Collaborating from Home!

Collaborating from Home!

Who said group and collaborative work wasn’t possible during Lock down?…. It was no problem to our IT savvy P6 and P7 pupils!

As part of their “live” online RE lessons, pupils were divided into Groups and given a link to a Google JamBoard. Each group were tasked to create their own visual display of “The Beatitudes” which they had been learning about.

Pupils could see each other’s online presence and through the use of “Sticky Notes”, they communicated and negotiated with their JamBoard partners. Suggestions were made, tasks assigned and the overall appearance of their combined work agreed upon.

We were delighted with their combined efforts, why not click on the link to see for yourself the amazing collaborative work completed whilst physically distanced, well done to everyone!

P4-P7 Return to School

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I wish to thank you for the dedication and commitment you have shown in following the programme of online learning provided over this past number of months. I am very aware of the emotional impact that home learning has had on many and the provision of such learning has had on staff. Hopefully we have reached the end of this arrangement and can progress towards a more normal future.

Following on from the announcement by the Education Minister, Peter Weir on Tuesday 16th March, I write to remind you of procedures and protocols for the return of all children to school on Monday 22nd March.

In relation to returning to school we must continue to observe guidelines to reduce the threat of any further outbreaks of the COVID-19 virus

School Day

Four drop-off and pick-up points will remain:

  1. Nursery car park for a Nursery child and older siblings
  2. Front on the school for Year 1& 2 children and older siblings
  3. Main school car park for Year 3 & 4 children and older siblings
  4. Ti Chulainn car park where children can enter school grounds at the green house entrance for year 5, 6 and 7 children.

We will be asking children to come into school between 8.45 am and 9.30 am. This should allow the children to filter into school.

Classes will operate in Social bubbles as far as possible. Dinners times will remain as normal but only those taking school dinners will eat in the Dining Hall, where pupils will be seated in their class bubbles. Normal procedures for Nursery dinners will remain, were Nursery pupils will be served dinner in their own Classroom.

Break times and lunchtimes will be arranged in a manner that will ensure that just members of that class are playing together in a Social Bubble in the playground, each class will be assigned a separate play area.

We will continue to insist that children wash their hands at key times in the school day – when they come in, at break-time, before lunchtime, after lunchtime and before home-time.

We will be working within the Social Distancing advised by the Education Authority.

Normal pick-up times will be maintained:

1.30 pm for Nursery

2 pm for P1- P3

3 pm for P4 – P7

 Pupils uniform, school bags and homework

Pupils can attend school in uniform or PE kit. They should not bring in school bags but can take in a pencil case which is to remain in school. Pupils cannot be sharing their equipment with others.  Pupils should bring in a packed lunch in a lunch box or bag and a water bottle.

Cash handling in school

Payments should be placed in a sealed envelope and submitted to the class teacher by your child.

Visitors/parents to the school

There will be no visitors/Parents permitted into the school until further notice.

School Dinners.

All payments should be made on the first day of the week. £2.50 for Nursery and £2.60 for all other children.

Afterschool clubs and activities

There will be no after-school activities or games until further notice.

After school supervision is available from 2- 4 pm for those who need to avail of this service. For Nursery children 1.30 to 2 pm £1

All others from 2 pm to 3 pm £3

 School buses

Will be running as normal.

Yours sincerely,

Peter McDonnell


Niamh Fahey – Ireland and Liverpool Footballer

Niamh Fahey – Ireland and Liverpool Footballer

We are delighted to welcome Niamh Fahey, Ireland and Liverpool footballer,

to St Mary’s tomorrow, Monday 15th March @2 pm for a virtual Q+A session with KS2 pupils.

Niamh has won over 25 caps for Ireland and was named FAI Women’s Senior International Player of the Year. She is currently Liverpool Ladies Captain having previously played for Arsenal and Chelsea.

Niamh has represented her county playing for Galway Ladies. She helped them win their first All-Ireland Senior title in 2004. Niamh also has an All Ireland club medal playing for Parnells in London in 2012.

