they are the same size bottle then that force will be the same, and for the less full bottle that will affect it more.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Much more straightforward to start the exploration with two objects that are the same mass and have different shapes – in this case the air resistance force makes the biggest difference to how they fall.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #210817
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anita Cooke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Inquiry based activity
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                How do animals keep themselves warm?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Brainstorm all the different types of weather-sunny, rain, cloudy, windy and snow.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Explain that some places get lots of rain and other are very dry. Some places are very hot and some places are very cold. At the North and South Pole it is very cold. Can they think of any movies set these regions? What animals live in these areas?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Trigger: Read the story The Snowman by Raymond Briggs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Question: Ask the children how do animals keep themselves warm?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Then show them a picture of a Polar bear and a penguin. Ask them what animals they are and where they live/ hot or cold climate?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                List all the ideas children give on how animals keep themselves warm.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Explain that Polar bears and penguins have a really thick layer of fat under their skin to keep themselves warm. They live in such a cold climate that they need more than the layer of fat under their skin.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Question: What do we do to keep ourselves warm when going outside? We put on an extra jumper or coat….
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Penguins and bears don’t have a coats but they have extra thick feathers and fur that act as a coat for them. Penguins and Bears also have a thick layer of grease on tip of their fur and feathers to protect them from the cold water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Children will rub Vaseline on their hands and then put them in water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What happens? They will see the water run off their hands. The layer of grease repels the water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Conclusion: The polar bear and penguins have 3 ways of staying warm in cold climate- extra layer of fat, extra thick fur/feathers and a layer of grease. They adapt to the climate they are living in.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210903
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lynn McElroy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think this is an interesting experiment as it teaches the children to learn and find their answers through exploration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #211160
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Anita,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      this could easily be extended by asking the children what they think would happen if they put on an extra coat? If they have their own coat on in the classroom – how warm do they feel? What if a child puts YOUR coat on over their coat?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I used to teach second level and I would bring in the reflective lining of my Canadian coat (good to -40) and one girl would wear it for a few minutes- she’d be so hot by the end of that!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211194
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sarah Harrington
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love this idea Anita. It really highlights the different climates around the world.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #210895
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Susan Lawlor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi There, my name is Susan and I teach in Dublin. My favorite space fact is that it takes nearly three days to travel to the moon. I have visited Kennedy Space Centre many times and touched moon rock each time. It is an amazing place.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love to do floating and sinking with infant classes. I use different materials – an orange (both peeled and unpeeled), play doh in a ball and shaped as a thumb pot, a stone, a tick, a pen, a pencil, a bottle, other items from around the class. Infants love water play and it leads very naturally to the ideas of waterproof items and waterproof clothing. At infant level, I start by telling the class that I can do magic. When we finish the lesson I remind them that I said I could do magic and now so can they. A magician is just a scientist.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210918
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Scientists as magicians is a great idea.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The orange naturally lends itself to the magic — it floats with the peel on, but when you make it lighter (by taking the peel off) it sinks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This is so counterintuitive to a child who thinks something floats because of mass (rather than heavy for its size = density).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210944
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Louise Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi I work in a Junior School. Love the junior school aged children and science. Their natural curiosity lends itself so perfectly to investigation, questions and some great and funny answers!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            In the past we have used Chris Hadfield and his posts about life in space as a great ‘real life’ as a concrete example of how gravity makes life in space and on earth so different! How gravity helps us on earth, but also how fun zero gravity would be. The children loved this and enjoyed finding comparisons and coming up with their own ideas of inventions to supports them if they were on the space craft with Chris!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210958
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Louise Gleeson
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Gravity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Standing on tables dropping various things, discuss weight plays a role on how fast things fall, but ultimately everything falls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              How does gravity affect our daily life. How have we designed the world to help us navigate gravity?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              How can we slow things down from falling? How have humans designed things to help us beat gravity whether for fun or for safety? Talk about things that don’t fall out of control  …gliders, hot air balloons, stairs, escalators, elevators etc..  all the things that help us go up and down at our own pace.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Making parachutes. Talk about materials needed watch some videos. Create our designs. Have a ‘we (kinda) beat gravity day!!!’ dropping various things and enjoying science.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211145
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Louise,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  be careful in the discussion around

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  discuss weight plays a role on how fast things fall, but ultimately everything falls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  since the role of air resistance is tied up with this. Aristotle thought that the heavier an object was, the faster it would fall. This isn’t true, and Galileo found that out by doing experiments on objects going down ramps (the ramps meant that the objects went slow enough that he could measure their speed).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  If there is no air, then all objects fall at the same speed. You can see this at this video from Brian Cox, or from the video of the astronauts on the Moon where there is no air.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #211908
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dympna Kilcoyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love this idea for a gravity investigation; I will be teaching the same children next year into Senior Infants and I know they would love this!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210977
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Deirdre Leonard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    e Hi everyone. My name is Deirdre and I jobshare in 1st and 2nd class and will be doing that for the 3rd year this year. I love how inquisitive children are and how they can up with solutions to scientific experiments. We had loads of fun this year using Lets’ discover and there was plenty of opportunities for experimentation.is

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211043
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Deirdre Leonard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My favourite space fact is that the Sunset on Mars appears blue. My class loved when we discovered that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211146
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Deirdre, do you know this song?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • This reply was modified 1 week, 3 days ago by Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy. Reason: link to correct song
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211368
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Bridget O Grady
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I didn’t know that about sunsets on Mars,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #210988
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Aine Gannon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi, I’m Áine. I have taught Junior Infants for the last two years and will be teaching lovely 1st class next year. My Junior Infants loved learning about Space. It’s one topic that always captured their imagination and I am always amazed at their knowledge and space related facts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My favourite space fact is that one million Earths could fit inside the Sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #210995
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            CLAIRE DEMPSEY
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi all,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My name is Claire Dempsey, I have been mainly teaching in the Senior Classes but am moving to Junior Infants in September so a big change awaits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My favourite fact about Space is that Jupiter is heavier than all the other planets put together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Reflection/Inquiry based activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Using toys to explore the forces of pushing and pulling

