DPS Science and Field Trip


1. Electricity

Activity: To learn how to power a light bulb and to explore how we could make it brighter.

Strand: Energy and Forces

Date: 28th of November 2016

Description: In groups of two, the pupils in Mr.Doyle’s class worked together to light a light bulb with only one or two batteries and a lead to connect them.

Also the partnership worked together to make a buzzer start and stop with only a battery and a lead.

As you can see from our pictures, if two batteries are used the bulb becomes brighter than the circuit which has only has one battery. 

2. Igloos

Activity: We had to choose a suitable material to use for building mini igloos as part of our Arctic theme in January.

Strand: Materials

Date: 19th January 2017

Description: In January the Aistear theme for the Junior room was ‘ The Arctic’. We spent a few weeks learning about Inuit people, Arctic animals, life in the Arctic and Arctic homes during our SESE lessons. We were very interested in igloos as we watched a video showing us how they are built. We wanted to try it our for ourselves so we decided to give it a go! It was very important to chat about what kind of material to use. We knew we needed a material that was light and could be easily shaped like the crusted snow we saw in the video. We talked about different materials we had used for construction in the past like cardboard, potters clay, paper or sticks. We felt these materials would not help us to create the dome shape we were looking for. In the end decided to use air dough which is a light weight modelling dough. We found that the air dough could be easily shaped into small cubes to be stacked at an angle. We soon discovered this is a very important thing to remember – always angle the blocks so they lean in as you build up!

3.  Colour-Spinning Wheel

Activity: This year, the senior classroom made colour-spinning wheels, to see if we spun all the colours of the rainbow together fast enough would they all turn white. This activity was a small part of a project where we were learning about light.

We learned that sunlight – white light – can be broken up into the colours of the rainbow, so we wanted to see could we mix the colours together to turn them back into white light

Strand: Energy and Forces

Date: 02/ February /2017


4. Planting Vegetables ??

Activity: Junior Infants to 6th Class planted carrots, lettuce and beetroot

Strand: Living Things

Date: 27th March 2017

Sixth class went outside and they set up with plants, trowels, compost , topsoil and water.  Then in groups of four, Junior Infants to 2nd Class came out and were helped by the sixth class to plant seeds in little plant pots. The sixth class helped them plant the seeds in pots some planted beetroot and lettuce but most of the people planted carrots.
Afterwards the boys from fifth class came out and took over the job.
After all the seeds were planted we nominated a person to water the plants each day.

5. Food Webs

Activity: To see how all of our local species of plants and animals are connected and rely on each other to survive.

Strand: Living Things


Description: We learned about food chains, and drew simple chains in 3rd – 6th Class. Then we looked at food webs where we saw that lots of species are connected to others in many different ways. Then we printed out cards, each one with a different local plant or creature printed on them. We also had one card with the sun printed on it. You can see Max in the middle of the food web in the picture above holding the ‘sun’ card. We learned that all energy for plants and animals comes firstly from the sun, then is passed on to the plants (producers) and from there up the chain to herbivores and carnivores.

We really enjoyed this activity and saw clearly how plants and animals are all connected together.

 6. How do plants drink?

Activity: How does the water plants drink travel to all parts of the plant?

Strand: Living Things

Date:  4th April 2017

In the Junior room we learned to name the parts of a flower, we found out what all plants need to grow and finally we planted our seeds in the school garden.  The children then wanted to know ‘how do the plants ‘drink’ the water once they start to grow?’. To answer this question, first we made predictions, then we set about testing our predictions. We decided to investigate using a vegetable, a flower, water and food colouring. In groups, we put celery and carnations into jars, vases or jugs of water. We then added some food colouring and waited to see what happened! The next day at school we looked at the results and found that the celery and carnations had turned red and blue – all the way from the stem up to the petals on the carnations! When we looked closely at the celery, we could see thin little tubes which the dye had travelled through. We had our result! We discovered there are little tubes inside the plant which let the water travel through to all parts of the plant.


7. Magnets

Activity: In the Junior room we used magnets to find out what kind of materials are attracted to them. We then wondered, ‘which of our magnets  is the strongest?’ 

Strand: Energy and forces

Date: 27th April 2017

Description: In the Junior room we took a large collection of magnets and checked to see which materials ‘stuck’ to the magnets. We discovered that magnets stick to metals like steel and iron. We also found out that small magnets can be stronger than big magnets! After we had searched our classroom for metals we then wanted to know which of the magnets was strongest. Darragh in 2nd class suggested we do a test using our magnets and some paper clips. He explained to the other classes that we could hold the magnet over the box of clips and that the magnet holding the most clips must be the strongest! We decided that to keep the test fair we would all use the same box of paperclips but each person would have a different magnet. Emily in Junior Infants had the weakest magnet which only attracted one clip and her sister Eva in 1st Class had the strongest magnet which held 76 clips! Senior Infants then created a poster to inform the children in the Senior room about our findings. During the Science Fair the four girls from Senior infants presented the results to the senior classes.

Visit to Castlecomer Discovery Park.

In Castlecomer Discovery park our tour guide walked us through the coal exhibition. Castlecomer back in the eighteen hundreds to the nineteen sixties had a big coal mine which employed thousands of people. Our tour guide explained to us that coal takes 320 million years to form. She also told us that if you take a piece of coal in your hand and look back 320 million years you would have a plant or animal in your hand. Coal and other fossil fuels make up the majority of electricity productions. Coal is used in many different ways like heating your home and making electricity but it is bad for the environment releasing co2 when burnt.
The River

Our tour guide brought us down to the River Dinin where we were given sieves to collect insects that live in the river. When we caught the insects we put them in white trays and at the end our tour guide gave us some sheets to help us detect the insects we found. The sheet also separated the insect into non polluted, slightly polluted and very polluted. Luckily the river was non-polluted which we were all glad of.