Last week the TY students and some of their teachers took off to Killary Adventure Centre on the annual bonding trip. The students got down and dirty, swimming in bog-holes, climbing walls, and generally communing with nature in a very hands-on way! The trip included an overnight stay in the Adventure Centre and, of course, very little sleep was had! Any energy that might have survived was used up the following day as the activities continued and the students arrived back in Sligo on Friday afternoon, ready for a sleep-filled weekend.

In Sligo Grammar School students TY students get involved in the community in a variety of ways. As well as volunteering to help with community projects, working with people with special needs and participating in flag days  the students run special fundraising events within the school. In the last two weeks TY students ran a “Jersey Day” in aid of the charity GOAL and teachers and students from all classes got involved, donating €2 each for the privilege of wearing the jersey of their favourite team.  In November the TY Annual Sponsored Swim took place.  Seventy students participated in the swim at Rosses Point beach, some in fancy-dress. The swim was a huge success with €1,200 collected for various local charities.  A special thanks to Paul (lifeguard) and all the teachers involved.   

Sustainable Living

On March 5th, 8 TY pupils from SGS travelled to Charlestown Co. Mayo to work with TY pupils from St Joseph’s, the local Community School, and help prepare the ground for a community garden. Our pupils were joined by an army of 26 local pupils, and together the students cleared the site and painted walls, gates – and themselves! The project was organised by Ms. Mary McIntyre with the assistance of our Sustainable Living teacher, Mr Pauric Cassidy. Mr. Cassidy showed pupils how to build raised beds, which was of particular interest to the pupils of St. Joseph’s, who are currently designing their own garden in the grounds of the school. McHales Sawmills in Sligo very kindly donated wood to the project and were delighted to hear that our pupils were involved in this worthwhile community project. A great day was had by all, and many thanks to the students from both schools for their hard work and to the teachers for making it all happen!

TY Mentor Programme

The Transition Year mentoring programme for first years started on the 25th of August with a preparation course – before school even started! Students Holly-Amber, Mark, Nigel, Lucy, Fiachra, Aife, Penny, Hubert, Eddie and Joshua showed the new students around and told them everything they needed and wanted to know about life around the school. Mentors and first years got to go on a history trip together in September. I asked the TY mentors what they thought of the job and I found out that it is an exellent experience and helped develop their leadership skills. First year students found it helped a lot with settling in especially if they didn’t know anyone before they arrived to the school

Road Safety Talks and Workshops

Road safety week was 2nd – 8th October and was organised to remind road users to be careful and to teach us that small changes to our behaviour on the roads can have a significant impact. The Transition Year students went to a talk and demonstration in Stephen St. car park where they learned the dangers of using a mobile phone while driving, and issues around fatigue and speeding. They were also able to experience a car-flip in simulated real life scenarios. The RSA find it is important to target this age group because they will be driving soon. TYs also went to a talk in Sligo Park Hotel where they heard from speakers about road safety. It was something they will never forget and completely changed their view of the road and driving.

Poetry Slam 

On Friday the 22nd of September 2017, all Transition Year students took part in an Inspireland Poetry Slam workshop. The workshop was held in the red room by Steven Murray, the founder of Inspireland. The students took part in different writing activities to help their written expression. They were also shown videos of contemporary poems and examples of Poetry Slam poems. Towards the end of the workshop, all students wrote their own poems using the new tips and skills they had learned. They could write about any topic they wanted and were encouraged to write about what they know. All who participated found it an entertaining and enjoyable way to learn about poetry and improve their literary skills. Some students also said that it helped them to have more confidence in their writing. You can read the poems produced in the Poetry Slam workshop online at


As part of the Transition Year P.E. course students get the chance to do four weeks of surfing. It usually takes place during P.E. class in Strandhill. 4A and 4B surf on Tuesdays and 4C and 4D surf on Mondays and they spend around an hour and a half in the water. Due to weather conditions surfing may be cancelled but it is always rescheduled, making sure each class gets their 4 weeks in the waves. Mr Cradock and Mrs McDermott are involved in organising the classes and there is a bus from the school to Strandhill. The TY students find surfing a great, new experience, some finding it more challenging than others, but overall everyone will agree that surfing is a lot of fun and something to remember from Transition Year.

TY 2016/17


In  September  Transition year students had a poetry workshop. Speaker, Stephen Murray came to talk about different approaches to everyday poetry. Ty’s were asked to write poems that express there feelings.  Here are some of their work and more can be found on 

Tearing Down Walls

Forced to search for meaning and devotion
With my friends and peers
Life is always in comparison.

