On Wednesday 14th of October a woman named Aideen Hayes came over to our school to do reflexology with us. We all had to bring in a pillow and a blanket. First of all Aideen showed us a slideshow about what reflexology is all about. We learned so much about how our body can be affected by stress and day to day pressures! we learned about our aura and mental health. We learned about the trigger points in our bodies and how reflexology can help us relax and heal.
The atmosphere in the room was very relaxed as there were candles lit around the room and the temperature was warm. Our teacher Ms. Duggan got her feet massaged first, she was put into a special chair with a blanket over her. She was very lucky as she looked so relaxed. After this, one of the students got a turn to get their feet massaged. Then we were brought down to the prayer room to do an hour of guided meditation. Everyone lay down on the white carpet with our pillows and blankets and just relaxed our minds. All in all, this was a very relaxing experience for us all.
By Siobhan Power 4A
6 groups of Transition Year students got to display their Mini-Company on Open Night 2015. The lucky teams involved showed off their products, discussed their ideas and took orders from visitors. Many of the companies have a growing order book so get your orders in early if you're interested in purchasing! The mini-Companies will be at market fairs around the county and here in school in the lead up to Christmas. Well done to all involved and keep up the hard work!
The teams involved in Open Night include;
"Wood you Remember?"
"A Wooden Dream"
"Wooden It Be Nice"
Well done girls. Hopefully they will make money. More importantly, hopefully they will remember us when they are millionaires!!!! Don't they look great?!
Last year's Transition Year students got one last chance to show off their modelling skills and style at the Coláiste Bríde Open Night 2015. 11 dresses and students from the 2015 TY class returned last night to showcase their designs, creativity and hard work. Some of these dresses made the final of the national recycling and design competition Junk Kouture.
We would like to say a huge thank you and well done to all the girls involved in this fashion show. They have raised the bar yet again and now, we as Transition Years have high standards to follow! We look forward to the challenge and the long days of hard work ahead! Hopefully we will be following in their footsteps to the Helix and the 3 Arena next year!!! ;)
In Ty we take part in a work experience. Ms Whelan organised for us to either go to the Community Workshop or the 1798 Centre. The people doing their work experience in the Community Workshop go one day a week for 6 weeks.
We go on a Wednesday between 10:30-12:00. We walk form Coláiste Bríde up through the town to the Community Workshop. We are split up into groups of two and three and we are given an activity in which we take part in with the disabled people who attend the Community Workshop. There are four groups. One group is taking part in dancing, another in gym work, another in art and crafts and the last group take part in Tidy Towns.
The dancing group come up with a dance routine for the disabled people in the astro centre. The students taking part in the gym help them to use the exercise machinery and supplies also in the astro centre. The students in the art and crafts make things such as paper maché, drawings and paintings. And finally, the last group of students take part in the tidy towns. This activity is very environmental. It consists of cleaning an area of the town and making it look beautiful again, for example planting flowers or trees.
This work experience is very heart warming and makes you more aware of how people with disabilities live their lives. It is a way for people to find out if they want to work with disabled people or not. It is a brilliant experience.
We all attended self defence in the sports hall on Thursday the 15th of October, with John Phillips. We took part because it is important that we know how to protect ourselves and others around us.
As part of the day we were shown different pressure points. Some pressure points are behind the ears and behind the collar bone. Pressing on these points if you are in trouble could help you to escape. We practiced these gently on each other so we would know where to apply the pressure if we needed to.
We were also shown how to get out of certain holds and turn the situation around. Each step has to be done quickly for it to work. Out of a class of 30 girls over 2/3 will be attacked at some point in their life. However, in a class of 30 boys, all of them will experience some kind of attack during his life. This is why self defence is so important. Some everyday weapons that you can carry include: Keys, Bottle of water, Magazine, or Large hair clips. So watch out – don’t try to hurt any of us!!
ST AIDAN’S PRIMARY SCHOOL
Every Monday morning Students from 4A go to St. Aidan’s Primary School to help teach the students. This is great for anyone who would like to be a primary school teacher in the future. By going to St. Aidan’s and dealing with the children it gives us a good feel of what the life of a teacher is really like and all the challenges with this career.
