Junior Infants are learning all about Spring in Science and Geography this month. We are so blessed to be able to look out our classroom window and see the budding signs of Spring. There are daffodils, snowdrops, crocuses and lots more starting to appear. We decided that instead of looking out the window, we put on our coats and set off on a Spring walk.
We explored the natural environment around St. Clare’s and got to see all of the Spring flowers. Some of the flowers were in the early stages of growth and some had already blossomed. Looking at all the new flowers and all the colours brought us such joy. We even got an extra surprise when Kevin brought us to see some tadpoles. There were tadpoles hiding in the pond in one of our smaller garden areas in St. Clare’s. It was so much fun taking our learning experience outside and watching nature first hand.
We constructed a Geodesic Dome in class. First, we made 3D structures using toothpicks and Plasticine to see which structure would be the strongest to use. We found that triangular structures worked best. We made lots of triangles using rolled newspaper and taped them together. We had to make sure that each one was the same length. We attached an oxygen supply to our Dome. We found out lots of fun facts about life on the moon!
Equipment- 3 balloons, 3 straws, plastic bottle, scissors, glue and sellotape. (Rubber Glove)
- Cut plastic bottle in half using scissors.
- Cut straws and glue together.
- Secure balloon to end of each straw with tape.
- Make hole in lid and put straw through and secure.
- Cut other balloon in half and tape to the bottom of bottle.
Result- When we pulled the balloon at the bottom of the bottle it did not work. We replaced it with a rubber glove. When we pulled the glove down the balloons expanded.
Conclusion- When we breathe (inhale) the diaphragm pulls down making the chest expand. This causes air to be sucked into the lungs. When the diaphragm relaxes the air is pushed out of the lungs (exhale).
This year in 6th class for the RDS Science Blast we decided to investigate pulley systems. First we made a single fixed pulley system but discovered that it made no difference to the weight. Then we made a multiple fixed pulley system. We calculated that there was a mechanical advantage of 1.8 with this method. Next we made a multiple pulley system using a movable pulley and a fixed pulley. This had the biggest mechanical advantage 3. Finally we wanted make a structure used in everyday life so we decided on a crane. We made the crane out of modelling wood and used 3 fixed pulleys and 1 moveable pulley. We also made a handle out of an old pencil which attaches to the pulleys and makes the crane work when you wind it. We really enjoyed doing this project.
This year our class entered the Intel Mini Scientist Competition and our group was lucky enough to be selected to go to the Regional Finals. Our group’s topic was hydraulics, more specifically hydraulic bridges. We chose this topic because last year two people from our
group went to the previous regional final and three other groups did hydraulic arms and we had an interest in the science behind hydraulics. We decided to investigate hydraulic bridges.
At first we found it very difficult to construct the bridge and came across quite a few problems but after a while we figured it out. In November three judges from Intel came in and judged all the classes’ projects. Our group was lucky enough to be selected to go to the Regional Final! In preparation for the Regional Final we decided to make another bridge out of balsa wood. In December our group went to Blanchardstown IT and after a long day of presenting we made it to the National Finals in Maynooth. We were delighted when we found out we were in the top 1% in Ireland. Then the awards were announced but unfortunately we didn’t we win anything but were still extremely proud of ourselves.
In Ms. Ryan’s 1st Class we investigated different materials to see which ones were waterproof. We used Buster the puppet to help us. We predicted if the following materials were waterproof; rubber, cotton, nylon, plastic and tin-foil. We recorded our predictions.
We tested the materials by wrapping a piece of each one around Buster’s arm. Buster’s arm was dipped into the water for thirty seconds each time. We then checked to see if his arm was wet or dry. If his arm was dry it showed us that the material was waterproof. Sadly, poor Buster got wet when we tested the cotton, nylon and tin-foil as these are not waterproof. We would not recommend using these materials when making a raincoat.
Sound is an energy, caused by vibrations that makes sound waves.
We completed a dancing rice experiment to see sound vibrations. We made ‘String telephones’ to hear sound waves.
We investigated which material would be the best sound insulator. We measured how far away from the sound we needed to walk before the sound disappeared when blocked by each material. We predicted that the cardboard box would be the best sound insulator and we were right!
Some materials allow sound to pass through them easily. Other materials absorb sound.