Blog March 2018

Texaco Art Competition : Gridded Drawings

For the Texaco Art contest, we drew some of our favourite celebrities. Some were athletes, some were musicians and some were actors.  We drew grids on photographs of these celebrities and then drew larger grids onto larger sheets of paper. We carefully drew what we saw in the photographs onto our A3 sheets. We worked with pencils to get the outline of our celebrity right but also to shade in the shadows onto their faces. Here are some of our pictures.


Engineering Week

We watched a video called “Big Dreams”, it was about all the different ways engineers help us in our world, from tall buildings, to suspended bridges, solar cars and underwater robots. It gave us a new insight into the world of engineers and how they are encouraging children and teenagers to be young engineers themselves and make changes in the world.

The pupils were divided into groups for two engineering experiments, but due to the snow we didn’t get all our plans completed and hope to get more engineering experiments done in the near future.

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Experiment 1

You get 10 sheets of A4 paper, sellotape, scissors etc.

Experiment : You must make the tallest free standing building from your 10 sheets and it must stand without any help for 15 seconds.


Experiment 2

You will have one egg per group and lots of recyclable material, sellotape, scissors, balloons, bubble wrap etc.

Experiment : You must drop the egg from a height of 6ft and it must not crack or break. Use all available resources to give the egg a safe landing. (what will work, what won’t, etc)


Cork County Primary Schools Athletics Programme 2018

We are delighted to be part of the first phase of the Cork County Primary Schools Athletics programme 2018.The programme will consist of 4 weekly, hour long sessions commencing in February which will be followed by an Athletics Blitz, 15th March in Neptune Stadium from 10am -2pm

  • Wed Feb 14th, Wed Feb 21st ,  Wed Feb 28th ,  Wed Mar 7th
  • Blitz 15th March (uniform needed)



The children painted beautiful paintings of colourful butterflies on the horizon. It was a good learning activity to ingrain the idea of what the word horizon means. Prior to the lesson we also watched the life cycle of a butterfly.



Mother’s Day

We baked ginger snap biscuits for Mother’s Day. We made the dough on Thursday and put it in the fridge. On Friday we took it out of the fridge for 1/2hr to get used to room temperature and then we sliced the biscuits thinly and placed them on a many baking trays. They cook in a preheated oven (160-180) until they were brown in colour. We took the tray out and left the biscuits to cool before transferring them to a wire cooling tray. This is important as they become crispy underneath.

Recipe :

  1. Wet ingredients 135g butter

135g Golden Syrup

(Melt gently together in a microwave or in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water on simmer)

  1. Then add in 105g Demerara sugar
  2. After that add in 2-3 teaspoon of stem ginger juice (from the jar), mix well
  3. Mix these dry ingredients together : 300g plain flour

2 teasp mixed spices/ground ginger

1 and ½ teasp bicarbonate soda

4 teasp baking powder

  1. Dice 3-4 stem ginger pieces, then add to the dry ingredients and mix well (but with light fingers)
  2. Mix the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients and make into two long dough shapes.
  3. Wrap in cling film and leave in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight.
  4. When ready to make the ginger snaps, take the dough out of the fridge 30mins before use, to get room temperature.
  5. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees for 20-30 mins
  6. Line 3 baking tins with greaseproof paper
  7. Slice the dough thinly and place spaced apart on the trays.
  8. Cook for 7-10 mins until a ginger brown colour.
  9. Leave to cool in the tray for 5 mins and then move to wire trays to firm up the base of the biscuits.


Mother’s Day Cards

The children made Mother’s Day cards with the caption.  “This is to remind you when I am taller what I was like when I was smaller” Hopefully they will be kept for posterity.


March 15th Athletics Blitz 

We had a great day taking part in the Athletics Blitz in the Neptune Stadium.  we did the longjump, the speedbounce, the javelin, the shuttle run and the target throw, finishing with a relay.  We got back to the school just at closing time.




St Patrick’s Day Craft

The younger pupils made St. Patrick on a paper plate.

The older pupils made lovely bookmarks for family and friends.