Three students from Coláiste Bríde go into each classroom. The teachers are very nice and always keep us busy. The students are great characters and always pleasant and usually do what we ask them to do.
Some days we help the teachers out, by cutting out things, giving out copies and making posters, but usually we help with the children. Most mornings the teacher has divided the class into six groups. Each group is given a different task. Table one would practice their writing, table two use the IPods, table three do styles, table four do an unseen book, table 5 do free writing and table six read a familiar book. There is a Coláiste Bríde student at each table and after 7 minutes we switch tables. Sometimes this can be challenging because sometimes it’s hard to keep the children focused and listening. Overall we really enjoy it.
St. Senan's Primary School
BY: Katie Fox
Every year Transition Year students are invited to St. Senan’s Primary School to help teach their students. Every Monday, Thursday and Friday a different group of students go up to the school and help the students with their maths, reading and writing. We have a schedule; 4A go on Mondays, 4B go on Thursdays and 4C go on Fridays. We are divided into pairs and put into different classrooms from junior infants up to second class. I was partnered with Diane Whiley and put into 1a.
The first Monday morning was nerve wrecking but exciting. At first, we sign in at the front office and wait in the hall for our teachers and our class and then we follow them up to the classroom.
We do a lot of things to help the teachers with the children. We do English; helping the children to read books and write about their weekends or they do their PAT which helps them learn new words. We do maths; which helps them memorise their tables and how to do sums. We learn songs in Irish and dance to music. Then at 10:15 we leave to go back to school.
It’s a really enjoyable experience and would genuinely make you consider primary teaching. The children are so nice and have great personalities. I enjoyed this type of work experience so much I signed up for the homework club after school to help the children with their homework.
Thank you to St. Aidan's for the pictures and to both St. Aidan's and St. Senan's for having us every week. We really love coming to help out!
Syrian Refugee Appeal at Coláiste Bríde
The Transition Year students decided to get involved in the ‘Wexford to Calais Refugee Appeal’. We were asked by the ‘Wexford to Calais Refugee Appeal’ organisation to bring in men’s clothes for the refugees for Syria. This convoy had lots of women’s clothes so we were asked to only contribute men’s clothes and shoes. We had a week to get ourselves sorted and bring in as much clothes as we could. Even though our main focus was on men’s clothes, we could bring in other items such as blankets, toothbrushes, razors etc. Everything helps. This was a really good idea as Syria is going through a civil war and it’s hard for people who have left their homes to get supplies.
By the end of the week, we had a big collection of black bags gathered. We counted them and loaded them in to the van. Altogether, we had 160 bags for the appeal. This was a fantastic amount of bags collected for the refugees. It was a great cause and we were all happy to take part. We know that the bags were going to a worthy cause and we were delighted that we could help these people through a difficult time.
Transition Year Retreat – Ruth Lambert 4A
On the 2nd of September 2015, we took part in the Transition Year Retreat held by Declan Browne.
The aim of the retreat was to help us join together and make new friends, to get to know our year group better, to learn more about being able to relax and meditate and look on the bright side of life. We wanted to learn how to participate and work well together as a group and to help us recognise God in our lives.
I felt the beginning of Transition Year was a good time to have this bonding day because we could all get to know each other better before we settled into Transition Year. We were informed about the retreat on the 27th of August when we had a half day in school and where we were informed of what classes we were going to be in for the year, 4A, 4B or 4C.
The annual Retreat was free of charge. We devoted 20 minutes of our Retreat to meditation. During this, we lay on the carpet while Declan, our instructor, played relaxing music and told us a story to capture our imaginations and help us relax.
One of the activities we took part in was a bonding exercise which helped us use our minds and speak from our hearts. We were each given a page to write our name on and pass it around the whole circle and each person had to write their opinion of that person. As many of us were not in the same class in Junior Cert, we did not know each other very well. Another activity which we took part in was we had to split in half and everyone had to make the shape of letters which Declan called out. We all had to work together as a team for this exercise and use our brains which worked out well.
