The boys from Gliondar Mara have been very busy getting ready for Easter. They decorated a beautiful backdrop for Spring and also for the Story of Easter. Meanwhile, each of them decorated their Easter tree with beautifully coloured ceramic eggs. A lot of work went into their display but they enjoyed every second of it and now, it's a delight for all of us in Gliondar Mara.
Well done boys!
Our recent Assembly celebrated all the boys efforts in speaking as Gaeilge. Practice in speaking another language is great for our brain development and our lessons in Irish along with supporting our heritage and culture, also improves the neuroplasticity of our brains.
Boys who had made great efforts to labhair as Gaeilge, were rewarded. And so too were classes for lining up well in the yard, to presenting well at assembly and for making a great effort to eat healthy lunches, do their homework, and tidy up their classrooms.
Several boys had birthdays in the past week and they were celebrated at the assembly with a big "Bréithlá Shona Dhuit" sung by the assembly. A technical glitch in our sound system didn't affect the final song of the day, as both Cian and Ben from Sixth Class ably led the whole school in a rendition of "Beidh Aonach Amárach".
After a tremendous month celebrating the Irish language and customs, the awards ceremony brought it all to a fitting close. And gave an added boost to our use of an teanga Gaeilge tríd an lae.
Thanks to our Parents`Association, our Students`Council, our Daily Mile habit and Martin O`Donnell, we have some great new additions to our backyard.
Mrs Byrne initiated our Daily Mile campaign last year. And it was a very worthwhile pursuit. Every day cones were laid out to show the track the boys had to follow and off they went.
Our Students Council asked for more permanent markings though and our Board of Management listened. This led to a permanent track being made all around our back yard. Which is where Martin O`Donnell comes in. He carefully laid out 250 metres of track safely within the confines of our yard.
The boys are encouraged to walk four laps but of course very many of them exceed this distance, some doing as many as twelve laps -or 3 kilometres-every day! All are encouraged to walk or run at a relaxed pace. And in the evening time, while waiting for the second bus, the boys take a stroll or jog around the track.
Its a simple idea that has already proved a resounding success! Thanks to our Board of Management for supporting that!
And yes, due to popular demand, we have added a third handball wall. This is the second handball wall which our Parents Association have so generously funded. And we're just thrilled with it. It means we can keep another class busy with handball practice during our breaks, and also give scope for more great matches and leagues during PE time.
So thanks to our great PA for funding that! And to Martin O`Donnell for making it.
Every body needs to move well and move often and we're sure our handball walls and track will help us all do just that.
The Confirmandii in our Sixth Classes received the Gifts of the Holy Spirit in a very special Confirmation ceremony last Wednesday. The ceremony took place in Mornington Church, where parents, grandparents, friends and families had gathered for the celebration.
Two bishops attended the ceremony, our newly appointed Bishop Deenihan and also the recently retired Bishop Michael Smith. Bishop Deenihan encouraged the assembled pupils to be mindful of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, particularly the gift of courage.
Afterwards, both Bishops took time out to chat with the children and to stand in for the all important photographs. This ceremony marks the final occasion for Bishop Smith to anoint the children in Mornington and the first occasion for Bishop Deenihan to do so. We wish them both well in the future, and courage too, for their own challenges in the future.
Our picture shows both Ms Gerrard`s and Ms Mullen`s Sixth Classes who all joined in the celebratory aspect of things today.
Ms Egan`s Fourth Class hosted an Open Afternoon for parents, families and friends in our Science Room on Friday. The boys were delighted to have a chance to showcase some of the experiments they had tried out over the past few weeks. These experiments included investigating the density of oil over water, improving the stability of constructions, watching colours separate in water and making butter.
Best of all, each investigation was carried out with every day household materials. The adults were intrigued by the science and the boys were delighted to volunteer explanations as the magic unfolded. Fun times!
The whole school enjoyed the Ceilí Mór in our hall today! Musicians James, Liam and Seán came along to lead the session. They played a selection of tunes before being joined on stage by several of our very talented pupils and teachers.
The whole event kept everyone in great spirits, especially as everyone got to participate. Yes, the real (reel?) fun of the Ceilí struck up when we all got to our feet to dance the Walls of Limerick and the Siege of Ennis. The older pupils shared their expertise with the younger ones. Bhí an-spórt ag gach duine. ( It was mighty craic!)