Rebuilding the wall that I once tore down
Just for that one person I put trust in
But now I regret to cause deep within
I know in only myself I trust
Only will this brick walls turn to dust
When one gives me a reason to strive
Only then I will know my purpose in life.

Trusta Kamy Uchendu 

Sligo city

I walk these streets day and night
Know it better than most people do
I see things that make me think
I don’t talk I keep it all in my head
But any smart person knows Sligo city is a system
It’s like a ham and cheese sandwich
The gangs who run the city are the bottom bread
The cheese are the rich high end of Sligo but “SOFT”
The “HAM” or “BEEF” the middle class the less well off the strong to cut
The top bread is da police who make sure it’s all G.

William Moore


We live in one of the best surfing destinations in Ireland and SGS takes advantage of this. Every year all TY students have the opportunity to try surfing. For four weeks each Ty class is taken to Strandhill and given surfing lessons. 


Visiting lecturers are a feature of Ty as are visits to hear people talk about their experiences. This year Ty students heard from  Nobel Prizewinning scientist William C. Campbell who spoke at Sligo IT. Good manners and etiquette was the subject of another interesting if quirky talk! A dermatologist came and spoke to all TYs – boys and girls – about the importance of good skincare. The class attended a
talk by the Road Safety Authority and students were shown what could happen as a result of careless driving.


TY students go on many trips throughout the year.  The following are some trips they went on in 2016/17.

  • To start the year the T.Ys went to The Transition Year Expo 2016 in Punchestown, Dublin. This was a place for students to learn about TY and pick up ideas about what they might want to do during their year.
  • A trip was organised to see “A Feast of Bones” in the Hawks Well Theatre. This musical play was touring around the country and the TY was delighted to get a chance to see it.
  • A boat trip on Lough Gill was organised to give students a chance to see the lake and view the Lake Isle of Inisfree. They also got a chance to visit Parkes Castle.
  • TY Students went to the RDS in Dublin to attend an event run by I Wish. The aim of the organisation is to encourage girls to pursue a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths)
  • A cultural trip to Croke Park allowed the students absorb some of their own cultural heritage as well as giving our many International students a flavour of Irish culture.
  • The TY Spanish class went on a trip to Grange to Streedagh beach to learn about Spanish culture in Ireland. The class listened to a talk on the beach given by a local on the Spanish Armada and their involvement there.


Workshops such as the following are a big part of Ty in SGS.

  •  Geography students were taken to Dublin to do a workshop in the Irish Aid Centre. The students learnt about life in rural Africa and the work that is done by Irish aid workers.
  • In April 25 TY students were selected to go to Sligo IT to do a workshop run by performing arts students. They were using drama to make poetry more engaging. 
  • They also went to a drama workshop in the Hawks Well Theatre. 
  • TYs had a drumming workshop with Mr. Peter Crann. At this ever- popular workshop they learned about many different kinds of drums and how to play them.
  • TYs also had a Latin Dance workshop organised by the Spanish class. 


TY is an opportunity to get away on bonding rips, including campig trips, activity trips and cultural trips abroad.

  • In September the TY’s went on a camping trip to Lough Key forest Park. The trip was at the beginning of the year and helped the TY students to get to know one another better.  The trip included team-building activities. 
  • TY students and four of their teachers travelled to Italy at the end of the school year for a cultural trip to Sorrento and the Amal Coast. They saw Rome, Amalfi Coast and Sorrento. They visited a honey farm, a coffee-making business, learnt how to make  ice-cream and pizzas and generally had a fine time!
  • To finish the year, the whole TY class set off on a camping trip to Achill Island. They cycled around the Island and were blessed with good weather.


Work Experience is an important part of TY in Sligo Grammar School. Students must organise a total of three weeks of work experience during the year, one block of two weeks and one block of one week. Students are encouraged to think carefully about the work they choose to do as this is an opportunity for them to try out work that they think they might enjoy. Often students find out that what they thought they wanted to pursue as a career is, after all, not the job for them. For this reason alone, TY work experience is invaluable.


Debating and Public Speaking is part of TY and all students get a chance to try it. The SGS DebSoc meets regularly in the Khansama after school on Wednesdays and many TY students are involved and are very promising debaters. They competed in public speaking and debating competitions during the year. 


TY students get a chance to visit some of our Universities as it helps them decide on the subjects they might need for their Leaving Cert. In 2016/17 Students went to Trinity, UCD and DCU. This gave them an opportunity to see for themselves what the Universities had to offer.

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