At the end of the day Declan told us stories about his life and stories about other people’s lives that he had heard and we all sat around him in a circle and listened. This was very interesting as it made us realise that everyone has problems not just us. We all prayed together at the end of the retreat which really made us all feel like one big family. I wouldn’t make any changes if I was to do the retreat again with Declan as I really enjoyed it. Overall I feel the day was very successful and I learned a lot. We are really looking forward to our year in TY.
On the 28th of September my class and I took part in a three day course learning first aid. This course taught us how to perform C.P.R, how to help someone if they are choking, how to deal with cuts, brakes and sprains.
Our instructor's name was Gary. He runs a company called Life Save. He travels around Ireland giving courses to people who want to learn how to do first aid.
The following is a brief summary of some of the things we learned from First Aid with Gary;
We learned that to perform C.P.R you have to push on the person’s body extremely hard and that it doesn’t matter if you break a rib as long as you are doing it right. You do 30 compressions and 2 breaths, an AED doesn’t start the heart like you see on T.V, in fact, it stops the heart.
If someone’s heart stops beating they have approximately 4 minutes until their brain starts to die . This is why it is important to get to someone as quick as you can. When your heart stops beating for up to 4 minutes, then, you are called clinically dead you can be resuscitated in that time period hopefully without brain damage but after that you are called biologically dead. This is where there is no coming back - you are dead. If someone does get to you before the 4 minutes and starts performing C.P.R on you, it can give you up to 10 minutes before your brain starts to die.
Someone does not die of a heart attack they die from a cardiac arrest, a cardiac arrest can come on due to the heart attack but the heart attack doesn’t kill you.
I’m happy that I got the chance to do this course because it has given me information that I didn’t know and how to react in a situation if someone ever has a cardiac arrest, heart attack, stroke, any breaks and sprains .
TRANSITION YEAR TRIP TO THE NATIONAL PLOUGHING CHAMPIONSHIP 2015
On Wednesday September 23rd the Transition Years went to the National Ploughing Championship in Ratheniska, Co. Laois. We were informed of the trip within the first week of school. The cost of the trip was included in the Transition Year fees which we all paid at the start of the year.
We were brought to the National Ploughing Championship because Ms. Whelan thought it would be a great way for us to get ideas for Mini-Company while having fun and enjoying the day as well.
I got to look at many small businesses and I now have a much clearer vision of what I want to do for my Mini-Company this year. We saw so many small businesses from all over Ireland. A few of us got great ideas for our Mini-Company and most of us got a few freebies!! There was plenty free food available and we made the most of that!
From visiting the livestock area, we learned a thing or two about farming. Mr. Kehoe would be proud of us!! I had a lot of fun with my year group and feel I am much closer with some of the girls than I would have been before.
I really enjoyed this trip and in my opinion, it has been one of the highlights of Transition Year so far. I found that the trip was a good way to bond together as a year group and also to get ideas for future projects such as Mini-Company.
BY RACHEL SINNOTT 4A
Our Opening of School Year Mass and the celebration of Mercy Day took place on Thursday 24th of September.
We had many special guests for the important event. Bishop Dennis Brennan, Fr. Byrne, the parish priest of St. Senan’s and Fr. Furlong the parish priest of St. Aidan’s were the celebrants of the mass. Also some past pupils of our school and Mercy Sisters were in attendance.
In our mass celebration, we welcomed this year’s first years and also remembered the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, Catherine McCauley.
As Transition Year students, we all had our part to play in the mass. Our Religion teacher, Miss Larkin, helped us organise the Offertory procession, and we helped organise the mass. Class 4A, took on the role of organising the Homily for the mass. There were 9 students in our class who had to research the life of Catherine McCauley and we presented our findings to the school during the service. The rest of the class designed posters and pictures to hang up on display.
The celebration of the mass was lovely and Miss Larkin’s 5th year choir class delivered a lovely set of hymns.
When the mass was over, our guests were invited back up to the school for some light refreshments and a small service opening our exhibition of ‘Mercy Education- The Journey’ which is on display in our school.
