What a busy year it has been for the students involved in the JCSP. It was a fun filled, educational and productive year. Thanks to all the students who participated in all aspects of the programme.

Artist in the Classroom
This initiative focused on creative visual skills development where the artist worked for a short time with the group of students. The aim was to produce a piece of wall art that could then be exhibited in the school. The students worked on a theme and after a few weeks they all agreed on the design. They priced the plywood and we purchased 5 pieces of ply ( 8 X 4 ) along with Spray cans, protection masks, brushes, varnish, paper and paint. The students came up with the motto “ if you are not having fun there is no point doing it”. The students worked for a number of weeks on the project and completed their wall display before the Halloween break.
Christmas Celebration

This is an opportunity for the parents and teachers to celebrate the achievements of the JCSP students. The Students from First, Second and Third year were involved. Class 3C organised the event. All Classes helped with the decoration of the coffee dock, Christmas tree, 3rd corridor and food. A lot of work goes into the Christmas Celebration and every year the feedback from the parents is very positive. Our guest speaker this year, Jason Black, gave an inspirational talk to all who attended.

Digital Storytelling
Everyone has a story to tell. Digital storytelling revolves around the idea of combining telling stories with any of a variety of available multimedia tools. Digital Storytelling using iPad Animation & Green Screen technology. The 30 x pupils were split into groups of 2/3 and taken through the animation process: idea, scriptwriting, character development, storyboarding, animating. Each group produced a short animation on a theme of their choice using iPads and the day finished with the showcasing of all animations.

Celebrity Chef
This initiative allowed the students an opportunity to cook/bake a variety of dishes. The students also went to Claire the Bakers for a 2 week baking class. They baked queen cakes/muffins. This initiative ran throughout the academic year.

Woodwork Initiative- JCSP Tree for Life
The students designed and made a JCSP 3D tree. The tree itself was made from MDF and mounted onto plywood. The tree is 8ft in height . Each leaf on the tree was moulded using cement/clay and decorated by individual students using an array of materials and paints.( each leaf is unique). The students helped paint and decorate the tree. They also arranged and stuck the leaves onto the backdrop. The Tree is now on display in the 3rd corridor. The students worked on this project for a number of weeks.

Physical Education Initiative
At the start of the school year the students enjoyed a day out kayaking in Moville. They were shown the importance of safety in the water and the correct steps on how to use a kayak – getting into a kayak, forward paddling stroke, backward paddling stroke, forward sweep stroke, reverse sweep stroke, stopping technique. The students can now apply all the skills and knowledge learned into future adventures on the water.

Drama Initiative
As part of the Drama initiative the students enjoyed a Samba Dumming Workshop. Time flies when you are having fun and this was the case on Friday 26th February. The Drumming workshop certainly went with a “bang”. From the small African hand held shaker to the Brazilian bass drum – the 1st and 2nd years made it a fun, energised and noisy experience.

Make a Book Initiative
On the 10th March a group of students travelled to Dublin to the JCSP Make A Book Exhibition. This is a creative cross- curricular project for students in the Junior Certificate School Programme (JCSP). A 2nd year group showcased their contribution “The Spinning Wheel” at the nationwide exhibition of creative work. The students worked on this project for a number of weeks under the guidance of Johnny Shiels and made their own miniature spinning wheel using traditional methods. They also weaved their own book cover( which was time consuming and required a lot of patience)The end result is a testament to the effort and co-operation of all the group. The Spinning wheel is now on display in room 312.

Math For Fun Initiative
All first year classes participated in a six week Math For Fun Initiative programme in the Coffee Dock. Math games, puzzles, chess, draughts, electronic games, strategy puzzles – nothing proved too difficult for the students. It was a fun experience and the feedback from the students and teachers involved was very positive. There are many benefits to this initiative – encourages strategic thinking, supports concept development, encourages independent work, increases motivation, differentiation and promotes positive attitude to math.

Literacy Initiative
All first year classes participated in a six week Literacy Initiative. The classes played scrabble and then finished with a play off between the groups. Each week the classes improve on their word/vocabulary skills.