PDF version of letter: 2017_0531_BenNevisletter
Pupils from S4-S6 came along to our Easter School for some extra study and assistance in a relaxed atmosphere before the SQA exams begin in May.
Pupils were also treated to lunch on both days – can’t study on an empty stomach.
Thanks to Ethan for braving the wrath of S5/6 to take photos.
During sixth year, we have been given the opportunity to take part in various clubs and projects. The “Dementia Friends” project allowed us to get involved with the Motherwell FC Community Trust and was set up to help break the barrier between the older and younger generations in our local community. My peers and I completed a workshop with a dementia expert to help build our knowledge on the condition and train us for the sessions ahead.
We split into groups and decided on appropriate times for us to meet with our ‘Dementia Friend’ and had our first session with them in Ravens Court. The idea behind this project is mainly to brighten their day by chatting and interacting with them alongside creating a memory book for them to cherish. We completed various activities to help jog their memories about their lives when they were our age and we had a lot of fun hearing their stories.
I believe I speak on behalf of the other pupils who take part when I say that it is really beneficial experience. Not only are we making our older friends feel part of something special, we ourselves also feel good about giving back to our local community. I would thoroughly recommend taking part in this worthwhile and life affirming opportunity to anyone.
Report by Ms Moir
The Higher Geography class visited Glasgow on Monday 20th March to conduct fieldwork for their assignment. The class visited the suburbs, the inner city area and the city centre to carry out their work. Pupils completed traffic surveys, recorded different land uses in the areas and conducted questionnaires to the public. Pupils are now working hard in class to process these reuslts and analyse them for their assignment. Every pupil did a fantastic job of representing the school and thoroughly enjoyed their day out!
From Mrs Donnachie, DHT S5/6
S4/5 Parents’ Information evening,
Tuesday 21st February 2017,
7pm, School Theatre
This evening will give you information about how to help your child/children over the weeks ahead as they prepare to move from S4 to S5 and S5 to S6 and provide you with important dates in relation to the SQA. As well as this the event will give you the opportunity to hear about the subject choices that will be available to your son/daughter from next session as well as the opportunity to ask questions.
In addition, Mrs Zambonini will give a presentation on Developing The Young Workforce which is a government strategy to help ensure that all young people leave school with a career path in place.
Ruth Robertson, our Careers Adviser, will also give information about Skills Development Scotland’s role in this strategy. Ruth is also available in school every Monday, Tuesday and Friday for one to one appointments; her role along with the pupil support team is key to ensuring that your son/daughter makes the correct subject choices as they progress in their school career.
I hope you can make this event and I look forward to welcoming you on the evening.
Report from Mr Smith
The S5/6 Travel and Tourism class had a guest speaker this week. Jamie Loudon is the airport manager for British Airways at Edinburgh Airport.
Jamie spoke passionately about his job and his career so far. The pupils enjoyed his stories from his time as an air steward and had the opportunity to ask questions about the travel industry. The class woud like to thank Jamie for taking the time to talk to them and for all his advice he gave them for the future.
This year Our Lady’s High School is again running a comprehensive Easter School programme for S4-6 pupils. Easter school will take place on Monday 3rd April and Tuesday 4th April 2017.
Pupils will be asked to opt for up to a maximum of 6 sessions over the 2 days i.e. a maximum of 3 per day. They can choose different subjects for each of the allocated sessions or choose to do more than one session for particular subjects. The format of each day will be as follows:-
Session 1 9.00-10.30
Session 2 10.45-12.15
Session 3 12.45-2.15
Please note there will be no transport available during Easter School, however lunch will be provided on both days.
This is a fantastic opportunity for your child to revise with their teachers in preparation for the SQA exams which begin on the 2nd May 2016.
If you wish your child to be involved, please print, complete and sign the accompanying form (copies sent with letter or see links below) and return it to me by Friday 24th February.
Mrs M Donnachie,
The Annual Education Mass was held on Tuesday 31st January in Motherwell Cathedral, officiated by Bishop Toal. Twelve sixth year pupils and a number of staff went along to the beautiful and thought provoking service. Afterwards, they took the opportunity to relax at the reception which followed in St. Bride’s Hall.
Angela Sewell, Maia Winton and Natalie Marshall have been successful in entering the Junk Kouture competition with their garment “The Flying Scots Girl”. All the garments are made from recycled materials and the entry from OLHS was made from handbags, charity shop clothing, bubble wrap and can ring pulls. There were over 350 entries this year with the top 80 garments making into the Grand Final which will take place on February 9th in the SECC Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow. Many congratulations to Angela Sewell whose costume has been chosen to be part of the Grand Final.
Supporters can buy tickets to the fashion show and vote for their favourite garment on the Junk Kouture Facebook page. You can now vote once a day for every design. This vote will close at midnight on Friday and it is worth 10% of the overall marks, so please vote for Angela!
