Ard Scoil na nDéise Mini-company Craft Fair
On Wednesday, 11th December the Transition Year Enterprise classes held the annual Christmas Craft Fair in the school hall. The Craft Fair is an opportunity for our Transition Year mini-companies to showcase the products that they are selling or have produced and give staff and students an opportunity to start their Christmas shopping and stock up on their innovative products! Jonathan Earl form Waterford Local Enterprise Office visited the Craft Fair on the day and identified four mini-companies who will now go on to represent Dungarvan shortly in the County Final. The four mini-companies going forward are:
- Solas producing handmade Christmas decorations
- Farbspur producing hand painted bookmarks
- Turn it Green producing kits containing reusable items to reduce plastic waste and the use of single use products
- Mimmy producing kits containing personal hygiene essentials for girls
We were delighted to see the amount of effort that had been put in by all of the students and it was hard to pick out just four companies to go forward to the County Final. It was also wonderful to see such a focus on reusable products and products that will make a positive impact on the environment. Well done to all involved and well done to Ms. Gleeson and Ms. Foley for all of their work mentoring the girls as they prepared for this event.
Ard Scoil na nDéise participation in the BT Young Scientist Exhibition
This year Fifth Year students Martha Ryan and Oliwia Pawlikowska qualified for the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in Dublin. Here is an account of their involvement in the exhibition.
Out of 2,000 entries we were one of the 550 projects selected to be part of the exhibition. We were also the first project from the Ard Scoil to qualify for the competition. Our project was entitled ‘Case Study of the Behaviour of Freshwater Algae in Acidic Conditions’. We investigated the potential effects of acid rain on algae from our local lakes. As algae are the basis of most aquatic eco-systems they are a good indicator of how other organisms would fare in acidic conditions. We started our project in October and worked up to the last week of December. We came to the conclusion that our studied algae cannot survive in a pH value of below 5.5.
Being in Fifth Year, it was a lot of work on top of schoolwork. However, it completely paid off as we had an incredible few days at the exhibition. We arrived on Wednesday and following an opening ceremony with special guests Brian Cox and Leo Varadkar, the competition commenced. We got judged by several judges over the few days and became more confident every time. It was great to see that sixty percent of the projects on display were done by females and sixty percent were on climate related topics. As two students who wish to pursue careers in STEM it was a really inspiring and interesting event. Also, a big thanks to our science teacher Ms. Brosnan who helped us throughout the project.
Written by Martha Ryan and Oliwia Pawlikowska
Student trip to the BT Young Scientist Exhibition
On Thursday, 9th January, First, Fifth and Transition Year students from our school travelled up to the RDS to the BT Young Scientist Exhibition to support two Fifth Year students, Martha Ryan and Oliwia Pawlikowska, who were taking part in the competition.
This is the first year our school has had an entry in this prestigious competition. Martha and Oliwia’s project focused on the behaviour of freshwater algae in acidic conditions. Their display showed months of dedication and hard work and they did the school proud.
When we arrived into the main exhibition hall, we had the opportunity to walk around and look at other projects. The standard of projects was very high and was a testament to what a great achievement it was for an entry from our school to participate.
After a few hours at the exhibition, we returned home after the tiring yet interesting day. It was a valuable learning opportunity for us and we all found in very enjoyable.
Written by Jennifer Cronnolly
Cross Country. Ard Scoil Na nDéise claims best overall prize three years in a row!
The Post Primary Schools County Cross Country Championships were held in St Augustine’s College on the 15th January. It was a great day for the Ard Scoil, who claimed best overall girls school for the third year in a row. Both the Senior and the Intermediate teams claimed gold team prizes. Lucy Holmes led the senior team home finishing in first place individually. The senior team was made up of Lucy Holmes, Mary Kate Prendergast, Kate Hickey and Elia Tutty.
We had two Ard Scoil athletes in the top three in the Intermediate race, with Sarah Nyhan in first place and Caoimhe Prendergast in third place. Well done to Sarah Nyhan, Caoimhe Prendergast, Eve Dwyer, Anna Hickey, Emma Hickey, Millie Lucey, Aoibh Murphy and Mairead Hickey who were clear winners of the intermediate team prize. Our Minor and Junior teams just missed out on third place but all ran excellently on the day.
