12 tips on getting through the Junior Cert

Exam year for all third years is here. It’s a stressful time for everyone but with 12 tips from a student that has just received their junior cert results, you’re guaranteed to find the year a little bit easier.

Tip 1) Know your learning style ~ it’s important to know how you study and what works best for you, this way you have the best opportunity to do well in your exams.

Tip 2 ) Make a study plan at the start of the year ~ This will make your day look a lot more organised and it will give you an idea of how your studying is going and what you need to revise when coming up to your exams .

Tip 3) USE YOUR EXAM PAPERS! ~ This is the most efficient way to study for the upcoming exams. In most cases, past questions are repeated most of the years in the likes of science and English so most likely you’ll find a repeated or similar question somewhere in your papers.

Tip 4) Limit distractions ~ Keep socialising and spending time with friends as it’s important to have a balance between studying and your social life, but, a few months prior to June limit the amount of time you are going out and designate certain days/time for study. When you’re studying make sure all electronic devices are shut off or on silent as these can distract you easily.

Tip 5) Keep on top of your homework ~ Keeping on top of your homework and doing it to a high standard for every class is a guarantee that you’re going to find studying and revising so much easier.

Tip 6) Use Studyclix ! ~ Making an account on studyclix is free and you’ve access to all past exam papers and sample questions. If you pay for the premium version of studyclix you then get full access to the app and can use the likes of past mock papers. There is also a comment tool that allows you and other students that are preparing for their exams to interact with each other, ask questions and exchange notes.

Tip 7) Use your local library ~ Personally, I found going to my local library very helpful for study as it is a very calm setting surrounded by other students. Going with friends if you rather not study alone is another option.

Tip 8) When sitting your exams, leave the school on your breaks ~ After each exam is completed, you are given usually around 1hr 30mins – 2hrs break time. Do not stay in the school and do not cram in that break time! It’s a break for a reason so give yourself an opportunity to go home and relax for a while or go on a walk to the shop with your friends. Revising is fine but don’t overdo it. You’ll remember more if you revise smaller sections properly instead of half revising the whole course.

Tip 9) Bring a spare calculator to your maths/business exams ~ From personal experience, bring a spare calculator just in case. Saves you the embarrassment of banging it off the table :/

Tip 10) Leave NOTHING blank ~ Even if you have no clue what the answer is, put something down. You’ve a better chance of getting attempt marks for any answer compared to no answer at all. Remember, the examiners are trying to award you marks, not dock them.

Tip 11) Cramming works, but not at night ~ If you’re going to cram, start at least a week or two before the actual exams. Cramming works to some extent but not studying the whole junior cycle course the night before your exam. You should have at least 7-8 hrs sleep to be able to perform well in your exams. I made the mistake of pulling an all-nighter the night before my last exam and it reflected in my results I got in September.

Tip 12) Don’t Stress!! ~ This is the most important one. At the end of the day their only exams and they’re not going to determine the rest of your life. It’s good to do well in them but of you don’t just use it as a motivation to do better in your exams in the future.

Best of luck to all third years sitting their exams this year!

By Leah (Rang Tara)

Poetry Inspires Music

Rhythm is what makes music as well as poetry. In fact Junior Cycle music students’ study a type of song called ‘Art Songs’ which are   poems set to music.

In honour of ‘Poetry Week’ last week in CDL. The 1st year music students got a chance to compose some music inspired by a poem of their choice or a poem that they have composed themselves.

Check out some of their compositions:

Chloe’s Composition

Beibhinn’s Composition

James’ Composition

Nell’s Composition

We hope you enjoyed our compositions and check back soon for what we get up to next in the Music Room.






Gearing up for Safer Internet Day 2018

Safer Internet Day (SID) is an EU wide initiative to promote a safer internet for all users, especially students and young people. This years theme for Safer Internet Day 2018 is “Create, connect and share respect: A better internet starts with you”. Safer Internet Day 2018 will be celebrated on Tuesday, February 6th. Here at CDL in Ashbourne we have a number of activities planned to help get all of our students involved.

In preparation for this we had a friendly visit from our local Community Gardaí in Ashbourne. They delivered a talk to all our 1st year students on Internet Safety; how to keep their information safe online, how to mind their personal safety while engaging in the online world and the consequences of engaging in negative behaviour online.

