All posts by Antonia Buckley

Sorting, Comparing and Classifying in Juniors!

In Junior Infants, we have been working hard on sorting, comparing and classifying activities. Come into our classroom and see our efforts on the walls!

There are many websites online which are great for reinforcing learning taught in school.

Here are some suggestions:


Some information on sorting, classifying and comparing (taken from

Highlight one characteristic in a large group of items. Once your child is familiar with the basic concept of grouping items together based on a common characteristic, introduce a large group of two items that differ in only one key attribute. For example, you may give your child a bowl of two cereals that have different colors but the same shape (Kix and Cocoa Puffs or Fruit Loops and Apple Jacks) and direct him to sort them according to the color. Or, you could give your child a group of salad and dinner forks and ask him to sort them according to size. Naming the defining characteristic for your child (such as color or size) will help guide your child in this beginning sorting activity.

Set out two empty bowls next to the large pile of items, which will give your child the clue that he needs to sort the pile of items into only two different groups. To help him get started, pick one item from the pile and put it in the first bowl and pick a second (different) item and put it in the second bowl.

Ask leading questions. After you have sorted two of the items into different bowls, pick up a third item and hand it to your child. As he examines it, ask him, “Which bowl does that one go in?” After your child has made his choice, ask him why he picked the bowl that he did.

As your child explains his classification method, encourage him to use descriptive words that refer to the item’s color, shape, size, texture, or whatever the defining characteristic happens to be. If your child incorrectly sorted the item, call his attention to the defining attribute (color, size, etc.) and let him try again to put the piece in the correct bowl.

Introduce more characteristics. When your child is comfortable sorting objects based on an obvious characteristic (such as color), challenge him to sort a more diverse group of items.

With a larger group of items, your child will need to make a decision about which characteristic to use to define the groups. For instance, you could have a group of blocks in two different sizes and two different colors. Your child will need to decide whether color or size will be the determining factor when sorting into two groups. Buttons are great for this purpose since they have two or four holes, come in a variety of colors, can be made of wood, metal or plastic, and can be square, circular or oblong. Also, buttons are sold inexpensively and in bulk at most craft or fabric stores.

As your child begins sorting the items into two different bowls, encourage him to discuss his reasoning behind each decision. Did he choose to sort based on color and put all red buttons in one bowl and all the remaining buttons in a different bowl?  Or is he putting all circular buttons in one bowl and all the oddly shaped buttons in a different bowl?  As your child articulates his sorting method, he will be honing important analytical and expressive reasoning skills.

When your child has finished sorting all the items, consider asking him to re-sort the same group of items in a different way. For example, if he initially sorted the items by size, he could sort by color or texture when sorting the same items again. Since your child already sorted the items correctly one time, re-sorting them a second time will be an added challenge.

Incorporate sorting into everyday activities. Everyday activities present wonderful opportunities for sorting. As you fold laundry, ask your child to sort his clean clothes into three piles – shirts, pants and underwear. Or, when cleaning up at the end of the day, ask him to sort his toys into two bins based on a particular characteristic such as noisy toys in one bin and quiet toys in another or rolling toys (vehicles and balls) in one bin and non-rolling toys (stuffed animals and puzzles) in another.

For older children, try the same sorting activities but do not give your child guidance about how to sort the specific items. Perhaps he will sort the clothes into the obvious groups by putting the pants in one pile and the shirts in another. Or he could sort them by color or by daytime vs. nighttime wear. When your child is done sorting, look at his piles with him and ask him to explain his reasoning to you.

Science Foundation Ireland Discover Science & Maths Award

We are delighted to announce that all our hard work has paid off!

Limerick School Project National School has achieved a Science Foundation Ireland Discover Science and Maths Plaque of STEM Excellence for the 2015/16 academic year.

Huge congratulations to all the pupils for their participation in the activities and lessons throughout the year.

We will receive our plaque for display in mid-June.

An Nuacht – 15th January 2015


Volume 15, Issue 18

January 15th 2015

Our photograph above was taken by a Limerick Leader photographer, he came to see the primary school that stayed open after Storm Rachel! We are made from strong stuff in LSP!

Christmas jumper for Charity day

The School Council are delighted to announce that they raised €395 on the Christmas jumper for Charity day. Everyone wore a Christmas jumper and donated €2 to the charity. The charity chosen by the school council is Enable Ireland Children’s services in Limerick and we will arrange to pass on the money soon.

LSP 25th Anniversary Concert

Everyone is working hard preparing for the Magic of the Musicals show on the 17th and 18th February 2015.

All children will be performing on both nights and will be supervised by school staff on both nights so parents can watch the show. We will arrange drop off times and collection times nearer the date.

We hope to sell as many tickets as possible and hope that every family will come to see their child/ children on one of the nights.

Please spread the word as we’d love to see past pupils and parents back to see the show.

Tickets  are on sale now from the Belltable and the Lime Tree Theatre box office

We have a date for the 25th Anniversary LSP past pupils reunion. It will be on Saturday 18th April 2015 in Dolan’s on the Dock road. We will put more details on the website nearer the date.

 Can you please ensure that we have correct phone number for your child/ren on file.

LSP Parent Teacher Association News

The PTA would like to welcome everyone back to a new term at LSP.  The committee had its first meeting of the year this week and at that meeting the figures for the Winter Fair were finalised.  We are excited to announce that the amount of money raised by the fair was €3,700. This demonstrates both how successful the fair was and the level of commitment and engagement by the school community with the fair. The money will be used to fund extracurricular activities and events for the school community over the rest of the year.  With that in mind we would like to outlay some of the events that we will be organising over the coming months:

The PTA has arranged Tai Chi classes for all the children at LSP . A Tai Chi instructor will attend the school and classes will commence the end of February, and run for 8 weeks. More information on this event will be posted in February.

The PTA will contribute €1000 from moneys raised towards classroom resources.

As part of the 25th year celebrations, the PTA will be organising a “Yard Party” for the children.  This will take place in June (date to be confirmed) and will be run during regular school time.  More information on this event will be posted nearer the date.

The school is organising “the Magic of the Musicals” concert where all classes will perform on stage at the Limetree Theatre 17th/18th February – Tickets for the event can be bought from the Limetree website.  The PTA’s contribution will be organising the programme for the event and also running a raffle on both nights.

The Plant and Cake Spring Fair will be held in mid-May (date to be confirmed).

Two further coffee mornings will be held between now and the end of the school year. The next one takes place on the 6th of February from 8.30am outside the staff room. Coffee mornings are open to the whole school community and we would encourage people to come along.  It is a great opportunity to chat with other parents, chat to the committee and also have a nice cup of coffee/tea.

The PTA has commenced a project looking at the school yard and the possible ways of making it a more engaging space for the children.  With that in mind, workshops will be run with the children to get some insight into how they view the yard and their ideas as to how the yard could be enhanced as an activity space.

The PTA committee will hold an open meeting for parents / guardians at its next committee meeting on the 9th February in the staff room of the LSP.  This is an opportunity for parents/guardians to bring an idea for an event, to raise/bring an issue they are concerned about, ask a question, or simply get to know the committee.  The time of this meeting will be announced nearer the date.