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Easter Newsletter

Welcome to the third edition of our newsletter for this school year. I would like to take this opportunity to commend our students on their wonderful greetings in the mornings and evening and throughout the school day with staff. It is so lovely to see their confidence levels building.

Thank you for your input as parents to our School Self Evaluation. Our areas for improvement are Wellbeing and Handwriting. Your feedback is important and we are working on these areas.

The school recently completed its enrolment process for 2022/2023 school year and we look forward to welcoming all our newly enrolled students and their families this coming September. Our Junior Infant open visit day will be held in early May.

Parents whom you know who missed the enrolments can contact the office on 0404 47488.

We had a very busy Term 2, dancing, tin whistle playing agus ag labhairt Gaeilge for Seachtain na Gaeilge. We planted 30 trees on the school grounds for National Tree Week. We celebrated World Book Day in full style and made crosses on St. Brigid’s Day! We completed wonderful art for Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and Easter. We baked our own pancakes from scratch for Pancake Tuesday and helped design our new school mural not to mention our own regular curriculum work! I hope you enjoy later in the newsletter reading about this and more classrooms news.

We received a Cyber Smart Award after our pupils and staff were surveyed and it is proudly displayed in the corridor. Our staff undertook further training in this area which helps keep us up to date in the fast-changing world of cyber safety for our pupils. We were also delighted to receive the Biodiversity for Schools Award for Wicklow.

Our gardening classes have started and we had a wonderful experience last week when Wendy brought the actual block of a tree in which a woodpecker had made its nest and since departed. It was interesting to see the strength of this little birds’ beak and so great to have them back in Ireland again.

On March 7th we welcomed some of our past pupils with their GAA football club cup with Barndarrig Club. They won the County final which has further inspired us in our PE skills.

We all look forward to a busy Term 3 with sports day, tours, planting our seedlings in the garden and the return of Elevation Dance School classes. We will also celebrate First Communion on May 7th and Room 3 is busy preparing for this.

All our rooms enjoyed an Easter Hunt this year designed by Room 5 (6th class) and it is wonderful to see the various bubbles all able to become one large bubble again and work on their Easter Hunt together.

Beannachtai na Cåsca

Una Gallinagh (Priomhoide)

News from The Rooms

Room 1 Junior and Senior Infants

Junior and Senior Infants in Room 1 had great fun with our Aistear themes, learning all about space, the doctor’s surgery, the vet’s surgery, the supermarket, shops and spring this term. We all enjoyed carrying out many different science experiments. Some of which included testing a variety of materials to see if they were waterproof or not and we also had great fun experimenting with magnets and finding many things in our classroom that were magnetic. The children loved sharing their predictions before they started experimenting.

We went on a lovely nature hunt around the school grounds to find many signs of spring. The children enjoyed some project work, particularly learning all about penguins. They worked together in groups to share prior knowledge and some new facts that they had learned. The groups then shared their ideas with the entire class and created some fantastic penguins of their own.

For Pancake Tuesday, Junior and Senior Infants enjoyed preparing and making pancakes in class. They were delicious!

World Book Day was a very enjoyable day for all. We dressed up as our favourite book characters. We discussed our favourite books and designed some wonderful book covers for our favourite books.

Junior and Senior Infants planted trees on the school grounds for National Tree Week and have also planted cress seeds. We brought the cress home and are watching them grow. We enjoy hearing about their progress during news time.

We all enjoyed taking part in the Daily Mile challenge this term, making the most of the good weather.

Room 1 were lucky to have Mr. Niall Murphy complete his placement from DCU with us this term. We had great fun and we hope he comes back go visit us soon.

Room 2 Senior Infants & 1st Class

Senior infants and First class in Room 2 have learned a lot about seals, biodiversity, and how plastic pollution is affecting the environment. We have all endeavoured to do our bit by reducing the amount of plastic packaging used in our lunchboxes. Many of the children have achieved the goal of eliminating plastic packaging altogether in their lunches. Many thanks to all parents who got on board.

The Daily Mile and movement breaks in the classroom have been helping with concentration and developing fitness while having fun.