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sorting into sets a variety of toys into different groups. Which ones require a push or pull to make it move?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Questioning the children on any other ways they could make the toys move. E.g. Blowing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Are there ways to make the toys go faster or slower?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Which toys move fastest and are easiest to push?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Which toys need a big push to move them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Which toys need a small push to move them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Using our chairs and tables in the classroom to explore the forces of push and pull.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Talking about practical ways that we use the different forces of pushing and pulling – Opening doors/Windows etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211142
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Claire,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  welcome to this course and the world of Junior Infants! I think you will find the ideas and suggestions in the forum very useful – there are about 60 teachers so far in this course, so lots of sharing going on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Your playful forces activity is spot on for the engage and wondering aspects of inquiry. Teacher modelling “I wonder…” can help the children find a question that they can answer with their toys.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  They might think that lighter objects are easier to move (from throwing objects around) so may think that lighter objects will fall or roll down a ramp more easily — and so exploring that will let them develop their understanding of forces acting on heavier or lighter objects.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #211543
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Margaret Lane
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Claire, I love this experiment. I’m going into senior infants next September so will definitely look forward to doing this experiment. Children can explore a variety of everyday objects that engage their curiosity and allows them to be inquisitive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #210996
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Aine Gannon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Inquiry unit for an infant class that I really enjoyed teaching this year was investigating materials. We used the story of Paddington for stimulus and to engage the children’s interest.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Problem to solve: Paddington is going on a long journey to England. It is very rainy in England (in Ireland too) , how can we help Paddington keep his fur dry?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Introduction: we brainstormed the clothing that Paddington could wear. We spoke about and introduced the term  ‘waterproof’.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Development: We tested to see if our coats and jackets were waterproof. We looked for the waterproof symbol on some clothing. We explored the materials that were best for keeping water/ rain out. Had we any materials in the classroom that would be good? Which materials should Paddington not wear if he wants to stay dry?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For art, we designed and made a coat for Paddington or a bear of choice.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Going further: Children brought in two items from home and we tested to see if they were waterproof.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211045
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Deirdre Leonard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love the idea of this lesson as I am drawn in by Paddington myself. My own 1st and 2nd class loved experimenting with materials to see which would be waterproof too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211161
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Áine, I love how you started with their own clothing and looked for the waterproof symbol. They might also tell you that despite their coat saying it is waterproof, they still get wet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I’m endlessly hunting for a good jacket.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          You might include some maths with this by using Investigating Children’s Coats and in Irish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211219
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Louise Brosnan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Aine,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I haven’t thought infants in a number of years and using Paddington sounds like a great way to get them interested in experimenting with materials!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211049
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Deirdre Leonard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I think after doing this module that I will work harder on making my science lessons inquiry based where they can be. I followed a certain programme during the year which was great for giving me ideas and I will certainly try even harder next year to use the inquisitive minds of the children and work from what they know. In the last month we did the experiment where we spilled the water and they were very quick to tell me that the water spillage had to be the same each time we were testing a new material to keep the test fair. We also did a theme on bridges which was integrated with Art and they had to design bridges that would be strong enough to withhold different toys. I can tell you that it took a lot longer than the time that I had intended it to but it was worth it to see the joy on their faces when they experienced success.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #211143
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Deirdre,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                You can look at inquiry activities as both ‘science questions’ and as ‘design and make’ activities that use their own science understanding to inform the design process. As you have noted, it may take much longer than you have anticipated, so you may need to plan for practical maths as part of the activity to give you another aspect of the busy curriculum in the time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like how you included arts in stem – this is the current thinking about STEM & Arts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #211116
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anne Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi . my name is Anne and I will be teaching in SET next year. I have just finished a year teaching in 4th class.  My favourite space fact is  ….. The gravity on the Moon is just one-sixth of the Earth’s, so you would weigh less on the Moon. You could jump higher and carry much heavier things too!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211217
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Louise Brosnan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My name is Louise, I am teaching in a special school for pupils with a mild general learning disability. I have been teaching LCA classes the last number of years but will be teaching Junior primary in September.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  One fascinating fact about space is that there are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth. Astronomers estimate that there are around 100 billion galaxies in the observable universe, each containing millions to billions of stars. This vast number highlights the incredible scale and complexity of the cosmos.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Incorporating inquiry based activities into the classroom significantly enhances students engagement and critical thinking skills. One effective inquiry based activity I plan to use is the Mystery Box Challenge.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This activity involves presenting students with a sealed box containing an unknown object. Students must ask yes-or-no questions to gather clues and eventually hypothesise the content of the box. This activity serves multiple educational purposes. Firstly, it stimulates curiosity and encourages active learning. Students are not merely passive recipients of information; instead, they actively participate in the learning process by formulating questions, predicting outcomes, and testing their hypotheses. This aligns with constructivist theories of learning, which emphasise the importance of students constructing their own understanding. Secondly, the Mystery Box activity fosters collaboration and communication skills. As students work together to solve the mystery, they must listen to each other’s questions and reasoning, promoting a collaborative learning environment. This peer interaction is crucial in developing social skills and learning from diverse perspectives. Lastly, this activity enhances critical thinking and problem-solving abilities. Students must use deductive reasoning to eliminate possibilities and make educated guesses. By engaging in this hands-on and minds-on activity, students learn to approach problems systematically and think critically about the information they gather.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #211231
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Louise,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      would you use the mystery boxes in the way that I have seen them presented – where you do NOT open them at all – they remain sealed for the whole year and the children can bring them out every now and then as they learn more. So, they can be brought out when you are doing magnets, so that they can see if anything inside reponds to magnetic force.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #211222
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Siobhan Rooney
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi there, My name is Siobhan and I teach in an all boys’ school. The pupils love all things space. My interesting fact is the Moon is 400 times smaller than the Sun and 400 times closer to Earth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Class: Stem Investigation: Moon Crater
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Introduction: I would start by introducing the children to the storybook Bring Down the Moon by Jonathan Emmett. This will help to spark a discussion with what we see in the sky at night. We will then discuss what we know about the moon and hat the surface of the moon looks like.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Stem investigation: We will recreate the moon surface by using white floor on a baking dish, and we will then drop objects into the flour bowl. This will recreate the moon surface. We will then drop a variety of bouncy ball, marbles onto the surface. We will discuss how this changes the moon surface as we drop the object. We will then use tweezer to remove the object without damaging the surface further.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We will then compare this to the surface of the moon by using real pictures of the moon surface. The children will then have an opportunity to draw their own moon surface and see how they are similar and different to the moon surface itself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #211237
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Siobhan,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          flour is a good surface for this, but needs to be disposed off afterwards (food source in the classroom). I tend to use different sands that I get from B&Q or other suppliers. The sand can be dried (so if you get sand, allow about a week for it to dry enough to use) so that it flows easily and makes simple craters. If you use wet sand the balls just drop and make a hole exactly the size of the ball!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This is lovely if you look at some of the craters that have clear ejecta  – like Tycho.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          https://science.nasa.gov/resource/tycho-crater-on-the-moon-labeled/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212187
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Siobhan Rooney
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks a million for that tip Frances. We have lots of sand in the school, so this would be ideal. I just would need to remember to dry it out first. Looking forward to seeing this in action in the next academic year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211419
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rachel Doyle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi, my name is Rachel. I will be teaching senior infants and my favourite space fact is that it is windy on Saturn.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #211428
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Rachel Doyle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              An inquiry-based activity that I would use in my classroom (and one that I remember doing in school myself) would be to show how gravity works by dropping eggs from a height. Eggs would be dropped onto different surfaces (the ground, grass, soft towel, etc). The pupils must guess if the egg will break when it hits all the surfaces or just some of the surfaces. To extend this lesson the pupils can create different methods of protecting the eggs to prevent them from breaking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211445
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rachel,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  this is very much about forces and materials – the egg is strong, but if it hits the edge of something it will break. Nice twist and addition to the dropping materials activity from the module.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211429
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rachel Doyle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love the idea of telling the children that you are a magician and then reminding them that they are one too. I will be using this in the future to spark their interest in lessons

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #211536
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Margaret Lane
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, My name is Margaret, I will be teaching senior infants in September. My favourite space fact is knowing that some stars we see are actually extinct. We are only receiving their light now as it takes millions of years for the light to travel and reach earth, therefore we are seeing the stars in the past.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    An enquiry- based activity- This year I ran an afterschool Science club with ‘Junior Einsteins’. The children loved doing the experiment the Fizzy Balloon experiment which looks at gases from a volcano and the effects it can have during an eruption of a volcano.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • a Funnel
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • drinks bottle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • vinegar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • balloon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • 3-5 tablespoons of baking soda at least
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • 1 cup of Vinegar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pour baking soda into a balloon. Pour vinegar into the bottle using the funnel. Remove the funnel. Quickly fit the balloon over the neck of the bottle. Lift the balloon up pouring the baking soda into the vinegar. Ask the children what they think will happen when you mix the baking soda and vinegar together. Make sure the children hold the balloon on the neck of the bottle and shake the soda down into the bottle, all at once. The balloon starts to blow up because of the pressure, or force, of the gas in the bottle. The more gas given out, the more the balloon fills.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211647
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Margaret,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I also love that fact about stars – and since stars last for billions of years, most of the nearby ones are still there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        With the volcano activity, asking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ask the children what they think will happen when you mix the baking soda and vinegar together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        will only build on their science if they have some background in mixing and chemical reactions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I’d be inclined to do the demonstration as an amazing prompt – and then ask the children how they think they could make the eruption bigger/ or quicker / or last longer… and let then apply their new understanding in a testable way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I did this with my Brownie Guides last year- and many of these 8-10 year old girls had seen a similar eruption, either in school or from a book/video. It meant we could have fun building on their ideas – so we made a paper volcanoes and looked at the difference the volcano shape made to the eruption.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211565
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sharon Coyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I will be teaching Senior infants in September and one of our aistear topics is now Space so I love teaching children about this topic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I will use the story of  frozen to start the lesson and as a stimulus to engage the class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Investigate materials- What is the quickest way to melt ice

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Problem to solve: Elsa has frozen all of Arendelle. Can Olaf survive in summer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Introduction

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The children will brainstorm what they know about ice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They will discuss the different between hot and cold things/ climates

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Development

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We will complete Magic Olaf melting ice cube experiments. The children will be asked to predict which Olaf ice cube will melt first. We will have the Olaf ice cubes in different situations 1. warm water 2. wrapped in different materials.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The children will watch and observe what melts first.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Photo story

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Children create photo stories of Olafs life in summer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212245
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Barbara Sadlier
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Sharon,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I really like this idea. It’s a fun and engaging way to introduce the topic. I will use this next year, thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212502
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Grace O’Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This is such a lovely idea for a lesson – i love that you have linked the lesson to Frozen. The children will have your attention immediately and the hands-on approach will ensure they stay engaged throughout the lesson. I will be trying this in the future!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #211660
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ashling Mccartan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Outer Space

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I would begin the lesson by asking the children ‘What do you know about space?’ which children would answer through mentimeter.com and the answers are recorded on the board.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Show the children some pictures of the solar system, planets and stars and ask the children to identify what is in the pictures.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Read “There’s No Place Like Space” (a Cat in the Hat book) and discuss the book

