Thursday, 28 May 2015

Field Trip to Ross Castle

Yesterday the whole school went on a field trip to see a real castle! We had been learning all about castles for the last few weeks so it was a great treat to get a tour of a real one!

We headed for Ross Castle in Killarney. We started with a walk around the outside of the castle to look at the windows, parapets, turrets, arrow slit windows and even the block work.

The Junior Room were met by Marie and the Senior Room were met by Tom to guide us through the castle.

We were led into the soldiers' quarters. It was smaller than our classroom and they think that 15 - 20 soldiers used to eat, sleep and live there. There was also two cavities in each wall to store their weapons and belongings. There was a large open fire to cook on.

The door leading out to the spiral staircase looked like two doors stuck together. One door had vertical planks and the other door had horizontal planks. This was called a cross plank door. There were stuck together with iron studs. Long ago, these would have been spikes to defend the room. the spikes would have stopped attackers using battering rams and other weapons to get through the door. They wouldn't have been able to barge the door open with their shoulders without getting impaled on a spike. The cross planked door also meant that if one side splits along the grain, the other side would have a different grain and so the same would not happen.

When we got to the staircase we had to be very careful going up. It was a spiral staircase with trip steps or stumble steps. These were steps of different widths and heights. It meant that attacking soldiers would not be able to run quickly up the staircase. They had to be very careful. The spiral also went around in a clockwise direction. All soldiers at that time were taught to use their weapons with their right hand. This meant that the attackers weapon was on the narrow side of the stairs and did not allow them to get a good swing at the defenders. The defenders had their weapons on the wider side of the staircase allowing them to get a good swing at the attacker from above.

On the first floor there was another soldiers' room. This could sleep up to 20 soldiers. We saw arrow slit windows called loop windows. This were built so that 3 archers could should shoot in 3 directions at the attackers without being hit themselves. The opening had an arch with holes for 3 beams. These were putt log holes which were used as scaffolding while the castle was being built. There was a hole in the wall by the cross plank door called a musket hole. This was for shooting at attackers that were at the door.

There was a small dining room on this floor for the Lord and his family. There was a tapestry on the wall. This showed the wealth of the Lord and also keep the heat in.

On the second floor was the Lord's bedroom. This would have slept the Lord and Lady in a bed. There would have been curtains around the bed to keep the heat in, The children and servants would have slept on the floor of this room. There was weaving in the roof of this room. The roof was weaved using willow  like a basket to begin with. Then some stone and mortar was put on top and left to dry. Then they plastered over this to create an arched ceiling. The willow weaving was left there for decorative purposes. The bed was really short. This was because in medieval times people had terrible respiratory problems. This was caused by the limestone dust used to coat the walls. They mixed limestone dust, pigs blood, crushed shells and animal fur. The blood kept the mixture together and the animal fur stopped it from cracking.

There was a very old wooden trunk at the end of the bed. Most of the furniture had been sourced from the continent of Europe to decorate the castle to give us a good idea of how it used to look. This trunk was made in Ireland of Irish Oak back in the 1400's. Tom told us that Columbus discovered America 1492 and that the trunk was older than this! He said that Americans were always fascinated with this information.

We headed back towards the staircase and passed a small room called the Justice Room. This was were the Lord settled disputes between clan members, It was a small room so that he could keep everything under control easily.

The next room was our favourite room in the castle - the toilet! (Or the Garderobe) The word garderobe comes from French and means to guard your clothes. There was a narrow passageway which lead to the right. it was freezing. There was a 3 foot long ledge with a chute down to a hole. This was were medieval people did their business. :) The ledge was wide enough for 2 or even 3 people to use at the same time! Ewww! The waste dropped down to a cesspit below and a gong farmer had the worst job of all! His job was to clean out the cesspit. He left some waste to rot so that ammonia would travel back up the chute and clean the clothes. It killed fleas and lice that might have lived in the clothes. Clothes were hung in the narrow hallway to the garderobe.

The  next room was the servants quarters. This would sleep up to 20 servants and their families. There was a mezzanine level where the children would sleep. There was also a big hole in the ground. This was called a Murder Hole. In times of attack hot liquids or tar were poured through the hole onto the attackers.

On the top floor, we entered the Great Hall. There was a long table at the top of the room. There was one big chair were the Lord would sit. is guests and family would sit on stools around the table or other tables in the room. Food was served on pewter plates. These were polished to make them look shiny and expensive. Pewter is made of lead so they didn't know this but they were poisoning themselves by eating from these plates.

There was a room off the Great Hall for preparing food. This was cooked over an open fire in the hall. Fat from the meat would drip onto the rushes on the floor. These were gathered and used as candles.

There was also a gallery above the hall for musicians, singers, storytellers, poets and entertainment. The stairs up was really narrow and small. We sang a song.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015


Today the Junior pupils were learning all about castles because we are going on a field trip to Ross Castle tomorrow. We were learning about the different parts of a castle.

 In art and craft we made castles from cereal boxes. We all chose a flag from a different country and we put it on our castle. We are looking forward to visiting a real castle now. 