Gardening with Wendy has been such a treat, every child sowed a row of peas and we have been watching their progress weekly. We also sowed some peas indoors in glass jars and can observe the roots as they grow. We have taken nature walks around the school to observe the signs of spring, taking note of all the flowers from bulbs that were planted last term, as well as the wild flowers.

We have been learning all about the Census. We built a Lego town in the classroom; each pupil was a householder and built their own house. We then completed a census, and used the responses in our census to plan and develop our town further. Every possible construction toy or activity that could be used was included in the building project.

Happy Easter everyone from all in Room 2!

Room 3 2nd class

Since Christmas, this wonderful 2nd class have been busy at work. There is simply too much to talk about, so it must be condensed for this newsletter.

To begin with, you may have noticed our new mural just below the school steps. Our fantastic little artists helped with the designing process for the mural. The mural is a lovely addition to Brittas Bay National School and we are very lucky to have the best view of it from our room.

Our artistic qualities did not stop there. In February, we celebrated St. Brigid’s day by making St. Brigid’s Crosses, which were woven from rushes. It was fantastic to see everyone in 2nd class engage with this and produce truly superb crosses.

In the build up to St. Patrick’s Day we decided to celebrate Irish culture in 3 ways. We listened to and performed Irish music, we enjoyed Irish food, and we practiced some Irish dancing. We also brightened up our room as we created shamrock men and stained glass designed shamrocks.

For National Tree Week, we were gifted trees from the Native Woodland Trust and from Wicklow County Council. We planted Alder, Birch and Sycamore trees. This was a fantastic initiative which helps us to do our part for the environment.

And finally, 2nd Class have been working very hard as we prepare for the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the First Holy Communion. To prepare for this wonderful event, we have become familiar with the various prayers, hymns and messages of God. Thanks to all the parents and students for their efforts. I hope you all have a wonderful and well-deserved Easter break. Go raibh mile maith agaibh, Mr. Furlong and everybody in Room 3.

Room 8 3rd Class

Third class pupils have been very busy this term. Our bird survey was very enjoyable and allowed us to experience the coming of spring through exploring the bird population in the school. Thanks to our self-made bird feeders we discovered that two blue tits, in particular, love coming for a midday feed. We also discovered that we have a school robin that hangs out beside the basketball court and rarely leaves throughout the day. One day in February we identified a beautiful chaffinch, although there has been no sight since. We also had lots of fun trying to identify the various birds with binoculars brought in from home. It’s great to work on our understanding of the natural world around us, especially as we can ask our gardening and wildlife expert questions on Wednesdays. We have been working on local historical landmarks – Castletimon Church, the Dolmen Stone, Wicklow Lighthouse, Magheramore and Dunganstown Castle. We gathered all information from various sources and created a huge colourful display. This has allowed us to work on our oral presentation skills.

Teamwork is very important in third class and we had great fun working in groups trying to create a really tall structure that would support an eraser. It sounded easy until we saw the marshmallow and spaghetti that we had to use. It was tricky and we learned a lot about the strongest shape there is. Do you know which is the strongest and most structurally sound shape? If not, ask one of us in third class.

We have also begun learning some Irish phrases and vocabulary that match commentators use. We regularly watch GAA on TG4 and it’s great listening to the native Irish that the commentator (tråchtaire) uses. This is very useful since TG4 shows so much of the league football on Sunday afternoons and we are able to follow it. Thar barr!

We were very lucky to come across a hilarious class novel Stanley – that everyone enjoyed. Reading really good books like it inspire us to write ourselves and we have been avidly working on our own stories and writing process over the last 2 months.

Beannachtal na Cåsca gach duine.

Room 7 4th & 5th class

This term, 4th and 5th class have been playing chess and draughts, with some very competitive games! We did a project on the history of our school, from the Old School at Brittas Bridge to our present school. Looking at old photos we were amazed at how much has changed in 150 years. The new mural caused great excitement and it inspired us to write lots of pirate stories.

We are now looking at the census, how it is done and what the purpose of a census is. We looked at the 1901 census and found that there were 18 houses in Ballinacarrig at that time.

In the garden we planted swiss chard, beetroot and spinach with Wendy and they have already germinated.

Happy Easter everyone!

Room 8 – 5th & 6th Class

Children in room 5 completed an ARC webinar.