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Create a Starry Night – Give each child a piece of black paper and white chalk and draw  stars, planets, and other space objects. They can use space-themed stickers to add more details. Encourage creativity and ask questions such as  “What do you think it’s like to live on Mars?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Using tablets and Book Creator, allow students to work in small groups to research focus questions (e.g. “Which planet is the hottest?” or “How many moons does Saturn have?”) and create a book about what they have learned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Gather the students and ask them to present their book and share one new thing they learned about space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211769
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ashling,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  you have outlined a lovely set of cross curricular activities that involve research and arts about Space as a theme.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  To include science inquiry you might want to see what theories the children hold about why the solar system is the way it is – and perhaps help them find simple ways to explore some aspects of that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  So, if they find that the hottest planet is Venus, they might wonder if that is because it is close to the Sun – and how does being close to a heat source affect how warm you are? – simple inquiry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  or they might wonder if it is because it has a thick atmosphere — so how does wearing more clothes make you feel?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #211673
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Laura O’Meara
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi my name is Laura and I will be teaching in Junior Infants in September.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  A fact about space that I find interesting is that ‘Driving a car at 70mph to the nearest star would take more than 356 billion years’!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An inquiry based activity that always is well received in Infants is the Dancing Raisins experiment. For this what you need is 2 clear glasses. In one glass you put regular water and in the other you put a clear fizzy liquid such as sparkling water or 7up, the more fizz the better. I would ask the children prior to adding in the raisins what they think will happen in each glass and if there will be a different reaction in each glass. After this discussion we will add raisins to each glass. The children will observe the raisins in the glass with the fizzy liquid begin to move/dance in the glass. After we have observed the raisins dancing we will discuss why they danced in one glass and not the other and also if we could change anything to alter the outcome. We would then test out the different ideas the children have come up with.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #211782
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Laura – I like this experiment. You could try it with something denser than raisins and compare what happens and discuss why

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212804
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      David Gavin
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Laura,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love this activity. If I am ever teaching an Infant class ill be sure to try this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #211770
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Valerie Ryan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi, my name is Valerie and I still remember a sun fact I learned in 3rd Class – the sun is 93 million miles away! I was so struck by the colossal number. Pupils always have such fun with huge numbers and space provides endless opportunities to engage with them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        An enquiry based activity I have done with junior classes is the Ice Melting experiment which explores turning solids into liquids and allows the pupils to hypothesise. This experiment works well either as a whole class or in groups if you have another adult to hand!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I did this in groups and had the following materials/equipment: bowl of ice cubes, salt, sugar, water, access to the staffroom fridge and our heat source was the windowsill on a (rare) very sunny day in June.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The pupils discussed in advance which method they thought would melt the ice fastest. They picked a method in their groups, made their predictions and then carried out their experiment, recording the time taken for the ice to melt. The times varied widely and the experiment was revisited throughout the day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The pupils evaluated their hypotheses afterwards and compared their ice with other groups, leading to further discussions with their classmates, thinking about alternative scenarios, e.g. what if we used more/less ice in each bowl, bigger/smaller cubes, a different heat source, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They loved the practical aspect of it, seeing their own results as well as the results in other groups.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #211916
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Valerie,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            letting each group try out the activity in their own way is a natural way to bring fair testing into discussion. Can results be compared? Why or why not? This is the key to the “Sharing: Interpreting the data / results” part of the Investigation Stage of the Framework for Inquiry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212764
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Michelle Rowley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This is great with Junior Infants as it is so relatable and simple, yet they are using scientific language and methods. As well as melting ice, I have also used chocolate and then discussed how ice and chocolate melt by applying heat but then can return to a solid shape after too. I have toasted bread to show how some materials can change – by adding heat ( as with the chocolate/ water) but some can’t return to their original state – ie. bread once it is toasted it can’t return to bread. Again, a relatable material for young children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #211906
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dympna Kilcoyne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi, my name is Dympna and I have been teaching Junior and Senior Infants for the last few years. My favourite fact about space is that the sunset on Mars is blue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              One inquiry-based activity I have used in my classroom with Junior Infants is an investigation into strong and light materials using the story The Three Little Pigs as a prompt and to engage and interest the children. A question I would ask would be “I wonder what other materials the pigs could have chosen to build their houses…/The wolf could have blown down…” The children think of other materials or items around the room or from the nature table or Junk Art box etc. such as paper, cardboard, a wooden jaggo block, a feather, a metal spoon, a plastic pot, a plastic straw, a rock, a shell, pom, etc, naming the item and what it is made from. The starter question would be Could the wolf blow it down? We begin the investigation; first discuss what we will use as the wolf’s breath / air/ wind – and how to make sure it’s a fair investigation – a child could be picked to blow through a straw; a hairdryer at a low setting, a battery fan etc. (I have used all of these). We go through the items; first predicting yes or no and record each result by placing the item in the yes or no section of the investigation table like a 3D data chart/display. More interpretation and discussion of the results is done after; discussing why the wolf could blow – light or strong; was anyone surprised by this etc, making connections where applicable e.g. I used that for my Junk Art bird feeder but it blew away etc. Lots of reflection opportunities arise for me after when the children are prompted to make the pigs houses themselves during Aistear and I can see them choose light, weak, strong, very strong materials, and hear them using the correct vocabulary.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212091
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks for this detailed account of practical science in the infant classroom Dympna. Letting children have the time to explain their predictions – so that they are not just making “guesses” or trying to figure out what you think is the correct answer is so important. I like how you have planned for time for the children to connect to other familiar situations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #212373
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lauren Herbert
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I had forgotten about this lesson and it’s always a crowd pleaser! Will be trying this out again in September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212492
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Rachel Byrne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Dympna, I love this inquiry based activity for infants as it interlinks the story of ‘The Three little Pigs’ which I always use in my classroom when I am teaching construction as a theme in ‘Aistear’ or part of SESE (Houses/buildings/locality) etc., I also use it as part of Maths recently when children are exploring 3-D shapes for the first time using cocktail sticks and mini marshmallows. When I saw your inquiry based learning I also thought about how I could explore this activity as part of Language & Literacy not as a stand alone subject but interlinking it through oral language, reading & writing which then could lead on to interlinking this with Visual Art (create the three little Pigs houses using only crepe paper, mini lollipop sticks & red card etc.,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212240
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Barbara Sadlier
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi. I’m Barbara Sadlier and my favourite Space fact is that 68% of 3000 living  tardigrades survived 12 days in Earth’s orbit on the outside of a rocket. I love that further studies are being done on these little Earth dwellers’ ability to survive in Space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212244
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Barbara Sadlier
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I really like the inquiry based activity on Materials in this module. I will use this with my Infant class in the first term next year. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I would open with a spill as an introduction and discuss how we could clean it up. Then working in groups I would get the children to try out a few different materials to see how effective they are in soaking up the spill. I like the smiley faces worksheet as a way to record their findings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I particularly like the scope this lesson gives for further investigation into what other uses materials can have, and if they are not good for one purpose what can they be used for eg: designing a waterproof coat for teddy. This gives plenty of scope for integration across the curriculum into the areas of Geography, Art aswell as Oral Language.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I look forward to working on this with my class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #212371
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Lauren Herbert
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hello, my name is Lauren. I will be working in the MGLD class in September, with ages varying from 5 to 8. My favourite space fact is that some planets have no surface to land on. An inquiry based activity that I often do is the ‘Dancing Raisons’ experiment. For the equipment, you will need two clear glasses, one glass filled with still water and the other glass filled with sparkling. I then ask the children what they think will happen in each glass before adding the raisons; will they sink of float. When the raisons are added to the glass with fizzy water, they appear to dance as they float up and down. We then have a whole class discussion on why the raisons ‘danced’ in the glass with fizzy water and discuss that the increase in buoyancy helps the raisons to become less dense than the fizzy water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212410
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Lauren – Dancing Raisins ( English and Irish) is a lovely demonstration. The original activity was written before the Inquiry Framework was developed, but it can be made more child inquiry led by planning ahead to have different liquids and different objects to let the children try out for themselves to check their understanding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Does the surface of the material make a difference — do raisins work because they are wrinkly? what would happen if you used a smooth bit of plasticine instead? or a small nut that is smooth?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Is it the fizzes that are important – does differently fizzy water work as well? The activity sheet suggests that the drink should be freshly open to be very fizzy –  could you use fizzy vitamin tablets to make water fizzy and would that work?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212489
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Rachel Byrne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hello, My name is Rachel Byrne and I will be teaching Junior Infants this year. My favourite aspect about ‘Space’ that I remember from my own childhood is how the shape of the ‘Moon’ is not round but in actual fact shaped like a ‘lemon’. An inquiry-based learning activity (materials) that I have used and will continue to use in my classroom is ‘splashing in muddy puddles’. To ensure that I appeal to all learners in my classroom I always use a prompt/stimulus to engage my pupils in their learning at the beginning of the lesson and for students to use their prior knowledge/own personal experiences. For this activity I always use a video of a child in the rain jumping in muddy puddles with an umbrella/wet gear/wellies etc., I then start to ask the children ‘open-ended’ questions about what they have heard/saw and we start to predict/discuss what other materials we already know are waterproof etc., We then investigate ‘how to keep our socks dry’ by carrying out an experiment using a wellington, shoe, socks & water (basin), towels, outdoor/indoor area. Teacher asks the children to bring in some old clothing i.e. shoes/socks/wellingtons from home prior to these experiments. First, we predict whether the shoe/wellington will keep our socks dry. TI get children in groups (mixed ability all who have a different job) to carry out their experiment to test whether the shoe/wellington will keep their favourite socks dry. (Sometimes I will model what I want the children to do depending on the class, otherwise I let the children explore their own ways). At the end of the experiment we reflect on what happened and which shoe/wellington kept our favourite socks dry but I also ask the children to think of ways they could make non-waterproof shoes ‘waterproof’. This will also interlink with Visual Art as I get the children to create a new design shoe with a teacher design task of ‘make it waterproof’. While the children are carrying out their experiment I am facilitating their learning by moving around the room and asking questions like ‘I wonder… etc.,’. I also remind the children that when we are carrying out experiments we are ‘Scientists’.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212517
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rachel,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  you have clearly linked the science content and skills that you want the children to engage with, to a clear, relevant context. Nicely done.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212496
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Stephanie Mc Cann
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My name is Stephanie and I teach in an infant school. This year I have Senior Infants.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My favourite space fact is that black holes are formed from a massive star dying and the gravity within a black hole is so strong that not even light can escape.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  how you would use one inquiry-based activity for senior infants in your classroom:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This year my senior infant class really enjoyed the ‘sink or float’ experiment as it was hands on and everyone could get involved.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It allows children to be curious and helps develop critical thinking, to work as a group and listen to others opinions and make predicitions. It is also important to discuss with the class about how it doesn’t matter if your prediction is right or wrong, as both results teach us something new.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This activity allowed children to predict the buoyancy of an object and then test out the objects to explore their predictions. The children were encouraged to talk about each item and what material it was made of. Each group were provided with a cork, a plastic block, a stone, a coin, twig and a rubber duck. They were encouraged to think back to previous experiences with any of the objects and water, eg bath time and a rubber duck.. did the duck float or sink.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  They had to record their predictions first with a smiley face if they thought the object floated and a sad face if they thought the object would sink when we placed the object in water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The children then placed each object into the water and were encouraged to watch carefully to see if it sinks or floats. Then after each object is tested, they recorded the result next to their predictions on the chart. We then discussed ‘why we different objects sank and why some of them floated? How heavier objects often sink and lighter objects float and about how different material affects its buoyancy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212569
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Stephanie,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      you are so right about