Maia will model Angela’s design and perform her own choreography on the catwalk on February 9th. Thanks to Ms Steinert for her usual enthusiasm for all things artistic!
Fifth and Sixth Year prelims finished on Monday 30th January. Thanks to Mr Jimmy Keenan and his team of invigilators for their hard work and support of our young people during this stressful time – the pupils really appreciated the calm atmosphere the invigilators created.
Now the hard work really starts for all of our SQA candidates. Many of the subjects being studied contain a coursework element: performance, portfolio, investigation, extended essay or dissertation. Many marks can be gained by producing good course work and performing well in practical work, so it is really important that pupils, encouraged and supported by their teachers and parents, put in as much effort as possible between now and the end of March, when most of this coursework has to be submitted.
We look forward to welcoming Mr Keenan and his team in early May for the start of the SQA diet.
On Tuesday 6th December, Mrs King and two sixth year MVP representatives attended the annual MVP Summit in the Tramway Theatre, Glasgow. It was an all-day conference during which many speakers from all different walks of like spoke about personal experiences to the audience of MVP mentors from across Scotland. For example, John Loughton spoke about his journey from the most deprived area of Edinburgh to stardom and politics; Jess Thom from ‘Tourette’s Hero’ spoke about her daily life and how she copes with people who don’t laugh at her comments – when really that’s what makes her most uncomfortable about her condition.
The main aim of the summit was to introduce targets which individual schools could act upon and to suggest ways in which MVP can be promoted in schools across Scotland. Representatives from the MVP Scotland group also attended alongside members of the police and an MP who both spoke openly about how MVP can be taken from schools out into the community, all through the work of mentors. All in all it was an excellent, informative and very enjoyable day celebrating the work of mentors and also the contribution of MVP to Scottish society.
A number of S6 pupils and two members of staff have been learning BSL now for three weeks, under the eagle eyes of Ian, Rachel and Helen from the Lanarkshire Deaf Club. We are becoming much more confident with our finger spelling, colours, animals, greetings, family groups and common signs. We can’t wait to start working in pairs on our conversational skills, beginning next week.
The ten week course, organised by Mrs Donnachie and Mrs Zambonini, is a chance for everyone to become more deaf aware, and to add to our communication skills.
Our S6 volunteers with the Motherwell FC Community Trust had their introductory meeting with a representative of Alzheimer’s Scotland. The young people were given an insight into the progress of the condition, how patients and families feel about it, as well as strategies to improve quality of life. They were very moved by some of the stories they heard, but this has made them even more determined to make a difference to the lives of their Buddies and families.
The Support for Learning base was filled on Thursday with enthusiastic BSL learners, both staff and pupils. We were introduced to our tutors Ian Galloway and Rachael Griffiths from Lanarkshire Deaf Club, and interpreter Helen Pennan, who will work with us over the next ten weeks. Our first task was to learn the finger spelling alphabet, then introduce ourselves and finger spell our names. Individuals were put on the spot when we had to perform our tasks in front of the whole class- quite nerve-wracking!
We were then given a homework pack- the first of many, we were informed- to learn for next session. Everyone contributed enthusiastically and we can’t wait for our next BSL session.
Many thanks to our new teachers!
Graham Simpson, MSP, visited our Higher Politics class this week. Graham led discussion on his own journey into politics, conservatism in action in the UK and counter arguments in response to criticisms of conservatism. We are very grateful for the time he spent with us and the knowledge gained. This experience will undoubtedly help our young people as they progress through their studies. Our class now have the opportunity to engage in an exciting follow up task and we are very grateful for this opportunity. #pollitolhs
I think it’s safe to say that Mr Simpson enjoyed himself too.
On Friday 7th October all S6 pupils took part in a Mock Interview, which followed on from the UCAS/Developing the Young Workforce day on 4th October. Pupils prepared application forms during PSHE and these were sent to interviewers prior to Friday, allowing them time to read the applications and formulate suitable questions.
The nine interviewers came from a variety of career backgrounds including IT, Publishing, Police, Accountancy, Electronics, Education and Science. The feedback from the interviewers was outstanding- in particular, they praised the preparation and confidence of our young people and all left our school with an extremely positive opinion of our S6 pupils: in the words of one interviewer the experience was “Life affirming.”
The pupils themselves found the experience very worthwhile and rewarding- a very practical example of how DYW is being successfully implemented in Our Lady’s High School.
Our thanks to all of our interviewers for their time and hard work.
Colin Fox, National Co-Spokesperson for the Scottish Socialist Party, visited our Higher Politics class this week. Colin led discussion on his own understanding of socialism as a political theory, socialism in action in modern Scotland and counter arguments in response to criticisms of socialism. We are very grateful for the time he spent with us and the knowledge gained. This experience will undoubtedly help our young people as they progress through their studies.