Topics covered in ARC Webinar:

 The origins of seafood

  • The role of Aquaculture on a global scale
  • The role of Aquaculture on a local level
  • The role of Aquaculture on a personal level (health & nutrition)

As part of tree week, we planted trees in the forest area. We also planted lettuces with Wendy for our garden.

This term, they practised their debating skills within the class with fantastic results.

The children in sixth classes have completed their entrance requirements for their transition to secondary school.

We had a lovely visit from Garda Niall Kennedy. He gave the children great information, which will hopefully guide them in the future.

For Seachtain na Gaeilge we learned how to do the “Walls of Limerick”, an Irish reel and enjoyed Tråth na gCéist.

They all enjoyed the dress up day for World Book Day. The costumes were very creative.

We had great fun using STEM building challenges and using Minecraft for Education. We also participated in CSPPA, which is an all-island physical activity surveillance project which has been running since 2005. The purpose is to learn from primary (5th & 6th class pupils) and post-primary students their physical activity, PE and sport habits, preferences and opinions. Further practical work with this will follow in the summer term. Unfortunately, our Tip/Tag Rugby Blitz had to be postponed, but we have worked very hard to upskill in the necessary moves and tactics. We look forward to it being rescheduled.

Children in fifth and sixth class received an Accord day on 29/03/22. They all enjoyed this day and found it very informative.

They are also participating in a poetry recitation competition within the class in both languages. The competition is ferocious as the standard is very high.

We studied famous women in history and celebrated National Women’s Day in March. Rose, a sixth-class student, challenged the LGFA board on the equality of competitions for under 12s. She wrote a strongly worded letter, in both languages and as a result, she has secured a meeting with the LGFA Wicklow Board to discuss this.

We tested ourselves to discover what type of learner we are. The results were sometimes surprising.

The lovely children in sixth class are organising an Easter Egg Hunt for younger children within the school. They have worked very hard to create this. We hope they all enjoy it.

Dates for your diary:

April:

Wednesday, 27th April: Musical Dominican College Wicklow 4th , 5th and 6th Class

Friday, 29th April: CSPPA 5th and 6th Class (Fitness and Skills Session)

Friday, 29th April: Athletics

May:

Monday, 2nd May: Bank Holiday Monday

Wednesday, 4th May: Sacrament of Reconciliation at 7pm for Room 3

Thursday, 5th May: GAA Blitz 5th and 6th Class Boys Only

Saturday, 7th May: First Holy Communion at 12pm

Friday, 13th May: School Tour Junior and Senior Infants and 1st Class

Monday, 30th May: School Tour 2 nd and 3rd Class

June:

Friday, 3rd June: Southern Photography

Monday, 6th June: Bank Holiday Monday

Tuesday, 7th June: School Closed

Thursday, 9th June: School Tour 4th , 5th and 6th Class

Wednesday, 15th June: Garden Open Day

Tuesday, 21st June: Sports Day

Thursday, 30th June: 11.30am School Closes for Summer Holidays

Brittas Bay Parents Association Newsletter

Dear All,

Firstly, we extend a warm welcome to the latest student and family to join our community.

We hope everyone has been enjoying the brighter evenings. It’s lovely to see the flowers blooming around the school grounds, Wendy is back to teach all the children about how our food and plants are grown, we would like to thank all the parents who kindly help out with the school garden, Garda vetted volunteers are still needed, Ann has the forms in the office.

The new Mural, that was commissioned after speaking to the children and taking their ideas on board has added a lovely focal point to a once dark and unused space.

St. Valentine’s Day and World Book Day provided an array of colour and imagination, the children all thoroughly enjoyed these days, and it was lovely to see the books our children love, come to life! We raised a total of €359.20, thank you all.

Lå Fhéile Pådraig, saw the children arrive to school, not only in our native colours but blue and yellow in support of our Ukrainian friends. There was overwhelming support for our fundraiser from our school community and their families and we raised an amazing €871.00 to support Ukrainian families in our community.

We know the teachers and staff are working on other amazing ideas to challenge the children’s imaginations!

We wish you and your families a blessed Easter and once again thank you all for continuing to support the fundraisers.

The PA Committee