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It is also important to discuss with the class about how it doesn’t matter if your prediction is right or wrong, as both results teach us something new.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      and children should realise that if their prediction was wrong, that their science understanding can be modified.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      There was a nice example of this in the ramps material that we were discussing last week – where a child might think that the lighter car will go further since a lighter toy can be thrown further than a heavier toy, they can then test this – and will likely find that the heavier object is less affected by friction, so goes further – and so will have to reconsider how different forces are acting on the object.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212639
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Mary Walker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Stephanie , I really love the idea of  the hands on lesson ‘ sink or float’ as the children truly get to engage and learn rather than just observing . I will definitely be keeping this in mind for September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212497
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Grace O’Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hello everyone, my name is Grace and I am a support teacher working with senior infants. I was scrolling through Instagram shorts last night and I found a space fact that I’m not sure is true, but it got me thinking anyway – scientists do not know where RH blood type came from, perhaps from somewhere else in space?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Using an inquiry-based space activity for senior infants would be a highly engaging and educational experience, fostering curiosity and critical thinking. I would create a “Space Explorer Mission.” I would set the stage with a story about a mission to a new planet. Provide children with simple, questions to guide their exploration, such as “What do you think we might find on this new planet?” or “How do astronauts travel to space?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Next, create hands-on activities where the children can explore these questions. For example, set up different stations with various space-themed activities: a craft station to build model rockets, a sensory bin with “moon sand” and hidden “space rocks,” and a station with picture books about planets and space travel.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Encourage children to ask their own questions during these activities. Prompt them to think about how astronauts live in space, what planets are like, and how rockets work. Facilitate discussions where they can share their ideas and hypotheses.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wrap up the activity with a “Mission Debrief,” where each child can share what they discovered or created. This debriefing session helps them process their learning, articulate their thoughts, and listen to others, reinforcing the inquiry-based approach. Through this method, children develop problem-solving skills, creativity, and a love for learning about space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212526
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Grace,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When planning science inquiry it is good to reference the Framework for Inquiry that specifically deals with child lead inquiry science, where the children’s science understanding is shared, leading to a testable question.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            So if children are playing with moon sand (https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/moon-sand) they might wonder ‘how long moon sand keeps its shape?’ They might ask ‘how much can you push moon sand before it crumples?’ A bit trickier to explain might be changing the recipe for moon sand and seeing does it change its properties.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            If they build working rocket models, then they can explore forces, compare distance travelled and share those results.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            With inquiry learning the children should improve their science content understanding by acting as scientists and testing their ideas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And about the blood from space – I found this article that says probably not true.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212538
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Laura Reidy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Grace. I love your idea of a space explorer mission. This is perfect for the infant classroom and would tie in nicely with Aistear and many other subjects for meaningful integration across the curriculum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #212532
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Laura Reidy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi, my name is Laura and I will be teaching 1st class in September. I have been teaching junior and senior infants for the past 14 years so this will be a change! My favourite space fact is that Venus spins in the opposite direction and is the only planet in our solar system to do this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I love science and really enjoy teaching this subject. As I’m going into 1st class, I look forward to doing lots of enquiry based activities with the children. There is so much for scope for deeper thinking and learning and I love to teach through group and pair work which is perfect for this kind of tracing and learning. The examples given in module one were all very practical and interesting ways to teach about gravity and materials. I have taught lessons in infants that were enquiry based and very hands on in how we investigated and tested materials when trying to figure out which materials were waterproof and ones that were not. I love the idea of giving the children a stater question or fun scenario to begin the lesson. I am a big advocate of learning through play and this is a perfect way to introduce a topic and get the children invested and interested. I look forward to checking out all of the activities and ideas on the curious minds website and putting them into practise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212670
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Laura,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  can you give examples of prompts that you have found suitable? I agree that scenarios work nicely. There has to be some reason why children should want to find out more!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212534
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Muireann McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi. My name is Muireann McCarthy. I have taught Senior Infants last year and I have Senior Infants for the next school year. I am excited to learn some space activities for the classroom. My favourite space fact is that shooting stars aren’t stars. They are actually tiny pieces od rock or dust from space that burns up in Earth’s atmosphere.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #212540
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Muireann McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Inquiry based activity:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Fill one of the plastic bottles about ¾ full of water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Add a couple of drops of food colouring.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Add about a teaspoon of glitter to the coloured water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The glitter represents the dust in the tornado.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tape the top of the empty bottle to the top of the bottle with the water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Make sure the tape is secure around the bottle tops.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Turn the bottles around making sure the bottle with the water in it is on top.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Watch as the water flows from the top bottle into the bottom bottle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The water flows slowly from the top bottle into the bottom bottle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Also, air bubbles travel up through the water in the top bottle, making a noise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hold the bottles where they are connected and quickly swirl them in a circular motion for a few seconds. Stop and look inside the bottles. There will be a mini tornado in the top bottle as the water flows quickly and quietly into the bottom bottle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212556
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Muireann,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        you have described an attractive demonstration that could be used as a prompt for the children to engage with your topic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        With this tornado demo, the children might wonder about pouring smoothly – so you could give them a range of containers and water or other liquids to see how pouring creates glugs / noise / bubbles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They might know about hot water bottles and how it is tricky to pour into a hot water bottle since the air has to come out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        In all inquiry activities the children should have a chance to share what they understand of the science, and make testable predictions. Some of these predictions may lead to a full-on, fair test activity, some might be quickly checked and then the children will move on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212637
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Mary Walker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi ,my name is Mary and I’ve been teaching for over 20 years now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My favourite fact about space would have to be that you wouldn’t be able to walk on Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus or Neptune as they have no solid surface!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The inquiry based activity I would choose to recreate with a younger class would be that of creating our own model solar systems. I would start the lesson by watching a YouTube video explaining in fun and simple terms what a solar is and what it consists of. Following that I would have the children go into groups of 4 and begin discussing why they think the solar system follows the order it does . After the topic has been discussed and questioned I would begin the physical task of creating our solar systems. The equipment the children would have in their groups would be either foam spheres of alternating sizes or even stones, I would supply them paint ,pipe cleaners , glitter, glue and Pom poms and then they would have put the planets in the order they think is right. After each group has completed this task I would have them present their solar systems to the class one by one and explain why they put the planets in this specific order. I believe this would be an educational and fun inquiry based lesson .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212812
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mary – What video would you show the kids? ESA has a lovely kids series on their youtube about an alien named Paxi who travels the solar system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212651
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sharon Murphy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi I’m Sharon and am going into my second year teaching a junior autism class. My favourite space fact is that the number of stars in the Milky Way is probably higher than the number of humans that have ever been born! Shows how enormous it is!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #212665
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sharon Murphy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                An inquiry-based activity I would use would be on the topic of the solar system. I would use the solar system song as an initial introduction to the eight planets in the solar system. This song gives three to four facts about each planet and displays them in the correct order from the sun and their size comparable to one another and the sun.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Each group/child would be given a blank planet made out of paper mache and asked to paint it the colour of the planet that their group has been assigned.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                While the planets are drying the children would be encouraged to use books/iPads to research some facts about their planet.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                When the planets are dry each group would present their planet and facts about their planet to the whole class