By Bridin Ellard 4A.
School fashion show
Well after a very long week of blood, sweat, tears, needle wounds and hot glue burns, we finally got our dresses ready for the stage. We had a week of preparation prior to the fashion show to perfect our dresses or in some cases start dresses over again! In a nut shell, this was simply the most tiring school week of TY and probably of my 4 years here in school. After the commotion we finally finished or accepted our dresses as they were and headed for the runway. On Tuesday evening after lunch, we made our way to the sports hall for a dress rehearsal of the fashion show which would take place on Wednesday. You could feel the nerves off the models as they began to strut for the very first time with an audience. Some people had to wear their hats or their shoes perhaps just to get used to them because some were more awkward then others. The dress rehearsal ran smoothly considering the music wasn’t the best quality at that stage and Ms.Duggan was on the edge of a break down! Then, on Wednesday morning, we went straight into hair and makeup at 9.50. Once the top balcony had a good lingering smell of hairspray we went down stairs for the final dress rehearsal. This one was a lot easier because we had the stage ready and the real music was ready. All the models got their final chance to practice their dance before performing it in front of the whole school. Lunch came and nerves were running high while we made the final touches to our models and of course our dresses. At the end of lunch we began to see the students pouring into the lunch hall and taking their seats. Everyone was so excited but also terribly nervous. Once Ms.McEvoy and Ms.Duggan took the stage, the show just ran so smoothly and went better than anyone thought. Each dress took the stage effortlessly and had their 90 seconds of fame! Every model did a brilliant job and all the dresses looked so good up on stage. The show lasted 2 hours with talent acts at the intervals which were also amazing. It seemed like it lasted for ten minutes once it started because it flew by. Once all the dresses had preformed we had the final walk around the whole sports hall so students could get a close up look at our dresses. When it was all over, all the models gathered for a group photo on stage and then the preparations began for an evening show for all the parents.
Parent fashion show
After taking part in the school fashion show we were glad to finally get a break before the next fashion show. We were putting on an evening show for our friends and family from outside the school. This was especially great as we got to show off all the hard work that we have done over the past 5 months, including the week and a half of stressful dress making trying to finish our outfits. It was a great opportunity for us to show off our work as many people don’t see how much work we actually do in transition year
After refuelling and calming down from the previous fashion show, which was put on for students in the school. We began redoing hair, makeup and tan, fixing anything that may have broken or come loose from the hustle and bustle of back stage. The models frantically trying to remember their dance moves and deal with their nerves while the designers prepared for any questions the judges may ask when they come to inspect the work we have done. Once we were finally ready, the three judges came up to examine our dresses. Frances White, the creator of Buí Bolg, Blackwater Milliner Alice J. Kelly and Siobhan Keane of Vintage Belle Clothes shop made up the judging panel. The panel of judges then went around to each individual dress group asking questions about the materials which the dresses were made from and the way they were made. They were very impressed with the outfits that we had made. We then got pictures for the paper just before the show.
The hall started to fill up with friends and family who could not wait to see the show. It started at 7 o’clock sharp in the same order as the student show, it was slightly less daunting for the models doing it for the second time but they were quite nervous all the same! There were also interval acts which were equally as impressive as the models performances. After all the models got the chance to show off their outfit we had a walk about around the stage and down into the audience, giving everyone a closer look at the detail and effort put into each dress that they may not have noticed on stage. All models were then assembled on the stage waiting for the judges to make their choice. This took a few minutes as all the dresses were so good and they found it hard to choose a winner. They finally came to their decision. Then the student choice and judges’ choice winners were announced by the hosts Ms. Duggan and Ms. McEvoy. The judges and Ty coordinator were then presented with flowers and the show came to an end. We then went down to our families to get pictures and talk about the show. Everyone commented on what a great experience it was. We were exhausted but delighted with our efforts after such a hard few months!
Judges' Choice Design of the Year 2015 "On Stranger Tides"as chosen by the Judges at the evening Fashion Show.
