The first Talk Tuesday of December featured our Head Girl, Eilis. Here she talks about the challenges associated with this role this year!
As part of our Talk Tuesday series, on the 8th of December our Deputy Head Girl, Maura, spoke to us about her role as Deputy Head Girl in Loreto.
Year 14 pupil, Meabh talks about the very important work done by the JPIC Team in Loreto. You will get an opportunity to meet the whole team in Issue 2 of the Loreto Times.
‘Talk Tuesday’ on 3rd of November featured Year 13 pupil, Sinead, who told us about her love of singing. Sinead is a valued member of our school choir and often performs solo at school events and liturgies.
On Tuesday 10th November our ‘Talk Tuesday’ slot featured a Year 8 pupil called Lily Rose. She talked about her experience of starting secondary level education in Loreto in the middle of a global pandemic.
On Tuesday 6th October we launched our ‘Talk Tuesday’ series. First up was Yr 14 pupil and Vice-Sports Captain, Sorcha, to talk about her running career.
Friday the 13th can often be considered to be an unlucky day. As a Year 8 student at Loreto, Friday 13th March 2020 was to be the last time I sat in a classroom situation, laughed and walked with my friends down the school corridors, ate my lunch in the canteen and travelled home on Ulster bus. As my school principal rightly said ‘these really are unprecedented times’.
These last three months have been surreal. I never could have imagined that a pandemic could have threatened our very existence. I have learned to become so resilient and tried not to worry about what lay ahead. I felt many lows in the first few weeks at not being able to see my friends, my grandparents. My whole routine of getting up on weekdays at 7.30am changed quickly. Also, I soon realized I had to look at the positives of my life. I love to bake so I focused on that skill which my family appreciated. I never before had time to go for long walks without it being on a schedule. I enjoyed the calmness of this. I miss my football training and camogie. Especially the whole team element.
My family are one of the units I really started to appreciate more. My mum is a teacher so she kept the whole day structured around school routine. I liked this as it meant that everything was organized in some way. Also, it meant that the weekend was different from the rest of the week. My dad had to continue working through most of the pandemic as he runs his own business and they were identified as being key workers. If there was a power cut or line damaged, he was on call. I appreciated my sisters so much during this time. The fun and excitement were never short in our home. I missed the visits from my extended family and especially my Grandad.
My community proved instrumental through the pandemic. The NHS saved lives throughout the whole of the north. The leadership from politicians ensured the smooth running of services during this time. Our GAA club organised food drops to help the local SVP society to feed the aged and vulnerable. It was nice to see people work together to help others.
My faith was tested at the start of this as suddenly a virus in China reached our small island. I thought, how could God allow this to happen? Yet I continued to attend Mass every Sunday morning virtually at 11am and I found comfort in listening to the words of the priest. My prayers helped me stay happy and not to fear the days ahead.
My experience of lockdown has been rather good so far. I have kept myself busy and lockdown has given me the chance to de-stress from my hectic, busy life. I have the chance to do things I enjoy that I never had time for before; for example, yesterday I baked a lemon drizzle cake, did some gardening, went for a cycle and fixed the fence in one of our fields, all of which I would never have dreamed of having the time to do.
I keep myself busy every day by home schooling. Home schooling is quite enjoyable in my opinion, it means I can continue learning and preparing for my GCSE’s next year. I like how I can create my own schedule and work at a time that suits me. Another bonus to home schooling is that I will never forget a book (which happens at school way too often!)
The negatives of home schooling for me is when all the teachers send me work at the same time on a Monday morning and you have to try find a balance of how to evenly spread out the work over the coming week. The work can be baffling at times too, as there is no teacher present to explain it so it’s sort of like teaching yourself. However, overall I am enjoying this new experience of home schooling despite whatever difficulties that come with it.
I miss being at school every day (but I definitely do not miss getting up every morning at 7am). I miss seeing all my friends and I miss my class and how we would be spending our last 2 months together as 10A4 before being split up in September.
I really miss my family as well; I have a total of 7 vulnerable people in my family, so I don’t get to see most of them at all. Every day I cycle to my granny’s house and wave to her from outside her window, then I would start to maybe cut her grass or trim a hedge. It really makes her day whenever my brother or I call with her. My brother is 18 in 2 weeks, so my family were thinking of throwing him a party with a barbeque and cake (but with only my family attending of course) so at least that’s something to look forward too!
I am very lucky to live right next to the Gortin Glens, so even though the park is closed, there is lots of neighbouring forests for me to explore. I am also very grateful for ‘Zoom,’- the app lets my zoom some of my friends that don’t have FaceTime and it is fun to have a chat with them. It brings a bit of normality to my lockdown life.
Altogether, I am enjoying my lockdown experience, but I can’t wait until the day I get to go through the Loreto gates!
Being in lockdown can have its ups and downs, and I’ve had my fair share of them. I mostly spend my days lounging around the house, completely bored out of my mind; or during other days – I am stressed to the max with the homework. So, I’m going to be sharing my story in lockdown.
The good and the bad of being home-schooled: I was thrilled when I learned that we had to stay home, because I thought that meant that we wouldn’t get a lot of work. (Boy, was I wrong). I liked being taught at home because of the fact that we could sleep most of the day away and then just leave the work until later. The fact that we wouldn’t have to put on the uniform and carry that heavy bag around was a plus too. I was also quite relieved that we didn’t have to do any video calls for class, like some schools did.
Online school can be a dread sometimes. Lifting up your phone or looking at your computer and seeing all those notifications from Teams can really dampen your mood. And the fact that you could fall behind on all of your work if you just miss one. It really makes me panic more than I actually should.
On a way to pass the time, I spend most of the time in the kitchen trying to cook. I watch TV or listen to music (and sometimes even learn choreographies to those songs). But I spend the majority of my time with my family, catching up on family time that I could never get when there was no lockdown. So I guess, I have lockdown to thank for getting even closer to my family.
I miss a lot of people because of lockdown. Mostly my friends though. I never realised how dull things can be if I didn’t see my friends, in person, quite often. Of course, we have social media to help – but it’s just not the same as it usually is. I miss being able to spend time with them outside of school or even just messing around during school. Speaking of school, I actually do miss school; which is a sentence that I thought I would never say, but it is very true. I miss learning in the classrooms and having fun with the teachers too. It feels weird without school, which just makes me miss it more.
I stay hopeful every day, that lockdown and corona can finally be over and I can see my friends and be in school. A lot of people are suffering because of this, whether they are front-line workers and their families, people who have Covid-19, or just people feeling the same way I do. And I pray that everyone is staying safe, and also look forward to the day we can be normal again.
My experience of lockdown has been quite relaxing, but I can’t wait to be able to see my family and friends and to go to school.
Home schooling has been okay for me. It’s nice to do your work at home and in comfy clothes but on the other hand it’s been difficult to stay focused and motivated to do my work.
I have been exercising a lot in our workout space in our garage to pass the time. I’ve also been outside in the garden playing football with my brothers and netball with my Mum. I’ve learned to cook new dishes and bake new things and I didn’t even set off the fire alarm doing so. My family and I have been having game nights every other night and mini football matches in the garden.
I miss my wider family a lot and I miss football and all the girls at football. I miss my all my friends and can’t wait to see them.
I have been staying hopeful by spending time with my brothers and Mum, and Face Timing my relatives and all the girls at football and some school friends. I’m never in the house usually with club football and Tyrone football and then netball and helping out my granny, so I’m enjoying spending time with my family during lockdown.
In conclusion, my experience in lockdown has been good and I can’t wait to see the rest of my family and friends.