In spite of the rain today Junior Infants managed to get out to Sallyglen where they enjoyed a different version of forest school. We are fortunate to be situated right beside the meadow in Sallyglen with easy access to trees and hedgerows. The children played many games using dandelions, ‘soldiers’ and other wild flowers, and made bird sounds to communicate.

Communication throughout the school community has been challenging due to Covid restrictions yet the current situation enables us to reflect on what practices are helpful and what needs to be changed for the new school year. Hearing positive stories and receiving appreciative emails from parents uplifts and sustains staff in a year that has turned educational practice upside down.

“many thanks to you and all the staff for all your hard work. I never really got the chance to thank our children’s teachers properly after the last lock down… As a family who grew up in a socially disadvantaged area, my siblings and I are acutely aware of the opportunity that a good education gave us. Teachers are real hero’s in my eyes. Never underestimate the positive influence you can have in a child’s life. It can make all the difference . It certainly did for us … Anyway, keep up the good work!”

“We want to thank you both for looking after them so well and have no expectations of a school trip we are just grateful xxxxx back to school and the forest school is a huge bonus so we really appreciate everything you all do. “

Mindfulness is our focus of the month of May. After over a year of restrictions, we may need to be mindful of the accumulated effect on ourselves as individuals of living with long term social curtailment, even when we live in privileged circumstances. Psychologists have identified the human need to experience five positives to overcome one negative. As adults, we can help our children develop resilience through naming the many positives we enjoy in a week, a day, a morning, a minute and thus model how to deal with disappointment.

Charlie Makesey