Myself is always my first topic in September. I have found that because there is so much that is familiar to the children, it is comforting to new Junior Infants coming in. They can easily relate to themselves and their family and are familiar with the concept of a home corner.
Our home corner is simple and the children love to roleplay as mammy and daddy. It is closely linked to our traditional tale of Goldilocks And The Three Bears which we always cover in September.
There are so many versions of the traditional tales but this version of Goldilocks (and the other tales), by Mara Alperin, is my absolute favourite! We have loads of other versions of the story which we explore over the course of the topic too but the children also love this one the most! We also love to sing the Goldilocks song from YouTube!
A very important skill for Infants to work on is sequencing and once you have put in the groundwork with the story itself, the children should be comfortable to sequence a few pictures of the story independently! Towards the end of our topic, and after reading a few stories a number of times as well as learning the song, the class are generally very good at sequencing a very large number of pictures and then using the pictures to retell the story!
All About Me
We learn all about ourselves in September and part of that involves learning our body parts. There are lots of songs and poems you can do with the children such as ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes’ which are great fun! We also love to play bingo and this body parts bingo is a handy game to play to introduce games with rules as well as to reinforce the body parts. It’s also great if you are doing an corp as Gaeilge or if you are working with EAL children to learn body parts! You can click here to download it for free!
As we all get to know each other activities which encourage the children to talk about themselves are not only helpful for the teacher but are helpful for the other children as they make connections too! Art activities where the children represent themselves are a really nice way to help the children settle into their new environment and encourage them to express themselves. You can check out our paper plate faces craft idea by clicking here!
Learning that we are all unique and special is an important message for children and they can never learn it too early! This little poem is a wonderful SPHE activity to complete in September! You can click here to download it for free!
One of the most important things for each child to start learning in September is to write their name. Lots of children will come to school already writing it, some will master it in September and others will take longer! One of my favourite writing aids to help children to write their names is to use traceable templates.
Highlighters are always a huge hit with small children! Simply write their names in highlighter and have them trace over it in pencil. This is really easy to write on worksheets, pieces of art etc for children who need the support and allows them to still write their name independently! And its much quicker than dots!
Another option is to print worksheets that children can use to practice their names! A shaded version for them to trace, or download a dotted font such as ‘KG Primary Dots’ to make quick and easy worksheets. Use these sheets in a reusable pocket to save printed them over and over!