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212816
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sharon – That’s a lovely lesson. Can you provide a link to the solar system song?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #212762
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Michelle Rowley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hello everyone, my name is Michelle, I teach in a junior school and Science is one of the areas I love to teach. My favourite science fact is one a pupil added to our ‘Space Fact Wall’ when using Space as a theme last year – The Sunset on Mars appears blue!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    This was a successful enquiry based activity in my classroom this year, it was Art as well as Science and Engineering. We made a class ‘Marble Run’.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    First using some sets of toy Marble Runs to see how they actually worked. Then looking at videos of large wall mounted Marble Runs. After that discussing what materials would be best to use – we thought toilet/ kitchen rolls, and designing what their particular section would look like. Finally making their section of the marble run- as it was also art, these sections were highly decorative! They loved the making part and thinking about the shape / angles for their sections. I pinned all the various sections onto the wall. We had lots of testing, the marble fell off many times. Again discussion as to what would make it better/ how we could make a corner – egg cartons were decided and some plastic bottle sections. This was ongoing for about a week before we got the marble to run from the top to the bottom into a paper cup

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212785
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Michelle,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I’m glad you have shared your experience with ramps – I also make marble runs with pipe insulation cut in half lengthways.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Please see this site about ramps, where they argue that ramps  and pathways is one of the best activities for teaching forces and inquiry science with young children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      They found

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ramps and Pathways gives children endless possibilities to think and create. They build, test their ramp structures, make adjustments, and try again until they are successful. We have found that children are motivated to engage in this process because of the intriguing nature of the materials.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Summary article here: https://qappd.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/fun_physical_science.pdf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213005
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Michelle Rowley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks, that looks great. Making the marble run and using ramps indeed allows children to easily test and retest the structure they have built. It was a great hands on activity which led to lots of discussion between the children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #212701
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dolores Mc Monagle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hello everyone. My name is Dolores and I’ve been interested in Science-based learning all my life! I am really looking forward to the rest of the Modules and how the information can be used in the classroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Enquiry-based activity in the Junior Room

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Learning Objective:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        To investigate the effects colour mixing has on a paper towel.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        To ENGAGE the children, I will ask them questions in order to PROMPT them – What will happen when we apply colours to a paper towel?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This will lead to the children WONDERING what will happen when colours are applied to paper towel. They will make PREDICTIONS. This in turn will lead to the children wanting to EXPLORE colours and their effects on materials.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        When the children are beginning their INVESTIGATING I will ask them a starter question about materials and which materials would be suitable to use when exploring colours.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The children will share their PREDICTIONS with their peers. We will then CONDUCT THE INVESTIGATION and apply colours to kitchen roll and see the effects. The children will then INTERPRET THE DATA/RESULTS and share their findings with the rest of the class.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The children will TAKE THE NEXT STEP by APPLYING THEIR LEARNING through investigating the use of mixing colours on other materials. They will apply their learning by MAKING CONNECTIONS with other subjects (art).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I will REFLECT on the lesson and ask myself how the lesson went, what could I have adapted or changed and how I could extend the lesson.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212784
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Dolores,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            you have clearly engaged with the framework for inquiry and how children can learn science through the stepped structure of the framework.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We used a similar activity with a “life in space” theme in this resource from 2020 –  Creeping Colours from Curious Minds was extended to model identifying the signs of life by spectroscopy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            That could make a next step for your early finishers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212803
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          David Gavin
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is David and I am currently teaching in Learning Support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I would use the following inquiry based activity in the classroom-Floating and sinking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The “Sinking or Floating: Buoyancy Exploration” experiment introduces young children to the concept of buoyancy through hands-on exploration. By predicting and observing the behaviour of different objects in water, children develop critical thinking skills and gain an understanding of why objects sink or float.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Engage:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Present the children with a wide range of materials.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Pose various questions to the children such as “ Do you think this plastic will float or sink?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Materials:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Container of water
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Various objects (wooden block, plastic toy, metal spoon, rubber ball, foam ball, paper clip, etc.)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Notebook or chart paper
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Pencil or markers
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Paper towels for cleanup

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Wondering- The children will brainstorm ideas on what makes an object float or sink.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Exploring- Allow the children to go through the items and try classify objects according to whether they float or sink

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Investigate:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Starter question-why do some things float and why do some things sink?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Prediction-Do you think the items will float or sink-record your predictions on worksheet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Introduce buoyancy and discuss sinking and floating objects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Have children predict whether each object will sink or float based on its characteristics.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Fill the container with water and invite children to take turns placing objects in it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Record observations in notebooks or on chart paper.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Facilitate a discussion on patterns and similarities between sinking and floating objects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Summarise buoyancy concept and encourage reflection on predictions

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Reflection-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ask children to consider what materials they would use to construct a boat. Pose questions such as ‘ What other factors other than buoyancy would you need to consider in order to make a boat ‘

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #212810
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi David, nice lesson. I really like the follow up discussion of constructing a boat, that is a lovely fun way of evaluating the children’s learning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #212836
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Padraig McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hello,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I’m teaching 2nd class. I have a big interest in space, it is really facinating. My favourite space fact is that one million earths could fit inside the sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212841
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Padraig McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Inquiry based space lesson in the classroom:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The children could create their own ‘solar system’. The children would be provided with different-sized balls for planets, paint, and information cards about each planet. Let the children explore and create their own mini solar systems while learning about the plants and their characteristics. It will spark curiosity and engagement in space science.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212860
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Clodagh McClean
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love this idea. In the past, I have used different foods to highlight the differences in size, with the smallest (Mercury) being a peppercorn and the largest (Jupiter) being a watermelon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #214287

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Pádraig,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love the idea of a class solar system. Fair play and will be taking inspiration from this for next year .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #212857
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Clodagh McClean
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hello, my name is Clodagh and I will be teaching Senior Infants this coming year.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love teaching about space and always find that the children are so engaged in it. I primarily use inquiry based discovery and story books to help my children understand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      One activity that my class particularly enjoyed to realise the grand scale of space was to get some playdough and divide it into 51 parts. They then, in pairs, put them in two groups, one to represent the moon and the other to represent the earth. It is interesting to see their different understandings on the size difference.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The actual ratio is 50:1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      they have also loved investigations with different food and comparing the sizes of different planets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I never realised how many resources were available on the esero website and particularly the Climate detectives initiative. I really look forward to trying them with my class in September

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #212873
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Clodagh, that’s a lovely hands on activity that will help them to visualise the scale of things. You could extend this by comparing Earth to the Sun for example, or to the planets or even try roughly sizing out the whole solar system to scale.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #212932
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Laura O Neill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A lesson that I have done before is to make bird feeders with my class. I started by posing the problem – “It is Winter and birds find it difficult to find food to survive”. We discussed what we could do to help and suggested making bird feeders. I had a variety of materials ready that children could explore and use when making the feeders. They worked in groups and decided on their plan. Some groups used an empty plastic bottle filled with seeds and made little holes for birds to feed from. Other groups used an empty toilet-roll tube, covered it with peanut butter and rolled it in seeds. They then threaded a string through this to hang it from a branch. We then hung them outside and eagerly waited for the birds to eat the seeds. We made predictions about the types of birds that we might see and were excited to see if our predictions were right or not. We also discussed which feeder we thought worked best and decided the plastic bottles lasted longer and didn’t crumble in the rain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #212934
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Laura O Neill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Laura and I will be teaching 1st class in September. My favourite space fact is that space is completely silent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A lesson that I have done before is to make bird feeders with my class. I started by posing the problem – “It is Winter and birds find it difficult to find food to survive”. We discussed what we could do to help and suggested making bird feeders. I had a variety of materials ready that children could explore and use when making the feeders. They worked in groups and decided on their plan. Some groups used an empty plastic bottle filled with seeds and made little holes for birds to feed from. Other groups used an empty toilet-roll tube, covered it with peanut butter and rolled it in seeds. They then threaded a string through this to hang it from a branch. We then hung them outside and eagerly waited for the birds to eat the seeds. We made predictions about the types of birds that we might see and were excited to see if our predictions were right or not. We also discussed which feeder we thought worked best and decided the plastic bottles lasted longer and didn’t crumble in the rain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #212969
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Corinna Carolan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Laura, I like your idea of making bird feeders with your class & how you went about it.  We have bird feeders up in our school but shop bought ones as opposed to class made ones.  I’d say the children are delighted with the end results and it must be lovely to hang them outside the window and see the birds feeding from them. I imagine the children really engage with this activity and come up with a range of different feeders.  It must be good for their problem solving too and working collaboratively.  Something I might borrow for next year. Thanks