Tuesday, 26 May 2015


Today the pupils in the Junior made chocolate chip scones and plain scones with Marianne.

When they were cooked they were delicious. We all enjoyed them. 

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Something Fishy........

Today Andrew from The Irish Fisheries Board visited our school. He gave a presentation to the pupils in the senior room about life in a river. He then went to a local river and he collected various types of fish, insects and pond life. 

He showed us a tiny brown trout and he spoke about it. 

He then showed us a much larger eel. 

We even got to touch the eel. To us he felt very slippery and slimy. 

We also examined other types of life from the river. 

When we were finished exploring and examining the pond life Andrew returned all of the species to the river where he had found them. Our thanks to Andrew for a very informative presentation. 

Monday, 18 May 2015

First Holy Communion

Pupils from Shrone NS and Hollymount NS were celebrating on Saturday after receiving their First Holy Communion. 

Congratulations to Aidan, Aoife, Daniel, Sarah and Tierna. They all looked beautiful.

Thank you to the students of both Shrone and Hollymount for singing and playing music for the mass. Thank you to Sheilann Moynihan and Henry Cronin for helping us with the choir.

Thank you to Fr. Pat who organised a marquee at the church afterwards and we all enjoyed a cup of tea and some delicious cakes made by Marianne.

Thank you to Bridie Pearse for having the church ready for us on Saturday and for the flowers from Breda.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Rathmore Credit Union 2-teacher School Competition, Barraduff Community Field, 15.05.2015

On Friday, the Senior Room traveled to the Barraduff Community Field for the Rathmore Credit Union 2-teacher school football competition.

We were in a group with Meentogues NS and Tiernaboul NS. Our first match was against Tiernaboul - we beat them after a tough match. Our 2nd game of the day was even tougher against Meentogues, despite playing very well and scoring 3 goals against them, they beat us!

Luckily we came 2nd in our group so we are through to the Semi-final, to be played next Thursday!

Some shots of us in action can be seen by clicking here.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

We are on Twitter!

We regularly post news and events on put Twitter page! Follow us on @ShroneNS !

What happens to sugar when it melts????

Today the senior room made honeycomb here's how we made it.

Ingredients :
200g of sugar 
4 tablespoons of golden syrup 
1 spoon of baking soda 
Tray with baking paper

Method :
Melt the sugar when the sugar has melted and add in the golden syrup.
Let it boil for ten minutes or until it bubbles. 
Then add the baking soda. 
Wisk it for a couple of seconds and then pour it on the tray really fast. 
Ask an adult for help with this.
Then let it set for about an hour.

                       Enjoy (P.S mind your teeth!!!!!) 😃

The Lever and the Pivot!

Today we learned about the lever and pivot. We learnt that a pivot moves the object and the lever tells the pivot what to do. We had to colour and cut out the dogs.

The aim was that the dog would wag his tail and move his tongue. In this case the lever is the tail and the tongue, and the pivot is the pin holding it together. When our dogs were all complete, whenever we moved the dog's tail the tongue moved with it!

By Sophie and Liam! 😃

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Engineers at work

This week we had a bridge making competition. It was for the Discovery Primary Science. Our bridges had to hold 500 grammes. The bridges were designed with wood, paper, lego, pencils, building blocks, hot wires, straws, plastic cups and cable ties. These are the pictures of our bridges.
This is the strongest bridge. It is made of wood and nails. It is painted. It was built by Kieran.
This bridge has electricity. It was built by James.
This bridge is made using Lego. It was built by Liam.

This is a very creative bridge. it is made using a lot of materials - plastic, wood, pencils, elastic and cable ties! It was built by Niamh.
This bridge is made of paper. It was built by Michael.
This bridge was made using cardboard and plastic cups. It was built by Sophie.

Trip to the bridge

For the Discovery Primary Science program, We decided to go to find out more about our local bridge. 

The bridge is on the way as you go to 'The City'. We were split into four groups and we had to find out information about the bridge. 

We found out that the bridge is an arch bridge, There is a river under the bridge, the length is 18m, the width was 5m, the height was 5m and the height of the wall was 1m. 

We used a trundle wheel to measure the length and width of the bridge. We used a weight and some string to measure the height. We dropped the weight down into the river. We marked the string on the point at the top of the wall. Then we measured the distance from the weight to the mark. 

We found the bridge was made of concrete and stone. It is a very old bridge. We learnt a lot more about our local bridge! 

By Liam and Sophie 😄

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

3D shape

Yesterday Michelle , James and Orla made a triangular based pyramid.

We used:


This is how we made it:

We got a marshmallow and stuck a straw through it and we did the same with the other 3 straws. 
Then to stick it all together we cut the straws into quarters and stuck them through the marshmallows at the bottom. And for the finishing touch we put a marshmallow on the top!!! As easy as that 

                                       Enjoy your shape😃😃

Friday, 1 May 2015

Math's Trail, Junior Room

As part of the Discovery Primary Science and Maths award the pupils in the Junior room did a maths trail today.

 We counted items and we found both 2D shapes and 3D shapes within the  school grounds. 

We estimated distances and then we calculated the correct answers. 

We enjoyed our Maths lesson today.