Child Protection In-service Training : two half days in total (school closes at 12noon)

  • Friday 16th March ((leading into the St Patrick’s Weekend)
  • Friday 23rd March (leading in the Easter Holidays)

 child protection


Mon 19th March : Patrick’s Day  (as 17th falls on a Saturday, Monday is the Bank Holiday)

  • We are closed for the weekend and on Monday.

 st patricks day


Easter Activities

Some of the pupils made lovely colourful Easter hats.

We had an Easter egg hunt around the school grounds before we went home for our holidays. It always creates great excitement.


Monday 26th March to Friday 6th April  : Easter Holidays

  • School closed for two weeks for Easter holidays.

happy easter



we are open for enrollment, you can phone, email or call to the school to make an appointment, We will give you a tour of the school and talk you through any queries/questions you may have.


We are a country school with small friendly classes, so are in a position to give immediate help where and when needed.  In addition to the curriculum we do many extra activities: Zumba, Tag Rugby, Cork Athletics, Cork Sports, a Geography Trip to Inchydoney Beach every September, a Halloween Party, Pancake Day, Easter Egg Hunt, Tours and Nature Walks. We enjoy cookery classes in the kitchen and we have a passion for Arts and Crafts. Please check this blog for information on further events and activities.

school building photo

School Closure

Wednesday 28th February, Thursday 1st March and Friday 2nd March

Due to hazardous road conditions and for the safety of all concerned Desertserges National School will not be opening today, Wednesday 28th February. This will continue for Thursday 1st March and Friday 2nd March.

ALL schools and colleges in Leinster and Munster are to remain closed on Thursday and Friday, the Department of Education has confirmed.

A status RED – Severe weather warning has been issued for Thursday and Friday.

Officials have decided to close schools and colleges in the two provinces for safety reasons as freezing conditions continue to grip Ireland. Unnecessary journeys are to be avoided, as blizzard like conditions are expected.

picture ice and snow





February 2018

Saint Brigid’s Cloak

The children worked well in a collaborative effort to create a lovely Saint Brigid’s cloak in honour of Saint Brigid’s Day on February 1st. This art lesson was linked to maths (2d shapes) by incorporating those shapes into the cloak design.




Project Work

we are doing two different projects in the school this term,  one group are doing projects on chosen counties of Ireland (Dublin, Cork, Kildare etc).  The other group are doing a project on World War 2. we hope to have these projects finished by Easter. There is a lot of work involved, research, writing, typing, presenting, etc.


Internet Safety Day 6th February : Leaflet : 5 Things We Need to Talk About

Cyber Safe Ireland have produced a leaflet with the support of Tusla and the Children and Young Person’s Services Committee (CYPSC) that will provide some helpful conversation starters for schools/parents to have with children about online safety. Below are the important points on the leaflet please have a talk with your family about these points.


  • Don’t share personal information like your email address or date of birth.
  • Turn ON privacy settings to protect your stuff.
  • Don’t add people you don’t know.
  • Turn OFF location sharing.
  • If you wouldn’t share with a stranger on the street, don’t share it publicly online


  • Think about how much information you are sharing online.
  • A comment that you leave on someone’s page or what you post when out with friends, may not give the best impression of you.


  • If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, don’t say it online.
  • Be the same person online as you would be in real life.
  • Beware fake profiles. Other people may not be who they say they are.


  • Find a healthy balance with screen time. The Internet is designed to be addictive.
  • Avoid gaming or any screen time for at least an hour before bedtime.
  • The number of ‘likes’ you get does not define you as a person.


  • You can always talk to me if you are worried or uncomfortable about anything online.
  • Tell me about what you like online, and what you don’t like.
  • Sometimes you won’t know the best thing to do. Don’t simply react – talk it over first with an adult you trust

cyber safe ireland 2018


Alex and Vicki’s Birthday

It was Alex and Vicki’s birthday on Friday, we sang happy birthday and they brought in a lovely chocolate, marshmallow chocolate birthday cake.



Winter Olympics

The Winter Olympics started on Friday 9th February in Pyeonchang in Korea, we did lots of Olympic activities today.  Some classes did Olympic work in their maths classes. We read about the different events and looked at little videos of the sports. Then for Art class some of the pupils drew a poster of all the events. The whole school is putting a big frieze together of the Olympic events, we are covering the little characters in tinfoil. It looked very effective at the end.


