November Blog

Ireland in WW1, Armistice Day and the Animals who helped during the War 

During WW1 Ireland was still part of Great Britain, 210,000 Irish men joined the British army to fight. It’s believed 35,000 lost their lives with 3,500 dying in the Battle of Somme in July 1916.

Some Irish soldiers took part in the Christmas Truce of 1914 when there was a spontaneous cessation in the killing for a short period.

World War 1 ended at 11am on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, in 1918. Germany signed an armistice (an agreement for peace and no more fighting) with Britain and France. We remember this day every year on Remembrance Sunday on the nearest Sunday to the 11th November. This year, the 11th actually falls on a Sunday. Many of us will wear red poppies  as a sign of respect for the military personnel who have died in war. But in recent years, you may notice that purple poppies have also worn.

Purple poppies commemorate the animals that were injured and those that lost their lives in conflict. 16 million animals were used in the war; they were used for transport, communication and companionship, unfortunately 8 million animals died. Horses were front line soldiers alongside their riders.

People wanting to show their respects for the animals lost in service over the years, and for those who serve us today by wearing a purple poppy.



We will commemorate Armistice Day with a little project on the Animals used in World War 1. We shouldn’t forget their invaluable help to the soldiers. We learnt about the horses, mules, camels, dogs, cats, pigeons and even the glow worms. We read about the mascots the soldiers had with their regiments, from kangaroos with the Australian Armies to the black bear with the Canadian troops. The black bear was called Winnipeg, and caught the eye of A.A. Milne’s son Christopher Robin, the bear was the inspiration to his Winnie the Pooh books.



We also learnt about the 65,000 Irish horses who were involved in World War 1, they had spent quiet lives working on Irish farms and were gathered up and sent to war. Many did not survive the cramped conditions on the boat over to the continent nor were they trained for war to pull heavy ammunition or supplies across war torn, muddy, dangerous lands. It is important not to forget them and many people are wearing purple poppies in memory of their heroic efforts.



Our Olive Tree 

The Right Reverend Dr. Paul Colton, our bishop of the Diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross has presented each school (primary and secondary) with an olive tree. An olive tree is the symbol of peace.

We will think of all those who fought in WW1 and other wars, those that died , those that survived and those that were changed forever. we will also pray for wars that are still going on at the moment and for the people of Yemen who are starving due to the fighting in their country.. We have a special assembly prepared for us from the Bishop’s office written by Jacqui Wilkinson.


Armistice Assembly November 2018

On 9th November we had our Armistice Assembly in remembrance of the End of World War 1. First we sung “Make me a Channel of your Peace”

Then Tadhg and Devyn brought  our olive tree to the front of the assembly and our teacher explained why we have a present of it.

olive tree 1

As part of the Cork, Cloyne and Ross Centenaries Commemoration and Reconciliation Project we marked the forthcoming Centenary of Armistice Day, 1918 by having this assembly.  The olive tree, has been given as a gift to each school by our Bishop, The Right Reverend Doctor Paul Colton, Bishop of Cork, Cloyne and Ross., The olive tree is a powerful symbol of peace and friendship going all the way back to Ancient Greek times. We read in the Bible about the dove who brought an olive branch back to the ark. Today we use the phrase “to extend the olive branch”, to indicate that we are offering peace or reconciliation”, putting out the hand of peace to resolve a fight or argument. we then had our Olive Tree Assembly, where staff and pupils took part, reading parts of it.

Two pupils brought in some special items for our assembly. Devyn brought in a WW1 shell and some iron pellets. Harry brought in a picture of his great Grandfather who fought in WW1



We commemorated Armistice Day with a little project on the Animals used in World War 1. We shouldn’t forget their invaluable help to the soldiers. Isabel, Harry and Martha wrote their own words on our project and read them out for everybody. here are some of our staff and pupils at our assembly.



We also looked at War Horse, This is based on a true story, the book is set in WW1 and it’s about Joey, a farm horse who has a great attachment to the young lad on the farm. The horse is sold to the army and is sent to fight in World War 1. In the book, you witness the horror of the war through the horse’s eyes, and the soldiers see the courage and strength of this beautiful brave horse.During the week we have watched a little of the theatre production of War Horse and learnt how the mechanical horse moves and breathes like a real horse.

michael morpourgo war horse


Mrs Smith recalls the story behind “War Horse”. It was a horse called Warrior from the Isle of Wight. General Jack Seely rode him in  WW1, through battles, destruction, despair, lucky escapes etc. and both survived to the end of the war and returned to the Isle of Wight. Where Jack continued to ride Warrior, include race him , until he died in 1941 at the great old age for a horse of 33.