Best of luck to our athletes, who now go on to the East Munsters, which will be held in Carriganore on January 31st.
Table Quiz in aid of St. Vincent de Paul
On Monday the thirteenth of January, 2B CSPE class held a quiz in Árd Scoil Na nDéise, in conjunction with students from the CBS. It was held in the junior hall at 2:20 pm until 3:30 pm. Everyone paid two euro to take part in the quiz. It was a great success, and we raised €230 for the St. Vincent de Paul Society. It was a wonderful experience and we hope to do another similar fundraiser in the future.
Written by Aliya McCarey
Transition Year Ice-skating Trip
On Tuesday, 14th January, our year set off to Cork on Ice to go ice skating. When we arrived at the ice rink, we were given our skates and after struggling to get them on and stand up; we carefully stumbled onto the ice. For some, it was their first time ice skating but we were in the good hands of the staff at the ice rink who showed us how to correctly skate and assisted the people who fell on the ice. Some people did fall on the ice but we were lucky no one was injured and anyone who fell was eager to get back on the ice again. After an hour of skating, we put our own shoes back on and set off to Mahon Point Shopping Centre. We had roughly an hour for shopping and to get our lunch before returning home for the end of school. It was a really fun trip and a nice break from our busy TY schedule.
Written by Jennifer Cronnolly
Transition Year Students at iWish Exhibition in Cork
Last Thursday, we set off to Cork for the iWish Exhibition in City Hall. iWish is an organisation that aims to inspire women to enter the field of STEM and help create opportunities for women in this already male-dominated field. Every year since 2015, iWish has held an exhibition in Cork and Dublin to empower and inspire young girls.
When we arrived in Cork, we had an hour to go shopping and get our lunch. Then we went into City Hall. The first half of the event was a variety of interesting talks from esteemed speakers about STEM. Sinead Kennedy from Winning Streak was the MC for the day and we were addressed by Ciara Revins from RedFM, two of the founders of iWish, Tánaiste Simon Coveney and a commandant from the Irish Defence Forces. There was also a very interesting panel of four women all working in STEM discussing their experiences in the field.
After the talks, we had an hour to walk around the Exhibition Room. There were an abundance of stalls from companies like Dell, Stryker and Johnson & Johnson. The people at the stalls talked about their experience working in STEM and what courses they would have done in college to get their jobs. It was a really helpful experience hearing from people in these jobs. We also got loads of gifts such as metal straws from Dell. The exhibition was really interesting and everyone learned a lot.
The iWish Exhibition was a valuable experience for everyone and piqued a lot of peoples’ interest in STEM. It was a really fun trip and one of the highlights of Transition Year so far.
Written by Jennifer Cronnolly
2B History Class Visit to Dungarvan Museum
On Monday, January 27th the 2B history class paid a visit to Dungarvan museum. The class was given a tour of the museum and learned about the history of the town during the famine and civil war. The class was brought to the museum to help get ideas and prepare for the upcoming history Classroom Based Assessment about the ‘past in my place.’ Overall it was a really fun visit and we all learned a lot about our local area. Thanks very much to Tony for showing us around and even letting us try on some of the artifacts!
Written by Rebecca Murtagh
Another Jam Packed ‘Minding Me Week’ in Ard Scoil na nDéise!
We have just finished celebrating another very successful ‘Minding Me Week’ in Ard Scoil na nDéise. Our focus throughout the duration of this event was to give our students strategies and techniques to look after themselves physically and mentally. There was a focus on skill development in these areas over a number of weeks in the hopes that at the end of this timeframe our students would be better equipped to take care of their physical and mental wellbeing. The event was organised by Transition Year students under the guidance of Ms. Gleeson and Ms. O’Shea. Here is what some of our Transition Year students had to say about their involvement in the activities.
Our group created a “Guess the teacher” quiz. There were seven people in the group. We made a list of questions for the teachers. Then we gathered their answers and created a poster for both the Junior and Senior building. This was an enjoyable activity for us and our fellow students. It was a good way to get to know our teachers better. We made regular announcements on the intercom and we also had to correct the answer slips and give the prizes to the winners.