Congratulations and well done to all involved in this spectacular show. The Transition Year girls of 2014/15 have done themselves proud!
Title: Bodhrán Making
Author: Aoife Kehoe 4B
On the 8th December 2014 we met with a man called Michael Vignose from Galway who makes Bodhráns. We were advised to bring gloves, an apron, a hammer, pens, paint and a cloth. We met in the Lunch hall that morning and were introduced to Michael. At first he gave a demonstration of how to make a bodhrán. He showed us how to sand down the wheel of wood (the body of the bodhrán) and make it smooth around the edges. This looked like very hard work!
He proceeded to show us how to soak the goat’s skin and put it on tightly and securely. Then he showed us how to hammer in the pins around the side to keep the goats skin in place. And within minutes he had made a bodhrán!! How long would it take us to make a bodhrán??!!!
After this, we got our own sand paper and wooden wheel to sand down. It took a good length of time to sand down our wood and we left the room in a cloud of dust!! When they were smooth we each got a cross bar for the bodhrán. We needed Michael’s help for this because we needed to drill the crossbar onto the bodhrán!
We varnished the wood and secured our goat’s skin onto it. This involved cord, glue and thumbtacks! Firstly, we had to make a lasoo from cord to wrap around the skin tightly in order to hold the skin in place. Then we began the laborious task of hammering in the thumbtacks. This was not a nice job. Many hundreds of tacks fell to the floor damaged and broken! This was the most difficult element of our task. Thankfully nobody stood on upturned tacks!!
When the skin is dry you can put a design onto it. Michael showed us how to do this. I did a Celtic treble clef design as I have a great love of music along with my name “Aoife”. First we traced it onto tracing paper and then onto the bodhran itself. We had to go over it with a sharpie pen. I was very proud of my Bodhrán in the end. It turned out lovely.
I loved how we got to do everything from sanding the wood to tracing our designs. It was a very worthwhile and enjoyable workshop. I didn’t think it would be as hard as it was and definitely didn’t think the skin would smell that bad! I loved my finished product. Michael was a lovely man and a great help and I loved being taught how to play the bodhrán by him. We are very grateful for the opportunity to make our own Irish Instruments.
World Press Photography Exhibition
On Tuesday we went to the World Press Photography Exhibition in the CHQ in Dublin. We left the town at 9:00am and reached the city at around 11. The year was split into two groups because all 81 of us couldn’t fit in the space for the exhibition. The first group went downstairs to look at the photos. Meanwhile, the other group made a small detour to Starbucks. The World Press Photography Exhibition highlights the best examples of photojournalism in the world. Each picture has a story behind it, some evident and some less so, but all powerful. All the prize-winning photographs are assembled into an exhibition that travels to 45 countries over the course of a year, and published in the World Press Photo yearbook. These photos are showcased in over 100 different venues worldwide seen by over two million people.
Professional photographers from 124 countries entered 78,083 photos into the competition in 2014 alone. The competition is of a very high standard and is judged by a jury of international professionals. The overall winner for 2014 was called Signal and it depicted a group of people lifting their phones up to the sky in search of a signal. The back-story to this is that African migrants on the shores of Djibouti, a stop off point for those leaving countries such as Ethiopia and Somalia in search of a better life in Europe and The Middle-East, are looking for a cheap signal from neighbouring Somalia in order to contact family and friends from home. This picture is very powerful in that the story behind it has a deep meaning, but in my opinion it wasn’t the winner. However, I am not one of the world’s leading photographers, so I am certainly not the best person to judge the winner of the competition.
My personal favourite was one in the series Massacre at the Westgate Mall. This series shows pictures from the attack on a mall in Nairobi, Kenya in September of last year. A Somali jihadist group claimed responsibility for the four day siege which killed at least 60 people and injured up to 200. It was my favourite because it made me unbelievably angry. The caption on the photo below read, “A member of the security forces pursues the assailants.” The reason I was so angered was that the photographer completely ignored the dead body surrounded by blood on the floor. Whether he merely chose not to focus on it or he did it purposely to put across the message that our society has become so desensitised to blood and gore that it doesn’t even affect us, I’m not sure. I presume the latter as it caused a reaction in me that I certainly didn’t expect and this was probably what the photographer was looking for when he captioned the photo.