Thanks to Miss Niamh Murphy for organising this very special event and to Niamh Fahey for taking time from her very busy training schedule to meet our boys and girls. During the session pupils will have the opportunity to ask Niamh questions.

The session will start at 2 pm, a Collaborate link and details will be posted into Google Classrooms tomorrow morning.

A very special Monday afternoon treat for everyone – parents and grandparents are welcome to join.

P6- Virtual Coding Lessons

P6- Virtual Coding Lessons

Over the past number of Tuesday mornings our P6 Pupils have been learning to program using “Scratch”. On Tuesday past they had their last “virtual” session. When we return to school, they will complete the next stage of the project.

So far they have created their back drop, “An Abhainn” (The River) and programmed their “sprite” a frog, to follow their mouse pointer along the river. Each time the sprite bumps into the river back it is programmed to react, to make a noise, croak!

When it reaches certain targets along the river bank messages are programmed to appear. These messages are clues to locations around the village e.g.  “Clue- a place well known to the little red hen”- the mill.

Once all parts of the project are completed and put into place, pupils will have created a “virtual” 3d map of the village viewed using “virtual reality headsets” all their research will be linked via QR codes.

A huge congratulations to all our P6’s they have worked hard and overcome many obstacles, including learning to code via a virtual classroom. We are super proud of each and every one of them and super excited to see how the next step of the project develops. We will keep you posted!



P6- “Still Life” Live Art Lesson 🎨

P6- “Still Life” Live Art Lesson 🎨

The  AMAZING “Still Life” art work completed by P6 pupils in their live art lesson last Friday, with art teacher Sinead Campbell of  “The Art and Design Factory”. We think each and every piece of  work would grace the walls of any art gallery! Well done!!

This week was the turn of P5 and as soon as the boys of girls of P5  have upload their work we will bring it to you, here on our website.

If you’d like to learn more about Sinead’s work a link to her Facebook page is given below.



Safer Internet Day – 9th February

Safer Internet Day – 9th February

Safer Internet Day 2021 “Together for a better Internet”

Each year in St Mary’s we recognise the importance of Safer Internet Day by hosting Parents’ and Pupils’ workshops.

So this year we are asking families to take time to explore the Internet Safety tab on our school website where you will find links to information and stories related to this year’s theme “Together for a better Internet”

And why not check out tomorrow’s C2K Newsdesk story line made famous by ex president Donald Trump “Fake News”





Art Competition

Art Competition

The Ring of Gullion ,“Dragons in the Hills” Project have teamed up with local artists to bring an exciting art competition for all classes to take part in. The theme is: “Reptiles, Amphibians and Habitats”, it’s a great excuse for everyone to get outside, have a explore of some likely habitats,- ponds, marshy ground, stone walls, … Why not take some photos, and then once back indoors get experimenting with different media, paint, pastels, collage – choose the piece you are most happy with and submit a photo via the link given below!

All work must be submitted by 17th March There are some great prizes up for grabs!

Good luck everyone!!!

Dragons in the Hills Project’s Art Competition 2021


Children’s Mental Health Week – Day 2

Children’s Mental Health Week – Day 2
Learning something new each day can be really good for our well-being:
  • It raises our self-esteem
  • It encourages social interaction
  • It gives us a sense of hope and purpose 
  • It makes us better equipped to cope with stress

Today P6, ( and their teachers) were challenged to learn something new as they took on the challenges of learning (and teaching) a new language… the language of “Scratch” a programme which translates what humans say -so that their computers can understand!

Facilitated by Eleanor from REIM, not only did everyone begin to learn the new language they did it during a Live Lesson, whilst togging  between different screens on their devices, following Eleanor’s teaching on one, whilst trying out the steps for themselves on another.

ICT skills, thinking and communication skills all challenged whilst being creative! 

What new learning did you undertake today to support your well being?

Big Garden Bird Watch

Big Garden Bird Watch

The Big Garden Bird Watch takes place this weekend, 29th-31st January and we would love everyone to get involved. We have attached a bird identification and data collection sheet below.

If you do take part please send your results to P6/7 , c/o

P6/7 would love to use the results from across the school community for their Data Handling activities.