Our group organised a quiz for First and Second years. The main aim was to promote mental health awareness and educate them in a fun and active way through the quiz. The quiz questions were mostly based around mental health along with an upbeat music round to bring some enthusiasm into the activity. We tried to ensure they learned something about mental health without having to read about it in a book. We got positive feedback from the First and Second years who took part and we were happy to know they enjoyed it. We also organised a daily quiz which encouraged people to participate and educate themselves on mental health issues.
We chose to create Mental Illness Awareness posters as a project for Minding Me Week. We chose this because we believe it is an important issue to inform people properly on these mental illnesses. Rather than focusing on positive aspects of Minding Me Week, we decided to raise awareness to the lifestyles of someone suffering with a mental illness, such as OCD, Depression, Anxiety, DID, Schizophrenia, Paranoia, Bipolar, PTSD and Addiction. We focused on symptoms, misconceptions, tips, defining what the mental illness means, and helplines.
For minding me week, our group organised a non-uniform day for Blue Monday. Therefore, we made posters and made an announcement over our school intercom to raise awareness of the day and to notify people about Blue Monday and that they were allowed to wear their own clothes. Then we collected the money for the charity ‘Youth Suicide Prevention Ireland’. Following this, we arranged different activities linked to mindfulness and exercise for the first and second years to show them how exercise can improve your mood. These activities included ‘Just Dance’, a walk, a group game and a sense awareness exercise.
Our group put positive quotes on student lockers and classroom doors. The reason behind putting positive quotes on the lockers was to inspire students and teachers to try to be positive throughout the week and for it to be a constant reminder to be happy throughout each day. Each individual quote had a different meaning but they all still sent the same message of positivity. We used bright coloured paper to brighten up the classrooms. We waited until the school was empty on Friday afternoon to stick up the quotes so it would be a surprise to everyone Monday morning.
Our group had the task of researching quotes regarding mental health and reading them aloud on the intercom. Another part of our task was to play around 30 seconds of a happy song to cheer people up. The purpose of our task was to cheer people up in the morning, and give them something to think about throughout the day. Especially for students who have exams, it was important for us to cheer them up. Our quotes were short and snappy so we could get our messages across, without boring people. We enjoyed doing this task as part of minding me week.
For Minding Me Week our group was in charge of setting up the Gratitude Tree. We made two posters and we cut out pieces of paper and threaded string through them to hang them on the tree. We would like to thank Ed for sourcing two trees for the junior and senior side of the school. We went around to all the classes in the school and asked them to write down something they’re grateful for on the paper and then hang it on the tree. The idea of this exercise was to allow people to be thankful for everything that they have and to help them to remember that although not every day is a good day there is something good in every day.
Our group organised time out for exam classes. We decided on a coffee morning for Third and Sixth years on Wednesday, 29th January. We wanted to do this to allow them to relax before their pres. We came up with what we would need to purchase for the coffee morning. We then went to the Principal to organise funding. This was our preparation done. On Tuesday we went shopping for what we needed and purchased our supplies. The next day we set up the hall for the students, made the tea and coffee and put out biscuits. We also put on music to help them relax. We were very busy throughout but we really enjoyed it and hope they did too!
Thank you to everyone who participated in Minding Me Week in Ard Scoil na nDéise. It was a great success and we are already looking forward to another successful Minding Me Week next year!!!
Ard Scoil na nDéise’s Senior and Intermediate teams qualify for the Munster Finals
The East Munster Schools Cross Country Championships were held at the WIT arena Carriganore on the 31st of January. It was a great day for the Ard Scoil na nDéise athletes with three teams competing on the day and two of these teams going on to qualify for the Munster final. The top fifteen athletes in each race qualify individually for the final along with the top four teams. The Junior team ran an exceptional race finishing in seventh place overall. Well done to Orlaith Dwyer, Maeve Bradfield and Crea Frisby. Sarah Nyan led for most of the Intermediate race and was just pipped for first place. Sarah led her team to second team prize. The team was made up of Sarah Nyahn, Caoimhe Prendergast 8th, Eve Dwyer 9th, Anna Hickey 11th, Emma Hickey 13th and Millie Lucey 19th. Well done girls!
The Senior team claimed third team prize, this team was led home by Lucy Holmes who finished 3rd individually. This team is made up of Lucy, Mary-Kate Prendergast 12th, Elia Tutty 15th and Kate Hickey 17th. The Munster finals will be held in Clarecastle on the 13th of February and we wish the best of luck to our Senior and Intermediate teams.