ABC Notes for Parents
It is very important that your child attends school every day that they are meant to. Obviously, there will be days that this is not possible, due to mitigating circumstances and sickness. On these days it is imperative that you inform their teacher with the reason for the absence. By law if your child misses 20 days or more, the NEWB (National Educational Welfare Board) must be notified. You will be informed by the Principal if your child is nearing 20 days.
Children will come up with the class rules in class, as part of circle time. These will be taught using Circle Time discussions. The rules will be displayed in the classroom.
Parents will be constantly communicated with and updated regards their children’s behaviours. Any issues that may arise will be dealt with by the class teacher, principal and parent using an agreed and consistent approach.
We will celebrate each birthday with a cake and a little party in class, taking all allergies and dietary requirements into account.
The School Calendar for the school year 2021 / 2022 can be downloaded here.
All parents are encouraged to teach children to put on and take off their own coat, including the zip. It is important to have any removable clothing labelled to avoid it ending up in the spare clothes box!
Collection time is at 1:30pm. If you think you are going to be late please contact the school office at 015240131. (Please note exceptions on the School Calendar)
Communication with class teacher
Your child's class teacher will issue you with an email address that you can contact them on. You may also contact them on Seesaw (see further down this page.)
From time to time the children will be encouraged to bring in items from home relevant to the topic they are doing in class to add to our display tables. Please label everything and send nothing that is valuable to either you or the child! The children should be encouraged to search for the item themselves with your guidance. They will be encouraged to speak about the item that they bring in. The object will remain in school for the duration of the theme.
The school will take great pride in its surroundings. The children are expected to bring home all lunch waste and packaging. They will be responsible for collecting litter, turning off lights and keeping windowsills clear. We will try to be plastic free as much as possible from the beginning.
We would like the children to become independent and manage the equipment that you provide. Give some thought to the items your child needs to get through the school day e.g. shoes, belts, coat fastenings, lunchboxes, bottles and even lunches themselves. It is also important to consider if they can easily undo their trousers/skirts to go to the toilet so accidents can be avoided.
All children need to come to school in footwear that is safe for running in. This is particularly important for the girls who may wear sandals and/or slip on pumps. Wellington boots are not advisable either. Laces are not a good idea unless your child can tie them without assistance. Shoes with Velcro are recommended for all students. The children in Junior Infants will be actively moving for large portions of their school day, so appropriate footwear is essential.
Each child will be given a Homework Folder with their name on it. If, and when, this falls apart it will need to be replaced. It is worth remembering that at this early stage homework shouldn’t seem like a task and should realistically last for 10 – 15 minutes. Homework for Junior Infants will start in November.
Everything that moves needs a label!
We ask that all children have a sectioned lunchbox, so food does not need to be individually wrapped in plastic or tinfoil. Lunches should be in a lunchbox that your child can open and close by themselves. Refillable beakers should also be provided with water only. A beaker or a plastic bottle with a screw cap lid is often a better option. No glass bottles are allowed. From an environmental point of view, we ask that children bring their lunches to school in reusable sectioned lunchboxes and beakers so there is no packaging and plastic waste. It is worth noting that at break time the children will be given 10 minutes to eat and are given a further 10 minutes at lunchtime so small bite size snacks are better than huge big bread rolls and full pieces of fruit. There may be children and staff who have serious allergies so nuts and nut products are banned throughout the school. This also includes chocolate spread, as it often contains hazelnuts.
It is not necessary that your child be able to write his/ her name on arrival into Junior Infants, but it is useful to recognise it for coat and bag hooks. Each child will be given tracing sheets with their names on it to practise on a weekly basis for the first month or so. As all children learn at a different pace some children will be able to write their name sooner than others. This can be practised at home.
Out and About
The consent forms cover any outing that may take place. We hope to go on outings during the year which you will be informed of beforehand.
Parent Teacher Meetings
You will be invited to attend the meeting to discuss your child’s progress. If you have concerns before this, please make an appointment to meet with the teacher before/after school. Parent Teacher meeting are generally conducted in November.
We are always looking for parents to volunteer for all sorts of different activities from furniture assembly and gardening, to website design and sports coaching. Please let us know of anything you are willing to help us with.
It is not necessary in Junior Infants for your child to have a pencil case. Pencils and crayons are provided in Junior Infants only. We use triangular hand hugger pencils which promote proper pencil grip. Please ensure you have stationary and writing tools at home for homework.
Play is used as a methodology for learning in the infant classrooms. Structured play is incorporated into the morning activities. The children will play in pairs and groups working on early mathematical skills, fine motor skills and literacy. Aistear is an approach that allows the children to learn through play. This is primarily child led but within the current theme we are working on. Using the theme the children will be enabled to use and practise their mathematical skills, oral language and writing; widen their understanding of the world through teacher questioning; and work together, learning to listen, take turns, share, make decisions together and compromise when needed!
The children really enjoy meeting up after school. It is up to you as parents to organise these.
The school day starts at 8.50am when the doors are opened. It is imperative that all the children are in the classroom for this time as it is when we begin class time. Children who don’t come to school on time cause disruptions right throughout the school. If a child is late, they often become flustered and distracted and generally start the day on the wrong foot. In the junior classes they also miss out on valuable play time.
We like to go outside, whatever the weather. To facilitate this, we ask that all parents send in a set of rain gear to keep in school .
It is important to establish a good routine early. Check that all items that are needed for school are ready for the morning. Children thrive on routine.
Every child should have a school bag that is big enough to hold their homework folder. Each child will have their own hook for their bag. I would recommend that you constantly check your child’s school bag for letters, flyers and the odd sandwich and/or black banana skin! Toy days are Fridays only. The children are permitted to bring in a small, quiet toy that they may play with during break and lunch times on Fridays only. There are plenty of toys in the infant classroom.
Please keep a copy of the school calendar at home. The school calendar for 2020/2021 can be downloaded here.
We will be using the Seesaw App. Children will learn how to upload photos of their work and play to their Seesaw profile. The class teacher will upload photos and examples of work at least once a week. Parents are asked to download the Seesaw Class app so they can view their child’s profile. Teachers may also send homework suggestions or short video clips using the seesaw app. It is a lovely way to find out what your child did in school and then have a chat about it to promote more oral language at home. This is also the method in which you may contact the teacher.
Seesaw will also be the main method of communication if there are further school closures and we need to engage in distance learning.
Spare change of clothes.
All parents are asked to send in a spare change of clothes which the children can get into themselves.
The children do not wear a school uniform but are encouraged to wear comfortable clothing for all weather and all subjects. Every day is active. We often have dance and PE and all the children should be comfortable enough to participate in these subjects. Think cartwheels! We would suggest that the children avoid wearing ‘good’ clothes especially as they may be involved in art activities such as paint on any given day. The paint that we use generally washes out, but it isn’t a guarantee! Please send in an oversized t shirt at the start of the year.