Warrior Paperback

Mrs Smith showed us a “Princess Mary Gift Box”,  they were a brass or silver tin, containing a number of gifts for the soldiers spending their first year abroad, fighting  in the trenches at Christmas.

princess mary gift box

We finished our assembly by singing “One Day” by Matisyahu, this is a reggae song written as an anthem of hope and peace.  It has given comfort and been sung at vigils of human loss.


The Animals who fought and died in World War 1, We will not Forget them, They had no Choice

We looked at the “Animals in War Memorial” in Hyde Park London which has three 3 inscriptions

  • “This monument is dedicated to all the animals that served and died alongside British and allied forces in wars and campaigns throughout time.”
  • “They had no choice.”
  • Their contribution must never be forgotten.”

RTE 1 had a radio broadcast (August 2014), which can be heard on podcast “They had no Choice – The Irish Horse at War”

The PDSA Dickin Medal, is recognised as the highest award an animal can achieve while serving in military conflict. Many animals received this award for their brave efforts in WW1. “Warrior” was the first animal from World War 1, who received  the medal.

pdsa medal


Other World War 1 activities and information we learnt during the week

We watched the Sainsbury’s Christmas Advert from 2014, which brought us back to the Christmas Truce of 2014, when the soldiers of both sides on the Western Front held a day of peace and exchanged Christmas greetings, stories and played football. We also listened to Garth Brookes “Bealleu Wood” a very haunting song set on the story of the Christmas Truce.

christmas truce part b 1914


Kick Boxing :

We had four weeks of Kick Boxing classes with Tony Stephenson from the West Cork Kick Boxing Club.  He taught them many skills in Kick Boxing including some basic self-defence. The pupils really enjoyed themselves especially when Tony showed them his European Kick Boxing medal.


Art : Penguin Silhouettes

We paint washed backgrounds in pinks and oranges on A3 paper. We drew penguins on black paper and cut them out and placed the silhouettes on the washed backgrounds. The effect was very stunning.

October 2018

Happy Birthday

It was Gabrielle’s Birthday at the beginning of October, she had a lovely cake.

Happy Birthday Gabrielle.


Art : Autumn Leaves

We went outside to examine the beautiful Autumn leaves that we have in our school grounds. We collected leaves such as Sycamore and Fern and halved the leaves, examining the veins. Taking great care we drew the other half of the leaves.

Not an easy task! So well done to all!


Breakfast Week

We had our breakfast week in October, it’s a great week to get together and have food and chat before the school day commences.

 school breakfast



We are delighted to be doing Tag Rugby again this year under the guidance of Branson Waaka, our Youth trainer from the Bandon Rugby Club. Tag Rugby will continue for 6 months with an inter schools fun Rugby Blitz at the end of the season.



Choir Singing

Once again we joined other schools for a morning of choral singing in Bandonbridge. We are very lucky to have the expertise of Dr. Peter Stobart directing and playing for us. Our latest new song is “Why We Sing”, by Greg Gilpin.

 choir singing



After our morning singing, we returned to school to make yummy flapjacks with oats, golden syrup, brown sugar and butter. Delicious. A great way to end the day.

 flap jacks


Readathon for MS

We are doing the Readathon this year to encourage reading for fun and hopefully encourage more pupils to love reading. Already we have seen more pupils interested in reading and telling us what they are reading and how many pages they read last night. We are delighted with their interest.

The first Readathon began in 1988 when the well-loved children’s author Roald Dahl launched the first ever campaign.

Now the MS Readathon is celebrating its 30th birthday with hundreds of thousands of children taking part each year.

MS Ireland would like to say a huge thank you to all the young readers for their efforts over the years to help people with Multiple Sclerosis by taking part and raising vital funds for our services.



Soil Project

We spent some time this month doing experiments on soil. Three families brought in soil samples. We did 5 experiments and then put all our findings on a big poster in the hall.

Exp.1 : How much water is in soil

Exp.2 : How well the soil drains

Exp.3 : The Ph of the soil

Exp.4 : Drying some soil to see what it is made up of

Exp.5 : the different layers of soil

 soil 1



RE : Church Exteriors

Our recent RE chapter was about looking at church exteriors, we went on the internet and looked at modern and old churches, traditional and unusual ones, Irish and international ones. it was a fascinating few days, to see buildings so aesthetically pleasing. We then looked at St. Fin Barres Cathedral, both inside and out and saw the similarities and differences from York Minister: stained glass windows, rose windows etc.

