The Joys of Spring, Fourth Class, St. James’s P.S.

Fourth class, teacher Mariessa Harvey asked that we integrating themes from the Spring curriculum through print and construction during our seven sessions.The children began by looking at Irish birds. We looked at their shapes, and patterns from photographs on the Internet. Some children were a bit under confident when asked to draw a bird but they were given plenty of paper to try out different bird drawings before deciding which one to make a monoprint from.

Each group of children at a table had a different colour to begin their print with and then they swopped colours so they could make a multicoloured print.


Multicoloured Bird Prints

Pattern Prints

Using soft foam from a yoga mat and cardboard the children created print blocks. The foam can be cut into the required shapes and patterns engraved into it using a sharp pencil. We discussed shapes and patterns from the theme Spring. Blocks had the texture and shapes of grass, flowers feathers etc.


The children folded their paper into rectangles to help make a repeat pattern with their blocks. For practical reasons each table had one colour of ink, the children chose paper to contrast with the ink colour.


Collage birds

The children used their prints to create collage birds. They experimented with paper first trying folds, curls, tearing etc.


Bird Houses.


Materials – Recycled objects and cardboard boxes.

We spent time first thinking about what is a bird house and what would a bird need in his house. We had a look at bird houses on the Internet. I laid out lots of materials. The children chose to work in pairs groups or individually. They learnt a lot about measuring as they had been doing this in maths and now they could use their rulers to measure for their constructions.


We took one session to build the structure and a second session to add colour and pattern with paint and collage. When they were finished we took them into the school garden and each child or group chose a site for their birdhouse.



Ms. Harvey brought in a beautiful nest that had been abandoned by it’s birds a few year ago. We all admired it and looked at the eggs inside it. The children made up their own nests and decorated polystyrene eggs using tissue paper.


We invited parents and guardians in for the final session.  There was a lovely display in the corridor and classroom of the children’s work. We showed a slideshow of all the work the class have been doing and how it was done.

Then the children and adults worked together on soft sculptures of birds. The session had to be shorted than usual as there was other things happening in the school for the children but despite this they managed to make paper patterns for their birds, pin them on the fabric, sew them, turn them inside out and stuff them.

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