I really loved the World Press Photography Exhibition because it was such a beautiful and varied set of photos. No story was the same and every single one was important. I feel that this show brings the world together through opening our eyes about things we never knew about before and making things we see on the news much more real. The world is not a big place. Things, good and bad, happen all around it every single day and most of us have absolutely no idea. All of these things being brought to my attention was the main reason why I loved this Transition Year trip so much. It was an amazing experience and, considering I had never heard of the exhibition before, one that I most likely wouldn’t have gotten outside of Transition Year.
From Wednesday the 5th to Friday the 7th of November, all Transition Year mini-companies participated in ‘Dragon’s Den’. Each class had a group of three ‘Dragons’ to impress. They all pitched their products and tried to gain some mentorship or an investment from the Dragons. All groups brought in their best products to put on show, and made beautiful stands and displays. They then gave a short presentation outlining their product and their hopes for the future of their companies. It was a great experience, and helped each student perfect their entrepreneurial skills. Thanks to all the teachers who agreed to take part and support our businesses, the help and suggestions were very welcome.
On Thursday the 6th of November, 7 Transition Year mini-companies attended the Lion’s Club Wine, Food & Craft fair in the Riverside Hotel. ‘Fluff & Stuff’, ‘Alphabetti Spaghetti’, ‘Stone Mad’, ‘Hair Bears’, ‘Scrabble Crafts’, ‘Chalk It Up’ and ‘Everything But the Kitchen Sink’ all set up wonderful stalls, showing off the best of their wares. The whole room was packed with people, and the girls marketed their goods very well. Lots of orders were taken and sales were made, and the people visiting the stalls loved all the unique products. Thanks to the organisers for giving our mini-companies free entry. Well done to all the girls who attended and represented the school so well.
Coláiste Bríde students take to the stage
On Wednesday 5th of November two groups of our TY students took part in the Community Workshop Variety Show “Showing me, Showing you”. First up were Grace Brennan and Kasey Doyle, who preformed a traditional Irish dancing routine with both hard and soft shoes.
Next to perform were the singers, Emily Daly, Niamh Crowhurst, Leah O’Brien, Gráinne O’Neill and Gráinne Kearney accompanied by Aoife Doyle on the acoustic guitar.
There were many other well known acts from the local area including Teddy Quinn, The Lambert Sisters, Stephen Murphy and Roisín Dempsey along with the outstanding Cáirde from CWCW. This was a great night where all the community came together.
With an audience of around 600 people, it was a great success.
3-Day First Aid Course
From Monday the 3rd to Wednesday 5th of November, 4C completed their First Aid course and received their certificates in First Aid. This was all completed under the mentoring of FEETAC First Aid Examiner and Occupational Health and Safety Advisor Gary Goggin. The course involved learning basic First Aid skills along with life saving procedures. These include the abdominal thrust, CPR, and how to use the vital AED machine. This is needed by your side in any cardiac emergency, or situation which leads to unconsciousness. These basic skills involved treating burns and cuts of all levels, the recovery position, and how to react in a first aid emergency. This was a very informative course, which might come in handy in the future.
Each Wednesday during the first term, a group of 10 Transition Year students attended the Community Workshop. While they were there, they organised different workshops which included arts and crafts, penmanship, cookery and dance. In these workshops each group took part in different activities where they helped the clients to improve their skills. All the girls thoroughly enjoyed their time in the workshop and were sad it was over. Good luck to the students who are taking part this term.
22nd- 26th September 2014.
On Monday, each TY class group spent a double class with Eimear Doyle, from the Student Enterprise. She came to talk to us about our mini companies. She gave us some pointers on how to price our product, how to promote our products, how to package our products and where to sell them.
She went around to each mini company, in turn, looking at our sample products. She asked us questions on our products and we gave her the answers. She gave each of us her honest opinion on our products, telling us to do more research, if needed and also telling us who we should contact in order to find places to sell our products. Eimear gave us her honest opinion on whether or not she thought our idea was a good one and also how we can improve our products.