Both had the wow factor, in different ways!

Finally we designed our own unique church door, we looked at other doors on the internet and designed our own, either from ones seen or completely form our heads. Here are some of their Art work.


(more photos to follow)


SESE : Roman Times

For two weeks we looked at the life of the Ancient Romans, we learnt about their fantastic road building skills and how they heated their houses. The pupils learnt about Romulus and Remus, roman numerals, the social life of the roman baths and the competitiveness of athletes at the Circus Maximus. We also watched videos on the Colosseum and Pompeii.  The one on Pompeii was fascinating, it was seeing the eruption over 24 hours and the total devastation it caused.


On Youtube, there is a fantastic 8 minute animation on 24 hours in Pompeii, it has no speaking just sound effects and very educational and dramatic.

The one thing we all agreed on, we would not like to be out of favour and be fighting in the Colosseum, it was cruel and often fatal. We were fascinated by the sailors’ sails which were erected and used to give shade over the Colosseum, a bit like a retractable roof today.


colosseum 2

We learnt about the different rooms in a roman villa, ie the triclinium (dining room) the tablinium (living room), the culina (kitchen) and cubiculum (bedroom). The pupils then designed their own roman bath house ajoinimg the main house, with hot, warm and cool rooms and a boiler room to heat the water.

roman rooms



We have started doing our own mosaics as we learnt about mosaics in Roman times. It is a time consuming activity but very therapeutic and the pupils viewed a lot of mosaic ideas and went off to plan their own mosaic with great results, this project will continue after Halloween as it will take many classes to finish.

 (photos to follow)


Halloween Mandalas

Each child designed their own individual Halloween Mandalas. We think these are fantastic, the level of drawing and the colouring are of a very high standard.



Halloween : Last Day of Term

We had a dress up day in aid of “Trick or Treat, Temple Street”, raising money for vital equipment for the children’s hospital. Then we had a few fun Halloween activities and games, followed by an afternoon of making our own pizzas. It was a great end to the Autumn Term and a well-deserved rest for all.

temple street logo 2

(more photos to follow)

September 2018

Art : Word Onomatopoeia Art

We looked at onomatopoeia words that we liked and wrote them in the middle of a sheet of paper and added sharp lines and patterns. Then we painted them with striking, vibrant colours. We gave a three dimension effect with a sharpie pen. They looked brilliant in the end.


Baking : Apple Crumble and Banana Muffins

The school has a well equipped kitchen and we have been doing baking this month, firstly we have made apple crumble, we picked the apples from our big apple tree at the back of the school and stewed these apples. Then we made the crumble and put a small handful of oats into the mixture to give it crunch and texture. The finished produce was yummy.

Near the end of the month we made banana muffins from over ripe bananas, the recipe is so simple but it produce the best muffins, that are so light and moreish.




banana muffins


SESE: Storms, Hurricanes, Typhoon and Volcanoes

(The only difference between a typhoon and a hurricane is the location where the storm occurs)


We spent some time learning about the hurricanes around the world, one weekend there were three hurricanes and storms, Ireland had Storm Ali,  Hurricane Florence hit North and South Caroline and a mega Typhoon Mangkhut hit the Philippines. We learnt that the Philippines has 7107 islands, that is a lot of islands!


This week we also read about a brewing volcano in Iceland, which is being watched as they feel it could erupt any time and then it will cause a lot of disruption, it is called Katla, at least this is an easier name from the explosive volcano of 2010 which disrupted European air traffic, it was called “Eyjafjallajokull”.

volcano Katla

They great thing about studying “real life Geography”, is that the pupils learn where countries are, what seas/oceans are near them, they learn about storm paths etc.

We read about the new names for Irish and British storms for the year 2018-2019and each pupil spent time making their own posters showing all the names on it in alphabetical form. Starting with Ali, Bronagh and Callum and ending with Tristan, Violet and Wyn.



Art : I’m dreaming of

We designed I’m dreaming posters in Art Class. We first discussed what we might dream about in class, what we want to achieve this year and what our interest/hobbies are. We posed in a day dreaming pose and added our very own photo to our drawings.



