Gaisce – The President’s Award

Primrose class are participating in Gaisce – the President’s Award.

Gaisce or ‘great achievement’ is a self-development programme for young people between the ages of 15-25 and has been in existence since 1985. It has been proven to enhance confidence and wellbeing through participation in personal, physical and community challenges. Gaisce acts as a direct challenge from the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, to all young people to dream big and realise their potential. Our amazing cohort of learners fit this brief perfectly, and so we were eager to begin the program.

The Bronze Award

Our students are working to achieve the bronze medal of the Gaisce award. It involves participating in four challenges: community involvement, personal skill, physical recreation and an adventure journey.

Community Involvement – Improving the School Garden (13 weeks)

Community Involvement is all about making a difference to other people’s lives. Our class came together and decided that we would do some work in the garden and outdoor spaces of the school to improve the area for all learners in our school to enjoy.

We have begun by working in the poly tunnel. The class have been working hard to make the tunnel an inviting place for everybody in the school community. We have also been learning about sowing seeds and water plants in the process.

Personal Skill – Cooking or Lámh Sign Language (13 weeks)

Personal Skill gives you the change to develop a new skill or interests. Working on a particular skill helps to boost your self-esteem, develop other practical and social skills, and learn how to set and rise to a challenge.

When our students were presented with the opportunity to choose a personal skill, there were lots of ideas. So, we have some students working on developing their Lámh sign language and others working on improving their cooking skills.

Lámh is a manual sign language system used by some children in our class to communicate. Some chose the challenge to enhance their knowledge of different signs and others chose it to communicate with their peers. We are having so much fun learning new signs and performing our favourite songs using the signs which we have learned.

Love to Cook

We all love to cook and especially eat our tasty treats. The children in Primrose class are having great fun choosing recipes and working together to make amazing meals. We love using visual recipes so that the students can follow the recipe independently.

Physical Recreation – Walking (26 weeks)

Physical Recreation is about becoming physically stronger and improving fitness. Getting moving is a sure way to make you feel healthier, think better, and live longer. We have decided to include a daily walk on our timetable and to see how many kilometres we can travel during the school year.

Adventure Journey

Later in the year, the group will go on an adventure journey together. We look forward to planning the activities and having fun!

Gaisce is focused on, and driven by, the following core values:

  • Empowerment: Making a difference, effecting change and enabling young people to shape their own path to self-discovery.
  • Inclusion & Equality: Every person has the opportunity to grow their potential through equality of access, participation and outcomes.
  • Respect: Valuing people equally, recognising diversity, and ensuring everyone is treated with dignity.
  • Excellence: Making an impact through pursuing the highest standards, operating with integrity and in a transparent manner.