What a wonderful way to round off our Seachtain na Gaeilge, to celebrate St Patrick's Day and to get the long weekend off to a great start! Thanks to all of our very talented musicians on the day, to Ms Mullen and the Irish Committee for organizing the event and to Ms McWeeny, Ms Milne and Ellen for their invaluable musical expertise.
Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig oraibh go léir!
Bhí an-spórt agus craic againn sa halla inniu!
We had great fun in our hall today! Everyone from First to Sixth class gathered there for a great session of ceilí dancing. Led by Ms Mullen and her Sixth Class, the boys had great fun practising our traditional dances -The Walls of Limerick and the Siege of Ennis- ahead of the Ceilí Mór which takes place in our hall this Friday!
The Ceilí Mór has become one of the long standing traditions in our school. To the strains of the music and a steady repetition of "Aon, dó, trí, ceathar, cúig, sé, seacht...aon,do,trí, dó,dó, trí" the senior boys take the younger ones through their paces.
And this year we have assembled a great ceilí band from the members of our teaching staff and our pupils. Led by Ms Milne and Ms McWeeney, we'll have Ms Gerrard on accordian, Ms. Smyth playing the fiddle, Mr Carrig playing the mandolin. Pupils Seán, Tadhg, Ted, Cillian, Keane and Riley will join them to make this the best sessiún ever!
In honour of the day that's in it, the wearing of the green is encouraged but is optional. We don't want overstressed Mammies and Daddies rushing out to buy something for the day-a green scarf, hat or socks or even a St Patrick`s Day decoration would be fine.
Strains of "Peigín Leitir Mór" and "Beidh Aonach Amárach" are resounding around the school walls too in honour of the week that's in it! And even this week's questions are as Gaeilge as a variety of classes compete in Tráth na gCeist.
The damhsa(dances), amhráin(songs) and ceisteanna(questions) will all be put to good use again in this month's Assembly, the theme of which being Gaeilge, of course!
Táimíd réidh don Fleadh!( We`re ready for the Fleadh!)
We love to see our past pupils returning to encourage our present pupils along their educational journey. We're also working hard to win a Discover Science and Maths award. So, past pupil, Kevin Duffy arrived on our doorstep today to help us with both objectives.
A final year engineering student in UCD, he was delighted to talk to the boys in Fifth and Sixth class about engineering in our environment. Showing pictures of the Boyne Viaduct, The Mary McAleese Bridge, the Pyramids and the Eiffel Tower, he went on to discuss the best ways to make strong structures.
This led nicely into a group experiment. The boys broke into teams and had to create a strong structure from spaghetti and marshmallows. There were two rules: don`t break the spaghetti and don`t eat the marshmallows!
Of course, there was a lot of negotiation and discussion involved in the merits or otherwise of certain structures. It was all about engineering, about teamwork and about fun!
We had a blast last week at the RDS Science Blast! It was a culmination of months of effort from Ms McBride`s class. They had been looking after five houseplants over the past few months, ensuring that each of them received the same amount of water, and conditions but for one variable which sought to discover if plants have feelings.
One plant was shown happy pictures every day, another subjected to sad pictures. A third plant was regularly complimented, while the fourth plant was subjected to negative comments. The fifth plant was the control plant, being subjected to none of the positive or negative talk or pictures.
This week's assembly coincided with Ash Wednesday and, of course, the start of Lent. So it proved an irresistible opportunity to refresh some really good habits such as running, eating healthily, helping out at home and being kind to one another.
March of course also is a great month to remind us to bain usáid as cúpla focail-use the Irish language. The boys were reminded of the benefits of being bilingual and classes were praised for their use of Irish on a regular basis. Buachaillí from every class lined up for an interview with our Roving Reporter, Cian, from Rang 6. He proved a master interviewer with a ceist as Gaeilge for every boy, which they eagerly answered.
Our Skipping Workshops and our commitment to fitness were recalled with mesmerizing skipping demonstrations from Patrick, Kyle and Keith.
Mrs Quinn called out the names of our award winners of the month with one boys from each class chosen to receive the Respect award. Line awards went to Mrs Martin`s Junior Infants and Ms Mullen`s Sixth Class, while the On the Spot awards were given to Ms Mullen and Ms Gerrard's classes.
Meanwhile, Ms Smith's First Class and Ms McBride's Fourth Class received the Principal`s Awards for their efforts with homework, tidiness, caint as Gaeilge and healthy eating.
The assembly ended with a fine rendition of the poem "An Coinín" from Rang 1 agus Rang 2.
Our next Assembly is due to take place on March 27th and will see boys awarded for their efforts to speak as Gaeilge.