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Newsletter Oct.16th

Maths Week   
Maths Week Ireland is a co-operative movement coordinated by Calmast at Waterford IT and works with schools and teachers nationally changing attitudes towards Maths. This year the initiative ran from October 10th-18th. The focus in DCW was highlighting that ‘Maths is Fun’. The students had lots of fun as they competed in the various maths challenges and activities both inside and outside the classroom. Problem-solving and logic became the universal theme in the maths classrooms, and much use was made of the iPads for puzzles and maths games. Every morning at registration, the tutors displayed the power points with the daily puzzle. Students recorded their solutions, competing with each other to win a prize. There were two prizes for each year group, one for the correct answers and one for participation. The first-year students also competed in a number hunt around their hub racing to answer the questions, work the Maths and solve the riddles. The Transition Year students enjoyed watching Maths themed films such as Hidden Figures and The Imitation Game. They were also tasked with researching a Maths problem. On the final day of Maths Week, the students became the teachers as they challenged their peers to solve their problems. Well done to all the students for their very positive engagement with all the activities.

Friendship Week
Congratulations to all the fifth-year Ember Leaders on coordinating the activities for Friendship Week. Colourful posters displaying inspirational friendship quotes were hanging on the corridors of all the different hubs. They designed profile questionnaires and distributed them among the first-year students. Using these profiles, they grouped students with similar interests taking note to group girls who came from different primary schools. On Wednesday morning, these groups bonded as they were given time out from the classroom to make friendship bracelets for each other. As students no longer sit in groups in class, this was an excellent way for the first-year’s to get to know more people. There was a lovely surprise for the teachers as well. Each year groups were asked to nominate a teacher that they would like to thank and give the reason why. Throughout the week, the Ember Leaders read the words of thanks over the intercom for all to hear. The teachers very much appreciated this gesture. The eleven fifth-year students showed excellent leadership skills, and we look forward to their next venture.

Second Year Retreat
On Thursday, October 15th 2 Sapphire and half of 2 Emerald had their retreat day. They had a short class from 9 am – 9.30 am then they headed to Fatima Hall to meet with The Tobar Retreat team. Throughout the day, they enjoyed team games and quizzes intermittent with thought-provoking conversations where they questioned their spirituality and religious beliefs. Living with COVID and the effects it had on their lives was one of the topical talks of the day. The reports from the students were very positive. They connected well with the young retreat team and thoroughly enjoyed the day.

Student Well Being
Management at DCW is very conscious that we are living in difficult circumstances. More than ever, we need to consider student and teacher well being. Following the very successful online bingo activity last month, it was decided that another non-academic activity would help to alleviate any unwanted stress. On Friday, October 16th classes were suspended from break time to lunchtime. The teachers and tutors worked together with their year groups to decorate the individual classrooms and hubs. Some year groups decided to take on a Halloween theme while some worked on a more personal theme that could remain in their classroom for the rest of the year. All the tutors, teachers and students got on board, resulting in some colourful and spooky creations.

Second Year CSPE Projects
This week the 2 Sapphire class took advantage of the beautiful October sunshine and worked outside on their CSPE projects. Their task is to investigate the connections between Sustainability and Fast Fashion. They are focusing on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, and we are very much looking forward to seeing their finished products.

Prayer Service
On Thursday, October 22nd Father Donal will join the school remotely to conduct a prayer service. This year due to COVID restrictions, the school community was unable to gather together for the annual Mass held at the beginning of the school year. The online prayer service was organised in place of the Mass. At the end of the service, the sixth-year leadership team will receive their badges. We wish them well in their leadership roles throughout the year.

Halloween Dress Up
It is nearly that time of year again for the whole school community to get into the Halloween spirit and dig out the spooky costumes. On Friday, October 23rd, both students and staff are asked to get creative and choose an outfit for dressing up. Students may dress up individually, or groups/classes may want to collaborate and share a theme. There will be prizes for the best costumes.

Homework Club
The Homework Club is now up and running once again. The club takes place every Wednesday and Friday at 1.15-1.55 pm in the library. It is open to all first-year students who may require a little extra help in certain areas. A group of dedicated Transition Year students act as tutors to the first years, sharing their knowledge and helping the new students to adjust to new subjects and homework regimes. So, to all the new first-year students, if you require any additional help with your homework, please feel free to drop in on any of the specified days.

Get Fresh Canteen
Don’t forget the re-opening of the Get Fresh canteen takes place on Monday, October 19th. To keep in line with COVID restrictions the canteen will now only operate an online service. Once you have purchased the €5 prepaid card, you can place your lunch order online up to midnight of the previous day. Log in details on the cards allow you access to the menus. We wish Russell and his crew the very best of luck with this new scheme.