On Tuesday, we went to the National Ploughing Championship in Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co. Laois. We had to meet at the prom at 8:30 am to get the buses up to Laois. When we arrived, we waited for the tractor and trailer to come along and drop us to the entrance. Once the trailer arrived, we packed into it and we were then dropped a short distance from the ticket office. There, Ms. Whelan gave us our tickets. We decided to meet again at 4:00pm under the purple blimp. Then, we swapped our tickets for wrist bands at the ticket office.
We all went our separate ways for the day, although we often saw each other at different tents and stalls. Some of us met up again for lunch and a drink. We had great fun. We may have been tired afterwards but it was definitely worth it.
We got lots of freebies from tents such as Lidl, Aldi, Supervalu, Eircom, Done Deal, RTÉ and many more. Some of us were even lucky enough to meet and get photo-opportunities with people such as Dave Kearney, Rob Kearney, Sean O’Brien, Isaac Boss, Marty Morrissey, Anne Doyle and Donal Skehan.
The weather stayed dry and even though it was a bit cold, we didn’t mind. It was a great day all in all. We had fun, bonded, learned even more about Ag-Science and we also got some mini company ideas for packaging, promoting and displaying our products.
The at 4:00pm we all met back at the purple blimp, where we had a roll call to make sure everyone was there. Then we headed back to the bus. Some people took the tractor and trailer back and some walked. Then on the bus we laughed and chatted. It was the perfect end to a great day.
On Wednesday afternoon, we had the school mass. Ms. Jeffords made a short speech at the beginning of mass on behalf of Ms. O’Sullivan and herself. She welcomed all students back and she also extended her welcome to the first years and all new students in the school. Then, Fr. Byrne invited the first years into the sports hall. They walked into the sports hall, led by their Meitheal leaders. The first years received heather shrubs as a symbol of their initiation into the school, these came in multiple colours, from turquoise to purple. The choir sang beautifully as always and everyone loved their performances. There were beautiful readings by some transition years. The offertory procession was carried out by 6th year students. Ms. Larkin’s 4B class did a “Liturgical Dance” during reflection. They used sign language to dance to “You Raise Me Up” which was sung by some choir members. All in all, it was a beautiful mass.
On Thursday, Niamh, a woman from Ráidio Rí Rá came in for an Irish workshop. We were divided into groups and while some were with Niamh. The rest were in class. When she arrived, she asked how we were. Most people answered with “go maith” but a few people said things like “go hiontach” and “go hálainn”. Those people got wristbands for being different. We then got into groups and had to come with why Irish is important and why it’s “cool”. We were then asked our opinions on certain matters and had to go and stand in different corners of the room to depict these opinions. All opinions were shown with different memes. Then, Niamh spoke to us about RRR and about all that they do. She then played some songs in Irish and then we had to guess the band. If we got it correct then we got the RRR CD for this year with famous Irish bands singing their songs in Irish. This was great fun.
On Friday, we spent the morning in school. We were heading off to Wicklow Gaol and the Leinster Match. At 12:30, we were walked to the grotto to get the buses. We had lots of fun on the way up on the bus. When we got to The Wicklow Gaol, we were split up and we started the tour. The man doing the tour was creepy but it was cool. The gaol itself was surprisingly cold, even though it was warm outside. We learned a lot about life in prisons from 1700s to 1900s. The wax figures showed and helped us to imagine what life was like for the prisoners.
Then, when we were finished at the gaol, we went to Stillorgan where we had dinner, some of us went to McDonald’s, some of us to Eddie Rockets and others elsewhere. We had so much fun, just chatting, bonding and eating together. We played games and just had fun in general. Then, the majority of us went to either Tescos or Deals to buy some snacks and drinks for during the match and for the bus home. Some of the girls bought face paint in Deals and so we painted each other’s faces with blue and white dots.
We met back at the buses at 18:30 and we were off again. We were all so excited about the match. When we got there, we were singing the Irish National Anthem and we were waving at everyone we saw. We then got a group photo and took lots of selfies.