Beginning of Year Church Service

We joined all the other Church of Ireland primary schools in the Diocese for a beginning of year service. This year the sermon was led by Rev Canon Paul Willoughby who theme was “It’s a Small World after All”, and the high point of the sermon was the massive balloon he sent around the church to be bounced from group to group, pew to pew. The pupils went mad to touch it and pass it on.

church cross


Art : Burst of Colour 3D

We made large, thick snail shapes and cut them out. Then we made a lot of long thin triangles in many colours and stuck them on to the edges of the smail to give a 3D effect. You don’t have to cover all the surface of the snail curves, nor do you have to build a pattern, it is just a load of colour coming out at you. They took a lot of work and concentration but it is an activity suitable for all ages.

 (photos to follow)


Ardagh Chalice Competition 

We participated in an Art competition  from the National Museum of Ireland, to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the finding of the Ardagh Chalice. we had to colour and decorate our own Ardagh Chalices and our pictures are on display in the museum.



RE : Ruth and Gathering Grain

We read the story of Naomi and her daughter-in-law Ruth and how Boaz let Ruth gleam (the act of collecting leftover crops from the fields) grain from his fields.

We painted in our own sheaves of corn on a photocopy. Then we decorated the ears with rice and tied string around the bundle. They look stunning.



August Bank Holiday Weekend

We were delighted for our school to be a refreshments stop for “Walk While You Can”, a charity group led by Fr. Tony Coote, who recently was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease. The group travelled from Letterkenny to Ballydehob from July 10th to August 6th.

Motor Neurone is under-funded and under researched; the group hoped this fund-raising walk would put the disease back in the spotlight.

Walking with Fr Tony Coote in aid of Motor Neurone Research and supports

Walking with Fr Tony Coote in aid of Motor Neurone Research and supports

Walking with Fr Tony Coote in aid of Motor Neurone Research and supports

Walking with Fr Tony Coote in aid of Motor Neurone Research and supports

June Blog 2018

Cork City Sports
Our school did fantastically at Cork City Sports in CIT on Friday 1st June. We brought eight pupils and they tried their very best, ran their hardest and got great experience on the day, they also behaved exemplary, well done to all eight pupils.

We had 2 firsts, a second and a third in the heats, these pupils all got plaques for their efforts. The two pupils who got first, Vicki and Calum, went on to the quarter finals and then got through to the county finals. They were up against tough competition and did very well.

We had four boys in the boys relay team and they won their race, they got each got a plaque and a big one for the school.

We are very proud of our pupils and their achievements. Well done.

Our Sports Day
Thank you to all our pupils who took part in Sports Day and to all the parents who turned up and supported our day and to those who joined in the Tug of War competition.

Our pupils represent different teams and each race they take part in (the individual ones first, then the group ones) give points to their overall team result.

athletics group

Our Nature Walk
We enjoyed a wood river walk with our guide Calvin Jones, he is editor of Ireland’s Wildlife and founder of Ireland’s Wildlife Tours. He is a mind of information and has an interesting way of putting his information across to all ages, he sees everything from “cuckoo spit, to badger scratchings to buzzards”.

We are very grateful to Pat and David for allowing us to access their woods, we are thankful also to Ella and Eva for extending the hand of friendship to our pupils. Ella, thank you very much, for showing us the tadpoles and frogs.

We walked and talked and had lunch, then walked and talked some more, you don’t realise the questions you have till you are out in nature and see things you don’t have answers for.


Projects on Waterford and Dublin
Well done Tadhg and Devyn for tall the hard work you put into your school projects, the research, the typing, the layout ….. Well done Lads. A big shout out for Mr. Ryan who helped you all the way with the project.

Our Clay Models
Our clay models took about a month to make, dry and paint. Here are the finished results.

Kick Boxing Lesson
We were very grateful to Tony from the West Cork Kick boxing Club for coming to our school. The pupils learnt a lot and really enjoyed themselves.

It is great to see someone who competes very successfully at international level come to the school and talk about why he got into kick boxing in the first place and then the hard work that it takes to reach the standard that he is at. The pupils had great fun practising some of the basic kick boxing moves with him.

It was very surprising that the tentative kick at the beginning of the lesson turned into a well-executed on target hard kick at the end of the lesson.


amie’s Birthday
Jamie celebrated his birthday with us near the end of the school year.
Happy Birthday Jamie


Father’s Day
We celebrated Father’s Day on Sunday 17th June by making Father’s Day cards.

Ice Cream Afternoon for the Down Syndrome Association
Every year we support Ice Cream Day for Down Syndrome. Who doesn’t love ice cream, with loads of toppings, sprinkles, sauces, chocolate, jellies ….. and it’s for a very good cause.


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Orienteering and Parachute Day
We enjoyed finishing off the school year by having an orienteering course around the school grounds and followed by parachute games. It was a hectic morning but very enjoyable.

