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Alexandra College

Junior School News 13 November 2020

Dates for your Diary

Nov. 16 – 27       Parent Teacher Meetings (KGLr –J6) on Zoom

Friday 20          STEAM Challenge 2020 - Final


From the Office

Food Collection:

The Student Council is organising a food collection for the Capuchin Day Centre. We are asking that every child brings in at least one item by Thursday, 26 November. There are boxes in every classroom. The food will be picked up on Friday 27 November.

Items needed: tea bags, sugar, canned food (veg/fruit/beans), pasta, rice, grains, biscuits.


Internet Safety Talk

There was a great turnout for the recent webinar on online safety given by Ger Brick. The class workshops for the J4-J6 girls were very informative too. Thank you to JACA for funding these events for the Junior School. Thank you also to Ms. McGarry for organising the talks and webinar and making sure that they ran smoothly on both days.


STEAM Logo Competition Winners!

1st place: Saoirse Jones J5R

2nd place: Lorinne Poynton Monteiro J6W

3rd place: Evie Daunt Brennan J5R


Highly Commended

Penelope Kirk J3W

Emily Mullan J4W

Lucy McFeely J6W


Saoirse was the overall winner and her logo will be printed on to a hoodie, put on our new STEAM website and the other girls will get tee-shirts. Well done to all of these girls!

1st Place - Saoirse Jones (J5R)

 2nd Place - Lorinne Poynton Monteiro (J6W)

3rd Place - Evie Daunt Brennan (J5R)

Highly Commended

Penelope Kirk (J3W)                 Lucy McFeely (J6W)         Emily Mullan (J4W)

Young Scientists in Preschool! 

Preschool Lower

This week is Science Week and in Preschool Lower we decided to incorporate weather activities into our science explorations. We started by discussing different types of weather and what our favourite weather is. For our first experiment we learnt how a cloud fills up with moisture which eventually turns into rain and falls to the ground. We put water in a jar and added shaving foam to represent the clouds. We added a few drops of blue food colouring and watched as it made its way through the shaving foam and into the clear water in the jar. We also learnt about wind and used a variety of objects and a hair dryer to see which objects were blown about by the warm air. We made rainbows from skittles and warm water and created an amazing snow blizzard using water, white paint, glitter and Alka seltzer tablets stirred together in a jar. On Thursday we discussed heat and the sun. We left ice cubes in the fridge, outside, by the radiator and held it in our hands to observe how long it took to melt.

Science Week has been a lot of fun. We read lots of stories based around different types of weather, listened to wind and blizzard sounds on our whiteboard, acquired some new facts and weather vocabulary and made some lovely weather art. Weather is a topic we will continue to expand on throughout the year.

Ms. Brandon & Ms. Malseed


Preschool Upper

The Preschool girls were thrilled to conduct three science experiments this week. The first experiment was the Sinking and Floating Experiment. In this experiment we set up a sinking and floating learning tray and the children were invited to play, experiment and explore how and why different objects float and sink when placed in water.

Secondly the girls observed how a plane actually stays in the air. We conducted an experiment with a hair dryer and a ping pong ball. The ping-pong ball stayed within the column of air coming from the hair dryer because of air pressure. The air coming from the hair dryer moved faster than the air around it, and this meant that it also has a lower air pressure than the air around it.  This was the same concept as an aeroplane flying in the sky. The children were fascinated with this experiment and it enabled them to think beyond the wings of a plane. They loved holding the hair dryer and watching the ping pong ball go higher in the air.

The final experiment we conducted in the Preschool room was with magnets. The children observed that magnets don't act like most objects. If you try to push the south poles together, they repel each other. Two north poles also repel each other. But turn one magnet around and the North and South Poles are attracted to each other. The girls were then presented with a magnet and had great fun identifying that iron, nickel and cobalt are attracted to magnets. When they experimented with material, plastic and seeds they did not have a magnetic attraction. The girls really enjoyed this experiment. The final experiment we did  was the experiment demonstrating that skittles are coated in food colouring and sugar. When you pour water over the skittles the coloured coating dissolves spreading through the water. The colour and sugar dissolve into the water and then diffuse through the water, making it the colour of the skittle. The children were so excited doing this experiment.

Well done, girls, for a very exciting Science Week!

Ms. Murphy and Ms. Moran



Scientists at Work Around the Junior School



Alex STEAM Challenge 2020

Unfortunately due to Covid-19, the annual Intel Mini Scientist competition could not go ahead this year. In order to keep the spirit of the competition alive, we hosted our own internal and online event - the first Alex STEAM Competition 2020. Our aim is to keep the competition quite similar to the Intel Mini Scientist competition. As it takes an online format, we  modified the guidelines accordingly. We will ask an independent judge to view the girls' presentations and award first, second and third prizes as before. As we cannot use the JS Gym to present to a judge, each class presented to the camera.

KG-J2: Each group made a  class video, max 4 minutes

J3 - J6: Individual/small group videos, max 1.5 minutes each

All of the videos were collated this week and we intend to host the videos on Google Sites. This will allow the videos to be viewed easily by the judges, other students and parents. The winner(s) will be announced on Friday, 20 November.

You will be sent a link next week so that you can view all of the projects.

Ms. McGarry (eLearning/STEAM Coordinator)


J2R All About Ireland

On Friday, 13th November, J2R performed an assembly about Ireland. The girls presented facts about the geography of Ireland such as:

  • Ireland is an island which means that it is completely surrounded by water
  • We have the Irish Sea to the east of Ireland and the Atlantic Ocean to the West of Ireland
  • Ireland has 4 provinces which are Ulster, Munster, Leinster and Connaught
  • There are 32 counties in the whole of Ireland, there are 26 counties in the Republic of Ireland and 6 counties in Northern Ireland
  • The capital city of Ireland is Dublin which is in the province of Leinster
  • The Irish flag is green, white and orange and the green part is always placed nearest the flagpole
  • Our nearest neighbour to the west is America and the United Kingdom is to the east of Ireland
  • The national language of Ireland is Irish, but English and many other languages are also spoken here
  • The harp is a symbol of Ireland and it appears on the back of our coins
  • Michéal Martin is the Taoiseach of Ireland and Leo Varadkar is the Tánaiste and they run the government from the Dáil
  • The President of Ireland is called Michael D. Higgins and he lives in Áras an Uachtaráin in the Phoenix Park

We created colourful posters and decorated shamrocks. We enjoyed rehearsing our assembly and presenting it to the school on Zoom. We learned a lot about our country and we liked writing a class prayer to finish our performance. Well done, J2R!

Aisling Gorry

J2R Class Teacher



Kg Lower, Kg Upper and J1 

Family Group Work

Last term, the Kindergarten Department really enjoyed Family Group Work, on the theme of 'Life Cycles'. Whilst learning more about all kinds of life cycles we became experts in butterflies, frogs and chickens and the girls made very creative responses. Well done everyone, lovely work! 

In ‘preparation’ for the festive and special celebration ahead, our next Family Group Work, will be based upon the theme of ‘Preparing’. We look forward to our work about Advent, Giving Thanks and The Nativity. We approach our Christmas preparations and plans with great anticipation and excitement and look forward to telling you more about our projects this term...