Please find a list of useful information:

Learning to Code and Problem Solve

This year Coding was introduced as an Other Learning Experience (OLE) in CDL for 1st and 2nd Year students. It’s important for our students to learn more than just a basic understanding of coding, we want them to work on analyzing problems, problem solving strategies and to experiment with their individual creativity.

To help us get started on this journey we are using some of the resources available on www.code.org. If you would like to learn more about what you son/daughter is learning in coding, please check out the website above.

Díospóireachtaí an Idirbhliain Samhain 2017

Bhí díospóireachtaí spreagúla ar súil sna ranganna Gaeilge an téarma seo idir foireann éagsúla. Bhí an rún ‘Ba chóir go mbeadh ábhar éigeantach í an Ghaeilge i ngach scoil in Éirinn’ pléite ag ghrúpa amháin agus bhí dhá fhoireann eile ag troid leis an rún ‘An féidir linn Gaeilge a athbheochan arís?’

Díospóireachtaí den scoth ab ea iad agus bhí na daltaí ag obair go dian dícheallach chun a bheith ina n-eolaithe sna hábhair difriúla. Comhghairdeas le gach dalta ar a n-iarracht féin!

Science Week 2017

Coláiste De Lacy celebrated Science week with a number of events and competitions held throughout the week. These included the marshmallow tower building challenge as well as digestion and methane fire bubble demonstrations. There were daily science riddles as well as tasking starters that encouraged students and staff to use their imagining and noticing habits. Two TY students performed a humorous monologue during Tional where both staff and students learned to never trust an atom as they make up everything along with many more interesting facts.
The highlight of the week was the Clann Egg drop challenge where students had to create a structure that would protect an egg that was dropped from the first floor onto the halla floor. The competition was fierce and a number of clanns were inseparable. As a result the science department have decided to run another egg drop challenge with stricter criteria after Christmas.
The Science Department would like to thank both staff and students for their participation and effort which made Science Week an extremely enjoyable event.

Irish Schools Fitness Challenge

Colaiste De Lacy took part in the Irish Schools Fitness Challenge again this year. Pupils completed their initial test in early October and have been working on improving their fitness levels since. All classes have been taking part in timed lap challenges as well different strength classes. Students were assigned activity homework and many have been working hard to improve their fitness by attending the extracurricular sports clubs inside school as well as trying to be as active as possible outside of school. The second phase of results have been collected and the PE Department are proud to announce that all the effort has paid off and that the majority of students have improved their result.

New sport arrives in CDL

This year a camogie team was formed in Coláiste De Lacy and our students took part in the Meath/Kildare Novice Schools Senior league. Participating in a league with older and more experienced players, Coláiste De Lacy stepped up and produced some super displays against Coláiste Chiarain Leixlip, St. Peter’s College Dunboyne and Athboy CS. A rock tight defense, strong running in the midfield and a versatile forward line that defended as well as scored ensure that we competed well with more established schools.  An important mention needs to be given to the large number of players have only started playing since September. These girls have rose to the tough challenge set by competing with players that have represented their counties at minor level. Training continues every week and numbers are growing. We look forward to playing in the Meath/Kildare Junior League that will begin in February.  

Experiencing Spanish culture around the world.

We were transported to Spain, Mexico, South America and the Caribbean in TY Spanish. We have been learning about the culture of Spanish speaking countries and as part of this we explored the music from there. After listening to salsa, flamenco and reggaeton, students created a lip sync video of a song in Spanish. With Maracas played and the Macarena danced the groups put on a very entertaining show. Other activities this year have included playing traditional spanish sports such as ‘pelota’, discussing artists such as Picasso, Dalí and Kahlo and also writing stories or fairy tales in their own words. Through this, they are discovering lots of new information on the life and culture of the Spanish speaking world.

Lights, Camera, Action in Geography.

It isn’t often that you would find a farmer, a fisherman and members of Bord na Mona in your classroom but that is what happened with 3rd year Geography students recently. Well, not exactly but close enough! Students created videos taking on these personas to discuss and revise primary economic activities. Dressed in costume, they acted out people working with raw materials such as water, oil, peat, fish and farm animals. The creativity in these videos was excellent but most importantly the collaboration and distilling of information was very impressive and will no doubt help with their revision.