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #212998
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofjane.dooley@bco.ieJane Dooley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                TeachNet Moderator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Laura- This is a lovely activity!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #213602
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rachael Donnellan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I would love to try make a bird feeder with my class next year! I think this is a lovely idea and the children would enjoy seeing the birds feeding from their creations!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #212966
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Corinna Carolan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, my name is Corinna.  I’ve been working in SEN the last few years.  Two of the children I work with in a 1 – 1 capacity have a great interest in space and I’m hoping what I learn here I can use to engage their interests next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My space fact is that over 1 million earths could fit into our sun!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Inquiry- based activity: Which ball is the bounciest?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Engage – Prompt question: We’re going to work on our bouncing and catching skills in PE.  Which balls do you think will be bouncy and good for us to use.  Show children a selection of balls – sponge, plastic, tennis, rubber, Play Dough ball etc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Investigate – Children get to feel materials, discuss, predict, conduct a fair experiment

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Next step – talk about tennis games and which ball they use and why, balls are replaced when they lose their bounciness etc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Reflect –  on my objectives, children’s progress and use of correct language, what went well?, what would I change? etc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213218
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi Corinna,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        you have identified one of the key ideas of the framework for inquiry -which is to let the children engage with the ideas that you want them to learn before carrying out the investigation. In this case, playful time with the balls may lead to the investigation quite naturally – as you model “I wonder…” statements and let the children tell you what they wonder, and what they think is going on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213189
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Emma O Connor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My name is Emma, I will be teaching infants this year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My favourite fact about space is that every day, several tonnes of material falls to Earth from space and every time you’re outside, you stand a chance of catching some of this space dust in your hair. It’s highly likely you’ve already caught some and later washed it out without knowing it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I would start with a story that incorporates push and pull, such as “The Little Red Hen” or ‘The Enormous Turnip a simple book about motion. We would discuss if they have ever pushed or pulled something. What was it? How did it move? I would record their answers.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As I am in infants I would use exploration Stations. I often like to use the morning time and I rotate me groups so they try one station each day. It also gives me time to really hone in, focus on a group, focus their learning by using the trigger questions and give me time to listen to their answers and their understanding.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Station 1: Toy Car Races. Encourage children to push the cars down the ramps. Ask them to observe how the cars move.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Station 2: Tug-of-War • Use a sturdy piece of string for a gentle tug-of-war game. Discuss the differences in movement when one person pulls harder than the other.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Station 3: Magnetic Push and Pull •
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Let children explore how magnets can push and pull objects without touching them. Ask questions like, “What happens when you bring two magnets close together?” and “How do they move?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        •Station 4: Water or Sand Play. Encourage children to push and pull the objects through the water or sand. Discuss how water or sand creates resistance and affects movement.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Gather the children and discuss what they observed at each station. Ask open-ended questions such as, “What was easy to push?” “What was hard to pull?” “Why do you think some objects moved faster than others?”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Encourage children to explain their thinking and make predictions about different objects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Children could to draw their favourite push or pull activity from the weekly activites on Friday and I would read one of the stories I mentioned initially.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213219
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Emma,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            thanks for sharing this detailed and useable plan. I like how you use “why do you think…” questions to help the children to articulate their science understanding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks also for sharing the space dust fact- it sent me on a “lets find out more” quest:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20230915-the-cosmic-dust-sitting-on-your-roof

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #213252
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Jill O Callaghan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Emma, this is an excellent idea for a lesson on forces and is something I would love to try with infants next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #213585
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Rachel Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I really like the idea of the exploration stations. It would allow for children to really zone in on a certain topic and cover various activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #214118
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Ciara Hayden
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Emma I love this idea of ‘Exploration Stations’ to start the day, based in science, but rooted in a book or story.  The children in first and second classes would welcome this investigative start to their day, and they would subsequently be in a learning mindset and ready to continue their day after a positive start.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #213251
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Jill O Callaghan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I’m Jill. Next year I will be teaching Senior Infants. My favourite space fact: the sun is very big, one million earths could fit inside the sun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Inquiry-Based Activity: My activity is based on light and exploring light with different materials. Before beginning the lesson I would tell the children a story about a little boy who is always woken up very early in the morning because he has no blinds in his room. He really wants to get some blinds but he does not know what material they should be made of. The children will have a range of materials to test and a flashlight. Before recording results they will predict if they think the light will shine through or not. Materials used will include, paper, newspaper, tissue, cardboard, and tinfoil. Using their results the children will decide on which material would be most effective to use as blinds to stop the light from coming through.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #213342
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Jill,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      this can be treated as an investigation activity or a design and make using the results of their exploration with the materials.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It can be connected to “• explore how shadows are formed” – if they treat the darkness of the shadow as the desired condition. (from Infants Science)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Please note that 1st/2nd class has “• investigate the relationship between light and materials” and that the activity you are planning is an exemplar for 3rd/4th class (design and make a light shade for bedroom), so I’d check with colleagues that they don’t plan to do this later in the children’s school years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #213451
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Helen O Sullivan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My name is Helen O Sullivan and I am a Senior Infant teacher .I love every minute of teaching the seniors.I love their curious minds and their total lack of filter !!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My amazing space fact :Myself and the1st  landing on the moon are the same age !!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Inquiry based Activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My children loved this

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It provides plenty of scope for discussion and oral language. There is scope for worksheet activity after where they can write, label and draw their activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Title: Chemical Bonds: stretch when freezing so that ice becomes less dense that water

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have great fun asking them to explain how they can watch this property in action!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      So we pour the water into a plastic bottle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We note where the water level is at.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      After leaving in a freezer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We compare the volume of the liquid and solid after freezing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I then ask them how can this work in reverse/where should we leave the water/how long should we leave it there for

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We make a jug of ice water. Again mark the level the water is at.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Allow the ice to melt and note the new level

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      This whole activity allows the children to see two activities around one concept

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213532
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Eleanor Mccaffrey
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hello

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I’m Eleanor McCaffrey – a SET teacher in junior school in Donegal – I’ve always been intrigued about gravity since I was a child and my mum told me about Issac Newton and the Apple -was always looking at the Apple trees in our orchid after that 😀

