Sept 17th – 21st 2012
September 2012 marked the seventh annual Dominican College Friendship Week. The aims of Friendship week are to educate students about bullying, how to avoid it and/or deal with it, to promote an atmosphere of respect and tolerance within each class, each year group and amongst the whole school community. Each year group has a tailor-made programme to suit the students' needs. This provides an opportunity for the students to 'bond' in a fun way, and to equip students to deal with the sensitivities of friendship and bullying, hopefully before difficulties arise.
During the week, students had an opportunity to learn a little more about one another. They had in-depth classes and discussions about the many different types of bullying. 3rd Year and 5th Year students watched different video clips, dramatisations and documentaries about bullying. Bully4u held a workshop for 5th years and the Samaritans spoke with them. The Blue Rose theatre performed a small drama about bullying and mental health for Transition Year students. 6th Year students received expert advice from Dr. Stephen Minton, a psychologist from TCD, about work place harassment, assertiveness skills and cyber bullying. 6th Years also enjoyed fun team building activities and a coffee morning. Each Year group finished the week with a class agreement of respect and kindness which hangs in each classroom in the school.
During the week, year groups went on a variety school trips. The 1st Year students enjoyed a fun-filled morning in the Botanic Gardens, an exciting colour themed lunch in the park and a challenging afternoon of games and team building activities in school. The students in 2nd Year had a trip to Dublin Zoo, 3rd Year students went to Dun Laoghaire for a day of water themed activities. The Transition Year students were very creative and put together a fashion show using only recycled materials from home. Some amazing, imaginative ensembles were put together. The 5th Year students went to Dollymount Strand where groups, competed in a sand sculpting competition. The hidden artistic talents of many of our students were revealed in many of the amazing sculptures.
To culminate the week's activities, last class on Friday, a whole school effort was made to write out the word Cairde on the football pitch. Each year group became one of the letters in the Irish word for friendship. Huge fun was had by all in attempting this feat!
Friendship Week is only one aspect of our anti-bullying policy. The whole school community must share in its implementation. We would like to take this opportunity to remind parents/guardians to encourage children to discuss all issues surrounding bullying opening at home. In particular, increased online activity creates increased opportunities for people to engage in a world that needs to be monitored very carefully. Although there has been a lot of recent publicity around this, it seems that many parents are still unaware of what their children are doing/saying/seeing online. This is a very serious issue and it is every parent's responsibility to monitor their children's online activities. If your daughter will not allow you to see her social networking site – you may not know what is being kept from you. Stay informed – keep your children safe.
The school has uploaded a "Parents' Guide to Facebook" on the Latest News and again on the computer page.
Creideann Coláiste San Dominic nach bhfuil slua de dhíth le daoine a chur ag labhairt i nGaeilge sa seomra foirne Is Leor Beirt
Tá tús curtha againn leis an chéad chiorcail chomhrá faoi theideal fheachtas Chonradh na Gaeilge Is Leor Beirt . Níl ag teastáil ach go mbuailfidh grúpa beag le chéile sa seomra foirne le comhrá le chéile i nGaeilge ar bhonn rialta. Cuireann na muinteoirí Gaeilge fáilte an domhain roimh dhaoine eile le spéis sa teanga. Cabhróidh Is Leor Beirt go mór le daoine ar an gcúpla focal an easpa muiníne agus an eagla roimh úsáid na Gaeilge a dhíbirt i gcomhluadar cairdiúil, amhfhoirmeálta.
During the month of August, two of our staff members, Faustina Moran and Michelle Stafford travelled to Cantabria, Spain to complete a two week professional development course at the Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo in Santander, undertaking a specialised course entitled "El uso de Las TIC en la clase de español" (The use of ICT in the Spanish classroom).
This Comenius course is funded by the European Union through Léargas, and both teachers were delighted to network with the other 28 teachers from around the European Union. But not only did our teachers take time to upskill in Cantabria this summer - our very own President Michael D Higgins, also undertook a general Spanish course at this University.
President Higgins attended a three-week general course, sharing a class with many students from Japan, Austria and Poland. As he role will take him to South America in a few months he wished to immerse himself in the language in Spain prior to this trip..
Transition Year students will have the opportunity to become involved in a DCU study on food and exercise behaviours over 2012/2013. The study by the School of Nursing & Human Sciences at DCU is exploring factors that influence young people to make decisions about food, exercise and lifestyle and how these choices impact on health. Sarah Browne is the main researcher and data collected will go towards her PhD thesis. There are a number of ways students can be involved.
The first part of the study is participatory, which means researchers will train some TY students to do their own research with students and on school grounds. The purpose of this is to find out the views of their peers and how food and exercise facilities are used during school hours. It is a great opportunity for peer researchers to learn some research skills and see what happens at university level projects.
All students can become part of the dietary analysis by keeping a four-day food diary. Weight, heights and waist circumferences, as well as fitness levels, will be measured by trained researchers to tell us more about students' health.
As well as hearing the views of young people, researchers are also very interested in hearing from teachers, parents and families. Sarah will run focus groups in each school with these groups to hear what they think influences the food and exercise choices of the teenagers they teach and live with every day.
All aspects of the study are fully confidential and no identifying information about any participant will ever be published.
For students who wish to be involved more information can be found on the study's facebook page - http://www.facebook.com/DCUYouthFoodFitnessStudy/info. Sarah will also come to speak with TY students and be fully supportive while the study is running in the school.
The TY team will have more information at their weekly assemblies.
Summer holidays provide a fantastic opportunity to catch up on some great books. Click on the appropriate link below for our recommended reading list for each year group. Read as many as you can during the summer - at least three - and we look forward to hearing all about them after the holidays.