Well Done Harry on being in school every day of the year, no days absent …….. well done.

The Summer is Here
We would like to wish our sixth class students all the best as they venture in to secondary school, new buildings, new teachers, new classes and new friends. You will be grand!

We would also like to wish everyone an enjoyable and safe summer, mind yourselves on the roads, on the farms and in the water. Stay Safe!


May Blog 2018

Martha’s Birthday 

At the beginning of May, we celebrated Martha’s birthday at school, she brought in a beautifully designed cake.

Happy Birthday Martha.


P1040603 (2)


People Drawing 

four steps to drawing people.

Step 1 Draw matchstick people,

Step 2 : Putting muscle on the matchstick people

Step 3 : Putting the clothing on the people

Step 4 : Tidying up the people and the full background picture, facial features, hair etc.


Well Done Boys

We had two boys did their first Communion this month, well done Calum and Devyn.



Rugby Blitz 15th May

Our pupils were among 500 pupils who had a very successful day at the Rugby Blitz organised by Bandon Rugby Club. Our students got lots of playing time, they played well as a team, passing to each other and looking out for each other.  They all received wrist bands afterwards for their participation and a yummy hotdog. We would like to thank the Rugby Club for the years of work they have put into organising this annual event, for organising a rugby coach to come out to the school weekly and teach rugby skills

Thanks to Santi, the Youth Officer at Bandon Rugby Club for all his time, commitment and training skills.




School Tour to West Cork Secret 16th May

On Wednesday we went to West Cork Secret just outside Kilbrittain.  It was an action packed day. First we went down to the pond to find insects, water beetles, frogspawn etc.

After that we had some teambuilding exercises, making our way across boards and milking the artificial cows, to see which team could get the most liquid into a tube. Then we did a jigsaw game, where we had to run and get the pieces bring them back and make the jigsaw.  We had a game of giant skis where 4 students were on each team and had to move the skis across the fiend in unison. The most favourite part of the team building exercise was the go karting. Here you had to do a circuit and grab a cloth or a pole along the way and then the points were counted up at the end.

Then the mucky part, there were three obstacle course, each more difficult than the one before.  These involved going into water and going up and down slides, under and over poles etc. the last water event was the big water slide. It was massive but they had fantastic fun on it.

After all the mud and water, the pupils had a very welcome hot shower and pizza, lots and lots of pizza. The afternoon events were centred on map reading, quizzes and orienteering.

It was a long but very active day.





Choir Workshop in Skibbereen

We travelled down to Abbeystrewry Primary School just outside Skibbereen for our third Choir workshop under the tuition of Mr. Peter Stobart, the Director of the Diocesan Church Music Scheme.  On the way back we had our lunch at the play park in Skibbereen. It has been lovely visiting other school

 choir singing


Athletic Practise

We would like to thank Ann Crowley for all her help in training our pupils for Cork City Sport. We would also like to thank Ahiohill GAA Pitch for allowing us practise up there and also Bandon Grammar who gave us permission to use their sprint running track.

Ann has dedicated her time to train some of our boys and girls for Cork City Sports, she teaches then the best start and finish positions, how to change batons, simple warm up and cool down exercise and she is oozing with encouragement. Thank you Ann.


Prayer leaves

All the children took part in a religion lesson where they made a prayer leaf for the chapel in CUH. In the chapel there is a prayer tree that patients can visit and their artistic leaves will be added to the tree.




The children had the chance to recycle all the boxes and toilet rolls we’ve accumulated over the year in their art class. They constructed all sort of houses from the materials.


Second World War Art

We have been drawing pictures of actors, actresses, singers, comedians, cartoon characters etc. from World War 2 era.  We drew them using the box method, we were very impressed with the end result. Well done guys.


Clay Models 

We spent many weeks working on clay models, first we made wire stick men then we bulked them out with clay, forming the body and facial features. the next step was adding clothing and hair. these models took over 4-5 hours to make. Then they had to dry for 3 weeks, we have 3 models from “Fortnite”, a farmer ( a pupil’s Dad) and a rugby guy.

After the clay dried out it was time for painting (another hour or two) and we needed to do many layers of paint and varnishing was the last step.


Talk on Internet Safety 25th May

We were delighted to welcome back Irene from McAfee to give a talk to all the school regarding internet safety. She talked to all the school about protecting ourselves online, giving out information, using passwords, using free wifi in cafes, communicating with others, etc

Online Security Protection Internet Safety Guard Lock Concept