We have 5 athletes in the Winter Olympics :

  • Brendan Bubba Newby : in the free ski half-pipe event
  • Séamus O’Connor: in the snowboarding half-pipe event.
  • Pat McMillan: in the Alpine Ski (Giant Slalom), Super-G & Downhill events.
  • Tess Arbez : in the Alpine Ski (Slalom) and Giant Slalom will be the focus of her attentions.
  • Thomas Westgard : In the Nordic event

irish winter olympic team


Pancake Day

We had Pancake Day today. We made 4 big batches of the pancake mixture following Mary Berry’s recipe. Some of us enjoy lemon and sugar on our pancakes and some of us love to put Nutella on our pancakes


Valentine’s Day

For Valentines‘s Day, it’s nice to give make little tokens and given them to our parents, brothers, sisters, guardians. It’s a way of saying “Thank you” for looking after me.


Mid Term

We are closed Thursday 16th and Friday 17th February for Half Term

february half term


Cork County Primary Schools Athletics Programme 2018

We are delighted to be part of the first phase of the Cork County Primary Schools Athletics programme 2018.The programme will consist of 4 weekly, hour long sessions commencing in February which will be followed by an Athletics Blitz, 15th March in Neptune Stadium from 10am -2pm

  • Wed Feb 21st , Wed Feb 28th ,  Wed Mar 7th,  Wed March 14th,
  • Blitz 15th March (uniform needed)

January 2018

Tadhg’s Birthday

Tadhg was our first student to have a birthday in 2018. He brought in a lovely birthday cake. Happy Birthday Tadhg!



Backdrop for Clay work

The children in the junior room read Under the Hawthorn Tree last term. These clay figures were inspired by the stories characters and the children enjoyed making a suitable backdrop for all their figures. (photos to follow)



Working with fabric

The children had fun making their names from fabric and decorating the surroundings as they saw fit. They were delighted with their finished products.


Fabric Work including (adjective & alliteration)

The children created a costume from a variety of fabrics to create a character including an adjective and alliteration in their characters name.



Peace Prayer

We looked at the prayer “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change ………….” and designed our own poster using the same words.  We had a big discussion on what we can and can’t change.


Colour Wheels

The Senior pupils have spent many weeks making posters of colour wheels. They have painted the primary, secondary and tertiary colours, the pairing of colours to make secondary colours and another section was cold and warm colours. They look absolutely stunning when finished.


Pride and Prejudice


pride adn prejudice 1

The Seniors’ have just finished reading Pride and Prejudice. It has taken us three months. It has been an interesting journey through the book, looking at the different characters, how they change, who we would like to play in the book. We discussed whether we would like to live back in the Regency period. Who had a harder life back then, a female or a male? We watched the film version of Pride and Prejudice and aside from the main characters, we really enjoyed the pompous, foolish Mr. Collins and the stern controlling incredibly arrogant Lady Catherine de Bourgh.

pride adn prejudice 3

December Blog 2017

Carol Service

Our School Carol service was on the 3rd December at Kinneigh Church. The pupils were dressed very smart in their uniform. They did all the readings, the mini plays and took the collection. Three beautiful songs were sung by the pupils, “Come and Join the Celebration”, “Away in a Manger” and “Sing”.

carol service 3


Our Christmas Meal

The oldest pupils in the school, helped to cook a meal for everybody. We did roast chicken, mash potatoes, broccoli, Carrots, green beans and lovely gravy.

For dessert we had meringues and cream. It was great to share a meal all together and have lots of lovely food.

While we prepared the food, the younger pupils decorated the Christmas tree.




Collecting Food for the Cork Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

We have been raising awareness in our school of the plight of unwanted animals this winter. We gathered animal food (dog, cat etc) in our school. Many people outside of the school heard about our collection and donated food to us to pas on to the centre, in the end we had gathered a lot of much needed food. Miss Willis delivered the food to the centre, they were so thankful as food levels were low.

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Christmas Theatres

Over the past few weeks th4 children in Miss Willis’ classroom have been making beautiful crafts. They designed and made their own theatres with a Nativity scene. Take a look at the lovely finished pieces.