We then headed in towards the stadium. We were buzzing. We then walked around the stadium and headed towards our stand. When we got there, we all chose our seats and sat down. We were so excited. Once the match started we were all bonding so much that we were all really close friends. We were all celebrating together and screaming our heads off. When the “trys were scored we were beyond delighted. By half-time I was hoarse. Then at the end when Leinster won, we were ecstatic. We also saw the man who had been in charge of our 2nd year parade and we all got high-fives and we gave him a massive cheer. Then we left and headed home. We were absolutely exhausted but it was so worth it. We had an amazing time together. It was brilliant.
Monday: On our first day of the weeklong film course we met our two mentors Paul and Brendan. We were quick to learn about each type of equipment used in the process, including cameras, clapperboards and the sound equipment: “the boom and the zoom”. Our class group 4A made a short movie on the first day consisting of only four lines; “Hello”, “Hi”, “How are you?” and “I’m fine.” This exercise introduced us to the long process that is filmmaking. With that slight reality check we finished the day by watching past movies created by Coláiste Bríde students and students from across the province.
Tuesday: We began the morning by splitting into small groups of three or four and coming up with an idea for a film. My group planned out a modern take on Romeo & Juliet. The class then presented their ideas in their individual groups and we voted on which we wanted to do. The two movies selected were “Fairytale Convicts” and “The Movie”. I chose to take part in the production of the former as I thought the idea was much more interesting. We finished off the day by planning out each of the scenes which we would rehearse the following day.
Wednesday: The parts were given out to the fifteen members of our cast and crew that morning. I was given the roles of Prince Charming and Sneezy The Dwarf. We organised our costumes and the script with the help of our Creative Director, Eimear Murphy, and our crew roles were handed out by the Technical Director, Courtney Lacey. When everything had been planned out and decided on we moved onto practicing. Brendan, who had taken the job of mentor for “Fairytale Convicts”, helped us throughout the process but always insisted that it was our project and we were to do with it as we pleased. This encouragement was really helpful as we always had a guiding hand during the production.
Thursday: This was our first day of filming “Fairytale Convicts” and due to school timetables and locations we decided to film Cinderella first. In this I had a leading role as Prince Charming and through some kind of miracle I also had no lines, making my job infinitely easier. After this scene was filmed we moved on to the main scene of the movie, set in the school library. This truly tested our cast and crew’s ability as the number of angles, takes and lines made it a long and arduous process. Throughout the day Brendan made our jobs much simpler by suggesting the easiest ways to film certain parts and alternative angles we could use. By the end of the day we were slightly nervous that we wouldn’t be able to finish our film by 3:20 the following day.
Friday: It was all systems go that morning as both cast and crew rushed to get our Rapunzel scene completed due to our very own Rapunzel, Zoe Latchford, leaving at lunch time. This added stress caused tensions to mount but our team was able to knuckle down and pull out a brilliant performance. Then, we moved on to our final princess scene, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, which had most of our group as characters, leaving a lot of work to the crew. Our final scene was a close shave with only ten minutes left before the bell when it was finished. This was mainly due to the hilarity that ensued when one of the characters said their line. However, our team completed the production of “Fairytale Convicts” and most importantly had a lot of fun doing it.
I think that this week was a true learning experience for everyone involved, and one that we would not have gotten were it not for the excellent T.Y. Programme offered in our school. It taught us patience, cooperation and time management, as well as many other valuable lessons, in a fun and stimulating environment.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Paul and Brendan from Film Circle, on behalf of myself, Kate Hall, and my team members; Eimear Roche, Eimear Murphy, Eimear Crean, Courtney Lacey, Orla Healy, Clodagh McCarthy, Sarah Roche, Orna Murphy, Niamh Buttle, Charlotte Bruce, Áine Brauders, Gráinne O’Neill, Zoe Latchford and Áine Harris. They made our experience extremely enjoyable and we would particularly like to thank Brendan for always being there to help us with whatever we needed…and eventually laughing at our jokes.
Kate Hall, 4A.