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As SET I go in and help the junior clsss teachers and this year in senior infants / first class we made a planet display – we integrated it into our maths by talking about shape and size and how far from the earth / sun the planets were – the children made the planets different colours and sizes and some in 1st class even worked on number of syllables in each planets name and we integrated this into our UFLI lesson ! By end of year most of the children could name the planets and their size – an enjoyable fun activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213541
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Eleanor,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            integrating the facts about planets into maths and language is a super way to include them with junior classes. The Solar system / planets only appear in SESE Geography for 5th and 6th class (too late in my opinion) – so having a reason to include earlier is great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213583
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rachel Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Rachel and I am excited to learn more about how the theme ‘Space’ can be used in the classroom.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Inquiry based activity- Floating Ice Activity.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Talk to your students about the chemical bonds that hold water molecules together. Explain how those bonds stretch out when water freezes so that ice becomes less dense than liquid water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Pour water into a plastic bottle and then place it in the freezer. Compare the volume of the liquid and solid water after freezing.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Fill a jug of ice water. Draw a line where the water level is before the ice melts. Allow the ice to melt into the water and make a second line where the water level is now. Compare the two.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • This activity could also lead onto “Floating & Sinking”- the children have large bowls of water. In each group they will have a number of materials. They will have a sheet predicting what will float and then they will record their results. This will encourage group work and co-operation as well as inquiry based learning and investigation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #213591
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rachel,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I’d be reluctant to mention chemical bonds to any class in primary, let alone a junior class. This language is very much second level. (see this Junior Cycle Science booklet).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                5th and 6th class Science asks the children to “explore the effects of heating and cooling on a range of solids, liquids and gases” and includes expansion of water on freezing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                There is a floating and sinking of ice activity in ESERO called “The Ice is Melting” but it is more about the effects of land ice vs sea ice – and for older classes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                For a junior class, the changes that happen when ice is formed can be demoed, and linked to cooking (you shouldn’t fill the container when you freeze food!) – but noting the change is sufficient. Children might then explore if different liquids that are less water based (oil for example) also freeze the same way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #213587
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Rachel Breen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My favourite space fact is that space is completely silent. There is no air or atmosphere in space. Since it is a vacuum, sound waves have no medium to travel to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #213600
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rachael Donnellan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi, my name is Rachael. I will be teaching Senior Infants. I am excited to learn more about how space can be taught in my class next year. My favourite space fact is that the surface of the sun is 60 times hotter than boiling water.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An inquiry-based activity that I would like to do with my class is ‘Dancing Raisins’. I will give each group two glasses- one glass of water and one glass of 7-up. I will give the children some raisins each and we will discuss what we think will happen when we put the raisins into the water- will they float/ will they sink? Will they move? Etc. Discuss what they think will happen when they put the raisins into the 7-up. They will then all get a turn at putting some of the raisins into each glass. They will see that the water has no affect on the raisins- the raisins just sink to the bottom and in the glass with the 7-up the raisins should be ‘dancing’ up and down. I would give out a sheet with an image of two glasses- one with a glass of water and one 7-up. The children will draw what happened during their experiment.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We will also discuss why the raisins were moving. When you first drop the raisins in the soda they sink to the bottom of the glass because they are more dense than the soda. But the carbonated soda releases carbon dioxide bubbles and these bubbles love to attach to the rough surface of the raisins. They act like tiny floatation devices that lift the raisin to the surface of the water. This is due to an increase in buoyancy. Once the carbon dioxide bubbles reach the surface of the soda they pop and the gas is released into the air. This makes the raisin lose buoyancy and fall back down to the bottom of the glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #213663
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Rachael,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dancing Raisins is great fun – both in English and in Irish. It is one of those really nice demonstrations that is easy to extend into an investigation, by responding to the children’s questions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      If they think the raisins are the key part – try with other small items. If they think the fizz is the most important – try with different levels of fizz (perhaps by mixing fizzy drink with water – or by stirring the drink to get the fizz out).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      In all cases, the children’s science explanation can be modified in light of what they notice happening.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213893
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rhonda Rawle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        <p class=”helperbird-font-opendyslexic-regular”>Hi Rachael, I have done this science experiment with my 2nd class and they absolutely loved it and found it fascinating. A lovely simple effective science experiment that can be implemented in any class level.</p>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213653
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ciara Evans
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hello,  my name is Ciara O Malley. I am currently on maternity leave but prior to this i was teaching 5th class. I like the space fact thatOn Mercury a day is twice as long as a year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Prior to the inquiry based lesson to be thought about the size of planets the students would need to be familiar to the name and order of the planets in the solar system. I will assess this by using a KWLchart. The lesson would be introduced to the students by asking the students to line themselves up from tallest to shortest. Introduce the lesson by stating that we are going to put the planets in order from smallest to biggest using fruit. Watching the video on You~Tube students will be shown what fruit represents the planet. Students will math the planet to the corrrect fruit. Once completed they will put in order from smallest to biggest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #213724
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Cliodhna Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          An interesting fact about space that I learned last week at the Armagh Planetarium is that a day in Venus is longer than a year in Venus!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213727
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Cliodhna Kelly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My name is Clíodhna and I will be teaching 2nd class in September.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The activity investigating “Which material do you think might be best to soak up the spill?” is highly engaging for students as it involves hands-on experimentation. I would start with a discussion, asking them to predict which material they believe will be most effective and why. Have students work in small groups to test their hypotheses by pouring a measured amount of water onto a surface and using each material to soak it up. They will observe and record how much water each material absorbs. After the experiment, gather as a class to compare results and discuss which material was most effective and why, considering factors such as material composition and structure. The use of different materials and water captures their interest and curiosity. Using the scientific method allows Students to learn to ask questions, form hypotheses, conduct experiments, and draw conclusions. They develop critical thinking skills in making predictions and analysing results. And they also work in groups to promote teamwork and communication. I would also encourage students to think about other questions they could explore with similar experiments.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #213768
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mairead O Sullivan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi my mane is Mairead O’ Sullivan. My favourite space fact is that ‘Shooting stars blaze a range of colours based on the elements they’re made of’.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Inquiry Based Lesson: how sugar dissolves: Skittles Experiment 2nd class

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Equipment Needed: skittle, plates, water, hot water and milk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I placed the Skittles into a white container and tried to alternate the colours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I Carefully poured water into the container.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Then I handed out the materials to the children in small groups. They had to complete the experiment in groups.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We watched what happened.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We discussed their predictions, and the new language presented. The children recorded the experiment using pictures and labels. The children then peer assessed each others’ work. The children loved watching the colours. To extend the activity we used milk, and hot water to see if there were any changes to the experiment. I will definitely do this lesson next year. To extend this I would get the children to predict in written form. The children really enjoyed this experiment. It was hands-on, group accessible and easily differentiated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #213845
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Mairead,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  thanks for sharing your space fact- I had thought it was just to do with the gases in the atmosphere- so looked it up!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  https://www.rmg.co.uk/stories/topics/15-awe-inspiring-astronomy-discoveries

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I like the way you have extended the very pretty skittles activity to explore different liquids. That nicely ties into Materials>Materials and Change >explore the effects of water on a variety of materials  and the careful observations even access parts of Light > dark and bright colours and different shades of colour.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I had read a while ago that gender affects colour naming, it has been established that from a young age girls name colours better. See this article: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/258831976_Gender_differences_in_colour_naming

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  have you noticed that?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #213887
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Aoife Wadding
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Mairead! I just love this experiment. Such an effective activity for all ages. I have done this with both first and sixth class and each time they all loved it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #213824
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sarah Byrne
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, my name is Sarah and my favourite space fact is ‘There are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth’.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Inquiry-based activity in the classroom.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Experiment taken from Discover Primary Science
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Rocket Launch
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Students will explore how a rocket launches through exploring forces such as push and pull.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Materials:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Large balloons (long shaped), Balloon pump, String 3-4 m long, Drinking straw, Clothes-peg, Sellotape,Two chairs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Introduction: Show a video of a rocket launching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ask, “What do you see?, ‘How is the rocket launching?, ‘How does it stay in one direction?’

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Engagement: Show a video of a rocket launching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Discuss the terms push and pull
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Exploration: Provide the materials
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Blow up a long shaped balloon and let it go. Notice what happens.(The balloon will travel off in random fashion as the air rushes out the back of it.) Now control the path of the balloon by connecting it to a piece of string. (The balloon will whiz along the string).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Explanation: Gather students and have them share their models.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Discuss how the air coming out of the back of the balloon pushes the balloon forward. This is Investigating and experimenting how rockets work – the hot burning gases rushing out the back of the rockets push them forwards.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Elaboration: What will happen if we use different shape balloons?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Evaluation: Ask students to draw their models and discuss if the balloon went further with more or less air in it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Conclusion:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Reinforce the key points

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213869
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sarah,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        you have clearly outlined an inquiry approach to rockets, using a useful prompt, with time for the children to wonder and explore.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The investigation aspect is straight forward enough and I like the starter question you have implied – does a string make a difference to where a balloon rocket goes?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There are further starter questions that naturally arise as “take the next steps

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What will happen if we use different shape balloons?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Does the balloon go further if there is more or less air in it?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        To assess how the children’s science understanding is changing, ask them to explain their prediction. Their explanations will then be supported or refuted by the activity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #213858
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ciara FaganBarrett
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My name is Ciara and I will be teaching senior infants in September. I have really enjoyed teaching space in the junior end of the school and incorporated as an Aistear topic. However I felt that I could do so much more to bring this vast topic to life and I’m looking forward to gaining a greater insight and strategies on this course. The younger pupils really enjoy fun facts and are hooked when they find out that astronauts can’t burp in space!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #213898
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Ciara,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            you might want to share this with the burp-fascinated children

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            https://www.spacecentre.co.uk/news/space-now-blog/grossology/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • #214041
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ciara FaganBarrett
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Frances,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Brilliant, thanks for the recommendation!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #214007
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Tracy Frawley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi Ciara

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am the same! Space was one of my Aistear topics this year. with Senior Infants. The children really loved it, but I wasnt sure myself how I could incorportate science and STEM more into it, at an appropriate level. Looking forward to learning more. I never knew astronauts can’t burp in space!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #213886
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Aoife Wadding
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi I’m Aoife and I have been teaching 3rd & 4th class for the past number of years. This coming September I will enter into a mixed junior & senior infants class.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My favourite science fact is that human teeth are just as strong as shark teeth! The children were given a task towards the end of the year in my class to complete a science experiment or conduct research into one area and this was something a child told us. How interesting!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Inquiry based learning in science is effectively done through science experiments. This allows children to ask themselves questions throughout about what might happen next or what they could do differently next time. An experiment that I conducted with my class was creating a parachute for an egg. The children were then asked to drop the egg from a height. If their parachute worked their egg wouldn’t break. Children participated in groups and it was so interesting to watch their thought processes throughout.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • #213890
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rhonda Rawle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi all, my name is Rhonda, and I am a 2nd class teacher with a passion for integrating science and inquiry-based learning into the classroom. I’ve always been fascinated by the cosmos and enjoy sharing that wonder with my students.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  One of my favourite space facts is about the Voyager 1 spacecraft. Launched in 1977, it is the most distant human-made object from Earth, currently traveling through interstellar space. It carries the Golden Record, a message for potential extraterrestrial life, featuring sounds and images from Earth. This incredible journey not only highlights human ingenuity but also our deep curiosity and desire to explore the unknown.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  One effective inquiry-based activity I use in my classroom revolves around the phases of the Moon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I start by presenting a simple question to my students: “Why does the Moon change shape?” Instead of directly providing the answer, I encourage them to observe the Moon over a month and record their observations. They draw the different phases they see each night and note any patterns or changes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  In the classroom, we discuss their observations and compare them with each other. I then provide various materials (e.g., a lamp, balls to represent the Earth and Moon) for them to create models and simulations to test their hypotheses about the Moon’s phases. This hands-on investigation allows students to discover the concept of the Moon’s phases through direct experience and guided questioning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Through this activity, students learn to gather data, develop hypotheses, and test their ideas. They also enhance their critical thinking and collaborative skills by working together to refine their models and explanations. By leading students to find answers themselves, I foster a deeper understanding and appreciation for the scientific process, making the learning experience more meaningful and engaging.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #213895
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi Rhonda,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      welcome to the course. Did you know that you can see where Voyager is at this site? https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/status/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The phases of the Moon is a tricky topic in the primary curriculum, since it doesn’t actually appear! (it is in Junior Cycle Science).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Geography expects that children will discuss the Moon, but says nothing about its changing appearance, and even at 5th/6th class it only has

