Welcome to our submission for the Discover Primary Science and Maths award for 2019. This is our first year taking part in the Awards! This year we are applying for the Plaque of STEM Excellence, which is given to schools that carry out extensive work in science, technology, engineering and Maths, all of which are very important in Darrara NS.
We are using our website to submit our award and to link to our activities that have taken part during the year.
Step 1: Science
For this step, we will show one hands-on science investigations under the four different strands which classes explored this year.
Our whole school investigated Bacteria Growth using Agar. We swapped different surfaces around our school. To see some pictures click here.
The senior room explored Human Biology-The Skeleton. Click here to see more.
Environmental Awareness and Care
All classes investigated Irish native Trees with Niamh O’ Flynn from the Heritage Council. For more information click here .
Our whole school enjoyed a nature trail at our beautiful Ring Bay. We investigated the wildlife. Click here to see more pictures.
The junior room enjoyed the creeping colours investigation. They also investigated primary and secondary colours.
Energy and Forces
The senior room enjoyed the floating egg investigation. To see more pictures from this investigation click here.
Senior Infants and First class investigated sinking and floating and designed their own boats.
We celebrated Science Week in our school. Every class enjoyed lots of hands on experiments throughout the week. Click here to see more snapshots of some of the activities enjoyed by all classes.
All classes enjoyed a school visit from local scientist Dr Sorcha Sheehy.
First class and senior infants enjoyed learning about the Science Lab in Aistear. Click here to see more of the fun hands on learning they enjoyed.
Scientist Dr Emma Roycroft and Engineer Mr. Donal Courtney also shared information about their work with the children during Science Week. Click here.
We concluded science week with a whole school science table quiz. Click here to see more about our Science Week Quiz.
Space Week was a big hit in our school this year. The junior room enjoyed learning about space in Aistear. Click here to see some more highlights of this fun filled week.
All classes really enjoyed a Skype with astronomer Cian O’ Regan. Click here for more information.
The senior room explored the planets and constellations during space week.
Step 2: Technology
The pupils of Darrara NS use technology regularly to support their learning and to complete different projects. For this step we will provide two examples of how the children used technology as part of their school work this year.
With interactive whiteboards in all classrooms, a computer area coupled with the recent purchase of a number of laptops and IPads by the school, technology has become a part of every-day life in Darrara NS.
This year, fourth class learned about computer coding, through the Mission Zero project.
Also the children have constructed Eco Blocks this year. This is a design and make project using recycled plastic. Click here to see more about this project and to see a video of an eBook created by a pupil explaining the project
As you can see from our submission we implement technology in our day-to-day teaching and learning, with Maths and Science at the forefront of this.
Step 3: Engineering
For the third step of our application for the DPSM Plaque of STEM Excellence, we took part in Engineering Week in our school. As part of this, engineer Kieran Coffey who featured on the RTE programme Eco Eye visited and spoke to the children about his work . You can read more about his visit to our school here.
The Junior room enjoyed the marshmallow and spaghetti challenge. Click here to read about it on our school blog.
We also used the Enginering Week 2019 classroom pack to learn about all the different types of engineers.
Furthermore, this year we explored the top 10 modern engineering marvels which featured in the Primary Planets.
Step 4: Maths
Our school also took part in Maths Week in October. The children took part in lots of hands on Maths activities and games during Maths Week. The children enjoyed quizzes, Maths stations and group activities.
We also developed a Maths trail around our school using the primaryscience.ie templates. Click here to see more.
The children have also enjoyed using the IZAK9 cubes and working on the interactive challenges. Click here to see further highlights.
Throughout the year the children have be enabled to apply their Maths skills and knowledge as part of others activities. Below is some pictures of the children using these skills in baking and gardening.
Step 5: STEM Showcase
Throughout the year, students have visited other classrooms to show them investigations that they have carried out and to share their findings. Below you will see some picture evidence of the children presenting different STEM work to other classes during the year.
Below you will see sixth class pupils sharing their investigation to the junior room
Below you will see a pupil from third class sharing her classes investigation with the junior classes.
Here is a picture of sixth class pupils sharing their STEM work with the junior room.
We hoped you enjoyed reading our submission!