Lollipop Bird Houses

Many pupils made ornamental bird houses out of lollipop sticks. We used lots of bostic and layers of lollipop sticks. We made the base first and then we made the roof in two parts. Then we constructed the house. The houses needed to dry and stick overnight and then we painted them. They looked beautiful.


Christmas Candle Glasses

We decorated glasses with fancy paper, ribbon and sparkly dots. Then we put glitter sand and a candle in the glass. They were very effective.

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Christmas Winter Scene

Mr Ryan did Christmas winter scenes. They painted blue skies, mixing white and black to vary the darkness of the sky. They mixed yellow and blue to create different greens for our trees created from paper plates. Our trees stood out in a field of snow after gluing the segments of paper plates on.

The end results were stunning.


Christmas Calendars

We have made beautiful Christmas calendars for our friends and family. First we coloured in a picture of a dog because 2018 is the Chinese Year of the Dog.  Then we added a calendar for the year and thirdly we laminated the sheet. The calendars looked very impressive.

The dog theme linked in with our support for the CSPCA (food collection).




Christmas Reindeer

The children made reindeer during Christmas week from paper plates and handprints. The reindeer supported a range of different coloured noses as we didn’t want a whole load of Rudolphs.



Christmas Concert

Our Christmas Concert is just around the corner, we have been practising a play called “Where There’s a Will”. We have some Christmas poems and rhymes and the pupils will be singing three songs, “Somewhere in my Memory”, “The 12 Days of Christmas” and “Sing” by Gary Barlow.

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Happy Christmas

We at Desertserges National School, would like to wish you all a very happy and safe Christmas.  We re-open on January 8th.

merry christmas

November Blog 2017

Native Irish Wildlife Workshop

We had a visit from Niamh O’Flynn, from the Heritage and Schools Scheme who gave us a half day workshop on our native animals and birds. She talked about her life and her passion for nature. She had boxes of different feathers and eggs. She got the pupils sketching and they went outside to listen for birds and watch their movements.



School Photos

We had our school photo this month. we had a serious photo taken and then we did one where we messed about.


Music Workshop

Peter Stobart, the music director from St Fin Barres Cathedral organised some choir workshops in November for schools in West Cork. We attended the one in Bandonbridge School. There were four different groups of children altogether from different schools. He taught the children how to breathe properly when singing. He taught three simple songs individually and then mixed the three together beautifully, with different groups coming in at different times.

music image


Our Class Motto

As part of one of our SPHE lessons, the pupils agreed on a class motto. They all stamped their handprint on it to show their commitment.



Art Class : Silhouettes

Silhouette work was finished with gusto last week. The children’s work is now finished and on show on our classroom walls.


Art : Michelangelo

We looked at the life of Michelangelo and his early life.  Then we looked at the Sistine Chapel and the full layout of all the panels. The pupils had two challenges:

  • they did a lesson of painting upside down under their desks with the sheet of paper attached to the under part of the desk. They soon realised that this was extremely difficult and dangerous for their eyes etc. and they only did it for 10 minutes, Michelangelo too four years to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
  • The pupils had to do the picture of “The Creation of Adam”, where the two hands stretch out to meet each other.



Art : Vincent Van Gogh

The older pupils were looking at the life of Vincent Van Gogh. It was very interesting to look at his style of painting.  He painted the Bedroom Scene at Arles many times over a few years, this got the pupils to see that he “tried and tried again till he got it right”, so that was good inspiration for them. The pupils painted his bedroom scene, with only five basic paint colours, black and white and the three primary colours (red, blue and yellow). They had to mix colours to get the shades that they wanted for the different parts of the picture.



Shading and Mountain Paintings

Mr. Ryan took the children in groups and he got them to perfect the art of shading. They experimented with different shading pencils. They created contrasting buildings of pitch black in the foreground that got lighter and lighter as they faded into the background.

Making the dark buildings in the foreground was some challenge but the children found the task got easier as they went on, until they were barely using their pencils to shade in the smaller buildings in the distance.

We then put the pencils away and started painting mountains instead of buildings. The mountains were painted a variety of mixed colours but darker colours were used for the foreground and lighter colours were used to do the mountains in the background. The children were able to explain how the colours influenced the perspective with the dominant colours up front and how things in the distance look faded.