St. Francis Xavier JNS is actively working on our objective to be ‘a Partnership School’. Partnerships Schools Ireland (PSI) seeks to encourage children, school staff, parents and members of the local community to form an effective partnership in school for the benefit of the children. This comes in the form of the Action Team for Partnership (ATP).
Our current ATP members include students from 1st and 2nd classes, Mayumi, Clayton, Antoin, Marcus, Callie, Danny, Aoife and Sophie. We also have parents, Jen Cherry and Ellie Stack as well as teachers, Ms. Collins, Ms. Barrett, Ms. Corbett and Ms. Dervan. The community member is Ciara from Blanchardstown Library. Our original student members (Rory, Sophie, Andrew and Laura) have now passed over to the senior school.
We started the ATP in 2018. ATP has 4 goals that we work on – welcoming, literacy, numeracy and behavioural. We work as a team to choose initiatives that we believe will benefit the school and children each year. For our first year, we focused on a literacy and a welcoming goal.
Our literacy goal was “Reading Goggles”. The aim was to increase the children’s awareness of language in the environment and therefore develop their literacy skills outside the classroom. We encouraged the children to create a home-made pair of reading goggles out of materials we provided to them and recyclable material found at home. The children made their goggles and were encouraged to use them to find and read words in the environment. They all had an A3 reading googles sheet which they filled with words they found in the environment. They were returned to school after the 4 week reading goggles challenge.
Our second goal for that year was a welcoming goal. Ms. McCann’s class created a school song and performed it in May for the incoming Junior Infants. It was a lovely song and was a great success to welcome the new members of the school.
During our second year of ATP (2019/2020) we focused on a maths goal. We wanted to give the children the opportunity to improve their maths numeration and problem-solving skills through games. We created ‘Game Bags’ which contained 2 laminated board games, a pack of cards, dice and counters.
Children in 1st and 2nd class received game bags instead of homework for 2 weeks in February and March. They were encouraged to play maths games with their families, we also provided a blank A3 board game template for the children to create their own games. This was a huge success.
This year, 2019-2020 we are working on a welcoming goal. After our year with Covid the ATP team wanted to focus on positivity and gratitude. We provided art materials to every child in the school and set the art project to create a picture of something we are thankful this year. The children created gorgeous works of art listing all the things they are grateful for. They returned them to school where the ATP team, Mrs. Kennedy and the SNA’s laminated and cut the art work. They will be used to create an art collage in front of the school, on the school gates, path and hanging from the trees. The art project will be on display from the 14th to the 30th of June 2021.
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