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      develop a simple understanding of the interrelationship of these bodies, including day and night and seasonal movements (Planet Earth in space)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I do think it worth looking at the phases of the Moon, but treat it as Science / Light and shadow – • explore how shadows are formed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • #214021
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tracy Frawley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, I’m Tracy and I’m teaching infants again next year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      One of my favourite space facts is that one million earths could fit inside the sun- and the sun is considered an average-sized star!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Inquiry based-learning: Forces/ Floating and sinking (Displacement idea from Irish Marine Institute)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Children love this activity. Trigger: linked to Green School/ MarineFlag/ Children have been learning about sea creatures…

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Wonder:  All the creatures we are learning about can float.  I wonder why some things can float and other things sink?  Brainstorm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Explore the materials provided: e.g. cork, feather, stone, paper clip, coin, cotton wool ball, pencil.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Starter Q/ Prediction: Which of these will float/ sink? Why? Children may think that it is due to the weight of an object….

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Conducting the investigation in groups. Does it sink straight away or does it take a little while? Does it float high up in the water? Record using smiley/ sad face. Were you surprised by what floated and what sank?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Apply the learning: Get the students to use plasticine to learn about displacement of water to float (flatten it)/ sink (rolled up in a ball). Also observe what happens to a balloon in water when it’s not blown up (solid mass) and blown up (expanded with air in it)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Children could also design and make their own boat from plasticine or any other material. (yoghurt cartons/ butter cartons, etc)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #214040
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ciara FaganBarrett
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Inquiry-Based Activity in the Classroom:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        In senior infants we carried out an investigation to find out which materials would be best suited to make an umbrella and then had great fun making them! The pupils suggested a number of materials including plastic, tinfoil, cardboard, paper and felt and made predictions about which they thought would be most effective and why. They carried out in small groups so everyone got to be involved in all aspects of the inquiry-based activity. Then each group presented their findings to the whole class and we reflected on the results.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I like the lesson in module 1 investigating how to clean up the spill and the use of The Curious Minds/ESERO Framework for inquiry which I wasn’t familiar with prior to the course. I will definitely be putting into practice going forward in my planning and utilising the fantastic classroom resources and activities.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #214051
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Aoife Dillon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            That’s a great idea for a lesson. I will definitely be trying it in the future. I’m sure the children loved the hands-on aspect of solving the problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • #214050
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Aoife Dillon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hello, my name is Aoife. This coming school year I will be working as a supply panel teacher.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My favourite space fact is that there are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches in the world.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            One inquiry based lesson I have used previously is when learning about forces in second class. I introduce magnets to the students and give them a basket of items to check if they are magnetic. The students take some time testing the different items and I give them time to conduct their own experiments with the magnets around the classroom. Afterwards we discuss what was magnetic, if there are any patterns or similarities about the items which are magnetic. We also discuss if they discovered anything else about the magnets. Often they realise magnets can both attract and repel. They discover magnets can be used through different objects and that they attract metals. The children really enjoy the independence of getting to explore with the magnets. It is also a great way to practise collaboration in groups or pairs. It is fun to see them make these discoveries on their own.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #214201
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Aoife- you have inquiry practice perfectly described – children learning by exploring and testing and answering their own questions. As you lead discussion at the end the children can share what they have found out and you can help them to see the patterns in magnetic / non-magnetic materials and the extra feature that magnets can repel other magnets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • #214116
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Ciara Hayden
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi all
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My name is Ciara and I teach some very inquisitive boys in 1st and 2nd classes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                One of my favourite space facts is that in space, sound cannot travel because there is no air or other medium to carry sound waves. Astronauts can only hear music inside their spacecraft or through headphones.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I love sharing Chris Hadfield’s videos and songs from space with children.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Beginning with this topic of life in space, and specifically Music in Space, we discuss how astronauts listen to music inside the spacecraft.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I play a recording of music and ask students to imagine how it might feel to listen to their favorite songs while floating in space.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I then introduce the String Telephone, inviting the children to use plastic cups and string to create a simple string telephone. Subsequently, I let students experiment with speaking and listening through the cups to understand how sound travels through the string.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                There is great chatter and engagement as they try to hear their partners across a busy room, or outside into yard if necessary. Advice is shared with each other on how to fix problems, or why one is functioning more successfully than another.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Finally I encourage students to ask more questions and think about other challenges and solutions for living and working in space, finishing up with some more clips of Chris Hadfield and the practicalities of life in space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #214200
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ciara,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    what a super way to connect an investigation to a space theme – around how sound travels through media and that vacuum stops sound!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I like this as a the prompt is clear and you have given lots of time for exploring. By sharing advice they are using their design and make skills to evaluate – great stuff.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • #214194
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Niamh O Sullivan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My name is Niamh. I will have 2nd class next year. I have had 3rd and 4th class for several years and they have always really enjoyed hands on science activities. Two space facts I found interesting were that about 14 tonnes of space dust falls on earth everyday landing on all of us and that precious metals like silver and gold are forged when dead stars collide.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Based on materials I already have and on the curriculum, I chose an enquiry based lesson on meteorites
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wondering : to get them thinking about what is in space and if space material lands on earth.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Exploring : A collection of different rocks. Background knowledge of space and planets using videos and the internet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Starter Question : Which rocks could come from space / be meteorites?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Predicting : Encouraging the children to look at colours, marks, hardness to apply their knowledge of space to their guess.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pick: Encourage the children to explain their choices and record their prediction.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don’t actually have a meteorite but I think leaving it unanswered can be a valuable part of a lesson at times. It can promote curiosity and critical thinking without the focus on correct or incorrect answers. It can encourage the children to look at the world with imagination and to think of the magic in the things around us. Perhaps not very scientific but …It may also introduce the idea of hypothesis. We could develop the lesson by searching for meteorites on the internet and finding out how they were discovered. The connection to the extinction of dinosaurs could also be explored.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #214199
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Niamh,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        an interesting prompt for further investigation linked to this is “where in the world do we find the most meteorites?”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Because many meteorites look a lot like earth rocks, we find them in deserts and the Antarctic, where they stand out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        See this article: https://askanearthspacescientist.asu.edu/finding-meteorites

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        So as a next step, using their knowledge of meterorites, they can look at the map on the site and consider why meteorites were seen to fall in those locations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • #214285

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi my name is Fiona and I teach 2nd class in a Gaelscoil. My favourite space fact/piece of information is often a table quiz question; where is the sea of tranquility? The moon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I would use this question to begin my inquiry-based activity about the moon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I would make use of a KWL chart to determine what the children already know and what would they would like to know as well as recording what they have learnt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My focus for the first lesson on the moon would be laid out as follows;
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
Resources:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      KWL chart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      PowerPoint on the moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Faces of the Moon book
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Black paper and chalk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I would display the question about on the board and ask the class to discuss in their groups.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      When or if someone comes up with the answer I will then ask them to discuss any other facts they know about the moon and to record them on their group kwl chart.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I would then show the class a PowerPoint presentation which introduces the moon; fun facts, short videos and photographs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We would then focus on the facts etc in the PowerPoint and discuss the new information or delve in their previous knowledge about these facts where applicable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The next part of the lesson would focus on what the class would like to know about the moon in future lessons we would undertake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Our final task for the introduction of the moon and prepping for a follow up lesson on the phases of the moon; I would read the book ‘Faces of the Moon’ to the class and ask them to create a piece of art (black paper and chalk) in response to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • #214322
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Profile photo ofFrances.McCarthy@bco.ieFrances McCarthy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Participant

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi Fiona,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          what a lovely book – I haven’t seen it in a while, but when I checked the author’s site I recognised it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.bobcrelin.com/fotmpeek.html

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There is a full teacher guide to it here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Just note that phases of the Moon are not included in the Irish curriculum until Junior Cycle – for primary children should be aware of the Moon, but even in 5th/6th class the emphasis is

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • recognise that the Earth, its moon, the sun, other planets and their satellites are separate bodies and are parts of the solar system

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • develop a simple understanding of the interrelationship of these bodies, including day and night and seasonal movements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          So treat the changing appearance of the Moon as shadows of itself. Misunderstandings of the phases of the Moon are common and discussion around them can be very useful for children to think of the Earth and Moon as objects in space, lit by the Sun, and day and night on the Moon causes it to change appearance for us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Viewing 134 reply threads
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.